And don’t forget Ned Lamont. Also Francine Busby, Jon Tester, and Eric Massa. This is the last day of the quarter and there’s a big push for donations.

Also — somewhere this morning I read a complaint that bloggers weren’t discussing the Democrats’ “Real Security” plan. So I printed the thing out and gave it a read. (Here it is in PDF format; it’s short.) And here it is in outline form:

I. Ensure Military Strength

A. Rebuild the military; invest in equipment and manpower. This includes strengthening the National Guard.

B. GI Bill for the 21st Century — provide enhanced health and other benefits for active, reserve and retired military.

II. Defeat Terrorism

A. Eliminate Osama bin Laden, destroy terrorist networks, finish the job in Afghanistan.

B. Double size of special forces; enhance intelligence capabilities.

C. Combat (metaphorically speaking, I assume) economic social, and political conditions that encourage the growth of terrorism.

D. Contain nuclear materials; discourage nuclear weapons development in Iran and North Korea.

III. Homeland Security (Note: Can we ditch the “homeland” thing? Gives me the creeps.)

A. Implement recommendations of 9/11 Commission.

B. Screen 100 percent of containers and cargo bound for the U.S.

C. Safeguard chemical and nuclear plants, protect food and water supplies.

D. Prevent outsourcing of national security infrastructure.

E. Support first responders such as firefighters and emergency medical workers with training, staffing, equipment, technology.

F. Protect America from pandemics by investing in public health infrastructure.

IV. Iraq

A. Transition to full Iraqi sovereignty asap.

B. Insist that Iraqis get their governmental act together.

C. Engage in a “responsible redeployment” of U.S. troops.

C. “Hold the Bush Administration accountable for its manipulated pre-war intelligence, poor planning and contracting abuses that have placed our troops at greater risk and wasted billions of taxpayer dollars.”

V. Energy Independence

A. Achieve energy independence by 2020. This means no more oil from the Middle East and “unstable regions.” We’d better hope Canada remains stable.

B. Develop alternate energy sources.

Comments: As Ron Brownstein said yesterday in the Los Angeles Times, this plan lacks specifics. However, consider what “specifics” the Bushies ever churn out, e.g., “as they stand up we’ll stand down.” I would argue that the Dems can’t do much more than provide an outline until they get some power in Congress. What’s the Bush excuse?

The plan does not call for a withdrawal from Iraq. But we’ve got some working room with that phrase “responsible redeployment.” That could be construed as an endorsement of Jack Murtha’s “over the horizon” redeployment plan.

Robert L. Borosage wrote,

Democrats do pledge — however incoherently since they have no power now — to make 2006 a year of transition in Iraq. They pledge to redeploy the troops and have Iraqis take over running their own country. This is stark contrast with the Bush promise that the troops will be there till at least 2009. …

… By highlighting the difference, activists can help cement Democrats to a withdrawal posture, and help frame the choice this fall. In 2004, Democrats like Hillary Clinton and John Kerry were calling for more troops in Iraq. Now mugged by reality, Dems are calling for “redeployment.” Don’t focus on the timidity; highlight the contrast with the president. That poses the choice for the country — and locks Democrats into a clear position.

One might wish the Dems could lock themselves into a clear position, but maybe Borosage has a point.

Any more thoughts?

7 thoughts on “Action

  1. Same shit, different party…..

    Yeah, I know what you’re saying. There are some differences, but I just can’t get worked up over policy statements. Anybody can issue a policy statement. Even Republicans can do that. I’ll get exicited when I see some action.

  2. They need to pledge that there will be no permanent bases in Iraq and America will completely withdraw from the region. We don’t belong there. Imperialist.Yankee Go Home!

  3. Thanks, Swami…..why do we never get the ‘permanent bases in Iraq’ issue discussed by the MSM or our government representatives???

    Makes me wonder if there’s an actual [but secret]bi-partisan cabal at the top, sort of an unaccountable governing elite behind a front of pretend-two-party-system government…… collusion of Dems and Repugs, both sides having replaced notions of statesmenship with that easier path of serving and being re-elected by a powerful moneyed elite. I have wondered about this for a long time……especially when I ask myself why someone would spend millions to gain a political office that pays a couple hundred thousand in salary. If someone does run for statesmanship reasons, I expect them to act like statesmen, the way JFK did. Today; we have weenies on both sides, with a huge pile-on of criticism of any who wish to behave as statesmen, like Howard Dean or Russ Feingold [both heroes to me]
    I am just particularly bummed today about Obama backing Joe Lieberman. AAAARRRGGGGHHHH

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  5. I believe they got specific where they could.

    A. Implement recommendations of 9/11 Commission.

    B. Screen 100 percent of containers and cargo bound for the U.S.

    The rest is as specific as possible considering how many months will have passed before they can do anything. Situations change.

    As for item B above. I have my doubts unless they are talking machine scanning. The volume is just too huge.

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