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Cavemen vs. Cave-ins

Senate Dems caved to a deeply unpopular Prez
by granting immunity to spying phone companies.
But it's the backward-thinking President
who made this plan his domestic legacy.

Congressional Dems consider off-shore drilling,
caving to pressures over gas prices...
but McCain's scrapping all environmental plans
& the Right denies climate change completely.

And Dems have still not changed course in Iraq.
But it's McCain's war-mongering sensibilities
that jokes about killing Iranians with cigarettes.

On one hand, anti-progress, war-like thugs.
On the other, a party that hasn't stopped them.

We definitely don't want to be ruled by Cavemen let's figure how to stop these Cave-Ins.

Whether you're venting, ranting, escaping
or ready to push for a better America,
come share your thoughts & a pitcher or two
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

The John McCain Comedy Jaunt

A little look into our recent John McCain themed Laughing Liberally Show, with Cliff Schecter author of "The Real McCain" and Paul Waldman author of "Free Ride".

John McCain is Definitely NOT Laughing Liberally

As we noted before in the Blogging Liberally Daily Digest, John McCain made quite the "Hey, let's kill all the Iranians," joke on Tuesday. Here's the video:

Matt Yglesias raises an interesting point:

When you look at something like the AP's covering for John McCain as he embarrassingly jokes about his desire to kill Iranian civilians, it's worth considering how the AP would have reported this if the shoe were on the other foot. Ahmadenijad makes a "joke," at a political rally, about killing Americans. Soft-focus human interest story? I doubt it. Heck, what would John McCain's reaction be if that happened?

Reading Liberally: Read of the Day

The one thing that every liberal must read today:

Bush's Secret Army of Snoops and Snitches
by Matthew Rothschild, The Progressive

Matthew Rothschild discusses "a new class of everyday spies, from paramedics to utility workers, are being recruited to be 'terrorism liason officers'." This program, he says, may be the real legacy of Bush's "assault on our civil liberties.

Calvin Williams is Living Liberally

Talking Liberally Progressive Parley
by Mazhira Black

Calvin Williams is a Fellowship Coordinator with Young People For, a People For the American Way Foundation initiative. He currently resides in Brooklyn, NY and spends his downtime performing spoken word, playing guitar, blogging, and occasionally brushing up on his b-boyin’ skills.

Mazhira Black: What does Young People For do and why is it important?
Calvin Williams: YP4 is a leadership development program for college students who want to create sustainable change in their communities now and identify their leadership role in the progressive movement in the future. We structure our program to support their leadership development no matter what work they want to do. It provides for our fellows the ability to identify what their leadership role will be and connects them to the networks, resources, and people who can help them take that next step.

MB: How did you get involved?
CW: I was in Montgomery Alabama teaching when I realized that my passions were pulling me deeper into social justice in a place where I could continue developing mentorships with students outside of the traditional classroom setting. I was looking for something that was grounded in the grassroots/popular education structure of allowing people to define what changes they want to see. A lot of issues connect on many levels personally and systematically; I wanted to be able to work with an organization that worked for the bigger picture without trying to create an ideology that everyone else needed to follow. I realized Young People For was what I was looking for as a student when I was trying to create organizations and build coalitions at LaGrange College. Had I known that there was a broad network of students experiencing the same situation and thriving, it would have been helpful to have that network. Looking back on it at that moment I knew it was the right fit the right time, filling the right need, two years down the road I still feel that way.

MB: How do you explain to family members what you do?
CW: First I have to give concrete examples through stories about the work I do with fellows. Then I can connect it back to how this would have helped me when I was in college. The last strategy is telling them about the inspiration I gain from the fellows. Nobody is surprised about the work I do, they expect it, that or law school.

MB: When was the last time you were in awe of something a Fellow did?
CW: Its almost as though I expect to be in awe; no matter what it is, every person brings something unique to the table. I could talk about Kevin Killer, winning his primary by five votes. Or about Kari Fulton who works with the EJCC and was instrumental in coordinating the Power Shift conference. The ones who are successful in this program are the ones who set up others for success. Its always amazing for me to see when fellows build each other up and connect back to the network. Every fellow has a story.

Blogging Liberally: Who needs comedians when you have John McCain?

1.) Daily Kos’s update on the FISA debate: Votes are going down today. Stay tuned for more of what Professor of Constitional Law Jonathan Turley terms the "evisceration of the 4th Amendment"

2.) John McCain once again proves how funny jokes about killing Iranians can be. Good thing Cindy was there to poke him in the back this time, so he could alert us all to his awe-inspiring sense of humor.

3.) If only this were also a joke: John McCain shows some confusion about the concept of social security.

4.)Forget TextTwist—Slate has a fun, interactive and even educational game that lets you narrow down the vice presidential candidates!

5.) Speaking of entertaining election-themed distractions, it’s fun to watch Open Left’s maps get increasingly democratic as they predict the benefits of an Obama/Edwards partnership.

6.) If you don’t like to think that your mom might have a more active sex life than you do, this article isn’t for you. For everyone else, check out Alternet’s article on middle-aged women finding random sex on Craigslist.

Reading Liberally: A Review of John Anderson's Follow the Money

In an election year, it's difficult to concentrate on anything but the future. And that makes sense: right now our focus should be on what Obama and McCain have to offer us. But we're also coming to the end of the eight-year stretch of the worst presidential administration in history and the damage that George W. Bush and cohorts have inflicted on this country is, unfortunately, all-too-relevant to our daily lives.

Which is why it's so interesting to read John Anderson's 2007 expose of the Bush administration Follow the Money: How George W. Bush and the Texas Republicans Hog-Tied America now, in GWB's twilight years. Anderson, born and raised in Texas, presents his painstakingly researched arguments with the narrative rigor of a historian and what emerges is a startling picture of the interconnected world of the Texas republicans. "Early on," Anderson writes in his acknowledgments, "I began by amassing voluminous files, both printed and electronic, labeled 'Delay' and 'Abramoff.' At a certain point in time, I realized just how overlapping their stories were. What I had before me, I realized, was a vast web of intrigue."

Web of intrigue, indeed. Anyone who, in the face of the new election, has begun to feel the sting of Bush's legacy fade would do well to read this book and remember how orchestrated, how purposeful and how incestuous the policies of this administration were.

Liberal and Patriotic in Idaho Falls

Drinking Liberally Shot of Truth
by Seth Pearce

Every Fourth of July, we liberals are tasked by the need to prove that you can be both liberal and patriotic. We argue that our dissent, our protest, our standing up for what is right when the government is wrong, makes us patriotic. They argue that if we don't subscribe to the ruling party's platform 100%, we're not patriotic.

So what's a liberal to do? March in the parade? Watch fireworks? Stay home?
Turns out that our own Idaho Falls DL chapter has the answer to this progressive puzzle.

On July 4th, a dozen Idaho Falls liberal drinkers and some of their families entered a float in the local July 4th "Spirit of Freedom" parade. Of course a Drinking Liberally would call a float in such a parade "Free Spirits of Freedom." But they add, "It's about thinking, not drinking."

Standing in front of a portable bar, the crew tossed about 40 pounds of root beer flavored candy to the crowd and mounted a "Stop War" sign to the front of their patriotic vessel.

In this way, the Idaho Falls DL expressed their liberal views loud and proud and managed to join in and celebrate with the rest of their community, some liberal, some conservative but all American.

Sounds like a great to celebrate July 4th. One that's liberal, patriotic, and most importantly: awesome!