Tag: Markos Moulitsas

Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, Oh My

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

In 2006, the public policy research organization, The Cato Institute, invited some leading liberal Democratic columnists and bloggers to discuss the question if Libertarians should vote Democratic:

In over a half-decade of Republican political dominance, Americans have witnessed a huge expansion in the scope and cost of government, a questionably just and so-far unsuccessful war in Iraq, serious erosions of civil liberty, and a troubling tendency toward an imperial executive. Is it time for the traditional alliance between libertarians and conservatives to finally end? If Republicans in power have failed so utterly to promote libertarian ideals, would libertarians better advance their cause by supporting Democrats at the polls? Of course, the fact that libertarians have been so badly abused by conservatives doesn’t necessarily imply they will find a more welcoming home among liberals. Is the Democratic tent big enough to include small-government free marketeers. Perhaps libertarians have something to gain by supporting to Democrats, but does the Democratic party have anything to gain by courting libertarians?

Markos “Kos” Moulitsas, proprietor of DailyKos, opened the discussion with the lead article, The Case for the Libertarian Democrat:

It was my fealty to the notion of personal liberty that made me a Republican when I came of age in the 1980s. It is my continued fealty to personal liberty that makes me a Democrat today.

The case against the libertarian Republican is so easy to make that I almost feel compelled to stipulate it and move on. It is the case for the libertarian Democrat that has created much discussion and not a small amount of controversy when I first introduced the notion in what was, in reality, a throwaway blog post on Daily Kos on a slow news day in early June 2006.

Moulitsas went on to describe how the article was attacked by Libertarians unwilling to recognize they were losing their “grasp of libertarian principles” but at the same time were “unwilling to cede any ground to a liberal“. The real surprise came from the general reaction:

[O]f Americans who are uncomfortable with Republican/conservative efforts to erode our civil liberties while intruding into our bedrooms and churches; they don’t like unaccountable corporations invading their privacy, holding undue control over their economic fortunes, and despoiling our natural surroundings; yet they also don’t appreciate the nanny state, the over-regulation of small businesses, the knee-jerk distrust of the free market, or the meddlesome intrusions into mundane personal matters.

The discussion in that introduction continues with Moulitsas explaining why he is, in essence, a Libertarian Democrat, how liberal Democrats relate to Libertarians, the Conservatives’ “war on freedom” and why he believed that there was a rise of Libertarian Democrats. He went on to write three more article for that series:

  • A New Breed of Democrats
  • The Internal Democratic Struggle
  • Don’t Wait for Inspiration, Do Something!
  • They are well worth reading and book marking.

    Since then, Mr. Moulitsas has become a prominent voice for the left and has used the Internet to bring liberal/progressive policies into political mainstream and to the attention of what he calls the “traditional” media.  

    Step aside, Doug Feith. Kos is here.

    Fucking stupidest thing I ever heard irritates the fuck out of me. Makes me want to shove someone (Democrat?) off the sidewalk into traffic.  Clue to DKos users: Anyone speaking this stupidly must be talking their own book.

    With respect to Axelrod’s campaigneering confession that Obama has “played too nice” with Republicans, Kos sez:

    It took them long enough to figure it out, but apparently, they finally have.

    They finally figgered it!  Democraps more generally, too:

    However, that’s [Obama’s squandering his historic election and Democratic majorities] water under the bridge. Nothing we can do about that now except hope that Democrats learned their lessons. And it seems like might have.

    Markos Moulitsas is the stupidest fucking guy on the planet.  Water under bridge.  Nothing to do but “hope” Democrats learned a lesson.  Somebody, pull his pathetic fucking plug.


    That is literally the stupidest thing ever said in the 14-billion-trillion-gazillion mega-light-year history of the universe.  Send flowers to his bereaved loved ones, ’cause I’m sure he died of shame.  Fucking Toon Town ass-weasel.

    Kucinich tells his side of the story on Democracy Now!

    In a lengthy interview on Democracy Now! with Amy Goodman, Congressman Dennis Kucinich explained why he would not vote for the present health care bill and defended his position against attacks from people on the left like Markos Moulitsas.  He also spoke about the subjects of Afghanistan, campaign finance, and the passing of activist Granny D.

    I mean, I have a responsibility to take a stand here on behalf of those who want a public option. There’s about thirty-four members of the Senate, at least, who have signed on to saying they support a public option. If I were to just concede right now and say, “Well, you know, whatever you want. All this pressure’s building. Just forget about it,” actually weakens every last-minute bit of negotiations that would try to improve the bill. So I think that it’s really critical to take this stand, because without it, there’s no real control over premiums. Without it, we have nothing in the bill except the privatization of our healthcare system.

    Markos’s fatwa on Kucinich

    Flying assassin robot, Marc Thiessen Markos Moulitsas, enters the final stage of development.

    I’m not sure if Moulitsas’ gambit is tantamount to:

    The privileged stupidity of Maureen Dowd:

    Maureen Dowd thinks she can walk into Mecca and demand to know what all this gol’ darned Islamic fundamentalism is all about.

    Or the arrogant de-tumescence of Tom Friedman.

    You can read this and other fine recent Daniel Larison for an explanation of just how shameful this sort of post-hoc rationalizing of murder and destruction really is, but what actually strikes me as the most inhuman, the most anti-human idea of all the inhuman ideas lodged in the reptilian, blood-drinking brains of Thomas Friedman and his crocodilian cohort, is the horrific notion that the highest lifetime achievement is voting in an election. Seriously. The pinnacle of the human experience at the ballot box. It is quite seriously insane. It elevates a procedural aspect of one particular form of government to a categorical moral virtue. It proposes that participation in electoral politicking occupies the same plane of significance and value as orgasm or childbirth, as making a home, as cooking a meal for one’s family, as meeting a new lover, as seeing a beautiful work of art or hearing an ingenious piece of music, as singing, as dancing, as getting a good night’s sleep, as spending a day on the water, as bartering and bargaining at the marketplace, as religious ecstasy, if you’re into that sort of thing . . . I mean, there is a whole panoply of centrally human experiences, and while a weak argument can be made that these are more readily available under some forms of governance than others, acts of civic engagement just aren’t that fucking important. A life without elections or a life without lovemaking? If you had to choose. And that is what’s so goddamned monstrous about Friedman. We destroyed these people’s lives, and we propose to buy off their suffering with congressional campaigns? Jesus wept.

    I personally think it’s somewhere in between.

    It bodes not well, fellow detainees.

    Kos Gets in the Weeds

    Markos can be a statesman:

    Let me say up front that my disagreement with the “support the current bill” crowd is based on policy and political considerations, but I can see how reasonable people can come to the opposite conclusion. I don’t think supporters of this wreck of a bill are stupid or compromised or anything like that.

    Classy.  Fair.  Ha ha ha ha ha.

    All right, I’m a fool to be sarcastic.  Sorry.

    Then he goes all weedy and deals with two prominent folks who have disagreed with him – Ezra Klein and Nate Silver.  Nate Silver’s “20 Questions for Bill Killers” really brings out the classic old-skool blogger in kos, the whole blockquote your opponent and then slam him in return comment.

    Nothing new there, folks have been saying this for months and now events are giving “informed opinion” the resonance and weight of “fact.”

    As to the ambiance of the blogosphere, I am not among those who feel this way:

    Regardless, this is a fantastic debate. For critics who bemoaned the lack of policy discussed on blogs, this year has certainly proven that when we do have the opportunity to impact policy (i.e. a Democratic-run government), we certainly can get into the weeds on policy.

    I don’t think this has been a “fantastic debate.”  And as immigration is just now beginning to come up as the topic du jour (am I spelling that right) for the intelligentsia to discuss, I am going to have a really really really hard time if the quality of “debate” is as “fantastic” as that of the one over HCR.

    New Markos @ Newsweek

    Markos has a new piece up at Newsweek, the first one since November 26, 2007.

    For the intro and some instant analysis, join me below the fold.

    This does the left no good.

    Looks like Moulitsas still can’t let go of the paranoid “Clinton darkened Obama in her ad” conspiracy theory.

    Look, I dislike Hillary Clinton as much as any true Progressive, but this has got to stop.  There are plenty of things the senator says and does in this campaign that are worthy of criticism, but engaging in this sort of unsubstantiated speculation and attack really only hurts two things: Obama’s campaign, and Left Blogsylvania.

    It hurts Obama’s campaign because it makes his followers and, by association, the candidate himself, look like they’re hiding behind his race.  Similarly, it hurts Left Blogsylvania because it makes us look like a bunch of delusional kooks who probably haven’t been laid in ages (if ever) and from whom candidates can’t distance themselves fast enough.  Substantive posts like this one end up being ignored or marginalized, because of the association with what is perceived to be a group of utter loons.

    I respectfully advise Markos Moulitsas and his band of bloggers to please give it a rest.  Dig up what you can on Clinton; Lord only knows she deserves it.  But don’t let your zeal for exposing her overtake common sense and better judgment.  Or sanity.  Especially sanity.

    NH Primary Recount: Put Down the Orange Colored Glasses!

    The Great Orange Overlord has spoken on the New Hampshire Primary recount.  All is well in the world of Kos, and we should be greatful.

    Saturday Night YouTube: Hamu Hamu Heaven!!!

    I swear, I just can’t get my mind around this:


    When I try to, my brain scrambles.  So I need something to realax and enjoy!

    MarKos and the suppression of Impeachment Advocacy on DailyKos

    I lack optimism while writing this because those who are willing to let Bush skate free for his war crimes and treason are legion and they are well-funded.

    I’m very glad to see rjones2818’s frequent updates on Kucinich’s campaign. If not for Kucinich, we’d be deprived of even a glimmer of hope for justice in a very dark period of time.


    I’ve re-formatted the list of Kucinich position statements from rjones’ diary above. I want to make it as convenient as possible for people who won’t support Kucinich to know exactly what it is they’re not supporting.

    Kucinich_12-pt_Plan.pdf 21KB Nov 27 2007 10:48:15 AM

    Kucinich_Affirmative_Action.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:02 PM

    Kucinich_African_American_Issues.pdf 38KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:05 PM

    Kucinich_AIDS.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:07 PM

    Kucinich_Aid_to_Africa.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:04 PM

    Kucinich_Animal_Rights.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:09 PM

    Kucinich_Anti-Ballistic_Missile_Treaty.pdf 35KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:12 PM

    Kucinich_Arab_Americans.pdf 41KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:14 PM

    Kucinich_Campaign_Finance.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:17 PM

    Kucinich_Campaign_Reform_and_IRV.pdf 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:17 PM

    Kucinich_Childrens_Issues.pdf 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:23 PM

    Kucinich_Civil_Liberties.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:23 PM

    Kucinich_Clean_Air.pdf 38KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:26 PM

    Kucinich_Clean_Water.pdf 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:29 PM

    Kucinich_Complementary_and_Alternative_M… 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:29 PM

    Kucinich_Corporate_Power.pdf 39KB Nov 27 2007 10:48:04 AM

    Kucinich_Crime.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:32 PM

    Kucinich_Cuban_Embargo.pdf 30KB Nov 27 2007 10:48:11 AM

    Kucinich_DC Statehood.pdf 35KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:36 PM

    Kucinich_Death_Penalty.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:35 PM

    Kucinich_Department_of_Peace.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:39 PM

    Kucinich_Depleted_Uranium.pdf 36KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:43 PM

    Kucinich_Disability_Rights.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:46 PM

    Kucinich_Domestic_Violence.pdf 38KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:48 PM

    Kucinich_Drug_War.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:52 PM

    Kucinich_Economic_Justice.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:51 PM

    Kucinich_Education.pdf 36KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:58 PM

    Kucinich_Electronic_Voting.pdf 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:09:56 PM

    Kucinich_Electronic_Waste.pdf 35KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:00 PM

    Kucinich_Energy.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:04 PM

    Kucinich_Environment.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:03 PM

    Kucinich_Farm_Policy.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:06 PM

    Kucinich_Forests_and_Logging_on_Public_L… 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:07 PM

    Kucinich_Genetically_Engineered_Food.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:10 PM

    Kucinich_Gun_Laws.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:12 PM

    Kucinich_H-1B_and_L-1_Visas.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:19 PM

    Kucinich_Haiti.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:16 PM

    Kucinich_Hemp.pdf 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:20 PM

    Kucinich_Housing.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:23 PM

    Kucinich_Immigrants_Rights.pdf 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:25 PM

    Kucinich_International_Cooperation.pdf 38KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:26 PM

    Kucinich_Irish-Americans.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:29 PM

    Kucinich_Jobs_Programs_Infrastructure.pdf 36KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:31 PM

    Kucinich_Korea.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:36 PM

    Kucinich_LGBTQ_Rights.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:40 PM

    Kucinich_Mad_Cow_Disease.pdf 35KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:42 PM

    Kucinich_Mandatory_Minimum_Sentences.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:45 PM

    Kucinich_Manufacturing.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:45 PM

    Kucinich_Marijuana_Decriminalization.pdf 39KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:49 PM

    Kucinich_Media_Reform.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:48 PM

    Kucinich_Medical_Marijuana.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:52 PM

    Kucinich_Medicare_Bill.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:54 PM

    Kucinich_Mental_Health.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:56 PM

    Kucinich_Middle_East.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:10:58 PM

    Kucinich_Military_Budget.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:00 PM

    Kucinich_Minimum_Wage.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:05 PM

    Kucinich_National_Security.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:10 PM

    Kucinich_Native Americans.pdf 39KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:33 PM

    Kucinich_Nuclear_Safety.pdf 35KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:15 PM

    Kucinich_Nuclear_Weapons.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:18 PM

    Kucinich_Open_Debates.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:17 PM

    Kucinich_Organic_Farming.pdf 40KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:20 PM

    Kucinich_Outsourcing_Jobs.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:23 PM

    Kucinich_Patriot_Act.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:24 PM

    Kucinich_Poverty.pdf 35KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:28 PM

    Kucinich_Predatory_Lending.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:27 PM

    Kucinich_Prescription_Drugs.pdf 34KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:31 PM

    Kucinich_Public_Services.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:34 PM

    Kucinich_Racial_Discrimination.pdf 31KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:35 PM

    Kucinich_Reproductive Rights.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:40 PM

    Kucinich_Seniors.pdf 39KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:41 PM

    Kucinich_Small_Business_Growth.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:45 PM

    Kucinich_Social_Security.pdf 36KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:44 PM

    Kucinich_Sweat Shops.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:48 PM

    Kucinich_Taxes.pdf 34KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:48 PM

    Kucinich_Terrorism.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:50 PM

    Kucinich_The_Arts.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:53 PM

    Kucinich_The_Draft.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:53 PM

    Kucinich_Torture.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:56 PM

    Kucinich_Trade.pdf 32KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:56 PM

    Kucinich_Universal_Health_Care.pdf 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:11:58 PM

    Kucinich_Veterans.pdf 33KB Nov 26 2007 11:12:00 PM

    Kucinich_Voting_Rights.pdf 35KB Nov 26 2007 11:12:05 PM

    Kucinich_Vouchers.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:12:04 PM

    Kucinich_Water_Human_Right.pdf 29KB Nov 26 2007 11:12:07 PM

    Kucinich_Weapons_Non-Proliferation.pdf 34KB Nov 26 2007 11:12:12 PM

    Kucinich_Workers_Rights.pdf 37KB Nov 26 2007 11:12:19 PM

    Kucinich_World_Hunger.pdf 30KB Nov 26 2007 11:12:15 PM


    From Wikipedia’s entry on the American Revolutionary War

    Early in 1775, the British Army consisted of about 36,000 men worldwide… Additionally, over the course of the war the British hired about 30,000 soldiers from German princes, these soldiers were called “Hessians” because many of them came from Hesse-Kassel. The troops were mercenaries in the sense of professionals who were hired out by their prince. Germans made up about one-third of the British troop strength in North America.

    On December 26th 1776 after being chased by the British army under Lords Howe and Cornwallis augmented by these “Hessians” led by Wilhelm von Knyphausen from Brooklyn Heights to the other side of the Delaware the fate of the Continental Army and thus the United States looked bleak.  The Continental Congress abandoned Philidephia, fleeing to Baltimore.  It was at this time Thomas Paine was inspired to write The Crisis.

    The story of Washington’s re-crossing of the Delaware to successfully attack the “Hessian” garrison at Trenton is taught to every school child.

    On March 31, 2004 Iraqi insurgents in Fallujah ambushed a convoy containing four American private military contractors from Blackwater USA.

    The four armed contractors, Scott Helvenston, Jerko Zovko, Wesley Batalona and Michael Teague, were dragged from their cars, beaten, and set ablaze. Their burned corpses were then dragged through the streets before being hung over a bridge crossing the Euphrates.

    Of this incident the next day prominent blogger Markos Moulitsas notoriously said-

    Every death should be on the front page (2.70 / 40)

    Let the people see what war is like. This isn’t an Xbox game. There are real repercussions to Bush’s folly.

    That said, I feel nothing over the death of merceneries. They aren’t in Iraq because of orders, or because they are there trying to help the people make Iraq a better place. They are there to wage war for profit. Screw them.

    (From Corpses on the Cover by gregonthe28th.  This link directly to the comment doesn’t work for some reason.)

    Now I think that this is a reasonable sentiment that any patriotic American with a knowledge of history might share.

    Why bring up this old news again, two days from the 231st anniversary of the Battle of Trenton?

    Warnings Unheeded On Guards In Iraq

    Despite Shootings, Security Companies Expanded Presence

    By Steve Fainaru, Washington Post Foreign Service

    Monday, December 24, 2007; A01

    The U.S. government disregarded numerous warnings over the past two years about the risks of using Blackwater Worldwide and other private security firms in Iraq, expanding their presence even after a series of shooting incidents showed that the firms were operating with little regulation or oversight, according to government officials, private security firms and documents.

    Last year, the Pentagon estimated that 20,000 hired guns worked in Iraq; the Government Accountability Office estimated 48,000.

    The Defense Department has paid $2.7 billion for private security since 2003, according to USA Spending, a government-funded project that tracks contracting expenditures; the military said it currently employs 17 companies in Iraq under contracts worth $689.7 million. The State Department has paid $2.4 billion for private security in Iraq — including $1 billion to Blackwater — since 2003, USA Spending figures show.

    The State Department’s reliance on Blackwater expanded dramatically in 2006, when together with the U.S. firms DynCorp and Triple Canopy it won a new, multiyear contract worth $3.6 billion. Blackwater’s share was $1.2 billion, up from $488 million, and the company more than doubled its staff, from 482 to 1,082. From January 2006 to April 2007, the State Department paid Blackwater at least $601 million in 38 transactions, according to government data.

    The company developed a reputation for aggressive street tactics. Even inside the fortified Green Zone, Blackwater guards were known for running vehicles off the road and pointing their weapons at bystanders, according to several security company representatives and U.S. officials.

    Based on insurance claims there are only 25 confirmed deaths of Blackwater employees in Iraq, including the four killed in Fallujah.  You might care to contrast that with the 17 Iraqis killed on September 16th alone.  Then there are the 3 Kurdish civilians in Kirkuk on February 7th of 2006.  And the three employees of the state-run media company and the driver for the Interior Ministry.

    And then exactly one year ago today, on Christmas Eve 2006, a Blackwater mercenary killed the body guard of Iraqi Vice President Adil Abdul-Mahdi while drunk at a Christmas party (the mercenary, not the guard or Vice President Abdul-Mahdi who were both presumably observant Muslims and no more likely to drink alcohol than Mitt Romney to drink tea).

    Sort of makes all those embarrassing passes you made at co-workers and the butt Xeroxes at the office party seem kind of trivial, now doesn’t it?

    So that makes it even at 25 apiece except I’ve hardly begun to catalog the number of Iraqis killed by trigger happy Blackwater mercenaries.

    They say irony is dead and I (and Santayana) say that the problem with history is that people who don’t learn from it are doomed to repeat it.

    The Great Dem/Libertarian Alliance: One Too Many Kooks and Up in Smoke!

    Ahhh…it always hurts when something which seemed so promising comes crashing down around you, well…not me…but you know what I mean.  Even more so when the person who proposes the something promising seems very cavalier in bringing it down.  Oh well…let’s see the end of the Great Dem/Libertarian Alliance even before it really began!

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