Joe Scarborough, Michael Bloomberg, Joe Lieberman to celebrate their centrism

The supposed independents launch a well-funded organization dedicated to solving America's problems with "civility"

Published November 30, 2010 11:01PM (EST)

Joe Scarborough and Michael Bloomberg
Joe Scarborough and Michael Bloomberg

Sanctimonious self-appointed "centrists" with no constituency outside of their social circles to launch meaningless-but-well-funded campaign in support of their admiration for themselves, Howard Fineman reports.

WASHINGTON -- TV's Joe Scarborough, who today dismissed Sarah Palin as a symbol of "anti-intellectualism" with a "dopey dream" of being president, will help headline the launch next month of a new national group dedicated to restoring civility in politics.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is also expected to take part, along with an array of other self-described centrists, including retiring Sen. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.), Sen. Joe Lieberman, (I-Conn.), former Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.), Rep. Chris Shays (R-Conn), Los Angeles's Democratic Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Sen. Deb Stabenow (D-Mich.), former Gov. Christie Todd Whitman (R-N.J.) and former Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-N.Y.)

What can you even say about that lineup besides "where's Harold Ford"?

It gets even more ridiculous: The "No Labels" organization (I'm not sure whether to blame Naomi Klein or feel bad for her) was founded, of course, by longtime Democratic fundraiser Nancy Jacobson -- the wife of pollster grifter Mark Penn -- and Bush and McCain media guru Mark McKinnon. The group -- which promises that its not a stalking-horse for a third party -- demands that everyone in politics just civilly solve problems from the "pragmatic center," which is, if you'll permit me to be briefly uncivil, childish and stupid.

This is boilerplate that I plan on adding to all posts I write about this organization from now on: There is not a secret majority of fed-up Americans that agrees, politically, with center-right "reasonable" Republicans like Scarborough and Bloomberg and Lieberman. Lieberman doesn't have a shot at reelection and Bloomberg is disliked by most Americans. "Civility" is a meaningless buzzword, though they seem to define "incivility" as "disagreeing that vague center-right policy proposals will solve America's problems."

By Alex Pareene

Alex Pareene writes about politics for Salon and is the author of "The Rude Guide to Mitt." Email him at and follow him on Twitter @pareene

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Joe Lieberman Joe Scarborough Michael Bloomberg No Labels War Room