One of the things I looked forward to at Netroots Nation was the opportunity to attend the plenary session with Dan Pfeiffer (White House Communications Director) and the breakout with Jeremy Bird (Obama's National Field Director). I might have more to say about the later at some other time, but I actually had to walk out of the session with Pfeiffer just a few minutes before it was over because I was so frustrated I could feel my blood pressure rising.
Interviewing Pfeiffer was DK front-pager Kalli Joy Gray (Angry Mouse). The first thing that got under my skin were her unprofessional, dismissive, irony-loaded "tut-tuts" at the end of almost every answer he gave. And then came her line about how "tired" we all are of hearing about the Lilly Ledbetter Act - which was rather ironic in itself coming from someone who is supposedly focused on the current "war on women." I'd guess she's also done with hearing about Roe vs Wade. It's just been soooo overdone. < snark >
But I was totally shocked at the ignorance she displayed about our political institutions. During the course of the interview she focused several times on legislation happening in the states about women's health and immigration - asking what President Obama is going to do about that. Is she not aware that he is not the Governor of all 50 states?
It really went over the top for me when she started the questioning you can see at about 6:00 on this video.
First of all, she wants to draw a comparison to George W. Bush, who was able to accomplish so much of his agenda. To lead into this, she states that Bush had a minority of Republicans in Congress for much of his tenure. I'd simply like her to take a look at history to get a clue. Bush had Republican majorities in both the House and Senate for 6 of his 8 years as President.
She goes on to ask "Is there anything Obama can do without Congress?" (Of course, another angle on the irony of all this is that she had previously criticized the administration for not getting Congressional approval for our involvement in Libya.) My response to her would have been to ask her to go back to her civics books and learn a little bit about the separation of powers that is written into our Constitution - and why our founders thought that would be important.
The crux of the problem is that she's saying that she wants President Obama to be more like Bush. I have 2 words for you Kalli...imperial presidency. We're not supposed to be FOR it.
Of course this session got a lot of media attention and the poutragers are giving themselves huge pats on the back for going after the administration. I'd suggest that instead they ought to be ashamed of their ignorance.