Tag Archives: town hall

Pussified princess Rep. Doris Matsui holding conference call, not town hall

Her hair alone is a crime, but I can’t stand U.S. Representative Doris Matsui because she represents the very worst of entrenched “Democratic” politics. In lieu of a real town hall on health-care reform, Matsui has opted for a fucking conference call — because she can.

There will be no raucous town-hall meeting on health-care reform in my Congressional district, because my U.S. representative, DINO (Democrat in name only) Doris Matsui, is a princess and a wuss.

Matsui came to office in 2005 under questionable circumstances. Her husband, Robert Matsui, was a career politician, having been in the U.S. House of Representatives for more than 25 years, from 1979 to his death on Jan. 1, 2005.

He had won re-election to the U.S. House for his Sacramento-area district yet once again in November 2004, and then, just the next month, in late December 2004, he was hospitalized. And then he died on Jan. 1, 2005.

Now, in his 2004 re-election campaign, Robert Matsui had never let his constituents know that he was ill. Not a word about it. According to Wikipedia, Robert Matsui died of a rare blood disorder called myelodysplastic syndrome (of which astronomer Carl Sagan and children’s author Roald Dahl also died; there is some trivia for you).

My reading of Wikipedia’s article on the syndrome (which I linked to above) indicates to me that it’s unlikely that Robert Matsui had had no idea on Election Day 2004 that he had the disease or at least some serious health problem or problems; few diseases kill you within two months without your having had serious, usually long-term symptoms to alert you to the disease. 

My guess is that Robert Matsui was aware of his terminal illness on Election Day in 2004 but that he and his family and his closest associates kept it quiet because they all wanted his wife, Doris, to succeed him in the U.S. House of Representatives. My guess is that it was the couple’s plan, well before Election Day 2004, that after his death, Doris would succeed him in the House. Of course Doris has denied that there was any such plan (I heard her deny this myself at a rare [for her] public forum) — but of course she would deny that whether it were the case or not.

In any event, a special election was held on March 8, 2005 to fill the deceased Robert Matsui’s seat, and even though it was a longshot to prevent Doris Matsui, with the Matsui Dynasty brand name behind her, from getting her greedy grubbies on the Congressional seat vacated by her late husband,  I actively supported one of the many others running for the seat in the special election, progressive (that is, real) Democrat Julie Padilla. I knew that once Doris Matsui got in, ever getting her out would be like pulling teeth.

In the special election Padilla came in at a distant No. 2 to Doris Matsui, with 9 percent of the vote to Matsui’s 68 percent. (A Repugnican candidate came in at No. 3, with 8 percent.) Of course, Matsui, who had been a Washington lobbyist and who had worked in the Clinton White House, had the entire Democratic Establishment Machine (DEM) behind her, and Padilla had those of us with consciences who don’t march in lockstep with the DEM. The Matsui camp had all of the money and all of the political might; we of the Padilla camp had only right on our side.

Matsui was roundly criticized for skipping out on appearances at debates and other public forums in the short campaign period for the March 2005 special election. But why should she have bothered? She had the Matsui Dynasty brand name and the DEM behind her. It was going to be a cakewalk — and it was.

So now, it is unsurprising that Doris Matsui has chosen a “telephone town hall” on health-care reform instead of an actual town hall. Um, isn’t a “telephone town hall” just a fucking conference call?

I got an automated call on my voice mail from Doris herself on Thursday. She says in the message that she’ll have her “telephone town hall” on Sept. 3, this coming Thursday. To be able to participate, she says, I should press “1,” but since it’s a voice mail, I don’t know how I would participate in the conference call even if I wanted to (which I don’t, since Doris nauseates me with her pretense of being so sweet and meek and delicate even though she has been part of a powerful political dynasty for decades).

The Sacramento Bee has criticized Doris Matsui for once again skipping out on facing the people face to face. Here is the Bee’s editorial from yesterday:

Back home for the August recess, members of Congress in our region are meeting with constituents. They’re conducting telephone and face-to-face town hall meetings to present updates and hear concerns on health care legislation.

With one major exception.

Rep. Doris Matsui, D-Sacramento, has planned no face-to-face town hall meetings to date.

She will hold one telephone town hall at 7 p.m. Thursday, calling all registered voters with phone numbers on record – others can sign up for the call. She has said telephone forums allow her to reach more people. That’s true.

But it’s no substitute for a member of Congress having face-to-face contact with constituents. Matsui seems to think that her recent “health care tour” – meetings with patients, doctors, nurses and medical staff at local clinics, hospitals and labs – is enough face-to-face engagement.

It’s not. Matsui is on a key committee that is drafting health care legislation. She needs to stand before a skeptical public and show that she understands the issues, can explain them in plain language and can make a strong case for reform now.

She needs to show that she is not afraid of dissent – and can set a civil, respectful tone in addressing those who disagree. She needs to experience firsthand the passion, the anxieties and the compelling stories that people bring to the debate.

To date, the face-to-face town halls in our region have been filled with vociferous, exuberant individuals – but no shouting matches or shoving. People applaud and boo. They make their views known. That’s democracy, and Matsui should embrace it.

Unfortunately, her refusal to hold face-to-face town hall meetings is all too reminiscent of her refusal in the 2005 special election campaign to debate rival candidates. Matsui finally reversed her position and participated in two forums in 2005 – something she should do today.

Matsui still has time before Congress reconvenes Sept. 8 to schedule at least one face-to-face town hall meeting.

Doris Matsui most likely won’t do that, of course.

Doris Matsui is yet another baby-boomer asshole (that’s pretty much redundant, of course…) with a sense of entitlement. Why should she work when she doesn’t have to, when she can coast on her Mastui Dynasty brand name and the political connections that she and her dead husband developed over decades? After all, didn’t that strategy of coasting on the family name and the family’s political connections work well enough for her fellow baby-boomer asshole George W. Bush?

Embrace democracy? Oh, I’m not holding my breath that Doris Matsui ever will do that.

Hopefully, this corrupt brand of politics, and all political dynasties (Bush, Clinton, even Kennedy, et. al.), will die with Doris Matsui and her ilk.

And heads up, my fellow Sacramentans: Although I expect Doris Matsui to try to hold onto her seat until she dies, like her husband did, Robert and Doris Matsui had a son together

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Disrupting democracy IS un-American

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is the woman whom the wingnuts love to hate, second only perhaps to Billary Clinton. (Hell, I love to hate Billary — her Repugnican-like rhetoric during her battle with Barack Obama for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination I cannot forget or forgive — and I’m not even a wingnut!)

My criticisms of Pelosi would be along the lines of my criticisms of Billary, and I have had problems with Pelosi for a very different reason than the wingnuts’ reason: Pelosi isn’t left-wing enough.

But I wholeheartedly agree with Pelosi that the Repugnicans’/wingnuts’ recent rash of disruptions of town-hall meetings is “un-American.

A town hall — an antiquated thing, it seems, in the year 2009 — is supposed to be the grassroots democratic process at its best, is it not?

So for individuals — egged on by corporate and plutocratic interests to fight against their own best interests and to fight instead for corporate and plutocratic interests — to disrupt town halls in order to shut down the democratic debate indeed is anti-democratic, and if we define “democratic” as what it means to be “American,” then the orchestrated disruptions of town hall-meetings indeed not only is un-American but is anti-American.

(The disruption of the democratic process, especially by the corporatocrats and plutocrats, is as American as apple pie, you might argue, and you are correct, but it’s the ideal that I’m talking about here.)  

The Repugnicans and wingnuts love democracy only when democracy goes their way. If democracy doesn’t go their way — such as it did not go their way on November 4, 2008, when Barack Obama and Joseph Biden defeated John McCainosaurus and Sarah Palin-Quayle — then the Repugnicans and wingnuts will disrupt the democratic process altogether, such as they did when Al Gore won the White House in 2000 but BushCheneyCorp stole the White House from Gore, and such as the Repugnicans and wingnuts are disrupting the democratic process right now by the orchestrated disruptions of town-hall meetings, which go way beyond the putative issue of health-care reform and are about the fact that these anti-democratic disruptors just cannot accept the fact that their old white guy lost and the younger black guy won the election. 

In their defeat, the Repugnicans and wingnuts are showing their colors: they are yellow-bellied traitors who think nothing of subverting democracy when democracy doesn’t go their way.

Not only are they un-American, but I don’t consider them to be my fellow Americans, but to be anomalies — malignant, cancerous growths that should be removed from the body politic.

I fault Abraham Lincoln for not having finished the job, for the cancer has returned.

P.S. I just can’t resist the opportunity to bash Billary again. The news media today report that baby boomer Billary got sand in her vagina when someone asked her what her husband’s opinion on something is. From The Associated Press:

KINSHASA, Congo – Hillary Clinton has a message for the world: It’s not all about Bill.

The secretary of state bristled [today] when — as she heard it — a Congolese university student asked what her husband thought about an international financial matter.

She hadn’t traveled to Africa to talk about her husband the ex-president. But even there, she couldn’t escape his outsized shadow.

She abruptly reclaimed the stage for herself.

“My husband is not secretary of state, I am,” she snapped. “I am not going to be channeling my husband.”

Clinton’s presence, so bold in her historic presidential candidacy against Barack Obama, has sometimes been hard to see in the months she’s served as the supposed face and voice of U.S. foreign policy.

The president’s ambitious travels have overshadowed her, heavyweight special envoys have been assigned to the world’s critical hotspots, Vice President Joe Biden has taken on assignments abroad — and then last week her husband succeeded in a North Korean mission to free two journalists even as she landed in Africa on a seven-nation trip.

“You want me to tell you what my husband thinks?” she asked incredulously when the student raised a question about a multibillion-dollar Chinese loan offer to Congo.

“If you want my opinion, I will tell you my opinion,” she said. “I am not going to be channeling my husband.”

The moderator quickly moved on.

State Department officials said the student approached Clinton afterward and told her he had meant to ask what Obama, not Bill Clinton, thought about the Chinese loan. A senior Clinton aide said that Mrs. Clinton assured the student not to worry about it.

The student’s question, according to the State Department translation, went like this: “Thank you. Mrs. Clinton, weve all heard about the Chinese contracts in this country. The interference is from the World Bank against this contract. What does Mr. Clinton think through the mouth of Mrs. Clinton and what does Mr. Mutombo think on this situation? Thank you very much.”

It was unclear whether the French-speaking student or translator had erred. Either way, she was not pleased at the mention of her husband’s name.

The Clintons have always been a complicated couple. An accomplished lawyer and politician in her own right, Hillary Rodham Clinton has struggled for decades to balance her interests and ambitions against his. She has supported his career while looking to blaze a trail of her own — at times proud of, and benefiting from, her husband’s accomplishments, and at other times frustrated by his failings and his habit of overshadowing her, friends say….

Whether the student misspoke or whether the student intentionally asked Mrs. Billary what Mr. Billary thinks about a matter, the fact is that Mrs. Billary blew a gasket when she at least thought that she’d been asked about what Mr. Billary thinks about a matter — despite the fact that when it has been politically beneficial for either or both of them, Mr. and Mrs. Billary have been a unit.

The two Billaries for years have sent us conflicting, confusing messages at best; for instance, while I’m glad that the two Americans were brought home safely from North Korea by Mr. Billary, can we be blamed for some confusion when it’s Mrs. Billary who is secretary of state but it’s Mr. Billary who is out scooping American citizens from a member of the Bush regime’s “axis of evil”?

Get a grip, Mrs. Billary. You want it both ways but you can’t have it both ways. And get that sand flushed out as soon as possible, please.

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