Saturday, November 8, 2008

Already At It...

Okay, so it's been what, five days?

We got Foreign Policy wonk
Steve Clemons already complaining:

I'm not satisfied with the roster of economic personalities and thinkers we see Barack Obama mixing with.

Harvey Fierstein (yes, that Harvey Fierstein) justifiably upset about the results of the Gay Marriage Propositions in California, Arizona and Florida:

While we dance in the streets and pat ourselves on the back for being a nation great enough to reach beyond racial divides to elect our first African-American president let us not forget that we remain a nation still proudly practicing prejudice.

And one of my least favorite progressives
David Sirota blathers on about what Obama's election means to him:

So, while the president-elect talks of forming a bipartisan Cabinet, his victory wasn't the public's cry for milquetoast government by blue-ribbon commission. As Deepak Bhargava of the Center for Community Change says, Obama's win was an ideological mandate presenting "an opening for transformational, progressive change."

Oh God.

Steve...ummm...yeah...uh....Obama won. I think he gets to pick who he wants.

Harvey, not that the defeat of California's Prop 8 isn't important (it is), but we are kinda facing the implosion of the global economy, and we just won a major, major victory. Let us enjoy it.

...and David Sirota isn't a total idiot, but he's a bit of a tool.

David, you did notice the rather
impressive list of Republicans voting for Obama, didn't you? Charles Fried, William Weld, Arne Carlson, Colin Powell?? These people didn't surrender their Republican values at the voting booth. They simply wanted them back, and found that our candidate had a better grip on things than Bush or McCain.

What truly concerns me about tools like Sirota is that the President-Elect is going to out into the world, and
satisfy 80-90% of the Progressive-Left's wish list (in the case of Economic justice maybe even 90-100%) and it still won't be good enough for people like Sirota.

I'm sorry (and now, this message is for tools on the right),
President-Elect Obama has a mandate for change. He got 6 million more votes than your guy. He won way more electoral votes than anyone in a long time. He won in states where Democrats hadn't been competitive in decades. This was a clear repudiation of the Bush way of doing things.

But, tools on the left, it wasn't a clear enough signal for everything to start going our way. It was a signal to put aside our bull@#$% differences, get to work and get something done.

It was a mandate for:

Of course, incoming White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel put it way better than I just did (in the Wall Street Journal of all places):

Both Barack and Bill Clinton have an incredible connection to the public. Both ran on a message of hope. Both ran against failed policies that let the country down prior to them being elected. I don't think the country is yearning for an ideological answer. If anything it's the opposite. They want real solutions to real problems. And if we do an ideological test, we will fail. Our challenge is to work to solve the actual problems that the country is facing, not work to satisfy any constituency or ideological wing of the party."

Party Time.

Will.I.Am isn't the only one gettin' down...

Maybe it would have been easier to lose...

News out of Chicago that ticket demand for the upcoming inaugural is, in the words of the Chicago Tribune "through the roof".

But check out the first quote in the article.  It comes from Sharon Jenkins, a spokesperson for Congressman Bobby Rush (D) of Illinois.

Who's Bobby Rush?  Well, then Illinois State Senator Barack Obama challenged Rep. Rush for his Congressional seat in 2000, and the words of the New York Times, "schooled".

I'm not going to mention the fact that one of the things Rush used against the future President-elect was that he wasn't "black enough".  Reminding people of that ugly detail in this time of celebration would be wrong.

And now, Congressman Rush is fielding requests for President-elect Obama's Inauguration Day.


Friday, November 7, 2008

Numbers man Chuck Todd on the Obama Presser

First time ever embedding video.  Let her rip...

An old-fashioned kind of racism...

Imagine the surprise of a family of Obama supporters from Hardwick, New Jersey when they woke up this morning and found a six-foot cross burning on their lawn.

And here we go...

So...why is a scrub, backup Center for the Texas "Hook 'Em" Longhorns making racist comments about Obama on his Facebook page?

The First Post...

America had a helluva night, Tuesday, November 4th, 2008.

America finally got out of its reflexive, defensive crouch; stood up and turned toward the future. Just for that, we were cheered.

America finally rejected Karl Rove, triangulation, 50 percent plus one, wedge issue, slash-and-burn, gutterball politics. With that, our fellow citizens danced in the streets.

America did something no one thought we would ever do, elect an African-American leader of the free world. With that, the world said one thing:

"They're back."

"The Americans are back."

The open-handed, back-slapping, big smile, big laugh, ever present, ever hopeful, maybe a little too loud, but always ready to step up and do the job Americans are back.

And let the church say "Amen."

I suffer from a Jinx, my 2004 Jinx. If I participate in any meaningful way in a National Campaign, the Democrats lose. If I stay home…we win. My role in the Obama campaign, was to give money, and explain what was going to my family and friends, and tamp down the occasional rumor.

Easier said than done.

This is something I usually do during Presidential Campaigns. For me, Politics is like Sports (and I can talk me some Sports, don't you worry). This is why I do the reading, the researching, the listening. I want to be able to go out there, and defend my Candidate from attacks from the Right.

But something happened this election cycle that hadn't happened before. I was starting to spend more and more time defending my guy from attacks from the left.

Liberals, by nature, are a panicky lot. Now, this ain't the pot calling the kettle black. I was my own bundle of nerves going into November 4th. (And if I didn't fess up now, I'm sure my Father wouldn't let me hear the end of it.).

There were of course ups and downs during the campaign, of which I asked readers at TPM to chill about.

Then, there was the FISA Legislation that made a lot of Liberals very, very unhappy. While I agreed with their points, I just didn't think it was the end of the world.

And finally there was the matter of Obama's wanting to utilize the Office of Faith Based Initiatives. A lot of my fellow progressives just got that wrong.

So here I am, adding my voice to an already large liberal blogosphere.

The name of this Blog is going to be Fort McHenry II. I named it thus because I am a Marylander. Fort McHenry plays a special part of Maryland and American history, playing as it does, such a large and vital role in the creation of our National Anthem. Of course it evokes patriotism, and Americana, but also vigilance under duress. It also happened to be the name of the blog I kept briefly on

For twelve years this Nation was afflicted with hear-nothing, see-nothing, do-nothing Government. The Nation looked to Government but the Government looked away. Nine mocking years with the golden calf and three long years of the scourge! Nine crazy years at the ticker and three long years in the breadlines! Nine mad years of mirage and three long years of despair! Powerful influences strive today to restore that kind of government with its doctrine that that Government is best which is most indifferent.

For nearly four years you have had an Administration which instead of twirling its thumbs has rolled up its sleeves. 
We will keep our sleeves rolled up.

We had to struggle with the old enemies of peace--
business and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering.

They had begun to consider the Government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob.

Never before in all our history have these forces been so united against one candidate as they stand today. 
They are unanimous in their hate for me--and I welcome their hatred.

Franklin Roosevelt's Address Announcing the Second New Deal
October 31, 1936

That's the kind of Liberal I want to be. That's why I've chosen the face of Franklin Roosevelt, our 32nd President, as my avatar. When I think of Roosevelt, he is the very the antithesis of the soft, wimpy image the Right would have plastered to us on the left. His kind of Liberalism, got us through the Great Depression. His kind of Liberalism led us through World War II.  His kind of Liberalism, is coming back.

I have made a decision to trust President Obama. Not a blind, anything goes, rubber-stamp kind of trust.Folks like that have been in power for the last eight years, and you see where its gotten us. I'm talking a more general trust, like one you would (hopefully) invest in a Team or a Football Coach. I'm talking about the fact that the President-Elect has won more elections than I have; that he may know more about Economics and Politics than I do. I'm saying that he seems to know what the heck he's doing, and that should count for something.

My goal here isn't to blather on about what I think is going on in the world of Politics, although that's going to happen by default. Besides, there are better sites for that; KosJed and Josh immediately come to mind. Raw Story and Huffington Post both do a lot of what I want to do, but it doesn't always cover everything I'm interested in, nor does it hit all the newssites I like to hit.

I don't know everything, but what I really want to do is create a place where if there is a story I'm really interested in, or a take I feel hasn't been adequately covered, friends and family can come here and see what it is I'm talking about, and not have to deal with an avalanche of Emails (which I was wont to do in the age B.B. - before blogging). If this enterprise expands beyond that, then great. But if readership remains small, that's okay. It's not the end of the world.

In short, I'm out to run my own newspaper, all while trying to do as little actual journalism as possible. After all, I got a day job.

Malcolm Johnson
November 7, 2008