Some crisis links (11.14.2008)

The New York Times reports that, for the proposed lame duck session next month, the Congressional Republicans will fail to produce support sufficient to pass an automobile industry bailout bill. The stimulus package proposed by the President-elect and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) also appears on shaky ground, once again due to a lack of Republican support.

Paul Krugman, on the other hand, believes the economic crisis is dangerous enough that it warrants a $600B stimulus program as a remedy.

In what must be considered additional and compelling evidence that Barack Obama's victory over John McCain was just another triumph of the Democratic Leadership Council over the progressive wing of the Party, Andrea Mitchell, Keith Olbermann and the Associated Press reported yesterday that the Obama transition group is considering Senator Hillary Clinton for the Secretary of State post.

Sharing my grim judgment is Glen Greenwald's latest piece, where he writes:

It is worth remembering that the Democrats who are going to exert dominant political control are the same ones who have provoked so much scorn — rightfully so — over the last several years, and particularly since 2006. This is the same Democratic Party leadership which funded the Iraq War without conditions (and voted to authorize it in the first place); massively expanded the President's warrantless eavesdropping powers; immunized lawbreaking telecoms; enacted the Patriot Act and then renewed it with virtually no changes; didn't even bother to mount a filibuster to stop the Military Commissions Act; refrained from pursuing any meaningful investigations of Bush lawbreaking; confirmed every last extremist Bush nominee, from Michael McConnell to Michael Mukasey; acquiesced to even the worst and most lawless Bush policies when they were briefed on them; and on and on and on. None of that has changed. That is still who they are.

The occasion for Greenwald's reflections: The effort to rehabilitate the vile Senator from Connecticut, Joe Lieberman, a pariah among Democrats in his own state!

This [bizarre effort to keep Lieberman a Democrat] reveals much about the Beltway mentality. Politicians are not only permitted, but actually encouraged, even required, to scorn the Left. There's even an adoring term for that ("Sister Soljauh") which is almost unanimously considered a truly shrewd and honorable thing to do. By stark contrast, merely replacing someone in the position of a deeply influential Chairmanship who has strayed way too far to the Right and turned himself into a leading advocate for the most wretched policies is considered horribly divisive.

If one wishes to consider another option, one which does not end in the back pocket of the Democratic Party, click here.

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