Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Lanny Davis Blames Progressives For Promoting Things Voters Actually Want

The post-special election common wisdom is that Democrats need to move more to the right, because voters just rejected the progressive wing of the party.

This is bullshit. The voters (or, more precisely, half the voters of Massachusetts) just rejected the Democratic Party's first year of complete control of Washington.

But what did that Democratic Party do? It did everything that center/right/corporatists wanted, and did nothing that true liberals wanted:

  • It transferred unprecedented sums of money to Wall Street, with no meaningful regulations or strings attached.
  • It shot down single payer health care reform right from the start, forcing progressive to accept first a public option, then a triggered option, then replaced the option with expanded medicare, and then told progressives to go fuck themselves and left them with nothing.
  • It passed a Senate health bill that would mandate that people buy insurance from hated insurance companies, without even preventing those companies from screwing their own customers.
  • It escalated the war in Afghanistan.
  • It fought every effort to hold people accountable for torture and murder of innocent prisoners.
  • It fought transparency at nearly every step.
  • It caved on the stimulus bill of sufficient size.
  • It has done nothing meaningful for the millions of homeowners facing foreclosure, while bailing out the banks that got us into this mess.
  • It failed to close Guantanamo.
  • It did not end "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"
  • It has not ended the war in Iraq.

Despite all this, Lanny Davis wrote a column today in the WSJ entitled "Blame the Left For Massachusetts," in which he blames progressives for passing health care reform which most progressives hate because it was compromised into worthlessness so as to meet with the approval of corporate lackies like Lanny Davis. Many progressives, in fact, are actively trying to defeat this bill.

The Democratic Party, while whoring itself out out Wall Street, Big Insurance, Big Pharma, and Big Defense, blew its mandate of change. The policies above that progressives have championed, but that the  Democrats have ignored, is wildly popular with average citizen across the political spectrum. The public option, for example, enjoyed massive support, yet was killed by people like Lanny Davis, who now pretend that people didn't like it.

Here's what just happened over the last year:

1.) The Democrats won a landslide election by promising to pass a progressive agenda.
2.) After being elected, they broke every one of those promises to progressives.
3.) Now the voters are pissed off because the Dems sold them out to the corporations and elite.

And Lanny Davis writes a column full of lies in the WSJ, claiming that it's all of the progressive policies that the administration has gotten enacted which pissed off the voters.

What progressive policies, Lanny? You know those policies that voters hate? They're yours.

In his column, Davis makes the ludicrous claim that he is a liberal. Davis' political leanings would be more appropriately labeled "financial", because he'll say anything for the money. As Glenn Greenwald wrote about Davis back in August:

If Lanny Davis were just another Beltway lobbyist/lawyer piggishly feeding off our political system by serving whatever corporate interests happen to rent him, all of this would be too common to bother noting. But Davis parades around as -- and is treated by media organizations as being -- some sort of political pundit as well. He's presented by numerous media outlets as an independent analyst who opines on the news of the day -- yet does so almost exclusively in order to promote the interests of those who are paying him, relationships which are often undisclosed. Here's how he describes himself to clients and potential clients onhis bio page at the firm, Orrick, where he's a partner:
He has been a regular television commentator and has been a political and legal analyst for MSNBC, CNN, Fox Cable, CNBC and network TV news programs. He has published numerous op-ed/analysis pieces in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post and other national publications.
In other words, if you pay Davis to shill for you, he's able to exploit those media platforms to advocate for your interests while pretending to be an "analyst." When the Israel Project issued a Press Releaseannouncing his hiring in the middle of the Israel-Gaza war, they pointedly touted that he "is Available Immediately for Interviews on Israel/Gaza and More." Though his service to the Israel Project was volunteer work, that's how it works in general: you drop coins in the slot in Davis' back and he dutifully goes forth on television and in newspapers and recites what you feed him. 

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