Friday, November 10, 2006

extending an olive branch

i have already said enough this week- so i am going to keep it short. we have an opportunity now with the democrat victory this midterm election. the past 12 years under neo con rule have been contentious, divisive and destructive. it is important to remember that not every republican is one of these divisive people, and indeed helped the democrats achieve victory throughout the entire country. without these folks, we would not be in this position today where we control the congress of america. we are not yet the united states of america- but we can be. we can reach out across the aisle and extend the olive branch. we can help the moderates retake control and maintain it- because we have to. we have political capital right now. let's not follow bush's lead and squander it. let's make peace with the moderate republicans and rebuild our country. let's not be too arrogant to say thank you.


shawn (aka blogstud) said...

Excellent post, b. I have been saying the same thing about reaching out. I just did a post on Lincoln Chafee, a real classy guy.

He said that his loss would be good for America if it helped Dems and the GOP learn how to work together.

There are some who are unreachable like Frist and Cornyn (from my state but I did not vote for the guy!) But some of the really bad ones will soon be gone--santorum. I am still stoked about that one!!!

I agree with Pelosi that considering impeachment is not a good idea. As much as I think close to 3000 unnecessary deaths warrants it, I think trying to impeach bush would do more harm than good at this point.

I do think that there should be a THOROUGH bi-partisan investigation and if even the smallest amount of dishonesty is found (and I am biting my tongue-er-fingers here) then I definitely think the House should consider censure.

I am curious what you and your readers think though, b. Do you think impeachment? censure? just an investigation?

This will be tricky for us. We want to be open and inclusive, but being a justice-minded guy, I also think bush should be formally reprimanded in some way if (again biting tongue) he was dishonest.

This, and helping come up with an effective Iraq strategy, will be the hardest thing we have to do over the next two years.

So what do you think? Where does the bi-partisanship end and the justice begin? Can we reach out to moderates AND find out the whole truth about Iraq?

Chuck said...

You guys are my buds, so I'll apologize to you before you read my comment:

The only thing that got extended to me was the middle finger as I was cut off on the highways by the bush lovers because of my bumper stickers. And there were a lot of verbal altercations- none of which were ever started by me, but I sure as hell let them have it when they jumped my ass because they supported a turd that would "disappear them" and sell their mother for a nickel in a hearbeat.

We're divided as a nation thanks to bush and we're not going to be able to "heal" or "come together" overnight.

I remember how we were treated nationally when all I heard was "You lost. Get over it."

Personally, I still have utter disgust for anyone that voted against my children in 2004.

So, I guess this will be the first time that I disagree with you guys. I can't help it. I just don't forgive that easily and I never forget.

Time said...

One thing I noticed is that the Dem. candidates are conservative Dems. These are not Shumer/Wrangle/Wellstone Dems.

The neo-cons have forced moderates out of the Rep. party and they have run as Dems.- ie. Webb.

The Dem. party and the country are more conservative than years ago.

In legislation both the Pres. and the Dems. have to produce. They will pass bills and find those issues they can agree on, like immigration. It was the Rep's. that didn't like Bush's immigration bill.

The Dems. will and should do investigations of the abuses of the past.

I hope they can make basic changes of our political system, like financing elections, taxing the people, checking capitalistic excesses and abuses, energy independence, ect., ect.......

The Future Was Yesterday said...

extending an olive branch
Will be the death of us.

I'm with Chuck. I am a Vietnam veteran with two Purple Hearts. People who never served this country for one minute, called me a traitor to my country because I opposed them. They called me a friend of terrorism. They questioned my very sanity.

Does NO ONE remember, that Congress is still filled with those very same peace loving, "extend an olive branch to all Democrats at all times" Evangelicals who called YOU friends of terrorism and traitors to your country; that called for Terri Schaivo ON THE SENATE FLOOR to be taken from her nursing home at GUNPOINT if necessary? And you want to make nice?

So do I - as long as that olive branch is taped to the loaded magazine of an AK47!!!!!!!!!!!

I apologize for getting so emotional on your blog, but People! - We absolutely MUST clean the shit out of Congress, THEN we can work together!!

Sewmouse said...

While my heart agrees with Chuck and TFWY, I think it would be a terrible mistake for the Democratic Majority (Goddess, it feels good to type that!) to take a vindictive and nasty stance.

We've been telling the Neocons and Repukes for how long that "If you lower yourself to the level of the terrorists, you become one"? We can't lower our standards to becoming the NeoconsII

By making an effort to truly right the wrongs done by the 12 years of Republican mismanagement and obstructionism, and the 6 years of attempted Dictatorship by a calm, peaceful, bipartisan-offered method, those moderates who only switched camps for this election may be won on a more permanent basis.

Yes, it's hard to look at the Republicans still in office and not want to slap them painfully - and the fact that Smirky McChimp is still in the oval office does rankle. But that can only be changed if the Democrats keep their cool and maintain a POSITIVE, UPBeat, non-hate-filled agenda. I think Ms. Pelosi has the right direction, if she can just find the strength to stick to it.

There isn't enough time for an impeachment, guys. And there isn't enough of a majority that would allow it to happen.

Right now the important thing is to stop the snowball destruction of the Constitution, give the general voting public the clear message that Democrats WILL listen to them and ARE concerned about their rights and political desires...

And then reverse the damage come 08 when we can control things and turn back the abuses of the last 6 years.

I truly believe this is a "Catch more bees with honey" kind of a moment.

carbunclefrank said...

so what if rumsfield fell on his sword for king george. An investigation is still called for. The people want to know who did what to whom and when, why, etc.
Clinton was morally deficient(to put it mildly)but he didnt cause the loss of life for some 3000 mother's children and the repubs tried their best to impeach him.
Olive branches are fine for people who feel remorse. I havent heard that from any repub fact, they are still saying we will work with you but we wont leave Iraq. Bullshit, just like nam...Let that tribal society take care of itself. dont forget; there were no terrorists there til we invaded. they were (still are) in afghanistan, syria, iran, etc.
Thy all hate us but cant live without that American dollar. Take our money away and see what happens.
we built a billion dollar pipeline from alaska to texas so the oil barons could sell american oil to europeans for 5 bucks a gallon and we could buy arabian oil for 3 bucks a gallon.
I'll pay 5 bucks for our own and they can try to sell theirs somewhere else. china and japan want it but cant afford it and it will all be gone someday anyway.
rant, rant, rant.....i'm done. thanx for the soapbox betmo. I think your blog is great.

betmo said...

no, no, no!!!! you aren't hearing what i am saying- i am saying reach out to the MODERATES- do what you want to the asshats that screwed our country. these folks are pretty much pariahs in their own party and tried to undo what they had done to the country by voting against the right. whether they are now democrats or not matters little to me. we have to settle things back down and push the fringe back into their rat holes. i am not a big leftist radical either. neo cons and their ilk are fair game. i don't know if there is time for impeachment- i would like to see the military commissions act overturned and these assholes tried for war crimes. investigation- oh hell yes! priority for me- civil liberties and iraq.

betmo said...

anyway, chuck i agree with you. i am not feeling particularly conciliatory either- and i think that folks who are that belligerent should not be tolerated. the fringe got too powerful and too arrogant and this thumpin' was the first blow. we have to keep these kind of people from reaching the highest pinnacles of power again but it is going to take leadership and strength- as well as building up the moderates. like it or not- it is the right thing to do. these folks didn't have to side with us- and many chose not to vote. they should be acknowledged and we should reach out to them- compromise not capitulate. it is the only way right now.

Peacechick Mary said...

I don't have any problem with everyday citizen republicans and there are a few politicians who have shown a reasonable slant, but - no make that a big BUT, I don't trust Bush or Cheney or any of that gang. They hold out one hand with the olive branch and the other with a machete - a bloody machete. We have no choice but to enforce the law of the land, otherwise, we are lost - a lawless country.

shawn (aka blogstud) said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
shawn (aka blogstud) said...

oops there were two typo's. here is a repost.

Yes, Chuck, I see your point, and I probably was a little murky with mine, but I agree with betmo. Like I said, some Repubs are unreachable, but then there are those like Chafee, who is on his way out of office, who actually want to work with Democrats.

I do not trust Bush either, and I do not think for a minute, and he really wants to work with us. He has to now, it is just reality.

But that is the predicament we are in and Democrats will have to decide where the line will be drawn.

I think there should be a thorough investigation. If it is not bipartisan though, many Americans will see it as purely political revenge, instead of a pursuit of truth and justice, and that would demean the investigation and our valid reasons for wanting one.

I do think Pelosi is wise to rule out impeachment, at least for now, for the same reasons. I am fairly certain that if there is an investigation, and egregious "mistakes" are discovered, there will be many calls for impeachment. I just think we need to be careful about declaring anyone guilty until they are proven so.

What worries me is that some Democrats are sounding like they do not want any investigations at all. That is why I asked the question. Yes, we need bispartisanship, but truth and justice are far more important right now.

And when I say bipartisanship, I do not at all mean capitulation, especially to the far right. What I mean, is that Republicans in Congress, and more importantly their constituents, should at least be heard.

sorry for yet another long comment. have a good weekend, all.

Chuck said...

Sorry. I did misunderstand. I was talking about the everday person out there in the everyday world- the gullibe, the blindly accepting bush lovers that supported the removal of their own rights and then blamed people like me for saying that the emperor had no clothes.

Level headed discussion was (is) impossible. We were and are completely polarized.

I was always reminded of an old saying. It is outdated because it uses only the male gender, but it describes perfectly the mindset of the people:

"A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still"

I don't know how this country will ever heal. We haven't completely healed from the "Civil" War yet and there isn't a single person living from that time. That is ridiculous. I fear that this one will be generational too.

The thing is, it's always so much easier to get along than not. That's why this whole thing is frustrating. And now that I understand what level you were talking on betmo, I agree.

But the caveat for our leaders that Peacechick Mary said so well is watching for that machete in the other hand.

But if they can go after bush & cronies for anything that they've done, I say do it- "when your enemy is down, kick him". By their actions they obviously intended harm to this country for their own gain. The unwarranted attack on a sovereign nation and the intrusion into the lives of this country's citizens coupled with the removal of rights that have stood since the birth of this nation are acts of very bad people.

Anonymous said...

The Democratic Party is becoming, again, a national party. Part of that process is reaching out to moderates and independents, working with Republicans, and instituting real reform.

But the hard right? They can, as I have stated many times, go fuck themselves. They have divided this country, repeatedly lied, attacked the independent judiciary, knowingly violated the constitution, etc. The list goes on and on.

The Democrats have some very nice options: investigate the actions of the executive, implement corruption reforms (and OBEY them), work on environmental, economic and educational reforms, and crush the hard right agenda by keeping it in committees.

But the "Republican Revolution" is over. We have a socialist senator. We have moderate, centrist Democrats and liberal, left-wing Democrats. The judicial appointments will be stalled for the next two years.

Now, finally, after 12 years, we can move on.

shawn (aka blogstud) said...

thoughtful post. I keep coming back to see what other have said.

Chuck--very well said.

I also agree with Alec. the hard right has proven themselves anything but religious and moral. yes, judicial nominations appear stalled for now.

and I hate to keep saying it but, we must win the white house next time. we may not be able to stall supreme court appointments forever.

can you all imagine a supreme court full of scalias and thomases? ack!

the democrats need to find a ticket that can win. I am not sure Hillary can, as much as I like her (but of course I would as a liberal gay guy)

Sarah said...

I'm all about extending the branch to the moderates. But I'm with everybody else on the hard right - screw 'em!