Friday, January 29, 2021

BAUMblog: Unity Schmoonity #2

January 29, 2021

Unity Schmoonity #2

When last heard from, unity inspired a decent inaugural address and an otherwise dynamite poem. But it doesn't seem to do much for Republicans in Congress. I think Biden made a serious tactical error in puffing up that very vague concept, "unity." Because now the right-wing pundits can whine that he talked the unity talk but is not walking the unity walk --- THANK GOODNESS!

After all, there is nothing unifying about cancelling the Keystone Pipeline. Some folks thought the pipeline was the greatest thing since sliced bread, and other folks thought it meant setting fire to the planet and trashing ancestral Indian lands. Fortunately, Biden's granddaughters have no interest in unity, at least on matters of global warming, and he's got to stay in THEIR good graces!

Yes, I'm counting on Biden's granddaughters to pull Pops along. I know, I know, some were counting on Ivanka to temper Trump, and look how THAT worked out! But I think Joe's grandkids have a hell of a lot more integrity than Trump's daughter. Plus they're YOUNG. They're in the Screwed Generation. Those kids owe it to their contemporaries to use their power.

But I digress.

Unity. Sometimes known as bipartisanship when it has to do with Congress. And it IS a fine thing when both sides can support a bill. And I'm sure if Biden decided to give a great big tax cut to billionaires, he'd find PLENTY of unity with the Republicans.

I'm sorry, but this "unity" business is a pile of crap and it's what the Democrats have ALWAYS done -- that is, stake out a position a quarter of an inch to the left of the Republicans in order to find "unity," and then claim they were the party of We the People. But it simply won't do now because:
  1. Our problems are too urgent. Real solutions to the climate crisis, racial injustice, economic inequality, and rampant right-wing insanity (among other things) can be put off no longer.
  2. We the People busted our collective asses to get Biden elected, and we want payback.
  3. Biden's granddaughters.

I am not alone in finding Biden's vaunted "unity" a recipe for total failure.

Paul Krugman, in his "Four Rules That Should Guide Bidenomics in the NY Times, says"Don't count on Republicans to help govern." He points out that Obama was hamstrung by his desperate search for bipartisan support, when he could have passed a much bigger stimulus bill without it.

Krugman has a lot of credibility because he's the ONLY economist who predicted the 2008 crash. He got a Nobel Prize in Economics for actually looking at what was going on and where it was headed. Now he sees us headed into a real bad depression if the government doesn't supply major relief fast:
  • So the new administration will have to be aggressive, using whatever legislative strategies it must to get big things done. By all means, let Biden try to unify the nation; but first he has to save it.

When Biden called for "healing" and "unity" after the Capitol riots, Susan Bro felt compelled to speak up. Her daughter, Heather Heyer, was murdered in 2017 during the demonstrations by white supremacists in Charlottesville. From the NY Times:
  • Healing requires holding perpetrators accountable, Ms. Bro said. Unity follows justice. "Look at the lessons learned from Charlottesville," she said. "The rush to hug each other and sign 'Kumbaya' is not an effective strategy."
Words of truth from the mouth of a mother.

Does anyone really think the man pictured in the photo on the right above, is willing to sing 'Kumbaya' with the man on the left? I get that the man on the left is just dying to do it. But it ain't gonna happen!

Jim Hightower, a wise and delightful progressive spirit, says in his newsletter, The Hightower Lowdown,
"Push hard and fast. Don't settle. Demand big change."
He's talking to Biden, to the Democratic Party, and to ALL OF US!

About old-line Democratic Party power brokers, Hightower has this to say:
  • Preferring to cling to power as a club of comfortable insiders, they're furious that we upstarts are making gains and pushing Democrats to be...well, DEMOCRATS!...
  • This is not '92 or '08, when incoming Democratic presidents simply said "thank you and goodby" to grassroots backers, then handed the government's economic keys to Wall Street banks and corporate lobbyists. This time progressive forces are neither weak nor meek, and we're not about to be shushed or shooed by Joe or a go-slow establishment.
I subscribe to the Hightower Lowdown, a four-page monthly newsletter. I highly recommend it. He's always inspiring, informative AND fun to read. He's got a weekly email and a podcast too. Connect with Jim Hightower, a progressive Democrat who was once elected the Secretary of Agriculture of TEXAS!

His slogan:
"Everybody Does Better When Everybody Does Better."
Were wiser words ever said? I don't think so.

Here is a very empowering short video from MSNBC with Anand Giridharadas who says, "We are living through a revolt against the future, and we have to be willing to fight tooth and nail, and we have to fight to win." I was directed to this by Common Dreams, "Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community," which I subscribe to. I strongly suggest you check out Common Dreams. It's very helpful to me.

What is to be done?

If you remember, I was inspired to do something to get all the seditious Congress people expelled from their jobs. I asked for help, and Carolyn and Laurie Graham immediately volunteered, I wrote a petition on and....dropped the ball. Totally. Just didn't do anything. I was overwhelmed by all of's suggestions of what I must do, I had trouble navigating their site... whatever. I never even published the petition. Or maybe I did. I'm not sure.

I do that sometimes. Just drop the ball. Not always. I do accomplish a fair amount, but sometimes I drop the ball. I apologize, especially to Laurie, who has now sent me a link to someone else's petition to get all the Congresspeople involved in any way with the insurrection booted out. So please sign this:

Bloggelinis, there's so much to do and it's hard to know what to do first. It was certainly much clearer when we could focus on getting Biden elected. That was a simple and invigorating goal. I think we all have to choose at least one thing. I'm not clear at the moment what my thing is, other than BAUMblog. Suggestions? Terry


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