This might be the most important story of 2006. And 2008. If the Democrats will hoist a sail:
Read what Cokie Roberts said (h/t Digby) about the Senate Democrats and why they've been stalling on censure, and what Digby says about that. Read FireDogLake, and Crooks and Liars, and always, always read Glenn Greenwald, and then understand a lot of things that have kept you up nights, and take a little piece of hope with you to bed tonight.
Our leaders are, as I have said and said again, waiting for a parade to run out in front of so they could claim to be leading it. Or, in Jack Reed's metaphor, they've been waiting to see whether there's enough wind to justify them hoisting a sail. Cokie Roberts, quoted in Digby, above:
Jack Reed of Rhode Island said to me this week-end "we have a strong wind at our back and all we have to do is get a sail up, any sail, some sail" but they haven't managed to do that yet. They were interested to see how Senator Russ Feingold's call for censure worked with the blogosphere, mainly, and also in polls.
Which is fine. Really: it's great! I don't care how they get there. I don't care that they waited. I don't care whether they're in front, behind, or right beside us, just so long as the Democrats in Congress finally leave the safety of the harbor and start sailing in the right direction, where the rest of us have been pointing all along.
Regular people (not just bloggers) have been lobbying their senators (contact list) to do the right thing. And, of course, bloggers have been pressing the issue: I've been screaming my head off, and so have others. I've posted on censure and Democratic cowardice and the fatal nearsightedness of political triangulation here and here and here and especially here, and here and here and here, and that's just in the past week or so. And, thanks to the miracle of SiteMeter, I know for a fact that what I've been saying has been read by at least a few influential people, from the anonymous people whose ISP is the "U.S. Senate Sergeant-At-Arms" to Jonathan Alter of Newsweek. I don't say that to brag, but to support the suggestion that the powerful have been watching the bloggers like a sailor watches his telltales, to get a sense of which way the wind is blowing.
And if what I've been saying, and what everyone else on the leading edge of the censure issue has been saying, from Jane Hamsher to John Amato to ReddHedd to Bob Fertik and the other good people at democrats.com to Greenwald, finally convinces the Senate Democrats to hoist even a scrap of sail and get moving, then they'd better have one hand for themselves and one hand for the boat, because it's going to heel over and the water's going to start racing along the hull and we're going to be at hull speed, and planing above hull speed, faster than anyone's seen since Watergate finally caught the public's attention. The ship of state is going to be moving fast, if the Senate Democrats are ready to hoist a sail.
We're going to be moving fast because there is a gale-force wind, not just here in the blogosphere but in the letters to the editor pages of every paper and in the streets and coffeehouses and bars, and in the smalltalk among parents at the school choir recitals and soccer practices I've been to just in the last few days, and in the basement of my church just yesterday, and everydamnedwhere that regular Americans gather and talk. There is such a populist wind in favor of honesty, in favor of the rule of law, in favor of courage and sanity and against triangulation and cowardice, that any scrap of sail the Democrats can muster the courage to hoist will sail the President finally into a position of humility -- not humiliation, just humility -- before the Constitution and the People, and incidentally -- just incidentally! It's not our goal! -- may sail the Democratic Party into a majority of both houses of Congress, and then into the White House, where I hope and pray they prove themselves worthy of it.
It's populism and freedom and the rule of law and democracy, and it is that great a wind. If only the Democrats in Congress will dare to hoist the sail.
UPDATE: CONTACT INFO FOR ALL DEMOCRATIC SENATORS, INCLUDING DISTRICT OFFICES, HERE. LOBBY THEM TO SUPPORT CENSURE.
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