Corrected and updated below (on Wednesday, May 18, 2016)
Associated Press photo
Thuggish supporters of thug-in-chief Bernie Sanders thuggishly display their displeasure at the Nevada Democratic Party convention in Las Vegas on Saturday. They were supposed to take their railroading by the pro-Billary Clinton Democratic Party establishment silently and meekly, like a good Democrat caves in to evil, you see.
Billarybots, frustrated that Bernie Sanders won’t drop out of the race like he’s supposed to do, are trying to make a big deal of the reported fracas in Las Vegas on Saturday. (So much for what happens in Vegas staying in Vegas…)
No one has been hurt, mind you, but the Billarybots are going to maximize the charge that “Bernie bros” are thugs and that they are poor, civilized, wholly innocent victims. I mean, their candidate is a treasonous Repugnican-Lite sellout who is disliked more than she is liked by the American electorate by double digits in most polls, whereas the opposite is true of Bernie, who is beloved by millions, so what else do they have?
Under pressure from Democratic Party leaders to denounce ugly tactics by his supporters, Sen. Bernie Sanders instead struck back with a defiant statement [today] that dismissed complaints from Nevada Democrats as “nonsense” and asserted that his backers were not being treated with “fairness and respect.”
It followed chaos at the Nevada Democratic Party convention Saturday night, where Sanders’ supporters threw chairs, shouted down speakers and later harassed the state party chair [Roberta Lange] with death threats.
Gravely alarmed, Democrats pressed Sanders to forcefully denounce it. The dispute stands as the most public rift yet between the Sanders camp and other Democrats, and may undermine the party’s attempt to maintain a unified front as frustration mounts among Hillary Clinton supporters that Sanders is continuing his campaign with no clear path to victory.
“Our campaign of course believes in non-violent change and it goes without saying that I condemn any and all forms of violence, including the personal harassment of individuals,” Sanders said.
But far from apologizing for anything his supporters did, Sanders repeated, in detail, their complaints that they were railroaded in the delegate process Saturday night, something Democratic officials deny. “The Democratic leadership used its power to prevent a fair and transparent process from taking place,” he said.
Sanders issued his statement moments after speaking with Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid, who told reporters that Sanders had condemned the violence in Las Vegas. “This is a test of leadership as we all know, and I’m hopeful and very confident Sen. Sanders will do the right thing,” said Reid, D-Nev.
The head of the Democratic Party, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., also condemned the events in Las Vegas. “There is no excuse for what happened in Nevada, and it is incumbent upon all of us in positions of leadership to speak out,” she said.
Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., who was booed when she spoke at the convention, told reporters [today] that she’d feared for her safety and said Sanders should give a “major speech” calling on his supporters to reject violence and opt for unity. …
Gee, what to say? Debbie Wasserman Schultz is another DINO shill for Billary who has been instrumental, as head of the Democratic National Committee, in ensuring that Billary be crowned, the democratic process be damned, and also on Team Billary are the ineffectual and uninspiring center-right Harry Reid, who should have stepped down as Democratic “leader” of the Senate years ago, and Barbara Boxer, who used to be a progressive years ago but who over the past several years has become worthless (I’m quite happy that she decided not to run for re-election this year; had she run, I would not have voted for her over her support for Repugnican Lite Billary alone; no true progressive could support Billary Clinton).
So of course all of these DINO assholes on Team Billary are going to trump up the Las Vegas fracas. They have a horse’s ass in this race.
Let’s unpack that Vegas fracas: Chairs were thrown. Horrors! OK. One probably shouldn’t throw a chair at a public gathering, but no one was injured by any flying furniture. Speakers were shouted down. Oh, boo fucking hoo! It sucks to be shouted down, but it doesn’t put you in the hospital.
Count three: Death threats! Hmmm. Until and unless any of the alleged “death threats” is investigated by law enforcement, I wouldn’t rule out that a Billary supporter or supporters did it or even that the supposed recipient(s) of any death threat(s) fabricated it. There is no proof that any supporter of Bernie Sanders issued a single death threat to anyone. We have only allegations.
As far as death threats go, let law enforcement handle any alleged death threats, and in the meantime, if there is a claim of a death threat in the midst of a heated political campaign, take it with a grain of salt until and unless it’s investigated by law enforcement and proven to be actual.
I wasn’t there, but the Vegas fracas sure looks trumped-up to me — trumped-up for political purposes by the Billarybots exasperated by the fact that not all of us have given up, sold our souls to Satan, and settled for Billary.
What’s funny, I think, is that as a U.S. senator in October 2002, Billary voted for the Vietraq War, in which more than 4,000 of our troops died for the unelected Bush regime’s lies for Big Oil and for the war profiteers (including Dick Cheney’s Halliburton, with its no-bid contracts with the federal government in Iraq), and in which tens of thousands of innocent Iraqis died.
Bernie, as a U.S. representative in October 2002, voted against the Vietraq War, but the Billarybots actually would have everyone believe that war hawk Billary Clinton, whose talons are dripping with blood, is the candidate of peace while Bernie Sanders, democratic socialist of Vermont, is the ruthless, evil leader of murderous hordes!
This is some fucking bullshit.
Bernie Sanders has nothing to apologize for. He wasn’t even fucking there in Las Vegas on Saturday. He didn’t throw any chair. He didn’t shout anyone down. He didn’t issue any death threat (although it can’t be long before a crazy, lying Billarybot alleges that he has).
Nor can Bernie Sanders be held responsible for anything and everything that anyone claiming to support him does or says. Bernie can’t control millions of people, and we are responsible for our own words and actions.
At the Bernie Sanders rally that I attended here in Sacramento last week, at which at least 15,000 people attended and where I was for several hours, I didn’t see even a verbal altercation. Not one. I saw nothing but peaceniks, so there’s no fucking way in hell that I’m going to sit back while the Billarybots try to paint us supporters of Bernie Sanders as thugs. (Unlike the typical effete Democratic Party hack, I believe in fighting back.)
But, of course, this isn’t even about what happened in Vegas (that certainly wasn’t going to stay in Vegas).
No, what this really is about is the Democratic Party hacks/the Billarybots trying to bring Bernie Sanders and his supporters to heel — you know, the way Billary said that “super-predators” must be brought to heel.
These are the last gaps of the obsolete, irrelevant, self-serving Democratic Party establishment — the corrupt-beyond-belief Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the worthless Harry Reid, yes, even the now-pathetic Barbara Boxer, et. al., et. al. — who want to claim victimhood even while they’ve hardly been nice themselves, but have used the Democratic Party as a vehicle to their personal enrichment while the Democratic Party, year after year, more and more serves the moneyed elite at the expense of the rest of us, the commoners, the rabble.
These Democrats in name only are not nice people. Oh, they don’t throw chairs or even shout (that would be “uncivilized”!), but the damage that they have caused to millions of Americans (and to millions throughout the world) through their cowardly caving in to the Repugnican Tea Party and to their corporate sugar daddies over and over and over again and their craven selfishness and their having dragged the once-venerable Democratic Party so far right that with each passing year the two duopolistic parties are more difficult to distinguish, is much, much, much worse than is an airborne chair.
The smooth-talking weasel in the business suit is much more harmful and much more dangerous than is the person who tosses a chair or shouts. Don’t be fooled by the fine garb and the “polite” behavior. Underneath lurks the rabid wolf.
Bernie Sanders is correct to point out how much the Billarybots have disrespected the democratic process throughout the entire presidential primary season. He would be guilty of dereliction of duty to democracy if he did not. Every opportunity to unfairly and unjustly boost Billary over Bernie, the Billarybots have taken. This is the context in which the events unfolded in Las Vegas on Saturday, context that the guilty Billarybots of course don’t want to discuss.
Even the Associated Press news story isn’t neutral and unbiased. Look at the word choices: “ugly tactics.” I have a bachelor’s degree in journalism. In a news story you can describe events, but you don’t judge them, such as with the adjective “ugly.” A “defiant statement.” (Bernie Sanders is defiant!) “Gravely alarmed.” Hyperbolic much?
“[F]rustration mounts among Hillary Clinton supporters that Sanders is continuing his campaign with no clear path to victory.” Is the AP writer’s opinion that Sanders should shut down his campaign? (Or is the writer supposedly merely reporting the facts?) Why should Sanders shut down his campaign when Billary hasn’t secured the 2,383 delegates necessary for the nomination?
Sanders’ statement on the Las Vegas drama proclaimed: “Our campaign of course believes in non-violent change and it goes without saying that I condemn any and all forms of violence, including the personal harassment of individuals.”
But that wasn’t enough for the AP writer, who notes, “But far from apologizing for anything his supporters did, Sanders repeated, in detail, their complaints that they were railroaded in the delegate process Saturday night…”
Why should Bernie Sanders apologize for something that he did not do? Why does the AP writer have a stake in the Democratic Party hacks’ assertion that Bernie should apologize for something that he did not do?
Why would Bernie’s condemnation of “any and all forms of violence, including the personal harassment of individuals” not be enough for anyone?
Why should Bernie not reiterate the grievances of his supporters in Nevada? (Because the rabid Billarybots want him to act like a castrated man; they’re to lie and to attack and he’s to just stand there and take their hypocritically sex-based abuse, lest they call him a misogynist for defending himself. This, my friends, is neo-feminism.)
This bullshit is enough to make me want to shout and throw a chair.
Because I’m a “Bernie bro” and that’s all that we’re about, right?
It’s fine, though. The Billarybots/Democratic Party hacks do themselves no long-term favors by attacking Bernie Sanders and his supporters. Fact is, the ranks of independent voters, disgusted by the treasonously self-serving D.C. elite and their Coke Party and Pepsi Party, are growing while the ranks of the party hacks, both of the Democratic Party and the Repugnican Party, are dwindling.
The Democratic Party hacks don’t have enough numbers to win a presidential election on their own. If they make Billary their nominee, there is a good chance that they’ll see startling evidence of this on Election Day in November.
And we progressives are patient. The Billarybots are just trying to shove their widely despised candidate into the White House, even if they must cheat to do it (they have no conscience, so cheating comes easily to them). They think in the short term, because their lemming-like brains are incapable of long-term thought.
By continuing to alienate us progressives — who are Berners now because he’s our champion right now, but who will remain progressives long after this presidential election has come and gone — the DINO dinosaurs only speed up their own inescapable extinction.
P.S. Here’s an Associated Press photo of Bernie supporters protesting in Las Vegas on Saturday:
Do they look as dangerous to you as they do to me?
P.P.S. You should read the AP story in its entirety. It’s a wonderful piece of “unbiased” “news” reportage. It includes these humdingers, too:
… It [Las Vegasgate] comes as Donald Trump is wrapping up the nomination on the Republican side, yet Democrats remain divided and now some Democrats fear that Sanders’ supporters are starting to mimic backers of Trump in their sexist and aggressive behavior.
Democrats also fear that the unrest in Nevada could be a taste of what is to come at the Democratic Party convention in Philadelphia this summer.
Stephanie Schriock, president of EMILY’s List, an influential political committee devoted to electing women that is backing Clinton, said in a statement: “These disgraceful attacks are straight out of the Donald Trump playbook, and Bernie Sanders is the only person who can put a stop to them. Sanders needs to both forcefully denounce and apologize for his supporters’ unacceptable behavior — not walk away.”
… The Nevada Democratic Party sent a letter to the Democratic National Committee accusing Sanders supporters of having a “penchant for extra-parliamentary behavior — indeed, actual violence — in place of democratic conduct in a convention setting.”
Sanders dismissed that as “nonsense.” “Our campaign has held giant rallies all across this country, including in high-crime areas, and there have been zero reports of violence,” he said.
“It is imperative that the Democratic leadership, both nationally and in the states, understand that the political world is changing and that millions of Americans are outraged at establishment politics and establishment economics,” he said. …
Yup. The Democratic Party troglodytes ignore the changing political landscape at their own political peril.
Slanderously comparing Bernie Sanders’ supporters to Donald Trump’s supporters (replete with “sexist and aggressive behavior”) is complete and utter bullshit, the epitome of unfairness and untruthfulness — there have been no documented cases of any violence at any Sanders rally — and Billarybots Debbie Wasserman Schultz and the head of EMILY’s List, which is a blatantly sexist organization that endorses Billary even though she’s never met a war criminal she didn’t love (including Madeleine Albright and Henry Kissinger, who is buddy-buddy with Donald Trump, too) — it’s enough for the sexists of EMILY’s List that Billary is a woman, you see — hardly are unbiased sources for this “news” story.
Correction and update (Wednesday, May 18, 2016): Rachel Maddow’s coverage of this “controversy” is fairly enlightening. Las Vegas political “journalist” Jon Ralston apparently has shilled Team Billary’s version of events without having even bothered to talk to Bernie’s supporters, which is typical of a pro-establishment/establishment “journalist,” and very apparently there is no video of any chair actually having been thrown — only video of one individual raising one chair off the ground and then putting it down again.
So that (along with yelling) constitutes the “violence” that the Billarybots claim happened in Vegas on Saturday. Fucking liars.
Rachel Maddow — who (along with all of MSNBC) as of late has been slanted toward Billary but who still can do real journalism, unlike Ralston — interviews a Nevadan delegate for Bernie named Angie Morelli who is quite well-spoken and who gives us a lot more context to the events in that convention hall in Vegas on Saturday — again, context that the Billarybots don’t want mentioned, because it weakens their self-servingly exaggerated narrative of events.
Reportedly one or more supporters of Bernie Sanders publicly released the phone number and other personal contact information of the state’s Democratic Party chair, and nasty messages were left for her. “Death threats” some of them have been called, but I’ve only heard one voice message proclaiming that for her crimes against democracy she should be publicly “hung” (sic), not a direct death threat as in “I am going to kill you.”
If the voice message about public hanging isn’t a false flag, yes, of course that would be intimidation, but, again, there is zero proof that any Bernie supporter did it, indeed, no proof that any of the nasty messages was left by a Bernie supporter. Some, most or all of these messages were created by Billary supporters trying to tarnish Team Bernie with a false-flag campaign, for all that anyone knows.
That said, one or more Bernie supporters might be guilty of verbal intimidation, but that would be a tiny minority of Bernie supporters (and, again, Bernie Sanders can’t control and can’t be blamed for the words and actions of millions of people).
And verbal intimidation is a form of violence if you use a broad definition of the term “violence,” but most people’s own personal definition of “violence” includes physical violence, of which there was none perpetrated by a supporter of Bernie Sanders in Las Vegas on Saturday — none of which there is any evidence, anyway. (Morelli claims that the only act of violence at the convention that she is aware of is that a Billary supporter intentionally shoved her.)
So when the Billarybots claim that we “Bernie bros” have become “violent,” they’re not just exaggerating — they knowingly are lying, slandering and libeling for attempted political gain.
With Billary only around 3 percent to 5 percent ahead of Trump in the match-up polls right now — and this is because the nation’s electorate apparently hates Billary just a little less than the nation’s electorate hates Trump — you’d think that the Billarybots would be a lot nicer to us Berners instead of painting pretty much all of us as sexist, misogynist, violent animals who are just like Trump’s supporters.
The Lemmings for Billary are determined to go right off of that looming cliff that is in plain, clear view.
P.S. Yet another update: Rolling Stone claims to have verified that at least three male supporters of Bernie Sanders left nasty messages for the chairwoman of Nevada’s Democratic Party.
Rolling Stone actually contacted these three individuals, of whom it reports:
… None of them were [sic] present at the convention, or even live in Nevada. They watched from their homes in Texas, Georgia and Utah, and felt the brazen theft they saw validated their actions. All of the men we spoke to reject the idea that their words could be interpreted as threats or harassment. And all of them were concerned about the media contorting their words. So, in their words — edited only for length and clarity — here is what they had to say for themselves. …
I read what the three young men had to say for themselves, and overall I’d say that they are young and socioeconomically struggling and thus frustrated (which is a fairly redundant way to describe our young people here in the U. S. of A.), fairly new to paying attention to politics and therefore passionate, and more or less contrite that their passion gripped them to the point that they sent nasty messages to the head of Nevada’s Dem Party. (I’d say more, such as about testosterone and how it can make a young man behave, but I’ll stop here.)
Even if these weren’t three socioeconomically frustrated young men who let their political passion get the best of them, even if they were just three flat-out evil men, three people, or even 3,000 people, aren’t representative of a movement of millions, yet the Billarybots gleefully are pretending that this is the case, as happens in political dogfights.
As far as intimidation goes, anyone who is demonstrated to have broken a law (or even terms of service) should be dealt with accordingly, but if we’re going to define the term “violence” broadly, let’s also include the act of not just exaggerating, but quite intentionally lying in order to try to disempower an entire group of people based upon the words and actions of only a tiny fraction of them.
It is a lie that supporters of Bernie Sanders were physically violent in Las Vegas on Saturday. No one was physically stricken by a Sanders supporter or even physically harmed.
It is a lie that even a sizable chunk of Bernie Sanders’ supporters are prone to violence or even to intimidation, so it’s even a much bigger lie to assert that “Bernie bros” (itself a sexist term) are just like Donald Trump’s worst supporters.
In any group of millions of people, a small number are going to act like juveniles or otherwise utter words and/or commit actions that could be used by the group’s opponents to try to embarrass and disempower the entire group. That is no lie.
P.P.S. For the record, I don’t represent Bernie Sanders. I represent myself. I always have and I always will. I am an American citizen, not a campaign worker (paid or even volunteer), so I’ll say whatever the fuck I wish, as the First Amendment gives me the right to do.
The term “Bernie bro” is funny to someone like me, a gay man, but whatever; its widespread use only shortens the political survival of both the pseudo-feminists (themselves spiteful, mean-spirited, man-hating sexists) who use it and the Democratic Party that stopped representing the interests of the people many years ago.
Finally, there are many forms of violence if we want to define the term broadly. Limiting the number of debates, as corrupt national party chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz blatantly did (apparently the promised 10th debate between Billary and Bernie this month isn’t going to take place, by the way) is a form of violence. Party operatives (from Wasserman Schultz on down) doing everything in their power to give their preferred candidate an advantage (a.k.a. cheating and rigging the game), as has happened in Nevada and throughout the nation, is a form of violence.
The people who perpetrate this anti-democratic bullshit aren’t “nice.” They’re perpetrators of violence. It’s that their violence is indirect and passive-aggressive and widely socially considered (incorrectly) to be acceptable, but it causes as much harm as textbook violence, if not even more.
When these passive-aggressive perpetrators of violence finally evoke a response in their victims, they then hypocritically accuse their victims of being the violent ones.
This is textbook bullshit. Worse, it’s pretty much PSYOP.