Thank You Democrats
By: Mark W Adams

At least the 105 128 of you (thanks Larry), including my representative Marcy Kaptur, who stood firm against the lawless imperialism of the Bush administration and voted no on giving the Telecoms immunity in the FISA bill. (The yeas and nays are here, HT Hilzoy.)

Thanks as well to the sole republican brave enough to buck his party and vote against this travesty as well, Timothy V. Johnson (R-Illinios-15).

This vote effectively split the Democrats in half, 105 128 patriots who stood up for the rule of law against 128 105 capitulators, including the leadership, Pelosi, Hoyer, Emannuel. Those 105 128 are going to need all the help they can get. I'm not sure the Act Blue idea of punishing those who followed the leadership's cue is as important as supporting those who did the right thing -- cuz they're going to need it.

Or maybe they're just in safe enough seats they can afford to hold the liberal line. I know that the core Northern Ohio progressives, (Kaptur, Kucinich, Tubbs-Jones) are in no real danger of losing their seats, and Blue Dogs like Zack Space, a Democrat in a very conservative district, was never going to go along with anything that even hinted he was "soft" on terrists. None of this should be a surprise.

The reason is simple. other than the bumper-sticker mentality that has been mastered by the fear-mongering GOP, this issue simply doesn't resonate with the public at large. They don't know, like you should, why FISA matters so much.

Since all signs still point towards another wave election, and possibly a '32 type realignment, funding the liberal wing of the party may not be all that productive right now, but it's advance thinking (as the blogosphere always seems to do), putting in place a new framework to push for new leadership, or at least a new direction for 2010, and remaking the very sole of this nation by 2012.

Maybe that's even too short-sighted. The GOP spent 40 years institutionalizing the politics of fear and loathing.

I probably am conditioned by the loathing to loath sending up challengers against every Democrat who won't toe our progressive line as Glenzilla and the Kossacks advocate. My reflexes are even more attuned against dis'ing the party's nominee for his silence -- since just six months ago my rallying cry was Silence Is Betrayal.

John Edwards, recalling MLK's message of resistance to war:

As he put it then, there comes a time when silence is a betrayal -- not only of one's personal convictions, or even of one's country alone, but also of our deeper obligations to one another and to the brotherhood of man.

That's the thing I find the most important about the sermon Dr. King delivered here that day. He did not direct his demands to the government of the United States, which was escalating the war. He issued a direct appeal to the people of the United States, calling on us to break our own silence, and to take responsibility for bringing about what he called a revolution of values.

A revolution whose starting point is personal responsibility, of course, but whose animating force is the belief that we cannot stand idly by and wait for others to right the wrongs of the world.

And this, in my view, is at the heart of what we should remember and celebrate on this day. This is the dream we must commit ourselves to realizing.

To quote words even more familiar, while the Democrats struggle to gain a true majority, one both filibuster and veto proof, before they can solidify their gains, while they are still vulnerable enough not to take the progressives for granted . . .
If not us, who? If not now, when? ~RFK

Support the 105 128, and fight the capitulators. You want to send a message? This is how.