Scott Hardie | March 11, 2005
Democratic voters like me will lose another ounce of hope for our party with the welcoming of Bob Casey into the Pennsylvania senate race against Rick Santorum. (link) Casey, it happens, is outspokenly pro-life. That wouldn't be a big deal if he were being welcomed despite his pro-life stance, as if it were only one part of his otherwise-Democratic ideology. But no, he's being welcomed because he's pro-life: The Democratic party wants to reach out further to Pennsylvania's conservative voters for support.

What the fuck is wrong with my party? When are the people in charge going to realize they're employing a losing strategy every time they do this? Last year, instead of getting behind a presidential candidate who we actually wanted to see in office, we supported the candidate who we thought would best be able to steal votes away from Bush's conservative base, as though such a strategy could ever possibly be successful: Conservative voters are going to vote for their candidate, not one from the other side of the fence who is a pale and untrustworthy imitation. (My apologies to Erik Bates, an exception to the rule.) This strategy only reinforces the popular notion that our party doesn't really stand for anything, and will take any position necessary to win. We do stand for something, but we keep selling ourselves out to get ahead. If this worked and we did get ahead, maybe I could see the rationale, but the fact that it's wrong and it doesn't work should be cause for my party to wake the fuck up.

If you're a socially conservative voter in Pennsylvania, your support is probably already solidly behind Rick Santorum, whose notorious comments about homosexuality made him a celebrity within the party. Why in the hell would you vote for Santorum's Democratic opponent just because he's pro-life? "You know, I really like Fords because they have these twenty features that I want. But Chevy has one of the twenty features, so I think I'll buy a Chevy." For all I know, Bob Casey may well be a worthy candidate for other reasons, but it's typically clueless of my party to support him because of his pro-life stance. When, when, when is the Democratic Party going to get it?

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
In addition to Casey, Schumer is also trying to recruit anti-Roe Rep. Jim Langevin to run against pro-Roe Republican Sen. Lincoln Chafee in Rhode Island.

Is this a typo, or does it correctly say that the head of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is also recruiting Republicans? This makes no sense to me. If this isn't "positioning" -- as they deny it is -- then *why* would they be concerned about recruiting Republicans to run against each other???

Partisan affiliation aside, I agree that this is pretty fucked up, Scott.

Edit: "Rep." = Representative?

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
It's so sad. The Democratic Party has good values and ideas - but why are we not representing them? Everyone keeps talking about all the wrong moves they're making, but instead of changing they keep right on plugging with it. At this rate, we'll have Bushes in the White House for another 20 terms.

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Well, at least George W. has *daughters*!!! ;-)

Scott Horowitz | March 11, 2005
Hey, they even have a "brown one," according to George Sr.

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
Yeah, that's comforting. Not only will Bush's reign forever, but women will be excluded in that reign.

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
So what are you saying, Anna... that the "little brown one" stands a greater chance than Dubbs' daughters of carrying on the Bush legacy?

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
Are you talking about Condoleza Rice? I don't know who the "little brown one" refers to.

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Then why'd you say that about women???

(link)

(link)

(link)

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
I interpreted your statement of "Well, at least George W. has *daughters*!!!" to mean that we didn't have to worry about his kids becoming President.

Lori Lancaster | March 11, 2005
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Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Mmm... I prefer to think of them as cud-chewing cows, Lori. Or perhaps lemmings??? ;-)

Lori Lancaster | March 11, 2005
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Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
He is pretty hot, though... ;DDD

Lori Lancaster | March 11, 2005
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Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Actually, Lori, I *have* heard people say that about some white-ass folks... sometimes even themselves! But I have to admit that I sympathize with Bush: (An enraged Bush defended the comments as affectionate.) I have always thought of it as an affectionate expression, too... And even though it's hard to imagine that coming from the lips of George Sr. in an affectionate way, don't you think that's a little prejudiced of *us*???

Edit: NOT that I don't completely agree with the rest of what you're saying -- about the hypocrisy and the voters...

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
I used to have quite the crush on Erik in the days of CHiPs... ;DDD

Lori Lancaster | March 11, 2005
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Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
Me too - it's completely offensive - I can't believe any public official would say something like that where people could hear them.

Erik Bates | March 11, 2005
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Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Hmm...

Well, a couple of things here... hopefully, without sounding quite rude. First, as a Lancaster, you should know well enough that one's last name isn't always indicative of heritage. I know a handful of people with 1/2 and 1/4 Japanese, with the surname "Wright".

Secondly, I was asked in the 6th grade (by my *teacher*) what my "nationality" was. I didn't really understand the question at the time, and I said "American?" Since then, I have been asked numerous times in my life if I had some Asian or Indian/Hispanic/Islander ancestry... but the truth is that I really don't know -- my knowledge of the maternal half of my "family tree" falls way short at my mother and her mother (deceased before my birth)... that is all. My mother has made mention of supposed Cherokee lineage, but... well, if you knew my mother, you wouldn't know what to think of what, either. I haven't spoken with her in 6 years now... because she has made herself unavailable.

I'm sure that none of this is apparent by my picture or my name, but I have other photos that are *quite* different, and whenever I get this place fully unpacked and *find* them, I will post one -- if you are interested.

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Hahaha... I *knew* that would prompt a comment from you, Mr. Bates! ;DDD

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
I'm confused about your response, Amy - I hope I'M not being rude, but I'm unsure what your heritage has to do with the "little brown" thing said by Bush being rude.

Scott Horowitz | March 11, 2005
Woah, you go to lunch and the posts just fly. A few years ago, Bush Sr. was speaking and he mentioned he had a brown one too, talking about his grandson, George Prescott Bush, Jeb's son. Jeb's wife is Hispanic, and so he mentioned that.

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Re: Anna 12:38

Unaware of the media microphones picking up his comments...

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
Ah. Could you clarify your thoughts for my question though?

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Then maybe you should re-read the comment that I was responding to... from *Lori*

I'm not sure how to clarify right now without a very lengthy response, and I'm about to go somewhere. Perhaps I will try again later... but probably not.

Sorry if this seems rude -- I just don't have the time for splitting hairs right now...

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
I did read, and re-read it. Still confused...why wouldn't you respond?

Denise Sawicki | March 11, 2005
Lori said "(I don't believe Austin is a hispanic/latino/whathaveyou type name)" and Amy responded to that bit...

In an ideal world, referring to someone by their skin color would be a descriptor no more offensive than referring to someone by their hair color.. though perhaps those of us who are pasty white may be more inclined to believe that we live in such an ideal world. Granted, public officials are supposed to be more politically correct and use more complicated terms rather than describing someone by what they happen to look like...

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
I'm sorry you think I'm splitting hairs, Amy. When I don't understand something, I ask for clarification. Shrug.

Ah, I get the name thing now - thanks for responding, Denise. You always do so much to prevent misunderstandings!

Lori Lancaster | March 11, 2005
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Kris Weberg | March 11, 2005
Basically, I think Amy was remarking on her own possible ethnicity to support Lori's point that physical appearance doesn't necessarily correlate to "racial heritage."

She wasn't remarking on Bush's comments, except tangentially -- she was replying to a particular moment in Lori's comment.

Jackie Mason | March 11, 2005
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John E Gunter | March 11, 2005
All I have to say about heritage is, be proud of where you come from, even if you only know who your parents are. My mother has been doing research on our family tree and we have American Indian, German, English, Scottish, French and possibly a little Irish in our tree. So, yeah, I'm a Heinz 57, but you know what, every one of my ancestors took the time to raise their child and contributed to the human condition.

I'm sure that some of my ancestors have done really terrible things in their past, in fact one of my ancestors was a Hessian soldier. From what little research I've done on the Hessian soldier, they weren't really the nicest individuals. But what tops that off, my ancestor went awol to stay in the country.

So not only do I have a nasty mercenary in my background, he was also a deserter. But, he felt strongly enough about the possibilities that were available in this country that he stayed here.

I know that this isn't completely true, but it shouldn't be about what color you are, or what religion you follow, or your political views, what it should be about is who you are and what you stand for. As long as you're not some raving nutcase who wants to go out and inflict some kind of harm on another individual, you're all right in my book. I might not agree with you, but you're a human and each one of us has the ability to make the world a better place.

John

John E Gunter | March 11, 2005
[quote]I have at least 2 different types of indian in me (that sounds twisted)[quote]

LOL Lori! I think it's such a hoot when you say things like that!

John

Amy Austin | March 11, 2005
Okay, just got showered/dressed and checking back before I go...

Thanks Denise, Kris, & John... you all responded with exactly what I didn't feel like formulating myself -- it's apparent to me that you understood perfectly! Sorry, Anna, but that is often the source of my frustration... having to reiterate myself when I thought I had already made it clear the first time.

Lori: I did not think at all that you were trying to pick a fight -- and I hoped that you would see that I was not, either (and I think you did) -- just wanted to point some things out, which I think you also understood and took quite well, thank you.

I'd really like to comment further, but I just wanted to say this for now so that everyone knows I'm not mad or anything -- especially Lori!

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
I'm sorry you feel that way, Amy, but I'm not asking you to reiterate yourself, but perhaps point out where I went wrong or say what you're saying in a different way. - it's not out of any sense of "trying to make you frustrated." I hate repeating myself too, but one line like Denise posted would have been faster than what you typed in response, I think. It's not my fault that I didn't understand "perfectly!" Is it?

Mike Eberhart | March 11, 2005
100% German right here.... Course you all probably figured that out with my last name.... :)

Anna Gregoline | March 11, 2005
Actually, whenever I see your last name, I think of my rent - because the company is called Eberheardt Glenwood, LLC...

Amy Austin | March 12, 2005
Anna, I'm sorry if it seemed that I was slamming you earlier for not understanding me "perfectly" -- I wasn't. I also wasn't accusing you of "trying" to frustrate me... just explaining that/why you sometimes do.

I only wanted to thank everybody else for saying exactly everything that I wanted to at that moment but couldn't find it in me -- through my frustration -- to do without sounding like a total bitch. Since I really don't want to keep repeating old patterns with you, I thought that perhaps it would be better if I just stepped away for a bit and hoped that others might try to help you make sense of what I thought was already elucidated quite well enough... and they did. You got it after all -- without any further frustration on my part, and all bases were covered. I was happy about that, and I thought you were, too, since you yourself thanked Denise first.

I totally realize that I am not the most patient person around here... and possibly way more abrasive than I even realize or want to be at times (hey, something we have in common!) -- but I am really trying a lot harder to anticipate those moments when I might say something to upset or offend you... and when I feel my patience slipping is *definitely* not a time to respond. You say that you think a one-line response like Denise's would have sufficed, but my history with you tends to make me think otherwise. Point is, how can I be sure one line is really all that's required, when I have already spent considerable time saying something that I thought was perfectly coherent as it stood and/or maybe you just weren't reading carefully enough -- after all, I had just pointed out an oversight from the P. Bush article, right? Sometimes your questions are enough to make me want to start from scratch!!! There were all kinds of things that I felt like addressing right then and there, but simply didn't have the time to do so -- Denise and Kris and John covered them all for me quite nicely (better than I could have at that moment even!), and I was very grateful for it.

So, really, I just don't know what to say to something like your last question, since everyone else seemed to get it (and usually does)... if the "fault" in our communication indeed lies with me, then I do so apologize, Anna -- but please work with me here, and allow me the leeway to defer response when I feel that it's necessary. Realize that I'm only trying to keep the civility between us, okay??? :-)

Anna Gregoline | March 13, 2005
I'm sorry I was dense and didn't get it right away. I guess in the future I should ask, "Can anyone explain why Amy said that?" instead of asking you, the poster. I would rather go to the source for explanation of the source's comments, but if that bothers you, then I won't ask you to explain any of your comments further.

I feel sad that you think you need to "keep civility." Do you really hate me that much that it's hard to be civil to me? It's hard to still be on this forum knowing that so many people still think I'm a bitch and that I'm looking for trouble, which is so far from the truth. Please let your guard down and realize that I'm not looking for a way to attack you - you might feel a lot more relaxed. Let's not imagine ourselves into arguments, ok? Please re-read my comments if you find them to be abrasive - they had no such malice behind them. I know that only a few people believe that about me, but it's true.

I don't think my future on this forum is very good sometimes. I know that I've been abrasive in the past, but the blow-ups that caused the system shut-down were NOT in that vein. The slight Lori felt I made against her was a misunderstanding and I know our fighting went too far, Amy - but I was surprised that even after a reconciliation thread to find that we weren't starting out with a fresh slate. If you're holding onto "history" then we probably WON'T get along, but if that's the case it might be because you don't want to move on. That's alright if you don't, but please understand I hold no grudges or preconceptions about you as of this writing.

I always give people the benefit of the doubt. I can't hold on to the idea that someone is looking for trouble, or is an awful person. I don't understand the idea of expecting trouble, expecting arguments. This might sound fruity, but ever since I've found this "pagan credo" I've found it very helpfu to my way of thinking - the one that I repeat to myself all the time is, "May I always remember that I create my own reality and that I have the power within me to create positivity in my life." I'm giving out the most positive vibes and thoughts towards everyone on here and trying to make my words both represent what I'm trying to say and be peaceful. I am not, and have never been, a fan of conflict. When Scott's site was shut down, I cried and cried! I don't like being reviled as a troublemaker, and I don't like it when people fight. Confrontations make my stomach hurt. I don't look for them, believe me! I've been trying my best to get along with everyone and be as diplomatic as possible in my responses, but perhaps without the benefit of voice inflection, I will always come off abrasive. But it won't help if people are still waiting for me to say something that they can perceive as hateful.

Re-reading this I can take it as if I'm trying to act like the better person here - that's not the case either. I'm trying to show how I feel about the situation now, and give my impressions of how you might be feeling about me and everything. I hope that in the future, you and whoever else who might distrust me or hate me on here will agree with Scott in that I'm not trying to cause any harm.

Scott Hardie | March 13, 2005
Could you two please take this to private communication like you agreed to do? (link) Some of us are still hoping to discuss the losing Democratic strategy and the racial makeup of the Bush family.

Jackie Mason | March 15, 2005
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Kris Weberg | March 15, 2005
Howard Dean? Really? I liked him because I felt that he was saying things that seemed unpopular according to "conventional wisdom." Remember, when Dean started out, John Kerry was a guy who voted FOR the Iraq force measure. Dean's also pro-Second Amendment, and always has been.

Ironically, Dean is in many ways more centrist than Kerry. Always has been, if you look at his gubernatorial record in Vermont. He's been pretty consistent in terms of his positions for some time now.

Steve Dunn | March 17, 2005
Why is it that no mattter how long I drift away from this board, every time I return Amy and Anna are fighting?

Scott, you're wrong about political strategy. The ONLY way to get elected in a two party system is to appeal as much as possible to moderates and siphon off votes that could just as easily go to the other party. "Standing on principle" is not the business of Democrats or Republicans - their business is building the largest possible coalition. If you want to stand on principle, become a Green or a Libertarian and don't worry about winning elections. If you want to win elections, play for the center.

This is not to say that the PA Dems should nominate a pro-life candidate, or that Casey is a good candidate. I'm speaking only in generalities.

Steve Dunn | March 17, 2005
Y'all are way too hard on the Bushes for referring to their Latino family members as "brown." My symphony conductor in college was married to a Mexican woman he referred to as B.K. for "Brown Kid." People in families (and friends for that matter) refer to each other by affectionate names - we should be cautious about drawing broad conclusions from them.

Erik Bates | March 17, 2005
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Scott Horowitz | March 17, 2005
I had a friend in college.. mother Japanese, father Jewish. We called him JJ, hell his email was japjew

Jackie Mason | March 17, 2005
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