Justin Krebs's blog

What's the Matter With Massachusetts?

Did the sure-thing win for Ted Kennedy's seat tumble
because of an inspiring candidate for the Dems?
Because Congress is full of uninspiring Dems
who prefer procedure to progress, donors to voters?

Was it because the GOP got a small-but-vocal base excited?
There are tea partiers everywhere, ready to rumble,
while many progressives still wait for results.

Was it because a year into Dem-controlled DC
we're still out of jobs & healthcare, in two wars,
while banks & Blackwater are back at the table?

Or was it that Dems had no real game plan
& treated their commanding majorities
like they had a slim victory & the narrowest margin?

Whereas the GOP will now act
like it has a commanding 41-59 majority.

We can ask, "What's the matter with Massachusetts?"
But it's a problem we need to answer in all 50 states.

Come out to debate & drink, sneer & strategize,
as you share a night, a talk & a pitcher or two
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Some Things Are More Important Than Tiger Woods

We sometimes hear an impulse towards isolationism.
Then an earthquake in Haiti reminds us
the role America needs to play around the world.

Economic meltdown, expensive bailouts
get Senators talking fearfully of deficits.
All of a sudden, as relief efforts are needed,
we remember what is more important than money.

We fight over rights of immigrants & border security
but looking to our neighbors in Haiti,
we realize these are silly political arguments
compared to the real value of human lives.

While we engage in nation-building in Afghanistan,
let's hope we invest in rebuilding Haiti,
our neighbor, who would welcome the aid.

As our attention & prayers turns to relief efforts
we know some things are more important than Tiger Woods

Let's remember that & turn our thoughts & hearts
to relief efforts to improve lives year-round.

You can donate to Doctors Without Borders
to support the relief effort:

You can also call on the President to grant
"Temporary Protected Status" to Haitian refugees:

And you can join us tonight to share ideas
on how we can help the world not just today
but how we can be a positive force every day
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

The End of the Decade...Too Much Like the Beginning

An act on an airline terrorizes the public
leading to a reaction fearful, confused & extreme
full of security theater & partisan accusations.

A speculative frenzy fueled by fixed numbers
deceived consumers, gamed the market
& hurt the economy -- making a few rich richer.

An open-ended war in a fractured country
costs lives & sacrifices domestic priorities
without a clear goal or exit strategy.

The end of the decade...
...sounds a little too much like the beginning.

The lesson of the "aughts" might be"
"Those who don't learn from history repeat it."

Too bad we seem not to have learned that lesson.

Come out to toast the decade gone by
& drink while discussing the decade to come
with your local progressive social club.

And Happy New Year to all.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Are There Even Three Wise Men in the US Senate

We had hoped for real healthcare reform:
cover all, reduce costs, offer a public option.
But Olympia Scrooge said, "Bah, humbug."

We wanted to expand Medicare to more Americans,
but Joe Liebergrinch stole all our joy.

We lit the lights of hope for women's rights,
but Ben Nelson blew those candles out
& no miracle could keep them burning 8 nights.

We'll get a stocking mixed with gifts & coal...
not reform that says, "God bless us, everyone!"

Yet even passing this may be a Christmas Miracle.

Thank goodness Jesus weren't born now.
Mary couldn't afford pre-natal care
& there may not be 3 Wise Men in the whole Senate.

Come share good tidings & celebrate liberally
as we warm up these cold winter nights
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

In New York City? Join the annual
Tonight (note the special date!)
Tues, Dec 22nd - 7:30 onward
Rudy's - 9th Ave btw 44th & 45th
Food, fun & a pint on us!
Questions: nyc@drinkingliberally.org

The American People: Compromised & Compromiserable

We wanted single-payer healthcare
with everyone covered & overall costs lowered
but that was considered "politically impractical"
so Democratic leaders asked us to compromise.

We fought instead for a "public option"
which would compete with private insurers
but Conservadems had guts & Reid lacked spine
& thus the Senate asked us to compromise.

Reid proposed an extension of Medicare,
a cost-efficient choice for the over-55 crowd
until Lieberman remembered whose team he's on...
not ours -- and thus we're asked to compromise.

The House compromised against women's health,
the Senate against competitive drug importation
& the White House has compromised all of us.

And it's making us compromiserable.

Raise a glass to wash out the taste of betrayal
& raise some hell to toast to something better
as you share a drink, a dream & a scheme
with your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Now He's a Nobel, Let's Aim for "No Bull"

It swells us with pride to see our President honored
& with him our country's highest aspirations for peace.
Yet as he receives the Nobel, those noble aims
are undermined by escalation in Afghanistan.

As our leader, Obama will attend Copenhagen
to call for global action on climate change.
Yet his proposals have been those of a follower,
lagging far behind our neighbors & our needs.

His call for healthcare reform drove the agenda
but his willingness to water down the work
means what could've been a bold new bill
is becoming full of bull & bipartisan bluster.

There's much about him that's noble
& today he is honored with a Nobel.
Now, let's get some progress that's no bull.

Come share a toast & a roast, drink & debate
with like-minded lefties over liberal libations
at our weekly progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

What Happens to Hope Deferred?

We were hopeful the President would change course
but should've recalled what he called the Good War,
as he asks to escalate Afghanistan quickly
& postpones a slow exit to 2011.

The House gave us hope for healthcare reform,
but the GOP has written an obstructionist handbook
& too many centrist Dems drag their feet
possibly delaying help for Americans 'til 2010.

We hoped the NY Senate would stand for equality,
shaming Maine & California, beating New Jersey
...but should've remembered this was Albany.
Now hope is derailed for another year.

Langston Hughes asked whether a dream deferred
would dry up, fester, sag or explode?

What happens to Hope deferred?
Does it dry up voters like a raisin in the sun?
Or make progressive ire fester, then run?
Maybe it sags Democrats like a heavy load.
Or, in the primaries, does it explode?

In 2010, Dems will find out...

Meanwhile share your hope & frustration
as you engage & argue, drink, debate & dream
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

The Audacity of Thanks

(Please note: due to Thanksgiving, we meet tonight!
We'll return to Thursday events next week.)

We were hopeful we elected an anti-war President
& are gratified he seriously rethinks Afghanistan
but are concerned he's considering escalation
& won't be thankful until our troops come home

We're hopeful Americans will get health coverage
& impressed we're further than we've ever been
but dismayed at rumblings of centrist Dems
& won't be thankful 'til all have healthcare.

We were hopeful we'd see a new economy
& are pleased at talk of banking reform
but frustrated with Wall Street's bulging bonuses
& won't be thankful 'til Main Street grows stronger.

Last year, we had the audacity of hope.
We're still waiting for the audacity of real change
that gives us reason to be truly thankful.

In the meantime, we do give thanks
to our farewell to Bush, to America's improving rep,
to the many people who work to strengthen
their families, communities and the world.

That's all worth toasting.

Come our to share your thanks & share some drinks
for a holiday gathering of left-leaning friends
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Reid. Right. 'Rithmatic.

Harry Reid put forth a Senate health bill.
& to see who wins & loses, read between the lines.
But to get it passed, it's Reid between the lines
of progressives & regressives ready for a ruckus.

We push universal coverage as a universal right
& parts, like skipping Stupak, Reid wrote right
...but we know the Right might fright, bite & fight.

However: 50 votes plus Joe Biden is a majority
& we have 60 votes in our caucus.
So Reid, forget the Right -- it's just 'Rithmatic.

Let's vote on this & save lives.

Come caucus & carouse with a cause
sharing a night with left-leaning company
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Make Change, Make Dollars...Makes Sense

Veterans Day reminds that to honor our troops
we need to make change in Afghanistan,
& stop spending their lives & our billions
on a problem with no military solution.

The House passed healthcare reform
& now the Senate needs to stand for change
that will drive down costs & save money
& more critically will save Americans.

Wall Street's winning out over Main Street
so it's time to change how banks do business
& truly invest in jobs & security for all of us.

When you make change, you can make dollars
...& that just makes sense.

Let's hope Obama, the House & Senate do the math.

Pour out your thoughts as we pour some pitchers
& toast & talk & dream & scheme
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

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