Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
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.

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.

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.

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?

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.

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 ]

Occasional Series