Tag Archives: progressives

2020 is going to look a lot like 2016

Senator Elizabeth Warren introduced Bernie Sanders in Boston.

Boston Globe photo

Progressives U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders and U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren appeared together in Boston last week, as pictured above. Far from having gone away quietly, Sanders is fighting for such progressive goals as single-payer health care and free tuition at public colleges and universities. Unfortunately, there’s no reason to think that the 2020 presidential election won’t devolve into another fight between real Democrats (that is, actual progressives) and corporate, sellout Democrats who think that craven identity politics is a political cover for the establishmentarian, pro-corporate, anti-populist, ultimately treasonous Democratic Party to continue to ignore income inequality and to continue to support the socioeconomic status quo.

Bernie Sanders is, I think, going to run for the presidency again in 2020.

He hasn’t ruled it out, and he has remained in the public eye since the preventably disastrous November 2016 presidential election.

He put a book out in November (and his progressive comrade Elizabeth Warren has another book due out later this month), and while the establishment Democrats’ “plan” remains to just sit back and watch the Repugnican Tea Party, under the “leadership” of “President” Pussygrabber, implode (or explode, I suppose), Bernie is out there advocating for a progressive agenda that would improve millions of lives (as is Elizabeth).

Bernie will introduce legislation for single-payer health care, totally bypassing the bogus argument of corporate-friendly Obamacare vs. corporate-friendly Trumpcare (and necessarily so), and he and Warren have introduced legislation for free in-state community college and public four-year college tuition.

Oh, that shit can’t pass, I hear even so-called Democrats mutter.

Um, leadership is about leading — not following. Leadership is about convincing people to go in a new, better direction. Leadership isn’t about watching and waiting for your inept political opponents to hang themselves, and then to continue to stick with the status quo. Nor is leadership about jumping on board something that is progressive only after it’s clearly politically safe to do so, since the majority of the electorate already has gone in that direction (Billary Clinton, for instance, didn’t jump on board the same-sex-marriage bandwagon until after it was safe to do so, after the majority of Americans had already gotten there first [to be fair, ditto for Barack Obama]).

Actual leadership is selfless, it’s hard, and it can be risky — which is why the worthless, sellout, do-nothing establishment “Democrats” don’t lead, but follow.

Unfortunately, Bernie 2020 probably would run into what Bernie 2016 ran into: anti-white racism.*

Yup. I said it.

Bernie was rejected by many, many so-called Democrats primarily if not solely because of his demographics — they wrote him off as just another old white man. He was, yes, racially profiled.

How else to explain that Billary Clinton won the support of 76 percent of black Democratic primary voters and caucus-goers, while Bernie won the support of only 23 percent of them?

Bernie was less well known than Billary, that’s why, you might argue, but then there is this contrasting (and inconvenient) fact: among white Democratic primary voters and caucus-goers, it was much more evenly split — 48.9 percent supported Billary, while 49.1 percent supported Bernie, a difference of only 0.2 percent.

Clearly, there was something racial going on.

And it’s interesting that black Americans supported Billary Clinton to the degree that they did; the Clintons brought us “welfare reform,” a crime bill that filled our prisons disproportionately with non-whites, the job-killing NAFTA, etc.

Maybe blacks still struggle at least in part because they tend to vote against their own best interests. Just sayin’. (And I’m not picking on blacks — many, many Americans routinely vote against their own best interests, such as the poor and working-class white people who voted for Pussygrabber for president.)

Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, wrote this of Billary Clinton in February 2016:

Hillary Clinton loves black people. And black people love Hillary — or so it seems. Black politicians have lined up in droves to endorse her, eager to prove their loyalty to the Clintons in the hopes that their faithfulness will be remembered and rewarded.

Black pastors are opening their church doors, and the Clintons are making themselves comfortably at home once again, engaging effortlessly in all the usual rituals associated with “courting the black vote,” a pursuit that typically begins and ends with Democratic politicians making black people feel liked and taken seriously.

Doingsomething concrete to improve the conditions under which most black people live is generally not required.

Hillary is looking to gain momentum on the campaign trail as the primaries move out of Iowa and New Hampshire and into states like South Carolina, where large pockets of black voters can be found. According to some polls, she leads Bernie Sanders by as much as 60 percent among African Americans. It seems that we — black people — are her winning card, one that Hillary is eager to play.

And it seems we’re eager to get played. Again.

The love affair between black folks and the Clintons has been going on for a long time. It began back in 1992, when Bill Clinton was running for president. He threw on some shades and played the saxophone on The Arsenio Hall Show.

It seems silly in retrospect, but many of us fell for that. At a time when a popular slogan was “It’s a black thing, you wouldn’t understand,” Bill Clinton seemed to get us. When Toni Morrison dubbed him our first black president, we nodded our heads. We had our boy in the White House. Or at least we thought we did.

Black voters have been remarkably loyal to the Clintons for more than 25 years. It’s true that we eventually lined up behind Barack Obama in 2008, but it’s a measure of the Clinton allure that Hillary led Obama among black voters until he started winning caucuses and primaries.

Now Hillary is running again. This time she’s facing a democratic socialist who promises a political revolution that will bring universal healthcare, a living wage, an end to rampant Wall Street greed, and the dismantling of the vast prison state — many of the same goals that Martin Luther King Jr. championed at the end of his life.

Even so, black folks are sticking with the Clinton brand.

What have the Clintons done to earn such devotion? Did they take extreme political risks to defend the rights of African Americans? Did they courageously stand up to right-wing demagoguery about black communities? Did they help usher in a new era of hope and prosperity for neighborhoods devastated by deindustrialization, globalization, and the disappearance of work?

No. Quite the opposite. …

Read Alexander’s article, and fuck, just Google “What did the Clintons do for black Americans?” (While you’re at it, Google “What did Obama do for black Americans?”)

Clearly, black Americans had no logical reason to vote for Billary over Bernie, certainly not at the rate of 76 percent to 23 percent.

Still, myths die hard. Blacks understood that they were “supposed” to vote for Billary, and so they did.

And the race-based Bernie bashing continues. There were those black-supremacist idiots who called a crowd gathered for Bernie Sanders “white supremacist liberals” while they shut down Bernie’s planned speech in Seattle in August 2015. They had no coherent anti-Bernie argument; indeed, I’m sure that they were mostly if not wholly unaware of his record (including the NAACP’s having given him a score of 100 percent on their agenda [and former NAACP head Ben Jealous went on to endorse Bernie]). Bernie’s record didn’t matter to these black supremacists, you see, because Bernie’s sin was that of having been born while white.

Similarly, in a recent piece for Salon.com, Chauncey DeVega takes two sentences from recent remarks by Bernie (at the rally in Boston pictured above) and then runs with it.

Bernie said, as DeVega reported: “Some people think that the people who voted for Trump are racists and sexists and homophobes and deplorable folks. I don’t agree, because I’ve been there.” (“Been there” as in he has met and spoken with these people, I presume he meant.)

Bernie immediately followed that up with, “Let me tell you something else some of you might not agree with: It wasn’t that Donald Trump won the election, it was that the Democratic Party lost the election.”

That apparently wasn’t convenient to DeVega’s argument, though, so he left it out of his article, which he had begun with:

In the United States, white liberals and progressives have historically shown a serious inability to grapple with the realities of the color line and the enduring power of white supremacy. Many of them are either unable or unwilling to understand that fighting against class inequality does not necessarily remedy the specific harms done to African-Americans and other people of color by white racism.

That’s just a more academic, “nicer” way of calling Bernie Sanders and his supporters “white supremacist liberals,” methinks.

Bernie also had said: “We need a Democratic Party that is not a party of the liberal elite but of the working class of this country; we need a party that is a grassroots party, where candidates are talking to working people, not spending their time raising money for the wealthy and the powerful.”

DeVega didn’t quote that, either. Better to simply paint Bernie as a denier of racism, because it appears that the same black Americans who stupidly supported corporate whore Billary Clinton primarily out of black identity than even for their own best fucking interests are going to try to shove corporate whore U.S. Sen. Cory Booker down our throats as the 2020 Democratic Party presidential candidate.

Booker is black, you see, and for years he cravenly has promoted himself as the next Barack Obama, and it’s supposed to be enough that he’s black.

Booker, whose most recent big act was to vote in the U.S. Senate to deny Americans access to cheaper pharmaceuticals because he takes a lot of money from Big Pharma — I don’t call someone a “corporate whore” for nothing — very much appears to me to be the next one to take the mantle of being Best for Blacks (this mantle was passed from Bill Clinton to Barack Obama to Billary Clinton and, I surmise, now goes to Booker; the mantle keeps getting passed, even though no one who wears it actually does anything significant for black Americans).

If I’m “racist” for being a while male who has called Corey Booker a corporate whore, know that the managing editor of the Black Agenda Report, a Bruce A. Dixon, earlier this year called Booker a “corporate hooker” and a “corporate whore.” He wrote (the links are his):

After losing the White House to the most unpopular president in history, Democrats have lots to say, but even more to avoid saying, lest they expose themselves as every bit as much corporate tools as their Republican foes.

New Jersey [U.S.] Senator Cory Booker is their ideal spokesperson, a cynical, photogenic and utterly dependable corporate whore who can be counted on to keep the anti-Trump rabble safely inside the Democrats’ big stinky tent. …

The Democrats leading the charge against Trump must meet exacting qualifications. They have to be loyal servants of the one percenters, of banksters, hedge funds, charter-school sugar daddies and privatizers of all kinds. They must be dependable supporters of apartheid Israel, of military contractors, drone warfare and U.S. military interventions of all kinds around the world.

To boost their party’s fortunes in this new era, Democratic Party spokespeople need to be gifted hypocrites willing to pose as advocates of immigrants and champions of civil liberties going forward, even though they unflinchingly supported the biggest deportation and mass-surveillance regimes in history implemented by the Democrat who just left the White House.

They must focus narrowly on the handful of issues on which corporate Dems actually disagree with Republicans, like abortion rights [and, I’ll add, LGBT rights — and other identity politics], and not stray to areas which might indict their own party along with Republicans.

And they must absolve their party of responsibility for running an incompetent campaign by blaming the Russians. Hillary is history, but her big stinking tent is still there, and Democrats are crying for a “united front” against Trump, led by spokespeople who can stick to the corporate script.

Cory Booker is a great fit. As Glen Ford, who has followed his career in Black Agenda Report and Black Commentator since 2002, notes, charter-school sugar daddies from the Olin, Bradley and Walton Family Foundations and the Manhattan Institute funded his early career. Cory’s wealthy friends bankrolled and promoted a slick Hollywood documentary, “Street Fight,” to ensure his 2006 election to Newark’s City Hall. …

In 2010 on the Oprah show, Booker announced a $100 million “gift” from Facebook owner Mark Zuckerberg to Newark’s public schools, whose budget was still controlled by statehouse Republicans, to implement the latest “run-the-school-like-a-business” nostrums of Cory’s old friends. Three years later, when Booker left Newark for the U.S. Senate, there was little to show for the money.

The one percenters take good care of their guy Cory, giving him three times the cash raised for all his opponents together in the 2013 Democratic primary, and he takes good care of them.

When the anti-Romney rhetoric in 2012 strayed to touch on how the hedge fund Republican actually made those millions, it was Obama surrogate Cory Booker who stepped up on “Meet The Press” to defend the predatory economics of hedge funds, calling outrage against disaster capitalism “useless rhetoric.”

After all, Goldman Sachs was and still is one of Booker’s major contributors. Cory hit the Senate just in time to vote for a major school voucher bill in 2014. …

Cory’s a whore, but a loyal one. If he did for passing motorists what he does for charter-school sugar daddies, hedge funds, Israeli apartheid and Big Pharma, he could be arrested for prostitution.

But Cory’s in the big time, and he’s a leading Democratic spokeshead against Trump. If you’re a Democrat, he’s one of your leaders.

He’s Cory Booker, corporate hooker.

The battle for the heart and soul of the Democratic Party continues. Ain’t nothin’ changed but the date.

To be clear, I wholly agree with Chauncey DeVega’s assertion that “fighting against class inequality does not necessarily remedy the specific harms done to African-Americans and other people of color by white racism.” It is a mistake to ignore racism (and other forms of discrimination) and to focus only on class and income inequality.

However, nor should identity politics supplant the battle against income inequality, and that’s what we saw happen with Billary Clinton’s awful presidential campaign, and that’s what has happened with the establishmentarian Democratic Party, because the establishmentarian Democratic Party’s corporate sugar daddies are OK with identity politics, since for the most part identity politics doesn’t threaten their obscene profiteering (indeed, they even have found that in many instances, they can profit from identity politics).

Significantly addressing income inequality, however, does threaten the establishmentarian Democratic Party’s corporate sugar daddies’ profiteering, and that’s why the establishmentarian Democratic Party has refused to significantly address income inequality for decades.

And further to be clear, a huge chunk of those who voted for Pussygrabber indeed were motivated, at least unconsciously if not always consciously, by racism. I believe that and so I wouldn’t have gone as far as Bernie Sanders did in his remarks (specifically I refer to his remark that “Some people think that the people who voted for Trump are racists and sexists and homophobes and deplorable folks. I don’t agree, because I’ve been there”).

Or I at least would have said it differently; I surmise that Bernie’s meaning, which he did not express well, was that not all of the people who voted for Pussygrabber are racists and sexists and homophobes and otherwise deplorables.

I think that that’s most likely what Bernie meant and I think that that’s probably the truth; I think that there are some incredibly stupid white people who voted for Pussygrabber against their own best interests, incredibly stupidly truly believing that (billionaire!) Pussygrabber magically was going to “make America great again,” that he’d bring all of the jobs back, and with those jobs, the 1950s-era national prosperity. For those people, it seems to me, identity politics wasn’t their No. 1 concern; the economy and their own dismal personal experience of it was.

What Bernie is trying to do, I surmise, is get back some of those white voters in the Rust-Belt states who voted for Pussygrabber instead of for Billary and who thus threw the Electoral College to Pussygrabber. No, I don’t think that Bernie wants the racists and the sexists and the homophobes, but that he wants those whose No. 1 concern is the economy. But they probably won’t vote for a Democrat as long as the Democratic Party keeps calling them “deplorables,” as deplorable as many (if not even most) of them actually are.

White Americans still make up more than 60 percent of the nation’s population (per the U.S. Census Bureau), and calling them deplorable probably isn’t a great strategy to win a presidential election. Just sayin’. It’s the numbers, folks; whites remain the racial majority in the United States of America.

And as deplorable as many if not even most Pussygrabber voters are, I still put the onus for Pussygrabber’s “win” of the White House on Billary Clinton. She took the Rust-Belt states for granted because they’d gone to the Democratic presidential candidates since the 1980s, and so she’d thought that she already had them sewn up. She and her team of Billarybots in their bubble fucked up big time, Russia or no Russia.

I agree wholeheartedly with Bernie’s assertion that “It wasn’t that Donald Trump won the election, it was that the Democratic Party lost the election.”

If the Democratic Party fronts yet another corporate whore in 2020 — like Cory Booker — then the result will be the same. (Don’t even make me get into the cliche of the definition of “insanity.”)

The fight for the 2020 Democratic Party presidential nomination will be much like the 2016 fight, I think, except that while the 2016 racial battle (Bernie was the “white” candidate and Billary the “black” candidate) for the most part wasn’t very openly, frequently nationally discussed, the racial battle will be quite openly and frequently nationally discussed in 2020 (well, starting no later than in 2019).

It really comes down to this: Which candidate is the most progressive? Which candidate is most likely to carry out policies that would benefit the highest number of Americans possible?

Would that candidate be yet another corporate whore, who has a long record of doing only what’s best for his or her corporate sponsors (and thus his or her corporate overlords)? Would that candidate be a corporate whore who only cravenly can run only on identity politics, since his or her actual record only shows what a corporate whore he or she actually is?

Or would the candidate most likely to carry out policies that would benefit the highest number of Americans possible (which is my non-negotiable litmus test) be an actual progressive, such as Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren, who has a long actual record of opposing corporate malfeasance and standing up for the average American?

For those of us who oppose the illegitimate Pussygrabber regime, that’s our choice in 2020, as it was in 2016.

I’m sure that if the pro-corporate Democratic Party establishment fronts corporate hooker Cory Booker, it and the Bookerbots (Hookerbots?) will call those of us actual Democrats (that is, we true progressives) who oppose Booker “racist,” just as the Billarybots called those of us who rejected her for the very same reasons “sexist” and “misogynist.”

Calling those of us who rejected corporate whore Billary Clinton (because she is a corporate whore) “Bernie bros” didn’t win her the White House, did it?

Craven identity politics (including slandering one’s actually progressive political opponents as “racist” or “sexist” or whatever) won’t put Cory Booker or any other corporate whore who uses the label of “Democrat” into the White House in 2020, either.

We progressives can — and we will — keep on playing this game.

I and millions of other progressives simply won’t budge. We won’t rest until the Democratic Party is progressive again (or until it has been replaced by another actually progressive party).

Call us “sexist,” “racist,” “crazy,” “Communist,” “radical,” “extreme,” “hippie,” whatever slanderous bullshit you want to call us to lamely try to get us to acquiesce to your center-right, sellout, self-serving, pro-corporate, treasonous bullshit. Our days of supporting the sellout Democratic Party, which is just a hollow husk of what it once was, are long gone.

P.S. To be clear, I don’t want to understate the importance of the Democratic Party (or a new, truly progressive party) standing up for the civil rights of racial and other minorities. It’s that we must walk and chew gum at the same time. Engaging in identity politics (in the good, non-toxic way) or battling income inequality is a false choice. We must do both.

And of course Bernie Sanders can’t know what it’s like to be black. (Or Latino. Or a woman. Or gay. Or…) He can know only what it’s like to be Bernie Sanders. And the state that he has represented in Congress since the early 1990s, Vermont, is overwhelmingly white, which is what it is.

I believe that Bernie’s heart is in the right place, and that as president he’d do the right thing for the highest number of people possible, and that with continued dialogue, he would get even better in terms of understanding and representing minority groups’ concerns.

Sadly and pathetically, though, I sense that blacks’ biggest problem with Bernie hasn’t actually been that he has been deficient on black issues, but that he isn’t black. Under these black supremacists’ “logic,” a U.S. president (at least a Democratic U.S. president) from here on out must always be black, then, even though blacks are only 13 percent of Americans. (Gee, that’s fair! And so democratic!)

I’m gay, but I’m not going to demand that a presidential candidate be gay, even though we have yet to have our first out non-heterosexual president.

I’m going to demand only that a presidential candidate be progressive, and I’m always going to support the most progressive (yet still viable) presidential candidate, regardless of that candidate’s sex, race, sexual orientation or age (as long as he or she can still do the job, I’m not worried about a candidate’s age). Unlike it is for too many so-called Democrats, for me it’s not all about me and my own identity group. It’s about what’s best for the highest number of people.

The Democratic Party shouldn’t be the vehicle through which any minority group tries to gain political control of the majority. I will put that fact out there, because that’s what identity politics, in its most toxic forms, actually aims for: the tyranny of the minority over the majority.

That’s not progressive and that’s not democratic.

Finally, for the record, I’m fine with Elizabeth Warren as the 2020 Democratic Party presidential nominee if Bernie doesn’t run, but I’m concerned that her nationwide favorability ratings aren’t nearly as high as Bernie’s.

That disparity is due, I’m sure, because he already has conducted a presidential campaign, and thus is better known to the national electorate, and I surmise that Warren has been a victim of actual misogyny (recall that Yertle McConnell infamously said of Warren, “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted”) more than Billary Clinton ever has been. (People just don’t like Billary, regardless of her sex. It’s her personality, her character and her record, not her XX chromosomes. [Nor is it Russia.])

What I hope happens is that Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren keep working together as a dynamic duo. A Sanders-Warren ticket for 2020 would be incredible.

*To be fair, plenty of faux feminists also discriminated against Bernie because he is a man, and supported Billary for no other apparent reason than that she is a woman.

To support one person over another primarily because of his or her sex is to be sexist.

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Familiar 54-46 intraparty split should humble new DNC chair Tom Perez

Image result for tom perez keith ellison

Reuters photo

Tom Perez, right, and Keith Ellison, left, speak yesterday after members of the Democratic National Committee fairly narrowly picked Perez as the party’s new chair. Perez immediately asked Ellison to be his deputy, and Ellison accepted.

My pick for the new head of the Democratic National Committee was progressive U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, but I probably more or less can live with Tom Perez, who won the contest yesterday — depending upon in which direction he goes (namely, right or left).

Ellison was endorsed by Bernie Sanders and by Elizabeth Warren, and so of course the Ellison-Perez race became a proxy for the Sanders-Warren/actually Democratic wing of the Democratic Party and the Obama-Clinton/center-right sellout wing.

The vote yesterday was close — 235 votes for Perez to 200 votes for Ellison, or 54 percent to 46 percent — so no, the election of Perez, who was President Barack Obama’s labor secretary in his second term and considered to be the more establishmentarian Democrat of the two front-runners for DNC chair, was not a resounding endorsement of the outdated, corporate brand of the Democratic Party that brought us “President” Pussygrabber.

I find yesterday’s vote percentages for DNC chair interesting, because in the 2016 Democratic Party presidential race, actual Democrat Bernie Sanders garnered 46 percent of the pledged delegates (delegates earned in the primary elections and caucuses) to DINO Billary Clinton’s 54 percent.

That’s actually rather stunning, given that Billary already had run for the Democratic Party presidential nomination in 2008 and that few even knew who democratic socialist Bernie was before he ran for president. (Actually, that Billary lost to Obama in 2008 when Obama had been on the national stage for only four years demonstrated how widely disliked she is even within her own party.)

With Perez’s win yesterday, the establishmentarian, Repugnican-Lite “Democrats” apparently retain their small majority of power over the party.

The question, however, is whether they can have lasting success without the strong support of the other 46 percent of the party. Billary’s loss/”loss” in November certainly suggests that they no, they can’t.

That said, it’s also possible — no, probable — that given the historical unpopularity of “President” Pussygrabber — he is the first president in modern history to begin his term with a net negative favorability rating* — the corporate Democrats, under Perez’s lead, will claim that because Democrats picked up a bunch of seats in Congress in November 2018 (as the opposition party almost always does anyway), this is evidence that their brand of “Democratic” politics actually works when, in fact, they’re just the political beneficiary of the fact that now we have the most-hated new president/”president” of modernity and of the fact that the opposition party almost always picks up seats in Congress in the midterm after a new president/”president” is elected/”elected.”

But let me find some silver lining here: Perez, who had been considered for Billary’s running mate last year and who had the backing of Team Obama, including Joe Biden, is the first Latino head of the DNC.

It’s a victory for Latinos, who increasingly are a vital part of the Democratic coalition and who deserve the increased political representation, perhaps especially now, while they are under attack by the fascist, unelected, illegitimate, treasonous Pussygrabber regime.

But let me find the dark cloud in the silver lining: Unfortunately, even as labor secretary and even after Billary Clinton flip-flopped on it, Perez still dutifully supported the now-dead Trans-Pacific Partnership, which suggests that he’s not as far to the left and as much on the side of the poor and the working class as he should be.

But another silver lining: Before he became Obama’s secretary of labor, Perez was, during Obama’s first term, the assistant U.S. attorney general for the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division.

That’s a plus, as while the Democratic Party must focus more on the working class and the poor and the insane income inequality that has plagued the nation for decades — Billary’s unpardonable loss of the once-reliably-Democratic Rust-Belt states makes that crystal clear — and must disentangle itself from its and our corporate overlords, it must also keep a strong focus on defending the civil rights of everyone, especially now that our civil rights are under siege by the Pussygrabber regime.

Hopefully, Tom Perez is humbled by the fact that 46 percent of the members of the DNC voted for Keith Ellison** and the politics that he represents. We haven’t seen much humility in the members of the Obama-Clinton coalition thus far — even after Billary’s defeat in November.

Hopefully, Perez’s immediately having made Ellison his deputy chair was more than just political optics; hopefully, it means that Perez knows fully well that the Democratic Party can’t keep ignoring the 46 percent who want it to go in a different direction than it has been for several decades now.

P.S. “President” Pussygrabber characteristically tweeted:

The race for DNC Chairman was, of course, totally “rigged.” Bernie’s guy, like Bernie himself, never had a chance. Clinton demanded Perez!

Why Pussygrabber used quotation marks around “rigged” I’m not sure; I suspect that like much, much, much else that he doesn’t understand, he doesn’t understand the correct usage of quotation marks.

It hasn’t been in dispute that the Clinton camp backed Perez, but there is to my knowledge no evidence of the vote for DNC chair having been “rigged.” I have read and I surmise that plenty of political pressure was applied on the voting members of the DNC to support Perez or Ellison, but “rigged”? I’d have to see evidence of that to give it any credence.

What’s the closest to the truth, methinks, is that the establishmentarians die hard. They hold onto their power for as long as they humanly possibly can. Unseating them takes a concerted, sustained effort — and it takes time.

But it’s hilarious when Pussygrabber pretends to care about Bernie Sanders being mistreated by the Democratic Party establishment, as though corrupt billionaire Pussygrabber truly cares about a democratic socialist.

And, of course, when he isn’t claiming to care about Bernie’s treatment by the Democratic Party establishment, Pussygrabber is referring to him as “crazy Bernie.”

Yeah.

Pussygrabber apparently still thinks that he’s actually going to pick up the support of the Berners. He’s not. Anyone who remotely understands what Bernie Sanders stands for never could give the likes of Pussygrabber a shred of support.

*”President” Pussygrabber’s favorability rating has been stuck around only 40 percent — with more than 50 percent of Americans disfavoring him — for some time now. See here and here.

**To be fair and balanced, Ellison’s only potential weakness for DNC chair, that I can think of, is that he is a sitting U.S. representative. The last chair of the DNC, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, was and still is a sitting U.S. representative, and as chair of the DNC she did a shit job (her resignation in disgrace in July was overdue and was a relief).

Not to say that Ellison couldn’t have handled the two jobs at the same time, but at least Perez will be able to focus solely on being DNC chair and not have to run for re-election every two years.

Some would say that Ellison’s having been the first Muslim elected to the U.S. House of Representatives is a mark against him, especially in the current political climate of bullshit hysteria that the unelected Pussygrabber regime is trying to stoke in typical fascist style, but even as an atheist I have no problem with Ellison being a Muslim. He has shown no indication of trying to shove his own religious beliefs down others’ throats, and so he’s fine by me.

P.S. Since I wrote the above paragraphs, I have read that Ellison had pledged to resign his seat from the House had he won the DNC chairmanship. (This indeed quelled the criticism from the Clinton-Obama camp that he wouldn’t be able to do both jobs, even though they never made that criticism of Wasserman Schultz, of course.)

I have not read that Ellison plans to resign his House seat to be the deputy chair, and I doubt that he will.

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Billary moves closer to losing to Trump

Fivethirtyeight.com right now puts the chance of the above occurring at only 52 percent and the chance of the below occurring at 48 percent. Prolly too early to celly Billary Clinton’s Democratic presidential nomination, methinks.

I was listening live to NPR this afternoon when it was announced from the Democratic National Convention that it’s official: Billary Clinton is the 2016 Democratic Party presidential nominee, and is the first woman to receive the presidential nomination of the Coke Party or the Pepsi Party.

I truly wish that I could celebrate that, but I just can’t, and I cannot for three main reasons:

  • Billary Clinton isn’t a progressive. She herself not even a year ago proudly publicly proclaimed herself to be “moderate and center.” This has morphed into her more recent claim that she’s “a progressive who likes to get things done” (or something very close to that), but no, that bullshit rhetoric was deployed just to secure the nomination. She is center-right, which is why so many millionaire and billionaire Repugnicans, like Michael Bloomberg, support her for president. If it were Bernie Sanders’ convention, the likes of billionaire Bloomberg would not be speaking at the fucking Democratic National Convention.
  • Billary didn’t become the nominee fairly and squarely, but had the help of the “neutral” Democratic National Committee at the highest levels. We have e-mail evidence of that fact (and DNC head Debbie Wasserman Schultz would not have resigned if there had been nothing there), and Yahoo! News reports that both Bernie’s campaign manager Jeff Weaver and WikiLeaks have indicated that more DNC e-mails and more details of the DNC’s chicanery meant to help Billary and to harm Bernie are forthcoming. The corrupt DNC’s hope and wish, I’m sure, is now that we actual Democrats have DWS’s slimy head on a silver platter, we’ll stop there, but the DNC still needs to be disinfected and decontaminated from top to bottom. And no, blaming Russia won’t cut it. As Bernie supporter and former NAACP head Ben Jealous has pointed out, the Russians didn’t write those DNC e-mails.
  • There is a very good chance that Billary Clinton will lose to Donald Trump on November 8. Yes, it might be a bit of a post-convention bounce, but Trump is now ahead of Billary by 0.9 percent in Real Clear Politics’ average of nationwide polls between the two of them. In a four-way race, RCP’s average of nationwide polls puts Billary at only 0.2 percent ahead of Trump. This isn’t surprising when you consider that in the Democratic Party primary elections and caucuses, Bernie won 45.6 of the pledged/democratically earned delegates and Billary won only 54.4 percent of them. Team Billary’s (Team Billary, of course, includes the DNC) cheating aside, had Bernie garnered only 4.5 percent more, he’d have reached 50.1 percent, beating Billary in the pledged delegate count. Billary is pretty weak within her own fucking party, or she’d have done much better than 54.4 percent, especially in her second run. Hell, even with the DNC’s body-slamming the scales, Billary didn’t do very well. If you’re not convinced yet that Billary is a weak candidate for the Democrats to have put forward as their champion, know that fivethirtyeight.com reports today that “Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump Are Now Equally Unpopular” and that fivethirtyeight.com right now puts Billary’s chance of beating Trump at only 52.4 percent.

The fact is that throughout the primary season Bernie did much better against Trump in the match-up polls than Billary ever did, yet the incredibly stupid and/or deluded Billarybots from within their bubble long have been calling for us Berners to rally behind Billary, an obviously weak candidate.

Well, the Billarybots got their wish today; it will be Billary on the ballot in November.

When Billary loses to Donald Trump on November 8, the Billarybots will blame Bernie Sanders for having had the audacity to run for the nomination also; they’ll blame us “Bernie bros,” I’m sure, for not obediently and blindly having handed over our hearts, our brains and our testicles and dutifully supported Billary, the obviously weaker of the two candidates (and she’s not even a fucking Democrat, if you define a Democrat as a progressive); and they’ll even blame Russia.

This is as far as their “vision” will allow them to see.

Their blinders will cost them (and those of us who are actual Democrats) the White House. Whether the Democratic Party — and maybe even the entire nation itself — ever will recover from their blindness after Donald Trump sits in the Oval Office remains to be seen.

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Billary blew it with ‘safe’ Tim Kaine

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia greet the crowd during a campaign event on July 14 in Annandale, Va.

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Billary Clinton and U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine campaign in Virginia last week. Today Billary announced a Clinton-Kaine ticket.  Wake me up when this snoozefest is finally over. Zzzzzzzzz…

Queen Billary Clinton’s No. 1 requirement in a running mate, I am confident, was that he or she must not overshadow Her Highness. 

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, her pick, certainly fits that bill.

An adjective often used to describe him is “boring.” (He even calls himself “boring.”Yahoo! News notes that Billary’s selection of Kaine is “a safe, centrist choice that will likely disappoint some in the progressive wing of her party.”

“Some”?

The No. 2 requirement in Billary’s running mate had to be that he or she is a centrist, that is, a fellow Democrat in name only — certainly no Bernie Sanders, and not even an Elizabeth Warren.

Billary’s pick of a moderate Democrat/Repugican Lite from the South is wholly in line with her and her husband’s political start in Arkansas — and their long history of giving the party’s left-of-center base the middle finger.

In having picked Tim Kaine, Billary in effect picked herself — as a man who is a decade younger.

Don’t get me wrong; I don’t hate Tim Kaine. Indeed, I (and millions of others) know little of him, pretty much only that he personally opposes abortion, given his Roman Catholic background, and that he has been supportive of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which even Der Fuhrer Donald Trump opposes.

But Tim Kaine (whom I might come to hate in the future, as I learn more about him) is wholly uninspiring. His political philosophy, like Billary’s, appears to be stuck in the 1990s.

I’m glad that Billary didn’t pick as her running mate New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker; he’s an empty suit, a Barack Obama wannabe.

And while we’re long past due for our first Latino or Latina president or vice president, neither U.S. Secretary of Labor Tom Perez nor U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro has the experience to be only a heartbeat away from the presidency. Perez’s only elected office was a seat on a Maryland county council, and Castro’s only elected offices were a member of San Antonio’s city council and then the city’s mayor.

In my book, if you want to be president you had better have been a governor or a U.S. senator, and if you want to be vice president you had better have been a governor or a U.S. senator, since as vice president you might end up as president.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, like Kaine, was a governor, so he has vice-presidential chops, but, like Kaine, Vilsack isn’t an exciting or an inspiring person, so I’m glad that Billary didn’t pick him.

Billary should have picked as her running mate U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.

Why?

Billary, I believe, with her choice of running mate sorely needed to excite her party’s base more than she needed to try to assuage any fears of the voters of the flyover states — states that are going to go for The Donald anyway — that white men are losing their grip on positions of power to women and to non-whites.

(This was, methinks, Billary’s No. 3 requirement in a running mate: that she pick a white man in order not to spook too many centrist, center-right and even right-wing voters, to whom she always has shown more allegiance than she has shown to the Democratic Party base.

I mean, these are fragile voters, and after we’ve had our first non-white president, we can’t have a two-woman ticket or a ticket of a white woman and a non-white person!)

Even Donald Trump picked yet another milquetoast white man to be his running mate. Billary couldn’t do better?

Had Billary picked Liz Warren, she would have excited the hell out of her base. She would have excited progressives and women.

Instead, Billary picked Tim Kaine. Yawn.

To be fair, maybe Billary asked Liz and Liz said no. (If Liz were smart, and she is smart, she would have said Oh, hell no! to playing third fiddle in the Clinton White House 2.0.) I don’t know.

I do know that the addition of “safe” and centrist Tim Kaine to the ticket gives me and millions of other progressives (most of us Berners — and Bernie won 45.6 percent of the pledged Democratic delegates, let me remind you) zero reason to vote for Billary.

I mean, I’d had no intention to vote for her anyway — I still most likely will vote for Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein — but the addition of an actual progressive to the ticket was the only thing that, coupled with the looming fascism of Der Fuhrer Donald, perhaps could have induced me to vote for Billary.*

And a two-woman ticket wouldn’t have been a bad idea; it would have been a brilliant idea, after having had nothing but two-man tickets throughout our nation’s history.

But instead of making a bold, visionary — even revolutionary — move, the utterly uninspiring, charisma-free Billary played it “safe.”

We’ll see what and where “safe” gets her on November 8.

*Queen Billary is going to win my state of California and all 55 of its electoral votes anyway, so it doesn’t really matter for whom I vote for president or whether I even vote for president at all, but I will vote for president.

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Sick of Bernie? You’ll miss him when he’s gone and it’s only about Donald

27DARCY-SANDERS4.jpg

No, despite Slate.com’s recent snarky headline “Bernie Sanders Officially Announces He Will Run for President Forever,” he won’t actually run for president forever.

Bernie’s last chance to be able to sway the Democratic Party super-delegates to his side at the party convention in late July was to have a big win in California’s primary election on June 7, but he lost California (which, despite the conspiracy theorists’ angst, is not shocking, as Billary Clinton also beat Barack Obama in the 2008 California primary; I don’t know what’s wrong with Californians [well, I do have an inkling, actually, but that’s another post…]).

Even that plan (to win over the super-delegates after having won California) was a long shot for him, but now, Bernie’s only hope for the presidential nomination would be if Billary, say, had a major stroke or a major heart attack or died in a plane crash or bus crash or was indicted for some crime.

Bernie won’t win the 2016 Democratic Party presidential nomination unless one of those kinds of scenarios comes to pass, but he does have the right to continue through the convention. He has more than earned that. Against a deck stacked against him, he garnered 45 percent of the pledged delegates (the delegates more-or-less-democratically elected in the primary elections and caucuses).

Think about that: a 74-year-old self-described democratic socialist from Vermont with glasses, wild white hair and a Brooklyn accent whom most Americans have known for only about a year now garnered 45 percent of the vote against Billary Clinton, who has been around longer than has dirt, and whose resume includes first lady, U.S. senator, U.S. secretary of state, and two-time presidential contender. (She is great at holding titles, but interestingly, she sure doesn’t have any real accomplishments to list on her resume.)

The Democratic Party establishment didn’t go down this time, but next time, it certainly can (and probably will); from having blatantly ignored the needs and the desires of us, the people, because for decades now it has been too busy catering to the desires of the corporatists and the plutocrats, the Democratic Party establishment is weak and is ripe for toppling.

For Bernie to drop out now would be to forestall that long-past-due toppling, which he apparently recognizes. (See this pretty good piece on Vox.com on this topic.)

An associate of mine has the theory that Bernie won’t drop out between now and the Dem Party convention because he wants to prevent another Dem convention conflagration like we saw in 1968. Maybe, but perhaps such a conflagration is unavoidable anyway; it has, after all, been that kind of presidential election cycle.

Although this protracted primary battle has been a bit fatiguing, I’m not mad about Bernie taking it to the convention, and if you’re mad at him, reflect upon the fact that not even a year ago, Billary Clinton proudly publicly proclaimed that she is “moderate and center.”

Were Bernie to go away now, Billary would return to the center-right even more quickly than she most likely is going to do anyway. At the very least, Bernie can force her to have to at least pay lip service to progressive values, beliefs and ideas at least through the convention.

If Billary were trustworthy and had integrity and didn’t have a center-right, Democratic-in-name-only, Repugnican-Lite record, Bernie could have exited already, knowing that she’d keep any promises to be more progressive.

So blame Billary for being a DINO, and don’t blame Bernie, for his hanging in there for as long as possible.

If Bernie if nothing else successfully changes the party’s presidential nominating process, such as by eliminating super-delegates and requiring open primary elections in all of the states that hold primary elections (that is, allowing at least independents as well as registered Democrats to vote)** — as he is trying to do — then with his presidential campaign he will have achieved something significant.

Bernie Sanders has run a valiant campaign, and the nation owes him gratitude that he probably never will receive (Americans aren’t very good with the gratitude thing).

The weeks before and the months after the Dem Party convention are going to (continue to) be dismal. As the Democratic Party establishment has done next to fucking nothing for us commoners over the past many, many years, their only “message” will be a message of FEAR of DONALD TRUMP!!!

I’d say that we deserve better than that, but since we don’t fight for more than that (true, some of us do, but most of us don’t), it probably is exactly all that we deserve.

*California doesn’t certify its June 7 primary election until July 15, but as I type this sentence, Bernie has 44.5 percent of the vote that has been counted thus far in California, which is in line with how he has done nationwide.

Alas, California is a reliably blue state, but it isn’t as far to the left as are the other two Left Coast states (Oregon and Washington), both of which went to Bernie.

**The caucuses probably should go, too, as they are open to too much chicanery and don’t allow people who must be at work and people who can’t easily leave their homes to have their voice heard. The caucuses should be replaced with primary elections, and I’d rather that we have one nationwide primary election day rather than spreading the primary-season voting out over several months, but these two latter reforms are more unlikely to occur any election cycle soon than are the reforms that Bernie is suggesting now.

Also, of course, the Electoral College needs to be scrapped. We should have scrapped it long ago and replaced it with a simple popular vote. If it’s good enough that we choose our governors and U.S. senators by a popular vote, then it’s good enough that we choose our presidents with a popular vote, too.

If we chose our presidents by a popular vote, you could say with at least some credibility that when I don’t vote for Billary in November (I’ll probably vote for Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein again) I have helped Trump, but since we have the winner-takes-all Electoral College, my not voting for Billary in November won’t matter at all, since I live in a solidly blue state and all of its 55 electoral votes already are assured to Billary.

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Billarybots want Liz Warren to be a spoonful of sugar to sweeten the ordeal

Senator Elizabeth Warren listened to testimony during a Senate committee hearing in 2013.

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The call of many Billarybots for U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts to be Billary Clinton’s running mate at least is an admission of how weak a presidential candidate Billary is. But while such a team-up would benefit Billary, how would it benefit Warren and her future political career to be a probably-invisible vice president with probably little to no influence within the second center-right Clinton administration?

There is chatter among the Billarybots now that Queen Billary making Elizabeth Warren her running mate would be the spoonful of sugar that would help the rest of us choke down the bitter horse pill that is Billary.

Billary booster Michelle Goldberg of Slate.com, for instance (although she’s not nearly the Billary booster that Salon.com’s mega-Billarybot Amanda Marcotte is), recently wrote this (links are Goldberg’s):

On Thursday we learned, via Politico, that had Joe Biden run for president, he would have asked Elizabeth Warren to be his running mate. According to reporters Glenn Thrush and Annie Karni, Biden has “recently told associates that Warren would be an equally smart pick for Hillary Clinton.” The Huffington Post reported that several people in the Clinton campaign are also pushing for Warren.

They are right. Choosing Warren would be an uncharacteristically bold and thrilling move for the cautious Clinton, one that would help unite Sanders supporters behind her candidacy while throwing its feminist promise into high relief. Clinton is already playing the woman card; now, to belabor a metaphor, she should double down.

One of the many dispiriting things about this primary season is the degree to which Clinton’s baggage has dampened excitement over the prospect of our first female president. She’s been near the center of power for so long that her possible presidency seems less like a breakthrough than a wearying inevitability.

Further, in order to get close to power, she’s consistently subsumed idealism to realpolitik; her career is littered with grim compromises, from reluctantly backing welfare reform to voting to authorize war in Iraq. Thus some progressive women who enthusiastically support Clinton feel like they have to apologize for it.

Other progressive women who’d like to vote for a female president feel like they can’t enthusiastically support Clinton. Obama’s campaign created an incandescent sense that America was on the cusp of history. That magic is missing from Clinton’s long slog.

If you haven’t said it yourself, you’ve surely heard it: “Of course I want to see a woman in the White House, but…” Warren on the ticket would annihilate many of those “buts.” She would help to neutralize some of Clinton’s very real flaws; it would be harder to accuse Clinton of doing the bidding of big banks while running with Warren, the scourge of Wall Street.

Warren’s presence would give disappointed supporters of Bernie Sanders a reason to rally to the Democratic banner. And by Clinton’s side, she would make it blazingly clear what an epochal moment this is for American women. She’s a choice who could electrify both Clinton’s fiercest progressive critics and her most devoted acolytes.

Of course, an all-woman ticket carries real risk — that’s the flip side of its audacity. Already, Clinton is likely to face misogynist headwinds, and Warren would make them stronger. People sometimes claim that the deep, widespread antipathy to Clinton, particularly among men, is unique to her and has little to do with her gender.

Warren’s political career shows us that this is not the case. When she ran for Senate in Massachusetts four years ago, she was regularly disparaged as both a liar and a crone; the Boston Herald referred to her as “Granny.” We were constantly reminded that while people admired her competence, they weren’t sure they liked her. (One poll found that even Democrats found her opponent, Scott Brown, more likable.) Warren won thanks to a large gender gap: According to a CNN exit poll, Brown won 53 percent of the male vote, but Warren carried 59 percent of the female vote, and women were the majority of the electorate.

It’s possible, then, that Warren could exacerbate rather than ameliorate some people’s — particularly some men’s — resistance to Clinton. As T. A. Frank points out in Vanity Fair, social science research shows that when minorities team up to form a duo, they are judged in more stereotypical terms than they are individually. “If this is a reliable dynamic, then it means that Clinton is seen by voters first and foremost as a Democratic presidential candidate, and not simply a female,” Frank writes. “But if she were to pick Warren as a running mate, gender could start to color many people’s views much more.” …

[Clinton] is not going to win this race by persuading white men who are uncomfortable with women in power. She will do it by turning out the Obama coalition, probably adding more married white women to it. Warren can help her do that. She’s shown that she’s eager to, leaping into the Twitter fray against [Donald] Trump.

If a vice presidential candidate’s job is to attack, Warren is ready. Watching her go after the short-fingered orange chauvinist from now until November will be a pleasure. The fight for the first female president should be a joyful feminist crusade, one that progressives can join without reservation. Warren can make it one.

I agree with some of what Goldberg has to say, and it’s refreshing to witness a Billary supporter actually publicly acknowledging that Billary is not an exciting candidate. Billary’s being an uninspiring candidate — demonstrated by the fact that thus far democratic socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont has won 19 states and has won 1,437 pledged delegates to Billary’s 1,717 (45.6 percent to 54.4 percent, a gap of only 8.8 percent) — long has been the elephant in the donkeys’ room.

What is disappointing about Goldberg’s piece is that she apparently primarily attributes the lack of enthusiasm for Billary to the fact that Billary has been around so long (well, if Goldberg’s primary attribution isn’t actually supposed misogyny, that is; charges of misogyny are peppered, predictably, throughout her piece). But Billary Fatigue is only one piece of the puzzle.

Hell, I’ll even ignore the piece of the puzzle that I could label the “Clinton Scandal Fatigue” piece. A much larger piece of the puzzle than how long she has been around on the national stage is Billary’s long history of political opportunism and flip-flopping, such as how she publicly called herself “moderate and center” just back in September 2015, but now calls herself a “progressive” since she’s running against the actually progressive Bernie Sanders, who has done quite well for a “fringe” candidate.

(A more concrete example of Billary’s famous flip-flopping is her miraculous embrace of a $15-an-hour minimum wage only after both New York and California adopted a phased-in $15-an-hour state minimum wage when her current presidential campaign always has supported only a $12-an-hour federal minimum wage — and still does on its website.)

Billary’s being a multi-millionaire who certainly wouldn’t want to even try to try to try to live on $12 an hour herself and who demands hundreds of thousands of dollars per speech and her having been part, with her hubby, of the now-thank-Goddess-defunct Democratic Leadership Council, which turned the Democratic Party from the people’s party to the corporate weasels’ party, are other huge pieces of the puzzle as to why so many of us who lean left of center don’t like and don’t trust Billary.

Billary has said that Bernie isn’t a real Democrat when she really should look into the magical mirror that she surely possesses like a Disney villainess. (Actually, I’m sure that she has, and when she asked the mirror, “Who is the most Democratic of them all?” the mirror answered, “Bernie Sanders,” which no doubt sent her into a flying-on-her-broomstick rage.)

But the Billarybots don’t like to discuss these inconvenient truths.

Instead, they frame quite-legitimate opposition to Billary as misogyny, which apparently does a lot to relieve their cognitive dissonance that their “heroine” actually is just yet another self-serving political asshole, but which harms the cause of feminism because the so-called “feminists” defend abject slimebags like Billary Clinton, whose center-right socioeconomic politics harms women and families here at home and whose right-wing war hawkishness harms women and families abroad — yeah, that’s really feminist!

Indeed, the “lean-in” “feminism” of today is “feminism” that has become twisted into women demonstrating that they can be just as big as assholes as can men; they can be just as selfish and ruthless, just as financially and politically corrupt, and they can kill just as many innocent people in military actions in a show of “strength.” Woo hoo! “Feminism”!

Since liberalism became warped as “neo-liberalism,” which actually is just conservatism masked as something good, we can call today’s “feminism” “neo-feminism.”

And dragged into this stinking mess should not be Elizabeth Warren, whom I consider to be a true feminist, not a neo-feminist.

Sure, Warren could help Billary greatly in the likability and progressive credibility departments, but what would Warren and her future political career get out of it?

Most of us Berners — and again, thus far 45.6 percent of us who have participated in the Democratic Party presidential primary elections and caucuses have chosen Bernie over Billary — would be disappointed, I surmise, were he to become Billary’s running mate (something that I don’t see happening, as I really don’t see Billary asking him, and I rather doubt that he’d accept even if she actually did ask him).

Most of us Berners would, I surmise, view Bernie’s agreeing to Billary’s running mate as his selling out — big time — on his progressive principles and promises.

Why, then, would we feel much, if any, differently about progressive Elizabeth Warren joining Billary on the ballot?

Leave it to a neo-feminist to see it (a Billary-Warren ticket) as an issue of matching biological sex rather than of matching political philosophy; Warren should join Billary because they’re both women, you see.

And this also gets to how much power the vice president of the United States of America actually has, which is not much; the vice president pretty much sits back and either hopes or dreads that the president dies or otherwise no longer can serve in the capacity.

It gets to the public visibility of the vice president, too. We’ve seen little of Joe Biden over the past seven-plus years. He wonderfully wiped the floor with Pretty Boy Paul Ryan’s limp body in the vice presidential debate of October 2012 and he vowed to take on cancer in his last year in office after his son died of brain cancer a year ago this month at age 46, but other than that, how much influence Biden has had on the Obama presidency has not been very clear. If he’s had significant influence on Obama, it’s been behind the scenes, for the very most part.

There is no reason to believe than any vice president to a President Billary would have the power to induce her to run a progressive presidential administration, given Billary’s center-right record, given how power-driven and stubborn she is (except, of course, when political expediency induces her to flip-flop, but of course, no matter what she says, she always acts within the center-right, and given how not even a year ago she proudly publicly proclaimed herself to be “moderate and center.”

Given all of that and the historical weakness and the historical invisibility of the vice president, no, for this Berner, Billary picking Liz Warren as her running mate would not “be a reason to rally to the Democratic banner,” as Goldberg conveniently and magically believes.

It’s not that simple, and we Berners are not that simple and stupid. That Team Billary would believe that adding Elizabeth Warren to the ticket would be the magic bullet only further demonstrates the contempt and the condescension that the Billarybots have for us Berners — who are progressives before we’re Berners and who reject Billary Clinton for very good reasons, paramount among them the fact that she’s not even an actual (that is, progressive) Democrat, but is a Repugnican in sheep’s clothing.

To be clear, I have no problem with two women, even two white women, on the ballot for president and vice president. One, I care primarily about a candidate’s politics; his or her demographics are secondary or tertiary or even further down than that on my list. And two: Fuck, the Obama administration marks the first time in our nation’s history that both the president and the vice president were not white men. (When I voted for Obama in November 2008, it felt good to be part of that history, even though Obama turned out to be only a Caretaker in Chief, the one thing that Sarah Palin actually has been right about: that he’s been President Hopey-Changey.)

If two white men on the presidential and vice presidential ticket were OK for more than 225 years of our nation’s history, then I’m fine with two women and even two white women on the ticket, even though the conventional wisdom as of late is that you mix up your demographics; in 2008 John McCainosaurus picked a woman as his running mate and Barack Obama picked a white man, for instance. (Mittens Romney for 2012 reverted to the historical pattern of two white men, of course; my guess is that his patriarchal and historically white supremacist Mormonism was the largest factor in that retrograde choice.)

In a nutshell, again, my primary problems with a Billary-Warren ticket are that Vice President Warren wouldn’t have nearly enough influence to ameliorate President Billary’s deep neo-liberal tendencies and that Warren would harm her reputation and credibility as a progressive by agreeing to be the center-right Billary’s running mate.

Better for Warren to run in 2020 or 2024 or 2028, methinks, at the top of the ticket, than to run with Billary now.

I’d be fine with Elizabeth Warren being Bernie Sanders’ running mate. (Well, probably more like “ecstatic” than just “fine.”) Their genitalia don’t match, but their political philosophies do. Not only would President Sanders allow Vice President Warren much more of a voice and visibility than the vice president ever gets (exempting grand puppet master Dick Cheney, of course), I surmise, but she’d be his natural successor.

Billary would just use Warren to get into the White House, and then, after that, do you really think that Queen Billary ever would allow Princess Warren even the opportunity to step on her regal cape? No, Billary would treat Warren like Cinderella; she’d keep her tucked away from public view as much as possible.

Unfortunately, we apparently are quite unlikely to see a Bernie Sanders-Elizabeth Warren ticket, because the blind, self-serving Democratic Party hacks are poised to incredibly stupidly make Billary Clinton the party’s presidential nominee, even though presidential match-up polls show Bernie doing twice as better against Donald Trump as does Billary.

Real Clear Politics’ average of the presidential match-up polls right now has Billary at only 5.7 percent ahead of Trump, with Bernie 13 percent ahead of Trump. The Huffington Post’s average of presidential match-up polls right now similarly puts Bernie at 13.4 percent ahead of Trump and Billary at only 5.8 percent ahead of Trump.

If beating presumptive 2016 Repugnican Tea Party presidential nominee Donald Trump in November is the goal, then Bernie Sanders has a compelling argument for the super-delegates to pick him over Billary during the party’s convention in late July.

Unfortunately, I fully expect the lemming-like super-delegates to follow Queen Billary right off of the cliff at the convention. She is, after all, the rodents’ Pied Piper.

And also after all, Queen Billary never really can lose. If nothing else, we always can ascribe her predictable loss in November entirely to “misogyny.”*

P.S. It’s worth nothing that Elizabeth Warren is the only Democratic woman in the U.S. Senate who hasn’t endorsed Billary Clinton. One writer argues that this is why Team Billary wouldn’t pick Warren, but I disagree; if Team Billary viewed Warren on the ticket as being beneficial enough, they’d ask her.

The real question is whether Warren, if asked, would say yes or no. Hopefully, she would have her wits about her, realize that Team Billary only wants to use her, and say no. Even Oh, hell no!

P.P.S. Jeff Greenfield, writing for Politico, points out that whoever would be President Billary’s vice president would be “the most marginalized vice president in a generation.” (Ditto for President Trump’s veep, he writes.)

“Neither Trump nor Clinton is likely to allow his or her vice president anywhere near the center of power,” Greenfield posits, adding:

… The challenge is different for a prospective Clinton running mate — and one that no past veep has ever faced. Yes, past vice presidents have found themselves in a battle for the ear of POTUS with key White House aides and Cabinet members.

But they’ve never had the challenge of competing with a presidential spouse who also happens to be a former two-term president.

Indeed, in many ways, Bill Clinton would be a near-perfect choice to be Hillary Clinton’s running mate. His political skills are unmatched; he knows the dangers that confront any White House as no one else possibly can; he’s even got a track record of working with an opposition Congress — something that neither of his successors can match.

Yes, there’s a pesky issue of whether the 22nd Amendment bars a two-term president from running for veep, and one of the Clintons would have to move back to Arkansas to avoid risking the loss of New York’s electors (constitutionally, electors can vote for only one of the two national candidates from their own state).

But the point is that Bill’s credentials — even as first spouse — make him a formidable power source that would confront any real-life vice president. …

The issue isn’t Billy Boy’s supposed greatness (and speculation of him being Billary’s veep is ridiculous, although he very well might end up as her de facto veep) as much as it is how much he would let Billary’s actual veep have any power. And that is not much.

Elizabeth Warren would want to stay far, far away from this fucked-up drama.

*A post-mortem “analysis” of a Billary loss in November also, of course, quite predictably would put blame on Bernie Sanders for having “weakened” Billary when she’s obviously inherently weak. The neo-feminists would continue to ignore Billary’s glaring weaknesses and blame “misogyny” instead.

And most of the neo-feminists’ attacks on Bernie Sanders and on us “Bernie bros” is, ironically, flat-out misandry — it’s just the flip-side of misogyny. How dare a man run against Queen Billary? How dare he criticize her at all, even though that’s what you do in a competitive political campaign? How dare any man — or especially any woman — support a male presidential candidate over the female candidate? (That was a rhetorical question, but I’ll answer it anyway: For pretty much the same reason that a man or a woman rejected Sarah Palin.)

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The lack of conscience of a liberal: Paul Krugman’s new low against Bernie

Updated below (on Sunday, April 17, 2016)

In last night’s debate, it’s quite true that Bernie Sanders was dismissive of Billary Clinton’s big wins in the Deep South.*

I’m glad that he finally went there in the debate; I’ve gone there many times here myself.

But leave it to New York Times liberal (note that I said “liberal,” as in “limousine liberal,” not “progressive”) columnist Paul Krugman, who brands himself a progressive economist yet whom supports the center-right Billary Clinton, to proclaim, in his latest Bernie Derangement Syndrome-induced screed, that Bernie’s spurning of the South minimally is just like Sarah Palin’s having called the red states the “real America” — but probably also even is about Bernie (and, by extension, apparently, his campaign and his supporters) spurning black Americans. But only Krugman actually raises that specter:

… Over the past week, Mr. Sanders has declared that Mrs. Clinton leads only because she has won in the “Deep South,” which is a “pretty conservative part of the country.” The tally so far, he says, “distorts reality” because it contains so many Southern states.

As it happens, this isn’t true — the calendar, which front-loaded some states very favorable to Mr. Sanders, hasn’t been a big factor in the race. Also, swing-state Florida isn’t the Deep South. But never mind. The big problem with this argument should be obvious. Mrs. Clinton didn’t win big in the South on the strength of conservative voters; she won by getting an overwhelming majority of black voters. This puts a different spin on things, doesn’t it?

Is it possible that Mr. Sanders doesn’t know this, that he imagines that Mrs. Clinton is riding a wave of support from old-fashioned Confederate-flag-waving Dixiecrats, as opposed to, let’s be blunt, the descendants of slaves? Maybe. He is not, as you may have noticed, a details guy.

It’s more likely, however, that he’s being deliberately misleading — and that his effort to delegitimize a big part of the Democratic electorate is a cynical ploy.

Who’s the target of this ploy? Not the superdelegates, surely. Think about it: Can you imagine Democratic Party insiders deciding to deny the nomination to the candidate who won the most votes, on the grounds that African-American voters don’t count as much as whites?

No, claims that Clinton wins in the South should be discounted are really aimed at misleading Sanders supporters, giving them an unrealistic view of the chances that their favorite can still win — and thereby keeping the flow of money and volunteers coming. …

Maybe I have Krugman’s intent wrong — maybe (but probably not) — but why would he write such phrases as “on the grounds that African-American voters don’t count as much as whites” when no one ever said or otherwise even semi-indicated that that was the case?

Blacks voted more for Billary than for Bernie, especially in the earlier contests. She has worn — depressingly successfully — the mantle of wanting to be our “third” “black” president. I get that. (But that doesn’t mean that most black Americans are smart to vote for Billary — no one is smart to vote for her, unless he or she is a fellow millionaire or billionaire who wants to preserve his or her own little private empire by maintaining the insanely unjust socioeconomic status quo.)

The problem that Bernie, his campaign and many if not most of us Berners have with the South — which Krugman conveniently doesn’t mention in his hit piece — is that it indeed is a conservative, Repugnican Tea Party bastion, a spiritually dead, barren land where for the very most part Democratic presidential candidates don’t win presidential elections.

Therefore, one calling him- or herself the mostest Democratiest presidential candidate when he or she actually does the best in Repugnican Tea Party/red states and his or her opponent does the best in actually Democratic/true-blue states is, um, odd. This is, after all, the Democratic Party primary race that’s going on right now.

Further, the Repugnican Tea Party doesn’t exactly embrace such deep-blue states as California and New York and Massachusetts; why the holy fucking fuck, then, should Democrats, or at least those of us who actually are left of center, embrace such deep-red states as Texas, South Carolina and Georgia? (And Florida, while it might not be in the Deep South, is in the South, as is Texas. And both states were slave states, which Billary can “brag” that she won, so please, Paulie Boy.)

Are all of these political concepts foreign to Krugman? (He is not, as you may have noticed, a details guy.)

All of this said, a pledged delegate is a pledged delegate and at the party convention should count the same regardless of the state from which that delegate hails, and we progressives in the blue states probably should not abandon the good progressives of all races and of all other demographics who have the misfortune to live in the red states. I get that, but at the same time, the red states make it very, very difficult for us denizens of the blue states to wuv them.

The red states have, after all, been holding the nation back even before the Civil War. They have been a drag on the nation, not a boon to the nation. But we blue-staters are to just adore the red-staters even while the red-staters routinely openly show nothing but contempt for us, even though our tax dollars keep them afloat.

We Dems and those of us who lean Dem (usually having no other real left-of-center electoral option) have to ask ourselves if we really want our party to be overtaken by red-state beliefs and values (even more than it already has been, that is) — and, again, we should ask ourselves if the members of the Repugnican Tea Party would allow their party to be overtaken by blue-state beliefs and values.

Krugman does make one apparent quasi-valid point in his column, albeit buried within what as far as I know is a patently false accusation:

… So the Sanders campaign is arguing that super-delegates — the people, mainly party insiders, not selected through primaries and caucuses who get to serve as delegates under Democratic nomination rules — should give him the nomination even if he loses the popular vote.

In case you’re rubbing your eyes: Yes, not long ago many Sanders supporters were fulminating about how Hillary was going to steal the nomination by having super-delegates put her over the top despite losing the primaries. Now the Sanders strategy is to win by doing exactly that. …

To be clear, I haven’t yet seen or heard or read (in print or via video) any actual proclamation from Bernie himself that he wants the super-delegates to vote for him to give him the nomination even if Billary won the majority of the pledged delegates (the delegates won in the primary elections and caucuses).

I’ve seen this meme that Bernie “wants it both ways,” that he’s only OK with the super-delegates voting for him regardless of who ends up with the most pledged delegates, but, again, I’ve yet to see, read or hear him make that claim. (If you have a link to a credible, neutral source, please leave it in the comments section and I’ll check it out.)

I’ve long understood Bernie’s argument to be that if he manages to win more pledged delegates than Billary does, then the super-delegates should follow the will of the people who voted and caucused and vote to make him the nominee. That seems fair and democratic to me, even though under the current rules of the game the super-delegates certainly don’t have to do that.

I doubt that the meme that Bernie “wants it both ways” is true because I don’t see the super-delegates swinging to Bernie unless he manages to win more pledged delegates than Billary does. I don’t see Bernie seeing that happening, either. Call him whatever you please, but one thing he is not is stupid.

Secondly, if the candidate who wins the most pledged delegates doesn’t end up as the 2016 Democratic Party presidential nominee (under normal political circumstances), the Democratic Party will have a real problem on its hands, since Democratic and Democratically leaning voters nationwide are split almost 50-50 between Bernie and Billary, and one of the two winning the nomination through the super-delegates alone is going to be a real problem with about half of the members of the party.

Bernie knows this, and I very much doubt that he’d really want to be the presidential nominee with the dark cloud over his head that Billary, not he, had won the most pledged delegates.

Only if something serious were to happen — such as Billary being indicted (between now and the party convention) for her home-brewed e-mail server as secretary of state — could it be justified for the super-delegates to hand the nomination to Bernie if Billary had won the most pledged delegates.

Otherwise, wherever possible, we must respect the will of the voters, even when we believe, even quite correctly, that they’re quite wrong.

I mean, don’t get me wrong: I believe that Billary Clinton would be anywhere from lackluster-at-best (like President Hopey-Changey) to disastrous as president of the United States of America. And, again, I believe that unless they’re rich, those who support Billary aren’t very smart people, as voting against your own best interests isn’t very smart.

But you aren’t a true progressive if you don’t respect the democratic process. And Bernie and his followers are true progressives. And I’ll say it yet again: Despite the talk of Bernie “wanting it both ways,” I’ve yet to see, hear or read any assertion of his that the super-delegates should choose him over Billary even if she has won the most pledged delegates going into the convention (and details guy Krugman, alas, provides in his column no link for his assertion that Bernie anti-democratically and hypocritically “wants it both ways” on how the super-delegates should vote).

Krugman’s claim that “claims that Clinton wins in the South should be discounted are really aimed at misleading Sanders supporters, giving them an unrealistic view of the chances that their favorite can still win — and thereby keeping the flow of money and volunteers coming” is bullshit and condescending, as we Berners have known from Day One that preventing Queen Billary’s dynastic coronation would be an uphill battle. Very few among us don’t know that Bernie’s path to the nomination is razor-thin right about now. We have, in fact, done our research.

And Krugman indeed appears to be accusing Bernie Sanders of being an anti-black racist, because he ends his hatchet job with this:

Just to be clear, I’m not saying that Mr. Sanders should drop out. He has the right to keep campaigning [Oh, gee, thanks for the permission there, Paulie Boy!], in the hope either of pulling off huge upsets in the remaining primaries or of having influence at the convention. But trying to keep his campaign going by misleading his supporters is not OK. [It isn’t, but he isn’t.] And sneering at millions of voters is truly beyond the pale, especially for a progressive.

Remember … : We’re all real Americans. And African-Americans are very definitely real Democrats, deserving respect.

Krugman ends his hit piece by claiming, or at least heavily insinuating, that Bernie (and probably also his campaign and his supporters) have claimed that black Americans aren’t “real Democrats” when that isn’t at all the case. Krugman makes a false accusation and then attacks his own false accusation.

I cannot tell a lie: I don’t like the South. Many but probably most in the South don’t like me, a Californian progressive, either.

But when I think of the South and its politics and what’s wrong with its politics, of course I don’t think of black Americans, who historically and traditionally have been (yes, “have been” means that they still are) the victims of the South’s politics, as the problem of the South; for the very most part I think of the backasswards white Americans who hold this nation back, as they have for generations, as the problem of the South.

And when you look at all of Billary’s votes in the South, I’m quite confident that she received far more votes from stupid white people (if they were smart, they wouldn’t support her, unless, again, they’re rich) than she did from black people.

As far as black Americans are concerned, sure, we can call them “real Democrats,” since the term “Democrat” since the 1990s has degenerated to its center-right/Clintonian designation of today, so close to Repugnican that the distinction between Democrat and Repugnican is like the distinction between Coke and Pepsi, but if black Americans support Billary Clinton, we can’t call them both progressive and informed.

But ditto for everyone else in the South who has voted for Billary — again, most of them white people, I’m sure. Neither Bernie Sanders nor we Berners have singled out black Americans in our critique of the South.

Liberal, Billary-lovin’ Paul Krugman did that.

It’s a new low in his obedient, lockstep support of his fellow limousine liberal Billary Clinton, who one minute is telling us how much she loves black Americans and then the next minute unpresidentially is participating in what is to many an offensively racially insensitive skit.**

Perhaps Paul Krugman sees a juicy Cabinet post for himself in being one of Boss Billary’s hit men.

Update (Sunday, April 17, 2016): I stumbled upon an earlier anti-Bernie screed by Krugman, from April 8. Apparently his attempt to portray those of us who are anti-Billary as anti-black began no later than then. He wrote: “Given her large lead in delegates — based largely on the support of African-American voters, who respond to her pragmatism because history tells them to distrust extravagant promises — Mrs. Clinton is the strong favorite for the Democratic nomination.”

Again, I’m quite confident that Billary has won far more votes from whites than from blacks, even in the South. Blacks are an important part of the Democratic coalition, as are feminists, Latinos, non-heterosexuals, Asians, labor-union members, young adults, et. al., et. al., but Krugman, by repeatedly singling blacks out, is, methinks, up to something here.

His theory that black Americans gravitate toward Billary “because history tells them to distrust extravagant promises” is um, rather novel, and reads as though it were written by a Billary campaign operative: “Black Americans like progressives who can get things done!”

Methinks it’s much more the case that as Billary and Bill’s political careers began in Arkansas, and as Billy Boy was deemed the “first” “black” president, Billary simply has inherited that support, probably especially among older black voters. Also, of course, she’s been running for president at least since 2000, and is much better known than is Bernie Sanders (or at least she was so when the primary elections and caucuses began).

And if Krugman is going to write that blacks prefer Billary because “history tells them to distrust extravagant promises,” how about I write that blacks prefer Billary because history tells them to distrust old white men? I mean, as I wrote at the time, the only discernible reason that Black Lives Matter slacktivists hijacked two of Bernie’s campaign appearances last summer is that he’s an older white (albeit Jewish) guy. (I mean, he’s a progressive who’s on their side, so very apparently it primarily was his race that was their problem with him, and secondarily his sex and his age.)

Krugman in his April 8 column also casually brushes aside Billary’s disastrous 2002 vote for the Vietraq War (she said she was sorry!) and in criticizing Bernie’s policy positions as unworkable, writes, “You could argue that policy details are unimportant as long as a politician has the right values and character. As it happens, I don’t agree.”

I disagree with Krugman. Policy positions emerge from values and character, not the other way around, and in any event, all of us must realize that the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate must approve legislation in the first place (and the courts often get involved, too). And it’s the legislators’ job, not the job of presidential candidates, to hammer out all of the details.

It’s the job of leaders to give an overarching vision, and we have seen that in this race:

Billary’s “vision” is to maintain the socioeconomic status quo, with us commoners expecting no more than a crumb here or there; we are naive if we expect more than that bullshit incrementalism, an incrementalism that is so slow and that gives us so little that it never is anything remotely approaching commensurate with what is taken away from us — in large amounts and with great rapidity — by our plutocratic overlords.

Billary’s “vision” and “message,” in a few words, are “Stay the course.” Indeed, as I’ve noted many times, she uses Caretaker in Chief Barack Obama as her political human shield repeatedly.

Bernie’s vision rejects such foot-dragging incrementalism and rejects the status-quo bullshit that President Hopey-Changey has embraced and that Billary Clinton promises to continue. Instead, Bernie envisions a “revolution” in such areas as income inequality and combatting climate change; whether or not actual revolution can materialize is up for debate, but what isn’t very debatable is that if you don’t call for revolutionary acts at all, under your presidency there most likely would be no such acts.

Having been outside of the corporatized, duopolistic Democratic Party — and yes, corporate whore is a very appropriate way to describe way too many self-identified “Democrats” —  is the only way that Bernie Sanders can promise, with any credibility, that as president he actually would stand up for us commoners instead of doing the bidding of the Democratic Party establishment’s corporate sugar daddies.

Being funded by us commoners instead of by the millionaires and billionaires (with the average contribution being $27), as Bernie never tires of proclaiming that he is, is proof of Bernie’s allegiance.

Billary has zero credibility on these matters, which is why Bernie is doing as well as he is — within 1 percent to 3 percent of Billary among Democrats and Democratic leaners nationwide.

The vast majority of those who critique Bernie Sanders and us Berners as naive, foggy-eyed dreamers want Billary Clinton to win the White House because the socioeconomic status quo, which as president she would work tirelessly to preserve, benefits them.

These anti-Berners include limousine liberals like Paul Krugman — those whom the current socioeconomic system benefits greatly but who are concerned that if they don’t say the right things,*** one day the rabble might, just might, come after them and their wealth with torches and pitchforks.

*He said:

… Secretary Clinton cleaned our clock in the Deep South. No question about it. We got murdered there. That is the most conservative part of this great country. That’s the fact.

But you know what? We’re out of the Deep South now. And we’re moving up. We got here [New York]. We’re going to California. …. And having won seven out of the last eight caucuses and primaries, having a level of excitement and energy among working people and low-income people, doing better against Donald Trump and the other Republicans in poll after poll than Secretary Clinton is, yeah, I believe that we’re going to win this nomination, and I believe we’re going to obliterate Donald Trump or whoever the Republican candidate is.

I don’t know that he had to say “Deep South.” Just “South” would have sufficed.All of the South is backasswards — yes, including Florida (and, of course, Texas).

**Yeah, that skit — for the most part I’ll leave it to others to decide whether or not they’re offended, as I generally don’t believe in offense mongering, especially on someone else’s behalf (that’s one of the corollaries of our wonderfully toxic identity politics), but when I first saw video of the skit, actor Leslie Odom Jr.’s claim to be offended by New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s use of the term “C.P. time” was so realistic that I didn’t realize, when I first watched the clip of the skit, that it was a pre-planned skit; I’d thought that Odom Jr. genuinely was registering his offense at a spontaneous joke by de Blasio, and when Billary stated that “C.P. time” means “cautious politician time,” I truly had thought that she had just very nimbly tried to rescue de Blasio from his poor-taste gaffe. (That the whole thing was scripted makes sense; the highly scripted, polished and pre-prepared Billary usually doesn’t think on her feet like that, nor has she ever struck me as that clever.)

I think that it would be difficult to call de Blasio a racist, as his wife is black and his two children are biracial, but minimally, we certainly can call him tone-deaf, and ditto for Billary for having participated in that skit, and what the hell was Leslie Odom Jr. thinking?

***The reason that the Democratic Party has embraced toxic identity politics and jettisoned socioeconomic justice is that for the very most part doesn’t hurt anyone’s bank account to, say, be pro-choice or to support same-sex marriage…

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