Tag: Dump Obama

Dump Obama: we who have nothing to lose

Battle lines are being drawn. Finally. The Obama tax cut deal was a betrayal too far. And now Dump Obama has become part of the national dialogue big time. First there were a few squeaks. Then columns by Michael Lerner Save Obama’s presidency by challenging him on the left, and Clarence Jones Time to Think the Unthinkable: A Democratic Primary Challenge To Obama’s Reelection, among others. On the New York Times front page, Matt Bai of the Times wrote a skeptical piece Murmurs of Primary Challenge to Obama (demoted from its original title Talk on the Left of a Primary Challenge), in which he tellingly concludes:

should the president’s progressive critics warm to the idea, it might not take a particularly credible primary challenge to weaken Mr. Obama’s chances for re-election. It might only take a challenge designed to do exactly that.

This was followed by the inevitable counter-attack, from the likes of Ed Kilgore and David Broder, plus any number of lesser lights, touting three points:

(1) The tax cut deal was a masterful stroke – stimulating the economy and ensuring Obama’s re-election in 2012; and

(2) No “serious” challenger would dare risk their credibility and prestige by entering the primaries, the ultimate proof being that they haven’t done so yet.

(3) A primary challenge would only serve to harm the very Democratic Party that we all hold so dear.

On Jan 1, 2011, Let’s Water-Balloon Obama in Effigy, Nation-wide!

People need to get busy organizing productively for their future, but quite frankly, a lot of us need to have a good laugh, maybe moreso. So, why not attempt to

1) provide that laugh

2) put Primary Obama / Dump Obama on the national radar

3) start the evangelizing process for Primary Obama / Dump Obama

4) provide networking opportunities

5) let people work out some of their frustrations, at least temporarily

My plan is simple – Water Balloon Obama in Effigy! Nation-wide!

How can we grow a nascent Dump Obama Movement?

This is mostly a re-posting of an answer to a comment in the FDL diary  Last Call for Nominees: Who Should Primary Obama? Just discussing Dump Obama will never turn it into a movement. There seems to be a lot of enthusiasm for Dump Obama at FDL. Great, but that fact and $1.00 will still only get you a cup of coffee at McDonald’s. Hopefully, a sub-goal of a Dump obama movement will be to help dispel the notion that political activity which is limited to ‘making statements’, ‘raising consciousness’, etc. is some kind of slam dunk, which can never be a complete waste of time and energy. An even worse situation: a preponderance of informational activities can provide a diversion from effective organization.

Dump Obama: working today

On October 7, OpenLeft ran a most charming piece by Mike Lux, Obama comes through on foreclosure issue: what’s next?

But then, that most delightful and rare of Washington moments happened: the system worked. Consumer advocates started raising hell on the blogs and in traditional media, the White House started looking more closely at the issue, and literally within a matter of hours, Obama announced that he was not going to sign the bill … As soon as the issue was raised, the White House team focused on it, and made the right decision quickly …

But I think it is fair to ask ourselves what happens next and how the progressive community should respond to it … The question now is how progressives respond if Obama does start to move in a more progressive direction … progressives should be ready to move to meet the President halfway and work with him in the areas where he does move our direction, and we shouldn’t always assume the worst. We should keep our healthy skepticism, push hard when we need to push, but be ready to engage when a door is opened to us to engage on.

In other words, the entire episode is a validation of the incrementalist, cooperative liberalism that has brought the progressive forces to the sorry state we are now in.  More tactically, it is a plea for us now to go full steam with the Democratic GOTV operation.

“Dump Corporate Dems” – Going Green at the State Level, to “make Dems do it” at the Federal level

Bruce Dixon, from the Black Agenda Report, wrote a very interesting diary for OpenLeft called “Moving the conversation forward — our plan in Georgia”


In that diary, Dixon goes into the substantial roadblocks to primarying bad Dems, including a dearth of plausible allies inside the Democratic Party:

Though Rev. Lowery and some others are dear friends and respected elders, the traditional civil rights organizations have also been captured by corporate donors. Neither they nor labor are any use at all in challenging any elected Democrat.

Primarying these corporate Democrats has many disadvantages, some of which I’ve discussed elsewhere. The most telling for me are that

1. no news coverage on political issues makes getting people’s attention in primary seasons much harder work than it ought to be

2. once the primary season is over, you have to flog the vote out for a slate of corporate Dems who often despise your entire community.

Dixon then goes into the strategy for growing a Green Party in GA, initially in at least the black areas of the state. His plan seems reasonable and do-able, though on re-reading it, I have to confess I’m not sure if he’s only focussed on attaining state offices, for the time being! That’s how I read the diary, when it came out.

More after the flip

Dump Obama: more urgent than ever

Since I floated the call for a Dump Obama movement, I’ve gotten much helpful feedback.

My original draft, “Time for a Dump Obama movement,” was based on the broad strokes, which I believe are essentially correct.  But I’ve since taken a closer look based both on these responses and from Obama’s contemptuous speech at that infamous $30,000/plate fundraiser.

First, many of the comments, I believe, took my call as something that should be done INSTEAD of what others were already doing.  I was then given alternate approaches, including Vote Green, Dump the Senate, Dump the System, write-in Public Option, Don’t Vote, work the Dem primaries.  Others pointed out that 2012 (when Obama would face a primary challenge) was a long ways off, and I didn’t address what was to be done with the upcoming November elections.  Allow me to address them in no particular order.

I call for a movement.

Not, for instance, an organization or a campaign committee.  People keep saying, you have to have a candidate first.  No, the movement comes first.  Is there any movement already?  That’s a complicated question, since the concept of movement involves a lot of things that can’t be measured like frogs in a pot.  Movements have organizations, members, slogans, actions, demands — even contradictory demands — but they are not reducible to any or all of them.  A movement entails some sense of common identification.  Some sense of motion, of development.  A movement entails some sense of hope, to use a word that has turned to poison but must not be surrendered.

Open Question: What Points should a DUMP OBAMA Manifesto make? Me: CALL FOR LEADERS WITH BACKBONE

The fertile mind of Jeff Roby has lately come to openly ruminate about a DUMP OBAMA movement. This diary poses the open question as to what main points a DUMP OBAMA manifesto should make. What should a 5 minute elevator speech sound like? If you casually mentioned to a co-worker that you joined a DUMP OBAMA movement, and they asked you “Why?” or “What’s that about?”, what would you want to say?

One suggestion by yours truly below the flip.