Historic Day

 Posted by at 21:17  Election 2004
Jun 302003

A brief announcement from Joe Trippi, Campaign Manager, Dean for America:

$7 Million and a $700,000 Day!

As of 10:00 PM ET, Howard Dean has raised $697,128 online today, bringing our total for the quarter to $7,004,356.

With a few hours left to go before the closing deadline for our fundraising report to the FEC, you did it. You raised $700,000 in one day over the Internet and put Howard Dean over $7 million.

In 9 short days, tens of thousands contributed over $3.8 million to Dean for America. $3 million of that came in online contributions.

As Governor Dean said in his announcement speech, “We are the great grassroots campaign of the modern era, built from mouse-pads, shoe leather and hope.”

For months you have helped us build that grassroots campaign — a campaign that seeks to build a new politics of meaning for our country and a new kind of campaign powered by people. No one really seemed to notice until today. Your efforts today were amazing and in my view historic. There is simply no precedent for this kind of response over the Internet — in contributions and support this early in the process — for any other candidate I can think of from either party.

Congratulations, America!

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Hasn’t a clue

 Posted by at 14:42  Election 2004
Jun 302003

The best reason in the world to contribute to the Howard Dean campaign: George W. Bush.

Who Lost the WMD?

Meeting last month at a sweltering U.S. base outside Doha, Qatar, with his top Iraq commanders, President Bush skipped quickly past the niceties and went straight to his chief political obsession: Where are the weapons of mass destruction? Turning to his Baghdad proconsul, Paul Bremer, Bush asked, “Are you in charge of finding WMD?” Bremer said no, he was not. Bush then put the same question to his military commander, General Tommy Franks. But Franks said it wasn’t his job either. A little exasperated, Bush asked, So who is in charge of finding WMD? After aides conferred for a moment, someone volunteered the name of Stephen Cambone, a little-known deputy to Donald Rumsfeld, back in Washington. Pause. “Who?” Bush asked.

Not only is Mr. Bush incapable of finding any weapons of mass destruction in Iraq (the main justification we were given for going to war with that country), he doesn’t even know who in his administration is in charge of finding them.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again — the man is as dumb as toast.

Top that off with the fact that his perpetual “war on terrorism” is an obvious failure, and you’ve got every reason in the world to replace him with somebody in whom we can place our trust and confidence.

Kabul back as terror hot spot

Less than two years after the US-led Operation Enduring Freedom, Afghanistan is re-emerging as a terrorism hotspot on radar screens.

A spate of attacks and an increase in intercepted electronic ‘chatter’ indicate that the Al-Qaeda network could be re-establishing its foothold there.

Intelligence officials said this communication buzz and tapes reportedly released by Mullah Mohammed Omar, former leader of the Taleban, suggest that Osama bin Laden has renewed his partnership with it. The Taleban have been regrouping in the far-flung areas of the country.

The Al-Qaeda has also formed new tie-ups with outfits such as the Hizbi Islami of renegade Afghan warlords like Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. Some of its members, who had fled to Pakistan in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, are beginning to return.

It’s time we had a true leader in America. It’s time for Howard Dean!

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Call me!

 Posted by at 12:42  Election 2004
Jun 302003

People-Powered Howard Report

As of 1 PM ET, Howard Dean has raised $226,929 online today, bringing our total for the quarter to $6,534,157. Today, we have had almost 1,000 repeat donations for this quarter.

Howard Dean will personally call 5 donors, selected randomly, who contribute on the Internet today. (You will receive a thank you email through which you will be able to supply your phone number.)

How would it be to receive a personal phone call from the future President of the United States? You know they have my number!!

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Your help is needed!

 Posted by at 04:13  Election 2004
Jun 302003

Fund-Raising Puts Dean in Top Tier of Contenders

Howard Dean announced yesterday that he had raised close to $9 million this year, establishing himself as a top-tier candidate in the Democratic presidential field. The figure stunned his rivals and transformed Dr. Dean from a maverick into a more traditional contender.

Much of the money was collected over the Internet, his aides said, leaving little doubt there are now ways to solicit contributions other than the telephone calls and elaborate fund-raisers that are the stock and trade for most mainstream candidates.

Dr. Dean’s aides said he would report raising at least $6.2 million in the three-month period that ends at midnight, on top of $2.6 million he raised over the first three months of the year. Dr. Dean announced the figure 36 hours before the filing period ends, timing the release for a slow-news Sunday afternoon.

“We are thrilled,” Dr. Dean’s campaign manager, Joe Trippi, said. “Right now our new goal is $6.5 million by midnight tomorrow.”

The other campaigns said yesterday that they would wait until the fund-raising period was over before releasing their results.

“He’ll beat everybody,” Steve Elmendorf, a senior adviser to Representative Richard A. Gephardt of Missouri, said of Dr. Dean.

I realize the campaign says the goal is $6.5 million, but I really think we can do at least $7 million. What do you say? We have until midnight tonight, so please contribute now! Help Governor Dean take our country back!

Linguistic lesson

 Posted by at 01:02  Politics
Jun 302003

Dr. Renana Brooks, in this article written for The Nation, states:

To create a dependency dynamic between him and the electorate, Bush describes the nation as being in a perpetual state of crisis and then attempts to convince the electorate that it is powerless and that he is the only one with the strength to deal with it. He attempts to persuade people they must transfer power to him, thus crushing the power of the citizen, the Congress, the Democratic Party, even constitutional liberties, to concentrate all power in the imperial presidency and the Republican Party.

Bush’s political opponents are caught in a fantasy that they can win against him simply by proving the superiority of their ideas. However, people do not support Bush for the power of his ideas, but out of the despair and desperation in their hearts. Whenever people are in the grip of a desperate dependency, they won’t respond to rational criticisms of the people they are dependent on. They will respond to plausible and forceful statements and alternatives that put the American electorate back in touch with their core optimism. Bush’s opponents must combat his dark imagery with hope and restore American vigor and optimism in the coming years. They should heed the example of Reagan, who used optimism against Carter and the “national malaise”; Franklin Roosevelt, who used it against Hoover and the pessimism induced by the Depression (“the only thing we have to fear is fear itself”); and Clinton (the “Man from Hope”), who used positive language against the senior Bush’s lack of vision. This is the linguistic prescription for those who wish to retire Bush in 2004.

We have to remember this as we go about the task of removing Mr. Bush from the White House in 2004. He is an extremely negative and pessimistic person, as you can prove by listening to any of his speeches. We have to counter this with an optimistic message. I think Governor Dean is well on his way to doing this when he declares “You have the power!”

How does Mr. Bush plan to campaign? The New York Times reports:

By early next March, Democrats will probably have settled on a nominee for president.

At that point, with no opposition in the primaries, President Bush’s re-election campaign is expected to begin spending the massive amount of money it is raising to paint an unfavorable picture of the Democratic candidate in voters’ minds and to establish the terms of the fall contest in a way that benefits the president.

He does not plan to present himself in a favorable or positive manner (which would be nearly impossible to do, anyway), but he instead plans to paint an unfavorable picture of his opponent. Again, negativity will rule. The Democratic party must resist the temptation to sink to the low level that Mr. Bush will set and continuously accentuate the positive in their positions and candidate.

America right now is a dark and gloomy place. It’s time to make it a bright and happy place again!

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Fun with funds

 Posted by at 22:57  Election 2004
Jun 292003

Dean Campaign to Report Raising $6M

Democrat Howard Dean’s presidential campaign said Sunday it has taken in $6 million in the past three months, fund raising the former Vermont governor attributed to support from people not previously involved in politics.

“We’re bringing in a ton of new people,” he said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press between fund-raisers in New Hampshire.

Dean and the eight other Democrats running for president in 2004 are racing to show their fund-raising prowess in campaign finance reports for the second quarter, which closes Monday.

“My guess is when you see the report it will be a lot of small donors … these are ordinary people who’ve been waiting for someone to say what they’ve been thinking,” Dean said.

Actually, I would not be too surprised to see us hit the 7 million dollar mark. We still have a whole day!

The media is making a big deal out of the fact that Bush is raising a lot more money than any Democratic candidate, or even all of them combined. Let’s look at the facts, shall we?

Dean: Small donations, from a lot of people.
Bush: Huge donations, from a few “fat cats.”

“Do please remember to leave this suitcase full of money with the concierge, Jeeves.”

Thankfully, in America, it is still “one person, one vote.” The votes of the fat cats do not count any more than ours do. When it comes election time, I think Mr. Bush will find that a lot more ordinary Americans (whom he has screwed mightily while pandering to the fat cats) will vote than will fat cats.

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Bush’s Vietnam(s)

 Posted by at 22:19  Politics
Jun 292003

Afghanistan and Iraq — Bush’s Vietnam

By John Pilger

America’s two “great victories” since 11 September 2001 are unravelling. In Afghanistan, the regime of Hamid Karzai has virtually no authority and no money, and would collapse without American guns. Al Qaeda has not been defeated, and the Taliban are re-emerging. Regardless of showcase improvements, the situation of women and children remains desperate. The token woman in Karzai’s cabinet, the courageous physician Sima Samar, has been forced out of government and is now in constant fear of her life, with an armed guard outside her office door and another at her gate. Murder, rape and child abuse are committed with impunity by the private armies of America’s “friends”, the warlords whom Washington has bribed with millions of dollars, cash in hand, to give the pretence of stability.

“We are in a combat zone the moment we leave this base,” an American colonel told me at Bagram airbase, near Kabul. “We are shot at every day, several times a day.” When I said that surely he had come to liberate and protect the people, he belly-laughed. American troops are rarely seen in Afghanistan’s towns. They escort US officials at high speed in armoured vans with blackened windows and military vehicles, mounted with machine-guns, in front and behind. Even the vast Bagram base was considered too insecure for the defence secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, during his recent, fleeting visit. So nervous are the Americans that a few weeks ago they “accidentally” shot dead four government soldiers in the centre of Kabul, igniting the second major street protest against their presence in a week.

Read the entire article here.

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A great comment

 Posted by at 21:05  Election 2004
Jun 292003

I was just reading through some of the comments on a recent post at Blog for America, and came upon one that I have to repost here. It so closely echoes the sentiments of so many of us…

I was talking to a fellow Dean supporter yesterday about this phenomenal week (which isn’t over!) and she made what I think is a most astute comment, comparing this country to a parched landscape needing only a spark to catch fire.

It’s been hard to be an American these past few years… holding close the American ideals that I was raised with… ideals which made me proud of a country of unbridled opportunity and promise, fairness and liberty, a country devised of checks and balances against the excesses of power.

These have always been more ideals than the realities of life in America, but part of being an American was the hope of a better future for our children. The belief we are in continually in the process of creating a better day, a New Deal, a New Frontier, a Great Society.

Having lived through Nixon and Reagan and Bush Sr., so when GWB came to power (I can’t bring myself to say ‘was elected’) I thought I knew what it would be like to have a President whose politics I so strongly disagreed with. But I figured the damage he did would be fairly limited because of our system of government: there’s the opposition party, the watch-dog media, the courts… there’s world opinion.

Never could I have imagined that we’d be plunged into debt on a scale that is unfathomable, that our traditional allies would be alienated by our bullying, that we’d flout world opinion and go into an ill conceived adventurous war based on half-truths, wishful thinking and lies. And that the press would be unquestioning cheerleaders. And that the opposition party, *my* party, would timidly acquiesce. Could America become totalitarian? And Americans would let it happen?

That’s why I’m volunteering for Dean. That’s why I’m giving money to his campaign… and more involved in the political process than I’d ever been. The stakes are way, way too high.

Governor Dean is speaking out loudest and most persuasively against the subversion of the American way, and I can’t help but support him in this. He articulates the values that I’ve always thought were the core values of America.

I’m past the age of starry-eyed idealism… but I’m pleased to discover that rather than it being replaced by cynicism, it’s replaced with a pragmatic idealism. I’m willing to work hard for Governor Dean (and have been doing just that) to keep the dream alive. I’m willing to donate money, even though the Bush economy has been devestating to my family.

I’m deeply grateful to all of you to be able to participate in this incredible movement… the Democratic party may not be aware how desperately it needs us… and needs Governor Dean.

It desperately needs to find its voice. To find the courage of its convictions. To engage the hearts and minds of regular Americans. To connect with our ideas and our desire to build a better future.

We’ve got the fire… and Governor Dean is the spark.

Like the Doctor says… we’re going to take back the party. We’re going to take back our country. And Governor Dean is going to take the White House in 2004.

Great comment, yes? I thought you’d think so.

Lust, or love?

 Posted by at 14:56  Election 2004
Jun 292003

Why I think I am in lust with Barry Crimmins:

Is there anything more pitiful than the continued media discussion of how Democratic candidates “lack the stature” necessary to take on Bush? The man stole office, has presided over the looting of the Treasury for private interests, he has encouraged the corporate rape of the environment, he was on an extended vacation while terrorists prepared to savagely strike the nation for which he was responsible, he then went Barney Fife on 9/11 and headed for Nebraska while the East Coast burned, next he employed the assaults as justification for authoritarian destruction of civil liberties, and we now know his entire premise to engage this nation in what is now a quagmire in Iraq was based on wholesale lies and I don’t care what anyone says he is still dumber than a rock BUT WE HAVE TO LISTEN TO PEOPLE DISCUSS THIS CRIMINAL AS IF HE POSSESSES FORMIDABLE STATURE?

You can help boot this idiot out of the office to which he was never elected in the first place. Contribute now! Howard Dean has the stature to take on Bush!

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Clueless Senator

 Posted by at 14:17  Lifestyle
Jun 292003

Yet another reason why Republicans are not fit to rule this country:

Top Senator Backs Amendment Banning Gay Marriage

The Republican leader of the U.S. Senate said on Sunday he supported a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage.

Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist expressed concern about the Supreme Court’s decision last week to strike down a Texas sodomy law. He said he supported an amendment that would reserve marriage for relationships between men and women.

“I very much feel that marriage is a sacrament, and that sacrament should extend and can extend to that legal entity of a union between, what is traditionally in our Western values has been defined, as between a man and a woman,” said Frist, of Tennessee. “So I would support the amendment.”

The comment, during an interview on ABC’s “This Week” program, comes days after the U.S. high court struck down sodomy laws that made it a crime for gays to have consensual sex in their own bedrooms on the grounds the laws violated constitutional privacy rights.

The court’s decision was applauded by gay rights advocates as a historic ruling that overturned sodomy laws in 13 states.

Conservatives have expressed their fears that the June 26 ruling could lead to the legalization of gay marriages.

The marriage amendment, reintroduced in the House of Representatives last month, says marriage in the United States “shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman.”

Amending the constitution requires the approval of two thirds of each of the houses of the U.S. Congress and approval of 38 state legislatures.

Frist said he feared that the ruling on the Texas sodomy law could lead to a situation “where criminal activity within the home would in some way be condoned.”

“And I’m thinking of, whether it’s prostitution or illegal commercial drug activity in the home, and to have the courts come in, in this zone of privacy, and begin to define it gives me some concern,” Frist said.

Frist said the questions of whether to criminalize sodomy should be made by state legislatures.

“That’s where those decisions, with the local norms, the local mores, are being able to have their input in reflected,” Frist said.

Let me be sure I have this correct, Senator. You believe that each individual state should decide whether to allow sodomy (which is what conservatives like to call any sexual act not performed between a man and a woman in the missionary position), yet you believe that the federal government should be the ones who set the legal definition of marriage. Strange set of values you have there, sir.

Let me put your fears to rest. The recent Supreme Court decision will, without doubt, lead to the legalization of gay marriage. It’s called equal rights. Get used to it. You just have to get over this idea that somebody else enjoying the same rights and privileges that you enjoy is “criminal activity.”

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