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Powerful stuff Boomer. You've got me re-thinking my position on the democratic leadership, with this coming from an Edward Kennedy follower and all. Moyers is the best, and PBS is really sticking its neck out, eh?
I watched the whole interview, it was excellent.
On what's really happening in the health care fight:
MOYERS: I don't think the problem is the Republicans . . . .The problem is the Democratic Party. This is a party that has told its progressives -- who are the most outspoken champions of health care reform -- to sit down and shut up. That's what Rahm Emanuel, the Chief of Staff at the White House, in effect told progressives who stood up as a unit in Congress and said: "no public insurance option, no health care reform.
And I think the reason for that is -- in the time since I was there, 40 years ago, the Democratic Party has become like the Republican Party, deeply influenced by corporate money. I think Rahm Emanuel, who is a clever politician, understands that the money for Obama's re-election will come from the health care industry, from the drug industry, from Wall Street. And so he's a corporate Democrat who is determined that there won't be something in this legislation that will turn off these interests. . .
- snip -
I'd rather see Barack Obama go down fighting for vigorous strong principled public insurance, than to lose with a [corporate-dominated] bill . . . . the insurers are winning. Everyone already knows the White House has made a deal with the drug industry -- promising not to import cheaper drugs from Canada and Europe - promising not to use the government to negotiate for better prices -- that deal has been cut . . .
There's this fear that Barack Obama will become the Grover Cleveland of this era - Grover Cleveland was a good man, but he became a conservative Democratic President because he didn't fight the powerful interests - people say Obama should be FDR - I'd much rather see him be Theodore Roosevelt --- Teddy Roosevelt loved to fight - ... I think if Obama fought instead of really finessed it so much . . . I think it would change the atmosphere.
Now they’ve shifted the mission of troops: to protect the villages of Afghanistan. 100,000 Americans can’t protect the villages of Afghanistan – and now they say we’re going to be there to build a nation – we’re not good at building other nations – we’re hardly good at building our nation. If you're an Afghani and look up and see Arnold Schwarzenegger and the California legislature coming to build your nation, you’re going to run – you’re going to put up a No Trespassing sign. We need to come home.
I never miss Bill Moyer`s or Bill Maher`s show. These two guys are incredible. And I love PBS.
I'm aware that Kennedy was't perfect, and his support for Obama was embarrassing, but overall I did like the guy. He was a huge supporter and friend to where I live, the Lower North Shore of Quebec.
By the way, the author of Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army (Jeremy Scahill, 2008) was on Maher`s show last week, and informed us that Obama has authorized a doubling of the Blackwater force in Afganistan this year.
There are more Blackwater forces there than regular army and marine troops now is what I think he said.
Benefits: when Blackwater troops are killed in action, they are not listed in offical US statistics. Plus, Blackwater forces are not limited by general war conventions, as they are private contractors. Fuck Obama - he`s just Bush/Cheney in disguise.
According to new statistics released by the Pentagon, with Barack Obama as commander in chief, there has been a 23% increase in the number of "Private Security Contractors" working for the Department of Defense in Iraq in the second quarter of 2009 and a 29% increase in Afghanistan, which "correlates to the build up of forces" in the country.