Tag Archives: Green Party

Green Party’s Jill Stein to the rescue with push for three-state recount

Updated below (on Friday, November 25, 2016)

Although on November 8 she garnered only around 1 percent of the presidential vote — and although she was shit and pissed upon mercilessly by the shameless, anti-democratic, Democrat-in-name-only, “feminist” Billarybots — two-time Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein (shown above) is pushing for a recount in three battleground Rust-Belt states that some experts say Billary Clinton might actually have won: Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. And thus far Stein has raised more than $4.3 million for the recount effort while Team Billary, of course, has done exactly nothing.

As has been reported for the past day or two or three, “A group of election lawyers and data experts has asked Hillary Clinton’s campaign to call for a recount of the vote totals in three battleground states — Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania — to ensure that a cyberattack was not committed to manipulate the totals.”

Deadlines for requesting — and paying for — recounts in these three states are quickly approaching, with Wisconsin’s deadline being tomorrow, according to The Associated Press.

Just as Al Gore essentially rolled over and played dead apparently in order to stay “above it all” (my words) in 2000 when George W. Bush & Co. blatantly stole the White House (with a deficit in the popular vote of more than 500,000), thus far Team Billary similarly pussily hasn’t requested any recount, of course (and the deficit in the popular vote this time thus far is more than 2 fucking million).

To the potential rescue has come Green Party candidate Jill Stein, who, although of course no recount will put her in the White House, has the standing to request recounts in these states because she appeared on their November 8 ballots.

It’s quite possible that the recounts will turn up nothing, but it wouldn’t be surprising if they turned up some surprising shit. Malfeasance or “innocent error” (my words) certainly would explain how the pussy-grabbing Donald J. Trump “beat” Billary Clinton in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, when Wisconsin hadn’t gone to a Repugnican since 1984, Michigan hadn’t gone to a Repugnican since 1988, and ditto for Pennsylvania.

As of this writing, Stein has raised more than $4.3 million in donations for recount efforts in the three states.

Establishmentarians are scoffing, of course, because, just as we were supposed to do in 2000, we commoners are just supposed to shut the fuck up while the White House possibly has been stolen yet again. We’re certainly not supposed to point out that it’s possible that a presidential election still can be stolen, because such information is inconvenient and possibly even — gasp! — unsettling!

Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania together have 46 electoral votes. Should it turn out that Billary actually won them, that would boost her current electoral vote count from 232 to 278 — meaning that she, not Der Fuhrer Donald Trump, won the Electoral College.

Even if it turns out that just one of these three states actually has flipped to Billary, it it puts the entire presidential election into question (as if Billary’s 2-million-plus popular-vote lead hasn’t done that already!).

The recounts are worth it. At the very least, presumably they’d give us some degree of insight into how much we can — or cannot — trust our presidential elections.

I’ve given $20 to the recount effort; I encourage you to give to the effort too if you can.

Stein’s recount fundraising page right now says that the cost of the Wisconsin recount has been covered through the donations received thus far, and says that the recount request deadlines are tomorrow for Wisconsin, Monday for Pennsylvania, and Wednesday for Michigan.

This thing is worth a shot. Democracy — true, actual democracy — is worth it.*

Update (Friday, November 25, 2016): Politico reports that today Jill Stein filed her recount petition in Wisconsin.

Interestingly, though, the Politico writer, a Zach Montellaro, apparently can’t help himself from editorializing throughout his “reportage.” He notes that Stein “barely [made] the 5 p.m. EST deadline,” as though that were relevant (it would have been newsworthy had she missed the deadline), and he feels it important to note all of the fundraising webpage’s changes and updates, even though this (the plan to request a three-state recount) has been a rather fast-moving and quickly changing last-minute development — and even though it’s unprecedented, to my knowledge.

Montellaro also used this slanderous language in his “reportage”: “On the back of a debunked fear of election tampering in key swing states, the Green Party presidential candidate raised nearly $5 million to fund a recount effort.”

“Election tampering in key swing states” has not been debunked, not with actual physical evidence, and while Nate Silver’s fivethirtyeight.com widely has been quoted as having thrown cold water on the idea that some swing states’ reported vote totals are wrong, fivethirtyeight.com actually concluded thusly:

… It’s possible nonetheless that the election was hacked, in the sense that anything is possible. (And the best hackers are experts in erasing their tracks.)

Maybe hackers knew which control variables we’d look at and manipulated the vote in a way that it would look like it was caused by race, education and population driving different voting preferences.

Maybe hackers didn’t manipulate the share of votes in individual counties, but rather the turnout, increasing the number of votes in counties likely to favor one candidate or another.

Maybe some irregularities at the county level in early Wisconsin vote-counting are signs of wider problems. Maybe we’d find something if we dug down to the precinct level, or if we looked at other states with mixed voting systems.

But at a time when the number of voters without confidence in the accuracy of the vote count is rising, the burden of proof ought to be on people claiming there was electoral fraud.

The paradox is that in our current electoral system, without routine audits, seeking proof requires calling for a recount, which in itself can undermine confidence in the vote.

Fivethirtyeight.com got it right there until it totally pussed out at the end for whatever reason or reasons (knee-jerk, self-serving establishmentarianism, apparently, but who knows?).

“The burden of proof ought to be on people claiming there was electoral fraud,” but when they don’t have access to the voting system equipment, computers, ballots, etc. — which are in the sole possession of local governmental entities — how, exactly, can they prove their allegations without being in possession of the physical evidence?

And which is more important: “confidence in the accuracy of the vote count” (which easily could be just blind confidence) or a good reason to have confidence in the vote?

There apparently is a widespread belief (which has persisted at least since the 2000 theft of the White House) that it’s more important to have quick election results that aren’t questioned — you know, so that we don’t “undermine confidence in the vote” — than that we have election results that are accurate, and that’s incredibly fucked up.

Anyway, again, the subtext of Politico’s Montellaro’s “reportage” is to cast aspersions upon Stein, apparently. Among other things, he snidely notes that much of the money that Stein has been raising — more than $5.2 million thus far, per Stein’s recount fundraising webpage as I type this sentence — will go toward lawyers’ fees, as though it were Stein’s fault that you need lawyers to handle this shit and that lawyers, always the opportunists, frequently go on their legal-fee feeding frenzies.

I just gave another donation to the recount effort. That’s what unfair, hypocritical, usually establishmentarian attacks on people who have courage and who are trying to do the right thing often spur me to do.

P.S. Politico does make one interesting, fairly newsworthy note, which it saves for the very last paragraph; it reports that Jill Stein has raised more money for the three-state recount than she raised for her 2016 presidential bid.

I mean, that’s interesting. How relevant it is I’m not sure, but it’s interesting.

But it’s also interesting that enough people have questioned the “official” November 8 presidential election results that thus far they have donated more than $5 million to have the votes in three swing/Rust-Belt states recounted — and that they have done this outside of the partisan duopoly of the Coke Party and the Pepsi Party. (On that note, it recently was reported on MSNBC that the Obama White House encouraged Billary Clinton to concede to Donald Trump quickly you know, in order to avoid ugliness, because, you know, it’s more important to avoid ugliness and to remain “above it all” than it is to have elections in which the winners, and not the losers, actually take office.)

Again: Democracy is worth it; $5 million is chump change toward what election integrity is worth.

Anyone who has read me for the past year-plus knows that I’m no fan of Billary Clinton, but while Team Billary and the Billarybots totally fucked Bernie Sanders out of the party’s presidential nomination, the fact remains that on November 8 Billary Clinton indisputably won the popular vote by a huge margin, and Trump’s reported wins in the traditionally Democratic Rust-Belt states look suspicious enough to double check.

*Jill Stein’s fundraising webpage for the recount effort gives this important background information:

In 2004, the Cobb/LaMarche [Green Party presidential] campaign demanded a recount in Ohio. Because of their efforts, an election administrator went to jail. We also exposed the profound problems with DRE machines [link is mine], which helped launch an election integrity movement. That provoked California to engage in a “top-to-bottom” review of [its] voting system, which culminated in the abolition of DRE machines.

The Green Party Platform calls for “publicly-owned, open source voting equipment and deploy it across the nation to ensure high national standards, performance, transparency and accountability; use verifiable paper ballots; and institute mandatory automatic random precinct recounts to ensure a high level of accuracy in election results.”

Election integrity experts have independently identified Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin as states where “statistical anomalies” raised concerns. Our effort to recount votes in those states is not intended to help Hillary Clinton.

These recounts are part of an election integrity movement to attempt to shine a light on just how untrustworthy the U.S. election system is. [Emphasis is mine.]

All money raised goes toward recounts in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. We hope to do recounts in all three states. If we only raise sufficient money for two, we will demand recounts in two states. If we only raise enough money for one, we will demand a recount in one state.

We cannot guarantee a recount will happen in any of these states we are targeting. We can only pledge we will demand recounts in those states.

If we raise more than what’s needed, the surplus will also go toward election integrity efforts and to promote voting system reform.

Here are the filing fees and deadlines for each state:

  • Wisconsin: $1.1 million by November 25 [tomorrow]
  • Pennsylvania: $0.5 million by November 28 [Monday]
  • Michigan: $0.6 million by November 30 [Wednesday]

Those are filing fees alone. The costs associated with recounts are a function of state law. Attorney’s fees are likely to be another $2 million to $3 million, [and] then there are the costs of the statewide recount observers in all three states. The total cost is likely to be $6 million to $7 million. …

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

When you know you’re going to lose an election, just claim that it’s rigged

Vox.com reports that from 2000 to 2014, there were only 35 “credible allegations of in-person voting fraud” among almost 1 billion ballots cast. Um, yeah.

The next time that you hear a wingnut claim that there is rampant voter fraud within your state (or city or county or hell, even within the entire nation), ask him or her for a specific, verified example of it. Ask for a name, a place, a date, a manner.

There will be silence. (Well, maybe not silence, but you won’t get the information that you just asked for.)

Because the fact is that actual voter fraud within the United States is so very rare as to make its effect on our election results statistically irrelevant.

The only wolves who cry “rampant voter fraud!” are those who vote Repugnican — because they’re sore losers who refuse to deal with the fact that their right-wing, fascist, white supremacist, patriarchal, misogynist, xenophobic, homophobic worldview (yes, they are deplorable) is rejected by the majority of Americans.

The vast majority of the handful of cases of illegal voting that are verified are found to have been unintentional — that is, these weren’t people with the criminal intent of knowingly trying to influence the outcome of an election by casting a ballot illegally. They’re people who had thought that they were eligible to vote but who weren’t, or such cases as widows and widowers filling out and submitting the absentee ballots of their spouses who recently died, apparently failing to see a huge problem with that.

(Yeah, you’ll hear Der Fuhrer Donald Trump claim that hordes of “illegals” are crossing the border to vote illegally — you know, when they’re not too busy raping, murdering, pillaging, plundering and drug running — but he won’t bash widows and widowers, who probably are the plurality if not the majority of those relative tiny few who actually commit voter fraud. [Most of those widows and widowers probably vote Repugnican, which I’m sure has something to do with that…])

Again, intent is what makes an act fraudulent, and the form of voter fraud that the sore-loser traitors on the right claim happens the most — in-person voter fraud — actually happens the least.

Repugnican Trump surrogate Rudy “A Noun, A Verb And 9/11” Goebbels Giuliani these days frantically is alleging that in-person voter fraud is rampant, especially within our inner cities (no dog whistle there!), but of course he just throws these bullshit allegations out there and offers no actual details of any verified instances of in-person voter fraud.

That would be because, as the Brennan Center for Justice remarks in its thoughtful report “The Truth About Voter Fraud,” “It is more likely that an individual will be struck by lightning than that he will impersonate another voter at the polls.”

Yup.

Of course the Repugnican Tea Party traitors’ true intent isn’t to stop criminality that virtually isn’t even happening at all. Their agenda, of course, is to try to steal elections by crying “fraud!”

They know that this fact- and reality-free propagandistic tactic works with their base of mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging fucktards who deem themselves patriots but whose very deplorable existence only continues to drag the entire nation down to this day, which is hardly patriotic.

And, of course, the intent of false allegations of rampant voter fraud is to “justify” post-election violence by treasonous, sore-loser Repugnican Tea Party retrogrades. Recall how Repugnican traitors — George W. Bush campaign operatives masquerading as angry regular civilians — tried to influence the outcome of the presidential election in Florida in 2000 by thuggishly storming the Miami-Dade County ballot canvassing location.

A writer for Vox.com notes that

… Trump … is spending the weeks before the election telling his followers that the election is so illegitimate that they need to be physically present at polling places to monitor it. That raises the possibility of violence on Election Day. It certainly lays the groundwork for anger and denial afterward — even if Trump himself walks away and takes that nice long vacation he talks about. …

It’s more insidious than that.

Right-wing “poll monitors” aren’t there to ensure a clean election; they’re there to try to intimidate the “wrong” kind of people — that is, those who tend to vote for Democrats — from voting at all. They do their partisan profiling based upon the voter’s demographics, and whose ballots do you think they contest? How often, do you think, they challenge, say, old white people and people who appear to be rich versus people of color, younger people, people who appear to be poor, et. al.?

Yes, there could be violence on Election Day if Der Fuhrer Trump’s jackbooted thugs show up at the polling places in significant numbers with the full intent to intimidate voters whom they perceive (correctly or incorrectly) won’t vote for Trump.

But there could be violence after Election Day, too, even if Billary beats Trump by a large margin, which I surmise will be the case.

You know what, though? Fuck the neo-Nazis. If they want violence, let’s give violence right back to them. We Americans must not make the same mistake that the Germans did in the 1920s and 1930s. If the neo-Nazis here at home want another Civil War, let’s hand their sorry, treasonous asses to them again.

To be clear, I’m no shill for Democrat in name only Billary Clinton. I’m voting for Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein, the only progressive in the presidential race, very most likely.* I most definitely don’t want fascist demagogue Donald Trump to be president, but I don’t want Billary Clinton in the Oval Office, either.

But I recognize that, even though the Democratic Party presidential primary process most definitely was stacked in Billary’s favor and against Bernie Sanders’ by her anti-democratic operatives within the Democratic National Committee and throughout the nation, in November Billary is going to win my state of California and thus all of its 55 electoral votes in the winner-takes-all(-except-for-Maine-and-Nebraska) Electoral College.

And I recognize that Billary Clinton is much more likely than not to be elected our next president.**

Only if it were close could the Repugnican Tea Party traitors perhaps successfully scream that the nationwide election is (going to be) rigged. But it’s not close.

Per Real Clear Politics’ average of recent nationwide polls, Billary right now leads El Trumpo by 5.5 percentage points nationwide, and the Huffington Post’s average of recent nationwide polls similarly puts Billary at 6 percentage points ahead of Der Fuhrer Trump.

There’s that and there’s the fact that while Billary Clinton’s unfavorable rating is 53 percent (she is liked by only 43 percent), Trump’s unfavorable rating is 10 points worse: a whopping 63 percent don’t like him, and only 34 percent do.

Um, yeah, you don’t win a presidential election if 63 percent of the American people don’t feel favorably toward you.

Finally, fivethirtyeight.com right now gives Trump no more than a 17.1 percent chance of winning the election — he’s at the lowest point in fivethirtyeight.com’s tracking of the race since June, and the election is only 23 days away.

Again: Trump is, in a word, toast.

He will win states where the majority of the voters are deplorable — I expect him to win anywhere from 19 to 23 states (I refer, of course, to the red states) but not even 24 states — but he won’t win the White House.

Again, as a douche bag who never was vice president, a U.S. senator or the governor of a state, Trump always was highly unlikely to become the first “reality”-television star and bankruptcy-happy billionaire to become president of the United States of America in the first place.

His loss in November, by a significant margin, will come as no surprise. I mean, I haven’t even mentioned here that he has committed serial sexual assault, and that no presidential candidate who was recorded as having bragged about “grab[bing]” women “by the pussy” (and otherwise sexually assaulting them because he is a “star” who can get away with it) ever went on to win the White House.

I suppose that if I were a Repugnican Tea Party traitor, right about now I’d be making bullshit claims about rampant voter fraud, too.

*Lately I’ve toyed around with writing Bernie Sanders’ name in, even though it very most likely wouldn’t count at all. I might do that, but I’ll probably vote for Stein, as I voted for her in 2012, since President Hopey-Changey, for whom I voted in 2008, didn’t change nearly enough during his first term, losing the Democrats control of the U.S. House of Representatives in the 2010 mid-term election, dooming any progressive agenda that he might wanted to have tried to enact after that, but in retrospect it’s pretty clear to me that he never had any real intent to even try significantly to enact a progressive agenda at all.

**This reminds me of this recent great editorial cartoon by Ted Rall:

Love Trumps Hate...What?Yes, it is going to be a stupid next four to eight years. (I don’t really expect it to be eight, though; as I’ve noted before, given her high level of unpopularity going into the job, I expect Billary to be a one-term president. She has benefited greatly from the fact that Trump has been a train wreck of literally historical proportions.)

I like this one of Rall’s too:

Donald Trump called for a lot of outrageous things throughout his presidential campaign. He wanted Muslims to be banned from entering the knighted states. He wanted to build a border wall and deport 11 million illegal aliens. He called for beating up protesters at his own rallies. Oddly, none of this made him less popular. To the contrary. What did him in, or at least looks like it might, is an open microphone moment in which he talked about grabbing women's pussies.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Der Fuhrer Donald Trump is now too close to Queen Billary for my comfort

FiveThirtyEightFiveThirtyEight

Prognosticator god Nate Silver’s fivethirtyeight.com right now puts Donald Trump’s chances of winning the White House at almost one in three. Yikes. If Trump’s chances grow, I’ll be forced to decide whether or not to give Billary Clinton’s campaign money in order to try to prevent the fascist demagogue Trump from becoming president. (Yes, it would have to be that bad for me to give Democrat in name only Billary a fucking penny.)

The presidential election is two months from today, and as I type this sentence fivethirtyeight.com gives Donald Trump a 31.2 percent chance of becoming the next occupant of the White House to Billary Clinton’s 68.8 percent chance.

That’s about a one-in-three chance for El Trumpo, which is still too close for comfort for me.

In the nationwide polling, Billary leads Trump by only 2.1 percent when Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein are included in the polling, per Real Clear Politics’ average of nationwide polls right now. (When it’s only Trump and Billary, Billary doesn’t do much better, per RCP; she beats Trump by only 2.8 percent in a two-way race. The Huffington Post’s average of nationwide polls right now puts Billary at 5.1 percentage points ahead of Trump in a two-way race. HuffPo doesn’t do an explicit four-way race like RCP does, but when HuffPo includes Johnson and all other candidates, Billary is at 4.8 percentage points ahead of Trump.)

How can fivethirtyeight.com give Billary a bit more than a two-thirds chance of winning the White House when nationwide she’s polling no more than around two to five percentage points ahead of Trump? That would be due to the states where she’s leading and how many electoral votes they have. Right now fivethirtyeight.com projects that Billary is likely to win more than 300 electoral votes (she or Trump needs 270 electoral votes to win the White House).

Fivethirtyeight.com right now gives Billary a 99.6 percent chance of winning my state of California — and thus all 55 of its electoral votes, which is more than any other state’s — so it will be quite safe for me to vote my conscience and thus to vote for Jill Stein.

I encourage you to mosey on over to fivethirtyeight.com and see where your state stands. (Just hover your cursor over your state on the graphic of the U.S. map.)

If the probability between Trump and Billary is too close for comfort in your state and you want to prevent a President Trump by voting for Billary, I can’t be mad at you for that, but if, like I do, you live in a solidly blue or solidly red state where it’s pretty fucking foreordained that Billary or Trump is going to win the state — say, by more than a 75 percent or 80 percent chance — and you don’t want to vote for Billary or for Trump, then I encourage you not to.

Take Texas, for instance. Fivethirtyeight.com right now gives Trump a 91.6 percent chance of winning Texas. Sure, you could vote for Billary if you’re a Texan voter, but she’s not going to win Texas and thus she won’t win any of its electoral votes in the winner-takes-all Electoral College system, so you might as well vote for another candidate if you don’t want to vote for Billary or for Trump. You might as well cast a protest vote, as I am doing.

Like California, Billary is going to win New York; fivethirtyeight.com puts that at a 98.6 percent chance. If you’re a New York resident who doesn’t want to vote for Billary, then don’t. She’s going to win your state and all of its electoral votes anyway. Go ahead and make that protest vote; you’re quite safe in doing so.

Take a look at fivethirtyeight.com’s list of the 10 states that are most likely to be the tipping point in the Electoral College. They are, in this order of likelihood, from greater to lesser: Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Virginia, Colorado, Minnesota and Nevada.

It all comes down to which candidate reaches 270 electoral votes (270 is the majority of the total of 538 electoral votes possible, from where Nate Silver’s website fivethirtyeight.com takes its name), so if you live and vote in a state that actually could make a difference in the outcome of the presidential election, such as Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Virginia, Colorado, Minnesota or Nevada, then by all means hold your nose and vote for Billary.

I am not voting for Billary for several reasons. Among them, in no certain order, are that, again, she’s going to win California and its 55 electoral votes whether I vote for her not; I don’t like her or trust her (I don’t for a nanosecond believe that she cares about anyone other than herself and her cronies [I’ve always seen her pandering for what it is: pandering], and she changes her political positions like a human weather vane on crack); she is center-right and Repugnican Lite (indeed, the Dallas Morning News, which hadn’t endorsed a Democratic presidential candidate since before World War II, recently endorsed Billary); as a U.S. senator she voted for the unelected Bush regime’s illegal, immoral, unjust and unprovoked Vietraq War and had no notable legislative accomplishments during her eight carpet-bagging years in the U.S. Senate; on that note, she used her surname and her status as former first lady to ascend first to the Senate, then to U.S. secretary of state, and then to the 2016 Democratic Party presidential nomination (feminism hardly is about cravenly simply riding your hubby’s coattails); and, last but certainly not least, WikiLeaks in the latter half of July released e-mails proving that top officials within the Democratic National Committee, including former DNC head Debbie Wasserman Schultz, were in the bag for Democrat in name only Billary and sought to sabotage and tank the presidential campaign of the ironically actually Democratic Bernie Sanders from Day One, as we already had figured. (As I’ve noted, that was the final fucking straw for me, and after California’s June 7 presidential primary election and the WikiLeaks revelation, I switched my registration from the Democratic Party back to the Green Party. Fuck the corrupt, anti-democratic Democratic Party!)

I am not alone in disliking Billary Clinton; per Huffington Post’s roundup of favorability polls, 55.5 percent of Americans don’t like Billary and only 41.3 percent do like her. Her numbers aren’t much better than Trump’s; per HuffPo’s roundup of favorability polls, 58.1 percent of Americans don’t like Trump and only 37.9 percent do.

It’s funny (pathetic funny, not ha-ha funny), because it doesn’t matter which candidate wins; he or she most likely will start off on Inauguration Day disliked by a majority of the American people.

Our “choice” in this presidential election is bullshit, and that fact contributes to why I’m voting for Jill Stein, even if it amounts to a protest vote.

I wrote “our ‘choice,'” in the preceding paragraph, but we, the American people, should have choices, not just the choice between only two candidates. Voting for a third-party or independent presidential candidate is a way to say Oh, hell no! to the partisan duopoly of the Coke Party and the Pepsi Party (can’t tell the difference between the two? Yeah, most of the rest of us can’t, either), which has devolved to our “choice” of Billary Clinton or Donald Trump.*

That said, when push comes to shove, yes, of course, Donald Trump is the greater evil, and I’m closely watching fivethirtyeight.com’s probability of Trump winning the White House, which is updated at least daily.

As I noted, even a 31.2 percent chance of Trump becoming president (where it stands right now) is too close for my comfort, but I’m not sure at which point (if at any point) I’d give Billary any money to help her defeat Trump. I’ve yet to give her a penny, as I don’t want her to be president, but I want Trump to be president even less.

Trump strikes me as a dangerous demagogue whose fascist presidency could bring harm to millions of people here at home and abroad, and should he actually win the White House and I had done nothing at all to try to prevent that, I probably would regret it.

(The only thing that I really could do to help prevent a President Trump, given the restrictions on my free time and energy [and given the fact that no, I won’t make phone calls to voters in other states, as I hate receiving political phone calls myself], is to give Billary money; she doesn’t need my vote, since she essentially has won my state already.)

So I’m hoping that Trump doesn’t creep up in fivethirtyeight.com’s presidential probability report, such as to, say, more than 40 percent, because I’ve been happy that I haven’t given Billary a penny, and I don’t want that happiness to end.

*Indeed, the third-party candidates are polling better this presidential election cycle than they have in a long time. Per Real Clear Politics’ averages of recent nationwide polls in a four-way presidential race, the Libertarians’ Gary Johnson right now has 9 percent and the Green’s Jill Stein has 3.3 percent.

Independent presidential candidate Ross Perot won almost 19 percent of the popular vote in the 1992 election. I still maintain that Perot, being right of center, siphoned more votes from incumbent George H. W. Bush than from Bill Clinton, and that thus if it weren’t for Perot, Bill Clinton probably wouldn’t have won the presidency in 1992.

Bill Clinton first won the White House only on a plurality, by the way — he won only 43 percent of the popular vote in the 1992 three-way presidential race.

Billary Clinton isn’t doing even that well in RCP’s averages of recent nationwide polls in a four-way presidential race: She garners only 41.2 percent to Trump’s 39.1 percent (and again, in that four-way race Gary Johnson garners 9 percent and Jill Stein garners 3.3 percent).

Johnson, I surmise, is siphoning more votes from Trump than from Billary — the Libertarians (and Perot was Libertarian-ish) aren’t centrist but are right of center — but, I surmise, not to the point that Ross Perot siphoned votes from George H. W. Bush.

If Billary wins the White House, she most likely won’t do it with even 50.0 percent of the popular vote, and she’ll be weak from Day One.

P.S. In my lifetime of almost five decades, only two presidents won the White House on only a plurality: Richard Nixon in 1968 and Bill Clinton in 1992. Bill Clinton’s re-election in 1996 also was only a plurality (although a stronger one than in 1992), by the way.

P.P.S. Politico lists the “battleground states” as Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.

That list of 11 states mostly coincides with fivethirtyeight.com’s list of “tipping-point” states above.

For the most part, I’d say that if your state appears on either list (most of the states cited appear on both lists), you probably strongly should consider voting for Billary (while holding your nose after having taken an anti-emetic, if necessary) in order to block Trump.

I’m not voting for Billary because my not voting for her won’t help Trump at all. (If you actually believe that the U.S. president is chosen by the popular vote, please educate yourself on the Electoral College.)

And I still maintain that Bernie Sanders was the stronger of the two Democratic candidates to go up against Trump, and that the Democratic Party made a big fucking mistake by making Billary its nominee.

Of course, I don’t blame the primary voters and caucus-goers entirely for that; there was, after all, a lot of corruption within the calcified, obsolete Democratic National Committee to ensure that Billary won the pageant.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Wake me up on November 9

Updated below (on Tuesday, August 9, 2016)

As I have written, once Bernie Sanders no longer was in the race (after the June 7 primaries, in which he lost California and New Jersey [but especially after he lost California]), I’ve had no horse in it — and thus little interest in it.

Although I’m still being bombarded by the ignorant and fear-based claims that all of us must vote for Billary Clinton in order to prevent lesser evil Donald Trump from sitting in the Oval Office, I still plan to vote for Jill Stein on November 8.

I mean, there still is the little thing called the Electoral College, and Billary Clinton is guaranteed all of my state of California’s 55 electoral votes in the winner-takes-all Electoral College (no, we do not pick our president by the popular vote). I’ve covered this fact right out of Civics 101 many times before, but the ignorance-and-fear-based You-must-vote-for-Billary! cacophony continues, so I must repeat myself.

Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein, of course, is coming under harsher attack now that her numbers have gone up (she apparently has inherited a lot of Bernie-or-busters like myself), even though she’ll very most likely never break out of low single digits when the final votes for president are tallied.

(Right now Real Clear Politics gives Stein 4 percent in the average of recent nationwide polls in a four-way race of Trump, Billary, Stein and Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson, and right now RCP gives Billary a 6.5 percent lead over Trump in such a four-way.)

Jill Stein never will be president of the United States of America. I’m confident of that. But I refuse to vote for the supposed lesser of two evils, so I’m voting for Stein, both as a protest vote and because the Green Party much more closely matches my values and beliefs than does the Democratic Party, which under the likes of the center-right, Repugnican Lite Clintons became a pro-corporate, pro-plutocratic, anti-populist party no later than in the 1990s.

The biggest criticism that I’ve most often seen hurled at Stein (mostly by dutiful Billarybots) is that she has sided with the anti-vaccination nut jobs, which is a shocking! stance for a physician! to take, but from what I can tell from the facts, Stein, indeed a graduate of Harvard Medical School, is pro-vaccination but is overly concerned about not offending the anti-vaxxers and so she apparently has parsed her words when discussing vaccination so as not to offend either camp.

I’m firmly in the pro-vaccination camp (vaccinate your fucking kids, especially if they are around the rest of us!), but this isn’t a huge issue for me. It’s not a deal breaker, especially since from what I can discern Stein never actually has been anti-vaccination. (She has been suspect of the mega-corporations that profit from vaccines, which is reasonable and quite understandable; very often the craven profit motive clouds or even destroys the science.)

After Billary Clinton’s apparently inevitable Democratic coronation — already we have forgotten those WikiLeaked anti-Bernie Democratic National Committee e-mails from upon high that were No Big Deal, even though not only DNC head Debbie Wasserman Schultz, but also three other DNC officials, have resigned because of them — I signed up on Billary’s e-mail list to see what her messaging is, and my God (I don’t want to be accused by the DNC weasels of being — gasp! — an atheist!) are Billary’s e-mails to her supporters incredibly dull, uber-pedestrian and utterly uninspiring.

Here is today’s typical Billary fundraising e-mail:

Friend —

This week, we learned that Donald Trump and the Republicans raised more than $82 million in the month of July.

This is the same man who mocked a disabled reporter and has called women “fat pigs.” The same man who took the stage at the Republican National Convention and told the world that his vision is to build a wall between the United States and Mexico, deport millions of immigrants, and repeal the Affordable Care Act, leaving countless Americans without health care.

He’s unqualified and unfit to lead our country but the unfortunate reality we must confront is that he still might be able to win if he spends enough to convince voters otherwise.

This team has what it takes to defeat him I know that. But I need to know you’re with me right now. Will you chip in to get your Team Hillary sticker and make sure that we win in November and build a future for our country that we can be proud of?

This is classic Clintonian triangulation. Rather than tell you anything remotely substantively what Billary actually has done or will do for you, she’ll instead attack Donald Trump, which is like shooting fish in a barrel, a really hard accomplishment.

And, of course, as the Democratic Party has done for many years now, it’s all about the fundraising race, all about money.

And what’s further funny is that there is a big red button right under the e-mail language above that says “Donate $1.” Of course, when you click on “Donate $1,” you then are taken to a fundraising page that starts at $5 and ends at $500. (To be fair, if you truly want to give only that $1 — and I won’t give Billary Clinton one fucking cent — you can click on “Other Amount,” apparently, and donate just that $1, but it’s funny that you’re baited with $1 and then apparently are pressured into giving at least $5. It’s a dick move that The Donald might make, except I see that when you visit his website’s home page, his starting asking price is $10.)

So this is all that Billary has to offer us: lazy, self-evident critiques of Donald Trump and money begs. This is just one notch (maybe two) above the rank fascism that Der Fuhrer Trump is offering the nation.

It’s true that Bernie Sanders has asked his supporters to vote for Billary, such as with a commentary he wrote for The Los Angeles Times a few days ago. It reads, in part:

The conventions are over and the general election has officially begun. In the primaries, I received 1,846 pledged delegates, 46 percent of the total. Hillary Clinton received 2,205 pledged delegates, 54 percent. She received 602 super-delegates. I received 48 super-delegates. Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee and I will vigorously support her. [Wow. What a stirring endorsement! Billary won the math, so go, Billary!]

Donald Trump would be a disaster and an embarrassment for our country if he were elected president. His campaign is not based on anything of substance — improving the economy, our education system, healthcare or the environment. It is based on bigotry. He is attempting to win this election by fomenting hatred against Mexicans and Muslims. He has crudely insulted women. And as a leader of the “birther movement,” he tried to undermine the legitimacy of our first African-American president. That is not just my point of view. That’s the perspective of a number of conservative Republicans.

In these difficult times, we need a president who will bring our nation together, not someone who will divide us by race or religion, not someone who lacks an understanding of what our Constitution is about.

On virtually every major issue facing this country and the needs of working families, Clinton’s positions are far superior to Trump’s. Our campaigns worked together to produce the most progressive platform in the history of American politics. Trump’s campaign wrote one of the most reactionary documents.

Clinton understands that Citizens United has undermined our democracy. She will nominate justices who are prepared to overturn that Supreme Court decision, which made it possible for billionaires to buy elections. Her court appointees also would protect a woman’s right to choose, workers’ rights, the rights of the LGBT community, the needs of minorities and immigrants and the government’s ability to protect the environment.

Trump, on the other hand, has made it clear that his Supreme Court appointees would preserve the court’s right-wing majority. …

Don’t get me wrong; of course Donald Trump would be a worse president than would Billary. That is saying exactly almost zero. But both Billary and Trump are self-serving, corrupt baby boomers (I know, redundant), and neither is acceptable for the presidency. It’s just that one is worse than the other.

Billary pays lip service to women and their rights, to non-whites, to the LGBT “community,” to immigrants, to Muslims, et. al. — indeed, having jettisoned actual populism (that is, actual concern for the socioeconomic well-being of the American commoner) many years ago, the Democratic Party has become reduced pretty much only to identity politics — but what Billary and Trump both have in common is their fealty to our plutocratic overlords and to the socioeconomic status quo that benefits our plutocratic overlords at our commoners’ continued expense.

(Billionaires for Billary, by the way, include Michael Bloomberg, Mark Cuban, Sheryl Sandberg, Warren Buffet, and, of course, George Soros, and perhaps Jeff Bezos.)

Billary’s rhetoric is nicer than Trump’s, but under President Billary you’d find that your lot in life has improved no more than it did under eight years of President Hopey-Changey, and that’s because it’s all a fucking ruse. The Repugnican Party and the Democratic Party for decades now have just played good cop/bad cop, and their common enemy is we commoners. We’re fucked either way, by the bad cop or by the “good” cop, but usually by both working in tandem, as the Coke Party and the Pepsi Party do against us commoners.

The Coke Party and the Pepsi Party will continue their good cop/bad cop campaign against the American populace as long as they still are able to.

Participating in their bullshit will only perpetuate their bullshit, and so while I understand that politically Bernie Sanders more or less has had to quasi-endorse Billary (I mean, I understand that he intends to remain in the U.S. Senate for a while and would prefer not to be a total pariah there), yes, I’m disappointed that he has joined the chorus singing hymns in defense of the supposed lesser of two evils.

Not to sound too much like Ted Cruz (who is the second coming of Joseph McCarthy), but I still entreaty you to vote your conscience on November 8. (And it’s interesting that the advice to actually vote your conscience sends the Democratic Party hacks into an apoplectic fit as much as it sends the Repugnican Tea Party hacks into an apoplectic fit.)

As I wrote in June: If (like I do) you live in a solidly blue or a solidly red state and it’s already clear that Billary or Trump will win your state and thus all of its electoral votes, and you vote for Billary even though you don’t really want to, hell has a special spot waiting for you.

Because the supposed-lesser-of-two-evils-ism bullshit has to stop, I’m hoping that the polling for Jill Stein and for Gary Johnson (the latter of whom, per RCP, right now has the support of 8.4 percent of poll respondents) not only holds but increases, as the partisan duopoly of the Repugnican Party and the Democratic Party should have been broken up years ago.

And it’s funny that although Johnson right now is drawing about twice the support that Stein is drawing, and surely is siphoning at least some of the support that otherwise would go to Billary, Johnson to my knowledge hasn’t come under any serious attack for exercising his constitutional right to run for president, but Stein has; indeed, the Democrats (or at least the Billarybots, who aren’t actual Democrats but who are DINOs) hate actual democracy.

Which is just one more reason why I won’t vote for Billary on November 8, but instead will vote for Jill Stein.

Update (Tuesday, August 9, 2016): The Billary Clinton campaign e-mail creepiness continues. Yesterday I received an e-mail that reads:

Friend —

We noticed you recently started to make a donation on HillaryClinton.com, but didn’t complete the transaction.

You can complete your donation here. [I have disabled the links in this e-mail.]

Your Supporter Record
Donor Level: Online Supporter
Most Recent Contribution Date: today?!
Total Contributed: $0.00
Suggested Contribution: $1.00

Please complete your donation and join more than 2 million grassroots donors powering this campaign:

Complete my donation

Thanks,

HFA Donations

As I blogged, I never intended to donate even one cent, but just wanted to see what would happen after I hit the “Donate $1” button, and, as I’d suspected would be the case, the starting asking donation was not $1, but was more. But because I didn’t give any money, I got a follow-up e-mail. Cheesy.

And today I received another Billary campaign e-mail that begins like this:

Friend —

You did it! By signing up to volunteer, you just took the first step to help bring home a win for Hillary. I know the team in California is going to be pumped to have you on board. …

Except that I never “[signed] up to volunteer” for the Billary campaign. I only signed up to receive the campaign’s e-mails in order to see its messaging and its tactics.

Another e-mail that I received from the Billary campaign today reads, in full (link disabled):

Friend —

Donald Trump said this at a rally in North Carolina today:

“If she gets to pick her judges, [there’s] nothing you can do folks. Although, the Second Amendment people, maybe there is. I don’t know.”

This is not normal or acceptable talk from a presidential candidate.

But when decent people stay silent at moments like this, we let it become normal. We all need to stand up right now and show that we don’t tolerate this kind of politics in America — before future candidates get the impression that they would benefit from running this kind of campaign.

Say you oppose Donald Trump and the politics he stands for — chip in $1 right now, get your free official Team Hillary sticker, and let’s stop him:

Thanks,

Christina

Christina Reynolds
Deputy Communications Director
Hillary for America

Tell me if I’m missing something here: The e-mail states that, a la “tea party” whackadoodle Sharron Angle circa 2010, Donald Trump publicly has suggested, to paraphrase Angle, that Second-Amendment remedies might be necessary in dealing with Billary Clinton. The New York Times apparently shares my interpretation, as it reported today:

Wilmington, N.C. — Donald J. Trump [today] appeared to raise the possibility that gun rights supporters could take matters into their own hands if Hillary Clinton is elected president and appoints judges who favor stricter gun control measures to the bench.

At a rally here, Mr. Trump warned that it would be “a horrible day” if Mrs. Clinton were elected and got to appoint a tie-breaking Supreme Court justice.

“If she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks,” Mr. Trump said, as the crowd began to boo. He quickly added: “Although the Second Amendment people — maybe there is, I don’t know.”

The Trump campaign released a statement insisting opaquely that Mr. Trump had been referring to the “power of unification.”

“Second Amendment people have amazing spirit and are tremendously unified, which gives them great political power,” said Mr. Trump’s spokesman, Jason Miller. “And this year, they will be voting in record numbers, and it won’t be for Hillary Clinton, it will be for Donald Trump.”

… Reacting to Mr. Trump’s statement on Twitter, aides to Mrs. Clinton expressed immediate horror, suggesting that even by Mr. Trump’s standards, the comments were jarring.

“This is simple,” Mrs. Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, said in an e-mail. “What Trump is saying is dangerous. A person seeking to be the president of the United States should not suggest violence in any way.”

Even those in Mr. Trump’s audience appeared caught by surprise. Video of the rally showed a man seated just over Mr. Trump’s shoulder go slack-jawed and turn to his companion, apparently in disbelief, when Mr. Trump made the remark. …

Yes, it was a serious remark. It was bad enough when crazy cat lady Sharron Angle, running for the U.S. Senate, spoke of “Second-Amendment remedies” (she refused to say exactly what those “remedies” would be, so of course she was talking about the use of gun violence to achieve one’s political goals — which is the dictionary definition of terrorism) but here we have the Repugnican Tea Party’s presidential nominee doing that.

The gravity of fascist Trump’s fascist comment, however, certainly is undercut by blithely and cynically following it with “chip in $1 right now” and “get your free official Team Hillary sticker,” don’t you think?

Our idiocracy — replete with “Second Amendment people” (when cognition goes, so does language, as the two inextricably are bound together) and those who casually cynically try to raise campaign cash from the public utterance of disturbingly fascist statements — is fully in place now, and I sorely miss Bernie Sanders’ campaign e-mails.

P.S. Yes, the “Donate $1” button still takes you to a webpage whose asking starting donation is $5

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

To win election and save party, super-delegates should pick Bernie Sanders*

*But they won’t, so they’re going to lose the November election, and the party as it exists today is doomed.

Associated Press photo

Recently leaked e-mails prove that among other things, the Billarybots within the Democratic National Committee cynically discussed emphasizing Bernie Sanders’ religious beliefs or lack thereof in order to harm his campaign and to help Billary Clinton’s, and “neutral” DNC head Debbie Wasserman Schultz flat-out wrote about Bernie Sanders in an e-mail, “He isn’t going to be president.” If Democrat in name only Billary Clinton still actually emerges as the party’s presidential nominee this week, know that she did not do so cleanly, fairly and squarely, but that she did it dirtily and corruptly — and that we now have thousands of pages of physical evidence of this fact. (Above, thousands of supporters of Bernie Sanders protest in Philadelphia today, ahead of this week’s coming Democratic National Convention. I fully share their sentiment about the Democratic National Committee.)

The Democratic Party hacks thought that after the train wreck on steroids that was the Repugnican National Convention of last week, their convention this coming week would be, by comparison, flawless.

They were wrong.

A recent WikiLeaks dump of thousands of hacked Democratic National Committee e-mails shows that top officials and staffers within the DNC, as we knew all along, did their best to help Billary Clinton and to stymie Bernie Sanders.

The wronged Sanders, rightfully, has been quick to jump on this. Reports Yahoo! News today:

Bernie Sanders said [today] that the leak of Democratic National Committee e-mails that show its staffers plotting against him proves Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz should resign.

Shortly after the interview aired, CNN reported that Wasserman Schultz will no longer serve as chair of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, which begins [tomorrow]. According to CNN, she’ll be replaced at the convention by Ohio Rep. Marcia Fudge.

On CNN’s “State of the Union,” Sanders said the e-mail leak proved once and for all that Wasserman Schultz was unfit to lead the committee.

“I don’t think she is qualified to be the chair of the DNC,” the Vermont senator said on CNN’s “State of the Union” [today]. “Not only for these awful e-mails — which revealed the prejudice of the DNC — but also because we need a party that reaches out to working people and young people, and I don’t think her leadership style is doing that.”

“I think she should resign, period,” Sanders said on ABC’s “This Week With George Stephanopoulos” [today].

“I think I told you a long time ago that the DNC was not running a fair operation, that they were supporting Secretary Clinton,” he continued. “So what I suggested to be true six months ago turns out, in fact, to be true. I’m not shocked. But I am disappointed. And that is the way it is.” …

Yes, it goes without saying that Debbie Wasserman Schultz needs to put her slimy tail between her slimy legs and slither away under a rock somewhere already. (In one e-mail, the “neutral” Wasserman Schultz wrote of Bernie: “He isn’t going to be president.”)

But it’s much larger than that one lying, corrupt slimebag. Wasserman Schultz’s slimy head on a silver fucking platter is a great thing, but in and of itself it does nothing to reverse the pervasive corruption within the Billary-controlled Democratic Party, which stopped being a populist, progressive party and instead became a Clintonesque center-right, corporate party decades ago.

If you want to kill the Clinton Beast, you don’t just chop off one of its innumerable slimy tentacles; you have to drive a huge motherfucking stake through its cold, cold, slimy heart.

If the Democratic Party super-delegates were people of integrity instead of worthless party hacks, this coming week at the convention they would throw this thing to Bernie Sanders.

I mean that.

Hell, fuck even integrity; the question becomes whether or not the super-delegates want to nominate the candidate who has the best chance of winning the White House in November, which is supposed to be the No. 1 function of the convention. If the super-delegates have no conscience — and most of them don’t — then the least that they could do is their main job of picking the most likely winner. 

The fact that the widely despised Billary Clinton (56 percent unfavorable rating and only 40 percent favorable rating nationwide) continues to drop in the polls against Donald Trump (Real Clear Politics’ average of recent nationwide polls has her at only 1.9 percent ahead of Trump in a two-way race and only 2.9 percent ahead of Trump in a four-way race), coupled with the physical evidence that of course the DNC did not remain neutral but anti-democratically did its best to handicap Bernie and to boost Billary, gives the super-delegates (who may vote however they please) not only cause, but compelling reason to vote for Bernie Sanders (whose nationwide favorability rating is at 53 percent).

Don’t get me wrong; I don’t expect this to happen. Above I wrote “If the Democratic Party super-delegates were people of integrity instead of worthless party hacks…”

Of the DNC e-mail dump, perhaps this e-mail exchange (which, per ABC News, occurred in early May) has pissed me off the most. Reports The New York Times:

… “It might may [sic] no difference, but for KY and WVA can we get someone to ask his [Bernie Sanders’] belief[?] Does he believe in a God[?]” wrote [the apparently fairly illiterate] Brad Marshall, the chief financial officer of the committee. “He had skated on saying he has a Jewish heritage. I think I read he is an atheist. This could make several points[‘] difference with my peeps.” [Politico reports that Marshall immediately went on in his e-mail: “My Southern Baptist peeps would draw a big difference between a Jew and an atheist.” Why The New York Times didn’t report that lovely sentence and sentiment I’m not certain.]

Marshall added in a second e-mail: “It’s these [sic] Jesus thing.” [Amy Dacey, the DNC’s chief executive officer] wrote back, in capital letters: “AMEN.”

Marshall did not respond on Friday to an e-mail asking for comment. But The Intercept, a news website, quoted Marshall as saying: “I do not recall this. I can say it would not have been Sanders. It would probably be about a surrogate.” …

Give me a fucking break. This Brad Marshall prick was not talking about Bernie Sanders? OK, so if he was talking about a Sanders surrogate (but he was not; he is a corrupt, fucking liar who, like Wasserman Schultz and many others within the DNC, needs to resign or to be removed), then he needs to tell us, right now, exactly which Sanders surrogate he was writing about.

For the record, as I have indicated before, it is my impression of Bernie Sanders that although he is ethnically Jewish, he is agnostic to atheist (or, at least, secular). No truly intelligent person is not somewhere on the agnostic-to-atheist spectrum, and the only constitutionally and democratically sound way to govern is to do so secularly, not theocratically.

And, as I’ve written before, we in the United States of America have freedom of religion and freedom from religion, and there is not supposed to be a religious test put on the presidency.

And many if not even most of the millions of people who voted for Bernie in the Democratic Party primary elections and caucuses (including yours truly) are somewhere on the agnostic-to-atheist spectrum, so very apparently Bernie Sanders’ religious beliefs, if any, have not posed a problem for them/us.

But to bring up “[the] Jesus thing” when talking about an at-least-ethnically Jewish person — that’s so classy and so not anti-Semitic or anything, and look at how shamelessly cynically the Billarybots within the DNC were willing, ready and able to exploit religion — the “Jesus thing” — for their own political gain (and for Billary’s, of course).

And, of course, with e-mails plotting to exploit Bernie Sanders’ not being a Jeebus-lovin’ Christian, you would think that these were members of the Repugnican National Committee plotting against Bernie, not members of the Democratic National Committee. With “friends” like these, who the fuck needs enemies?

Nothing is sacred to the slimy weasels that have overtaken the Democratic National Committee. Probably mostly agnostics to atheists themselves, they’ll nonetheless gladly exploit the “Jesus thing” to try to help Billary (who probably actually is agnostic to atheist herself) and harm Bernie.

It’s long past due to clean house from top to bottom, every square fucking inch of it, and, again, merely chopping off the one slimy tentacle that is Debbie Wasserman Schultz won’t cut it.

In the wake of the rather copious physical evidence that the Democratic National Committee did everything in its power to help Billary and to harm Bernie, I already have switched my voter registration from the Democratic Party to the Green Party.

I encourage you to leave the Democratic Party, too, if you are registered with it. (I had registered with the Democratic Party only to be able to vote for Bernie in California’s presidential primary on June 7.)

The Democratic Party as it exists today does not deserve the support of those of us who are left of center, and until and unless we deprive it of our support, it will continue to accept our money and our votes while only betraying us time and time and time and time and time again.

If Bernie Sanders now wants to, say, run with the Green Party’s Jill Stein, as she has offered him, I am perfectly fine with that.

I rather doubt that he will, but given the fact that the Democratic National Committee did not run anything remotely resembling a fair presidential contest, but, in fact, quite actively fucked over Bernie Sanders — and, by extension, his millions of supporters (including yours truly) — it is well within Bernie’s moral rights to do whatever the hell he wants to do now.

Bernie, after all, didn’t, so to speak, void any contractual agreement by acting in bad faith; the DNC did that, and it did it big-time.

P.S. Here is the link on WikiLeaks to prick Brad Marshall’s e-mail plotting attacks on Bernie Sanders’ religious beliefs (or lack thereof):

https://wikileaks.org/dnc-emails/emailid/7643

The e-mail is professionally titled “No shit.”

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Cornel West, fresh from Democratic platform committee, endorses Jill Stein

Cornel West, who is supporting Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont in his presidential run, at a fish fry on Saturday in Charleston, S.C., organized by Representative James E. Clyburn.

New York Times photo

Cornel West, whom Wikipedia describes as “an American philosopher, academic, social activist, author, public intellectual and prominent member of the Democratic Socialists of America,” recently finished his stint as one of the 15 members of the 2016 Democratic Party platform-drafting committee (he was one of Bernie Sanders’ only-five picks to the committee) — only to endorse Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein. West, shown above campaigning for Bernie in Charleston, South Carolina, in January, correctly calls Stein “the only progressive woman in the race” for the White House.

Here is Cornel West’s piece for The Guardian, in full (the links are the original links, not mine):

A long and deep legacy of white supremacy has always arrested the development of U.S. democracy. We either hit it head on, or it comes back to haunt us. That’s why a few of us have pressed the president for seven years not to ignore issues of poverty, police abuse and mass unemployment. Barack Obama said it very well, following the shootings of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling, that some communities “have been forgotten by all of us.”

And now – in Dallas, Baton Rouge, Falcon Heights and beyond – this legacy has comes back to haunt the whole country.

Obama and his cheerleaders should take responsibility for being so reluctant to engage with these issues. It’s not a question of interest group or constituencies. Unfortunately for so much of the Obama administration it’s been a question of “I’m not the president of black people, I’m the president of everyone.” But this is a question of justice. It’s about being concerned about racism and police brutality.

I have deep empathy for brothers and sisters who are shot in the police force. I also have profound empathy for people of color who are shot by the police. I have always believed deliberate killing to be a crime against humanity.

Yet, Obama didn’t go to Baton Rouge. He didn’t go to Minneapolis. He flew over their heads to go to Dallas. You can’t do that. His fundamental concern was to speak to the police; that was his priority. When he references the Black Lives Matter movement, it’s to speak to the police. But the people who are struggling have a different perspective.

The very notion that Dallas is the paragon of policing is something that needs to be interrogated. The Dallas mayor said we have done nothing wrong, but look at your history. Ask people in southern Dallas about the police. Ask Clinton Allen, an unarmed black man fatally shot by the Dallas police in 2013. I was with his mother, Collette Flanagan, the founder of Mothers Against Police Brutality, last year. Countless people came up and told us about all the struggles black communities are having with the Dallas police.

Unfortunately, Obama thrives on being in the middle. He has no backbone to fight for justice. He likes to be above the fray. But for those us us who are in the fray, there is a different sensibility. You have to choose which side you’re on, and he doesn’t want to do that. Fundamentally, he’s not a love warrior. He’s a polished professional. Martin Luther King Jr., Adam Clayton Powell Jr. and Ella Baker – they were warriors.

Obama’s attitude is that of a neo-liberal, and they rarely have solidarity with poor and working people. Whatever solidarity he does offer is just lip service to suffering, but he never makes it a priority to end that suffering.

Obama has power right now to enact the recommendations made after Ferguson: better training, independent civilian oversight boards, body cameras. But he has not used executive orders to push any of these changes through.

This November, we need change. Yet we are tied in a choice between [Donald] Trump, who would be a neo-fascist catastrophe, and [Hillary] Clinton, a neo-liberal disaster. That’s why I am supporting Jill Stein. I am with her – the only progressive woman in the race – because we’ve got to get beyond this lock-jaw situation. I have a deep love for my brother Bernie Sanders, but I disagree with him on Hillary Clinton. I don’t think she would be an “outstanding president.” Her militarism makes the world a less safe place.

Clinton policies of the 1990s generated inequality, mass incarceration, privatization of schools and Wall Street domination. There is also a sense that the Clinton policies helped produce the right-wing populism that we’re seeing now in the country. And we think she’s going to come to the rescue? That’s not going to happen.

The American empire is in deep spiritual decline and cultural decay. The levels of wealth inequality and environmental degradation is grotesque. The correct response to this is: tell the truth about what is going on. Bear witness. Be willing to go to jail to fight for justice if need be.

When the system is declining, it can bring despair. That’s why Black Lives Matter – and all other young people of all colors who are mobilizing – is a beautiful thing. We are having a moral and spiritual awakening. It gives us democratic hope. Its not about having hope but being hope. It’s time to move from being spectators, to being actors.

Among his many other points, I share West’s contention that Barack Obama hasn’t done enough for black Americans, irrespective of Obama’s race.

In fact, I’ve long speculated that Obama has done even less for black Americans than would a president of another race even with a similar political ideology — out of Obama’s fear of being accused of doing too much for black Americans because he is a black American himself.

And yes, of course all lives matter and of course Obama is supposed to be every American’s president, but these assertions often if not usually are made to whitewash the fact that black Americans still struggle mightily — by most socioeconomic measures more than any other racial group — in a largely racist, white supremacist nation.

As I’ve noted, I don’t hold it against Bernie that he endorsed Billary. Because he ran as a Democrat, he pretty much had to. But he didn’t have to do so wholeheartedly, and he didn’t do so wholeheartedly. In my view, he did it with a major wink-wink.

And, of course, we Berners are free to vote for whom we wish, and like Brother Cornel (who, again, helped to write the Democratic Party platform, for fuck’s sake), I intend to vote for Jill Stein, who is not only the only progressive woman in the presidential race, but is the only progressive, period, who still is in the race.

7 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

No, Billary Clinton does NOT have the support of 85 percent of us Berners

2016 Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein.

The actual number of those of us who voted for Bernie Sanders who plan to vote for Billary Clinton in November is probably around 60 percent. Indeed, a CNN poll taken last month showed that only 57 percent of us Berners would support Billary in November, while 18 percent of us would support Green Party candidate Jill Stein (pictured above), 13 percent would support Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson, and 8 percent would support Donald Trump. The widely quoted Pew poll that showed that 85 percent of Berners would support Billary did not give the respondents the explicit choices of Stein or Johnson, wildly skewing its results.

How many of those who voted for Bernie Sanders in a primary election or caucus plan to vote for Billary Clinton in November?

The poll numbers have varied widely.

A Bloomberg poll taken a month ago found that only 55 percent of Berners would vote for Billary, while 22 percent would vote for Donald Trump and 18 percent would vote for Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson. Very apparently and very revealingly, Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein, the natural candidate for Berners who can’t bring themselves to support Billary, wasn’t even among the Bloomberg poll respondents’ choices.

The Bloomberg poll is, methinks, bullshit, and, by omitting Stein, among other things, quite intentionally skews to the right; no, I don’t see a bit more than a full fifth of Berners actually voting for Donald Trump (I don’t see any Berner voting for Trump, really, unless it’s a Fuck-it!-Bring-on-Armageddon-already! vote).

And the Libertarians are mostly wingnuts, and certainly aren’t diverse, but are mostly white dudes; the Libertarians aren’t a natural fit for Berners, either (although I’m sure that the misandrists who use the defamatory [but thankfully-also-self-defeating] term “Bernie bro”* disagree).

Further, a pillar of the Libertarian Party is “the abolition of the welfare state,” whereas a pillar — actually, the pillar — of Bernie Sanders’ campaign was the strengthening of the welfare state.

Wikipedia defines the “welfare state” as “a concept of government in which the state plays a key role in the protection and promotion of the social and economic well-being of its citizens. It is based on the principles of equality of opportunity, equitable distribution of wealth, and public responsibility for those unable to avail themselves of the minimal provisions for a good life.”

I am a staunch proponent of the welfare state — no, not as defined by the wingnuts (whose definition is something like this: a bunch of lazy people mooching off of the gubmint and our tax dollars), but as defined in the paragraph above.

So no, this Berner isn’t going to vote for Trumpence or for Gary Johnson, but most likely will vote for Jill Stein, in large if not most part because she supports the welfare state as defined above. Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein subscribes to my belief that the federal government should exist primarily to improve the life of every common American — not to further enrich and to further empower the already rich and the already powerful, which is what the right-wing Repugnicans and the right-wing Libertarians very apparently believe is the main role of the federal government.**

Another, much-more-bandied-about-because-it’s-good-for-Billary poll is a Pew poll taken earlier this month that found that a rather whopping 85 percent of Berners will vote for Billary and that 9 percent plan to vote for Trump in November.

But, tellingly, Stein and even Johnson weren’t explicitly listed as possible responses in the widely quoted Pew poll, demonstrating amply that exactly how a poll question is worded already loads the dice.

Indeed, The Atlantic noted late last month:

… A CNN poll released Tuesday [June 21] shows that 74 percent of Sanders supporters would vote for Clinton in a choice between her and Trump in the general election.

Yet support for Clinton dropped when other options besides Trump were included in the poll. 

When asked to choose between Clinton, Trump, the Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson, and the Green Party candidate Jill Stein, only 57 percent of Sanders supporters said they would back Clinton. Eight percent said they would vote for Trump; 13 percent picked Johnson; and 18 percent went for Stein. … [Emphasis mine.]

Call me a conspiracy theorist, but the corporately owned and controlled mainstream media, a la George Orwell’s 1984, want us proles to support only corporately owned and controlled presidential candidates, so when they poll us proles, they won’t even ask us about third-party or independent presidential candidates.

The CNN poll’s results — with all four candidates included — are, I think, the closest to the truth.

Yes, give Berners a choice in your little poll of only Billary or Trump, and anywhere from around 75 percent to 85 percent of them might pick Billary, but give them the choices that they’ll actually have on their November ballots, and the result is quite different.

My best guesstimate as to the percentage of Berners who truly plan to vote for Billary Clinton in November as I type this sentence is around 60 percent (in line with CNN’s finding), maybe as high as around 65 percent, but certainly not as high as 85 percent.

Note that when CNN included in its poll of Berners the choices of Billary, Trump, Stein and Johnson, Stein garnered the largest amount of support outside of Billary, with 18 percent. Again, Stein is the most natural inheritor of the support of Berners (like yours truly) who can’t bring themselves to vote for the center-right Billary in November.

It’s quite possible, of course, that that percentage of Berners who plan to take an anti-emetic, hold their noses and actually vote for Billary will creep up over the coming months as the full horror of a Trumpence White House becomes clearer and clearer. A lot can happen between now and Election Day.

In the end, Billary might actually capture in November something like 85 percent of those who voted for Bernie. But I don’t believe that she has that level of support today.

And given how close polls have her with Trump, she will need it.

Real Clear Politics’ average of recent polls right now puts Billary at only 4.5 percent ahead of Trump nationally in a four-way race and only 3.2 percent ahead of Trump nationally in a two-way race. The Huffington Post’s average of recent polls right now similarly puts Billary at only 3.5 percent ahead of Trump nationally in a two-way race.

I’m sure that it’s comforting to the Billarybots to believe that 85 percent of us Berners already are in the bag for Billary, but the polls indicate that the Billarybots easily could be in for a big November surprise.

*Glenn Greenwald has written of the term “Bernie bro”:

The concoction of the “Bernie Bro” narrative by pro-[Billary] Clinton journalists has been a potent political tactic — and a journalistic disgrace.

It’s intended to imply two equally false claims: (1) a refusal to march enthusiastically behind the Wall Street-enriched, multiple-war-advocating, despot-embracing Hillary Clinton is explainable not by ideology or political conviction, but largely if not exclusively by sexism: demonstrated by the fact that men, not women, support Sanders (his supporters are “bros”); and (2) Sanders supporters are uniquely abusive and misogynistic in their online behavior.

Needless to say, a crucial tactical prong of this innuendo is that any attempt to refute it is itself proof of insensitivity to sexism if not sexism itself (as the accusatory reactions to this article will instantly illustrate). …

My best guess is that the Billarybots’ invention of the term “Bernie bro” at least in part was meant to shame the “Bernie bros” into supporting Billary (lest they be called sexist and misogynist), but methinks that this tactic for the most part has had the opposite effect.

I mean, I, for one, never was going to support Repugnican Lite, DINO Billary Clinton anyway, but then to be called sexist and misogynist for refusing to support the self-serving, center-right, sellout Billary (whom I’m “supposed” to support only because she is [as far as we know] a biological female and because she calls herself a Democrat) — that only reinforced my repudiation of Billary and her ironically sexist and misandrist bots.

**To be more precise, the Repugnicans want the federal government to actively aid and abet the rich and powerful in their continued war on us commoners. This is, to the Repugnicans, the only real legitimate use of the federal government: to continue their class warfare, using our commoners’ own tax dollars in their war upon us.

The Libertarians, on the other hand, want a dog-eat-dog nation in which the federal government (which has been shrunk as much as possible if not eliminated altogether) just sits back (if it still even exists at all) and lets the canine cannibalism happen.

In either case, the rich and powerful right-wing white men continue to run the show and those who historically have suffered the most in the nation continue to suffer the most.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized