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February 11, 2020

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Evangelists Think King David is back but in fact its Caligula. Likely the last president. A king for life surrounded by prince and princess's.
A Sheriff John in every Baron ran city-state. Everyone else a commodity. And by January 2021 the plague could take millions.
The Democratic party has been deconstructing since 2016 and Perez is losing the internal battle.
Actually North America started down hill in the 1400's.
As i post unconcerned old folks are hard at it at bingo in the club house.

I hate brevity but in this case i will make an exception: BLOOMBERG 2020!

I like to say that politics is not about being right. It's about being effective. And probably nothing is less effective than a cult that imagines it has all the answers. Bernie's messianic delusions will not heal or save us. That would require a hefty majority of Americans who fervently desire the rule of law, tolerance, and a sane social matrix. Everything we value about freedom and equality depends on a liberal order and good will. It cannot be faked with sneering outrage and cynical partisanship. It has to be worked at daily.

Republicans discovered 50 years ago that they could divide Americans against one another and conquer politically. This is now the great tragedy of our republic and barring some epiphany on the right will not stop anytime soon. The only question is whether we can delay the descent into authoritarianism long enough to beat them soundly as the ballot box. Without a serious candidate opposing Trump, it seems unlikely and the republic will perish as we know it.

Ezra Klein has written a book that could help us understand this predicament: Why We're Polarized. The problem is as old as our species: tribalism and identity. There has always been a tendency to see "others" as the enemy. The most superficial differences can be the most toxic, e.g., skin color. But almost any difference can be weaponized by those who are easily defeated by moral and spiritual complexity (see: any evangelical Christian). Now that the left has decided to play this game as well, it's hard to see how it ever ends. One way would be to demand we reserve part of every colloquy for ambiguity and doubt because without that, there's no space to change and grow. I'm not hopeful but I'm ready to give up my own anger and certitude in this effort. We have to stop the madness and it has start inside the heart of every patriot.

Beautifully written, Soleri. Thank you.

Rupert Murdoch has broken the politics of three nations.

The road ahead has never looked darker and more treacherous.

Great post RC.I feel your pain and concern. Even though I am 73 with Parkinsons,I think you “nailed it” as the younger generations would say.

Ah, Americans... it is hard to see clearly when you're deep in the weeds. Trump was elected because the majority (or close to it) of voters were tired of "same old, same old". The centre is hollow, friends, and a centrist Dem candidate will ensure another four (at least) more years. Bernie hasn't been attacked, much, by the right because corporate media and the DNC are doing their work for them. If he becomes the candidate that will change. You betcha! BTW, the right doesn't have all the guns...

Let's see, a 70-something socialist with a heart condition, a gay mayor of a college town, a lefty woman who has trouble with truth-telling and math, now there's a slate most Americans can relate to.

I fear the Democrats will shoot themselves in the foot yet again, and that will be fatal this time.

Trump has never been over 50% in approval rating. Never. He will struggle to win in states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin now that people see him for who he is. Yes, the Republicans have given him license to commit more felonies, and that should be our biggest concern in the election, but Trump always makes things worse for himself. He has no filter; he can’t help himself. He will sic Barr on his enemies, but it will be so transparent that however it will help him, it will hurt him more. I have met several people online and in the real world who voted for Trump and will not do so again. I have yet to meet the reverse.

Exceptional Soleri, truly. I have stopped the stupid trolling on some of sites i visit. Oddly, they are right wing, not left.

The Bulwark (William Krystol et al) is just brilliantly written articles by never-trumpers and no comments. The other, The Resurgent (Erick Erickson) has varying articles and lots of trolls looking for a fight.

If i post, they are polite comments and no sense of argument. Same with face to face or even Facebook. I used to lash out, but it is senseless and counter-productive to ever getting to a better place.

Again thanks S, we need more common sense and less hatred.

I respect your opinion, Jon. However, I don’t see ANY sustained excitement for a Democratic candidate except for Bernie. And that’s a problem, because without the young vote, we’re screwed. We’re likely screwed anyway, but that’s another topic. A Sanders candidacy is the only one that will ensure solid turnout among millennial and Gen Z voters. We need them. Another factor to consider- maybe it takes a zealot with zealous followers to fight Trump. I don’t know. I do know I’ve given up any hope of normalcy for the remainder of my lifetime.

As for the identity politics issue, it reminds me of nothing more than the old cliche used during economic downturns: “If your friend loses his job, it’s a recession. If you lose yours, it’s a depression.” It doesn’t seem like America is so bad to you, because the injustices didn’t happen to you. This is karma, plain and simple. We need to suck it up, buttercups, and experience what it’s like to judged solely on skin color.

Could not disagree more about Bernie’s chances. He is not proposing anything that any other rich constitutional government has — not given to but voted for and strongly supported to this day. Americans only have to look at the accumulation by the few at our expense. Degrading private medical insurance, increasing educational costs, coarse management, the monopolies running our news, shopping choices, entertainment, draconian law enforcement rather than public safety, racism, sexism, every gain has taken one or more steps back. The Republicans have thrown their lot in with Trump, the vulgarians and racists, and have no inkling to change. The Democrats (Reagan Republicans for the most part) have sold themselves too, but a Bernie victory and a Party victory in the Senate and House could knock them back to a Rooseveltian left. Any other Democrat will just be a continuation of the wars, the gridlock, this conservative death spiral.

Excellent comments Diane and Jerry!

I was a field grunt for political campaigns back when I had better feet. It was always assumed, despite the evidence, disillusioned Millennials/GenXers/etc would show up at the polls. It all looked very good, young supporters are great at manning tables at college campuses, showing up at rallies in the park etc. What they aren't so good at is showing up at the polls at election time. You kept telling yourself, “This time it will be different.”

Who can be counted on to show up, in triplicates it seems, are retirees and their quest to turn back the hands of time. Bloomberg has the kind of persona that can comfort the aged, earn the respect of the middle, provides an animating presence that appeals to the young. The field advanced by the Democratic Party does not inspire any confidence the election can be won.


If Bernie isn’t capable of candidacy, then who is?

As we know currently, the only other viable option is Pete. Biden is dead in the water, Warren’s supporters have lost all enthusiasm, and every other candidate is just dividing the vote at this point.

Don’t even get me started on Bloomberg. He’s just Trump with a few liberal policies sprinkled on top.

I would settle for Pete. I truly would. If he wins the nom, I wouldn’t be happy about it, but I wouldn’t think twice about sending my vote in for him. But if Bernie isn’t electable, should we fool ourselves into thinking Buttigieg, a candidate with a freshman resume, has a better chance?

If it comes down to Trump vs. Sanders and Trump gets re-elected, Sanders isn’t to blame. The entire DNC is for not rallying people to fight for what is right.

Bloomberg's "stop & frisk" policy will be a nonstarter in Detroit and Milwaukee. Maybe the DNC can sacrifice the electoral votes of Michigan and Wisconsin for the mythical Republican voters in Arizona and Georgia who will supposedly change their vote from Trump to Bloomberg and carry the two confederate states. Not the bet I would make.

Yes, Michigan and Wisconsin are not Seattle. The 2016 votes cast in the few counties that matter in those states indicate that the Seattle type voters whose numbers would have easily swung the election showed up and voted as if they were Seattle activists. Not for Clinton but certainly not Republican. The voting notion and pattern that no Democratic nominee is ever classically leftist enough has existed for decades there and well before California changed from a Republican state to deep blue. The voting camps within the state, not the average voter(whatever that means} is the key to reading the tea leaves. Sanders might have a better shot than many think.

Rogue is an Arizona "leftist": A liberal Republican. It's understandable he projects this background in his political analysis. I have learned a lot from his writing and thank him very much.

Bleeding heart liberal here from MN who wore my politics on my sleeve for too many years. When i retired and moved to AZ i walked away from it all. Way easier.

The past 3 years have been too hard to watch from the sidelines and not get involved. I've been disappointed in the candidates on the dem debate stage. Uninspiring to say the least.

With Bernie, i hear the same old song, rebuild unions, take care of working families. Sounds great, i bought it for most of my working years (i spent 25 years inside organized labor). Reality sets in and politicians seldom deliver.

Ultimately, our system of government is finding compromise, not just saying cool stuff and making it happen. Someone tell me what Bernie has gotten done in all his years in the senate. Virtually nothing.

Now we are to believe that a small group of hard core believers are going to sweep him into office (all while being tagged with the socialist label) and then magically the house and senate are going to bow to his knee. Really?

I don't mean to come across harshly and i am more than willing to listen, but someone explain logically how he gets elected and then how he advances all the "free stuff" agenda he proposes.

No politician delivers on "the promises!"
The goal is to defeat Trump and stop the GOP destruction of democracy and their hurry to deplete earth resources. While bringing us polluted water and air.
And imho a Leo judiciary.
Thst said, it will be a young people driven miracle if Bernie gets the nod as Perez and his troops are intent to not let that happen. May the force be with those desiring Trump and his Mafia be gone.

Bernie is as big a narcissist as Trump. He just wants to run his shtick for his cult and bask in the adulation.

He is not a viable national candidate in my view because his cultists will not get their noses out of their "devices" long enough to bother to vote.

And moderate Americans ain't voting for "a socialist."

And Black Baptists will not vote for Mayor Pete.

Connor said, "If it comes down to Trump vs. Sanders and Trump gets re-elected, Sanders isn’t to blame. The entire DNC is for not rallying people to fight for what is right."

I agree.

A year ago i thought this was a DNC problem.
https://www.politico.com/news/2020/02/13/trump-boost-2020-primary-115031

For doggiecombover
Bernie's medical records and his Trumpian response. Got to Hell!
https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/02/13/sanders-trump-media-114791

for Jon and Soleri
the Bernie Roadblock
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/roadblock-bernie-sanders-congress-medicare-for-all_n_5e45ac30c5b6e095c6bcceb0

Thanks for the links Cal, interesting reads, especially the comments following the first one regarding Bernie's medical records.

Maybe i am too practical, too pragmatic, but the idea we are running on an agenda no one believes we can accomplish seems foolish. Free stuff is never free.

Lastly, i have zero interest in seeing our left wing crazy replace their right wing crazy. Executive orders and AOC becoming the new normal is anything but normal.

Presidential Executive orders are the destruction of congress and the road to fascism regardless of the political party.
Regarding AOC, I suggest she is "normal" given her geographical political constituency. And she's a tough proven bartender that can go word for word with blowhard one line bullshitter Donald.

And lately i hear it's "The New Normal."

I think the up by your boot straps old timer " nothings free" is a misused and misunderstand good ole boy comment.

Many of my neighbors are from Canada for 5 to 6 months.
They seem happy with their "free stuff."
Except Winter.

Except their free stuff isn't free Cal. The chicken breast we buy here on sale for $1.49 a pound on sale cost $8.99 a pound. Health care costs are rolled into everything they buy. We can debate if it's a better value and more desirable for everyone to be covered, but that is another discussion for another time.

God help us if AOC is the "new normal," any more than trump is.

Bill, I’m not knocking your dislike of AOC, but I’m curious to know exactly what your criticisms are.

Rich Lowry (yeah, that guy) has an interesting piece in Politico that addresses the problem center-left political parties have in a post-industrial era. The milieu that gave rise to social-democratic movements no longer exists, which is why liberals have to scrounge for voters in the center more interested in cultural issues than class warfare.

https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/02/12/sanders-would-bring-the-center-lefts-collapse-to-us-114749

Hey Connor. I suspect AOC represents her district in a way those who voted for her love. Likewise for Omar, Tlaib and Pressley. I find their brash outspoken nature too extreme for my liking.

The problem (for me)is they have become the new "voice" of the democratic party. They're not, not even close. I don't like being painted with a brush that in no way resembles who i am and what i believe in.

We could debate whether it's their fault or not, but in many cases they have been the loudest and most obnoxious people in the room. Hence we all get tagged.

It would be like saying Steve King from Iowa is your average republican. He's not, some are worse (just kidding).

The scary thing about soleri's link above is the question: are we going down a path that has proven to have such an ugly end game? If so, we better figure a way out of it before it is too late.

AOC,The Loud "new normal" said,
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/medicare-for-all-sanders-aoc-warren_n_5e470bc7c5b64433c616474a

I think Trump was the beginning of Loud Mouth as he shouted down his GOP competition.

Bill, Average retail price for chicken in Canada 2015-2019
Published by Emma Bedford, Jan 23, 2020
The retail price of chicken has remained relatively constant over the past few years, staying between seven and eight dollars per kilogram. In December 2019, the average retail price was 7.04 Canadian dollars per kilogram. In 2019, the price peaked in July when it reached 7.72 Canadian dollars per kilogram.
However note that what Canadians are feeding their chickens before they murder them is likely safer than what the US is feeding you.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-labels-said-organic-but-these-massive-imports-of-corn-and-soybeans-werent/2017/05/12/6d165984-2b76-11e7-a616-d7c8a68c1a66_story.html

I prefer fruit and plants and no grain products in my diet.

Where does all the pessimism come from? If you look at the polls and pretty much all the other indicators, there is every reason for Democrats to feel optimistic. I think it's our to lose. We can do that if we nominate a candidate who scares a lot of voters. Sanders would. If we nominate Klobuchar, Biden or (my least favorite) Buttigieg, I like our chances.

Never have I agreed with Jon Talton more than his perspective on the 2020 POTUS election. There is no way to spin the situation positively at all. It does seem like the only solution is to split the nation as suggested.

"It does seem like the only solution is to split the nation as suggested." So if Arizona and Phoenix go red, we either move or live under the rule of Rs forever? Can't say I like that prospect.

Yep the cradle kid and the Missouri river bank boy have melded together to insure more depressing suppresion of Arizona poor.
I tried writing a list of positive vs negative. But all that i accomplished was fatiguing rock rolling. Camus did advocate action in love and revolt.
"Resist much, Obey little." Cactus Ed.
Maybe in the next 2 weeks a coffee meet of the men and women that post here? The last one a couple of months ago was a good time. And book exchange.

Dang Cal, now i am getting excited. Coffee and meeting some of you guys all at once...be still my beating heart. The only way to add to the event would be for JT to fly in and join us. Just not sure my golf car would be able to make it out of Sun City.

Kidding, i'm in.

Not a Telsa golf cart?
If JT is in town we can meet at Park Central via the light rail

How about Klobuchar? Any thoughts on her from RC or commentators? She was a first year law student when I was a third year at the University of Chicago Law School, although I do not remember her. She seems like a reasonable moderate-liberal. Is she a plausible candidate?

Here’s the September post on the candidates that mentions Amy.

https://www.roguecolumnist.com/rogue_columnist/2019/09/the-field.html

We shouldn't assume that the Russians aren't meddling in the Democratic primaries.

After all, they meddled in Brexit and got the result they wanted. They meddled in the Republican primaries and got the candidate they wanted. And then they meddled in the 2016 general election and got the grand prize--the President they wanted. (With a big assist from Comey, and every Republican candidate's best friend--voter suppression--of course.)

Since the Republican controlled Senate isn't interested in guaranteeing the integrity of our elections, why should we assume that whoever the Democratic nominee ultimately is, Moscow didn't play a hand in his or her selection?

Franklin. Its a done deal. Democrats win by 6 million votes but lose the Electoral College. Russian Oligarchs and Israeli Billionaires celebrate.

Funny, Israel is a Socialist Country with social medicine for all. Nice that our President is supporting it but why is he opposing the same for us?

He thinks he is too Big to Fail?

My well traveled road and "The Road Ahead."

Before Jon scribbles out another great article I want to mention that when I became a teenager Dwight Eisenhower was becoming president. He left office when I became old enough to vote. I became a Republican. Eisenhower has always been my idea of a “good” Republican and what the GOP should be. Nixon and the GOP edged into the South and the party in my opinion started to slide into mental decay. It took a while but the GOP has finally became an organization that does not want a democracy. It wants America to be an authoritarian White Theocracy and aristocracy. Trump as King Ahab is their Savior.
The Judicial appointments of radical Leo Catholics is an affront to me. But it’s hard to find agnostics to fill those positions.
So we trudge on until December and at almost 80 I don’t see a need to changing my party affiliation.

I see some positive possibilities in that the 562 Native American tribes have begun to coalesce and while Bernie and Elizabeth will not likely be the Democrat presidential pick, I think they have brought an increased awareness to the American Public. And American is starting to turn tan. The future holds promise particularly with tweets from my Heroine, Greta and organizations like Southwest Bio-Diversity

Lots of fascinating comments worthy a great debate/discourse but at this stage before Jon writes another beauty; i would love to hear his take on the Bloomberg option.

Jon...what say ye?

Bill, It's still so early in the primaries, that it's too soon to write on individual candidates beyond what I've done. Stand by.

Thank you Rogue for the sober assessment and for the good conversation by commenters. This election is shaping up to be quite fascinating.

On the subject of an American split, I read a book that I can guarantee almost no one who reads this blog would like, but it is a not unbelievable vision of what a split America could look like. And it's not a good thing...

https://www.amazon.com/Peoples-Republic-Kurt-Schlichter-ebook/dp/B01M0H7WQZ/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1A99GE6J7LFKG&keywords=peoples+republic+kurt+schlichter&qid=1582044414&sprefix=peoples+republic%2Caps%2C219&sr=8-1

Damn, you guys are killing me, my reading list is growing by the week. Thank god for summer and more time to laze by the pool and soak it all in. BTW, thanks to Cal for the links, truly an eclectic array of topics.

If you love fiction, here's a book i just finished as the corona virus hit. Throw in Tom Cotton's suspicion's of the virus perhaps being manufactured in a bio plant in China and it all gets oddly possible.

The book: Terry Hayes: I Am Pilgrim.

Hardly time for fiction!
But ive been reading since 0800.
Time to throw on my Still Suit and head into the evil city for a $5 coffee.
As soon as i water my Sajuaro.

Republicans and evangelicals were willing to eat a Trump turd taco in order to get their wet dreams to come true. They were paid back for their gastrointestinal nightmare 100 times over. Will the DEMS be able to stomach a Bloomberg burger? Only time will tell. I hear the salad munchers at the DNC are picky eaters.

Helen Highwater ( old alias from the past, for old times sake)

It's what i love about this site, you guys are profound and profane all in one big gulp (that one's for you President Bloomberg). Seriously, good stuff, even if much of it goes over my head.

I should have known introducing fiction would get me spanked. Thank goodness JT writes his share. Funny thing is Cal, started to read Desert Solitaire and after the first chapter had to see the year it was written.

I found it had the sing-song style and feel of one my early favorites John D. MacDonald and his Travis McGee series. They were released in 1964-1984; the man was a genius with words and weaving a story, not just killing people.

Abbey's book was Sept of 71 and his words draw me in. Sadly i had to put it down for a bit with the big lawn bowling tournament in town and two books due back at the library i still need finish.

Therein lie the problem with following this site. The guilty pleasures of reading the likes of DeMille, Sanford, Silva, Baldacci and a host of others leaves me feeling vulnerable. Should i only be focused on getting more knowledgeable or is it okay to enjoy great fiction writers?

Help me out here gang, am i a sinner unworthy?

Bill, I know your dilemma. My list of books to read is WAY bigger than the time I actually have to read them. I think the only answer is to follow your muse and read what you want to read in the moment without guilt.

Why should I feel guilty? It's not my job to read and it's not like I am so indespensible to the world that it ultimately matters that I read every important book.

I have thought often that things would be better if I could speed read!

Helen Highwater is back. Guess the hormone stuff worked.
Jon 7190. Put your index finger in the middle of the top of the page and read as you slide it to the bottom if the page. Well it kinda works for me.
Bill
McDonald is good but Chandler is b
etter imho.
Currently among several other books i am reading Sam Wasson's book, The Big Goodbye, on the making of the movie, Chinatown.
I read several pages from a number of books during the day along with a number of on line investigative news sources.

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