See, I’m Still a Liberal Blogger!

The Sunday “fire up a pot of chili and ice down the keg super tailgating” edition of the TennViews weekly liberal blog roundup showcasing the best and brightest bloggers in Tennessee and what they are talking about…

• 10,000 Monkeys and a Camera: Electability: You can argue the merits of one candidate over another, but with three potential Supreme Court appointments waiting for the next president, it is absolutely essential that we elect a Democrat in November., also: The Kennedy Scorecard

• 55-40 Memphis: Can he?: Think about it. If you work in the White House and Bill stops by your desk, will you tell him politely that you take orders only from his wife?

• Ablignation (a new addition to the blogroll and roundup): Barack Obama: America’s Only Hope: With the most unfortunate departure of John Edwards from the Presidential race, we now find our Democratic selves left only with the choices the media picked for us….

• Andy Axel (at KnoxViews): McCain, Rewound…: In this process of self-re-invention, McCain is now opposing legislation that he actually championed, or worse, wrote.

• Aunt B.: My Lack of Unbridled Optimism: Since I was six years old, we’ve either had a Bush or Clinton living in the White House or next in line to live in the White House. That’s no way to run a healthy democracy.

• BlountViews (Farmer John): Fred Thompson for President?: I DEMAND A RETRACTION OF THE ENDORSEMENT!

• The Crone Speaks: Some Specific Questions for Clinton and Obama: We are left with a symbolic vote rather than a vote for real progress at a time when progress is needed most., plus: Rightwing World: A trip through the Looking Glass

• Cup of Joe Powell: Debating Politics: Perhaps Ron Paul or Mike Huckabee should consider hiring Britney Spears or Paris Hilton to their campaign staff in order to get some media attention., and A Human Digital Interface (on the Pupblish2 Tennessee election coverage project): It’s more than just adding a human editor to search engine algorithms, it’s also about how we structure and understand the world around us.

• The Donkey’s Mouth: Welcome Huckabee & Co.: The Donkey’s Mouth welcomes Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee to Nashville. … In case anyone has forgotten, The Donkey’s Mouth brings you this reminder of the last time [Huckabee campaign architect] Saltsman and SALT PAC were in the news…

• Enclave: A Late Breaking Voter Watching the Last Democratic Debate before Tennessee Votes on Tuesday: I wavered and went back and forth, but John Edwards’ withdrawal pretty much took my safety net away (although voting for him is still an option for me). So, tonight’s debate is incredibly important to my decision on Tuesday. (Ed. note: some good live blogging and commentary.)

• Fletch: Humanscapes, also: North Carolina Doing Its Part to Keep the Great Smokies Smoky

• KnoxViews: Tough choices Americans shouldn’t have to make (R. Neal): It is immoral and just plain wrong that anyone in America has to make decisions like this. Yet millions do every day., and: Obama: wrong then or wrong now?, also: Tennessee Feb 5th election certification delay, plus: Yes, We Can (mjw)

• Lean Left: Reagan Worship Good For Progressives? (Kevin): I wonder if the necessity of paying lip service to that ultra-conservative, ideologue-above-all myth of Reagan in order to impress the base makes it harder for Republicans to appeal to moderates in the general election., plus: Voter ID Laws (tgirsch): Last weekend, I pulled a little stunt to make a point about voter ID laws. I chose to use the gun rights movement as an example here, because many of their legitimate complaints about various gun control laws … apply to voter ID laws.

• Left of the Dial: Just The Two Of Us: An imaginary possible phone conversation between Mitt Romney and John McCain…

• Left Wing Cracker: Maybe he can….: Yes, I have already voted for John Edwards, and I have my reasons. However, for those of you who say that you cannot do that, and that it is down to Hillary or Barack, I will say this…

• Liberadio: Stop Spreading the (Fake) News

• Loose TN Canon: More proof that Bush weakens America: And the GOP front runner McCain wants to stay in Iraq for 100 yrs…

• NewsComa: John Edwards Asks To Remain On Rhode Island Ballot, and: The Reason I Will Vote For Barack Obama Tuesday

• Pesky Fly: Please Obama, win me: Unity is not an issue. And it shouldn’t be an issue because it’s meaningless at best and possibly antithetical to itself. (Everybody shows up to the kegger happy, but if there’s only a six-pack…).

• Progressive Nashville: Progressive Nashville: America’s path: But the most important element in determining America’s path is the people. , and, Where America Stands: The economy, Values, Health care, and The Truth

• Resonance: Shell Oil Hints At Peak Oil: We now have energy company leaders talking about the upcoming oil supply crunch. Where is the political leadership on this issue?

• RoaneViews: Official Sample Ballot (Corvus): This is an overly complicated mess for a simple choice between two groups of candidates.

• Russ McBee: With Edwards out, things shift: At least until the convention, the race between Clinton and Obama will now shrivel into two camps shouting “Hope!” and “Experience!” at each other, with little discussion of the real problems the country faces., and: Congressional Dems find more streamlined way to cave to Bush

• Sean Braisted: TNR Tennessee Rundown: The New Republic profiles Tennessee’s primary today., and: : …the truth is most people don’t pay attention to minute policy differences when choosing a candidate; like it or not, personality goes a long way in making that decision.

• Sharon Cobb: Last Night We Witnessed History: Right now my mind is flooded with all the events of the 60s I participated in, yet I’m smart enough to step to the side and let a new generation of activists take their place in this complex progression., plus: Snoop Dogg Torn Between Obama and Clinton: I know what you’re thinking. Where’s the punchline, right? ,

• Silence Isn’t Golden: California Dreamin’, On Such A Winter’s Day: And the labor unions are dreaming of the candidate who will best support labor now that John Edwards has dropped out. Who might that candidate be?, and: A Profound Sadness, And Why I’ll Always Be A Democrat: I believe that yes, it is my problem when someone in the wealthiest nation in the world can’t afford their medications.

• Southern Beale: Iraq 4 Ever: That is why those of us on the left, written off as “defeatocrats” and worse, have been saying all along that we need to cut off war funding. Period.

• Tennessee Guerilla Women: Hillary Fans in CA: ‘Yes, SHE Can!!’ (Video): As Todd notes, “her opponents underestimate the passion people have for her at their peril.”, and: Obama Attacks Universal Health Care With the Return of Harry & Louise: What the hell is Obama thinking?

• TennViews (Eleanor A): McCain on the Environment: In contrast to the media’s saintly image of Republican Senator John McCain, his voting record is that of a Reagan-era, deregulation-happy extremist., and: Democratic Presidential Candidates – Senate Voting Record Comparison (bizgrrl), plus: Super Tuesday poll preview (R. Neal), and finally: Ode to Edwards, a Wednesday roundup of reaction

• Vibinc: The War on Krugman: Working to discredit one of the only consistent liberal voices in the MSM is counterproductive to progressives, and ultimately counterproductive to Obama. Take it down a notch Barak, between this and your rabid fan-boys, you’re not winning any friends, you’re pissing a bunch of us off., and: Sports and Politics: The difference between a national party and a sports organization is that we are the stockholders of the organization. That position gives us more influence in the party than in any sports organization.

• West Tennessee Liberal: Trouble up ahead in ’08…: What is wrong with Democratic voters? I feel like we vote to lose…first Gore wouldn’t enter the race, and then the party turned on John Edwards, the banner of Democratic Party populism, who was shown to be the only Democratic candidate running who could beat any Republican.

• Whites Creek Journal: Saturday Funnies (“Don’t Tease me, Bro!”), and: I hear voices…See ’em, too… (a multimedia roundup)

• Women’s Health News: Ridiculous Lawmaker of the Day: Mayhall Wants to Ban Obese from Eating: …this is so offensive that it barely warrants explanation of the offense. Let’s have a go at it, anyway:, bonus: I’m Cranky, and These Labor Nurses Aren’t Helping

Let’s Declare Today ‘Act Like Bill Hobbs Day!’

I know, you’re thinking, “But, B.!  Today is Superbowl Sunday.  I don’t also have time to devote to Act Like Bill Hobbs Day.”

But listen, acting like Bill Hobbs seems to amount to just making sure that everyone knows what lying communists people different than him are and that Democrats, because they are different than him, are lying communistsand sending endless faxes to Liz Garrigan over at the Scene.

Well, folks, if you’re watching the Superbowl this Sunday, you are not, by definition, in the Superbowl and so the people on your television are different than you.  There will be times when you feel like yelling at some of them. 

All I ask is that, at that moment, you remember that today is also Act Like Bill Hobbs Day and you yell something along the lines of:

“You’re playing like a French anthropologist!”

“That call was a hoax!”

“You bunch of communists!”

“Probably a Democrat and the MSM just won’t tell us.”

And, if you have access to a fax machine, you might think of sending a few faxes to Liz Garrigan in the style of Hobbs.


I know what you’re saying now, “But B., isn’t Rigoberta Menchu a lying liar who lies so we can just ignore her and make some disparaging comments about the French in good conscience?”

But here’s the thing, folks.  Menchu wasn’t some timid, simple Guatemalan peasant woman telling Burgos the story of her life so that it might be written down in a version as close to the Truth as one might come and preserved for posterity.  Menchu was in the middle of a violent civil war, had lost family members to the violence, and was desperately trying to bring attention to the vast human rights violations being perpetrated during the war.

She was trying to tell a story to a person with an international audience that would spur that international audience to turn its attention to what was going on in Guatamala and help her people.

And, to an extent, it worked. 

Was it a completely factual history of her life?  No.

Was it effective propaganda?  Yes.

For that reason, you’d think the master propagandist, Hobbs, would have at least some begrudging respect for her.

My Lack of Unbridled Optimism

As I’ve pointed out, time and again, I’m not from a demographic that counts for much, been, as it is, rather small, thanks to an unfortunate series of events overseas.

And, as you’ve probably guessed, I’m voting for Obama on Tuesday.  It’s not because I think Clinton would be a bad president.  I think she’ll be a fine president.  If she gets the votes and is in the general election, I’ll happily vote for her, dancing and in-your-facing included.

But I can’t lend her my support this early for one reason–I think it would be terrible for the country to have the presidency in the hands of two families (or near the hands of said families) since 1980.  Since I was six years old, we’ve either had a Bush or Clinton living in the White House or next in line to live in the White House.  That’s no way to run a healthy democracy.

It so happens that I believe that keeping the Republicans in power would be worse, but that’s why I’m not yet on the Clinton bus.

I like Obama, but Kennedy was eleven years dead when I was born.  Even Robert was in the grave.  I have no living memory of what it was like when they were alive.  I believe that the country was much different back then, that it seemed full of promise, and that people who remember the Kennedys do feel like something’s been lost.

And so I understand, after listening to Obama speak, why, for them, he would resonate in that way.  But it doesn’t resonate for me that way.

Unbridled optimism and enthusiasm for a candidate makes me nervous.  I hear it in people’s voices and I feel like we’re rushing headlong without remembering that, at the end of the day, he’s just a man.