Wednesday, November 3, 2010


It didn't take long for Maryland Democrats to start trying to put Republicans in the corner and telling us to shut up and take it. As noted previously, I was on the Marc Steiner Show today opposite Delegate-elect Mary Washington from the 43rd District. The basic gist of her performance to me, being on the receiving end of it, was contempt; contempt for the opposition to the President and to the Governor, contempt of the ideas of Republicans (saying that I was speaking only from "Glenn Beck's talking points"), and contempt for the fact that I had the moxie to wear this shirt. She was even offended that I dare care her a liberal.

Here, listen to it for yourself and see what you think about it:

And that is the basic contempt that Maryland Democrats have for you and your conservative values.

If you are anything like me.......this reminds me why we will continue to battle the Democrats in Annapolis, and continue to provide a voice for middle and working class Marylanders.


Rick Bestany said...

I have the same shirt. I will be wearing it proudly as we load up the truck and head for Delaware. Screw these moonbat liberals. Maryland is toast.

Mark Newgent said...

And Steiner was dead wrong about support for the public option.

"In the August NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, 43 percent were in favor and 47 percent were opposed to a public plan “administered by the federal government.” In follow-up questions, more people agreed with the statement that such a plan would limit access to doctors and treatments than agreed with the statement that it would lower costs and provide healthcare for all."

John J. Walters said...

Well, to be honest, I feel like they could very easily accuse you of "contempt" for wearing that shirt, although it is funny and I personally hope it comes true.

I do have to agree with you: dems often do have some marked contempt for reps. In the conversation I refer to in my policy blog today ( I had one person claim that "if bad decisions were made illegal then voting republican would be a felony."

True, many dems hate reps, but it goes both ways. I think the surest way to enact change is to find some way to work together, as tired as it sounds.

streiff said...

they should have contempt for us. We're not a threat to them.

I'm not a believer in this whole "work together" thing. If there is one lesson anyone should take away from Tuesday it is that the new Republican House majority was elected to oppose Obama's agenda.

Right now our problem is that most of our caucus act as lapdogs on the Dem budget and tax increases and their expansion of state power. Why would anyone, as the saying goes, vote for a fake Dem when they can vote for a real one.

It isn't like our ideas are unpopular. Hell, MoCo voted down a tax increase (Question A) on Tuesday. We just don't field candidates that believe in our ideas, they, on the other had do field believers.

Franz said...

It surprises me that Brian Griffiths apparently fails to understand the bitter and rather obvious irony in his charge that Democrats treat Republicans with contempt, esp. after the campaign of right-wing anger and hostility we've just been through.

For two years, the president and his allies have been subjected to a campaign of constant vituperation from the right, one that regularly questions President Obama's citizenship, patriotism and sanity and charaterizes progressive people as un-American, disloyal threats to our national identity and even survival. Did Mr. Griffiths somehow miss all this?

If Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity want to call the president and ridicule liberals and progressive, or Sarah Palin wants to suggest that "real" Americans support her and Sen. McCain, well, they're within their rights to do so. But progressive people and liberal values are part of the American mainstream too. Conservatives carried the day nationally on Tuesday but liberals won, you might recall, victories (or majorities) in the presidential elections of 1992, 1996, 2000 and 2008 and strong legislative victories in 2006 and 2008 along with sweeping victories across Maryland on Tuesday. And many of us are very tired of being called un-American or "femiNazis" and of the constant ridicule and name-calling from the right.

Passion and name-calling are part of politics of course. But if those on the right could control their contempt and stop questioning the decency and patriotism of those they disagree with, then perhaps we could have a more rational discussion of the issues that both divide and unite us.

Franz Schneiderman

streiff said...

you won a "sweeping victory"? you mean by retaining the seats you've held with monotonous regularity for 30 or so years you won a "sweeping victory?"

If there was any victory Tuesday it was Andy Harris taking back traditionally Republican MD-01 from the goofy Frank Kratovil.

But to your larger point, I'm in agreement with you. Dems being contemptuous of Republicans doesn't bother me because their opinion doesn't matter to me. I expect they feel the same way about my contempt towards them.

But so long as the left lacks patriotism and decency it is hard to imagine what common ground we share.

Mark Newgent said...

So sayeth Mr. Scnheiderman the former LTE editor from the Baltimore Sun.

Franz you conveniently forget the bitter vitriol from so called tolerant progressives thrown at George Bush all in the name of patriotic dissent

But now that Obama is president dissent is no longer the highest form of patriotism.

Franz if you were a regular reader you would know we have condemned-- Brian in particular--those on the right comparing Obama to Hitler and idiotic birthers. But hey why let those annoying facts get in the way of your rant.

And, Franz I await your condemnation of progressives who routinely call us fascists--even though fascism properly understood is a movement of the left.

As far as Maryland goes we lost the election, but those 60+ seats in the House of Representatives and healthy gains in the Senate prove we won the argument.

Franz said...

I don't want to get into a back-and-forth here. But I have to note that Streiff's comment underscores my point about where most of the vituperation and contempt comes from in our public life: from the angry right, not from the liberal left.

I think he misunderstands me on one point, however: Although I love a good argument and don't mind some name-calling along the way, I don't think we ought to be contemptuous of one another or be indifferent to contempt becoming the currency of so much of our public life.

Indeed I think that, as Marylanders and Americans, we share much more common ground than Streiff acknowledges, and that the kind of contempt he expresses only corrodes and undermines the values we share and the decency of our public life.

And by the way, Mark Newgent isn't quite right about the public option. While what he says about the WSJ/NBC News poll is true, polls by Newsweek, McClatchy, the Kaiser Family Foundation and CNN in early 2010 all showed majority support for a public option in the health care bill. So Marc Steiner in fact had a valid point, although I thought he overstated it on the show...

streiff said...

"angry right and liberal left". Cute. Real cute. Stunningly dishonest but cute.

Mark Newgent said...


You're ignoring the major point of the NBC/WSJ poll. Once people found out the details of the public option--that it would limit access to doctors and treatements-- they quicky soured on it. Whereas the polls you point out show support for it but with no follow up on the particulars. Big difference there.

streiff said...

and once they found out that the treatments you could receive seemed to be apportioned based on the perceived value of your life they soured on it a bit, too.

Franz said...

I know how you folks loathe the Baltimore Sun but I didn't say anything dishonest and I didn't ever say that dissent from the president's agenda was unpatriotic.

I have dissented from the agendas of many presidents and expect to do so again in the future. I do think that much of the vituperation heaped on this president from the right has been unfair, inaccurate and corrosive of rational debate but, unlike many on the right, I do not question the loyalty of those who disagree with me or dispute their right to call the president crazy names.

Mr. Newgent is wrong about one other thing, too: The argument isn't over. The great thing about political arguments is that they go on and on as our debates are ceaselessly renewed. As I noted above, conservatives obviously won big nationally on Tuesday. Now many of them seem to think they've permanently won the argument. After Obama's landslide two years ago, many progressives thought they had finally won the argument, once and for all.

Well, many progressives were wrong then and many conservatives are wrong now. The debates and the arguments will go on and each side will have its days. That's what we call democracy, and its value is a core commitment that I think we all share.

I just wish we could conduct those debates in a somewhat more reflective and respectful fashion.

Brian Griffiths said...

And of course let me take you back to 2008 when the aforementioned Franz Schneiderman was covering up both blatant sexism against Sarah Palin and blatant racism against Michael Steele that was seen in opinion pieces of the Sunpaper. How quickly that we forget that.....

As far as all of the other things Franz missed, I think that his ignorance on my position on these things speaks for itself.

jsmdlawyer said...

Fascinating conversation here, folks. Great way to demonstrate the civility and reasonableness of Republicans.

By the way, Streiff, the ambulance fee that was voted down in Montgomery County was in no way, shape or form a "tax increase." It was a fee that virtually every regional jurisdiction charges for ambulance service that was to be recouped solely from health insurance companies. If health insurers pay for doctors and x-rays and surgeries and diagnostic tests, why shouldn't they pay for medically necessary ambulance rides to the hospital? They do it in DC, and they do it in Virginia too.

Under the bill, no resident of Montgomery County would ever be charged anything, even if they had no health insurance. No copays, no deductibles, no bills, nothing.

The bill was defeated on the basis of scaremongering by the volunteer firefighters, who claimed that people would be dissuaded from calling 911 for fear of a fee that they wouldn't have to pay, despite the absence of any evidence supporting this claim from other jurisdictions that have such fees. The volunteers' opposition is also based on increasing antagonism between the volunteer firefighters and the paid firefighters, which has been going on for years now and is only tangentially related to the ambulance fee issue.

How does all this compute to the voters having "voted down a tax increase" in your worldview? Help this evil liberal understand, as I'm apparently too busy insulting and showing contempt for Republicans.

Jonathan Shurberg

streiff said...

actually I was so stunned by your callous disregard for the truth that I didn't have time to look for insults or contempt.

Hey, Bruce Godfrey recommended the other day that you spend more time running your legal practice and less time trolling a website that isn't meant for you. Very good advice I thought. Why don't you take him up on it?

jsmdlawyer said...

Hmmm. You refer to a series of comments which I distinctly remember differently, but which have now been deleted from your site. I wonder why -- perhaps because I pointed out the difficulty of Ehrlich being competitive given that since 2006, there have been 15 new Democratic registrations for every one Republican registration?

BTW, how did all the poll-bashing here work out for you guys? Poll shows O'Malley up by 11. Can't be right. Poll shows O'Malley up by 14. Outrage -- Brian Griffiths uses a curse word, for gosh sakes. O'Malley wins by 13 -- I expect all those posts to be deleted within the week.

It's like 1984 in here. The past was what we say it was, until we decide that it was something else. And then it was always that, until it's no longer convenient.

And now I ask a serious question, and since you can't answer it, you descend to insults again. In a post about how uncivil Democrats are to Republicans. Irony is lost on you guys.

It's getting harder and harder to take you seriously. What's clear from the recent election returns is that Republicans need to do a better job of persuasion, one voter at a time, particularly in Montgomery County, Prince George's County and Baltimore City. What's also becoming clear is that the self-appointed intellegentsia of Red Maryland simply isn't up to the job.

Starting from the proposition that you're right and we're evil is not persuasion. Good luck with that.

Jonathan Shurberg

stonemaster said...

Maryland may be occupied by "Northern Scum" but will never be Toast as long as one "True Marylander"is still breathing.True Marylander#1-Thomas Cresap ,The Maryland Monster! Never forget your Maryland History,Marylander 1'st,American 2'nd!!!

Indyprog said...

With the election in our rear view mirror, I feel as though I should extend a heartfelt apology to the folks of the community, many of whom read here as well. For two years, I made several of their lives hell in a (successful) effort to derail the website from serving as a rallying point for opposition to O'Malley.

My motivation was business. I was working for a client. No, not the client you might think. Indyprog is actually a staff of five, of which I was one of three living in Maryland. We were tasked by Prosper with a three pronged strategy:
1. Keeping conservative anger focused.
2. Reducing political viability of non-conservative Republicans.
3. Laying a base for future expansion of conservative values.

I certainly am not proud of some of the tactics used, or the language employed. It was sometimes offensive, demeaning and dishonest. I only hope that you ultimately will be able to thank me when a true conservative emerges to accept the mantle.

As angry as some might be at his loss, Ehrlich is not a conservative and has betrayed conservative principles. He is a poor standard bearer for our battle. There are others much better equipped, one of whom is our sponsor.

In the meantime, I hope that Martin Watcher, and all the other watchers keep their hearts true and their minds sharp. The coming battle will be much tougher than any we have faced before. We have lost two additional seats and appear to have virtually no bench. Yet out of the ashes will rise a beacon of hope. You all know who it is, and you will be inspired.

It may be natural to assume that I (and my colleagues) work directly for him, but nothing could be further from the truth. Our strategy and tactics are our own: offered in service, but not dictated. I hope to see you all in two years, when we begin to gather our forces.

stonemaster said...

2 years from now to gather forces? What's wrong with now???Your a fool!

Bruce said...

Without commenting on Streiff's specific comment above, I will note that the worst thing that liberals ever did/allowed conservatives to do was the degrading of the term "liberal" into a term of abuse. Liberals should not allow conservatives to b[edit]-slap them with the word liberal; the response should be "you are absolutely right I am and when you call me a 'liberal' you better spell my name right." Griffiths' antagonist was an idiot for being offended that Griffiths would want Obama gone; of course a Republican activist and organizer would want Obama to lose in two years, and would say so Conservatives shouldn't and generally don't apologize for being exactly what they are; whether they are right or wrong, why should we expect ANYONE to excrete on their own ideology or brand, or to fail to push it? That's not leadership, that's not a winning attitude.

It's insipid, bloodless liberals like Dukakis, Kerry, Gore, Carter, Mondale, Pat Schroeder and perhaps the worst of all, the self-hating half-liberal Harry Reid who have wrecked the brand. Ted Kennedy had his problems but he was able both to be a proud liberal "lion" and to make reasonable deals with conservatives on many issues, even with Jesse Helms. Pelosi isn't the problem for liberals, it's Reid. I was grossly disappointed that Sharron Angle didn't take him out, as I believe she would be much better for liberal prospects that this miserable undertaker has been through his persistent apologies for being a Democrat and a liberal for decades. What these Tea Partiers don't do is apologize for what they believe in; I respect them much more than I do miserable liberals like Harry Reid.

There are fighting liberals in the Maryland Senate - Jamin Raskin comes to mind, admittedly from a very safe district (he actually knocked out Ida Ruben, a fairly liberal pro-gay rights incumbent, in a primary in Silver Spring.) But we don't have many Jamin Raskins in Congress. We need Patton, not [edited] Droopy Dog.

stonemaster said...

Liberal's are anything but liberal.Neo-Lib = Debaucherous Pig! & don't blame that on conservatives,you pig's have done that to yourselves.

Mark Newgent said...


I would argue that you are not a liberal but a progressive. Modern contemporary liberalism is the refurbished edifice of the old progressive movement.

Progressives appropriated the term liberal around the beginning of the 20th century, when the term connotated "classical liberalism," which is more right than left.

After the Democratic execess of the 60s and 70s the term liberal became a dirty word and hence people like Hilary Clinton reverted back to the term "progressive" to refer to themselves.

Whatever the nomenclature I wish progressives were a little more honest about their intellectual and political heritage, especially as it relates to some of their forebears love affair with European fascism and Soviet communism. See Ida Tarbell, Lincoln Steffens, Hugh Johnson, Herbert Croly, Henry Wallace, and Alger Hiss to name just a few.

Not a few contemporary progressives are enamored with Mussolini's corporatism.

If conservatives have to own all the wrongs-real and imagined-of our side's past shouldn't progressives?

Martin Watcher said...


The O'Malley campaign claimed anything that takes more money is a tax, therefore an 911 ambulance fee paid by the insurance companies is a tax on insurance companies that only increases the cost of healthcare.

Bruce said...

For Mark Newgent:

"Not a few contemporary progressives are enamored with Mussolini's corporatism"

Can you identify a specific example? I do recall the "liberal as fascist" theme being one to which you have returned, and certainly Jonah Goldberg tried to pay his rent with such a book. I have not heard liberals/progressives use the name "Mussolini" except as a term of abuse for statist conservatives.

Mark Newgent said...

How about Obama himself

What is Hilary Clinton's "we're all in it together society" but a modern recasting of Mussolini's holistic totalitarian conception "everything within the state and nothing witout."

How about the Democrat architects of the healtcare bill who worked hand in hand with the insurance companies and big Pharma to craft that abomination.

How about New York Times oped darlings Paul "the beauty of pushing a button" Krugman, and Tom "if only we were China for a day" Friedman.

I'd also argue O'Malley is a corporatist as well.

These folks need not necessarily write paens to Mussolini like the NRA's Hugh Johnson to show their admiration with his corporatism.

Interestingly enough, Bruce you just proved one of Goldberg's main points--that liberals are inherently ignorant of their own intellectual tradition.

Bruce said...

Weak, Newgent. I "proved" nothing but you proved even less. As an attorney I get to hear a lot of weak arguments but really, this is asinine.

What does this have to do with Mussolini? "Corporatism?" - a term you do not define, and in this lazy crowd don't need to. As far as "progressives" not knowing "their" intellectual heritage, it isn't a heritage but the probably projected conceit of three self-congratulatory conservatives - yourself, Jonah Goldberg and probably whatever animal, vegetable or mineral bears the martyrdom of dating Jonah Goldberg.

Now if you will excuse me I need to get back to invading Ethiopia.

Mark Newgent said...

Bruce, as an attorney I hope you don't "judge books by their covers." Read the links especially the RCP piece and you'll see exactly what corporatism is and the connection to progressivism and Obamanomics.

But you're more interested in interested evading my argument than dealing with it.