A question for our liberal readers

So the 2012 Democratic National Convention is officially underway, and I’ve got a question for those of you who happen to be liberals/progressives/Democrats/whatever you want to call yourselves: Are any of you as disillusioned/dissatisfied with the Democratic Party (either here in Wisconsin or nationally) as I am?

Don’t mistake my asking that question as an indicator that I’m considering supporting Mitt Romney (because I’d sooner cut off my nose than vote for him), but I’m sick and tired of holding my nose and voting for the “lesser of two evils.”


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13 thoughts on “A question for our liberal readers

  1. Dissatisfied with the party… somewhat. I proudly re-upped my membership this past May when they asked, and will do some work this fall on the campaigns (if I can.. Possibly a new job, so that my throw a monkey wrench in it.) However, the national party’s lack-luster support of the recall efforts and translating that grass-roots campaign into a political victory has left a bitter taste in my mouth. Furthermore, I have an issue with the way Democrats have done at educating and framing the debate of things like Obamacare with citizens. There is absolutely NO reason that so many people who will ultimately vote for Romeny this fall should. They are voting against their own economic and social interests and falling victim to a campaign of illusions and antiquated thinking. Sadly, Democrats haven’t come up with a way to not seem like they are holding their nose and scoffing at people who don’t fully support their ideas. Instead of having a warm and inviting demeanor and lots and lots of information to help educate, they too often fall victim to name calling and having it’s own “lunatic fringe” be portrayed as the mainstream.

    We need a much better PR department! Sadly, I think a lot of liberals (myself included) loathe marketers, because they are generally used to sell things to people by using bright glitz and glamour instead of stone cold facts and truths. We need to admit to ourselves that selling our policies, initiatives, and achievements to the masses takes a PR department!

  2. As a 50-year-old gay man, a reader of history, and a politico, I must say progress for the causes I hold dear never happens as fast as I want. They never did for anyone who dreamed of a better day, a more just country.

    The good fights were never completed in the short term, but always played out over the years until we achieved the next rung on the ladder of success.

    Barack Obama was not my first choice in 2008. I admit my allegiance was to John Edwards.

    But the intellect and keen sense of the larger issues that surround all the headlines during the past four years is what I so admire and respect about President Obama. This man understands where we need to head, and seems determined in his own way to get us to the point where we need to be.

    It would have been easy to skip over health care and concentrate on jobs. But the economic factors that weigh so heavily on families and individuals as a result of health care concerns was a battle that needed to be fought.

    I preferred a single payer model. But politics is about what is possible to be achieved, not perfection.

    I was happy to see the law passed, and know we are much further down the field than when we started.

    The same type of thinking sums up my views regarding the issues of gay rights that we continue to pursue.

    I like President Obama’s steady hand on the leadership of this nation.

    There is another way, and he is Mitt Romney.

    Only a committed all-out fight from the likes of us will prevent that man from ever seeing the inside of the Oval Office.

  3. If you look back at people like F.D.R., J.F. and R.F. Kennedy, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Robert McNamara, Estes Kefauver, Tip O’Neil, Gaylord Nelson, Herbert Kohl, you just don’t see these kind of men in politics today. But the Lord said, “Let their be Barack Obama” and proved he hadn’t forgotten us. Please, I too am hurt at his not standing stronger with our recall, but his judgements for the long tern progression of this country has been, IMHO, spot on. So spot on that he has risked his whole career by trying to lead, not a revolution, but a resurgence of this nation.

  4. As a Christian and Catholic, I have difficulty understanding why everyone, especially, the vast middle class, does not support and vote for Democratic candidates. I have always felt the Democratic party is the party for people as opposed to special interests.

    As a lifelong Democratic voter, I only very recently joined the Democratic party because of the immorality, gross unfairness, and stench of recent Wisconsin GOP politics, notably by Walker, Prosser, the Fitzgerald brothers, and their proxies.

    My judgement of the Democratic party in Wisconsin is limited by the short time of my experiences, but I find a lack of backing and education and enlistment of volunteers at the local or county level.

    I have found the volunteers I have worked with to be dedicated and generous to a heroic degree.

    More later…maybe.

  5. As a secular humanist atheist I too do not understand why.. hey, Wait a Minute, I KNOW WHY…
    It is because Dems think the Truth, by itself, is enough to win hearts, minds and votes. Well, our GOP opponents know better than this. They repeat, they repeat, they repeat, they repeat, they repeat, get the message, they Repeat their Message until it repeats Itself in every media outlet available.
    When Dems realize that, if they have some or most of the Truth on their side, they have MORE responsibility, not LESS, to broadcast it from every mountaintop until it resounds in the media just like all the Republican LIES.
    Until they wake up and smell this coffee boiling over, we will have to trust the Average American voter to do the Right and True thing. And, since only 1/2 of the American Voters vote, we have just made a close race out of every single election everywhere, all the time.
    I guess I sound disappointed in the Party, don’t I? Hey, any corporate Democrat is better than any Tea Party Republican, unless some Dems, and you know who your Weiner is, are tweeting pix of their genitals. And, oh, Yes the DNC hung Wisconsin Dems out to dry on the Recall. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz had better help make good on some of these national races to atone for this bad-faith gesture.

  6. Two of the strongest/most accessible critics of the Bush and Obama administrations have been Marcy Wheeler/emptywheel and Jane Hamsher/Firedoglake. If either one were to publicly support a NATIONAL 3rd party candidate, I’d have to seriously consider following.

    My plan right now is to vote for Obama and then the day after the election, assuming he wins, to work very hard with a movement like Occupy to get the Obama to back off the Trans-Pacific Partnership (NAFTA on steroids) and embrace labor. Unions are a pain-in-the-neck, but without them, all the money flows north to the 1%. Next on my list the day after the election would be convincing the Obama administration to reign in Wall Street and dramatically raise MARGINAL tax rates on the 1%. Cuts in defense spending, withdrawal from Middle East Occupations, massive investment in GREEN technologies, and adherence to civil liberties will also be very high on my list. All these things Obama could have accomplished his first two years in office, when cowardly Dems held all three branches of government.

    The voter suppression tactics of the GOP have really scared me. Were it not for those, I’d be giving more thought to voting against Obama.

    It’s much easier for me to vote for local and state Democrats. I see little alternative.

    I know an extremely principled woman who will vote for Jill Stein, for President (green candidate). She’s in a deeply blue state. Whether that’s impacting her decision is unknown to me. I would not try to dissuade her.

    1. John Casper makes all good points. I cannot vote for a third party person until there are 4 parties, as I have advocated elsewhere on this blog.

  7. I’m getting slightly irritated with the dems, I’ll have to say it… There are so many reasons. 1)People keep asking me why Tammy Baldwin is behind in the polls. I tell them it is because when you think of her you think of Planned Parenthood and pro-choice. People get so angry when I tell them that but it’s the truth! Dems need to stop waving the Planned Parenthood / pro-choice banner, it is not winning you many votes. 52% of Dems that go to church are pro-life (myself included) and about 50% of Planned Parenthood clinic profits are from abortion– they do 40% of the US’s abortions!!! Dems keep trying to pass off Planned Parenthood as this sacred pedastal of women’s health. It’s a crock. Everyone knows it. Here’s the truth. 40% of Wisconsin goes to church. It is FILLED with Lutherans, Catholics, and the like. If you keep spouting this abortion crap you are shooting yourself in the foot. Very few dems are clamoring for pro-choice so why you make this your battle banner is beyond me. If Tammy loses, it will be her own fault. I will vote for her but I’m not very happy about doing so. : / Dems, please start leaving abortion out of the conversation and start focusing on other things. 2) This whole battle in the assembly and senate is getting old. Except for Dale Schultz (R) NO ONE is crossing the aisle. Dog gone it people. If you don’t start putting up bi-partisan bills, there is no hope for anyone. Make friends around the establishment. Learn to compromise. Let’s improve the state together. If you are putting up bills without some support from at least one republican you are wasting your time and our money. Every bill needs to be a bipartisan bill and I don’t care how hard that is, get it done. It is what we pay you for. 3)President Obama. Love you man. You’ve got my vote hands down. However, I think you can do better. Ask US to do things. Ask the country to buy American. Ask them to go through their cupboards and take some food to the food pantries. You have a good heart. Use it to influence the nation and help us become a better people. Start a nationwide online job databank. I really think you could do more. I think you could put some pressure on Washington to get some things done. Educate the American people on the tax breaks for the rich and ask them to put presssure on their representatives. Take names of those who vote for the wealthy and publicize them to the American people. By golly, do something!
    14)The Republicans have a point… there are FAR too many lazy people raping the system. I know jobs aren’t plentiful but you have to have some ambition too. We have people in generational poverty now that have never learned ambition, drive, etc…. They quit their jobs like a bunch of sissies whenever the going gets tough even if they do not have another job to replace it. I DO believe the jobs are there but you’ve got to be willing to put yourself out there and move if you have to. What you make on minimum wage should be much higher than what you make on government assistance… our system should encourage people to work and not encourage them to stay home. I think we need to work together to solve this problem. And dems, you need to start acknowledging this systemwide problem and addressing it. Because you don’t acknowledge this problem, people are making a mockery of you.

  8. I have been anything but quiet about what has basically become contempt for the Democratic Party on a national level. I am tired of pretending that most of the Democrats represent me at all. The Democratic Party is just as oriented towards Wall Street as the Republicans, with a thin veneer of social liberalism. I don’t vote on social issues. I barely consider them when it comes time to decide my vote. I want a party that is going to be unabashed in their support for working people, for progressive taxation, well funded education programs, strong environmental protections and rock solid regulation of the banking industry. Stand up and argue for the value of the commons, for libraries, schools, parks, modern infrastructure and investment in science. Until they do that they aren’t my party

    1. I like all of the areas of emphasis that Paul outlines. These ought to be the main issues in ANY national campaign, and if we had a more secular focus to our governance, they WOULD be.
      Thanx, Paul,

    2. Here’s the thing, the GOP is NOT going to give you any of that. There has been a major shift to the right by both parties. Don’t you think the Democrats now look/sound like the Eisenhower Republicans? Roads, fiscal responsibility, family values, hard work, military spending?

      The GOP is not going to give you libraries, well-funded schools, or any of the stuff you want. We have to get active to get what we want and even then change takes time.

  9. I’m a Catholic woman, a mom and I volunteered a lot for the recall because of the cuts to education that I feel are going to be bad for the future of the state, let alone the economy of the state right now and I feel there should be more unions, not less.

    I am a pragmatist, the GOP doesn’t even believe climate change is happening. They seem to be on an anti-teacher kick that is so disrespectful and short-sighted and I think, perhaps it is even evil. It is evil, actually.

    Change does take time, but I feel we have all been asleep at the wheel. These people in Washington, many of them, are just puppets. Paul Ryan is perfect example of this. He’s over there drinking 350 dollar bottles of wine with lobbyists and pretending to be fiscally conservative. He’s not the only one and that is just an example, if it were just that, it wouldn’t be the end of the world, but it is his voting record, this crazy budget. If someone came up with all those cuts AND raised taxes on the wealthy 1%, AND stopped the military spending, AND closed tax loopholes, well then they could be considered fiscally conservative. What I don’t buy about the GOP right now is that they won’t collect any revenue and they won’t close tax loopholes.

    People like Tammy Baldwin give me hope. So, I will volunteer for her and to register voters. I don’t know what to think about the DNC. I heard a few speakers who were pro-union, but some were luke-warm, if you know what I mean. It seems to me, letting Romney get elected would be even worse than Walker, from what he has said, so you don’t really want to have to deal with that on a national level, God forbid.

    Consider volunteering for Tammy Baldwin, a real progressive, if you can’t bring yourself to volunteer for other candidates.

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