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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Why the NYS Unemployment Office is the Lowest Form of Life

     If you find my language strong you'll have to excuse me. I'm presuming you don't have the experience of being unemployed in New York and attempting to collect what you have a legal right to. I say New York because that's my experience but I'm certainly not presuming it's better anywhere else!

    As someone who has been chronically un and under-employed since 2008 the one thing that is clear is that Unemployment Insurance has completely lost it's core mission when FDR established it in the 1930s. Though we don't think of it this way now, UI is actually part of what we now call Social Security(initially Social Insurance).

    An important aspect of SS-as Nancy Altman shows in her authoritative book "The Battle for Social Security" was that the government was supposed to actively work to help citizens enforce their rights to SS. It was emphatically not supposed to erect obstacles for them to negotiate.

     In my own dealings with NYS Unemployment Insurance since March it is clear that placing obstacles is basically their job description.

      After receiving a few weeks of UI in April a few of my past employers put up various objections why they shouldn't be liable for benefits.

      Now the way Unemployment works in NY-roughly the same across the country- is that they look at your last 6 quarters-a quarter is 3 months. Your highest earnings in a quarter-you must have a minimum of 1600 in your highest quarter-but and this is how they start to really mess with you-your cumulative over the 6 quarters must be at least 1.5 times the high quarter.

      You see right away how they are trying to handicap you, if you were able to find a decent paying job(and 1600 over 3 months isn't so decent anyway-they want to penalize you if it is too much of an outlier compared with your overall earnings.

      For me I have worked for a number of different employers starting from March 2010. My main earnings however came in my time at the Census. After the Census I worked at different sales jobs.

     Some I earned a considerable amount at others only about $300-short-term.

      It took the better part of a month to get my claim to start paying because although my quarter at the Census was my highest period by far some of the subsequent employers were slow to supply information. You can fax your earning to UI but each employer still has a chance to contest your application.

     This is what a few of my old employers have done-not the Census of course. One guy-the owner of Royal Chemical in Great Neck NY, not afraid to name names, cept I fogot his name! ; didn't work with him much he was the owner-actually claimed he fired me after cathcing me outside using drugs!

     Total fabrication. Yet NYS UI asked me about it. They believed me once I explained but then some other guy in a short term job I had back in March disputed my reason for leaving. I said I had left for "lack of work" he insisted that it was because I quit-significance of this is that that would be a reason why he didn't have to contribute to my benefits.

     Even though the amount he would personally be trivial-like the guy from Royal Chemical. So this part of my claim was eventually denied-meaning in calculating my eligibility this employer could not count towards my total wages.

     Around this time I got another sales job-what I've found is that, at least for the short term this is an "industry" (telemarketing)with low barrier to entry. I originally, in another lifetime, had an accounting degree.
This job would only last 2 weeks. Me and some other guy started the same day and though I was able to make a sale on my very first call and had 3 sales after 2 weeks while he only had 1 the woman told me after week 2 that "I don't think this job is for you."

     He on the other hand she bent over backwards for even getting him an office mentor and giving him more time-who knows if he's still there... Part of my problem no doubt is she didn't think I take direction well, which is probably true, that's been a complaint about me as my recent morning on DKOS will attest!

     http://diaryofarepublicanhater.blogspot.com/2011/07/if-daily-kos-is-progressive-blog-where.html

    http://diaryofarepublicanhater.blogspot.com/2011/07/more-on-my-inauspicious-first-day-at.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+DiaryOfARepublicanHater+%28Diary+of+a+Republican+Hater%29


       Even though this job ended too early the saving grace is that I made enough money to help restart my claim. They had told me that I needed to have earned at least 5 times my weekly benefit rate-which was not much, while I probably shouldn't tell you how much I can give you a hint: the maximum benefits a week are $405. Yeah that sounds like a livable wage to me!

       So they asked that I fax them a stub to show my wages which I quickly did as you can imagine-I need money! This was in early June.

        Since then there has been one delay after another. First there was some sort of penalty for "lying" about that previous employer who said I quit. Then there was the period that my last company in May had the right to contest my reason for leaving. Perhaps I shouldn't have but felt after being burned that I had better be wholly honest and didn't try to claim "lack of work" this time but admit the woman had sacked me as "it's not for me."

     Knowing that if they contest my reason I could be in the soup again. But after giving them a long time to contest-what they would have to show to screw me on the piddly amount that would come from them(far from the total weekly amount if they would have to pay anything towards my claim for 2 weeks it would be minimal) is that I was fired not for job performance but "breaking company policy" absenteeism, or "drugs" like the owner of Royal tried to say.

     2 weeks ago yesterday-Weds, 7/13 was what I had been told was the last day they had to contest. So I called on Thurs to ask why-according to my online account-my benefits had not been released. He said he would do it then.

    However on Monday of the next week(7/18) still nothing. I called back. I got a woman who claimed they still needed proof of earnings from the job in May(I had already sent in early June as our story showed). She kept me on hold numerous times till it was almost an hour.

    Finally she came back and said that she finally found the stub I sent but that it's not enough. What about the first week? I pointed out that the stub I sent from teh 2nd week showed my cumulative earnings which demonstarte I had met criteria for wages. She said they needed to prove that I had earned all the earnings during that period and not before March-the employer that had been removed.

    Apparently they were gonna play so obtuse as to think that in a 2 week job it's plausible that I worked these 2 weeks non-concurrently! Keep in mind that

    A) I have been waiting now since early June

    B) I have a car payment seriously due which I need to pay ASAP as it may soon be repossessed.

    C) She had kept me on the phone for all told close to an hour just to tell me "We can't release your claim you have to jump through more hoops."

     D). Her overall tone was quite frankly that of a supercilious snob. "Sir I'm only doing my job." Never did she seem to think that doing her job might actually be to help me and the other millions of unemployed. rather than following some rule book.

      Delay I can't afford at this point. And there's a further annoying aspect to all this where every time you call each person seems to have no history of anything you've ever done. They seem not to be aware of previous conversations-which you'd assume would be in their computer notes-and previous actions.

      It's as if you're trying to build a car but every time you get to the garage you have to reinvent the wheel all over again.

      Everything about the Unemployment agency is about placing obstacles-exactly not how FDR desinged it. They don't help you exercise your rights: the exact opposite. To even get someone on the phone you have to go through about 6 long menus with varying wait times-sometimes a long wait.

     On the messages now they have added a delightful new one now that states that "due to the improvement in the New York economy, extended benefits are being cut by 13 weeks." Improving economy?

     About the only place it's improving is at the Unemployement office.

     I mean what I say. They are the lowest form of life. The agency itself and the people who work there-not the janitors but virtually everyone else, anyone connected with the administration of payments and claims.

     Even the website is so rudimentary it never tells you anything current about your claim. Like they are about to shut it off based on needing item x.

      If you are an employee at UI if you are a representative I have a problem with you and it's personal. Don't tell me you are only doing your job. If so you are the lowest form of life. What kind of job is it to screw with people who need help to clinically deny their claims and say "Sir please! I'm only doing my job!" You SOB!

     So how about you? Any experience with UI yourself? If you are unemployed you probably know exactly what I'm talking about. Please I'd like to hear your story.

     Have you learned any tricks of the trade that might help?

      And if you are an unemployment representative I appeal to you: Leave a comment too. Show that you aren't the jerk you seem to be. That you are concerned about the public interest. Explain to us why you do care about helping people.


      I want an honest answer? Do you take any pride in what you do or are you "just doing my job!"

      Educate us the public, why we have it all wrong!

   

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Hello Blue America!

    Thank you for joining me! As ExtremeLiberal has very kindly placed DiaryofaRepulbicanhater among his list of favorite blogs welcome to ExtremeLiberal readers! It is a great site and I read it every day as you do!

     In fact just last night/this morning I was scanning his list "WTF Has Obama Done So Far? R-rated!"
For you family people he does give you a pg version... I scrolled down the list. One thing that was interesting was the fact that under HRC-what the conservatives derisively term "ObamaCare" anyone under 65 who makes no more than 133% of the poverty line will be covered under Medicaid. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/22/your-money/health-insurance/22consumer.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&ref=policy&adxnnlx=1311747725-XHLLzzjDT34uG8Vvv9Df9g

    Now as noted above, the conservatives have derisively labeled it ObamaCare and have made opposition to it a litmus test for the GOP nomination for President. During the Congressional races of 2010, the Republicans actually ran against "cuts to Medicare" and "death panels and rationing."

      Pretty impressive Trojan horse to run against cuts to Medicare-prompting their tea baggers to declare 'keep your dirty government hands of my Medicare.' A new watershed for political illiteracy. The woman who declared this must have been a Rush Limbaugh fan. Even now it was Al Franken who gave us the best working description of Rush's show: 'it's where you get punished for knowing things' Al said. He's right, listening to Rush provided you are not a complete ignoramus is like taking a test that is graded on a reverse curve-the more you know the lower your score.

     Yet despite the fact of what HCR does-for starters as noted above, frees all who make 133% or less of the poverty line from worry by giving them guaranteed Medicaid, it was a supposed liberal site-Jane Hamsher's Firedoglake that went as far in late 2009-early 2010 as threaten any Democrat who supported HRC with a primary. Ms. Hamsher herself declared HCR so bad, so unworkable, that it was unsalavageable, better to be scrapped she argued.

     What really makes you stand up and notice in this episode, is that Jane was making an argument that had currency only with the GOP. What further stands out is where she chose to argue this and whom she made common cause with in fighting for HRC to be killed. The tea party and even an appearance on FOX News to declare it unworkable.

      For her attempts to break bread with the tea party see here:
     http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jane-hamsher/will-palin-and-the-neocon_b_456824.html

     http://washingtonindependent.com/79406/tea-partiers-working-with-firedoglake-on-hcr-whip-count
    
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2009/12/22/817902/-Tea-Party-activist-David-McKalip-agrees-with-Jane-Hamsher
    
     See also her Fox News appearnce with Steve Doocy
    http://www.newscorpse.com/ncWP/?p=1501

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9F_J_sbeU8

      This was all because of the failure to include the public option. On balance I would have preferred the public option. Nevertheless as even a cursory glance(again see http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/22/your-money/health-insurance/22consumer.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&ref=policy&adxnnlx=1311747725-XHLLzzjDT34uG8Vvv9Df9g) shows the major benefits it's beyond me to figure out how Hamsher could honestly believe having everyone under 65 making up to 133% of the poverty level and disallowing insurance companies from being able to deny people with a preexisting condition or dropping someone after they get sick-and giving insurance to up to 32 million previously uninsured Americans) would be worse than the status. quo.

      Hamsher-and her friend Salon' Glenn Greenwald-have both been believers in the "transpartisan" movement for a long time. See Greenwald's 2008 Salon article http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2008/08/08/accountability

      I do think they overrate the supposed benefits of 'transpartisanship', but let's start with the example of HCR. Hamsher worked-or at the minimum consulted with-tea party groups and argued on FOX for it to be defeated. As I noted above the fact that a liberal joined the GOP plea to go back to the drawing board just seems pretty counter-intuitive. There are those who felt her appearing on Steve Doocy was surprising enough. She no doubt would argue that if the tea baggers-or even FOX News and the GOP party establishment-agree with her there's no trouble as what matters is "principle not party."

      Fair enough, but let's consider the intellectual argument that she used in arguing against HRC on Doocy.
    
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9F_J_sbeU8

     She begins by addressing middle class America by warning that "if you like your employer health insurance" that taxes imposed by HCR "actually cause it to be worse." That they will be cut due to higher taxes, more expensive co-pays, essentially they will be more expensive to beat the cost curve.

     See how she doesn't focus on it's best features like we noted above, those under 65 who make no more than 133% of the poverty line will be covered under Medicaid or that no longer can you be denied coverage due to preexisting conditions nor can you be dropped when you get sick-overall up to 32 million new Americans will be covered under health insurance.

    She instead focuses on middle class Americans and attempts to spook them about higher taxes or co-pays. Of course as is true so often when in these kinds of discussions we talk about "the middle class" the term can be used far too broadly.  Similar, for example, to conservative opponents of the inheritance tax who claims it's a terrible burden on "small business owners" another term which can be slippery.

   Intuitively phrases like "the middle class" and "small business owners" are political winners as most people think of themselves as "middle class' and therefore the virtious, hardworking class-as opposed to the idle rich or poor-and the same goes for "small business owners" a designation the conservatives(Stephen Moore, Larrry Kudlow, as well as Jane's freind Grover Norquist) use interchangeable with "entrepeneurs" and of course "job creators."

    When Jane warns (by definiton middle class) America that if "you" like your employer provided health care, your taxes are gonna go up and this "causes it to actually be worse" who exactly does she have in mind? What income level is this "you?"

    There's no question that affluent tax payers will have to pay more taxes to fund it. But the way she presents it on FOX is, well, all too appropriate for FOX as it blurs the line between the middle class and the rich.

      As it happens beginning in 2013 "affluent families with annual income above $250,000 would be required to pay an additional 3.8 percent tax on their investment income, while contributing more to the Medicare program from their payroll taxes. And eventually, the most expensive insurance policies would be subject to a new tax. "

     Is your health insurance one of the most expensive? If not you won't be subject to a new tax.

     Again what is striking is that it is a classic Right-wing argument she makes encouraging Americans to worry that "their taxes are gonna go up" when actually it's only a small group wealthy tax payers who are gonna see a hike.

     This is the kind of argument you will see on FOX any day of the week or read on the WSJ editorial page or on the home page of the Cato Insitute. However most Americans don't see a tax hike on the wealthy to pay for more soical services as draconian. Has her friendship with Norquist effected her ideologically?

     Indeed many of the wealthy say, "I can pay more, tax me more!" to no avail-including the world's  two wealthiest men Buffet and Gates have asked.

      And of course, for the most part Jane's FDL site is full of diaryists who you would be hard pressed to come up with any scenario which they found to be too hard on the rich or taxing the rich too much.  Jane herself certainly wants to see the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy expire-as I do-so this was out of character for her borrowing from the Cato Insitute's playbook.

      Her next knock on "ObamaCare" was about drug importation, she complained that this wasn't in it. I too would have preferred it to be though it was strange to here this argument made on FOX who as the propaganda network for the GOP never has been much of an advocate for drug importation. I agree though I would have liked to see that in the bill.

     She also complained about no negotiation on Medicare part D prescription drug prices. This too I do agree I wanted to see that. One of the things we in the liberal blogosphere have suffered from in recent years-I spoke with someone who reads KOS regularly about my recent banning- see previous two posts!-
and she suggests this problem begun to really show itself in the 2007 "pie-throwing contest" (actually this was Hamsher's word at the time) surrounding the Obama-Clinton primary-is more and more visceral polarization right in the heart of supposedly Blue America.

     This is why though my blog name makes clear, Republicans are my enemy and all who want a progressive future for our country, I've had to speak to some of these conflicts in recent posts. I feel that to not do so would not ring true, to ignore a major current in today's blue state America.

     As someone who has posted-4 times so far-in the belly of the beast-I know firsthand how they feel about anyone who supports Obama at all. While they claim that we are mindless "Obamabots" incapable of criticizing the President it's actually the opposite: they simply don't allow any support for him, the idea that you can support him but not unreservedly seems to not have occurred to them.

    They take major offense at the word "firebagger" yet they have no greater pleasure than yet another post razzing "Obambots" with Lady Hamsher herself recently declaring all Obama supporters "dumb motherfuckers."

      Speaking only for myself, I have criticsms of Obama in his first term, and have always made them, some quite serious. I too actually was disappointed there was no public option and wondered if-as FDL-believes he ever tried very hard for it. It didn't seem so to me either.  And I certainly was disappointed with no drug importation from Canada and no negotiation for prescription drugs.

     As you can see then I actually agree with Hamsher, et al. on some of their criticsms of HCR. My difference is it still on balance is a marked improvement over the status quo.

     A lot of it comes down to glass half empty/half full. Sure it was not single payer(which I myself don't support) or was there a pubic option-this to me is the optimum scenario. We can test the private and public options against each other. If after this few want private insurance then people have voted with their feet.

    While I'm not a socialist it is possible that health care could be like education-even though we live in a capitalist economy we have had public education since the 19th century because this is recongized a public need which will be served best by public insitiutions. But as this is America and we are much more market based than other countries-and you do here stories that public healthcare has it's drawbacks too-namely lack of choice-the pubic option seems optimum.

     The glass is half full when you realize that liberal Democrats have sought health insurance for all starting with FDR-he was able to get everything else in his Social Insurance agenda by the 1950s-Old Age Insurance(what we think of as Social Security today was oringinally just one of the 4 pillars of FDR's vision of Social Insurance which later came to be called Social Security), Unemployment Insurance, Disability Insurance and Health Insurance(the definitve book on this is Nacy Altman's "The Battle for Soical Security)-and none to Obama was ablle to achieve it-LBJ was closest with his Medicare program which gave it at least to the old, eventually expanded to Medicaid.

    Even if you find HCR wanting-as I've made clear I find it wanting in some ways too-what the history of FDR's SS shows is that it can and will be improved upon. No reason why in the future, drug importation or prescription drug negotiaton can not be phased in. This is what happened when Medicare later phased in Medicaid and with SS itself where it originally covered so few people and promised much less than it came to.

     Even the criticsm of HCR for waiting all the way to 2014 is exactly how SS started with where it was initially supposed to wait till 1942-7 years after it's passage, eventually FDR got it started in 1940 in time for the election.

     One of the problems I have with Hamsher's forays into "transpartisanship" is she never scruples about why her strange bedfellows might join with her. This is true of her alliance with Norquist to demand that Holder go after Emmanuel-she even demanded he step down prior to any investigation. She never wondered why Norquist-whose state goal is to shrink the government till it can be drowned in a bath tub might join hands with her-who presumably feels quite differently about the role of government in a good society.

     You would think so as she has being pushing the panic buttion recently that Obama has even mentioned the possiblity of cuts in SS-never even admitting that whatever he said was vague, well too vague to please Errick Erickson or Eric Cantor.

     If Norquist has this goal for "big governemnt" isn't it likely that whatever his motivations, he must have understood them as furthering his goal of downsizing government?

     When Hamsher worked with the tea party-and though she tries to dfferentiate in this case also with the Congressional GOP leadership-did she ever consider that in taking their line: HCR has to be scrapped, we should go back to the drawing board, the reason for their position-whatever hers was-is because they didn't want a bill at all?

     Maybe she really believed it was possible to scrap the entire framework and come back to it in the near future this was not their assumption? And considering that the last time a health care proposal was defeated-Hillary's back in 1993-it took 16 years to get back on the table, that they're assumption is much more realistic than hers?

     To have scrapped HCR would have meant perhaps another close to 20 years till it got on the table again. And again, her premise that no matter what it's shortcomings could not be revised and imporved on through the years as with SS and Medicare is not easy to understand.

     Beyond that some of her alliances are with people who are just odious

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2009/12/22/817902/-Tea-Party-activist-David-McKalip-agrees-with-Jane-Hamsher
    

     
     "For those who don't know, Tea Party activist David McKalip is the Florida neurosurgeon  who sent the now famous picture of President Barack Obama as a Witch Doctor last summer. Now this teabagger leader, who describes himself as "libertarian", is reaching out to Liberal critics of the current senate bill in order to build an alliance with thim to derail the Health Care reform."

    Alliances with people like McKalip and Errick Erickson just increase the question begging.

    The reason I find the question of someone like Hamsher and her site FDL so vexing is because it honestly seems that there are people there who seem to either want the defeat of the Democrats in 2012 or who are very naively tyring to bring it about.

    I will have more to say about this presently. For now my main concern is that we must build on the real opportunity to take back the House in 2012. The GOP has so manifestly overeached since November that there is real opporunity alongside in the state recalls in places like Wisconsin, Ohio, et al.

    Honestly believe that if Obama were to lose in 2012 this country could be in for some real troubling times ahead-civil war, violence, anarchy for his defeat would more or less show there is no electoral solution to our predicament and there would be those who will see some pretty serious extra-electoral means.

    But as you can see, blue state America there is no justified reason to give in to such defeatism! Continue to do what you do, support places like Wisconsin, and elsewhere and feel free to leave links to other things we can do in your comments.

    Obviously any perspective in the comments are welcome whether you love FDL hate it, never read, it, same goes for KOS

    It seems to me that there is still a book that needs to be written about the rise of the liberal blogosphere.

    In 1998 I-as many liberals did-would be stuck listening to Limbaugh Lewisnsky-bait all day with no comparable popular medium for us.

    Now we seem to have many such mediums but they often seem to be getting away from all of us.  The closest we have for a book about all this so far is Media Matters own Erick Boehlert' "Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press" which talks about Hamsher some, actually a lot more about Daily KOS but they were first so not surprising.


    But there are a lot of chapters to write since Bohler's book, though it is good.

   
    
    

      
    

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

More on My Inauspicious First Day at Daily KOS

        Since yesterday's (non)post where I was unsummarily banned within an hour http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/07/25/997316/-Hello-KOS!?via=user

        I have had an opportunity to speak to a few people I respect who post on KOS. Seems that not many people at KOS have much sense for irony these days.

        My KOS name I gave myself-abortionondemand-is obviously(I would think)meant to be ironic. But clearly this was not how it was received. It seems that the people who wrote me up and got me banned honestly believed I was a Republican troll.

       Even knowing the different levels of people's irnonymeters surely my website here makes clear how I feel about the Republican party. 

        What I am understanding is that KOS has a lot of decent people who are honestly committed to forwarding a progressive/liberal agenda and don't get so sidetracked in the "Dump Obama" and "Obama is a Republican" theatrics of FDL.

         Unfortunately there is-as some have frankly admitted-a dearth of humor these days due to some nasty wars in the comments section which started in the Clinton-Obama primary season. In recent years things have decayed to the level of racist and homophobic insults.

        Overall I get that KOS tries to be a place where people can discuss things without "pie throwing contests" breaking out all the time in the comments section. There's something to be said for that.

        Still I do think that one can go too far to in editing out disagreeable posts or labeling them "trolls."

        This is what I for one see as a problem in today's liberal blogosphere. 13 years ago, when talk radio was the only real game in town for people to express their political views in any kind of large public forum, al you heard all day was Rush and co. Lewinsky-baiting, et al. At the time I like many liberals complained that we had no space like the dittoheads to express our views, learn and plan strategy.

       (Not that Rush has ever been a place that people learn at-to the contrary as Al Franken said it's where you are punished for knowing things. It's like a test curved in reverse)

        Yet 13 years later it seems that too often our blogosphere seems to be a double edged sword with more circular firing squads and "friendly fire" than any fighting with Red State America. No matter the reception I got on KOS I came as friend.

       This wasn't understood yet I don't feel that I was wrong so much as the overall climate is wrong-not necessarily the fault of KOS members.

        Let me go over the parts of my post that went over the biggest(LOL-being ironic again). My very name abortionondemand obviously was misconstrued as me being anti-choice:
"which is a RW phrase to make freedom of choice sound petty, I don't think we want this troll around, no matter what he writes."

       This by ezekiel. Clearly he had closed his mind even before starting. Some may argue therefore that I was wrong in using the name. I don't agree but let me explain the thinking behind it.

       The very phrase "abortion on demand" was coined or at least put into wide usage from Rush Limbaugh himself. See his "The Way Things Oughta Be" and "See I Told You So." The idea was that all liberals and "feminazis" want are abortions, are perversely committed to seeing that as many abortions are performed as possible, they are wantontly committed to "abortion on demand"-again his phrase.

       My point in using the word is an example of using a term meant to be derogatory and turning it around on Rush, Terry Nichols(the dangerous prolife extremist from Operation Rescue). Basically it's an example of reappropriating a term of disempowerment and makinjg it an empowering word. The idea is you try to insult me, but I turn it around on you.

     Basically "abortionondemand" is meant to mock the hyperbolic and exaggerated claims of the pro-lifers that we liberals and feminists all want "abortion on demand."

     I've always wanted to use that name to mess with Red State America, turns out that Blue State America doesn't do irony as well as I assumed either.

     Similarly, "Obamabots and firebaggers" was meant as a-self-depreceating-joke as I am called an Obamabot on FDL and it seems that we liberals have now managed to put ourselves into this divide of "are you an Obamabot or a firebagger."

     To think that I say this as a Righty is clearly wrong-I don't know that the GOP knows anything about Obamabots and firebaggers-at least I'm hoping not.

http://my.firedoglake.com/candide08/2011/07/24/is-fdl-made-up-of-firebaggers-who-have-all-gone-hamsher/#comment-322
       

     Someone who calls himself RoberDumas actually posted: "
candide08,
When push really does come to shove…..and that day, and whatever is going to trigger it…..are fast approaching……my belief is that Tea Party Members will be standing shoulder to shoulder…..with us progressives.
While people like you will still be casting about looking for someone to engage in a futile debate about semantics, or self-righteous placement of blame on some faction whom you are content to endlessly define and redefine, as if that is productive time well spent.
There are the top 5-6% that comprise the plutocracy, and then there are the rest of us.
What I’d like to ask you is this : WHOSE SIDE ARE YOU ON?"

     Some of the firebaggers actually have come to see themselves as on the same side as the teabaggers over and against the Obamabots. Some actually reccommend working with the GOP to help the Dems lose in 2012. http://my.firedoglake.com/metamars/2011/07/19/how-a-spectrum-of-progressives-dem-supporters-dem-haters-can-synergistically-protect-ss-medicare/

    Note that this is the same fellow who gave us the afro-reeducation plan to "educate" Black America"
http://my.firedoglake.com/metamars/2011/05/18/a-seriously-trouble-making-proposal-dear-cornel-west-and-new-progressive-alliance/

    "Whose side are you on" is clearly a question that seems harder and harder to answer in today's liberal blogosphere.

     But nature abhors a vaccum. There is a real hunger out there where liberals can really learn, strategize, and do some good-like support Wisconsin for starters or the banks that MSNBC did.

     In speaking with some KOS members off the record I know some of these good things happen there.

     But the overall climate of suspicion and not even knowing "whose side are yon on?" has created a chilling effect on dialogue in general I believe. What I'm interested is in rectifying the problem.

    If I have any overriding criticism of FDL it's that there are no solutions provided just endless descriptions meant to impress you with how "hell in a handbasket" everything is.

    Solutions is what BlueAmerica needs.

    You have the floor!


  

Monday, July 25, 2011

If Daily KOS is a Progressive Blog Where is the Free Speech?

     As someone who has spent a good deal of time on FDL being called Obamabot who should try KOS I thought I would try it out today.

     After all the Fdlers told me I would love it over at KOS. So I gave it a try. I wrote a short post with a simple message to the Daily KOS community: Hello.

      http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/07/25/997316/-Hello-KOS!?via=blog_799100#comments

      I got some quick comments to this post as I have gotten to all my FDL posts

      http://my.firedoglake.com/descartes/  For all my FDL posts


       Now right away I was asked what do I expect with a post like this? My answer to him was I don't know but I was just following the suggestion of the Fdlers who I know would not lead me astray. They said I would find a good home at KOS and I believe them.

       However based on the response, FDL is not the only place where they play the troll card. In fact at KOS they find it really funny to call people trolls and then leave recipe ingredients. Takes all kinds. I would never want to get in the way of any one's fun no matter how parsed it might seem to me.

        If FDL is not the only place that the anything anyone doesn't like is hit with the troll card, it is not the only place where the irony challenged congregate in large numbers.

        "Given the uname 'AbortiononDemand' 
which is a RW phrase to make freedom of choice sound petty, I don't think we want this troll around, no matter what he writes."which is a RW phrase to make freedom of choice sound petty, I don't think we want this troll around, no matter what he writes" declares a KOSer with the biblical name of Ezekial.


         Now the troll comments are mostly fun I take it with a big ol grain of salt. I mean all "troll!" really means is they don't like your post which is therefore "disruptive." 

        But the above comment suggests that old Ezekial was unhappy with my name, serioulsy thinking I am a Right-winger rather than ironically using the attacks of the Right wing ironically against the Right wing.

        I wasn't actually trying to make a woman's right to choose sound petty but rather those who attack a woman's right to choose but Ezekial's irony meter obviously has disintegrated through it's lack of use.

        Rush Limbaugh actually made this phrase popilar starting in the early 90s and I was using it to mock the overstatement of it: the idea that all liberals and feminists want nothing but abortion all the time, as many as possible, on demand. See-irony.

         Another comment by someone who calls themself "pudytat" declares "trolls are dumb." It must be understood that I have no problem with such name-calling except one: by this time my mike had been shutoff.

          Land of Enchantment gloats that I was " 'Banned within an hour or two.'" of posting this silliness"

          Yet he calls himself the land of enchantment? Sounds pretty disenchanting.  If my post was so silly why ban it so quickly, and continue to cowardly name call after I was banned?

          This question of course I can't get Land to answer because of course I've been banned.

           Back in 1998 I used to complain we liberals have no media of our own as I'd listen to Rush spend the whole day Lewinsky-baiting. It had seemed with the rise of the liberal blogs on the internet we libs had arrived.

           A morning on the Daily KOS unfortunately makes me question this.

           While Red State America trails it's sights on Blue State America, progs mostly fight themselves.

           If you have any doublt check up the latest from Jane as she savages Obama with WSJ talking points.

           http://fdlaction.firedoglake.com/2011/07/24/the-return-of-barack-obama-and-the-art-of-negotiation/#comment-152677


            Ironic the KOS is so protective of FDL when FDL razzes them so much!

        

            In all the comments about "trolls are dumb" which takes credit when I can't answer, I did receive this one interesting hint by punditican

             " Gotta remember you can't use the term
"firebagger" on anti-Obama sites likee dkos, fdl, etc.
Precisely like, I would imagine, you can't use the term "teabagger" on stormfront, freerepublic, etc..
So yah.... dkos isn't QUITE as religiously anti-Obama as fdl, but that's really like saying Magic Johnson isn't QUITE as tall as Lebron.
Kevin dropped his ice cream and blames Obama? He's gone hamsher! "

         I have spoken to some people-anonymously-that they are at KOS and get my point but they do prefer to tell anonymously. Liberals if we have any shot we need to own our own blogs.           

          If anyone can speak firsthand about these unfortunate politics please educate us

          I can always give you the voice changer if necessary! LOL