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My Brick

by Drew J Jones Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 12:47:32 AM EST

I posted the whole bit about what I observed the day after Election Night 2008.  I hopefully conveyed the joy and pride it filled me with.  I'm a son of the South in America.  It is probably the proudest moment of my life.  The history that, aware of though I try to be, I can't begin to comprehend.  The knowledge of the sheer brutality that heroes of mine -- MLK, John Lewis, Rosa Parks, and so many others -- endured.  To be able to sit there, as Atrios would periodically post, and say, "Deep Thought:  The President of the United States is a black man named Barack Hussein Obama."  I can't even really explain that.

I'm sitting here watching the results of Trump's executive order on immigration.  And supposed "progressives" embracing it and playing the "both sides" game.  "Obama killed somebody with a drone in Yemen, so it's fine to stop some Iraqi grandmother from seeing her kids in San Antonio.  And it's totes fine to detain a god-damned 18-month-old at LAX, because she might..." -- what, throw her fucking Cheerios in the fucking engine?

Fuck them.  With rusted-assed, AIDS-soaked rakes.

I was furious on Election Night 2016.  I'd never been so angry.  Utterly, violently angry.  Not for myself in some sort of self-interested sense.  (Rest assured the Trump administration means fuck-all to me in any pure economic sense.)  No, for my friends and family. And my fellow human beings.  For my grandma, who fought her ass off to see that day we all endured defeated.  For my mom and my sister, who followed in grandma's footsteps.  For my friends' daughter, because I wanted to see her watch the night the first woman -- who, for all her flaws, worked damned hard for the people of this country -- was elected president of this country. And be able to be in the group that was able to say, "See that? Many people literally gave their lives for this moment. And for you. Don't ever let somebody tell you that you can't be anything you want."  A highly-qualified woman.  A hard-working woman.  Who, as is so routine in this world, was passed over for a bloviating, fascist cunt.  

A hundred thousand shit-kicking yokels stole that from us. And unleashed Hell on us all.

And I'm as angry as I've ever been.  I've made peace with the likely truth that I'll never stop being angry.  Fine.  But people were supposedly fed-up.  And wanted nastiness.  And so they did this.  To my country.  And to my president.

Cool.  You're gonna fucking get it.  

Every. God. Damned. Day.

((Comments closed permanently!))


Get out of my god-damned way.  They're in.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 01:05:09 AM EST
If there is a silver lining to cling to in all this shit, I would imagine that it leaves the GOP with nowhere to hide in all this.

They can't claim Behghazi or emails (ha, that one's going down in flames) or political correctness (tho' goddammit Bill Maher is still trying to fly that one. Put the dope away Bill, it's rotting your brain) or Hollywood or how the lack of white gun-totin' librul-hatin' Jesus 24/7 in your face is making America effeminiate or gays or how abortion/women are spoiling their fun......

They can't pretend any of it anymore. Everything that will happen in the next 4 years is on them. Every bill, every executive order, every healthcare reduction, every welfare destruction, the destruction of medicaid/ACA.

And, hopefully, if maybe the Democratic party will stop gazing at its navel, the GOP will pay a price for their over-reach.

Maybe.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 08:59:39 AM EST
Well obviously I don't agree that the dems should stop navelgazing. All the massmobilsation against the Iraq war electorally didn't amount to a hill of beans when the dems ran on a "yes but" platform. They can't be delusional enough to run with Hillary2020?

Still, except for the dems, early signs are moderately hopeful. This looks like a clear overreach and a major defeat in week two could set the tone for the rest. Trump still continues his feud with the news media without having an alternative source of legitimacy and parts of the deep state are still hostile. Of course other parts of the security aparatus are going full fascist and defying court orders. Still, could be worse.

Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler

by generic on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 09:46:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
He's been in office less than two weeks, and his disapprovals are already north of 50%.  It normally takes presidents well over a year for that.  Often multiple years.

The Dems simply need to oppose everything and make 2018 a referendum on Trump.  

Let the 2020 candidates sort out what they're for.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 12:50:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
And plan a campaign that targets every state and district to some degree. It should be easier for a Sanders like campaign to raise money for such an effort in this climate. If the Democrats don't have a candidate in a race it does not matter in that district how large a momentum swing might be. Doing this in '18 will pave the way for '20. And they must honestly address the problems of the influence of wealth in US politics and how that has damaged the self interests of so many.

Enough with a class war which is only being waged by wealthy billionaires and their political puppets from both parties. We will inevitably have old line Democrats elected again and they should be supported in the general elections. The primaries are the time to judiciously decide who to support and who to primary.

Any gains are better than what we currently have.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 03:24:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And the DLC pants-loads still in charge of the Dems will make sure none of that happens.
by rifek on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 09:44:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You know what?  No.

The Democrats have attempted, time after time after motherfucking time, to address the issue of inequality.  The Democrats -- WE, ME, PEOPLE -- have tried to fight the good fight here.  And we've been sandbagged by the people on whose alter you worship.  And the people you claim to speak for, ARG (and MfM's fat, goose-stepping ass), are people who don't fucking care what you think.  But they bizarrely have voted for the very people you blame for everything -- and those Dems have won.

We've been through this.  And you've never had any coherent set of views on it, beyond the usual "DURR HURR Earth-2 Trump might stop the 'nbeoliberals' and anyway teh RevolutionTM will come when we're all dead."

Just fucking stop with it already.  It's that old male macho hippie bullshit of "We gotta blow up the system to save it!"  And it never happens, because -- fun fact, nobody cares about your fantasyland revolution.  Put the Zeppelin record down and wake the fuck up.

Tens of thousands of people are going to die if they repeal ACA.  People here on ET may well be among them.  Not hurt a bit more in service to some imaginary higher purpose -- they're going to fucking die.

That paragraph just above this?  Read it.  Again.  Until it gets through.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 01:29:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
...adding:

To go with Miguel's observation that everything is college football to me:

Your perspective is Nebraska.  Great program, historically.  Led by a shitweasel coach that made our shitweasel coach look like an actual saint.  Then modern recruiting services like Rivals and the like came around, and everybody else figured out gaming the recruiting regulations too, and the whole thing went to shit.  They went back to being Nebraska -- a place nobody cares about or wants to live in.

Nebraska is the populistic white working class.  They get their last gasp and take Ohio State out in the title game.  But everybody else has sorted it out, so it's an inevitability now.  And then they go on to the title game, stumbling about on the fumes of their 'roid highs, and get face-fucked by Miami or Bama or USC or whomever.  

And finally they disappear.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 03:32:55 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Frist, one has to learn to channel anger in order for it to be useful. Too often it just blocks thought. I once thought that the intensity of my anger impressed people. It doesn't.

Second, be sure of your statements. Are you sure that rifek is macho? Cynical for sure.

Third, neither I nor rifek nor MfM have ever, to my knowledge, advocated voting for Trump so that he might disrupt the system. Instead, that is our consolation.

Forth, no one fails to realize that the repeal of the ACA will be a disaster, as well as the stacking of the supreme court, the disregard for the rule of law, along with the rousing up of the most easily manipulative in our society.

You and Izzy seem to believe that, had only Bernie not tried to run, it would have been clear sailing for Hillary. That doesn't account for Trump. And most of the people who supported Sanders voted for Clinton just like I did. It was you and the entire DNC establishment that thought you could cram Hillary down the people's throat. She was a status quo candidate in a change year. And she was uniquely vulnerable to the sort of attacks Trump launched. People pointed that out before the Convention - in the MSM and here.

I for one would have been much more comfortable with Clinton had she ever indicated support for even half of that on which Sanders campaigned and had done it from the start. And she was never convincing that she had truly embraced what she did claim to adopt. I, along with most, never believed she would actually go after crimes committed by financial sector executives. She is too beholden to them. None-the-less I voted for her and supported her on FB and in conversation with acquaintences, etc.

The problem was Hillary. Had she gotten the black turnout Obama got she could have won. Had she gotten the white woman turnout that Obama did she could have won. Had her and her campaign staff had the humility to listen to critics and to campaign actively in MI and WS and to campaign better in PA she could have won. Had she not actively disparaged much of the white working class families, shown more compassion towards unemployed coal miners, like the Kennedys did, she might have won PA. Losing this election to Trump requiared a trifecta of arrogant incompetence, but she was up to that task.

What Comey did was despicable and he belongs in jail, IMO, or, at least to be dismissed as Director of the FBI, but we get to have him longer. But the task was not to just barely win. The task was to bring in a landslide that would insure that whatever the Russians, the FBI and other bad actors did was irrelevant. She didn't.

Sanders is not a raving left winger. He is an FDR Democrat. Even Shhumer is barely to the left of where Ike was in 1960. is The Neoliberal wing of the Democratic party has done every bit as much damage to the Democratic Party as Blair ever did to Labour. We don't need a raving socialist. We need someone who is a solid liberal and who understands that the economy does matter and that how the working class has been treated in the USA needs to be addressed.  

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 06:26:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Do not tell me what I appear to think. You're wrong about what I think, just as you're wrong about the politics of this country.  You're operating from a story you're telling yourself to make sense of facts from your point of view, and you're completely blinded to the viewpoints of anyone else telling you that you're not seeing the big picture. You're just like those fucking blind guys and the elephant.

The very fact that you're dragging Bernie into this and saying we think she'd have had clear sailing if he didn't run just shows how badly you misinterpret what's being said to you. And not only do you believe these stories you tell yourself, you are immune to all facts and reason that contradicts them, throwing out buzz words like Neoliberal. You're stuck in a false narrative and you're desperately trying to sell it to everyone.  I honestly don't care what you yourself believe, I do care that you and people like you are not only close-minded, but that you bully other views and dominate the discourse. You attack your allies.

You're peddling a white working class narrative and that's fine if you act like an ally. Insisting that your issues be re centered, that you take over the party, that the voices and votes of the actual Democratic base don't count, and attacking those people the base has elected as enemies to be overthrown is all kinds of fucked up.

The white working class abandoned the party after the Civil Rights Act was passed, not the other way around. Reagan broke the backs of the unions and the WWC rewarded them. The Republican party has pillaged this fucking country because the WWC and poor will not fucking stand with the Democrats.  They've been barely holding the line in a war being waged on the most vulnerable people and you have the nerve to fucking attack them and blame them for your self-inflicted ills.

This is what I mean by a fairytale -- you've conjured an evil elite villain instead of admitting that well over half the country's white people are voting against their own interests because they won't stand in solidarity with people of color and marginalized groups.

If the WWC would stand with the Dems we would not be in this position. We would have a strong enough team in congress to have stopped or changed things. We would have a huge progressive caucus from the mid-west. Telling a story that eliminates white voters from responsibility is racist and offensive. You don't have the solution to the problem, you're part of it.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 08:11:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Are you accusing the left in general and Geezer in particular of not seeing that working class people vote against their own interest? That's a new one. But what is your solution then? Hope demographics takes care of things and hope the new working class will be less racist?

Do you and Drew think the leftwing not singing enough hosannas about the elected candidate? No one would have noticed her mixed record otherwise? Maybe, but hawking all those Bush official endorsements for the mythical "moderate" republicans might have given the game away anyway.

And I'm really not buying your "if they just had stood with the Dems" narrative. How would you explain this then:

How Each Senator Voted on Trump's Cabinet Nominees - The New York Times -

14 Democrats voted "yes" for every nominee

I mean both anger and grief are justified but I blaming the left for doing the "Bernie would have won" skit won't help.

Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler

by generic on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 09:14:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Do you and Drew think the leftwing not singing enough hosannas about the elected candidate

Should end:
..cost the election.

Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler

by generic on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 10:58:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Your comment is a fine example of the twisted "reasoning" I'm addressing here.  

In your view, asking the faction of the left being discussed here to stop attacking your allies becomes asking you to sing hosannas.  

Pointing out that the WWC voting against their interests is due to racism becomes an insult to your intelligence as to the voting patterns of the WWC instead of taking the main point addressing the motivation.  

Asking for people who presumably share our goals for solidarity is twisted into a false choice of do it our way or hope for demographics to save you, pitting yourself AGAINST the votes of the democratic base.

Then, as the cherry on top, in a discussion about how a portion of "the left" helped Republicans win the election by joining them in attacking Democrats, you proceed to attack Democrats then rationalize the behavior.

You're all saying you won't be silenced and assigning blame like it's a holy sacrament, but then admonish me to not blame the Bernie would've won crowd because blame does no good.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 10:57:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Several points: The leaders of the Democratic Party are not my allies. Just in the last period of their relative power they completely broke one country, scaled up and institutionalized the mass murder program around the world, launched a frontal assault on democracy with their "trade deals", kept building a domestic repression apparatus that would make the Stasi blush with envy and had that same system bulldoze the only grass root anti capitalist movement the US had seen in a lifetime. Any alliance can only be tactical.

More importantly: If I read your complaint right then it is that parts of the left, especially those that supported Sanders kept criticizing the Dems even after the primary was over. Frankly that is not how it works. You can expect party apparatchiks to get behind the candidate once the primary is over but the actual voters you have to win over. And the Clinton campaign did exactly nothing. Single payer will never pass, a 15$ minimum wage is unrealistic, they couldn't even put a fracking ban in the largely symbolic party platform. But really they could have stopped the hippy punching after the southern primaries. After they were fought with the DNC putting its thump on the scale by keeping debates to a minimum any upset was very unlikely. But especially once Trump, their preferred opponent by the way, grabbed the nomination the word from above was "for every dead end Bernie bro we lose we pick up two moderate Republicans." And still I've seen no evidence that the activist left deserted them in large numbers. Jill Stein did get enough votes to elect a few dog catchers but hardly enough to swing the election.
I mean "the people have failed her" is not something any party can get away with.
But I see there is some confusion about where I point my blame. I blame the Democratic party and the professional campaign machinery. Both for pushing terrible policies that are hard to defend and for losing most elections for the last 6 years. I don't blame the individual Hillary supporters for thinking Hillary was the more electable or whatever. And I certainly wouldn't demand that people who now demonstrate against Trump's Muslim ban explain their silence when the no fly lists were drawn up.

And what kind of solidarity are you asking for here exactly?

Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler

by generic on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 12:59:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm asking for the kind of solidarity that admits black votes matter and doesn't ignore the voices and votes of people of color because they chose someone who you don't agree with.

If you think all these problems are caused because the Democratic party doesn't want to fix them, then you clearly don't understand the problem.  You're denying how our system works and ignoring the evidence of the public record. You're refusing to stand against the party who is actually at war with poor and working people and causing all the problems you're railing against. You are working against building support and unity.

If neither party is your ally, then you're not engaged in political activism, you're just having a temper tantrum and you're part of the problem.  If you can't see the person who wants to support the minimum wage laws and raise it to $12 as an ally because you wanted $15 against handing control to the party who wants to eliminate the minimum wage law altogether, then there's something seriously flawed with your thought processes.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 02:08:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm asking for the kind of solidarity that admits black votes matter and doesn't ignore the voices and votes of people of color because they chose someone who you don't agree with.

What does that even mean?

And while you're talking about the public record: Do you deny that "saving social security" for example is an entirely bipartisan obsession? And this lionization of the small (D) behind a name is something I really can't comprehend. You are telling me that people who are mostly millionaires in their own right, spend most of their working time hitting rich people up for campaign money and are as a rule deeply concerned with preserving the civility in their working relationship with the Rs you consider to be the root of all evil, are somehow my natural allies? Unless we are using that word very differently I don't see how that makes any sense.

Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler

by generic on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 08:43:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
If you can't see the person who wants to support the minimum wage laws and raise it to $12 as an ally because you wanted $15 against handing control to the party who wants to eliminate the minimum wage law altogether,
That is a gross mischaracterization of the criticism being raised.

Failing to get behind the Fight for 15 campaign, and actual, successful union mass mobilization which is something of a rarity in the US, was an entirely unforced error on Candidate Clinton's part. Something was fundamentally wrong about team Clinton's picture of the world if they thought that was good policy or good optics.

Now, during the campaign it is impolitic to point this out, because the alternative was a talking tire fire.

But as part of the post-mortem unforced errors like that have to be owned up to. That is the only way to improve.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 08:09:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
NOT supporting that campaign until the very end is also a fact that allows drawing conclusions about the agenda being pursued and how much the interests of actual working people figured in the Clinton campaign strategy. The conclusion: not much.


"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sat Feb 4th, 2017 at 07:25:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There is surely enough hyperbole on both sides of this issue.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 06:09:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Then, as the cherry on top, in a discussion about how a portion of "the left" helped Republicans win the election by joining them in attacking Democrats, you proceed to attack Democrats then rationalize the behavior.

Point of order: People doing the "Bernie would have won" skit after the election cannot be the cause of losing the election. Cause has to predate effect.

I personally don't think it's a particularly productive activity, given that neither Sanders nor Clinton will run again (Sanders is too old, and Clinton has lost for the second time in a row). But as defeat post-mortems go it's not out of bounds. Not very persuasive unless it comes with some actual data behind it, but not a priori out of bounds either.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 08:09:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
[ET Moderation Technology™]

It looks like this debate is a continuation of an earlier intense discussion that I at least have missed. Right now it's already pretty heated and personally directed - and I'll remind folks just once this not the way how it's done here. If people wish to continue this thread, take a deep breath or walk the dog first and at minimum be aware that energy is much better spent differently.

If the tone of this particular debate does not improve, comments will likely be shut down.

by Bjinse on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 12:43:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Do not tell me what I appear to think.
That is rich, considering that is exactly what you have been doing to those who disagree with you on this issue, and mostly with invective and dismissal instead of reasoned counter argument.

Call me contentious if you will, but I will not be shouted down for stating my understanding of the situation.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 02:48:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Is this the comment you claimed in personal message was not aimed at me?  If so, you should clarify that here. I don't appreciate being accused of having a history of misrepresenting what others think with dismissal, invective, and lack of reasoned arguments.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes
by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 10:34:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, Izzy, this was the comment I though was by Drew. I apologize to you both for that mis-take.


"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 06:11:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
To be clear, it was your first comment on this post, beginning with: "Do not tell me what I appear to think. You're wrong about what I think, just as you're wrong about the politics of this country." And, in fairness, I have to come to some conclusion of what you think from the words you use and the view you express. That is what an attempt at understanding looks like. From prior private discussions I have taken that you don't share my concern for the economic impact of trade policies on those who are un or under employed as a result. I have tried to make the point that economics is fundamental and that failing to address negative economic impacts will, in time, undermine all the social issue progress we have made. That is exactly what I now see happening.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 06:22:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A lot of people are about to get a brutal wake-up. Careful what you ask for! Even more so about who you vote for. Trump's base tops out around 40% at best. And that was when he was only a promise of 'taking the country back'. I have seen reports that Tom Cotton, R. Senator of Arkansas who ran with Koch money on a tea party platform, is trying to avoid constituents angry about cuts to the ACA and SS he is supporting. '18 could be a bigger wave election than was '06. And the Trump Administration is only two weeks old. How can at least half of those who voted for him not be dismayed by his grotesque performance at the recent prayer breakfast. He IS a walking, talking mockery of everything they profess to hold dear. Pray tell!

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 05:10:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
At the CNN exit poll it was 36%.

Exit Polls 2016

Both favorable
2%
Only Clinton favorable
41%
Only Trump favorable
36%
Both unfavorable
18%

The last group brokee for Trump. Still, they don't like him.

41% supported a wall to Mexico. 25% supported deportations of illegal immigrants working in the US vs 70% for offered legal status.

So, yes. If the Democrats play their cards right there will be anger that can be used.

by fjallstrom on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 05:35:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Given that the Dems are still controlled by the DLC and will keep rolling over; that the part of the media not wholly owned by Rethugs will allow itself to keep being played by them; and that the bulk of the population has such poor reasoning skills it couldn't pour piss out of a boot with the instructions wriitten on the heel, I'm not so optimistic.
by rifek on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 09:39:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thanks, Drew.  I share your anger. I'm completely enraged by this, but you know, I was already aware there were a ton of shitty right-wing voters who would vote for any Republican, and I was also aware there would be dormant racist voters who crawled out of the woodwork because they had their man, but I wasn't quite aware of how fucking ugly and moronic a big chunk of the left was going to be.  And I would think that after a catastrophe of this magnitude, maybe the ones who spend all their time attacking Democrats would stfu and do a little navel-gazing of their own, but apparently not.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes
by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 10:02:52 AM EST
I'm especially enjoying the  people - predominately old white guys - talking about how this is fine, because he'll destroy the system and then the revolution of <insert favoured hobby horse here> can happen.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 10:35:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Nach Trump wir.

Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler
by generic on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 10:45:15 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Right.  The "If he just destroys the system, then people will finally realize that (whatever dumb ideology I subscribe to that doesn't involve boring, plodding implementation of worthwhile policy) isn't stupid and the glorious revolution will be on" types.  As a few tens of thousands die from losing their health care each year.

Or, my personal favorite, the deluded idiots -- many on our side of the aisle -- who still think there's some kind of Earth-2 Trump who's going to hammer The BankersTM rather than give them tax cuts and gut the regulatory regime and save us from Earth-2 Hillary, who's...I don't know, apparently giving handies to Lloyd Blankfein.

St Ralph Nader's babbling about Trump and single-payer health care being the prime example.

It's impressive.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 12:46:07 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The longer it takes for the underlying problems to be addressed the worse each rightward swing of the pendulum will become. If this isn't bad enough, just wait. It will not be sufficient to elect another Obama, as much of a relief as that would be - for so long as it lasts.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 03:30:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Privilege is believing politics happens to other people.

I have to skip over most leftist fb commentary from guys I don't know on fb - all those well honed political views are just status displays and it uncomfortably reminds me of my of myself in my early to mid 20s.

you are the media you consume.

by MillMan (millguy at gmail) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 02:40:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Forgive yourself -- when we're young it's normal to be idealistic and easy to believe these problems, that are so obvious and simple-seeming, can be fixed if enough people just say it loud enough. Especially if we're living in areas where we're not really witnessing the extremes of the process.  

We took a hit on the youth vote this election cycle, but I don't really blame the young people for that, I blame the old fucks who claimed to have all the answers and told them the only reason things were bad was some fairy-tale version of politics where the problems were caused by some ruling elite in a smoke filled room deciding on coronations.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 04:41:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Frank - what exactly is your problem with this comment?

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes
by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 10:30:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
None.  Since the demise of Tribex it is v. easy to mis-rate a comment by pressing page down or down arrow after you have clicked on 4.  My apologies.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 10:35:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah, thanks for the explanation.  I was unaware of the glitch and was puzzling over which part offended you.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes
by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 12:05:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Good to see you posting again, Izzy.
by Bjinse on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 08:40:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Hi Izzy, good to see you back.
How have you been?
by Bernard on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 08:42:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thanks.  Not sure I know how to answer that. I've been... ok?  If you can call it ok that I'm seething with rage and am sickened by the human race

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes
by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 09:28:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Don't forget that most of the human race don't support Trump and more and more are looking for ways to oppose him.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 10:13:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If you think I "forgot" that, you're seriously misreading the situation.  In fact, it is the very thing that's enraging me. That fact that the majority of people COULD HAVE banded together and stopped this but didn't, is the worst part of the whole thing.

The fact that a whole bunch of people who claim to be my allies devoted a lot of time and effort into tearing down the other candidate and actively silenced anyone trying to make the case for her so that stupid people never heard the message, the fact that they actively bullied people and are now actively misrepresenting the situation, insisting on dominating the narrative, a calling for idiotic prescriptions to "fix" the problem that they themselves have been busy creating is why I'm seething.

Reminding me that they don't support the monster they helped elect is no comfort whatsoever.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 10:55:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Perhaps not even half of the US electorate. Unfortunately, even if that is the case, they didn't show up at the polls in Nov. '16. True believers will remain fervent, but a large portion of the swing voters who supported Trump might just well have a different response in '18 and '20.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 05:58:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
We certainly will not have a different outcome if a significant portion of white progressives keep siding with Republicans as identifying Democrats as the problem and attacking them as enemies instead of standing with them as allies.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes
by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 10:29:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Good counterpoint to your previous diary, Drew.

Keep that anger burning, it looks like we're gonna need every bit of that fire for the coming year(s). Stay angry, and stay focussed.

Also this:

by Bjinse on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 02:52:36 PM EST
by epochepoque on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 09:49:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
lol - I posted that on my facebook a couple days ago. Clearly, I need a sword

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes
by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 09:55:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Trial Balloon for a Coup? - Yonatan Zunger
It wouldn't surprise me if the goal is to create "resistance fatigue," to get Americans to the point where they're more likely to say "Oh, another protest? Don't you guys ever stop?" relatively quickly.

... Note also the most frightening escalation last night was that the DHS made it fairly clear that they did not feel bound to obey any court orders.

...That is to say, the administration is testing the extent to which the DHS (and other executive agencies) can act and ignore orders from the other branches of government. This is as serious as it can possibly get: all of the arguments about whether order X or Y is unconstitutional mean nothing if elements of the government are executing them and the courts are being ignored. ...

  1. Trump was, indeed, perfectly honest during the campaign; he intends to do everything he said, and more. This should not be reassuring to you.
  2. The regime's main organizational goal right now is to transfer all effective power to a tight inner circle, eliminating any possible checks from either the Federal bureaucracy, Congress, or the Courts. Departments are being reorganized or purged to effect this.
  3. The inner circle is actively probing the means by which they can seize unchallenged power; yesterday's moves should be read as the first part of that.
  4. The aims of crushing various groups -- Muslims, Latinos, the black and trans communities, academics, the press -- are very much primary aims of the regime, and are likely to be acted on with much greater speed than was earlier suspected. The secondary aim of personal enrichment is also very much in play, and clever people will find ways to play these two goals off each other.


Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 10:46:12 PM EST
Note that the executive order was written and implemented in an absolutely amateurish way. They're like children playing their new toys which means they will only get better at pulling the levers of power. Their incompetence will only protect us for a while.

The suppression of various social sectors will happen mostly as a point of provocation to engender even greater division and find more supposed boogey men for the base. It has worked so far.

Schengen is toast!

by epochepoque on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 10:52:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What "Things Going Wrong" Can Look Like - Yonatan Zunger
I'm reading this as "1933 playbook continues on schedule, pace slightly higher than last time: something between maybe 1.2x and 2x, but without the possibility of a major land war to show up on the horizon."
I don't know how likely this is but yes it's at least orange alert.

A Clarifying Moment in American History - Eliot A. Cohen - Atlantic

Precisely because the problem is one of temperament and character, it will not get better. It will get worse, as power intoxicates Trump and those around him. It will probably end in calamity--substantial domestic protest and violence, a breakdown of international economic relationships, the collapse of major alliances, or perhaps one or more new wars (even with China) on top of the ones we already have. It will not be surprising in the slightest if his term ends not in four or in eight years, but sooner, with impeachment or removal under the 25th Amendment. The sooner Americans get used to these likelihoods, the better. ...

For the community of conservative thinkers and experts, and more importantly, conservative politicians, this is a testing time. Either you stand up for your principles and for what you know is decent behavior, or you go down, if not now, then years from now, as a coward or opportunist. Your reputation will never recover, nor should it.

... The biggest split will be between those who draw a line and the power-sick ... [who] fatally compromise their values.

... In the end, however, he will fail. He will fail because however shrewd his tactics are, his strategy is terrible--The New York Times, the CIA, Mexican Americans, and all the others he has attacked are not going away. With every act he makes new enemies for himself and strengthens their commitment; he has his followers, but he gains no new friends. ... He will fail most of all because at the end of the day most Americans, including most of those who voted for him, are decent people who have no desire to live in an American version of Tayyip Erdogan's Turkey, or Viktor Orban's Hungary, or Vladimir Putin's Russia.

I'm not that sure. Trump was explicitly elected to break things. Quite a lot of people think the authoritarian axis has the right idea. We'll see but the damage will definitely outlast its creators.

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 11:14:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Opposition Is Born | Jacobin -
What is the first thing fascists or Nazis do when they come into power, the very first thing? They destroy the Left.

Before they go after the Jews, as in Germany, before they go after the liberals and anyone who is not a fascist, before they go after national minorities, they arrest, imprison, torture, and murder the communists, the socialists, and the trade unions. Because they know that in order to pursue their maximal agenda, they need to drain the field of all opposition.

Trump hasn't done that; in fact, he's done just the opposite.

Now you could say that the reason Trump hasn't done that is that there is no real left to do it to. Trump thinks he can do what he's doing now because no one will stop him. I actually think there is something to that argument. And one could see how, from the point of view of a conservative or Republican activist, the last forty years would suggest that you have little to worry about from the left: not from the activist left and certainly not from the Democrats. I think the facts on the ground with regard to the Left has begun to change, slowly, but knowledge of the world is path dependent, and changes like this take a long time to register, particularly when you're in an ideological bubble. Look how long it took Democrats and the Left to realize that Reagan was for real and here to stay.

That is why I don't buy the notion that somehow yesterday's events, with all the opposition at the airports and the imposition of a stay, was part of a grand plan. I think they have no idea what they might be facing from the left. And let's be honest: neither do we.

Whatever the case may be, the point is this: If Trump is a fascist -- I'm dubious, as many of you know -- he may be the most backasswards fascist we've ever seen. Having seized control of the state, he doesn't destroy his opposition in order to pursue his maximal agenda. Instead, he creates an opposition -- what may be shaping up as the largest mass movement this country has seen in fifty years -- by pursuing his maximal agenda first.


For the moment I tend to agree. Unless there follows a very fast and thorough trashing of the protest movement the Trumpkins are weakened by this. Of course the situation remains rather fluid.

Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler
by generic on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 11:47:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Another one in the overreach not plan column:

LENIN'S TOMB: Under the sign of Saturn, a movement is born. -

Of course, the effect of the Trump victory can be seen in the fact that some law enforcement officers ignored the ruling and acted on what they interpreted as the effect of Trump's executive order anyway. The re-deployment of legal/police networks, will rely on key actors willing to resist orders from the courts, or at least passively circumvent them. Nonetheless, the attempted blitzkrieg in the apparatuses hasn't stopped bourgeois legality from being effective yet. The Department of Homeland Security has indicated that it will comply with the court's ruling.

This indicates the problem with Trump trying to exacerbate fissures in the state too quickly. He has over-reached. It is not he, but his opposition who now seem most able to exploit these fissures. He also over-reaches in continuing his war with the capitalist media, which are sources of powerful institutional legitimacy, closely looped into the reproduction of the state. (Indeed, following Althusser, we should just say that media apparatuses are state apparatuses.) He behaves as if he has an alternative source of political authority outside the state, an alternative ideological legitimacy capable of rivalling CNN and the New York Times. He doesn't. He is premature in that respect.



Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler
by generic on Mon Jan 30th, 2017 at 11:54:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And one in the plan column but with very good short term advice:

The Method to Trump and Bannon's "Madness" | Ian Welsh -

The current focus on Bannon might bear fruit. He and Kushner are the most competent people Trump listens to, and if a wedge can be driven between them, using Trump's ego "President Bannon" then perhaps Bannon's power can be reduced or he can even be gotten rid of. Kushner, as the son-in-law, is probably not someone who can be peeled off. Bannon might be.

Bottom line: if you are a civil service member who can expect to not be let go soon anyway, you should keep your head down and work from within. If you are going to be let go of anyway (as with the acting Attorney General who defied Trump),  you might as well go out with a bang.

One minor positive effect of real existing president Trump is that the focus has moved away from supposed Russian meddling to the fascist running his campaign.

Nur der Euro bleibt stehen - von Berlin bis Athen - Georg Kreisler

by generic on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 10:39:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And that his Supreme Court nominee, as a student at a Jesuit high school, founded a group called 'Fascists Forever' as a protest against 'liberal' teachers.

If past is prologue....


"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 06:07:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I just saw this elsewhere and posted it in the Salon as well.
by Zwackus on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 01:28:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Even David Frum is getting in on the action, though his piece has all the signs of having been written a few weeks ago, for the print edition.

How to build an Autocracy

Skip the gag-inducing first couple of paragraphs, and it gets good.

Donald Trump will not set out to build an authoritarian state. His immediate priority seems likely to be to use the presidency to enrich himself. But as he does so, he will need to protect himself from legal risk. Being Trump, he will also inevitably wish to inflict payback on his critics. Construction of an apparatus of impunity and revenge will begin haphazardly and opportunistically. But it will accelerate. It will have to.

If Congress is quiescent, what can Trump do? A better question, perhaps, is what can't he do?

Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House, who often articulates Trumpist ideas more candidly than Trump himself might think prudent, offered a sharp lesson in how difficult it will be to enforce laws against an uncooperative president. During a radio roundtable in December, on the topic of whether it would violate anti-nepotism laws to bring Trump's daughter and son-in-law onto the White House staff, Gingrich said: The president "has, frankly, the power of the pardon. It is a totally open power, and he could simply say, `Look, I want them to be my advisers. I pardon them if anybody finds them to have behaved against the rules. Period.' And technically, under the Constitution, he has that level of authority."

That statement is true, and it points to a deeper truth: The United States may be a nation of laws, but the proper functioning of the law depends upon the competence and integrity of those charged with executing it. A president determined to thwart the law in order to protect himself and those in his circle has many means to do so.

by Zwackus on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 06:07:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A couple of thinkgs leapt out at me.

"Civil unrest will not be a problem for the Trump presidency. It will be a resource. Trump will likely want not to repress it, but to publicize it--and the conservative entertainment-outrage complex will eagerly assist him. Immigration protesters marching with Mexican flags; Black Lives Matter demonstrators bearing antipolice slogans--these are the images of the opposition that Trump will wish his supporters to see. The more offensively the protesters behave, the more pleased Trump will be."

In an online article for The New York Review of Books, the Russian-born journalist Masha Gessen brilliantly noted a commonality between Donald Trump and the man Trump admires so much, Vladimir Putin. "Lying is the message," she wrote. "It's not just that both Putin and Trump lie, it is that they lie in the same way and for the same purpose: blatantly, to assert power over truth itself."

Gil Scott Heron was wrong; the revolution was televised. It's just that it's not the revolution we were expecting. I remember a communist boasting to me that the Constitution of the USSR was far more open and democratic than that of the US, what he failed to note was that you can have the most rigorous systems of over-sight in the world, but if there is no will to enforce the rules or hold people to account, then it's meaningless.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 04:09:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But where is the Geez? And Mig?

Humans are incapable of solving the problems they create.
by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 05:58:28 AM EST


Humans are incapable of solving the problems they create.
by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 06:15:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Get ready for a 9/11 style event, staged or otherwise. What was that event ... Reichstag fire?

  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reichstag_fire



Humans are incapable of solving the problems they create.

by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 04:38:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I supported Sanders until AFTER the convention. I thought critics such as Michael Moore and others were right that Clinton would be vulnerable to attack by Trump and would just be a continuation of the status quo politics we had during the Obama Administration. By September I saw that I had no choice but to support Clinton and hope for the best.

I felt and still feel that we HAVE to address the basic problems affecting the US electorate and that entails taking on the power of the very wealthy. I grant that not having a specter of Bolshevism makes this more difficult than it was for FDR, but, now, just perhaps, having on vivid and continual display the results of enabling run-amok right wing populism in a presidential race will, over the next several months, create a clear majority for real change.

Given the inability and lack of real intent on the part of Trump to deal seriously and effectively with the problems affecting most of the electorate, disillusionment amongst many of his supporters will reduce his support. This is already starting. Demographics will continue to favor progressive attitudes as more of Trump's base is dying every day.

And having real, clear progressive goals will be essential to attract so many of the millennials who did not engage in '16. Democratic Party neoliberalism is well past its sell by date. We will never really know how well Sanders might have done had he had the opportunity. But a presidential candidate better than Clinton who addresses the need for change should have the wind at their back in '20.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 04:11:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
New leader orders Justice to 'do our sworn duty'

cting Attorney General Dana Boente is ordering the Justice Department to "do our sworn duty" and defend President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration and refugees.

Boente was named to the job Monday night after Trump fired Sally Yates, a Democratic appointee who had publicly questioned the constitutionality of the executive order and directed Justice Department attorneys not to defend it in court. Yates said she was not convinced it was lawful or consistent with the agency's obligation "to stand for what is right."

Longtime federal prosecutor Boente was quickly named as Yates' replacement and was sworn in privately late Monday.

by Zwackus on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 06:00:06 AM EST
I would rather not read this kind of language at ET. It conveys a sense of frustration and intolerance that I regret. And on which far right types certainly rejoice.

You might find me At The Edge Of Time.
by Luis de Sousa (luis[dot]a[dot]de[dot]sousa[at]gmail[dot]com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 01:40:06 PM EST
There's a guy sitting at the emperor's left hand who openly consorts with actual heiling Nazis, and a guy sitting at his right hand who wants to turn the US into Saudi Arabia with a Baptist voiceover.

Intolerance and anger are entirely appropriate responses to those facts.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue Jan 31st, 2017 at 11:44:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Then click the next diary.  

But don't speak on what the far-right types here rejoice at, because we know them better than you.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 01:00:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Just politely pointing out that even if Luis is young enough to have avoided them, Portugal has known fascism in o not so distant past: they do remember.
by Bernard on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 10:09:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You add arrogance to bad language. What do you exactly intend to achieve that way?

I see the hatred on the other side. I do not wish to be like them.  

You might find me At The Edge Of Time.

by Luis de Sousa (luis[dot]a[dot]de[dot]sousa[at]gmail[dot]com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 02:31:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I haven't written on Trump since his election, and it is not out of shame that I called it wrong.  It is simply that I don't know what to say that has not already been said by those closer to the action. The sense of anger and frustration and grief coming from every political activist in the US that I know is palpable and deep. I feel I am almost intruding on private grief if I comment seriously or engaging in Schadenfreude if I seek to make light of it. The parallels with the 1930's which are being drawn don't seem over-blown.

I think we can forgive some intemperate language here; the consequences for all could be very real, and political activism isn't all about being cool and analytical and detached. When the time comes, a comprehensive political programme will be drawn up to right some of these wrongs in 2018 and 2020. Right now it is a time for anger.  Let it flow.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 07:59:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It is one thing to be angry, another to be arrogant and unbred.

You might find me At The Edge Of Time.
by Luis de Sousa (luis[dot]a[dot]de[dot]sousa[at]gmail[dot]com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 02:35:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
...  and unbred.

And here I thought it was a comment regarding one's gene pool and DNA base pairs.  I checked the definition at http://www.dictionary.com/ .  Carry on ... cream pie, anyone?

Humans are incapable of solving the problems they create.

by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 04:44:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Louis, I can assure you that that is NOT the case with Drew, whatever his behavior. As Johnny Cash wrote, "Momma tried, momma tried." Daddy too! And he is very well educated. Even if I don't always agree with him. I blame football and his addiction to hating opponents. :-)

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 04:58:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Er, ARG, where do you think the football and hating opponents came from?

You forget my dad was at FSU in the early-'70s, when it was (and still is!) The Berkeley of the South.TM ;)

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Sat Feb 4th, 2017 at 12:37:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It is one thing to be angry, another to be arrogant and unbred.

"Unbred," from the guy who tried to get after me years back for having a "girl's name".  That's pretty rich.

Arrogant, I'll grant you though.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Sat Feb 4th, 2017 at 12:35:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Comments paused until tomorrow.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Feb 1st, 2017 at 05:06:04 PM EST
Comments re-enabled after a 24 hr. cooling off period.  Please keep it civil and respect the people you disagree with...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 02:38:58 PM EST
I suppose the more general point is that the Dem Party failed to re-unite all the disparate elements of the Obama Coalition after a competitive primary with the result that turn-out was low. There were real policy differences as well as personality factors in all of this, and as always, there is plenty of room for debate as to where the preponderant blame should lie.

My sadness is that those differences and demotivating factors could not be overcome even in the face of an unprecedentedly divisive campaign by Trump. Hopefully the Dem party will find candidates, policies and organisational capabilities to enable them to do so in 2018 and 2020. With luck, the incompetence of most Trump officials will limit the damage they can do before their fast-track authority to do trade deals runs out in mid 2018 and the Mid terms will further reduce their scope for mischief.

I would be concerned, however, that the US will be embroiled in at least one major war by then.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 02:45:19 PM EST
Turnout was not low.  Please quit spreading misinformation.

Clinton had the second highest vote count in our history.  She may have exceeded Obama had we not allowed widespread voter suppression to go unchecked.  The voting rights act was gutted in 2013 and the estimates of how much impact that had vary, but it's safe to say it most likely impacted the outcome with the razor thin margins that tipped the electoral college. Only 77k spread across three states with active suppression in the cities of those states.

If you care about solving actual problems, the don't peddle narratives that the actual facts contradict.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 10:25:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In the last three Presidential elections, voter turnout has gone down from 57.1% to 54.9% to 54.6% of the voting age population, so please don't make emotive accusations that I am spreading misinformation.

Yes Hillary won the popular vote by a record margin for someone who lost the electoral college, yes the overall voting age population has been rising, and yes voter suppression has been rampant - I know all that and made no comment contradicting it. But are you saying that a little more unity amongst the Obama coalition wouldn't have tipped her over the edge particularly if she had focused more on her must win battleground states?  Given Trump's campaign style I was amazed she didn't do better amongst women and minorities in particular.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Feb 2nd, 2017 at 10:52:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
https:/fivethirtyeight.com/features/no-voter-turnout-wasnt-way-down-from-2012

No, Voter Turnout Wasn't Low

Stories are still circulating a week after the election that turnout fell sharply from 2012. That's almost certainly not true. The confusion is the result of news outlets trying to pin down voter turnout figures quickly in a system that doesn't count millions of votes until weeks after the election.

So yes, if we're discussing what happened to lose an election in which Clinton, while battling against sexism, interference from hostile hackers, unprecedented actions by a rogue arm of the FBI, unprecedented media coverage of false attacks by her opponents and almost no coverage of actual policy, and historic assaults on voting rights, and she loses by a razor thin margin in an election where she  increased voter turnout overall and held the percentage of the eligible voters percentage steady, then I say "low turnout" is a bad answer.  

It obscures what happened -- it excuses the racism, the bad actors, and the online bullying of her supporters and implies she wasn't inspiring and lays all the blame on the candidate. It does nothing to unify the Obama coalition because it excuses the ACTIVE suppression of her message that a certain segment of the left indulged themselves in.  

We didn't lose because politically informed citizens rejected her -- the bases of both parties turned out.  
We lost because the message of her plans and accomplishments did not reach low-information voters in the swing states and we took a hit on the youth vote across all demographics.  We lost because the Republicans tell the WWC that Democrats are the enemy and that their problems stem from immigrants and people of color.  We lost because a big chunk of the WWC left said the same thing in softer terms. We lost because the marginalized people who actually make up the democratic base were actively bullied and blocked from telling their side of the story.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 12:47:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm afraid there is only so much of your whiney assed excuses I can take. My parents had to spend the rest of their lives living down the shame that their country had allowed Hitler get into power - and they had some real excuses - despite the fact that he never got more than 43.9% of the vote, even after a sustained compaign of violence against his opponents.  

The bottom line is that you fucked up. You let some back country rubes defeat you even though they didn't have a credible candidate, a GOTV operation, a huuuge advertising budget or the endorsement of a single major newspaper.  Your candidate sucked.  She campaigned in the wrong places and on the wrong issues and came to be seen as the creature of the establishment she had become.

And now you have the temerity to come to the European Tribune and lecture its denizens on your obviously superior intelligence and wonderful political skills. Thanks for that.  We have plenty of problems of our own and it doesn't look like your President is going to help us much.  You deal with your problems.  We'll deal with ours. I've tried to give you some latitude but you seem to think that insulting everyone here with your straw men arguments is deserving of some greater respect.  I beg to differ.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 02:47:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I fucked up?  You do realize Hitler was elected because the far left refused to present a united front with the center left, right?  and apparently no lessons were learned from that.  

The democratic base here is largely made up of people of color.  Your disdain for their votes or opinions, and your refusal to stand with them as allies when they outvoted you, is duly noted.

I would have supported either candidate in the general election against electing a fascist and handing the power of all three branches of government to the party that is causing all the problems you're railing about.  Evidently taking a clear stand against fascism and asking for unity makes me a whiny ass making excuses.

And once the primary was over, the people who support the democrats were actively bullied into silence by extremists on both the left and right.  We had a simple choice to make and a bunch of faux revolutionaries actively dominated the online discourse.

And, Frank?  Fuck you for telling me I have "temerity" for posting here.  I helped build this fucking blog, which for awhile was a vibrant community, till relentless bitter nasty male voices wore everyone down and ran them off. Ever wonder why all the women left here?  You guys clearly have zero tolerance for any view other than your own and systematically drum out everyone who has a different view. Now you're just openly admitting you don't understand the concept of allies and frame every dissenting opinion as the enemy.

Maybe one day the world will run on who makes the most pompous argument or who repeats it with enough fervor instead of actual voting and the powers that be will consult you all and you can tell them your well thought-out opinions on how you think the world SHOULD be run. Until then, enjoy your little lefty circle jerk. Come the glorious revolution and all that!


Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 10:07:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You do realize Hitler was elected because the far left refused to present a united front with the center left, right?
It would, of course, be equally true to say that the SPD refused to present a united front with the communists. To the point of sending their party militia to break communist legs on occasion. Those two factions were roughly equally matched in numbers (but drew from very different demographics), so it is a case of victor's history for the SPD to claim that they were the natural party of government and the communists were entirely at fault for the failure to form that coalition.

And once the primary was over, the people who support the democrats were actively bullied into silence by extremists on both the left and right.
A lot of the Clinton campaign seemed to think the primaries were over about two months before the actual convention, and were not shy about employing quite vicious silencing tactics. Up to and including trying to get journalists fired for saying nice things about Sanders. Not for saying nasty things about Clinton, which would have been understandable, but for saying nice things about Sanders. Before the convention. That this would engender some lasting bitterness should reasonably have been predicted. It may be the correct move to stand with the people who tried to get you fired in opposition to whatever slithers out of the Republican Party, but in practice it's a hard sell.

We had a simple choice to make and a bunch of faux revolutionaries actively dominated the online discourse.
I have not seen any colorable estimate that puts those people at above ten per cent of the Democratic-leaning community. It does not seem plausible to me that such a small constituency, with no money, no full-time professional shills, no tame newsies, and no support from friendly government officials, would be able to "actively dominate" the commanding heights of the media landscape. But if you have better data on the size, resources and impact of that constituency, then I'd be happy to read it.

However I'm not interested in opinion pieces pointing out that those people are wankers. I already know that, the question is whether they're a plausible explanation for why the Dems lost the election. And their perfidy, however real, is beside that point.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 11:19:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
[ET Moderation Technology™]

And that's quite enough. Comments closed. I hope everyone did not enjoy this.

I'm a Gnome now, so I get to have the last word:


by Bjinse on Sat Feb 4th, 2017 at 10:00:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You lost because the DNC collaborates with - and is a tool of - the Capitalist Party, which has been promoting economic fascism and preventing progressive change in countries around the world for at least a century now.

The DNC has always been good at presenting the appearance of token progress while standing on its own feet to make sure as little progress as possible happens.

Why do you think Clinton worked so hard to support NAFTA? Why do you think Obama spent all his time "reaching across the aisle" and "negotiating'?

Why does the Democratic Party feel such a deep need to do this, while the Republicans treat power as an excuse to ignore local and global opposition?

And as for identity politics - nope.

Identity politics is the convenient misdirection that keeps the left permanently distracted from the burning core of barbaric economic injustice that underpins politics and business in the US. Nothing will really change - including deep progress on social justice and opportunity - until that injustice ends.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Fri Feb 3rd, 2017 at 06:31:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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