Civil Rats Are Human Rats!

gettysburgh

I watched the movie Gettysburg again the other day. It is one of my favorites because the producer was a Mexican American and it is about the real reasons why democracy exists. In the movie, there is a scene where a New Hampshire officer is talking to two rebel soldiers. He asks them why they [...]

Can Obama Build A Grassroots Health-Care Movement?

plouffe

As insurance companies and health-care conglomerates ramp up opposition to real reform, activists must build a real grassroots movement that forces Congress to do the right thing. On June 6, the Obama Administration is launching an effort to accomplish this. It is making its greatest push yet to use its “Organizing for America” operation to [...]

Obama Betrays Liberals

Lt. General Stanley McChrystal

America’s liberals stand betrayed. Their new president, the one they sweated to elect — a brilliant, charismatic leader with a professional background in constitutional law — has transmogrified himself from the champion who denounced in his campaign the illegalities of the Bush White House into a president bent on their perpetuation. Liberals are stunned by [...]

Community Organizer Obama Asks Activists: “Where’s Your Base”?

organizer_obama

Some activists excited about Barack Obama’s community organizing background forget what this fully means – namely, that he expects groups seeking progressive measures to mobilize their base. Community organizers do not expect politicians to challenge entrenched interests absent grassroots pressure, and President Obama is not about to spend political capital on issues like Afghanistan, the [...]

Marcy Winograd Kicks Off Congressional Race

winograd

Marcy Winograd is kicking off her congressional campaign on Monday, May 11th, at 4 PM, at the VENICE PIER (Washington Blvd. and Ocean Front Walk/Boardwalk). Park on Washington Blvd., a side-street, or in the pier parking lot ($5.00). For those who want to avoid parking fees, meet up at 3:30 pm sharp with members of [...]

Friday Feedack: Dorothy and the Land of Oz, Indeed

Every Friday the LA Progressive features a comment that was particularly noteworthy. This week we are featuring a comment submitted by Wayne Williams, commenting on “The Walled Garden: Fading Away at the California Democratic Party,” by Brad Parker. Wayne writes: “Those of us who have watched the machinations of the party leadership parade before us [...]

The Walled Garden: Fading Away at the California Democratic Party

empty-promises

Like Dorothy and her intrepid trio of lovable dreamers arriving at Oz, the Progressive Movement barreled into the Democratic Party in 2005 with high ideals and even higher hopes. Now, four scintillating years later we realize it was all a mirage of our own creation. The Party of the Left has been reduced to an [...]

The Obama Progressive Agenda: A Progress Report

obama

Although progressives have already won two major victories – the stimulus package and the budget – and a reversal of a number of Bush anti-environment policies, most activists are focused on the troika of universal health care, the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), and comprehensive immigration reform. Having asked activists across the nation over the [...]

Blue Dog Democrats and Republican Triangulation

pet-republicans

Senator John McCain’s daughter, Meghan McCain, has served up a devastating critique of the direction the Republican Party has taken recently. “If figureheads like Ann Coulter are turning me off,” Ms. McCain writes, “then they are definitely turning off other members of my generation as well.” She understands that when the GOP’s dominant personalities are [...]

Lessons of President Obama’s First Two Weeks

presidentobama

It’s been less than two weeks, but patterns have emerged that are likely to continue throughout Barack Obama’s presidency. First, Obama understands how to use the media. Examples are detailed below, but the best is the widespread media story last Thursday about how the usually cool Obama “lost it” — in front of cameras and [...]

Wiped? Back to Work

falling-uncle-sam

This past Sunday I ran for re-election as a Delegate to the California Democratic Party (CDP). I was on the Progressive Slate, from the 42nd Assembly District which covers parts of LA and the San Fernando Valley. Two years ago when I first ran, local progressive Dems were fired up and ready to give the [...]

On Obama, the Hate-Filled Pastor, and Unity

Barack Obama and Rick Warren

The progressive and GLBT communites are up in arms over President-elect Obama’s decision to have antigay, right-wing Christian evangelical preacher Rick Warren deliver his inaugural invocation. I share their dismay to be sure, but you know, whatever. Chalk Obama’s decision up to his move to try and create a landscape that appears to include everyone, [...]

On Cabinet Picks, Obama Savvier than Progressive Critics

obamacabinet

by Randy Shaw – As Barack Obama’s Cabinet fills with Clinton Administration veterans, some are raising concerns why no “movement progressive” has been selected. Hillary Clinton’s appointment as Secretary of State galvanized fears that Obama’s cabinet is unduly “centrist,” a concern amplified by the daily parade of predominately white male Clinton veterans in the “possible [...]

Is It 1932 or 1952?

colleen_doody

by Colleen Doody – In the wake of Barack Obama’s historic victory, the question arises of whether we are witnessing a fundamental realignment in American politics. Does 2008 mark the “end of the conservative era” as Pat Buchanan claimed? Or will this election, like Bill Clinton’s before it, be a Democratic interlude in the midst [...]

Can We?

alinsky

by Wendy Block – “I can’t go on. I’ll go on.” — “The Unnamable” by Samuel Beckett Yea us! Americans just spent over a billion in time, energy and dollars and changed our government.

End the War on Immigrants: Bringing It All Back Home

wall at the border

When the Bush administration came up with a special classification, “enemy combatant,” and a special site—Guantánamo—to put prisoners beyond the purview of human and legal rights, I had a shock of recognition. The trial run had taken place right here in the US when we threw due process out the window for that other special [...]

Obama Transition (So Far) Not Friendly to Progressives

barack obama and hillary clinton

by Natalie Davis – True progressive voters had a couple of actual progressive options in the November 4 election. They could have gone with Green hopeful Cynthia McKinney or Independent candidate Ralph Nader. We knew Barack Obama was no progressive messiah — his No on Prop 8 and anti-marriage-equality tap dance and flip-flops on FISA [...]

Good Bye Neoconservatives. Hello to Their Liberal Brethren?

The media and the Washington foreign policy elite breathed a sigh of relief when Barack Obama thumped John McCain in the election. Had John McCain won, there was always the chance that the neoconservatives would have beaten out the Republican realists for his foreign policy soul. With a victory by the liberal Obama, however, the [...]

Beyond Red and Blue

by Diane Lefer – Barack Obama says we have never been a collection of Red States and Blue States, and after his election, I heard from friends and relatives—progressives all–who live in places like Alabama, Alaska, and Kentucky all saying we are here, too, along with millions of others working for change in the so-called [...]

I Stand Corrected

Let me be among the first to congratulate my friends who always believed that Senator Barack Obama would win the election for the Presidency. As most of you know, I was on record one year ago stating that it was my firm belief that America was a country beset by discrimination. Furthermore, that this stain [...]

If You’re Thinking of Voting for Third Party and Help Elect McCain and Palin, Here’s Who You Empower

To underscore that voting third party or not voting at all will help elect McCain and Palin, and thereby re-empower the self-righteous ideologues who berated progressives, liberals, democrats, greens, libertarians, etc., for the past 8 years while their leaders were on board, I’ve asked my fantastic vlogger collaborator, Sharona L. Smith (VoiceOfAmericans2008), to compile a [...]

“I’m Not George Bush!”

Said NBC’s Rachel Maddow, “frankly, John McCain looks more like he does not want Obama to be President more than he wants to be President.” That’s a problem progressives know too well. It’s the same way we didn’t vote FOR Kerry, rather AGAINST Bush in 2004. The reason we see so many “undecided voters” this [...]

A Progressive Foreign Policy for the 21st Century

by John Peeler – The recent crisis between Georgia and Russia, and the ineffectually truculent response of the Bush administration, illustrate the utter bankruptcy of the Bush foreign policy, and the need for a fundamental reexamination. At the same time, there is little in the campaign rhetoric of Barack Obama — and none whatever in [...]

Xavier Becerra Turning the Ship

“If I asked for a show of hands on impeachment, I know what I’d get,” Congressman Xavier Becerra told the jubilant crowd of 100 or more packed into the new local Democratic Party headquarters in Highland Park this past Wednesday night. “You’re a bunch of liberals—progressives. There would be 150 hands in the air saying, [...]

Progressive Values Stories: Gavin Newsom on Inclusivity and Noah’s Ark

gavin_newsom-thumb

We are trying to construct a more inclusive society. We are going to make a country in which no one is left out. — Franklin D. Roosevelt I interviewed San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom about what he personally feels are the most important progressive values. He mentioned several progressive values, such as, Interdependence, Stewardship, Empathy [...]

If We Surrender The Terrorists Will Win!

Chess Pieces

For the last several months, I have received phone calls and a zillion emails about the Hillary issue. I supported the move to get the Democratic Party Florida delegation seated before any other Democratic National Committee (DNC) member outside of Florida signed on. I argued that the DNC Rules Committee did not have the authority [...]

Dignity – A Unifying Value for the Democratic Party

Cutout dolls

Democrats acknowledge the need to clarify their core values. Crashing the Gate by Jerome Armstrong and Markos Moulistas Zuniga calls for a conceptual breakthrough, but the grassroots/netroots process it describes falls short of providing the unifying idea that Democrats seek.

Who’s a Progressive?

Broke Democracy

Too often in recent discussions I’ve seen us focus on the “cult of personality” and avoid the core of the progressive movement—“policy.”

Failed Conservative Values: Congresswoman Maxine Waters on Blame, Hate & Lying

Edwin Rutsch

I interviewed Congresswoman Maxine Waters and asked her about progressive and conservative values. In this section, Maxine mentions that conservatives have tricked people with the failed conservative values of blame, hate and lying. These values are also failing because more people are not following them anymore and in fact, people are starting to turn toward [...]

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