Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Note to restive Democrats. The most active Congressional session in 15 years should be some comfort to you. Giving the debate over to the Republicans on each and every issue was poor form though. Allowing the common discourse to become set in marketing slogans and talking points created by conservative think tanks only deepened the communication gap between Democrats and the citizens of this fine nation.
It is not enough to morally right, or factually right. We've found that it matters little that what is said is NOT what is done. Hypocrisy washes off the backs of Congress critters like water off a duck. It just doesn't matter that the talking points are meaningless and silly. It's communication that's important. In this one area, Democrats must realize that they've let down their leader. As a group, they've also let down the progressive Democrats who took the tough votes on the legislation that was put forward in this Congress. They've let down the nation.
Communication.... Reclaiming the debate... Defending political turf... Standing tall for progressive principles... For Democrats who'd rather be wonks, selling themselves is like eating glass. Welcome to the media world we live in. We've got to find words, terms, and frames for our principles. Then we need to repeat them over and over. We've seen the results of only being right.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
"Talking, unprompted, about the debate over the expiring Bush tax cuts, Strickland said he was dumbfounded at the party's inability to sell the idea that the rates for the wealthy should be allowed to expire.
'I mean, if we can't win that argument we might as well just fold up,' he said. 'These people are saying we are going to insist on tax cuts for the richest people in the country and we don't care if they are paid for, and we don't think it is a problem if it contributes to the deficit, but we are not going to vote to extend unemployment benefits to working people if they aren't paid for because they contribute to the deficit. I mean, what is wrong with that? How can it be more clear?'"
Since this statement by Mr. Strickland, we've seen the debate play out. Mr. Obama made a deal. The GOP is doing a celebration dance, the Democrats are in mourning. This is the definition of "crying in your beer." Strickland asked the essential question. Mr. Obama called out his supporters and nailed them. Where was the passion? Sen. Saunders' too-little-too-late filibuster? Sure it was passionate, but where was the passion when the issue was being decided back in the late summer?
Clunk.... That's the sound of cans being kicked down the road. That's all you heard from knee-shaking, fearful Democrats who, being so afraid of losing that they never really stood up for the principles Mr. Saunders expounded for 9 hours, lost and lost big. Clunk... cans down the road.
There went the tax cuts for the rich. Aren't we all looking forward to two more years of GOP prancing and extolling the virtues of wealth? Hooray..... There went DADT. There went the DREAM. Being right doesn't mean much does it...
Thursday, December 9, 2010
"'Despite what some Democrats in Congress have suggested, voters did not signal they wanted more cooperation on the Democrats' big-government policies that most Americans oppose,' McConnell and incoming House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, wrote in an op-ed article published in the Washington Post."
Republicans are very clear about what they want. It is clear what their supporters want. They are willing to go to the mat for it. They are willing to bankrupt the country for it. They are steamrollering the debate and Liberals and Progressives are just waving the white flag.
No one in the progressive movement seems to want to do the heavy lifting here. The President is pretty much alone. No congress critters have stood with him, physically or rhetorically. Everyone is cowering under the threat of the dastardly scrooges in the GOP. The prog blogosphere is blasting his tax cut deal and accusing HIM of caving to the GOP.
WHERE ARE YOU? Are you calling your congressman? Are you SHOUTING at your congressmen? Are you contributing to the work being done by MoveOn and DFA? Why not?
The President has said that he'd like to get a better deal, but he's got no one watching his back. He's not caving, his supermajority in Congress is caving. Give 'em a call. NOW!
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Saturday, December 4, 2010
- 32 Million Americans covered
- Savings of billions and billions of dollars against the national debt
- Illegal to turn away pre-existing conditions
- Illegal to jack up premiums for pre-existing conditions
- An independent commission will cut Medicare's costs
- fixes the tax break for employer sponsored health care
- pays doctors for quality rather than quantity
- calorie and nutritional information posted at fast food and chain restaurants
- Consumer Protection Agency.
- made the dirivatives market more transparent
- a systemic-risk regulator
- the ability to take down banks with out resorting to bailouts
- Economic relief in the form of "expansions of Medicaid, COBRA, food stamps, tax cuts, and unemployment benefits"
- millions of jobs created and/or saved
- more than 75,000 infrastructure projects
- digitization of medical records
- massive investments in renewable energy
- the Race to the Top in education
- funded research at the National Institutes of Health
5. Expanded SCHIP for another 4 million children.
6. New regulations on tobacco
7. The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act
8. Expanded veterans benefits, especially for female veterans
9. Expand the nations wilderness protection by 2 million acres.
10. Preserved our American system of capitalism by saving GM from bankruptcy
Wow. Add it all up and be impressed. It's what we voted for. It's what we can support. It's what President Obama won in the face of the fiercest partisan opposition in history.
There's more to come.
Friday, December 3, 2010
Thursday, December 2, 2010
Ms. Palin insists on forgetting about Black History or never learning it in the first place.
It seems that America never had slaves, or Jim Crow, or any racial inequity at all! Blacks should behave just like her. Patriotic and happy to be living in the wealthiest country in the world with due deference to Ms. Palin and her adoring white folk. Richard Cohen's good article is a nice back up read for this point.
No more income tax.
That's right. Defund the country. Flush it down the bathtub. Pay for nothing, just charge it.
Mr. Obama doesn't love America as much as she does.
Mr. Obama doesn't love Ms. Palin as much a she does. She is really milking the media star routine for the money and status it offers. Unapologetically too!
She's a "real" feminist. A strong woman who knows her place.
So why isn't she barefoot and pregnant? oops... been there done that.
She's obsessed with her loss in '08 and now with her pop star status.
Ditch public service for self service. Nuff said.
Monday, November 29, 2010
My response to the opinion piece:
David Stockman, who led the all-important Office of Management and Budget under Reagan and was a chief architect of his fiscal policy, criticized today’s GOP for misreading Reagan’s legacy by adopting a “theology” of tax cuts. Stockman has spoken out before, but took perhaps his strongest stance yet against his own party today, saying “I’ll never forgive the Bush administration” for “destroying the last vestige of fiscal responsibility that we had in the Republican Party.” He also broke with Republican orthodoxy on a number of key issues:
– We need “a higher tax burden on the upper income.”
– “After 1985, the Republican Party adopted the idea that tax cuts can solve the whole problem, and that therefore in the future,deficits didn’t matter and tax cuts would be the solution of first, second, and third resort.”
– The 2001 Bush tax cut “was totally not needed.”
– On claims that Reagan proved tax cuts lead to higher government revenues: “Reagan proved nothing of the kind and yet that became the mantra and it just led the Republican Party away from its traditional sound money, fiscal restraint.”
– Former Vice President Cheney “should have known better” than claim the Bush tax cuts would pay for themselves.
– “I’ll never forgive the Bush administration and Paulson for basically destroying the last vestige of fiscal responsibility that we had in the Republican Party. After that, I don’t know how we ever make the tough choices.”
Thursday, November 25, 2010
"This argument over Thanksgiving strikes me as a symptom of our failure to acknowledge that the American story is not all one thing or all another.
It is, instead, a tale of a healthy and ongoing tension between our love of individualism and our reverence for community. Capitalism is part of our story, but so is solidarity and the idea that no one ever really 'goes it alone.' Our rights are embedded in a web of social bonds and obligations that enrich us. We have a responsibility to take care of ourselves and our families, but also to look out for one another. And we hope that if we run into trouble, someone, maybe even the entire community, will look out for us."
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
ThinkProgress Poll: Republicans Who Want To Repeal Health Care Law Should Opt Out Of Gov’t-Sponsored Health Plans
Monday, November 22, 2010
"The smart kids in school, we have learned, went into major-league banking and invented brilliant financial machinery that effectively turned smoldering waste into gold. They lent money to any would-be homeowner with a signature and bundled these lousy loans together. Then they refashioned these malodorous piles of trash into new securities that complicit ratings agencies deemed as safe as Uncle Sam's savings bonds. They sold their inventory to pension funds, municipalities and other institutions that saw a AAA rating and dug no deeper. By the time the world figured out that the bankers had been peddling garbage, somebody else owned it."
"WASHINGTON -- These days, when we think of George W. Bush, we think mostly of what a horrible mess he made of the economy. But his even more tragic legacy is the loss of our moral authority, and the transformation of the United States of America from global champion of human rights into an outlaw nation.
History is likely to judge Bush most harshly for two things in particular: Launching a war against a country that had not attacked us, and approving the use of cruel and inhumane interrogation techniques.
And that's why the two most essential lies -- among the many -- in his new memoir are that he had a legitimate reason to invade Iraq, and that he had a legitimate reason to torture detainees."
I've always appreciated Dan's work, though I'm not always in agreement with it. In this case, his thorough reporting over the entire breadth of the Bush Administration comes to bear. He once again revisits the debates that occurred during the startup of the Iraq War and with the discovery of the Torture program. I certainly wasn't very difficult for him to review the mistakes and tragic consequences of the Bush policy decisions.
He takes it one important step further however in dramatically stating that the revisionist version of history surrounding these events is now in the public eye and receiving little critical analysis. His fear is that an apathetic public and a do-nothing-about-it Obama Administration will allow this disinformation campaign to succeed.
I'm very glad for Mr. Froomkin's analysis and that it is in a national forum. It should have been on the front page and it should be Mr. Froomkin sitting with Matt Lauer on the Today Show issuing his rebuttal.
"In fact there is a body of empirical, historical evidence that proves clearly that tax cuts for the rich not only do nothing to spur economic growth - they actually do substantial damage to the prospects for economic growth."
When you're in a recession, the problem is that demand is too low, so spending that increases demand really boosts the economy, since it creates demand that entices businesses to hire people who then spend more money and create more jobs -- and so on.
But when you give tax breaks to the rich, they don't spend most of those breaks like a family that needs unemployment. They save and invest a substantial portion. But in a recession you don't need more savings or investment, you need more demand.
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Friday, November 19, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Perhaps some new words need to inserted into the debate now. Mr. Ailes is a prominent member of the media and has done his utmost to define the debate according to his opinion and observations. I think it would be perfectly fair to characterize his position as fascism.
Fascism is literally an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization. Mr. Ailes is without a doubt as right a right winger as you can find. I think folks could argue this point, but Mr. Ailes is certainly as close to being a Fascist as Mr. Obama is a socialist, or NPR is a Nazi organization.
Let's make a vow. Anytime you hear socialist or nazi applied to someone who holds liberal social views, lets feel free to point out that the the right wing partisans who hold rightist views are just as likely to be fascists. It is what it is folks.
Friday, November 12, 2010
"For example, Goodlatte’s fiscal year 2008 earmarks included $294,000 for the Wayne Theatre Alliance in Waynesboro for renovations to the Wayne Theatre, $245,000 for renovations to a historic theater at the Lynchburg Academy of Music and $245,000 that Goodlatte says was used to make street improvements to the historic market in downtown Roanoke." (source)
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
On the revenue side, at long last comes the recognition that there must be a way to pay for the things we choose do to together as a nation. The government must be made to work efficiently FOR the American people who aren't the wealthiest and most powerful. The government must protect the interests of those who are pretty much powerless to protect themselves.
This is a pretty good start.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Monday, November 1, 2010
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Friday, October 29, 2010
This then is how a conservative, free market America will work. Privateers create their own demand in collusion with legislators who are funded by the privateers.
This of course, perverts the role of the legislators who are representatives of their constituents. "Representing" the interests of the private sector is legal, but ignoring the rest of the population has a foul smell. The biggest problem?
The private prison system already introduces bad incentives into the policy-making process because people stand to make money from a more punitive, rather than a more effective prison system -- and in Arizona with SB 1070, we're seeing how that dynamic works as applied to illegal immigration. This isn't new; private prison companies have been in the business of detention for years -- but SB 1070, and the possibility that other states will follow Arizona's lead, is nothing short of a bonanza for an industry that profits from a harsh, ineffective immigration system.
Free marketeers are asking us to trust that their motives will match up with what's best for the population. This is but one example of how they don't. If the Republicans succeed in their quest to repeal government services of all types there will surely be more examples like this, or of the family in Tennessee whose house burned to the ground while firemen watched, or health care denied or dropped because of the profit motive.
What a wonderful world it will be when our roads, our health care, our community safety, our zoning laws, our public lands, city parks, community centers, our utility infrastructure, and our public education system all come under the loving care of CEO's and corporate privateers who will turn all of these into money-making bonanza's. I wonder.. where will the money come from and where will it go? That great sucking sound you hear? That's what's left of the wealth of the working classes swooshing into corporate coffers.
Yes, what a wonderful world...
Thursday, October 28, 2010
The interesting thing here is the involvement of Sarah Palin. It doesn't seem to be helping. I was unaware until today of her unpopularity in her home state.
Obama On 'Daily Show': Stewart Presses President To Defend 'Timid' Policies, Hiring Of Old D.C. Hands (VIDEO)
Now... with regards to my previous post, the President now speaks for himself. Please scroll down for the video interview.
54% ... Look at that for a little. Now look at it again. That's President Obama's approval rating... up 6 points since August. Now listen to the sadistic advertising campaign against him that's been beaten like a drum since November 2008.
Americans have some resistance to advertising, but a large batch of folks will believe something if they are told often enough. These folks, bless 'em, just don't care to do any fact checking on their own. So we have the misperceptions and lies that Mr. Lyons is referring to. I guess we'll find out if spending cuts, shrinking the tax base, and repeating the refrain that "we've fixing things," will stave off another great depression. That's the Republican plan.
I think Republicans are right about only one thing. If they keep to that last strategy, you know the one where they repeat over and over, loudly, "WE'RE FIXING THINGS!!!"?? Lots of folks will begin to believe it. Maybe that will calm folks down before they read in the small print on the back page of the newspaper that they couldn't do the first two after all....
They'll say their hands were tied by the hole that the Democratic Congress left them in. They'll say that because President Obama would veto it anyway, they won't even try. Then they'll accuse the Democrats of not wanting to "govern" in a fair and democratic way. They may even utter that strange and potent word... "obstructionists!"
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Wisconsin: The Tea Party test case - Tea Parties | Tea Party Movement, Tax Day Tea Party - Salon.com
On the other side is Republican Ron Johnson, the antithesis of everything the Tea Party says it stands for. In business, Johnson built a company propped up by government grants and loans -- otherwise known in Tea Party terms as “bailouts.” As a board member of a local opera house, he lobbied for funds from the same “big government” stimulus bill the Tea Party despises. During the campaign, he has touted NAFTA-style trade policies’ “creative destruction” of Wisconsin’s manufacturing economy. And rather than promoting the freedom the Tea Party says it values, Johnson has praised China’s repressive communist regime for its economic policies.
It's worth noting here that this same Republican deception runs across other issues as well. Republicans are suggesting they'll protect individual liberty, while shrinking government small enough to fit into your bedroom or your uterus. Or they're running on the Constitution, while also having their hired thugs handcuff and detain a reporter in a flagrant violation of the First Amendment. Hell, some Republicans are running for U.S. Senate while opposing the 17th Amendment that established popular elections of senators. Wrap your head around that one.
Monday, October 25, 2010
This friends is reality. MSNBC is gaining viewers in a wider demographic, Fox News is losing ground. The prediction that the demographic that drives the (I'm a little) Tea(pot) Party watches Fox News and responds on cue to the Fox News Cycle.
The white, aging folk who sit at home and watch the news on TV is a shrinking demographic. The most telling comment in this article is the statement that Fox is not very internet friendly, MSNBC is. I'm watching Rachel Maddow at this moment, because I'm usually doing something else at 8:00 every evening. I only listen to Countdown via podcast and I'm not the only one.
The energy gap? The problem with that scenario is that the Fox geezers are using up all the energy they have and their supply is diminishing. The rest of the folks in America are younger, more diverse, and have only just begun to show a small fraction of the energy they have in store.
Fox News pedals the antiquated "Southern Strategy" started in 1968 by Richard Nixon. Variations of this strategy have been necessary, but the desired result is still the same. Lock up the white vote, suppress the votes of all the rest. This year's "strangest election season of all time" is driven by the extreme views of candidates who carry the Republican banner. The energy expended and the level of extremism present in these campaigns can not be sustained. There isn't enough energy left in that demographic. They'll fight harder and harder but the awakening demographics of younger, newer citizens is poised to jump into the debate about their future.
My prediction? If Republicans actually do win one of the houses of Congress this fall, the awakening of the left will only speed up. The extremist policies of the current crop of GOP candidates will become too hard to defend and the new demographics will have a huge effect on the next election cycle. Stay tuned...
Sunday, October 24, 2010
This article by Tim Dickenson is a must read. It cuts through the fog of political warfare and nails the reality of Obama's accomplishments. Very encouraging to this Old Blue.
Less than halfway through his first term, Obama has compiled a remarkable track record. As president, he has rewritten America's social contract to make health care accessible for all citizens. He has brought 100,000 troops home from war and forged a once-unthinkable consensus around the endgame for the Bush administration's $3 trillion blunder in Iraq. He has secured sweeping financial reforms that elevate the rights of consumers over Wall Street bankers and give regulators powerful new tools to prevent another collapse. And most important of all, he has achieved all of this while moving boldly to ward off another Great Depression and put the country back on a halting path to recovery.Read more at www.rollingstone.com
Friday, October 15, 2010
372 Bills That Have Been Passed by the House & Not Yet Acted Upon By the Senate (as of 8/23/10) - TheHill.com
I wouldn't vote for a Republican. There are still hundreds of bills that have been passed in the House of Representatives that are awaiting action in the Senate. The Senate Republicans have embraced the political strategy of blocking these bills as long as possible to try and run out the clock on the Democrats currently in the majority. They are absolutely resolute in their commitment to making President Obama and the Democrats look bad. By not allowing even a vote on these items they are succeeding in bringing the business of the government of the United States of America to a complete halt.
This political strategy puts the GOP against such radical proposals as HR 409, Conveying Land to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, HR 548 Civil War Battlefield Preservation Act, HR 577 Vision Care for Kids Act, and HR 603 Utah National Guard Readiness Act. Could this game they are playing be any more obvious?
With Republicans the most important thing is pledging party purity over country, opposing bi-partisan and necessary legislation simply to play out a political strategy, and voting in virtual lock-step against legislation that has been approved by the majority. For this reason alone, I would never vote for a Republican.
I'd vote for anybody but a Republican. The Republican Party has fallen hook line and sinker for the Corporate subsidization of the hard line against the very idea of global warming. That means that Republicans stand aggressively against clean water, clean air, and renewable energy.
The science is complicated, but this much is very clear. If any of those Republicans running for office put their head in a paper bag and started breathing CO2, they'd pass out pretty quick and maybe even suffocate. I don't recommend that experiment to anyone. It's not that CO2 is a pollutant, it's that the percentage of CO2 and O2 is wrong.
Adding CO2 to the earth's atmosphere forces the earth's climate to change. Polluters, deniers, and, alas, Republicans are all for changing the earth's climate. I'd vote for anybody but a Republican for this reason alone.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
A Question for Mr. Goodlatte:
If we had privatized Social Security in 2005 and, given the huge losses that would have been incurred to the citizen's retirement accounts, would you have supported a government bailout of the retiree's, both present and future, who would have otherwise had their retirement accounts wiped out?
That of course is a theoretical question. So now sir, do you support the privatization of Social Security? In your view, is this a conservative policy or is it a radical one? How does the privatization of Social Security help safeguard the future of our children and grandchildren?
Would you consign the future generations retirement income to the vagaries of the stock market? You and I know that the only winners are the ones who "let it ride." This is the strategy the US Government uses to fund Social Security. Do you have faith in the United States of America and its ability to insure the welfare of its citizents in retirement? Are the Wall Street investment firms so impoverished that they now need the trillions of dollars that will fund the future well-being of Americans to invest in profits for themselves?
In another political race to the north...
What to make of the O'Donnell campaign… Where are they? No public campaign events, no contact with the media save sanctioned conservative media. Only talking to themselves, only paying attention to themselves, only celebrating with themselves… Sounds an awful lot like group masturbation, no wait! They're against that…
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Political fundamentalists are as dangerous as any other kind of extremist. This is the politician who would be king, endorsing Tea Party candidates all over the country, channelling money and influence. King maker, country breaker.
Sen. DeMint bravely stands up for bigotry
The South Carolina Republican defends his belief that gays and unmarried women shouldn't be allowed to teach
Sen. Jim DeMint is standing behind comments he made Friday about gays and unmarried sexually active women being unfit to teach in America's classrooms. Today, a spokesperson attempted to explain the South Carolina Republican's comments: "Senator DeMint believes that hiring decisions at local schools are a local school board issue, not a federal issue. He was making a point about how the media attacks people for holding a moral opinion." Well, yeah, we do when that moral opinion is discriminatory and the person holding it has the power to influence public policy -- and so do gay rights groups and women's organizations.
DeMint's remarks at a church rally last week were reported by the Spartanburg Herald Journal: "DeMint said if someone is openly homosexual, they shouldn't be teaching in the classroom and he holds the same position on an unmarried woman who's sleeping with her boyfriend -- she shouldn't be in the classroom." He said of nearly identical comments he made in 2004: "[When I said those things,] no one came to my defense, but everyone would come to me and whisper that I shouldn't back down." How brave of him to be the martyr for self-righteous bigotry! He added, "They don't want government purging their rights and their freedom to religion." As the Charleston City Paper puts it: " DeMint's America is one where guns and God are allowed in the classroom, but not good educators who happen to have a functioning, unwed vagina or his and his bath towels."Read more at www.salon.com
Friday, October 1, 2010
Conventional Wisdom driven by heresay and marketing. It's false. Repeat. It's false.
Unfortunately, it's also a testament to how little most people care about good policy and competent execution. As near as I can tell, it's practically conventional wisdom these days that the stimulus package was a complete bust—and all because the Obama administration initially made a lousy projection about the future course of the recession and suggested that the stimulus package would reduce unemployment to 8 percent. If their forecast of the depth of the recession had been correct and they'd predicted, say, 11.5 percent unemployment without a stimulus package and 10 percent with it—which is what happened—elite opinion about the stimulus would probably be completely different.
So there you have it. Good policy and good execution gets you bubkes. All it takes is one wrong forecast number to wipe it all out. Welcome to the real world.Read more at motherjones.com
I like the fact that the stimulus has come in on time and under budget. Sounds like good business to me. The fact that it saved our economic butts in the recent crisis is telling.
Of course, we shoulda done more.
Report gives stimulus package high marks
By Lori Montgomery
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, October 1, 2010;
The massive economic stimulus package President Obama pushed through Congress last year is coming in on time and under budget - and with strikingly few claims of fraud or abuse - according to a White House report to be released Friday.
Coming barely a month before November's midterm elections, which will determine whether Democrats retain control of Congress, the report challenges public perceptions of the stimulus aid as slow-moving and wasteful - an image that has fueled voter anger with the dominant party. Even some former skeptics who predicted that the money would lead to rampant abuse now acknowledge that the program could serve as a model for improving efficiency in government.
"Given the ambitious nature of the stimulus, the fact that things have gone relatively smoothly suggests that they did put appropriate and adequate resources" into program oversight, said Soloway, an early skeptic of the package. "They definitely deserve credit for that," he said.
Bernstein said "people's feelings about the recovery act or the role of government in society" are unlikely to change because of Friday's report. "We have a ton more work left to do," he said.
Read more at www.washingtonpost.com
But the report serves to verify, he said, that "the recovery act has accomplished much of what it set out to do."
Sunday, September 26, 2010
This is the most discouraging thing I've heard yet in this campaign season. Corporate Cash is buying what's left of our political system. The minority, wealthy, corporate class is succeeding in buying Congress, the judicial appointments, and will shortly own the Government.
Since they see the Government as their biggest competitor for what's left of the money in the middle class they are making sure that the pipeline for cash runs straight to them.
Peasant revolt anyone?
Citizens United After Eight Months
Last January, in the Citizens United case, the Supreme Court ruled that corporations were free to spend unlimited sums to support or oppose candidates for office. Eight months later, how's that working out? Michael Luo and Stephanie Strom report in the New York Times:
"I can tell you from personal experience, the money’s flowing," said Michael E. Toner, a former Republican FEC commissioner, now in private practice at the firm Bryan Cave.
The reason the Times' paints only an "anecdotal portrait" and Toner relies on his "personal experience" is that this new corporate money is increasingly being funneled through 501(c)(4) groups that aren't required to disclose who their donors are. You can see the results at the Washington Post's running tally of campaign spending by interest groups: seven of the top ten spenders are Republican organizations, and they're outspending Democrats by nearly two to one, much of it on ads specifically targeted against Democratic House and Senate candidates.
And all that money is showing up on the airwaves. Jonathan Martin of Politico reports that an internal Democratic spreadsheet has tallied up the spending so far, and the story is grim: as of this week, pro-Republican organizations had paid for a total of $23.6 million worth of ads compared to $4.8 million for Democratic-aligned groups. And it's only going to get worse: Over the next four weeks, GOP groups have $9.4 million worth of TV ads reserved across 40 districts compared to $1.3 million in five districts for Democratic groups.
And what about liberal groups? Even in the best of times they have a hard time competing with corporate PAC money, but this year is even tougher. At the same time that Citizens United has opened the spigot even wider for Republicans, it's run dry for Democrats. While Karl Rove and his buddies are hoovering up over $50 million for American Crossroads, liberal fundraisers are struggling with a base that's dispirited and unhappy over failures on climate change and DADT and shortcomings on healthcare reform. Jim Jordan, who has started up a new group called Commonsense Ten that's airing ads in Senate races, explains things crisply: "The progressive donor base has stopped writing checks," he says.
Which means that liberals had better get out of their funk and start supporting liberal causes and liberal candidates. Because it's a sure bet that all those corporations newly empowered by Citizens United won't be.Read more at motherjones.com