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April 08, 2016


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Well Jon, there are few that can compete intellectually with you and Walt, and I will not even try. Doesn't matter anyway as Hillary is going to win whether she is in or out of prison. That being the case I am still giving Uruguay (or maybe Why AZ) a hard look, so I can live away from here but be able watch the bodies fall shortly after disaster Hillary takes Command of this rudderless ship, called the United States.
I GIVE you Robert Parry,

U know not many folks gave Jesus Christ a chance around 1 AD and Sanders is not "Muad'Dib" but he just might be the person we SHOULD Have gone with.
Time for me to sign off and go pet a Saguaro cactus.

For the sake of discussion, let's agree to everything that you say. How is it that a newcomer to the DP could have such destructive force? There wouldn't be a column to write if he weren't attracting a lot of followers (what is it, 6 primaries in a row?) The mainstream of the party hasn't brought them in. So let Wasserman-Schultz triangulate them out, at the peril of the party's chances. Why did it take a non-Democrat Socialist to bring so much passion? We can blame Nader for 2000- but why did anybody listen to his message in the first place? Why were "Reagan Democrats" significant? At least BS is bringing in people who will register Dem in order to vote for him. What can the party do to keep them in the fold until November? It doesn't have a clue. I think that Bernie needs a nap. He can walk back a lot of this, and I expect that he will.

Very Excellent points. Thank you.

Bea, Tom Fitzpatrick would have identified whose and what points?

An elderly student radical is running for president by promising Denmark-style social democracy if we simply subscribe to his pet unicorn theory of political change - revolution! It's all completely daft but he is enjoyable in limited doses, and contrary to the manners and mores of other political actors, comes off like he really means everything he says.

This can be a problem. Most people have no idea how politics works. They assume it must be something where less-than-decent types are ground into ethical pygmies by corporate donors. They find someone who doesn't play the game and assume he's Gandhi/Jesus with a Brooklyn accent. Except he's been talking this way for 60 years and has very little to show for it. Listen up: there may be a reason why.

Politics is a very grubby exercise in finding common ground. We get less than optimal results, it's true. But we usually get something, and that something can be improved on later. Example: Social Security. Another example: Medicare. One more example: civil rights. Now, if you have the attention span of someone who watches a lot of TV, you think that if we simply got rid of the bad actors, the political theater could be left to those who only behave with the noblest of intentions. This is a common fallacy, particularly on the Tea Party right, and increasingly on the left with Berniemania. Purity is a siren song whose dulcet melody bewitches the most cynical soul.

Bernie Sanders is temperamentally and intellectually unqualified to be president. Yes, he's a stirring speaker and a decent human being. But he hates politics because like so many others on the far left, he assumes first and foremost that compromise is always hurting the most vulnerable among us. That's not entirely unreasonable given the fact that so many people are really assholes (see: Republicans). But politics is the only means we have to get things done absent violence and tyranny. Sadly we also live in a nation where the angels don't vote like they should and the assholes never miss a bond election.

Bernie taps into our revulsion with complexity, details, nuances, and shades of gray. Finally someone who tells it like it is! Except when asked to spell out his program in more detail than red-meat rhetoric, he comes across like a befuddled senior citizen in a barroom debate. His interview with The New York Daily News was a trainwreck. He couldn't begin to spell out how to accomplish his signature issue, breaking up the big banks. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/04/05/this-new-york-daily-news-interview-was-pretty-close-to-a-disaster-for-bernie-sanders/

Donald Trump's less than rigorous command of details hasn't hurt him with his base and I doubt Bernie's gossamer-grade policy explanations will hurt him with his. Most people aren't interested. They simply want the tribal rush of voting for someone who validates their own prejudices and worldviews. There is one candidate, however, who doesn't fake it. She does her homework, she's policy fluent, she works well with others, and she's roundly hated for all that. Yep, we're the kind of nation that celebrates ignorance and hates depth. We console ourselves by calling her a "tool" and a "corporate whore". Because we're so hip and savvy about seeing through other people. If you voted for George W Bush, you'll know what I'm talking about.

I am all in for a president that is Female and if Warren was running I'd call Bernie and tell him to go back to sleep.
Hillare posed the question, is Sanders really a Democrat which made,about as much sense as is Hillary really a woman!
My question, is she the right woman?

Soleri, that's the best summation of the situation that I've seen yet. Thank you.

God, I'm mystified by the enduring love for Hillary Clinton expressed here. I recall this blog, like Paul Krugman, pushing back hard on Obama back in 2008, making many of the same points.

Here's how I see Clinton, based on her 25 or so years on the national stage:

I'll begin with her four desultory years as Obama's secretary of state, a job from which she bugs out to run for president, with the key task, negotiations with Iran, left for John Kerry to complete.

Before that, eight years in the Senate, where she pleased the likes of Robert Byrd with her professed reverence for the institution. Along the way, she takes the politically expedient act and votes for George W. Bush's Patriot Act and glorious vanity war in Iraq.

In her eight years in the ceremonial role of first lady, her major policy endeavor, universal health insurance, is an utter cock-up.

And yet she's hailed by "Soleri" as a hyper-competent technocrat. Even if she were, so what: she's running for president, not chief policy analyst. I think she'd be shitty at that job, too.

With her husband, she has done a fine job of getting rich while in public service. The frequent grab-assing with the likes of Bill and Melinda Gates at gala events paid off well.

Sanders, on the other hand, presents what I consider to be an appealing life story: A knockabout guy who finds his calling, at age 40, in politics as a small city mayor. I would think Mr. Talton would appreciate the value of that kind of experience.

Then he moves on to a couple of decades as the most liberal back-bencher in the House and Senate, a voice of reason and sanity during the Clinton and Bush-Cheney years.

I understand why the party hacks are galled that he only recently became a Democrat. The rest of us couldn't care less.

And as for his leadership and management skills, look at the campaign he has built.I said the same thing about Obama in 2008. You recall the train wreck Clinton campaign, right?

People like Sanders because, throughout his public life, he has stood for helping average folks who have been left behind by Clinton-Obama neoliberalism. He understands the obvious truth that the rich can take care of themselves.

We no longer believe or trust our technocratic, Ivy League-credentialed betters. They have lied to us and let us down.

Why I am thinking there is no reason for me to vote: It's gamed!
"Welcome to the Elitist Jerks forums, a WoW discussion forum targeted towards topics regarding high-end raiding and analysis of game mechanics."

Soleri, I dont go to bars but you did describe me.
"he comes across like a befuddled senior citizen in a barroom debate"
That said it's this type of intellectual elitism that pushes me further into the desert and inviting less and less folks that talk like they should be making all the decisions for "befuddled seniors". Guess that's why I will never live in NY or Seattle or Portland, I cant think well enough to exist thar.
I am now going to send Bernie more money. If I can remember where I put my wallet.

"In a period of Total Political War, Republicans have weaponized language, meaning, and empirical reality. There is no possible compromise with zealots/white nationalists. The answer is not to counter their insanity with our own. The best we can do is bide our time until we either have super-majorities or Republicans recover their sanity."

This argument is literally why political Reconstruction failed. Republicans lost control of congress in 1873--It wasn't until the election of William McKinley in 1896 (during the Nadir of Race Relations and in the throes of the Gilded Age) that they again held Congress and the Presidency for longer than a congressional term. Waiting twenty years to build a majority (as opposed to confronting white supremacists) led to Jim Crow segregation.

So my question is--why try to wait them out? It doesn't work. They always come to roll back whatever social progress has been made (either because progress benefits people of color or they don't want progress to benefit people of color.) White supremacist ideology gives reactionaries the political cover to unwind liberal advances--or just as importantly, prevent more progressive policies. The honorable political tradition spoken of is one of capitulation--not compromise.

My argument is this--We'll get the government we're willing to fight for. But some of us are less willing than others to fight for it. I don't say this derisively or dismissively--political violence is repulsive. But isn't war politics by other means? The proudest moment in American History (the uncompensated emancipation of slaves) occurred primarily because those mushy moderates embraced the discourse of left-wing zealots. The dimmest moments generally stem from the inverse relation.

Honestly, if the Dems had done something to hold Wall Street accountable when they had a supermajority, this anti-establishment trend may have been abated. Clinton is clearly the better candidate, but she works for the people who own our student debt; she works for people who own our prisons. They robbed us of our future. How is compromise with bankers NOT capitulation?

#theintellectualassassin, said,
"Clinton is clearly the better candidate, but she works for the people who own our student debt; she works for people who own our prisons. They robbed us of our future. How is compromise with bankers NOT capitulation?"

U think Hillary cares about the poor and the masses more than being Queen?

#theintellectualassassin, I pretty much reject your capsule history of Who's to Blame for Everything, but I'm not steeped in the legal arcana of DOJ to know if it's wrong in its law or its political assumptions. Still, there's a lot of conflating going on in your screed. Hillary wasn't the president. Yet, somehow you blame her for student debt. I know we're in a fact-free Bernie Zone here, but you could please explain why someone who was a senator and then Secretary of State is responsible?

About your Taking It to the Streets fantasy: violence is always fun to talk about, but probably less fun to experience. Let's remember who has all the guns. It's not the hippies.

Liberals are going to eventually win this battle for America's soul. Republicans are in the same situation Afrikaners in South Africa were in the 1980s. They know they're losing and they're desperate. In 10 years, Democrats should be in solid control of Congress and the statehouses. I suggest that it's not only premature to start shooting, but it would likely backfire on us.

Desperate candidacies call for desperate means, which I suppose is part of Bernie's appeal. I suspect he's always been a romantic, but, sadly, his lodestar has always been his own legend. Suddenly, late in life, he's on center stage getting the crowd worship he's dreamed about. This is the stuff personality cults are made of.

So...a full quarter of Sanders supporters say they won't support Clinton if she's the nominee, while what was it? 14 per cent of Clinton supporters say they'll support Sanders. Considering the baggage Clinton is bringing, I think that speaks very highly of the Sanders supporters overall. It's getting really, really hard to think about holding my nose and voting for her, personally, especially now that her association with the House of Saud and the Clinton Foundation's racking up big speaking fees for Bill in countries visited by Clinton as Head of State shortly thereafter is coming to light. I think everyone who votes Clinton in the general just to stop Trump, Cruz, Romney, or Jeb (I always say, never count the Bush's out until after there's no way left to cheat) should be sainted, because it's really, really becoming more unappealing everyday, and November is so very, very far away. And you know what? I don't care if Congress doesn't "work" with President Sanders, as long as he has the veto pen, it's better than passing Wall Street and MIC friendly legislation, which is all Clinton would be able to get through Congress.

What MWC said.

Sorry, I meant 14 % of Clinton supporters say they WON'T vote for Sanders.

And that should be Secretary of state, not head of state. I'm tired, I'm outta here.

I'm not a Bernie Stan So I'm not here to defend him.

Liberals won every big city in the country; then white flight happened and, just like South Africa, virtually every city faced economic insecurity. So that's not an inspiring vision of liberal victory.

But this is part of the point: we all know white supremacists have all the guns. And yet we can do nothing about it. We have mass shootings like the Middle East has suicide bombers. Maybe not in frequency but certainly in political impact.

And I never said Clinton was responsible-just that she works for those who were. Am i mistaken in that assessment.

Finally, if you doubt my history, check Wikipedia.

I think that there are 2 discussions here- one about who would be the more electable candidate, and who would function better when in office. I still think that it's HRC. One advantage that the Dems had, perhaps still have, is that their primary race is less likely to divide the party than the GOP 's is to divide theirs. Someone needs to get in there and straighten this out before it gets way out of hand, but I don't think that DW-S is equal to the task. Fortunately the GOP anagram isn't either.
There's another discussion generally by former or alienated Dems who are very pissed off at the party. ( Cal Lash is as always sui generis.) HRC to my mind in many ways is the moderate Republican of the 60's and70's, probably like her Dad and Mom were. "Liberal" like Chuck Percy. It galls me that she's the standard bearer, but there she is and the barbarians are over there, so what are you gonna do? BS wasn't even in the DP a year ago, but he has very substantial traction, despite his shortcomings. The DP is mortgaged to the wrong people, and it angers me.
by the way as a kid I spent a lot of time passing candidates' petitions, stuffing their envelopes, ground game stuff. I did this a long time ago. I spent the summer of 64 in DC living with someone who was right in the middle of real reform, and who paid a big personal price for it. My Daddy did a lot of no-cost heavy lifting for AZ Dems. I know how "it works." Spare me your realpolitik civics lessons

HRC for President!

Bernie Sanders and Jose Mujica or Hillary and Bill for Prez and VP.

Those, "who never oppose the rich and powerful, are not better in my view than Solzhenitsyn's village dogs. The dogs bark; the caravan moves on."
Ed Abbey

MWC I missed your post until now. Excellent post. Goes along with a lot of what Robert Parry points out in his column that I posted above.

Soleri and Jon a comment on Robert Parry's, views?


I don't know Consortium News or Robert Parry. Remember, this column assumes Sanders has won the nomination, so Hillary is irrelevant now. I'm asking for answers to my questions about Sanders.

For those seeking a good primer on the solid reporting on Hillary, there's...


I just finished reading your Parry post, which confirms my greatest reservation about Clinton - her neocon hawkishness. I've mentioned before my own speculations on the subject, whether she might be overcompensating for reasons of gender given her aspirations to be Commander-in-Chief. That said, there's an interesting duality here given that other major Democratic players like John Kerry and Joe Biden aren't subject to the intense demonization that she is on the AUMF vote. Even Susan Sarandon's 2008 candidate, John Edwards, voted for it. The Libya question is more complex given that the country had already collapsed into civil war prior to our intervention. Anything we did or didn't do would probably have resulted in a moral and political disaster. The lesson here is that the exercise of power seldom results in clean outcomes. Does that mean we should never use power? Reading Parry, I get that sense of moralizing that is inherent to left-wing critiques of imperialism. This mixing of categories - politics and ethics - blinds us to the exigency of power. We are necessarily actors first and foremost and only philosophers after the fact.

In my view, we should stop short of McCain-level resorts to military force in every situation. On the other hand, you never say never, and given the nature of some intractable problems, it is probably inevitable that military power will be used. At the time, our European allies, particularly France, wanted to clean a festering wound on its doorstep. It didn't work out that way. This illustrates another issue with having a gigantic military which virtually begs to be used if only to justify itself. Is this always wrong? Well, Bill Clinton did stop a genocide in the Balkans with that military, and it might be that Hillary saw a similar opportunity in Libya. Of course, the playing fields and protagonists were different. Some things work, other things don't.

Anyone we elect president will probably have to genuflect before the realist rump of the foreign-policy establishment. It would be an extraordinary event to see a critic of American power be elected president and I've speculated before whether the Deep State would even allow that to happen. The tragedy here is that being the "indispensable nation" forces us to act in ways that are usually contrary to our democratic values. It's a conundrum I cannot solve, and I doubt Bernie himself has ever thought deeply about this issue. But if this election becomes a referendum on the American military, its size and mission, Bernie will lose big. This may be wrong and it's probably tragic, but it is real. This is not the Republic of Ben & Jerry. We're a nation that is always ready to "support the troops" and spend more, not less, on the military. Maybe Hillary gets that about America and the price we inevitably pay when we see ourselves as the primary bulwark of global order. Nationalism mixes with Realpolitik to create this unassailable political reality: Pax Americana. We on the left can critique its logic but we'd be well advised to respect its rationale.

From my view, Sanders’ approach looks nothing like a “vicious campaign against Hillary”; however, I’ve purposely stayed out of the day to day “horse race” of this election so my emotions haven’t been ginned up by the 24 hour news cycle.

MWC makes some good points as to why Clinton is a perennially weak candidate. How does Sanders’ “unify the Democratic Party”? I had to double check that I was on the Rogue Columnist site and not This Week with George Stephanopolous after reading that. Campaigns are won by clearly articulating a vision and guiding principles, not by diving into the weeds of technical policy wonkery or soothing the hurt feelings of partisan hacks.

I also disagree that the strategy to take back the Congress is to keep circle jerking the various good ol’ boy DNC fundraising networks. The Congress will be won back with the same strategy that Bernie is using on Hillary: campaigning on a reform platform (as opposed to that of compromising and dealmaking with the Insane Clown Posse of today’s GOP,). We are not in an era of statesmen or good faith actors where a Lyndon Johnson-type candidate can arm-twist and back-slap his way to legislative outcomes. Even if we were, HRC would be the last candidate who could succeed at this, as she is universally hated in the GOP. Cackling is not an interpersonal communication skill.

As for your Question #4; HRC is not going to win the New Confederacy and definitely won’t win “angry white makes” either. The only way to make gains in the South is to disconnect from party politics and run on pocketbook issues while simultaneously inspiring young people and new voters. Having an actual Angry White Male as a candidate may help a little as well.

#5 - Yes, they have succeeded in destroying the Clinton brand among Republicans over many years and many millions. This combined with a lack of enthusiasm on the left makes her a weaker general election candidate. I agree it will be a risk to run a Socialist but it’s one I’m willing to take. I’d rather play to win than to not lose.

#6 and #7 - Experience is relevant only because it’s assumed that the wisdom derived from it will guide a candidate to make better decisions. HRC’s experience at State and in Congress include two epic fuck-ups: one she is under criminal investigation for and the other is the worst foreign policy mistake in the history of this country. Obama didn’t have experience either (or the fuck ups)

#8 is mainly just you shit talking, but elections are won by repeatedly articulating a bold vision. Exhibit A is the Washington state primary and the fact that Bernie is crushing HRC in the most educated places in the country.

#9; yes, the stakes are high in this election which is exactly why HRC is a dangerous choice, as it’s heads the world loses, tails the world loses. Time has run out for incrementalism. If you pay any attention to facts and empiricism you already know this.

Ex Phx Planner, thanks for addressing the questions.

Washington state was a caucus, not a primary. Only 4 percent of voters were represented. It was exactly the venue when Sanders supporters believe his inevitably. Yet the state as a whole is highly competitive between Rs and Ds, not at all like a Seattle protest.

Incrementalism is all we have given the reality of a divided country.

Agreed; the point about Washington was not about his ability to win a primary but in response to the repetitive "angry old man" schtick getting old. It would seem that this trait/strategy would first begin to wear on the educated class, but the opposite is happening.

Cackling is not an interpersonal communication skill.

Thanks for the clarifying misogyny.

HRC’s experience at State and in Congress include two epic fuck-ups: one she is under criminal investigation for and the other is the worst foreign policy mistake in the history of this country.

I'm going to take a wild guess that you voted for John Kerry in 2004. Was he also responsible for "the worst foreign policy mistake....."? No? I guess you're weren't quite the purist then that you are today. As for the "criminal investigation", there is none, just another right-wing talking point Bernie Bros uncritically repeat.

Incrementalism is how politics works. We're not going to have a revolution and if we tried, we'd probably lose to the people with lots of guns. We won't make Mitch McConnell cower by have a big demonstration in front of his Capitol Hill office, as Bernie asserts. This is the kind of dopey nonsense that fantasists engage in. It's as real as Susan Sarandon imagining she's part of the proletariat. This unhinged personality cult of St Bernie is rapidly becoming a parody of itself.

And; I disagree that we have "a divided country". We are only 50/50 when comparing the platforms of DNC and GOP; The country is not as divided if you aren't tethered to partisan positions and have the ability to build coalitions around existentially important issues of climate change and economic inequality.

Yes; I did vote for Kerry but didn't support him in the primary. Just as I've said I'll vote for HRC but don't support her in the primary.

One advantage of Bernie's "pure" voting record is that his positions can't be called out by the GOP as bullshit when trying to draw a contrast in the general election. Remember how well that worked out for Kerry?

Am I wrong that Clinton is not under investigation? Maybe "criminal" is technically wrong but your naive if you think she'll be able argue semantics when it's being conducted by the FBI and talk herself out of that corner when Koch industries propaganda machine is unleashed on her.

And, I just cackled at the fact that you, of all people, attempted to call out someone on political correctness. I guess what your think is of most importance for "purity" in the public square are a little different from mine. And you wonder why we keep losing elections.

Jon, your column is about an uncertain and unlikely happening. I take away from this column and comments how Sanders supporters have driven the campaign to a progressive position that I believe Hillary would have otherwise avoided. Sanders has brought to the forefront issues that most of us care about, DEEPLY. And I believe at one time in his life Soleri had more fire in his belly than he does today in his older sage version of incrementalism. He has moved from Socrates ("what I do not know I do not think I know") to Aristotle (best purpose).
Soleri thank you for reading Robert Parry (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Parry_(journalist)) he is an award winning journalist and has been a thorn in the side of Neocon and GOP politicians for years. He and Gary Webb were very involved in the Contra and other such investigations. I fault Sanders for not talking about the Bush and Clinton Crime families even though you seem to think that’s not really true or even important. The House of Saud has been a part of the Bush crime family (and now the Clinton empire) since old man Bush got inducted into the good ole boys organization that’s allegedly has Pancho Villas head stored away for ceremonial rituals. I believe the Clintons not able to join the good ole boy posse decided to create their own. There was no way the bankers of the world were going to let trailer trash Billy aboard and they have done everything possible to destroy the Clintons. However now she may be just Hawkish enough to get those boys on board her train. They are still caught up in killing Joe Smith, hence there is no way they will willing let theocratic Ted Cruz get the nomination. They just got to figure out what to do with Trump.
Good column Jon, good to see Soleri catch on fire again. And other commentator's throwing gas on him to keep him burning. Keep Scribbling, its good.

It's been brought to my attention by Jerry about the Skull and Cross Boys;
A piece by Parry that also may relate to the organization that’s allegedly has Pancho Villas head stored away for ceremonial rituals.

Krugman bad mouths Bernie for something Krugman said Sanders is right about. U cant have it both ways Paul.

Clinton for the poor?

Good questions. Interesting comments; a little heavy on the GD incrementalism . . . .

Compromise? Capitulation? The Word of the Day is Quisling.

Props to Ex Phx Planner. Yes! Always play to win! Bern, baby, Bern!

What would a Sanders' general election campaign & administration look like? Well, obviously, instantaneous fluffy clouds, rainbows & unicorns.

Or, maybe a slow-cookin' revolution. You know, replace the elected jerks over the next few elections; kind of an old-fashioned, out-of-date concept: democracy.

Or, if you prefer the status quo, you can support HRC, Wall Street's fav. She'll make sure our betters stay in charge. How does it feel to live in the industrialized world's #1 most unequal nation? (Do I hear a "We're Number One" chant?).

To the Revolution!

So, besides a few interesting points made above, only more slogans from the Bernie supporters: Like Bernie, little substance, high hopes. I don't know what really irks me more: Sanders forgetfulness regarding his role in deregulating banks during the Clinton Administration, his pandering to the gun lobby, and his indebtedness to the Military Industrial Complex (think F35s in Vermont) ... or Bernie supporters blinders to these facts.

Phxsunfan that's why this Bernie fan is leaving the elitest folks like you to taking care of the important things. As the sun sets, I'm stoking up my desert campfire and yelling a few slogans at the coyotes.
Every screw-up Bernie did pales in comparison to the Clinton criminal empire.
What is it you don't understand abut illegal?

Hows about this: Trump and Sanders both run as third party candidates. Now I got someone to vote for. Or Just Write in under Other.

I wonder what kind of answers candidate Barack Obama would have had to those questions 8 years ago......

What did "Hope and Change" mean?

You progressives have a choice between someone who voted for the Iraq war, against the surge, who gladly takes wall street money and then won't release those speech transcripts, who made $20 plus million last year with her husband, and who has a lot of experience but a dearth of accomplishments, and who has much higher negative than positive ratings:



and then there's the stench of the emails and the Foundation.

The other choice is scandal free, with unquestioned integrity and who is at least 2 to 3 standard deviations to the left of choice A.

And WHO are you supporting?

Why isn't the Democratic Party (along with the Republican Party, which is doing a fine job of burning itself down now too) already overdue for being burned down?

Bernie and Jose Mujica
and YOU.
Be Honest now!!!!

American Eagletarian, the Democratic party in Arizona went up in flames in 1950. And the Theocrats in Salt Lake intend on it being Tits on a Boar until they are all safe and tucked away with their wives in their own Universe where they are one with god.

The election of criminals and
Regarding the last blog on gangsters.
Here is a guy we need Interpol and the US feds to send into exile in Israel.
Between him and the Coke bros they are a national menace and disgrace.


Queen Clinton turns on 1984 static machine.

Note: I dont scare easily.
but for president this is what I find scariest. The scariest in order being,
Ted Cruz (theocrat evangelistic kook)
Hillary Clinton (power hungry criminal)
John Kashish (GOP stooge and a Kook)
Donald Trump (ignorant but not that scary)
Sanders (Naive but wiling to learn)

I added this to the column above:

the most energetic, youth-based political movement in modern American history took down the "sellout" Democratic Party establishment in 1968. It had at its back the wind of the anti-war movement, black power, feminism, the New Left, "days of rage" and, internationally, the youth-fueled rebellion that ultimately drove Charles de Gaulle from power. Americans chose Dick Nixon. Four years later, the Vietnam War still going on and scandal gathering over the White House. Yet the idealistic Sen. George McGovern (a genuine war hero) and his "Come Home America" movement were crushed.

Bernie lived much of this American history. What has he learned? How have we changed into a nation finally ready to turn left?

Bernie goes to visit Taltons religious sage;
Will he come back wiser?


We will only go Bernie's way if we have the desire to die for the cause. Screw Hillary and her gang. May Ted Cruz be exiled to Canada as a religious terrorist. And Jeb Bush sent home to his mommy, the only real person in his tribe.

From the base of a Sajuaro somewhere in the great Sonoran Desert, what's left of it. Whats left of it after the Mega city advocates.

Jon, a note from the desert rat gang is in your snail mail. May Sunnyslope mesquite be its recognized flower.

Probably accurate:http://www.vice.com/read/a-bernie-sanders-victory-just-got-a-little-less-impossible

Soleri, it may be that the truth is fiction and reality is what the rich and powerful decide it should be.
But then maybe Woody Allen was wrong?

Why Bill Clinton should have not taken free food and money from Tyson Chicken.

Can any president be more powerful than the CIA?

Last Chance:

Because the time of the gop-lite, hedge fund run, war mongering "democratic" party is over and on the down swing. The current usa usa model is broken and will go, and suddenly like the USSR model went. What will it take? Another recession, inability to fund endless wars on debt, social security cuts for more wars, or when Bernie/Trumpistas fly together like the Eagle and the Dove.....

HRC for president!

OK, Rogue,
Let me close my eyes and meditate for just a moment on that particular era of US history, the days of Nixon/McGovern.

You asked, "How have we changed into a nation finally ready to turn left?"

Hmmm . . . what has changed for Americans since the 70s?

Americans have learned what it is like to plunge into poverty. Income inequality is a phrase which most Americans now know. But before they heard the words, they lived the slip-slide down the mountain: good jobs gone; wages stagnant; all the new jobs created post-2008 are part-time, sh*t-wage, no-benefit, slave jobs. All the increased productivity in the US economy has benefited the 1%, not the workers; the American middle-class is gone. We've been Walmartized.

Hmm . . . what else?

Education funding at all levels is reduced. (Arizona and Kansas lead the way, but the rest of you are on the edge.) Because of student loan debt, getting a college education is now akin to signing up for lifelong indentured servitude. There is no longer a shared expectation that our children will have a bright future and a good life here.

Pensions are gone. Unions are neutered. Employers are emboldened to routinely cheat workers out of wages and benefits.

Our justice system has been exposed for what it is: a massive, grinding machine set to keep the poor and people of color down; a system where bias is so entrenched that generations have been ruined by contact with it. And now the rise of the sinister prison-industrial system. Great. American corporate investors can make money off of prisoners.

Oh, and don't forget unprecedented corporate greed/corporate welfare. And crumbling infrastructure. And all the dark money flooding into our political system.

Yes, there is a chance the American people are fed up and will look left.

Please, God. Please.

The slogans here are flying faster the than the drool at a Tea Party convention, and the difference between it and Bernie's personality cult is getting increasingly tenuous. Sound, fury, signifying, whatever.

Imagine if an airliner were take over by a group of 15 year-old boys who then decided the best way to fly the plane would be to let the most authentic of them take control because the pilot was a "corporate whore". Or think of a teach-in at a nuclear power plant where the technicians decided to Feel the Bern instead of monitoring the temperature in the reactor core. Or think of some hospital orderlies who insisted that neurosurgery wasn't brain science so they took over the operating theater, donned surgical masks, and brandished scalpels at the anesthetized.

Bernie's moment is arriving at the same moment Trump's is receding. Coincidence? Popular enthusiasm is fickle but its demands are never less than a compound of hysteria and certitude. You don't need to know stuff in our idiocracy. Reagan proved that and now it's Bernie's turn to excise the limits of the imagination. He'll hire the best minds! Susan Sarandon for Fed chair, Arianna Huffington at State, Cornel West for AG. It's too late for incrementalism in this Republic of Berning Man. Power will flow only through the legitimate vector of revolutionary consciousness.

We're free to abandon our political parties now that the One Authentic Voice speaks though Facebook directly to our civic soul. His inner Denmark will guide us through the dark night and stormy days. We will trust him because he's never lied to us in the six months that we've been aware of his existence.

When does the fever break? Or has the body politic already escaped its earthly trammels for the pure and ethereal? Reality no longer has the power to oppress those who can see beyond its vexing complications. All you need to do is believe for the clouds to part to reveal the heavenly mansion of political paradise. Power to the people!

Always good to know the voice of the status quo is ready to chime in and scare us all with . . . Cornel West and Denmark.

Oh, dear. Now the revolutionary guard is upset and will miss his Molotov cocktail lesson.

Not to worry! Luckily, the revolutionary guard has thick skin.
Power to the people! [sans sarcasm]

Soleri, that was some of the best poetry I have read. Great cadance, rythym and the power of the words still echo in my old but today not so befuddled brain.

I wait for "The Fire Next Time".

HRC for president!

JMAV U have a preference for Parrots?
How about a job at the circus as an organ grinder.
Or maybe in India.

I always learn from Soleri. The one subject I doubt we will ever agree on is Ronald Reagan.

When his on-duty nemesis and after-hours friend Tip O'Neill called Reagan an "amiable dunce," Dutch had the Speaker right where he wanted him. Reagan thrived on being under-estimated.

We now know from the extensive writing he did on legal pads that Reagan was a sophisticated political thinker. He was one of the most gifted politicians of the 20th century. Being "the Great Communicator" was a massive advantage. He peeled away the "Reagan Democrats" perhaps permanently from the Democratic Party.

Before entering the White House, he had served two terms as governor of the (then) nation's second most-populated state. He was largely a pragmatist. Despite his anti-Berkeley rhetoric and some early symbolic moves, the University of California system ended up better funded in the Reagan administration. His friendship with Arizona Gov. Jack Williams helped soften California's opposition to the CAP.

This same pragmatism, along with his communication skills, allowed him to manipulate a Democratic Congress to get much of what he wanted. He raised taxes more times than he cut them.

Reagan grew to hate nuclear weapons, particularly after the near catastrophe of the Able Archer '83 exercise, which the Soviet Union believed was the beginning of a NATO invasion. He worked effectively with Mikhail Gorbachev -- a much more flawed leader than most in the West realize even now. The two came very close to total nuclear disarmament at the Reykjavík summit, to the alarm of Reagan's aides and the Deep State. The "amiable dunce" foresaw years in advance that the Soviet empire would disintegrate.

Don't get me wrong: most of Reagan's policies were ill-conceived and his tax cut religion, "government is the problem" mantra and Southern Strategy are cancers that still haunt us. But there's a reason that candidate Obama cited Reagan, rather than Bill Clinton, as a model.

Until the left realized what a formidable adversary Reagan was, it will never move forward to win. And, of course, Reagan couldn't even win a GOP school-board primary today.

My second point is that given the difficulty of this election, it might be a gift to see Sanders as the nominee. We could see if the liberal echo chamber is real. Otherwise, if HRC goes down in November, the echo chamber will continue to believe its tweets and Facebook missives.

Jon, your last paragraph is right on point and had been faintly echoing around.

Clinton the hawk?

and Jon said,
"foresaw years in advance that the Soviet empire would disintegrate."
Reagan saw what many had predicted,
it was not whether but when the economic model would fail.
And Putin is trying to put the pieces back together with his KGB tools and the help of who he decides should be a Russian capitalist billionaire. And the US has helped by once again supporting the wrong corrupt politicians.

Bernie has become an arsonist:

How would Bernie have handled it?

Will Bernie appoint Michael Moore as Secretary of State?

Clinton isn't a hawk. Right wing propoganda has taken root and with left wingers. It's really a sad state. What Clinton is, is a strong candidate and powerful woman. For whatever reason that is threatening to some men and it's wearing thin! Bernie is not a purist and has played the political game, albeit in the Farm Leagues while Clinton was batting with the majors. Nonetheless, his supporters have purchased the snake oil.

Want to take a shot at answering even one of my questions. Remember, the assumption is that Bernie is the nominee and Hillary is history.

From the new end of the column:

While a wide-ranging conversation is always welcome here, this column assumes that Sen. Sanders is the nominee and Hillary Clinton is on the sidelines. So more anti-Hillary/pro-Bernie rhetoric is less helpful. Please answer/discuss at least one of the questions that will confront the Sanders campaign in the general election. Thanks in advance.

Rogue, the "amiable dunce" remark came from Clark Clifford, not Tip O'Neill. Tip and Ronnie got along famously both personally and politically. By contrast, Tip detested Jimmy Carter, which is helpful in understanding why Carter's presidency was so flawed. The pundit Joesph Kraft called Carter "a factionalist of the center" which is key to understanding Carter's priggish disdain for deal-making. Ultimately, his personal "virtue" is what his presidency ran aground on. In this light, you Bernie Tots might want to rethink the efficacy of purity politics. I can't think of a single example where it enhanced either the country or the reputation of its practitioner.

Reagan could compromise, make deals, admit mistakes, and regroup. He raised taxes eleven times during his presidency when voodoo didn't deliver the promised magic. Republicans today are utterly incapable of learning from his example (see: INPHX).

But Reagan was still an ideologue, and more than anything else, his harebrained belief system helped establish the permanent rejection of pragmatism among conservatives. By 1993, the Republican Party was in full thrall to nostrums and bromides that belong more in Amway meetings than in the governance of this nation. Reagan himself was a compulsive anecdotalist who often believed crazy things he heard, such as trees causing pollution. His anti-intellectualism paved the way for Republicans to reject science and empiricism. And his cynical politicization of religous values helped radicalize the nation to such a degree that we are now virtually ungovernable. The damage Reagan has done to America is not excusable because he was a good writer and "thoughtful". The Iran-Contra scandal alone would have resulted in the impeachment and removal from office of a Democratic president. Consider for a moment Barack Obama selling arms to terrorists in order to fund an illegal war in Central America. Reagan only got away with this because of his sweet personality along with the sense that he had already entered his dotage. When Nancy Reagan shook up his staff and brought in Howard Baker to run the West Wing, congressional leaders took that as a cue that Reagan himself was now on a short leash and would no longer embarrass the nation.

Reagan's political legacy is today's Republican Party, probably the most dysfunctional major party in a major democracy and very nearly insane with ideological nonsense and radicalism. It is true that Reagan today would be considered a RINO in this party but that sidesteps the point that his presidency began its devolution in earnest. I recommend the Rick Perlstein book if you're at all vague about the era of Reagan's rise and his role in transforming his party.


Don't you dare try to misrepresent Reagan's tax revolution by selectively (and probably incorrectly) alleging that he raised taxes 11 times.

Even if that's true (and you're not a guy especially good at accuracy) , tax rates were much, much less when he left office than when he entered office. The 1981 tax cuts were massive and despite most liberal predictions of the bankruptcy of the country, GNP took off (as predicted) and the country did just fine. There were indeed some small and subsequent "give back" later during his stellar tenure, but nothing that even began to approach the tax relief he achieved in the 1981 Act.

Despite several democratic presidents since Reagan, there is one primary reason why no sane person will discuss pre Reagan income tax rates as a reality today. And that reason is Ronald Reagan.

You can't learn from his example because you don't even understand it. Stick with the insipid defense of HRC you're presenting here.

Want to read more about Reagan? Spend a little time reviewing the 1984 election. You know, the last time a President actually generated unity in this country.

Those were the days......

Christ. My bad for bringing up Reagan -- good reposte by Soleri, though. Back to the SANDERS questions.

Jon, as I mentioned above "What would Bernie do" questions, are irrelevant. He is going to lose! I much more concerned about what HRC is going to do. Even more important NOT do.
Like not taking on the NEOCONS and the financial community, not legalizing drugs, not saving more wilderness.

AND every reader on this blog knows I am not smart enough to answer even one of the, What would Bernie do questions.
If I was I would run and have Warren as my running mate.

Phxsunfan, said, "Clinton isn't a hawk. Right wing propoganda has taken root and with left wingers. It's really a sad state".

Pure bull shit

AND Elizabeth Warren is a strong contender that should be running.
I am so old I know the guys that invented snake oil. For a world traveler you certainly seem not to be up on Crime by the rich and famous, or maybe you are up on it?

Well I have ran out of slogans so I leave it to the wise guys.

"The answer is not to counter their insanity with our own. The best we can do is bide our time until we either have super-majorities or Republicans recover their sanity."

If the Dems nominate BS,it will rank right up there with nominating George McGovern in 68.(Sorry to say,I remember that).The Rep. oligarchs know that BS is their best hope to win by painting him a wild eyed socialist and scare the hell out of the independents.Don't fall for the bait.

Cal, it's starting to look like you were right to be more worried about Cruz than Trump, I never would've thought the Republican Establishment, the Fourth Estate's service to them, and Trump's own big mouth could've slowed Trump down, but it's beginning to seem like it can happen. I don't believe they're gonna let Cruz be President after he gets rid of their Trump problem for them, he's really guilty of the trysts The Enquirer accused him of, or he would've sued them. They'll roll the thing back out before or at the convention, kill Ted off, and make Romney, Jeb, or Ryan the nominee.
I see Sander's gun legislation record is being brought up again. I personally don't like guns at all, but I can't see any logic in holding mom and pop gun shop owners liable for crimes committed with guns they legally sold. And then, there's also the fact that back when Obama made his statement regarding people clinging bitterly to their guns and bibles, Clinton proudly stated, "I'm a Second Amendment-loving churchgoer!" Please explain how that's ok, as long as we're asking questions about the candidates.

Pat, Trump talk a lot chit but Cruz is one diabolical evil dude.

Killing Che, Not to worry Soleri and Jon, it will not be pretty but Clinton will dispatch Sanders, ending the bloodless revolution he offered up and you refused to be a party too.
Aging does funny things to all of us. Some get more conservative (wise?) and a few get more radical (stupid) that I am.
I give you the loser:

I'm ready for Sanders. I wish more would address my questions.

OK Jon, I slept on it and this is the best my old Befuddled mind could come up with.

Question one: Sanders plan for the Democratic Party is to march straight ahead, win or lose.
Question two: You are overthinking this: Same answer as number one.
Question three: Other politicians need to follow Bernie’s lead.
Question four: Ignore (stupid) white males.
Question five: It’s time to quit lying and time for a Socialist to point out the US really is a socialistic country.
Questions six and seven: Putin does it all the time. Sanders will have to get some good advice.
Question eight: Everything goes stale eventually, just have to work up some new stuff.
Question 9: Is not a question, but a statement of opinion. I would rather have Obama again than Hillary, Thank You.

I Googled "I'm a Second-Amendment loving churchgoer" and could only get one result: Pat's comment here. It's not a big deal since the difference between the candidates on this issue is negligible, at best. Hillary might be pushing it a bit too hard if only to show she can play purity politics just like Bernie. I actually appreciate Bernie's position here: he voted with the NRA because Vermont is a rural state where people own and love guns. There's no shame in voting their interests. Props to Bernie for living in the real world! I wish he'd make a habit of it (see also: his support for the F-35 boondoggle). This is how the system works and congresscritters shouldn't apologize for it.

Bernie's real problem is just the opposite: he's a sanctimonious critic of others doing what he has done with the gun issue. You want to make the system implode? Demand that we only elect purists to office. Fortunately, you have an example very close to home: the Arizona State Legislature. Instead of people crafting deals to solve real-world problems, you have dim-bulb zealots like Sylvia Allen writing bills to turn Arizona into a theocracy. I've stopped arguing with my lefty friends that the answer to these kind of problems is term limits, which makes my teeth hurt just seeing it in print. Please people, wake up. You're tired of nutty pols stinking up the government, you want the opposite of term limits. You want experienced pols like Burton Barr and Alfredo Gutierrez making deals. Arizona actually used to work before voters got particularly stupid in the 1990s. In this thread, the overriding tenor of the comments is how we can't trust Hillary Clinton because she's taken campaign contributions from people we don't like, which means she's on the take! The dumbness of this naiveté is best answered by Jesse Unruh's famous observation: "If you can't take their money, drink their booze, eat their food, screw their women and vote against them, you don't belong here."

Bernie Sanders is the US Senate's Betrayal Queen. Life is so horrifying because everyone isn't Atticus Finch! Or Jimmy Stewart in Mr Smith Goes to Washington! Bernie Sanders gets it! We need to pretend politics is like a religion! That way, we can pretend we're in heaven all the time!

I will be so happy when this season will be over.

Ah, yes Soleri on fire!!!
This has been a really great column no matter the disagreements.

Soleri's post reminds me of Burton Barr's observation that you don't get a lot of Winston Churchills for $8000 per year.(I think he was answering a question about how the Az. legislature could be so stupid-a quaint question compared to the present lege.)I agree that Bernie is a little late coming to the party.He had chosen to be an outsider instead of getting "in the arena" of politics like HC has done.None of us or the candidates are without sin so think in terms of evolution,not revolution.

It took us 50 years to get into this mess and it's going to take a long,long time to get out.Hopefully,without too much pain for my kids and grandkids.Worst case,they can live like I did I did growing up in a small town in a 50 year old home,with one bathroom,no carport and only a work truck to ride in.Didn't hurt me that much.

What Mike no corn cobs?

Props to Bernie for living in the real world!

That's right! Compromise for the sake of compromise, that's how I vote!

Think the Iraq war was a bad idea? Then vote for someone who supported it!

Hate the idea of the proliferation drone strikes? Why then, it only makes sense that I vote for one of their most vocal supporters!

Think Climate Change is a problem? Then support a candidate financed by carbon polluters who lobbied on their (not that those two things could be connected) and proposes a completely ineffective, impractical Rube-Goldberg system for addressing it.

Historic income inequality a concern? Why then we should support the candidate bank-rolled by Goldman Sachs of course. It's naive to think money influences politicians. Antonin Scalia told us so.

All of the above is a positive to our up-is-down "Democrats" on this blog, since it shows she's "in the real world" and not "riding on unicorns".

I've read you long enough to know that you're too smart to be this stupid. So, I'll say it: you're cowards.

Think the Iraq war was a bad idea? Then vote for someone who supported it!

Yep, like you voted for John Kerry in 2004, but without that telltale demonization before the fact.

Think Climate Change is a problem? Then support a candidate financed by carbon polluters who lobbied on their (not that those two things could be connected) and proposes a completely ineffective, impractical Rube-Goldberg system for addressing it.

Yeah, Hillary getting marginally more lobbyist donations from energy-sector employees than Bernie means she's in the tank! And no one knows how to solve global warming like Bernie! After his election, we'll all be riding bicycles to Revolutionary Council meetings.

Historic income inequality a concern? Why then we should support the candidate bank-rolled by Goldman Sachs of course. It's naive to think money influences politicians. Antonin Scalia told us so.

zzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Huh? Oh, yeah. She's in the tank!

I've read you long enough to know that you're too smart to be this stupid. So, I'll say it: you're cowards.

Oh noes! We're weak people not feeling the Bern! Purification rituals might be necessary!

"bicycles to revolutionary council meetings"

Fun! let's play nonsense!

We're a divided country so let's support the Very Serious Candidate and work with the GOP to:

- deport 5 million Mexicans instead of all 11
- Only bomb 6 countries instead of 15
- Limit prosecutions to non-Christian women who get back alley abortions!
- Close the borders but allow white people.

Compromise = progress. Only a "purist" would oppose issues on principle.

Cowards NO.
NOT burning High Octane leaded fuel, anymore. YES
But vote
Knowing "with our industrial civilization sinking deeper into its misery and squalor, drifting into universal civil war".
Ed Abbey

One of the reasons I support Hillary Clinton is that I DON'T love her. She doesn't make me want to join a cult of like-minded zealots who know with absolute certitude what the truth is. In other words, she's an ordinary human being not promising paradise but what is reasonably possible in a sharply divided nation. No fireworks, only as much competence and respect for others that an astute political practitioner can muster.

We all know people who bore us with their absolute convictions. They know that Jesus is the only path to eternal life. Or that Barack Obama is the worst president ever. Or that taxes can only be cut, never raised. Or that vaccines cause autism. Or the real truth about chemtrails. Or that Hillary is the most corrupt person who ever lived. Or that only Bernie can save the world. Most of us give these zealots a wide berth. Some of us are these zealots.

I was never on the fence about Bernie. I knew he was a lone wolf and a gadfly. I also understand politics well enough to know that you don't elect people like him, or Ralph Nader, or Jill Stein president. You look for the person who can encompass as much support as possible that is reasonably aligned with your values. And if you find other candidates generating fanatical support, your eyebrows tend to arch. Because that's a danger sign about both the candidate's beliefs and his personal appeal. You never elect someone from the fringe precincts of passion, theirs or your own. You elect people who are cool, calm, and sane. If you find this idea upsetting, there's a good chance you're making a category error. Politics is not religion. If you believe too passionately in a candidate, chances are you're polluting quotidian reality with messianic fervor. Take a deep breath, calm down, and stay rational. Elections are not meant to be raves.

No cobs,Cal,but I do remember using baking soda to brush teeth when money was tight.Economists in the 50's were predicting that too much money and people only needing to work 20-30 hours per week would be the future problem as they didn't foresee that desires soon become necessities.The beat goes on.

As for the Presidential election,it's the shiny thing that keeps us staring while the Lege. has less turnover than the Russian or Chinese Parliament.We should be talking about that.

HRC for president!

OK, I’ll try, after your FaceBook invitation.

1. “Unify” is not the operative word here. Let the centrifugal force of the disunity send those who are so inclined out of the Party, since by definition Bernie would be the head of it. Oh, do you want to pitch in on the new New Deal Democratic Party? Welcome, comrade. Oh, you don’t? Well, you going to the GOP, then? Or maybe third party land. That would be ironic, eh, you pragmatists, you?

(I am going to not the hostile framing of the question. “Vicious campaign,” “recycling Republican attack points,” etc. It is why I decided not to participate yesterday.)

2. I don’t know. I’m not a political strategist. I’m not sure any exotic strategy would be necessary, however. Sanders winning the would already be a signal of a shift, and if Trump is snaked out of his populism by the GOP, then there are a lot of potential angry right-wingers that just might protest-vote with the other rebel, Bernie Sanders.

3. “Revolution” is not violent or blood-sheddy. If it’s like that, it’s recycled history, no revolution at all. It is meant in this case as something “new.” We cannot see how it will manifest beforehand. I presume in good faith that Sanders is talking about a new generation of voters seeing their role in government oversight in a new light, as in not “othering” their own government like many in the Boomer (my) generation reflexively do.

One does not “assemble” such a House and Senate - one feels compelled to step up and echo the President’s agenda and presumably, in this revolutionary environment, to topple the intransigent legislator(s).

4. The presumption is that this class is becoming more aware of how they are being ripped off and manipulated by divisive politics. Yea, there are some who will never change, but they are older and overly represented and concentrated in that media circus called the Trump campaign. Fuck them.

5. The billionaire dark-money Republican puppetmasters and their media lackeys are shitting themselves right now because of what is happening in their own party. OK, the media lackeys are having a bit of a laugh, which does not bode well for the puppetmasters. I don’t think they have the credibility to effectively red-bait the Senator from Vermont.

6. The same way the Tea Party effectively did it. “Outsider” status. Now they could rejoin that he’s been in government for decades, and try to have it both ways, but that might be easier to swat down when you think about it.

Also, sell the Presidency for its bully-pulpit, and emphasize intent and morality over experience (especially because “experienced” folk got us into this mess in the first place.) Name an outstanding cabinet that reflects the vision of the candidate.

7. Name an outstanding cabinet that reflects the vision of the candidate. As in, not a load of recycled neoliberals and neocons.

8. It’s already old for some people. Like people who frame questions like that. What you see is not what all of us see.

9. I don’t believe this is Russian roullette. If Sanders wins the nomination, it should be a bellwether for the revolutionary mood of the country (mostly centered in the young, who are the future.) Let me qualify that - if he wins definitively. That is why I do not like the trashing of Clinton, have no hopes that there are “gotchas” from the FBI, etc. I want him to win fair and square, otherwise it might be dicey. I admit these last weeks have been heating up but, unlike you, Jon, I see just as much culpability from the Clinton camp, if not more. I’d be happier if Sanders shook it off more, but I’ll give him the status of being human.

(I apologize in advance for typos or word misuse - this was complete stream-of-consciousness writing.)

Petro, thank you for engaging. This is what I have been seeking from Sanders supporters.

De nada, Señor.

Well, Soleri, if you want to take the blinders off and google around some more, you can find clear documentation of Clinton pandering to the white gun owning demographic in 2008. She even boasted of having more support from whites than Obama. But, you probably don't, your mind was made up at the outset, as was Mr. Taltons. I don't guess we'll see any anti-Clinton tirades from Mr. Talton on this blog after she's elected, as we did with Obama, anyway, since we've established that we don't have any right to expect much from her, and we should be satisfied with a teeny bit of incremental progress here and there.

Pat, different people have different views not to torment you with the injustice in all that but merely because we disagree and often for good reasons. I supported Obama in 2008 gladly. I don't recall any strong feelings about Hillary Clinton then but I do recall some of the bitterness leaking out as she worked the white working class precincts in Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. That's politics and it wasn't anything too awful.

What is different eight years later is that the president is term-limited and the outsider campaign of Bernie Sanders is a completely different animal than Obama's campaign was. For one thing, his radical critique of American politics includes the Democratic Party, which I'm loyal to. Bernie himself is not really a Democrat and has shown absolutely no loyalty to the party, or raised money for it, or even promised to do that in the future. This causes me to support Clinton. My own feeling is that if it were Biden instead of Bernie, I would be sorely tempted to go with Joe, who is a real Democrat and was certainly worthy of serious consideration.

In other words, I have no reasons to support Bernie aside from liking his oratory and some of his values. But what good are those things if you're not loyal to the party under whose banner you're running? How do you accomplish a "revolution" without adding support in Congress? Bernie seems to think he's the vector that accomplishes everything. He is delusional.

Cults can be very blinding and controlling when it comes to their leaders. Bernie is a virtual messiah now on the left, and I'm not the type who is religious. I tend to get very nervous when the language starts getting messianic. I've noticed how tetchy the Bernie people are about even mild criticism. I recoil when they begin using abusive and ugly language toward Clinton, and their chronic victimology about everything from superdelegates to media "conspiracies" is exhausting. Scientology has nothing on you guys.

My own feeling is that gadflies should not be president. If Bernie were somehow to be elected president, I think it would be a disaster since he has never worked all that well with others. He's intemperate, inflexible, and sanctimonious. Those are not the personality qualities you want in a president unless you think this nation really wants to be lectured to by a cranky old blowhard. You should count your blessings that this potential catastrophe is not going to happen.

"Yout should count your blessings that this potential catastrophe is not going to hapoen."
Soleri I have said that its not going to happen every Bernie/Hillary conversation we have had.
So are you of the opinion Gadfly Bernie should never have jumped in the race so that Hillary and the party were a completely solid block rolling forward over the insane out of control GOP?
I think the discussion Bernie has brought to the table was a good thing.
R U upset that Trump jumped into the GOP race?

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