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DNC and Podesta emails leak: blaming Vladimir Putin

Dems became the party of corruption: the organization did conspire against Sanders

Who are those "experts" who tell us those were Russians? Are those the same "experts" who found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq? Or the same who claim that Hillary bathroom email server was never breached?

“The same people on the Clinton team who made enormous efforts to claim her private email server—which operated unencrypted over the Internet for three months, including during trips to China and Russia, and which contained top-secret national-security data—was not hacked by the Russians now are certain that the DNC server was hacked by the Russians” http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/unpacking-the-dnc-emails/

News US Presidential Elections of 2016 Recommended Links  Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Questions about Huma Abedin email forwarding Hillary Clinton email scandal Obama: a yet another Neocon
Hillary Clinton email scandal Demonization of Putin Who hacked whom propaganda game Swiftboating Trump: Khan gambit against Trump at the Democratic Convention Do the US intelligence agencies attempt to influence the US Presidential elections ? Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Deception as an art form
Media-Military-Industrial Complex Corporatist Corruption: Systemic Fraud under Clinton-Bush-Obama Regime Bill Clinton Is Hillary Clinton a toxic manager? Hillary Clinton defense of the middle aged rapist of a 12 years old girl Robert Rubin, the man who helped to convert the USA into banana republic Madeleine Albright
Clinton Cash The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich Crisis of Character A White House Secret Service Officer Discloses His Firsthand Experience with Hillary, Bill, and How They O Hillary the Other Woman Dolly Kyle Amazon.com Books The Clintons' War on Women Roger Stone, Robert Morrow Amazon.com Books Bill Clinton New Gilded Age President Patrick J. Maney 9780700621941 Amazon.com Books The Secret Life of Bill Clinton The Unreported Stories Ambrose Evans-Pritchard  Amazon.com Books Partners in Crime The Clintons' Scheme to Monetize the White House for Personal Profit Jerome Corsi  Amazon
Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism  Pathological lying Female Sociopaths American Exceptionalism Lawrence Summers Sandy Weill: the banker who bought Bill Clinton Financial Sector Induced Systemic Instability of Economy
Diplomacy by deception Corruption of Regulators The Deep State Machiavellism Noble Lie Hillary role in cover up of Bill Clinton sexapades Nation under attack meme
Neocolonialism as Financial Imperialism  Neocons Credibility Scam Leo Strauss and the Neocons Predator state The Iron Law of Oligarchy Elite [Dominance] Theory And the Revolt of the Elite  

Introduction

These people have no shame. Vote Trump!

USMarines, Guardian Jun 25, 2016

I didn’t have a conspiracy with that woman, Debbie Wasserman Schultz.  HRC

Today, while reading Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables ,
 I unexpectedly came across a passage which fittingly describes the DNC:

They are practiced politicians, every man of them, and skilled to adjust those
 preliminary measures which steal from the people, without its knowledge,
the power of choosing its own rulers…This little knot of subtle schemers
will control the convention, and, through it, dictate to the party.

Roland , July 28, 2016 at 7:39 am

Wikileaks proved beyond reasonable doubt that the Democratic National Committee under Debbie Wasserman Schultz, in fact, served as the Hillary Clinton Coronation Committee, operating, step by step, to ensure that the front-runner would become the party’s nominee. There nothing democratic about National Democratic Committee. It is an elitarian structure dominated by neoliberals (Clinton wing of the party), which have nothing to do with democracy, but a lot with Wall Street domination of the political life in the country.   They also served as a powerful catalyst of rising far right nationalism.  Essentially Bill Clinton created Trump.

But instantly after the revelations neocon propaganda machine was put in overdrive to fed the US lemmings (aka voters)  that the diabolical Russian hackers were behind the DNC hack. In other words this Rove-style plot try to brainwash the public that what the DNC actually did was not reprehensible, but its exposure was:

For Dem [media] tycoons, it’s habit. They stand behind Hill for Imperial hegemony and Full Spectrum Dominance wherever money can be extorted, always the case in our squalid, half-assed military debacles. They get that looting nations and winning wars are not the same, and only one of them matters. For Repub Capos it’s a stickier wicket but not much. For a Conservative to even consider backing a Democrat, and a Clinton at that, would have been unthinkable last May, but since no Republicans actually are conservative, they figure why cling to yesterday, and they go with their lack of principles. What horrifies them in Trump is not his racism, sexism, or crudity: those are their hole cards, beloved of their Redneck Division. What actually outrages them is that in knocking imperialism, policing the world and puppeteering NATO and Japan, in shrinking empire and friending Russia, he threatens directly the War Machine and its limitless sugar tit from Congress.

Despite all this "Russians are coming" smoke screen and attempt to divert attention on Russia that Clinton campaign tried to propagate via subservant MSM, the truth is that the Democratic National Committee under its Obama-installed leader Wasserman-Schultz (and that means with direct blessing of the Obama, who put his political weight behind Hillary and shielded Hillary from criminal prosecution) had from day one schemed against other primary candidates and first of all Bernie Sanders to get Clinton elected. Welcome to the USSR comrades: Politburo knows everything and will decide what is best for you. You need just relax and vote as they say.  Everything will be fine (100-Page Report Shows Staggering Evidence of Election Fraud in Democratic Primary Cosmoso)

A recent report from Election Justice USA shows as many as 184 delegates were stolen from Bernie Sanders due to election fraud in the Democratic Primary

While it’s unclear whether the super delegates would have voted for Sanders, the EJUSA report does make one thing clear: Bernie Sanders won the majority of pledged delegates in the Democratic Primary at 2030 to Hillary Clinton’s 2021.

These numbers were arrived at by EJUSA’s intensive research and verification into claims of voter suppression, unintended party affiliation changes, heavy voter purging, and registrations never being honored by the Board of Elections in various counties throughout the U.S. during the Democratic Primary. In some cases, signatures were even forged on party affiliation documents and evidence of computer hacking being involved has come to light.

The fact that the emails exposed a coordinated effort to rob Bernie (which is a criminal offence in any state that called itself democratic as it interfere with the will of the people) was swiped under the carpet.  The DNC emails released by WikiLeaks showed that the Democratic National Committee has been implementing a coordinated multi-staged plan to undermine Bernie Sanders’ campaign. It also reveled an attempt to control media coverage (so that it benefitted Hillary) and the neoliberal MSM collusion with the DNC. It is now clear that the democratic presidential primary was rigged from the start and Hillary is an illegitimate candidate.

If nothing else, the crooked primaries process revealed just how much the DNC has become a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Clinton family, that can't even maintain the pretense of neutrality or impartiality--as the DNC's charter requires. And it's also exposed just how much the Fourth Estate has abandoned even the pretense of being the public's watch-dogs for the role of being the Clinton's lapdogs -- fitting classic definition of the "courtier press".  Now they are shamelessly preying on peoples' lack of understanding of computers trying to hide their criminal behaviour by "Putin did it" smoke screen.  They are also shamelessly preying on naive peoples' trust in experts, which has serious downstream effects when these "experts" are debunked. The way that the Russia-Trump storyline has been pounded into our consciousness by the media and the Democratic Party, including at the convention in prime time, is a calculated effort to take our eye off the ball and is a classic “shoot the messenger” tactic.

Clinton is trying to market herself as the Serious/Safe candidate, but her campaign is acting completely hysterical. Intead of welcoming transparency and investigating corrupt DNC officials involved in the plot against Sanders, they try to "kill the messenger" trick. This whole Putin-hack thing if a pure anti-Russian hysteria. There is no proof that Russia or Russian hackers were involved.  And if hack was really sophisticated there will be no proof as after certain amount of time evidence (connection logs on routers and such) disappeared.  NSA might still have something but they typically do not revel what they know.

\Instead this is another demonstration of how corrupt Hillary is as a politician. Like mafia boss she will stop at nothing at achieving her goals -- in this case the goal is to become the President of the USA. And this is not the first instance of "Hillary" poisonous  effect on anything she touches. Let's remember that she went into State Department to get the foreign policy experience and now has a record on it that should have every sane person saying keep her away from sharp objects and things that go "boom".

Funny though, formally Schultz takes her orders from Obama, as the Chairman of the Party, the DNC Board of Directors and team Hillary.   If any blame should go around, it should splash onto all individuals in DNC, not just Schultz.  Moreover, her boss, "constitutional scholar" Obama, in this particular case also looks like a regular Chicago Mafiosi: he and his DNC accomplishes  swindle the millions of Americans who donated on average $27 to Bernie's campaign hoping (falsely as we know now) that it was a fair contest... 

Why did "Crooked Hillary" directly her puppets in DNC to sabotage Bernie? She didn't need to, as she got super delegates in her pocket from the very start.  But like many sociopaths she did because she can. Now many Bernie backers won't vote for her.  As this election is about establishment (and that means that people are not voting for, they're voting against) and Hillary is an establishment candidate. A female successor of neoliberal "bait and switch" king Obama; who is widely hated because of his support of TPP. ) i think she lost quit a bit of votes due to this scandal.  This election cycle the vote against establishment politicians might be stronger than the vote for them. That's why Jeb Bush lost.

We shouldn't get roped into discussing allegations about who leaked the emails. That's what Hillary wants the conversation to be about. It is the content of emails and thier authenticity  that matter. The fact is these emails show the DNC fixed the nomination for Hillary. This has been so downplayed by the mainstream media as it shows them in their true light.  Compare their coverage (or the lack of thereof) to the 24x7 coverage Melania Trump's plagiarised speech got.

We shouldn't get roped into discussing allegations about who leaked the emails. That's what Hillary wants the conversation to be about. It is the content of emails and their authenticity  that matter. The fact is these emails show the DNC fixed the nomination for Hillary. This has been so downplayed by the mainstream media as it shows them in their true light.  Compare their coverage (or the lack of thereof) to the 24x7 coverage Melania Trump's plagiarized speech got.

Michael109,   

Clinton, who received 3.1m from Wall Street for speeches last year, and who was "extremely careless" with national security and who clearly lied under oath to Congress had the entire system rigged in her favour and millions of mostly younger people who supported Sanders have received a slap in the face by a corrupt Dem Party.

Clinton has dragged the party into the sewer with her. They should have told her to step down months ago. This is a shameful Dem convention

Like Clinton foundation and its affiliate entities, the DNC, could be considered a criminal enterprise or racketing influenced organization. Those who haven’t realized that, or worse, who shill for them are willfully ignorant, amoral, or unethical.  Clinton has dragged the party into the sewer with her. They should have told her to step down months ago. This is a shameful Dem convention

VietnamVet

The 2016 election cannot be looked at in isolation. The wars for profit are spreading from Nigeria through Syria to Ukraine. Turkey was just lost to the Islamists and is on the road to being a failed state. The EU is in an existential crisis due to Brexit, the refugee crisis and austerity. Western leadership is utterly incompetent and failing to protect its citizens.

Globalization is failing. Its Losers are tipping over the apple cart. Humans are returning to their tribal roots for safety. The drums for war with Russia are beating. Clinton / Kaine are 100% Status Quo Globalists. Trump / Pence are candidates of change to who knows what. Currently I am planning on voting for the Green Party in the hope it becomes viable and praying that the chaos avoids Maryland.

Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and DNC staff served as part of Clinton campaign and designed and amplified phony attacks on Sanders. Krugman plays the role of Clinton surrogate, using campaign talking points and spin to claim that Sanders is “over the edge”. They launched a a systematic attack  basically questioning his authenticity. These are mostly cheap swiftboating attacks and straw man arguments coming from the mainstream media and DNC insiders. The attacks are usually passive-aggressive, as in the New York Times ignoring him for long stretches and then coming up with the occasional dismissive "he can't possibly win, because we say so" tripe. They often reek of cheerful condescension. See this and this.

Then there was more dangerous theme casting Sanders as a convenient prop for Hillary Clinton, a supporting actor who exists only for the cosmetic purpose of "pushing her to the left." This trope is becoming so over-used that people are beginning to notice that it is a dirty trick. These are dangerous times for non-establishment politicians due to domination of neoliberal Political Correctness and corporate neoliberal propaganda (The Swift-boating of Bernie Sanders ):

We had the expected political reaction—the DNC, under the enlightened leadership of Hillary supporter Debbie Wasserman Schultz, has decided PAC money from lobbyists is OK after all, thus freeing up David Brock’s Hillary PAC to do whatever the hell it wants. The head of the Democratic party in Iowa, who has a pro-Hillary license plate, has ruled out any sort of recount on the voting in Iowa, about which a number of questions had been raised, but the media appears to have moved on... 

Hillary definitely has the 1% vote locked up ... but they are, after all, just 1%.

The best analysis of DNC leak that I have found so far is Peter van Buren article in American Canservative Unpacking the DNC Emails The American Conservative (July 26, 2016), His 11 point really cover all the bases:

... ... ...
  1. The same people on the Clinton team who made enormous efforts to claim her private email server—which operated unencrypted over the Internet for three months, including during trips to China and Russia, and which contained top-secret national-security data—was not hacked by the Russians now are certain that the DNC server was hacked by the Russians.
  2. Many in Camp Clinton and the media labeled Bernie Sanders’ supporters paranoid when they claimed that the DNC was working against them. The hacked emails confirm that the DNC was in fact working against them. One official proposed getting “someone,” presumably a reporter, to ask Sanders if he’s an atheist to discredit him in religious areas.
  3. Claims of pro-Clinton media bias were dismissed during the primaries. The hacked emails confirm that the DNC was working closely with the media to seek negative coverage of Sanders and positive coverage of Clinton.
  4. Politico now admits it was a “mistake” sending the DNC an article draft in advance. The writer showed the draft to the DNC even before his own editors saw it.
  5. Facebook admits to blocking WikiLeaks links to the DNC email hack from its newsfeeds (but blames spam filters).
  6. The DNC appears to have expended significantly more effort against Bernie Sanders than it did against any of the Republican candidates.
  7. Instead of focusing on the contents of the hacked emails and the dirty tricks they exposed, many mainstream-media outlets headlined instead the Clinton-campaign talking point that the Russians hacked the emails and released them in an effort to derail her candidacy in favor of Donald Trump’s. Many of the same stories suggest Trump is some sort of pro-Putin stooge.
  8. On 60 Minutes, Clinton refused to say that intervention by the DNC to favor one candidate was “improper.” Her non-answer was edited out of the broadcast when it ran on Sunday; the network later released it online.
  9. After DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced her resignation following this week’s Democratic convention, the Clinton campaign announced Wasserman Schultz would be hired by them as “honorary chair of Hillary’s campaign’s 50-state program to elect Democrats in every part of the country, and as a surrogate for her campaign nationally.”
  10. Wasserman Schultz will be replaced as DNC chair by (only now former) CNN commentator Donna Brazile. Brazile argued the pro-Clinton side of debates on CNN throughout the primary season.
  11. In the hacked emails, Brazile said “I will cuss out the Sanders camp!” over complaints by Sanders of inadequate representation by the DNC. In March, while still employed by CNN, Brazile called Sanders’ decision to run as a Democrat (rather than an independent) for the additional media exposure “extremely disgraceful.”

Sadly, Bernie Sanders, his campaign sabotaged by the DNC—and what were once “paranoid” accusations now proved—still endorses Hillary Clinton and will still speak at the Democratic National Convention. It pains me to say, as his once-supporter, that the man has no courage. Even Ted Cruz stood up for himself in front of the Republicans in Cleveland. It is a sad day when we learn Ted Cruz has more guts than Bernie Sanders.

Those who are calling all this a coup of sorts—they’re wrong. It’s a surrender. But in the words of Hillary Clinton, what difference does it make?

Peter Van Buren blew the whistle on State Department waste and mismanagement during the “reconstruction” of Iraq in his book We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People. He writes about current events at We Meant Well. His latest book is Ghosts of Tom Joad: A Story of the #99Percent. His next work will be a novel, Hooper’s War.

All this dirty tricks define the future of Democratic Party. Seriously. Less and less people are believing that Democrat represents them. I think half of trade union members will vote Trump. That's  a direct result of the sellout by Bill Clinton of Democratic Party to Wall Street.  A vote for Mrs Clinton means a continuation of the rule of financial oligarchy what we've experienced since Reagan, and that is not acceptable.  Another four years of amoral enrichment of transnational corporations that Hillary election guarantee is just kicking can down the road.

Attempt to blame Russians and Putin

Seems Putin controls Trump and Clinton! The man is amazing.

Only Jedi Knights can stop him.

“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,”
 Donald J. Trump said, referring to messages deemed personal by Hillary Clinton
 and deleted from her private email server.

 

Bullsh**t that MSM are now propagating is essentially a variation of the old theme  "The Russians are Coming".  Here is nice satire on the topic (washingtonsblog.com):

MC: President Putin, did the Russian government hack the DNC email server and then publically release those emails through Wikileaks the day before the Democratic convention?

Putin: Yes.

MC: Yes! Are you serious?

Putin: I’m quite serious.

MC: How can you justify this open meddling in United States politics?

MC: How can you justify this open meddling in United States politics?

Putin: Your question should be what took Russia so long. The US oligarchs and their minions surround us with military bases and nuclear missiles, damage our trade to Europe, and seek to destabilize our domestic politics.  These emails are nothing in the big picture. But they’re sort of funny, don’t you agree?

MC: I’m not sure that funny is the right word.  What do you mean by that?

Putin:   You’ve got Hillary Clinton running as a strong and independent woman. Of course, nobody would know who she is had she not married Bill Clinton. She’s not independent. Quite the contrary. She had to marry a philandering redneck to get to where she is. When it comes to strength, I can say only this. How strong can you be if you have to cheat and create a rigged game to win the nomination?

MC: Anything else about your leak to cheer us up?

Putin: This situation is the epitome of ironic humor. After the emails were released, the focus was all on DNC Chair and Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. That’s fine for now but what happens when people start asking why Wasserman-Schultz had the DNC screw Sanders and boost Hillary? Did she just wake up one day and decide this on her own?. Not likely. She was and remains Hillary’s agent.   It will take people a while to arrive that answer. When enough people hear about Wasserman-Schultz’s key role in the Clinton campaign, everything will be clear.   It’s adios Hillary. That inevitable conclusion, by the way, is the reason the DNC made such a big deal about Russia hacking the DNC.  That was diversion one right out of the gate.

DNC and Clinton are going to push the Russian card very hard in anticipation of further stories and revelations of corruption, money laundering, etc.  Technical analysis provided is some idiotic, entry level nonsense. And it should ne complete dulsh*t as those cases are very complex and can used smokescreen -- deflecting attention from a read source (for example Israel) to Russians (Israel has large Russian speaking population, that is well represented in security services of the country).

When the USA opened this can of worm with Stixnet (discovered around mid 2010) and Flame (discovered around 2012), they did not expect a blowback. Now it start coming: it is simply impossible to secure "normal" Microsoft-based IT system against any sophisticated adversary. Remember that we live in the period when developed by NSA and "friends" Flame and Stixnet worm are part of the recorded history. And  technologies used in them are well studied by all major world three letter agencies. They became a part of their workbook.  And the response to their devilishness they generated even more devilish methods of attack of any IT infrastructure based on Microsoft technologies, to say nothing about such low hanging fruit as completely  corrupt  DNC with semi-competent IT staff using pathetic Microsoft Exchange based email system: (naked capitalism):

However, in this short post I want to focus on a much narrower question: Can we ever know who hacked the DNC email? Because if we can't, then clearly we can't know the Russians did. And so I want to hoist this by alert reader JacobiteInTraining from comments :

Yup, as a former server admin it is patently absurd to attribute a hack to anyone in particular until a substantial amount of forensic work has been done. (read, poring over multiple internal log files…gathering yet more log files of yet more internal devices, poring over them, then – once the request hops out of your org – requesting logfiles from remote entities, poring over *those* log files, requesting further log files from yet more upstream entities, wash rinse repeat ad infinitum).

For example, at its simplest, I would expect a middling-competency hacker to find an open wifi hub across town to connect to, then VPN to server in, say, Tonga, then VPN from there to another box in Sweden, then connect to a PC previously compromised in Iowa, then VPN to yet another anonymous cloud server in Latvia, and (assuming the mountain dew is running low, gotta get cracking) then RDP to the target server and grab as many docs as possible. RAR those up and encrypt them, FTP them to a compromised media server in South Korea, email them from there to someones gmail account previously hacked, xfer them to a P2P file sharing app, and then finally access them later from a completely different set of servers.

In many cases where I did this sort of analysis I still ended up with a complete dead end: some sysadmins at remote companies or orgs would be sympathetic and give me actual related log files. Others would be sympathetic but would not give files, and instead do their own analysis to give me tips. Many never responded, and most IPs ended up at unknown (compromised) personal PCs, or devices where the owner could not be found anyway.

If the hacker was sloppy and left other types of circumstantial evidence you might get lucky – but that demographic mostly points back to script kiddies and/or criminal dweebs – i.e., rather then just surreptitiously exfiltrating the goods they instead left messages or altered things that seemed to indicate their own backgrounds or prejudices, or left a message that was more easily 'traced'. If, of course, you took that evidence at face value and it was not itself an attempt at obfuscation.

Short of a state actor such as an NSA who captures it ALL anyway, and/or can access any log files at any public or private network at its own whim – its completely silly to attribute a hack to anyone at this point.

So, I guess I am reduced to LOL OMG WTF its fer the LULZ!!!!!

And :

Just to clarify on the "…If the hacker was sloppy and left other types of circumstantial evidence…" – this is basically what I have seen reported as 'evidence' pointing to Russia: the Cyrillic keyboard signature, the 'appeared to cease work on Russian holidays' stuff, and the association with 'known Russian hacking groups'.

That's great and all, but in past work I am sure my own 'research' could easily have gotten me 'associated' with known hacking groups. Presumably various 'sophisticated' methods and tools get you closer to possible suspects…but that kind of stuff is cycled and recycled throughout the community worldwide – as soon as anything like that is known and published, any reasonably competent hacker (or org of hackers) is learning how to do the same thing and incorporating such things into their own methods. (imitation being the sincerest form of flattery)

I guess I have a lot more respect for the kinds of people I expect to be getting a paycheck from foreign Intelligence agencies then to believe that they would leave such obvious clues behind 'accidentally'. But if we are going to be starting wars over this stuff w/Russia, or China, I guess I would hope the adults in the room don't go all apesh*t and start chanting COMMIES, THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING!, etc. before the ink is dry on the 'crime'.

The whole episode reminds me of the Sony hack , for which Obama also blamed a demonized foreign power. Interestingly - to beg the question here - the blaming was also based on a foreign character set in the data (though Hangul, not Korean). Look! A clue!

JacobiteInTraining's methodology also reminds me of NC's coverage of Grexit. Symbol manipulators - like those in the Democrat-leaning creative class - often believe that real economy systems are as easy to manipulate as symbol systems are. In Greece, for example, it really was a difficult technical challenge for Greece to reintroduce the drachma, especially given the time-frame, as contributor Clive remorselessly showed. Similarly, it's really not credible to hire a consultant and get a hacking report with a turnaround time of less than a week, even leaving aside the idea that the DNC just might have hired a consultant that would give them the result they wanted (because who among us, etc.) What JacobiteInTraining shows us is that computer forensics is laborious, takes time, and is very unlikely to yield results suitable for framing in the narratives proffered by the political class. Of course, that does confirm all my priors!

Readers, thoughts?

Update Addition by Yves:

Another reader, Hacker, observed (emphasis original):

There is a problem with those who argue that these are sophisticated Nation State attackers and then point to the most basic circumstantial evidence to support their case. I'd bet that, among others, the Israelis have hacked some Russian servers to launch attacks from and have some of their workers on a Russian holiday schedule. Those things have been written about in attack analysis so much over the last 15-20 years that they'd be stupid not to.

Now, I'm not saying the Israelis did it. I'm saying that the evidence provided so far by those arguing it is Russia is so flaky as to prove that the Russia accusers are blinded or corrupted by their own political agenda.

Update [Yves, courtesy Richard Smith] 7:45 AM. Another Medium piece by Jeffrey Carr, Can Facts Slow The DNC Breach Runaway Train? who has been fact-checking this story and comes away Not Happy. For instance:

Thomas Rid wrote:

One of the strongest pieces of evidence linking GRU to the DNC hack is the equivalent of identical fingerprints found in two burglarized buildings: a reused command-and-control address - 176.31.112[.]10 - that was hard coded in a piece of malware found both in the German parliament as well as on the DNC's servers. Russian military intelligence was identified by the German domestic security agency BfV as the actor responsible for the Bundestag breach. The infrastructure behind the fake MIS Department domain was also linked to the Berlin intrusion through at least one other element, a shared SSL certificate.

This paragraph sounds quite damning if you take it at face value, but if you invest a little time into checking the source material, its carefully constructed narrative falls apart.

Problem #1: The IP address 176.31.112[.]10 used in the Bundestag breach as a Command and Control server has never been connected to the Russian intelligence services. In fact, Claudio Guarnieri , a highly regarded security researcher, whose technical analysis was referenced by Rid, stated that "no evidence allows to tie the attacks to governments of any particular country."

Mind you, he has two additional problems with that claim alone. This piece is a must read if you want to dig further into this topic.

NOTES

[1] More than a talking point but, really, less than a narrative. It's like we need a new word for these bite-sized, meme-ready, disposable, "throw 'em against the wall and see if they stick" stories; mini-narrative, or narrativelette, perhaps. "All the crunch of a real narrative, but none of the nutrition!"

[2] This post is not about today's Trump moral panic, where the political class is frothing and stamping about The Donald's humorous (or ballbusting, take your pick) statement that he "hoped" the Russians had hacked the 30,000 emails that Clinton supposedly deleted from the email server she privatized in her public capacity as Secretary of State before handing the whole flaming and steaming mess over to investigators. First, who cares? Those emails are all about yoga lessons and Chelsea's wedding. Right? Second, Clinton didn't secure the server for three months. What did she expect? Third, Trump's suggestion is just dumb; the NSA has to have that data, so just ask them? Finally, to be fair, Trump shouldn't have uttered the word "Russia." He should have said "Liechtenstein," or "Tonga," because it's hard to believe that there's a country too small to hack as fat a target as Clinton presented; Trump was being inflammatory. Points off. Bad show.

Pavel , July 28, 2016 at 4:01 am

For those interested, the excellent interviewer Scott Horton just spoke with Jeffrey Carr, an IT security expert about all this. It's about 30 mins:

Jeffrey Carr, a cyber intelligence expert and CEO of Taia Global, Inc., discusses his fact-checking of Josh Marshall's TalkingPointsMemo article that claims a close alliance between Trump and Putin; and why the individuals blaming Russia for the DNC email hack are more motivated by politics than solid evidence.

–The Scott Horton Show: 7/25/16 Jeffrey Carr

Carr makes the point that even supposed clues about Russian involvement ("the default language is Cyrillic!") are meaningless as all these could be spoofed by another party.

Separately it just shows again Team Clinton's (and DNC's) political deviousness and expertise how they –with the full support of the MSM of course –have managed to deflect the discussion to Trump and Russia from how the DNC subverted US democracy.

pretzelattack , July 28, 2016 at 4:15 am

and again, we see the cavalier attitude about national security from the clinton camp, aggravating the already tense relationship with russia over this bullshit, all to avoid some political disadvantage. clinton doesn't care if russia gets the nuclear launch codes seemingly, but impact her chances to win the race and it's all guns firing.

dk , July 28, 2016 at 4:59 am

"… all these could be spoofed by another party."

Well yeah, and I could be a bot, how do you know I'm not?

Absent any other evidence to work with, I can accept it as credible that a clumsy Russian or Baltic user posted viewed and saved docs instead of the originals; par for the course in public and private bureaucracies the world over. It would have been useful to see the original Properties metadata; instead we get crapped up copies. That only tells me the poster is something of a lightweight, and it at least somewhat suggests that these docs passed through multiple hands.

But that doesn't mean A) the original penetration occurred under state control (or even in Russia proper), much less B) that Putin Himself ordered the hack attempts, which is the searing retinal afterimage that the the media name-dropping and photo-illustrating conflation produces.

Unspoofed, the Cyrillic fingerprints still do not closely constrain conclusion to A, and even less to B.

Another name for the trick DNC used is "Catch a chief" -- a deflection of attention from their own criminal behaviour. But they should now be really afraid about what can come next from Wikileaks or elsewhere. I don't think Hillary was capable to understand how easy it is to find corruption, especially when there's a email trail.  And this lack of understanding is a typical feature of a sociopath (http://www.theblaze.com/contributions/could-hillary-clinton-be-a-sociopath/ )

As Guardian reported (The Guardian) Clinton campaign tried old "dog eat my homework" trick blaming everything on Putin and trying to ignore the content of them and the dirty laundry they expose:

Hillary Clinton’s campaign has accused Russia of meddling in the 2016 presidential election, saying its hackers stole Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails and released them to foment disunity in the party and aid Donald Trump.

Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, said on Sunday that “experts are telling us that Russian state actors broke into the DNC, stole these emails, [and are] releasing these emails for the purpose of helping Donald Trump”.

“I don’t think it’s coincidental that these emails are being released on the eve of our convention here,” he told CNN’s State of the Union, alluding to the party’s four-day exercise in unification which is set to take place this week in Philadelphia.

“This isn’t my assertion,” Mook said. “This is what experts are telling us.”

In a statement, the Clinton campaign repeated the accusation: “This is further evidence the Russian government is trying to influence the outcome of the election.”

Classic scapegoating. As Guardian commenter noted "Why is the (potential) perpetrator of the leak more significant than the content of the leak??

As life exceeds satire, one can imagine that within a week Wikileaks will produce those "missing e-mails". And later Hillary's Wall Street speeches, following the next appeal from Trump.

In any case a major US establishment party explicitly levied it's resources against a candidate it didn't like behaviors like a Mafioso clan, and when caught red handed start to deflect attention via corrupt and subservant MSM, changing focus into Russia and Putin instead. Great journalism!" The Guardian

 atopic  

I find very I interesting that, somehow, the initial DNC leak story failed to make a headline position (a day late, at that) on the Guardian, but now that it's blown up on other channels, the DNC's ridiculous conspiracy theory/distraction attempt gets top billing here. Ridiculous.

Why is the (potential) perpetrator of the leak more significant than the content of the leak?? A major US establishment party explicitly levied it's resources against a candidate it didn't like, and somehow we're talking about Putin instead. Great journalism.

 
Chanze Jennings ->  atopic

The Guardian has sunk to a new low and has entirely no shame. It's a sad day for journalism when Twitter has more integrity than most news outlets. And they wonder why newspapers are going the way of the Dodo. Remember when real journalists presented stories with little bias and tried hard to stick to the facts?

BTW there are some real experts on this and they have a different opinion. Check comments for the blog post: 

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/07/nsa-whistleblower-not-so-fast-on-claims-russia-behind-dnc-email-hack.html


 

Heat on Sanders for betrayal of his supporters

DNC betrayed Bernie Sanders and the rest of America. But at this moment Sanders already folded. In other words, the Clinton mafia again created a mess. And they are now turning to Sanders — the very one they betrayed — to come in and clean it up. In effect Clinton mafia wants Sanders persuade  his supporters not to harbor any ill feelings over being stabbed in the back. That gave him perfect opportunity to reneg of his promised and run as independent or with Green Party

Bernie caved. A pity really, but understandable given the fact that the collusion between a corrupt Hillary campaign and a mendacious "free" media meant that even getting to the Convention floor was a struggle.

NYT now is afraid to open comments on this as they will swamped with denunciation of Hillary.  Sanders lied to his supporters that Trump represents bigger danger then Killary. nobody represent bigger danger then Killary.  Bernie Sanders, hypocrite, or canny operator? Is this another hostage situation and with what Clinton criminal cartel threatened him ?  “This campaign is not really about Hillary Clinton, or Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders, or any other candidate who sought the presidency,” Sanders told a New Hampshire crowd Tuesday in a speech endorsing Hillary Clinton. “This campaign is about the needs of the American people and addressing the very serious crisis that we face.” Posting under the hashtag #SandersSellsOut, sanders supporters drew parallels with a previous uncomfortable endorsement of a presidential candidate, labeling it “another hostage situation.” Most view his endorsement on Monday, as the infidelity in a relationship and a bad break up.

Democratic voters are now splintered over neoliberal globalization, much like Republican supporters. Most already made decisions whom they will support and Clinton mafia has little chances to move those who reject their criminality and support of neoliberal globalization. It was actually Bill Clinton who sold the party to Wall Street making it another wing on neoliberal party of globalist and transnational corporations.

The Democrats' dirty laundry was aired at a worse possibly time for Hillary and I hope she will pay for DNC manipulations full price. It is clear after the Brexit vote and Donald Trump’s victory in the Republican presidential primaries that voters are revolting against the neoliberal globalization that dominated the US and Britain economic and foreign policy since the 1970th, if not earlier.  The willingness of people to be intimidated by bought neoliberal economists into supporting cosmopolitan outcomes appears for the moment to have been exhausted.

Corrupt to the core MSM ignore the event and try to distract readers with scapegoating nonsense

ABC and CNN are essentially part of the DNC propaganda wing. They and most other MSM were trying to reshape this mess to reduce the amount of damage.  Stephanopolis worked for Bill Clinton. And donated $75,000 to Hillary's campaign. And now he is trying to paint Trump as having ties to the Putin regime.

They try do not touch Hillary connections with Saudi, revive email scandal, touch Clinton cash skandal,  etc. They really behave like they are part of Clinton campaign. And readers noticed that as is evident from comments (The 4 Most Damaging Emails From the DNC WikiLeaks Dump - ABC News):

Kintbury  -> Mr. Fusion 21 hours ago

You are going to have to do a heck of a lot better than that. A Saudi Prince has admitted to funding a large portion of Hillary's campaign. That is a tie. All the money she took from those countries while benefiting them as Secretary of State is a tie.

Know Mei > deanbob
"Spoken like someone who has never been a member of the Democratic Party and has no understanding of what we do," Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Oh, believe me, Debbie, the American people know what the Democratic Party and the Republican Party does. Both parties embellish, manipulate, grant high positions to big donors, plot, backstab and railroad the vote of the American electorate. However, business as usual did not work well for the Republican Party elitists this primary season. Donald Trump beat the Republican Party elitists at their game. Bernie Sanders attempted to do the same to the Democratic Party.
Alti  -> ADLives 2 days ago

I think they are being short-sighted. Trump will in all likelihood win now and I don't see him sticking to the script. The media has completely betrayed the American public on this story. From Facebook and Twitter blocking and deleting stories re: same initially - to now with the non-articles we are getting from the big news agencies. Finding decent, honest news coverage shouldn't be so hard.

William Carr > Know Mei •

“Both parties embellish, manipulate, grant high positions to big donors, plot, backstab and railroad the vote of the American electorate”

America needs international monitors to oversee our elections

In reality Wikileaks exposed the blatant corruption of the primary process for voters. The elephant was in the room, but the real situation with Democratic Party primary process is now  suppressed.


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[Mar 20, 2017] As French Election Nears, Le Pen Targets Voters Her Party Once Repelled

Notable quotes:
"... "There's been a real evolution," Philippe Renault-Guillemet, the retired head of a small manufacturing company, said as he handed out National Front leaflets in the market on a recent day. "A few years ago, they would insult us. It's changed ..."
"... With a month to go, the signs are mixed. Many voters, particularly affluent ones, at markets here and farther up the coast betray a traditional distaste for the far-right party. Yet others once repelled by a party with a heritage rooted in France's darkest political traditions - anti-Semitism, xenophobia and a penchant for the fist - are considering it. ..."
"... French politics are particularly volatile this election season. Traditional power centers - the governing Socialists and the center-right Republicans - are in turmoil. Ms. Le Pen's chief rival, Emmanuel Macron, is a youthful and untested politician running at the head of a new party. ..."
"... Those uncertainties - and a nagging sense that mainstream parties have failed to offer solutions to France's economic anemia - have left the National Front better positioned than at any time in its 45-year history. ..."
"... Frédéric Boccaletti, the party's leader in the Var, knows exactly what needs to be done. Last week, he and his fellow National Front activists gathered for an evening planning session in La Seyne-Sur-Mer, a working-class port town devastated by the closing of centuries-old naval shipyards nearly 20 years ago. Mr. Boccaletti, who is running for Parliament, keeps his headquarters here. ..."
"... It is not unlike the strategy that President Trump applied in the United States by campaigning in blue-collar, Democratic strongholds in rust-belt Ohio. No one thought he stood a chance there. Yet he won. ..."
"... "Now, we've got doctors, lawyers, the liberal professions with us," Mr. Boccaletti said. "Since the election of Marine" to the party's presidency in 2011, "it's all changed. ..."
"... The backlash against neoliberal globalization creates very strange alliances indeed. That was already visible during the last Presidential elections. When a considerable part of lower middle class professionals (including women) voted against Hillary. ..."
"... As Fred noted today (Why did so many white women vote for Donald Trump http://for.tn/2f51y7s ) there were many Trump supporters among white women with the college degree, for which Democrats identity politics prescribed voting for Hillary. ..."
"... I think this tendency might only became stronger in the next elections: neoliberal globalization is now viewed as something detrimental to the country future and current economic prosperity by many, usually not allied, segments of population. ..."
Mar 20, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Peter K. : March 20, 2017 at 09:23 AM
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/19/world/europe/french-election-marine-le-pen-national-front.html

As French Election Nears, Le Pen Targets Voters Her Party Once Repelled

By ADAM NOSSITER

MARCH 19, 2017

SANARY-SUR-MER, France - The National Front's leafleteers are no longer spat upon. Its local candidate's headquarters sit defiantly in a fraying Muslim neighborhood. And last week, Marine Le Pen, the party's leader, packed thousands into a steamy meeting hall nearby for a pugnacious speech mocking "the system" and vowing victory in this spring's French presidential election.

"There's been a real evolution," Philippe Renault-Guillemet, the retired head of a small manufacturing company, said as he handed out National Front leaflets in the market on a recent day. "A few years ago, they would insult us. It's changed."

It has long been accepted wisdom that Ms. Le Pen and her far-right party can make it through the first round of the presidential voting on April 23, when she and four other candidates will be on the ballot, but that she will never capture the majority needed to win in a runoff in May.

But a visit to this southeastern National Front stronghold suggests that Ms. Le Pen may be succeeding in broadening her appeal to the point where a victory is more plausible, even if the odds are still stacked against her.

With a month to go, the signs are mixed. Many voters, particularly affluent ones, at markets here and farther up the coast betray a traditional distaste for the far-right party. Yet others once repelled by a party with a heritage rooted in France's darkest political traditions - anti-Semitism, xenophobia and a penchant for the fist - are considering it.

"I've said several times I would do it, but I've never had the courage," Christian Pignol, a vendor of plants and vegetables at the Bandol market, said about voting for the National Front. "This time may be the good one."

"It's the fear of the unknown," he continued, as several fellow vendors nodded. "People would like to try it, but they are afraid. But maybe it's the solution. We've tried everything for 30, 40 years. We'd like to try it, but we're also afraid."

French politics are particularly volatile this election season. Traditional power centers - the governing Socialists and the center-right Republicans - are in turmoil. Ms. Le Pen's chief rival, Emmanuel Macron, is a youthful and untested politician running at the head of a new party.

Those uncertainties - and a nagging sense that mainstream parties have failed to offer solutions to France's economic anemia - have left the National Front better positioned than at any time in its 45-year history.

But if it is to win nationally, the party must do much better than even the 49 percent support it won in this conservative Var department, home to three National Front mayors, in elections in 2015. More critically, it must turn once-hostile areas of the country in Ms. Le Pen's favor and attract new kinds of voters - professionals and the upper and middle classes. Political analysts are skeptical.

Frédéric Boccaletti, the party's leader in the Var, knows exactly what needs to be done. Last week, he and his fellow National Front activists gathered for an evening planning session in La Seyne-Sur-Mer, a working-class port town devastated by the closing of centuries-old naval shipyards nearly 20 years ago. Mr. Boccaletti, who is running for Parliament, keeps his headquarters here.

"I'm telling you, you've got to go to the difficult neighborhoods - it's not what you think," Mr. Boccaletti told them, laughing slyly. "Our work has got to be in the areas that have resisted us most" - meaning the coast's more affluent areas.

It is not unlike the strategy that President Trump applied in the United States by campaigning in blue-collar, Democratic strongholds in rust-belt Ohio. No one thought he stood a chance there. Yet he won.

"Now, we've got doctors, lawyers, the liberal professions with us," Mr. Boccaletti said. "Since the election of Marine" to the party's presidency in 2011, "it's all changed."

...

libezkova -> Peter K.... March 20, 2017 at 11:05 AM

The backlash against neoliberal globalization creates very strange alliances indeed. That was already visible during the last Presidential elections. When a considerable part of lower middle class professionals (including women) voted against Hillary.

As Fred noted today (Why did so many white women vote for Donald Trump http://for.tn/2f51y7s ) there were many Trump supporters among white women with the college degree, for which Democrats identity politics prescribed voting for Hillary.

I think this tendency might only became stronger in the next elections: neoliberal globalization is now viewed as something detrimental to the country future and current economic prosperity by many, usually not allied, segments of population.

[Mar 19, 2017] Clintons time is passed. Her view of common ground is still based in the 20th century and the Third Way neoliberal politics she and her husband helped create. That era is over.

Notable quotes:
"... Clinton's time is passed. Her view of "common ground" is still based in the 20th century and the Third Way neoliberal politics she and her husband helped create. That era is over. ..."
"... Why won't she just go off and become a professor somewhere, like Dukakis did? ..."
"... Hillary like bill never feels guilt. Only ambition. They are monsters ..."
"... Utterly without a sense of culpability ..."
Mar 19, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Fred C. Dobbs : March 18, 2017 at 07:03 AM , 2017 at 07:03 AM
Hillary Clinton Says She's
'Ready to Come Out of the Woods'
https://nyti.ms/2nCIzGS
NYT - AP - March 17

SCRANTON, Pa. - Hillary Clinton said Friday she's "ready to come out of the woods" and help Americans find common ground.

Clinton's gradual return to the public spotlight following her presidential election loss continued with a St. Patrick's Day speech in her late father's Pennsylvania hometown of Scranton.

"I'm like a lot of my friends right now, I have a hard time watching the news," Clinton told an Irish women's group.

But she urged a divided country to work together to solve problems, recalling how, as first lady, she met with female leaders working to bring peace to Northern Ireland.

"I do not believe that we can let political divides harden into personal divides. And we can't just ignore, or turn a cold shoulder to someone because they disagree with us politically," she said.

Friday night's speech was one of several she is to deliver in the coming months, including a May 26 commencement address at her alma mater, Wellesley College in Massachusetts. The Democrat also is working on a book of personal essays that will include some reflections on her loss to Donald Trump.

Clinton, who was spotted taking a walk in the woods around her hometown of Chappaqua, New York, two days after losing the election to Donald Trump, quipped she had wanted to stay in the woods, "but you can only do so much of that."

She told the Society of Irish Women that it'll be up to citizens, not a deeply polarized Washington, to bridge the political divide.

"I am ready to come out of the woods and to help shine a light on what is already happening around kitchen tables, at dinners like this, to help draw strength that will enable everybody to keep going," said Clinton. ...

Fred C. Dobbs -> Fred C. Dobbs... , March 18, 2017 at 07:11 AM
(As you may recall HRC won the popular vote,
and also 472 counties which generate
64% of the US GDP.)

... Our observation: The less-than-500 counties that Hillary Clinton carried nationwide encompassed a massive 64 percent of America's economic activity as measured by total output in 2015. By contrast, the more-than-2,600 counties that Donald Trump won generated just 36 percent of the country's output-just a little more than one-third of the nation's economic activity. ...

High-output America vs low-output America http://brook.gs/2fIOhlt via @BrookingsInst

Fred C. Dobbs -> Fred C. Dobbs... , March 18, 2017 at 08:25 AM
Trump did win PA, narrowly, 48.2% to 47.5% for HRC. Libertarians got 2.4%.

HRC won most urban areas, including Scranton (6 counties). Trump won elsewhere, including Clinton county.

Dan Kervick -> Fred C. Dobbs... , March 18, 2017 at 08:37 AM
Please no.

Clinton's time is passed. Her view of "common ground" is still based in the 20th century and the Third Way neoliberal politics she and her husband helped create. That era is over.

Why won't she just go off and become a professor somewhere, like Dukakis did?

paine -> Fred C. Dobbs... , March 18, 2017 at 10:00 AM
Hillary like bill never feels guilt. Only ambition. They are monsters
paine -> paine... , March 18, 2017 at 10:01 AM
Utterly without a sense of culpability

[Mar 19, 2017] Why Trumpism Is a Global Phenomenon

Notable quotes:
"... various European countries have seen a significant rise in votes for populist parties (on the right and left) and a decline in center-left "mainstream" parties. ..."
"... As a result, most Americans are in debt, most Americans' wages have not increased above inflation, and most of the gains of the past 30 years of America's economic growth have gone to the top 1% of income earners. (And the same trends are true for other Western democracies.) ..."
"... Blyth points out the famous Elephant Chart by economist Branko Milanovic, which shows the change in real income between 1988 and 2008 for all people in the world: basically, during the past 30 years, everyone in the world has seen a real increase in their income except for the Western world's middle class. ..."
"... Mark Blyth poses the example of a hypothetical man named Gary who lives in Gary, Indiana, who is emblematic of a typical Midwestern white working-class Trump voter. In 1989, Gary had 10 years in the union at age 30 and was a line supervisor making $30 an hour (real dollars, adjusted for inflation). In 1993, after a few years of losing factory jobs to Southern states, the U.S. passed NAFTA and his town lost a lot of jobs. The town took a huge economic hit. Tax base declines, schools get worse. Gary wound up getting a job in a call center for $15 an hour. 5 years later, the call center moved from Indiana to India. Now at age 58, Gary works for $11.67 per hour at Walmart. ..."
"... The only person who actually seems to articulate anything that Gary gives a shit about is Trump. And Gary knows that Trump's a buffoon, he knows he's a reality TV star. But Gary has seen politician after politician every four years saying 'vote for me, better jobs! vote for me, more security!' and Gary's life has gotten crappier and crappier. So he has no reason whatsoever to believe a word that they say. So he has a liar on one side, and a bullshit artist on the other. Which one gives you more possibilities?" ..."
"... However: a sizable portion of Trump's vote-just like Brexit and just like the rise of other populist parties in the UK and Europe-was more of a despairing protest vote, a way to send a message to the political establishment and mainstream media: we don't like what you're doing, this system you've built is not working for us, we don't like the way you talk down to us, and we're gonna throw a brick through your window. ..."
Mar 19, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Peter K. -> Peter K.... March 17, 2017 at 09:32 AM

, 2017 at 09:32 AM
https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2017/01/trump-is-not-a-fluke-why-trumpism-is-a-global-phen.html

Trump Is Not a Fluke: Why "Trumpism" Is a Global Phenomenon

By Ben Gran | January 31, 2017 | 4:25pm

Where did Trump come from? Is the rise of Trump a fluke, a problem unique to America, born of American reality TV culture, combining 20th century American xenophobia with the worst aspects of 21st century social media into an ominous new post-truth world? Are American Trump voters uniquely racist and stupid and self-sabotaging? Or is Trump part of a broader global trend in politics, where voters throughout the industrialized world are revolting against the established political, economic and social order?

There was a great lecture (from before the election) by Mark Blyth, Brown University professor of international political economy, about global Trumpism where he discusses how the same factors that are playing out in America are also happening in lots of other Western democracies, driven by populism (both right-wing and left-wing), racism, xenophobia, and authoritarianism. For example, various European countries have seen a significant rise in votes for populist parties (on the right and left) and a decline in center-left "mainstream" parties. One particularly powerful example was the unexpected success of the Brexit vote for the UK to leave the European Union; despite the pleas of the political establishment and most members of the media, a small majority of UK voters decided to leave the EU even though it was widely described as an economically damaging, self-sabotaging, xenophobia-driven, unthinkable decision. Sound familiar?

Blyth explores the economic factors and argues that Trump's victory should not be seen as an isolated, local "America-only" event; instead, Trump's victory is part of a broader trend where the post-World War II neoliberal global order is breaking down. What will replace it? No one knows. But it's worth listening to Mark Blyth for perspectives on how we ended up with Trump, and how to understand the broader political and economic forces that made Trump possible.

Here are a few of Mark Blyth's key points on what "global Trumpism" means and how it happened:

A Brief History of the Post World War II Economic Order

Ever since World War II, the governments and financial institutions of "the West" (U.S., UK, Europe) have focused their national economic policy on two broad targets-from 1945 to 1975, broadly speaking, the goal was to achieve "full employment." This is part of why the 1950s-60s are looked back upon as a kind of Golden Age for the middle class, especially for people who worked in manufacturing at union jobs with good wages and benefits. And broadly speaking, this policy was successful! But full employment led to inflation-and by 1975, inflation had gotten so bad that creditor classes within these countries (investors, banks, wealthy people) started to revolt, and put in politicians like Reagan and Thatcher who focused on strong anti-inflation policies, and who changed the way that everyday people thought about the economy by appealing to voters' interests as consumers ("low-priced products from China are good! High-paid union labor is bad!") instead of their interests as workers or union members. All of this was good for creditors and consumers, even if it was bad for borrowers and workers. That's where we've been ever since 1975: central banks have fought inflation, interest rates have been low, labor unions have been weak-to-nonexistent, and life has gotten better for creditors and worse for debtors.

As a result, most Americans are in debt, most Americans' wages have not increased above inflation, and most of the gains of the past 30 years of America's economic growth have gone to the top 1% of income earners. (And the same trends are true for other Western democracies.)

Meanwhile, during that time, the center-left parties (Clinton's New Democrats, Tony Blair's New Labour, and Germany's Social Democratic Party) have moved away from their traditional working-class base and have become more comfortable hob-nobbing with bankers and tech CEOs and other corporate interests. So where are working class voters supposed to go? This is where left-wing populists like Bernie Sanders and right-wing nationalists like Trump are filling the void in the political marketplace.

The Elephant Chart

Blyth points out the famous Elephant Chart by economist Branko Milanovic, which shows the change in real income between 1988 and 2008 for all people in the world: basically, during the past 30 years, everyone in the world has seen a real increase in their income except for the Western world's middle class.

This is why so many former factory workers in the Midwest are upset about globalization: they haven't seen their lives get better from it; if anything, globalization has made their lives worse. So when Trump promises to "bring jobs back" and raise taxes on companies that export products to the U.S., that message resonates in the Rust Belt states in a way that "the wife of the guy who passed NAFTA" just never would.

Gary, from Gary

Mark Blyth poses the example of a hypothetical man named Gary who lives in Gary, Indiana, who is emblematic of a typical Midwestern white working-class Trump voter. In 1989, Gary had 10 years in the union at age 30 and was a line supervisor making $30 an hour (real dollars, adjusted for inflation). In 1993, after a few years of losing factory jobs to Southern states, the U.S. passed NAFTA and his town lost a lot of jobs. The town took a huge economic hit. Tax base declines, schools get worse. Gary wound up getting a job in a call center for $15 an hour. 5 years later, the call center moved from Indiana to India. Now at age 58, Gary works for $11.67 per hour at Walmart.

As Blyth describes in his lecture, speaking from the point of view of "Gary:" " The only person who actually seems to articulate anything that Gary gives a shit about is Trump. And Gary knows that Trump's a buffoon, he knows he's a reality TV star. But Gary has seen politician after politician every four years saying 'vote for me, better jobs! vote for me, more security!' and Gary's life has gotten crappier and crappier. So he has no reason whatsoever to believe a word that they say. So he has a liar on one side, and a bullshit artist on the other. Which one gives you more possibilities?"

Trump's Victory was an Anti-Elite Vote

Yes, Trump's a racist and a misogynist. Yes, he's horrible. Yes, lots of people voted for him out of racist or sexist hostility and wanting to raise a middle finger at Muslims and black people and Mexican immigrants.

However: a sizable portion of Trump's vote-just like Brexit and just like the rise of other populist parties in the UK and Europe-was more of a despairing protest vote, a way to send a message to the political establishment and mainstream media: we don't like what you're doing, this system you've built is not working for us, we don't like the way you talk down to us, and we're gonna throw a brick through your window.

But Trump Voters are all Racist ... Right?

By all means, condemn Trump's racism and sexism. Resist his retrograde agenda every step of the way. But liberals need to be open to the possibility that Trump won not just because of racism and sexism (those voters weren't turning out for the Democrats anyway), but because-especially in a few key Upper Midwest states-Trump was offering a message of aggressive economic populism that the Democrats were not delivering, that was embraced by just enough voters in just the right states (who otherwise might have voted for the Democrat) to give him a victory.

Trump didn't just happen in America; the political forces he represents are happening all over the Western democratic world. Other countries like Greece and Spain have elected left-wing "Trumpists" but America didn't have one of those choices on the ballot in November.

If the only lesson that liberals take away from this election is: "48% of America's voters are irredeemably racist and sexist," they're not really understanding the nature of Trump's appeal within this broader context of "global Trumpism." And they'll lose to him again in 2020.

What's Next?

Mark Blyth is oddly optimistic about America in the age of Trumpism, especially compared to Europe. He says that America has an advantage over Europe because Europe is bound by the Euro currency, which Blyth says is a "disaster" because individual countries within the Eurozone (such as Greece vs. Germany) have different conflicting political agendas that cannot be addressed by monetary policy. Trump might turn out to be a flash in the pan, a Black Swan event brought on by a one-time bizarre confluence of events and a bad matchup with the Democratic nominee.

Trump might even have some positive effects, in Blyth's view, because the U.S. would benefit from a more isolationist foreign policy with fewer costly, unending military interventions in other countries. As Blyth says in this discussion on the 2016 election results, if Europe is left to pay more for their own national defense and find their own accommodation with Russia, without relying on American military power, that would not be a bad thing for the U.S. Blyth is skeptical that Trump will actually enact any of his trade protectionist promises, since U.S. voters won't want to see higher prices for their iPhones (imported from China). It's possible that Trump's presidency will be less frighteningly radical than many liberals have feared.

Aside from Trump's immediate outrages, the broader challenge for America, and the world, is that the neoliberal political order of the past 30 years in the Western democracies is breaking down. We've elected a president who campaigned as a populist, but who's likely going to govern as a traditional Reagan-style "trickle-down economics" Republican. Those Upper Midwest swing voters who voted based on economic populism and "bringing jobs back" are not remotely going to get the populist politics that Trump promised; so the question is, can the Democrats deliver a real populist alternative instead? Will the American Left be defeated by Trumpism, or can they co-opt Trump's appeal to the middle-class and working-class, and create a new politics that truly speaks to the concerns of the people who have been left behind by globalization and our new era of wealth inequality?

sanjait -> Peter K.... , March 17, 2017 at 09:54 AM
tl:dr.
Peter K. -> sanjait... , March 17, 2017 at 01:03 PM
the short version is that the failure of neoliberalists such as yourself to provide an economy with shared prosperity has led to the rise of the populist right across the globe.

You really need to go back and study the 1920s and 1930s. History is repeating itself.

[Mar 17, 2017] Spicer apologized. But what about alternative hypothesis that British hypocrisy has no bounds:

Notable quotes:
"... British and Dutch intelligence were apparently discreetly queried regarding possible derogatory intelligence on the Trump campaign's links to Russia and they responded by providing information detailing meetings in Europe. ..."
Mar 17, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
im1dc -> Fred C. Dobbs... March 17, 2017 at 08:11 AM , 2017 at 08:11 AM
I need to hear the apology from Trump himself rather than Spicer who was obviously told to go out to the press room and say that lie.

Otherwise this is just more Trumpian Misdirection to take eyes off their arrogant mismanagement and incompetence.

libezkova -> im1dc... , March 17, 2017 at 08:04 PM
And what about alternative hypothesis that British hypocrisy has no bounds:

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/a-soft-coup-or-preserving-our-democracy/?mc_cid=2f82659492&mc_eid=32cf78e7e5

== quote ==

The campaign to link Trump to Russia also increased in intensity, including statements by multiple former and current intelligence agency heads regarding the reality of the Russian threat and the danger of electing a president who would ignore that reality. It culminated in ex-CIA Acting Director Michael Morell's claim that Trump was "an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation."

British and Dutch intelligence were apparently discreetly queried regarding possible derogatory intelligence on the Trump campaign's links to Russia and they responded by providing information detailing meetings in Europe.

Hundreds of self-described GOP foreign policy "experts" signed letters stating that they opposed Trump's candidacy and the mainstream media was unrelentingly hostile.

Leading Republicans refused to endorse Trump and some, like Senators John McCain, Marco Rubio and Lindsey Graham, cited his connections to Russia.

[Mar 17, 2017] Bernie Sanders Goes To West Virginia To Speak With Trump Supporters

Mar 17, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Jesse : March 16, 2017 at 05:36 PM , 2017 at 05:36 PM

Bernie Sanders Goes To West Virginia To Speak With Trump Supporters

http://jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com/2017/03/bernie-sanders-goes-to-west-virginia-to.html

"Certainly there are some people in the Democratic Party who want to maintain the status quo. They would rather go down with the Titanic so long as they have first-class seats." Bernie Sanders to NY Times Magazine's Charlie Homans

anne -> Jesse... , March 16, 2017 at 05:55 PM
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/13/magazine/democratic-party-election-trump.html

March 13, 2017

The New Party of No
How a president and a protest movement transformed the Democrats.
By CHARLES HOMANS

I asked [Bernie Sanders] if he thought the Democratic Party knew what it stood for. "You're asking a good question, and I can't give you a definitive answer," he said. "Certainly there are some people in the Democratic Party who want to maintain the status quo. They would rather go down with the Titanic so long as they have first-class seats." ...

[Mar 17, 2017] Everyone loves Bernie Sanders. Except, it seems, the Democratic party

Mar 17, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
anne : March 17, 2017 at 08:24 AM , 2017 at 08:24 AM
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/mar/17/everyone-loves-bernie-sanders-except-democratic-party

March 17, 2017

Everyone loves Bernie Sanders. Except, it seems, the Democratic party
A new poll found he is the most popular politician in America. But instead of embracing his message, establishment Democrats continue to resist him
By Trevor Timm - Guardian

If you look at the numbers, Bernie Sanders is the most popular politician in America – and it's not even close. Yet bizarrely, the Democratic party – out of power across the country and increasingly irrelevant – still refuses to embrace him and his message. It's increasingly clear they do so at their own peril.

A new Fox News poll out this week shows Sanders has a +28 net favorability rating among the US population, dwarfing all other elected politicians on both ends of the political spectrum. And he's even more popular among the vaunted "independents", where he is at a mind boggling +41.

This poll is not just an aberration. Look at this Huffington Post chart that has tracked Sanders' favorability rating over time, ever since he gained national prominence in 2015 when he started running for the Democratic nomination. The more people got to know him, they more they liked him – the exact opposite of what his critics said would happen when he was running against Clinton.

One would think with numbers like that, Democratic politicians would be falling all over themselves to be associated with Sanders, especially considering the party as a whole is more unpopular than the Republicans and even Donald Trump right now. Yet instead of embracing his message, the establishment wing of the party continues to resist him at almost every turn, and they seem insistent that they don't have to change their ways to gain back the support of huge swaths of the country.

Politico ran a story just this week featuring Democratic officials fretting over the fact that Sanders supporters may upend their efforts to retake governorships in southern states by insisting those candidates adopt Sanders' populist policies – seemingly oblivious to the fact that Sanders plays well in some of those states too.

Sanders' effect on Trump voters can be seen in a gripping town hall this week that MSNBC's Chris Hayes hosted with him in West Virginia – often referred to as "Trump country" – where the crowd ended up giving him a rousing ovation after he talked about healthcare being a right of all people and that we are the only industrialized nation in the world who doesn't provide healthcare as a right to all its people.

But hand wringing by Democratic officials over 2018 candidates is really just the latest example: the establishment wing of the party aggressively ran another opponent against Keith Ellison, Sanders' choice to run the Democratic National Committee, seemingly with the primary motivation to keep the party away from Sanders' influence.

They've steadfastly refused to take giant corporations head on in the public sphere and wouldn't even return to an Obama-era rule that banned lobbyist money from funding the DNC that was rescinded last year. And despite the broad popularity of the government guaranteeing health care for everyone, they still have not made any push for a Medicare-for-all plan that Sanders has long called for as a rebuttal to Republicans' attempt to dismantle Obamacare.

Democrats seem more than happy to put all the blame of the 2016 election on a combination of Russia and James Comey and have engaged in almost zero introspection on the root causes of the larger reality: they are also out of power in not the presidency, but both also houses of Congress, governorships and state houses across the country as well.

As Politico reported on the Democrats' post-Trump strategy in February, "Democratic aides say they will eventually shift to a positive economic message that Rust Belt Democrats can run on". However: "For now, aides say, the focus is on slaying the giant and proving to the voters who sent Trump into the White House why his policies will fail."

In other words, they're doubling down on the exact same failing strategy that Clinton used in the final months of the campaign. Sanders himself put it this wayin his usual blunt style in an interview with New York magazine this week – when asked about whether the Democrats can adapt to the political reality, he said: "There are some people in the Democratic Party who want to maintain the status quo. They would rather go down with the Titanic so long as they have first-class seats." ...

Peter K. -> anne... , March 17, 2017 at 09:08 AM
Krugman and Vox have been attacking Sanders regularly on behalf of the establishment Democrats.

I thought it was interesting that PGL and Sanjait said they don't agree with Krugman's latest blog post, but they refuse to discuss exactly why Krugman is wrong.

"This ties in with an important recent piece by Zack Beauchamp on the striking degree to which left-wing economics fails, in practice, to counter right-wing populism; basically, Sandersism has failed everywhere it has been tried. Why?

The answer, presumably, is that what we call populism is really in large degree white identity politics, which can't be addressed by promising universal benefits. Among other things, these "populist" voters now live in a media bubble, getting their news from sources that play to their identity-politics desires, which means that even if you offer them a better deal, they won't hear about it or believe it if told. For sure many if not most of those who gained health coverage thanks to Obamacare have no idea that's what happened.

That said, taking the benefits away would probably get their attention, and maybe even open their eyes to the extent to which they are suffering to provide tax cuts to the rich.

In Europe, right-wing parties probably don't face the same dilemma; they're preaching herrenvolk social democracy, a welfare state but only for people who look like you. In America, however, Trumpism is faux populism that appeals to white identity but actually serves plutocrats. That fundamental contradiction is now out in the open."

https://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2017/03/14/populism-and-the-politics-of-health/

[Mar 17, 2017] Neoliberal democrats would rather go down with the Titanic so long as they have first-class seats

Mar 17, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
libezkova : March 16, 2017 at 09:58 PM , 2017 at 09:58 PM
"Certainly there are some people in the Democratic Party who want to maintain the status quo. They would rather go down with the Titanic so long as they have first-class seats."

Charles Homans, NY Times Magazine, The New Party of No

[Mar 11, 2017] Apparently, most Democrats are now defending the CIA [and bashing the US constitution] and trashing WikiLeaks

CIA and militarism loving Democrats are what is called Vichy left...
Notable quotes:
"... "Apparently, most Democrats are now defending the CIA [and bashing the US constitution] and trashing WikiLeaks (who have never had to retract a single story in all their years). The brainwashing is complete. Take a valium and watch your Rachel Maddow [read your poor pk]. I can no longer help you. You have become The Borg." ..."
"... There is a large amount of ground between being a Victoria Nuland neocon hawk going around picking unnecessary fights with Russia and engaging in aggression overt or covert against her or her allies ..."
"... I happen to support reasonable engagement with Russia on matters of mutual interest, and I think there are many of those. I do not support cheerleading when Russia commits aggression against neighbors, which it has, and then lies about it. There is a middle ground, but you and ilsm both seem to have let your brains fall out of your heads onto the sidewalk and then stepped on them hard regarding all this. ..."
"... US Deep state analogy to Stalin's machinations against his rivals seems reasonable. ..."
Mar 11, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Clinton wing of Democratic Party was always undistinguishable from Vichy left

ilsm : March 11, 2017 at 03:26 AM

pk love the dog, the rest is same-o-same, jumped the shark Stalinist rant except instead of Putin! it's Ryan!!

reading vox.....

feed your cognitive dissonance

standards.......

ilsm -> ilsm... , March 11, 2017 at 04:18 AM
"Apparently, most Democrats are now defending the CIA [and bashing the US constitution] and trashing WikiLeaks (who have never had to retract a single story in all their years). The brainwashing is complete. Take a valium and watch your Rachel Maddow [read your poor pk]. I can no longer help you. You have become The Borg."

[my edits]

ken melvin said in reply to ilsm... , March 11, 2017 at 09:13 AM
Actually - Prof Rosser said it to you

Barkley Rosser :

anne and ilsm,

I am going to make one more point, a substantive one. There is a large amount of ground between being a Victoria Nuland neocon hawk going around picking unnecessary fights with Russia and engaging in aggression overt or covert against her or her allies and simply rolling over to be a patsy for the worst fort of RT propaganda and saying that there is no problem whatsoever with having a president who is in deep financial hock to a murderous lying Russian president and who has made inane and incomprehensible remarks about this, along with having staff and aides who lie to the public about their dealings with people from Russia.

I happen to support reasonable engagement with Russia on matters of mutual interest, and I think there are many of those. I do not support cheerleading when Russia commits aggression against neighbors, which it has, and then lies about it. There is a middle ground, but you and ilsm both seem to have let your brains fall out of your heads onto the sidewalk and then stepped on them hard regarding all this.

If you find this offensive or intimidating, anne, sorry, but I am not going to apologize. Frankly, I think you should apologize for the stupid and offensive things you have said on this subject, about which I do not think you have the intimately personal knowledge that I have.
Reply Wednesday, March 08, 2017 at 12:36 AM

Paine -> ilsm... , March 11, 2017 at 08:19 AM
My dear interlocutor
As a once overt and future sleeper cell Stalinist
I'm perplexed by your artful use of Stalinist

In my experience that label was restricted to pinko circles notably
Trotskyists pinning the dirty tag on various shades of commie types
On the other side of the great divide of the early thirties

Buy you !

To you it seems synonymous with Orwellian demons of all stripes

A part can of course stand in for a whole

But can uncle joe really stand in for the DLC ?

Paine -> Paine... , March 11, 2017 at 08:21 AM
The new left extended fascist to fit Hubert Humphrey
So I confess the stretch is conceivable but is it catalytic
RGC -> Paine... , March 11, 2017 at 08:31 AM
US Deep state analogy to Stalin's machinations against his rivals seems reasonable.

Maybe you are more a Bukharinist than Stalinist.

[Mar 11, 2017] The working and middle classes were decimated by neoliberals but somehow it is now the voters fault because they had thrown the neoliberal warmonger Hillary in the ditch

Mar 11, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
George H. Blackford -> EMichael... March 10, 2017 at 10:07 AM
Facts Liberal elites refuse to face:

a) In the 70s, a Dem congress began deregulating the financial system with the help of a Dem president.

b) In the 80s, a Dem congress continued deregulation and cut taxes on the rich, increased taxes on the not so rich, cut SS benefits and essential government programs, and abandoned the unions.

c) In the 90s, a Dem president reappointed Greenspan to the Fed, further deregulated and cut essential programs, and signed draconian crime, welfare, and student loan bills into law.

d) In 07, the Dems took back the congress and did nothing to hold accountable those who had led us into a war under false pretenses, turned us into a nation of torturers, and politicized the Justice Department as the concentration of income rose until the economy blew up in the fall of 08.

e) In 09 the Dems took complete control of the federal government and ignored students and homeowners as they bailed out the banks, passed a Heritage Foundation healthcare plan championed by the insurance and drug companies as incomes and wages plummeted.

The working and middle classes were decimated throughout this process, and, somehow, it's the voters' fault we ended up with a throw the bums out Trump instead of a more of the same Hillary? I don't think so!

Liberal elites are in a state of denial. It's time to wake up and face reality:
http://www.rweconomics.com/htm/Ch_1.htm
http://www.rweconomics.com/Deficit.htm
http://www.rweconomics.com/Sanders1.htm

Pinkybum -> George H. Blackford ... , March 10, 2017 at 08:43 AM
"The obvious solution for rising healthcare costs is either a public option or extending Medicare to younger and younger people, but Democrats, other than Sanders, refuse to offer or defend these solutions."

Medicare for all was not offered because politically it was a non-starter. The public option was offered and once the Republicans (and Democrats who might as well be Republicans) realized what it meant (out-competing insurance companies) they opposed it.

yuan -> Pinkybum... , March 10, 2017 at 09:32 AM
"and Democrats who might as well be Republicans"

people who try to equate these class traitors to all democrats are carrying their water.

[[House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) pledged at the time that the House bill would include a public option.15 Indeed, a public option offered through a private insurance exchange was included in all three versions of the bill passed by House committees in the summer of 2009 (House Ways and Means and House Education and Labor on 17 July 2009; House Energy and Commerce on 31 July 2009), as well as in the bill passed by the full House of Representatives on 7 November 2009 (the Affordable Health Care for America Act, HR 3962). A public option was also included in the bill passed by the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee on 15 July 2009 (the Affordable Health Choices Act, S 1679).

Senate Democrats were engaged in a highly contentious debate throughout the fall of 2009, and the political life of the public option changed almost daily. The debate reached a critical impasse in November 2009, when Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-CT), who usually caucuses with the Democrats, threatened to filibuster the Senate bill if it included a public option.

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) made last-minute attempts to introduce amendments to include a public option as the bill was about to be voted on by the Senate Finance Committee. Those failed, and there was no public option in either the bill that emerged from that committee or the bill that passed the full Senate on 24 December 2009]]

http://content.healthaffairs.org/content/29/6/1117.full

George H. Blackford -> yuan... , March 10, 2017 at 09:41 AM
My question is, why was this allowed to die there?

Why wasn't it raised as a campaign issue in the 2010, 2012, and 2014 elections, explained to the public, and fought for by the Democrats?

yuan -> George H. Blackford ... , March 10, 2017 at 09:47 AM
i think obama's conservatism played a huge role.
Pinkybum -> pgl... , March 10, 2017 at 12:29 PM
I agree. Medicare For All! Should have been the rallying cry from the start. The Democrats should have challenged the Republicans to argue against the logic of it and laid them bare but they didn't. If that was the starting point of any negotiations we might have a much better health insurance system now. I guess I have to blame Obama for the lack of leadership on that one.
pgl -> Pinkybum... , March 10, 2017 at 01:07 PM
'Medicare For All! Should have been the rallying cry from the start.'

Yep and it should have been the rallying cry in 1993.

run75441 -> George H. Blackford ... , March 10, 2017 at 07:07 PM
Hmmmm:

"The obvious solution for rising healthcare costs is either a public option or extending Medicare to younger and younger people, but Democrats, other than Sanders, refuse to offer or defend these solutions."

In either case, Congress has not allowed Medicare to negotiate costs completely and you believe they my allow a Public Option to do so???

George H. Blackford -> run75441... , March 10, 2017 at 10:25 PM
The point is that the public has never been given a choice. No one except Sanders has made this sort of thing a campaign issue, and the Democrats rejected Sanders. As a result, we ended up with a Republican congress and Trump.

[Mar 08, 2017] Political Misfortune Anatomy of Democratic Party Failure in Clinton's Campaign 2016

Mar 08, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
justanotherprogressive , March 6, 2017 at 12:00 pm

This is just another example of how Big Data can fail. All polling is is the use of Big Data – weighting factors are just another name for algorithms. Unlike Cambridge Analytica which was going outside its data to make projections, the pollsters insisted on using the wrong model to determine human behavior – and that is just as bad. Instead of watching who the polls said was in the lead, I was watching the error analyses. The model of how people vote had changed, but polling companies just didn't notice (or perhaps didn't want to notice). Certainly the elections of 2010, 2012, and 2014 should have alerted them to changing trends and model instability and their error analyses should have been much higher than they were. But putting data into a garbage compactor just gives you more garbage .

clarky90 , March 6, 2017 at 1:25 pm

People assume that "Big Data" is science. It is not. They are "models", like kid's Lego models, that reflect the consciousness of the "Model's Creator" (This kid seriously likes battleships, or cosy little houses!) Sort of like the way IQ tests reflect the culture, class and race of its creator. (You usually do not get points for identifying a bird by it's bird-song or differentiating edible plants from the inedible, by taste/smell).

This proves that most Big Polling companies are run by Clintonistas, just as Big Media is run by Clintonistas. Their polling numbers still show that Trump is losing, to this day. They are truly exceptional people. (In a weird and creepy way)

This also implies that Lambert possesses that very rare quality- The Open Mind , that can see through powerful/dense/stinky bullshit, with x-ray vision.

applauds and stands respectfully , cheers

susan the other , March 6, 2017 at 2:39 pm

It's amazing how much more complex a humanities approach is compared to a stone cold set of unemotional variables. To wit: Trump won because the "rural" component of the LA Times was exaggerated – so then what does that say for the urban component who where almost as down-and-out. This is logic karma. The humanities guy, using a tree of almost-psychic analysis gets it right. Love it a lot. And there is some connection to our favorite Mr. Professor, Mark Blyth when he describes these fed-up electorates (those betrayed by neoliberalism) as "no-shows." Well, we could go on and on. Truth becomes the fractal analysis of politics.

vlade , March 6, 2017 at 3:51 pm

"The humanities guy, using a tree of almost-psychic analysis gets it right".

I've got some bad news for you. Decision trees are part and parcel of Machine Learning techniques.

And polling has nothing to do with Big Data per se – sample of a few thousand is not Big Data in any way form or shape, it's just statistics. And while statistics doesn't have any bias, statisticians (and polsters) do (as do, for the matter, any and all humans).

justanotherprogressive , March 6, 2017 at 7:24 pm

Your comment reminds me of some data science jokes going around:
1. Data science is statistics done on a Mac.
2. A data scientist is a statistician living in San Francisco.
3. A data scientist is a person who knows more about statistics than a computer scientist and knows more about computer science than a statistitian.
(I'd give credit to whoever started these jokes if I could only figure out who they were ..)

Statistics is a big part of Big Data – it cannot be done without it. You'd probably be surprised to know that polling is a part of data science. And you'd probably don't know that the first documented use of Big Data was by Tycho Brache/Kepler ..
It is important to understand what Big Data/Data Science is since it is here and it isn't going away. Curiosity Stream has an excellent video, "The Human Faces of Big Data" that is well worth the watch.
And as always, the worst thing a person can do is give up their ability to think critically when presented with Big Data results, which are not truths, but only patterns based on the data given. GIGO still applies .

justanotherprogressive , March 6, 2017 at 7:40 pm

I need to correct my next to last sentence to read: .which are not truths, but only patterns based on the data given AND the algorithm used ..
Sometimes the data is good, but the algorithm is bad and vice versa

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 10:57 am

The data plugged in to the decision tree was done so in a very humanities major-y way. Yes, I know what a decision tree is.

Rosario , March 6, 2017 at 8:00 pm

I have to remind myself every time I see data modelling political and cultural phenomenon that these particular models can or will work well until they don't. They always operate within a political and cultural paradigm and when that paradigm is broken or even just faltering the methods (which are heavily biased by that paradigm) fall apart. I can't say it is apophenia as the data/patterns are relevant within an existing paradigm. Maybe it is apophenia in reverse. The culture establishes an agreed upon framework thus informing the modeller and skewing their modelling. So the culture creates the patterns on a largely nonscientific basis and the modeller simply interprets them to predict the culture's future behavior. It seems like an exercise in futility.

shinola , March 6, 2017 at 1:25 pm

While the "horse race" data is interesting & kinda fun to dissect in retrospect, I don't think it really captures the essence of what happened. Boiled down to 2 factors:

1) Trump was the "bomb thrower" candidate. First he blew up the R's establishment candidates in the primaries & then blew up the D's hyper-establishment candidate in the general.

2) HRC was a terrible and, ultimately, incompetent candidate. Her palpable sense of entitlement & arrogance was quite off-putting to a significant portion of the electorate. That she won the popular vote but still managed to lose the election says it all about her campaign strategy.

Trump's election was a giant middle finger to the "politics-as-usual" crowd.
(Unfortunately Trump is really very "establishment" – he just ran a non-traditional campaign. I'll be rather surprised if he makes beyond 2020)

Code Name D , March 6, 2017 at 3:00 pm

I suspect there was a lot more neo-liberal working behind the sceine that we might suspect. Polling companies are a lot like the acounting firms for the banks – they are paid to overlook acounting issues. Those that don't, do not get to keep their contracts. The polling firms were paied not to measure the mood of the electorate, but to produce polls that conformed to the narative. And the narative was that Clintion was going to win by a landslide.

The polls were just another tool for manufacturing consent.

[Mar 07, 2017] On journalism and Democratic Party fiasco

Notable quotes:
"... The constraint on punditry is that they are all a bunch of high school mean girls. They spend just as much time gossiping and trashing each other as teenagers. Anyone who doesn't parrot faux objectivity, which is little more than the D party line, can expect to be ostracized and not given opportunities for advancement. ..."
"... They all pretend they can divine absolutely everything from polls, enabling them to forego any real reporting in favor of some number crunching or referencing fivethirtyeight. Polls have so many problems in the first place, that to try and extrapolate to what the electorate is really saying is a fool's errand. Polls don't let people say that they would rather be boiled in oil than elect the wife of the guy that laid the groundwork for the GFC, or that they really hate both of them and as long as it looks like Clinton is going to win I might not bother to show up. They certainly don't have an option for: I see how this country works, I see how corrupt 95% of the elites are, I see how they have had success in their lives and pulled up the ladders of opportunity behind them, I see how they think they are peers with the titans of industry and are willing to forgive them of just about any misbehavior no matter how consequential and despite all that the titans think of them as the paid help. I see how willing they are to make life harder for the majority just to fellatiate their donors; leaving rhetoric and shame as the only tools to get compliance and votes. ..."
"... I think it has to do with the knowledge that she holds grudges and the level of inevitability she was able to command. Anyone who dared to go even an inch beyond the mean girl hive mind could be assured zero access in her Whitehouse and to have future opportunities for advancement disappear. ..."
"... It's just not that hard: the Democrats bent the rules and thwarted what people wanted in order to run Hillary because it was her turn, ignoring the negatives that were present before the inept campaign increased them. ..."
Mar 07, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
UserFriendly , March 6, 2017 at 1:41 pm

I went on two email rants tangential to this if anyone is interested, I enjoyed them.
On journalism:

The constraint on punditry is that they are all a bunch of high school mean girls. They spend just as much time gossiping and trashing each other as teenagers. Anyone who doesn't parrot faux objectivity, which is little more than the D party line, can expect to be ostracized and not given opportunities for advancement.

They all pretend they can divine absolutely everything from polls, enabling them to forego any real reporting in favor of some number crunching or referencing fivethirtyeight. Polls have so many problems in the first place, that to try and extrapolate to what the electorate is really saying is a fool's errand. Polls don't let people say that they would rather be boiled in oil than elect the wife of the guy that laid the groundwork for the GFC, or that they really hate both of them and as long as it looks like Clinton is going to win I might not bother to show up. They certainly don't have an option for: I see how this country works, I see how corrupt 95% of the elites are, I see how they have had success in their lives and pulled up the ladders of opportunity behind them, I see how they think they are peers with the titans of industry and are willing to forgive them of just about any misbehavior no matter how consequential and despite all that the titans think of them as the paid help. I see how willing they are to make life harder for the majority just to fellatiate their donors; leaving rhetoric and shame as the only tools to get compliance and votes.

At the end of the day, polls are like horoscopes, a kernel of truth but you can see what you want to see. Which is why we were subjected to copious think pieces about Bernie Bros and Racist Trump voters that are little more than polling cross tabs woven into whatever narrative would best help Clinton.

But why Clinton? It certainly isn't because there was a cozy relationship before this campaign. Note this quote from Politico :

But to this day she's surrounded herself with media conspiracy theorists who remain some of her favorite confidants, urged wealthy allies to bankroll independent organizations tasked with knee-capping reporters perceived as unfriendly, withdrawn into a gilded shell when attacked and rolled her eyes at several generations of aides who suggested she reach out to journalists rather than just disdaining them. Not even being nice to her in print has been a guarantor of access; reporters likely to write positive stories have been screened as ruthlessly as perceived enemies, dismissed as time-sucking sycophants or pretend-friends.

I think it has to do with the knowledge that she holds grudges and the level of inevitability she was able to command. Anyone who dared to go even an inch beyond the mean girl hive mind could be assured zero access in her Whitehouse and to have future opportunities for advancement disappear. But it certainly isn't above her to play favorites and reword good coverage with access, even to the point of dictating adjectives to reporters .

UserFriendly , March 6, 2017 at 1:52 pm

The second email was to 538 because they put up a job listing, which I used as an opportunity to get an email read by them.

Well, I don't have any experience editing or writing (except as a hobby) but I do have a very extensive knowledge of current events, political trends, polling, voting methods, and heterodox economics. Since it's doubtful you would consider me for a policy editor position I just thought I would offer some constructive criticism.

1. Instead of using your models to display the odds of a candidate winning if the election were held today, incorporate the polling error and historical trends to make a graph that starts with lines for the past and ends with probability cones into the future. You may know that polls are only for a snapshot in time, but the vast majority of the TV pundits who use this site as a bible don't. Then they go and decide who gets coverage based on it. This is especially important when you have a well known candidate vs lesser known ones. This is a key reason Sanders didn't do as well and why we have a president Trump. They also couldn't emphasize enough how unelectable he was despite the polls constantly saying otherwise which really was the one thing that sank him . For some reason about 40% of the country says they will vote even if they don't care about the outcome. I'm sure in reality it is much less, even more so for a primary. However, one of the reason politics is so dysfunctional right now is that no one in their right mind would run for congress or anything else when only 63/435 house districts had a margin under 15%. Any damage you do to the incumbency effect is a huge plus.

2. Alternative voting. Since your site is all about data I can't for the life of me understand why you haven't done a dive into alternative voting methods. It there is one thing this election should have taught us it's that first past the post (FPTP) is a creation from hell that needs to die. Then the only other option widely expressed is Instant Run Off (IRV), which is just ever so slightly better than FPTP. Would it really be too much to ask to dive into Score Voting , 3-2-1 voting , Condorcet, and Schultz? And maybe look at some of the work being done to model voter satisfaction with those systems.

3. Improving Polling. Clearly you have contacts at all the major polling firms I have absolutely no clue why you haven't pressured them to gather better data. Since the elites in this country absolutely refuse to be within a 5 mile radius of real people, they rely on polls to take the temperature of the public. I'd say that hasn't been working so well. I have seen polls where they find out your stance on ACA, give both side some of the opposing arguments, and then ask again and manage to flip like 20% from each side. Any poll that is going to ask our suboptimally informed electorate something about a hot button issue should give a reason or two for and against before getting a response. Polls that are meant to determine a participant's preference on a range of hot button issues really should be done with quadratic voting .
Which brings me to horse race polls. Just to get a baseline about how dysfunctional FPTP is I would have loved to see a poll in the middle of the Dem primary ask "regardless of who you plan on voting for, who do you want to be the next president?" Primary season would also be a great time to test out some of the alternative voting methods mentioned above, most of which would eliminate the need for primaries entirely. But if we are stuck with FPTP I would love for the follow up question to be "In one sentence why do you plan to vote for that person?" That would really be invaluable data.

I could probably go on for another hour with things that I think you could do to personally improve the miserable state this country is in and will continue to be in for the foreseeable future, but I'll spare you. Thanks for reading this far if you did.

TheCatSaid , March 7, 2017 at 10:13 am

I'm glad you posted this! I wasn't familiar with quadratic voting and the link is quite interesting.

It seems to have some similarities with ranked preference voting. That said, I agree with Peter Emerson that in any choice there should be at least 3 options to choose from, and those options should come from the voting base.

Choosing from how much I agree or disagree with a single proposal is still a poor option–it depends what the alternatives are if one disagrees, or at least some basics about the implementation if one agrees.

Using the questions from the QV video as an example, in some questions the nature of the potential alternatives might affect results more than others. (For example, "Do you want to repeal the ACA?" How a person answers might vary considerably depending on the alternatives.)

DWD , March 6, 2017 at 2:03 pm

Lambert,

It's just not that hard: the Democrats bent the rules and thwarted what people wanted in order to run Hillary because it was her turn, ignoring the negatives that were present before the inept campaign increased them.

People reacted in a predictable manner.

End of story.

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 10:52 am

I only partially agree with your alternative narrative; see the forthcoming post.

BobW , March 6, 2017 at 2:15 pm

I read that book a long time ago. What I remember (perhaps incorrectly) is that there are simple, compound and complex failures. One error causes a simple failure, two a compound and three a complex. Complex failures are usually catastrophic. The errors were 1) failure to learn 2) failure to anticipate 3) failure to adapt. Perhaps a bit overly structural, but it did stick in my mind for years.

Chris , March 6, 2017 at 3:57 pm

James Reason's 'Swiss cheese' theory ( http://130.88.20.21/trasnusafe/pdfs/HumanErrorsModelsandManagement.pdf )

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 10:54 am

> 1) failure to learn 2) failure to anticipate 3) failure to adapt.

Those are the types of failure, and those are reasonable enough buckets. But their analysis of how multiple pathways to failure is to my mind far more supple - and you have to treat case case separately.

dcblogger , March 6, 2017 at 2:58 pm

reminder that Democratic dysfunction goes bac a long way

L , March 6, 2017 at 3:24 pm

While I generally agree with your analysis I think that your timeline is missing one key inflection point, the ACA. During September and October some states began announcing pricing changes for the coming year. That fed into the rolling narrative that the ACA was collapsing, or in a death spiral, or otherwise in trouble right around the same time that radical opportunist True Patriot(tm) Jim Comey was bringing up Weiners.

Others have argued (can't find the links right now sorry) that this was more meaningful than the emails and my own informal poll of Trump voters is consistent with that. None of them mention Bhengazi or the emails except as general background to her unsavoriness, meaning that the damage was done long before October. But they do bring up the "collapsing state exchanges" and "unreasonable price surges" as current problems.

KurtisMayfield , March 6, 2017 at 6:11 pm

I agree 100% . The ACA timing was beautiful from a political perspective. The old question "Are you better off now" was answered with a resounding no.

Too bad no one is going to fix this health care system. It has to die before it can be reborn. Unfortunately the human toll will be horrible.

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 10:55 am

I agree that the email furor could be masking the effect of an ObamaCare rate hike, but I have never seen polling to this effect; if somebody has, please add! There are a lot of events happening simultaneously, and then the press will pick one and make that the cause.

Hayek's Heelbiter , March 6, 2017 at 3:26 pm

Bottom line, people in rural western Virginia (with which I am more familiar) might not have even heard the term "neoliberal" [by the way, why do we use his portmanteau of two very positive words to describe a loathsome philosophy? Why don't we just call it what it is, "neofeudalism" or possibly more accurately, "archeofeudalism"], but these "deplorables" do know that their lives suck more than they ever have due to their lives and livelihood being drained out of them by the 1% and the Accela Corridor Class, of which HRC was the examplar par excellence.

Just ignore all the polls, all the verbiage, all the analysis. Bottom line: Trump is the proverbial "Ham Sandwich."

IMHO

Mel , March 6, 2017 at 8:32 pm

The original liberal revolution (circa 1776 and later) mobilized the power of the bourgeoisie, money, and markets to correct the inadequacies of the remains of the feudal society based on agriculture and land. The neoliberal revolution aims to mobilize the power of money and markets to correct the inadequacies of the liberal society based on money and markets. Strategically, to put a price on anything that's left without one, and eliminate the chances for Polanyi's "double movement".

George Phillies , March 6, 2017 at 3:34 pm

You write: "all but the Daybreak poll got the popular vote outcome wrong. "

Ummh, your sentence exactly disagrees with your data. Almost all polls got the sign of the popular vote total correct, with Clinton leading Trump by several points. The average (Huffington Post does this) of a lot of polls was very close indeed to Trump's performance, with Trump having fewer popular vote than Clinton by close to 3%.

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 10:50 am

Fixed, thanks.

I Have Strange Dreams , March 6, 2017 at 4:53 pm

Trump never said he actually grabbed women by the pussy:

"And when you're a star they let you do it. You can do anything Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything."

Sad thing is, Trump is probably right. As the old pussy-grabber Jefferson said, "The government you elect is the government you deserve."

john c. halasz , March 6, 2017 at 6:19 pm

I'm surprised in your narrative inflection points, you don't note Oct. 24 as a key date, the day the administration announced that Obamacare premiums would increase by an average of 22%. Though it didn't receive as much coverage from the horse-race media, it seems to me that if there was one single event that tipped the race to Trump, it was that announcement.

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 11:00 am

Because I don't recall polling to that effect (and you know my priors; I would have been very happy to beat that drum).

john c. halasz , March 7, 2017 at 2:59 pm

I didn't follow the polling much in real-time, but my recollection from post-mortems is that Trump received a number of bounces up at inflection events, but then his poll numbers subsided back. But in the aftermath of Oct. 24 his numbers began to rise without subsiding later. The graphs you posted are consistent with that, except that it's attributed to the Comey letter,, which received a lot of media play, but probably was of lesser importance to voters, as opposed to its importance as a Dembot excuse.

sharonsj , March 6, 2017 at 6:22 pm

In Florida, Trump got 113,000 more votes than Hillary. However, election officials report that 130,000 voters refused to vote for either candidate and wrote in the names of various people and cartoon characters. The usual "vote for the lesser of two evils" just isn't working any more.

Carl , March 6, 2017 at 9:00 pm

Oh nice! I didn't know that .

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 11:00 am

Got a link?

Paul Greenwood , March 7, 2017 at 7:32 am

Why not look at how Bill Clinton diverted the Democratic Party towards Wall Street and Oligarchs and left behind huge swathes of traditional voters ? The story of the string-puller from Arkansas and his connections, whether to get him a Rhodes Scholarship and multiple draft deferments, or his visit to Russia in Dec 1969, or his governorship and its strange association with Rich Mountain Aviation in Mena, AK.

This was where the Democratic Party turned away from its voter base and Blair copied this in UK with New Labour, a Neo-Marxist front facilitating Financial Excess

http://louisianavoice.com/2011/02/14/603/

http://www.arktimes.com/arkansas/what-does-hutchinson-know-about-arkansass-biggest-drug-smuggler/Content?oid=3206051

http://www.arktimes.com/RockCandy/archives/2014/02/13/ron-howard-to-direct-movie-about-arkansass-most-notorious-drug-smuggler-barry-seal

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 11:01 am

You're asking why I didn't write another post. Basically, because I wanted to write about penguins, and not peacocks. The focus is on the campaign, not on everything that's been wrong with the Democrat Party since forever (though there'll be a bit more of that in the forthcoming post).

oy , March 7, 2017 at 8:36 am

One of these days pundits are going to stop treating the election like some damn sporting event, focusing on momentum and god knows what instead of where the candidates stand on the issues of importance. When that happens, maybe we'll start electing candidates that are interested and capable of solving problems instead of candidates merely striving to stroke their egos.

oh , March 7, 2017 at 1:24 pm

I commend you for your optimism, However, the two party (actually one party) duopoly will insist on nominating neo-liberal candidates paid for by yuuge corporate bribes. May I suggest that you look elsewhere if you want candidates capable of solving the people's problems rather than the corporate ones.

Steven Greenberg , March 7, 2017 at 9:49 am

The trouble with social science is that the subjects read about themselves and change behavior based on what they read. This is the property that George Soros calls reflexive. Even physical science at the quantum mechanical level has as a basic principle that the act of measuring something changes it.

Yes, even George Soros can be right about a thing or two.

TheCatSaid , March 7, 2017 at 10:24 am

Interesting analysis. What would add considerably is if we had some way of also charting other events, in particular election fraud events (including voter suppression, computer tabulator rigging, etc.) and other election interference mechanisms such as media coverage / non-coverage / miscoverage.

Not to mention the primary problems. Or the issues having to do with "candidate selection" in the first place.

Analysis of the election without examining the information made available to voters, and with no hope of knowing how voters actually did vote (hint–we don't know this from official election results), is dodgy to say the least.

At the minimum the glaring gaps in information (e.g. about actual vote tallies) should be acknowledged.

Lambert Strether Post author , March 7, 2017 at 11:03 am

Did you read the title of the post? That often gives a good indiction of the subject matter to be found therein. You want me to write another post. Perhaps one day.

TheCatSaid , March 7, 2017 at 11:32 am

The presence of actual election malfeasance for decades (and more–when have we ever had clean elections under public scrutiny?) means that elegant analysis such as yours perversely perpetuates the acceptance of phony election data. That's why some form of acknowledgement is needed somewhere in the post. Not a different post or a different topic, just a mention that there are . . . issues.

I would love your approach if only it didn't contain the unspoken presumption of official election results bearing any resemblance to actual votes cast! Maybe yes, maybe no, depending on the precinct and specific election. We should not advocate people continuing to blindly accept official election results regardless of whether the results were expected, unexpected, close, non-close, matching polls, not matching polls. Analysis that does not acknowledge the absence of meaningful election scrutiny inadvertently perpetuates the problem.

It's like doing financial analysis on an economy where all data is submitted by companies with zero requirement for backup financial data. (Not to mention then carrying out "polls" of what "financial analyses" we believe or prefer!) We would never accept that kind of "data" and subsequent "analysis" in a financial context.

Scott , March 7, 2017 at 12:40 pm

I see it as a contest for power between two jet setters. Both had Boeings. One was owned by the candidate, bigger & black & red.
The other was some smaller, and nondescript blue.
I'd like to see the number of flights and where they went compared.

gizzardboy , March 7, 2017 at 3:41 pm

Concerning your inflection points, Lambert: I remember from a while back that Empty Wheel had a chart that showed a major shift in sentiment toward Trump when new higher Obamacare costs were announced for 2017. Sorry, but I don't know how to run down that link.

Sound of the Suburbs , March 7, 2017 at 4:14 pm

It's bad now, but it could be worse. Project Fear. OK, Trump is a lunatic but how does that compare with the status quo? Let's give the lunatic a go. How bad can it get?

[Mar 07, 2017] The Democratic party is officially dead

Notable quotes:
"... Until the Democrats reform their leadership and recommit to working people again, they will have no future as a party. ..."
"... Brad and Larry and Paul are a big part of the status quo for the liberal establishment, and the incredible failure of leadership they have achieved. ..."
"... Continuing to argue about it here, with the quick resort to personal attacks and name-calling, is irrelevant, because the Democratic party is dead. Seriously, how big of a loss can they take before the leadership gets tossed? It was not just the presidency. They have lost almost everything. ..."
"... Don't count the Democratic Party out yet. Politicians need to make a living. After the Civil War the Democratic Party had to scrape together what it could find that Republicans had tossed out with the garbage. ..."
"... So, the Democratic Party took to supporting immigrants and unions. Times have changed and the Democratic Party lost the unions to corporatism, but tried to make it up with racial politics. ..."
"... The Democratic Party made a big mistake abandoning the interests of ordinary working people, but that is what their corporate donors demanded. So, it is time for a makeover and if the next one does not take then they will be back at it again because politicians have to make a living. ..."
"... The Democratic party, much less so than the Republican party, is not homogenous. All the things you ascribe to them past or present don't apply to most of their current members or operatives. ..."
Feb 20, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

Jesse : February 20, 2017 at 01:43 PM

Until the Democrats reform their leadership and recommit to working people again, they will have no future as a party.

Brad and Larry and Paul are a big part of the status quo for the liberal establishment, and the incredible failure of leadership they have achieved.

Continuing to argue about it here, with the quick resort to personal attacks and name-calling, is irrelevant, because the Democratic party is dead. Seriously, how big of a loss can they take before the leadership gets tossed? It was not just the presidency. They have lost almost everything.

http://jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com/2017/02/jimmy-dore-and-thomas-frank-on-what.html

RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> Jesse... , February 20, 2017 at 02:10 PM
Don't count the Democratic Party out yet. Politicians need to make a living. After the Civil War the Democratic Party had to scrape together what it could find that Republicans had tossed out with the garbage.

So, the Democratic Party took to supporting immigrants and unions. Times have changed and the Democratic Party lost the unions to corporatism, but tried to make it up with racial politics.

That worked some, but the problem with identity politics is that eventually people get their rights and freedoms and next thing you know they want jobs and college educations for their children.

The Democratic Party made a big mistake abandoning the interests of ordinary working people, but that is what their corporate donors demanded. So, it is time for a makeover and if the next one does not take then they will be back at it again because politicians have to make a living.

cm -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 20, 2017 at 04:33 PM
The Democratic party, much less so than the Republican party, is not homogenous. All the things you ascribe to them past or present don't apply to most of their current members or operatives.

It is one of the pernicious aspects of an effectively two-party system that all progressives have a strong motivation or even necessity to associate themselves with the "least bad" party. By way of official narrative the Democrats definitely fit the bill, even though they contain a lot of "co-opted" (if not corrupted) establishment baggage. That just happens with any major party - elites and interest groups that nominally stay out of politics but factually participate and not just a little are never resting.

In Germany, the 80's (perhaps late 70s?) saw an ascendancy of the Green party which was strongly associated with environmentalism, and by implication resistance to then prevalent politics, social mores, etc. They were successful as environmentalism and (I would say secondarily but that can be debated) civil/individual liberties and gender/ethnic equality which they also featured big time were themes that found wide appeal, and the time was ripe for them (e.g. environmental degradation had become undeniable, and gender/ethnic discrimination had become recognized as a factor hindering progress, aside from just fairness concerns).

A few decades later (and starting even a few years after the success) there was a noticeable bifurcation in the Greens - it turned out they were not all on the same page regarding all social issues. A number of Greens "defected" from the party and associated themselves with Red (Social Democrats, equivalent of US Democrats) or Black (Christian Democrats, equivalent of US Republicans) - showing that environmental or general (dimensions of) equal opportunity concerns are perhaps orthogonal to stands on other more or less specific social issues (or if one wants to be more cynical, that some people are careerist and not so much about principles - that exists but I would prefer (with little proof) to think it doesn't explain the larger pattern).

[Mar 04, 2017] Update on Trumps Pro-Russiaism

Notable quotes:
"... Gordon claimed that Trump said he did not "want to go to World War III over Ukraine" during that meeting, Acosta said. ..."
Mar 04, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
im1dc : March 03, 2017 at 05:45 PM , 2017 at 05:45 PM
Update re Trump's Pro-Russiaism

This shows Trump and his highest campaign officials at the time complicit in pro-Russian spin and from those in contact with Russia in the Trump campaign

Impeachment charge stuff imo

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/dc/jd-gordon-change-story-gop-platform-ukraine-amendment

"Trump Ally Drastically Changes Story About Altering GOP Platform On Ukraine"

By Allegra Kirkland....March 3, 2017....2:16 PM EDT

"In a significant reversal, a Trump campaign official on Thursday told CNN that he personally advocated for softening the language on Ukraine in the GOP platform at the Republican National Convention, and that he did so on behalf of the President.nnb877

CNN's Jim Acosta reported on air that J.D. Gordon, the Trump campaign's national security policy representative at the RNC, told him that he made the change to include language that he claimed "Donald Trump himself wanted and advocated for" at a March 2016 meeting at then-unfinished Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C.

Gordon claimed that Trump said he did not "want to go to World War III over Ukraine" during that meeting, Acosta said.

Yet Gordon had told Business Insider in January that he "never left" the side table where he sat monitoring the national security subcommittee meeting, where a GOP delegate's amendment calling for the provision of "lethal defense weapons" to the Ukrainian army was tabled. At the time, Gordon said "neither Mr. Trump nor [former campaign manager] Mr. [Paul] Manafort were involved in those sort of details, as they've made clear."

Discussion of changes to the platform, which drew attention to the ties to a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine that fueled Manafort's resignation as Trump's campaign chairman, resurfaced Thursday in a USA Today story. The newspaper revealed that Gordon and Carter Page, another former Trump adviser, met with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak at the GOP convention.

Trump and his team have long insisted that his campaign had no contact with Russian officials during the 2016 race, and that they were not behind softening the language on Ukraine in the Republican Party platform."...

libezkova -> im1dc... , March 03, 2017 at 08:30 PM
This is not an update re: "Trump's Pro-Russiaism".

This is an update of your complete lack of understanding of political situation.

There was a pretty cold and nasty calculation on Trump's part to split Russia-China alliance which does threaten the USA global hegemony. Now those efforts are discredited and derailed. Looks like the US neoliberal elite is slightly suicidal. But that's good: the sooner we get rid of neoliberalism, the better.

Sill Dems hysteria (in association with some Repugs like war hawks John McCain and Lindsey Graham) does strongly smells with neo-McCarthyism. McCain and Graham are probably playing this dirty game out of pure enthusiasm: Trump does not threatens MIC from which both were elected. He just gave them all the money they wanted. But for Dems this is en essential smoke screen to hide their fiasco and blame evil Russians.

In other words citing Marx: "History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce. "

This farce of making Russians a scapegoat for all troubles does make some short-term political sense as it distracts from the fact the Dems were abandoned by its base. And it unites the nation providing some political support for chickenhawks in US Congress for the next elections.

But in a long run the price might be a little bit too high. If Russian and China formalize their alliance this is the official end for the US neoliberal empire. Britain will jump the sinking ship first, because they do not have completely stupid elite.

BTW preventing Cino-Russian alliance is what British elite always tried to do (and was successful) in the past -- but in their time the main danger for them was the alliance of Germany and Russia -- two major continental powers.

Still short-termism is a feature of US politics, and we can do nothing against those forces that fuel the current anti-Russian hysteria.

The evil rumors at the time of original McCarthyism hysteria were that this was at least partially a smoke screen designed to hide smuggling of Nazi scientists and intelligence operatives into the USA (McCarthy was from Wisconsin, the state in German immigrant majority from which famous anti-WWI voice Robert M. La Follette was elected ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_M._La_Follette_Sr.))

So here there might well be also some hidden motives, because everybody, including even you understands that "Trump is in the pocket of Russians" hypothesis is pure propaganda (BTW Hillary did take bribes from Russian oligarchs, that's proven, but Caesar's wife must be above suspicion).

im1dc -> libezkova... , March 03, 2017 at 07:44 PM
What we are witnessing is the truth coming out, too slowly for some of us, but it surely will come out eventually despite the best efforts of Trump's WH, Gang, and his Republican lackies to cover it up.
im1dc -> im1dc... , March 03, 2017 at 08:05 PM
Serious question, what do you believe to be Director Comey's fingerprints on all of this?
libezkova -> im1dc... , March 03, 2017 at 08:59 PM
You probably would be better off sticking to posting music from YouTube then trying to understand complex political events and posting political junk from US MSM in pretty prominent economic blog (overtaking Fred)

Especially taking into account the fact that English is the only language you know and judging from your posts you do not have degrees in either economics or political science (although some people here with computer science background proved to be shrewd analysts of both economic and political events; cm is one example).

Although trying to read British press will not hurt you, they do provide a better coverage of US political events then the USA MSM. Even neoliberal Guardian. So if you can't fight your urge to repost political junk please try to do it from British press.

As for your question: in 20 years we might know something about who played what hand in this dirty poker, but even this is not given (JFK assassination is a classic example here; Gulf of Tonkin incident is another)

[Feb 27, 2017] Tom Perez Elected Head of DNC

Notable quotes:
"... isn't going to wor ..."
"... isn't going to wor ..."
"... is all that works. ..."
"... and Haim Saban's opinion matters more than millions of BernieCrats because money. ..."
"... The Dems are set up pretty well for 2018. ..."
"... "We lost this election eight years ago," concludes Michael Slaby, the campaign's chief technology officer. "Our party became a national movement focused on general elections, and we lost touch with nonurban, noncoastal communities. There is a straight line between our failure to address the culture and systemic failures of Washington and this election result." ..."
"... The question of why-why the president and his team failed to activate the most powerful political weapon in their arsenal. ..."
"... Obama's army was eager to be put to work. Of the 550,000 people who responded to the survey, 86 percent said they wanted to help Obama pass legislation through grassroots support; 68 percent wanted to help elect state and local candidates who shared his vision. Most impressive of all, more than 50,000 said they personally wanted to run for elected office. ..."
"... But they never got that chance. In late December, Plouffe and a small group of senior staffers finally made the call, which was endorsed by Obama. The entire campaign machine, renamed Organizing for America, would be folded into the DNC, where it would operate as a fully controlled subsidiary of the Democratic Party. ..."
"... Republicans, on the other hand, wasted no time in building a grassroots machine of their own-one that proved capable of blocking Obama at almost every turn. Within weeks of his inauguration, conservative activists began calling for local "tea parties" to oppose the president's plan to help foreclosed homeowners. ..."
"... Your friend should share her script for success w/ the DNC leadership. ..."
Feb 27, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Posted on February 25, 2017 by Yves Smith Kiss that party goodbye. From the Wall Street Journal :

Former Labor Secretary Tom Perez was elected chairman of the Democratic National Committee Saturday, giving the party an establishment leader at a moment when its grass roots wing is insurgent.

Mr. Perez defeated Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison and four other candidates in a race that had few ideological divisions yet illuminated the same rifts in the party that drove the acrimonious 2016 presidential primary between Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Mr. Perez fell one vote short of a majority on the first vote for chairman, with Mr. Ellison 13 votes behind him. The four second-tier candidates then dropped out of the race before the second ballot. On the second ballot, Mr. Perez won 235 of 435 votes cast.

Altandmain , February 25, 2017 at 3:46 pm

Somehow, I think most people knew that this was going to happen.

There's a good chance that Trump will end up being a 2 term president and that 2018 will be a disaster for the Democratic Party on the scale of 2010, 2014, and 1994. Meanwhile, they will surely blame the voters and especially the left, which is what they always do when they don't win.

I think that we should keep in mind that the US is a plutocracy and that at this point, the Democrats aren't even pretending to be a "New Deal" party for the people anymore. Perhaps its existence always was an outlet to contain and co-opt the left. At least now, the message is naked: the left is expected to blindly obey, but will never be given leadership positions.

In other words, the left is not welcome. I think that it is time for people to leave.

The only question at this point is, how hard is it going to be to form a third party? I don't see the Left as being able to reform the Democrats very easily. It may be so corrupt as to be beyond reform.

Carla , February 25, 2017 at 4:05 pm

The time to leave the Democrat party was when Obama turned healthcare over to the insurance and pharma industries in 2009.

If it were easy to form a third party it would have been done by now. But then again, if it were easy, perhaps it wouldn't be necessary.

WheresOurTeddy , February 25, 2017 at 5:43 pm

or 1993 when NAFTA was passed and FDR started his 23-years-and-counting spinning in his grave?

sgt_doom , February 25, 2017 at 7:01 pm

At least 1993, although the ideal time would have been after the Coup of 1963, but unfortunately too many were still clueless than. (Had more than five people and Mort Sahl ever bothered to read the Warren Commission Report - where Lee Oswald was "positively ID'd by a waitress for the murder of Officer Tippit:

W.C.: So you went into the room and looked at the lineup, did you recognize anyone.

Helen Louise Markham: No, sir.

And there you have it, gentlement, a positive ID! And the rest of the so-called report was even worse . . . .)

Oregoncharles , February 25, 2017 at 10:13 pm

(Patting self on back) That's when I left it. God, was it really that long ago?

And responding to the earlier part of the string: no, it isn't easy to form a "3rd" party; and yes, there already is one. Just might be time to stop nit-picking about it and help. (In Oregon, there are about 6, two of them right-wing.)

Kshama Sawant, who is a socialist not a Green, is hoping (I think that's the exact word) to put together a Left coalition. I think the Green Party could be sold on that – for one thing, we would be much the largest portion. Certainly I could, as I'm pretty tired of spinning my wheels.

Remember, according to Gallup, the Dems are now down to 25% affiliation (Reps at 28 – the first time they've been higher, I think because they won the election.) Independents are the plurality by a wide margin. Something's going to give, and we should try to get ahead of the parade. It could easily get really nasty.

John Merryman , February 25, 2017 at 11:45 pm

The problem with third parties is the same with the math of this ballot. If Perez was one vote shy the first time, that means he only picked up 18 votes the second time. So all the other candidates mostly split the opposition. I'm sure if the democratic establishment felt the need, they would form a few front parties.
People, you are just going to have to wait for it to blow up and after that, coalesce around one cause; Public banking and money as a publicly supported utility.
It took a few hundred years to recognize government is a public function and drop monarchy.

energizer wabbit , February 26, 2017 at 1:31 pm

Beats me how anyone thinks "public banking" will change anything. In a capitalist system, banks are banks. They chase the highest return. That's not where the public interest (qua people) lies and never will be. And "government is a public function" so long as it serves its mandate: to make return on capital investment function smoothly.

Tomonthebeach , February 26, 2017 at 1:03 am

For those of use who never were in the Democratic Party, this choice ensures that many of us will be looking for another party. The DNC just gave us the same choice as the last election – Corrupt establishment or Fascism. The distinction these days is not worth pondering.

SpringTexan , February 26, 2017 at 9:46 am

Unfortunately the deck is too stacked against a 3rd party in US. This article is good on that and on why playing nice with Democrats is also no good:
https://medium.com/@petercoffin/the-democrats-will-disappoint-you-a-third-party-aint-happening-and-other-garbage-you-don-t-want-3eb0a80c154#.h7q0j2uvp

What people are doing right now with Donald Trump's GOP - forcing town halls, making a ruckus, holding everyone accountable - has to be the model for progressive change in American politics. Doing this stuff inside the system isn't going to wor k. Forming a party around ideology or ideas isn't going to wor k. Wearing the system down is all that works.

SpringTexan , February 26, 2017 at 9:43 am

Good article on DNC chair race:
https://medium.com/@MattBruenig/be-clear-about-what-happened-to-keith-ellison-78e31bad6f76#.ri3iw6i5i

Before this gets turned into another thing where the establishment Democrats posture as the reasonable adults victimized by the assaults of those left-wing baddies, let's just be very clear about what happened here. It was the establishment wing that decided to recruit and then stand up a candidate in order to fight an internal battle against the left faction of the party. It was the establishment wing that then dumped massive piles of opposition research on one of their own party members. And it was the establishment wing that did all of this in the shadow of Trump, sowing disunity in order to contest a position whose leadership they insist does not really matter.
The establishment wing has made it very clear that they will do anything and everything to hold down the left faction, even as they rather hilariously ask the left faction to look above their differences and unify in these trying times. They do not have any intent of ceding anything - even small things they claim are mostly irrelevant - to the left wing.

Nuggets321 , February 26, 2017 at 2:55 pm

isn't in nice to see the Dims being so effective when it comes to threats to its establishment ways?

Another Anon , February 25, 2017 at 4:06 pm

Reform may become possible only when the money spigot dries up.
At some point, the oligarchs may simply decide its not cost effective
to finance such losers. With no money, there are no rice bowls and so the
professional pols and their minions will either wither away or seek a new funding
model which may make possible a different politics.
I think it will take well under a decade to see how this plays out.

L , February 25, 2017 at 4:11 pm

At some point, the oligarchs may simply decide its not cost effective to finance such losers.

Unless having a monopoly on both the winners and losers ensures a total control over the political system.

Carla , February 25, 2017 at 4:29 pm

Unless?

Patricia , February 25, 2017 at 4:31 pm

What is the cheapest way for oligarchs to maintain power in a pseudo-democracy?

If there is enough conflict among them, I suppose they'll continue to put money into both parties. Otherwise, why not just let one of the two slowly die? Electoral theatre is expensive.

Jason , February 25, 2017 at 4:50 pm

Electoral theatre is expensive.

The scary thing is that it's NOT expensive, compared to the size of the economy. As long as there's enough at stake for large companies and ultra-rich individuals, they can very easily buy two or even several parties.

(This is not to disagree with your main point, which is that they may let the Democrats die.)

Patricia , February 25, 2017 at 5:15 pm

But why bother with that extra bit, if it can instead be spent on a second or third bolt-hole?

But I suspect you are correct because the citizenry will revolt fairly quickly after the illusion completely dissolves. It's worth something to put that off for as long as possible.

WheresOurTeddy , February 25, 2017 at 5:55 pm

The United States' GDP was estimated to be $17.914 trillion as of Q2 2015.

Hillary spent less than $1.2B. Trump spent less than $700M.

So for less than $2B, or .00011148272 of the GDP, you can have your kabuki theater for the proles.

Entire election for ALL candidates cost just under $7B , or .00037904124 of GDP.

8 people have the same wealth as the bottom 50%.

And the Aristocrat Choir sings, "what's the ruckus?"

MG , February 25, 2017 at 8:10 pm

Yes it is when a very competitive Senate race is now $50M as a starting price tag and to run a viable Presidential campaign will likely be $1B as a floor in 2020.

Foppe , February 25, 2017 at 4:55 pm

Nah, that'd never fly. Must have "choice".

Patricia , February 25, 2017 at 5:10 pm

There'd still be 'choice' since we plebs would continue quixotically financing this/that with our cashless dollars (while they filter, oh say .30 of each, for the privilege).

At least, perhaps, until we finally get our sh*t together and genuinely revolt. How long will that take?

Foppe , February 25, 2017 at 5:13 pm

Hard to say, too few historical data points actually involving revolts.

witters , February 25, 2017 at 5:52 pm

The farce willl go on. After all, while the actual popular sovereignty expressed in voting might be minimal, and the information environment itself largely a corporate construction, its gives a concrete, personal, representation of popular sovereignty, and in so doing – and whatever the despondency of its voters and the emptiness of their choice – legitimates or "mandates" whatever it is the government does, and however corporate friendly it might be. And it may be – with its Private Public Partnerships, and revolving door from the corporate to public office (and back) – very corporate friendly indeed.

If this is the case, then the "China Model" is not, as some think, the ideal neoliberal political model. Explicitly authoritarian rule is, from the start, problematic in terms of popular sovereignty. If a corporate-friendly authoritarian regime is to avoid this, it has but one option. It must deliver economic growth that is both noticeable and widespread, and so do what neoliberal theory claims, but neoliberal practice isn't much, if at all, interested in providing.

We may well be in the midst of making a choice here

Altandmain , February 25, 2017 at 7:11 pm

At least the China model provided growth unreal living standards from the desperate poverty that most Chinese were living in a generation ago.

It is certainly not without flaws. Corruption, inequality, and pollution are big problems.

That said,the US is following the corruption and inequality pretty well. With the Republicans and other corporations in control, they will surely make sure that pollution follows.

Actually it will be worse. The Chinese model ensured that China built up a manufacturing sector. It followed the economic growth trajectory of Japan after WW2 and later South Korea. The neoliberals won't do that.

Patricia , February 26, 2017 at 8:52 am

Which 'we' is that? I suspect we are well past the time when people like you and me can make that choice. 40-50 years past.

b1daly , February 26, 2017 at 1:50 am

By "revolt" what do you actually mean? Armed overthrow of the existing power structure? Or political revolt, forming a new party? Breaking the US up into smaller countries?

I'm having hard time imagining a radical restructuring of power in the US. Nor does it strikes me as particularly desirable, as my observation is that the new power structure is often just as bad as the existing one. But now has to deal with governing a fractured society.

Patricia , February 26, 2017 at 8:48 am

Whatever would be required to create necessary change. A series of actions emerging from a plan, ever-intensifying until the system-as-it-is has no more power.

Do you think hundreds of millions of people should continue to let themselves be trashed? That sort of thing never lets up but only increases over time.

This situation is not unlike spousal abuse. The most dangerous time for the abused is when the she/he decides to leave. And the after-effects usually land her/him in poverty but also peace and self-respect.

Kurt Sperry , February 25, 2017 at 8:51 pm

Yep, in a duopoly it is necessary to own and control both halves–even a perpetually losing one. That is cheap insurance against nasty surprises. American political parties and politicians are cheap as hell to buy in any event. Gazillionaire couch change can control entire parties.

L , February 26, 2017 at 12:57 am

Agreed, this is why even the soviets maintained a permitted show of opposition if only to keep people distracted.

freedeomny , February 25, 2017 at 8:56 pm

Yes

Steve Ruis , February 26, 2017 at 8:32 am

Oh, c'mon. The money spent to provide an illusion of democracy is chump change compared to the billions they are reaping from having bought the government. The plutocrats are not trying to effect change really, they like it pretty much as it is now. The purpose of the two parties is to distract us from what is really going on. The only plutocratic interest in what they do is fueled by perverse curiosity of what their new toy can do.

steelhead23 , February 26, 2017 at 9:57 am

Anon, I hope you are right. Somewhat lost in the news was the vote NOT to ban corporate donations to the DNC. To me, that is at least as telling as Ellison's loss. The Clintons may be gone, but their stench remains.

reslez , February 25, 2017 at 4:58 pm

I think we need to accept the strong likelihood that there will be a corporatist-dominated Constitutional Convention by 2025. First on the agenda: a constitutional amendment that requires a balanced federal budget. The globalist elites will slam on that lever to destroy what remains of the economic safety net. "Balanced budgets" are very popular with the deceived public but such an amendment will end general prosperity in this nation forever. Imagine what else they'll outlaw and ban and 1860 doesn't feel so far away.

Fred1 , February 25, 2017 at 9:44 pm

What surprises me is that Establishment Ds make no effort to defend themselves from attacks from the Left. It's like they don't care: no leftward movement on policy. They just call Bernie and the Brodudes names. What Sanders did to Hillary is a proof of concept. The most powerful Establishment D is mortally wounded by an attack from a no name senator from Vermont. This can be used against any Establishment D. The Brodudes initially may not have wanted to burn it down, but they now know they can. So what are the Establishment Ds doing to defend themselves?

JerseyJeffersonian , February 26, 2017 at 9:59 am

Closer and closer it comes as the Democrats have let state after state come under one-party Republican rule while unjustifiably preening themselves for their "moral rectitude" (while yet continuing to assist in looting the joint for a small percentage of the take ). That party has come to play their part in cementing the injustices and inequalities into place. Witness Obama, not only sitting on his hands when action against palpable injustice was needed, but actively collaborating in rigidifying the rotten structure. The quintessential globalist, authoritarian, war-loving Democrat, the only kind permissable, vide Perez.

neo-realist , February 25, 2017 at 5:04 pm

There's a good chance that Trump will end up being a 2 term president and that 2018 will be a disaster for the Democratic Party on the scale of 2010, 2014, and 1994. Meanwhile, they will surely blame the voters and especially the left, which is what they always do when they don't win.

If Trump doesn't deliver the manufacturing jobs to the "undesirables" like he promised, if he dismantles ACA and leaves poor and working class "undesirables" to the wolf of some sort of privatization scheme health care w/ vouchers or tax breaks, if backtracking on financial sector reform leads to another economic meltdown, and if he and Bannon get another war, which metastasizes into asymmetrical warfare all over Western Europe and the US, then Trump's ability to get reelected is in serious jeopardy to say the least, no matter how lame the democratic challenger is. Bush's meltdown gave us a Black President for christs sake.

On the other hand, the down ticket races could continue to be the usual disaster for the dems unless they do a major reshift in their campaign strategies outside the blue states that includes strong populist economic messaging and pushing a strong safety net w/ a public option for health care (assuming the GOP wipes out ACA.)

nippersdad , February 25, 2017 at 5:18 pm

There are a lot of "ifs" there that are looking like "wills" at the moment. He is playing true to type and delegating policy to whomsoever flatters him best whilst jetting off to Mar-a-Lago for a game of golf with his business buddies. With the exception of killing TPP (maybe?) and no immediate European conflicts with Russia, this is what I would have expected from him and, more importantly, Pence. The true believers seem to be getting their way, thus far.

That said, I wouldn't discount the power of his ability to deflect blame for the consequences of his actions. For the most part, those who voted for him truly believe that everything is someone else's fault, and I don't see that changing any time soon.

witters , February 25, 2017 at 5:55 pm

'For the most part, those who voted for him truly believe that everything is someone else's fault, and I don't see that changing any time soon.'

And the vast majjority of those who voted against him! See the topic of today's post.

nippersdad , February 25, 2017 at 6:42 pm

This is true, but don't you think the standards are different? At the moment nothing is either Parties fault, according to their leadership, but the reactions of both Party's base has been far different to date. Dems have been comparatively unsuccessful blaming Muslims, leftists and Russians for their problems whereas that is, and always has been, red meat for Republicans. Any stick to beat someone with just doesn't work as well for the Democratic Party. Claire McCaskill calls Bernie a communist and is vilified for it at the time, so now she is whining because her seat is at risk in '18? What did she expect when she knew, at the time, that she was alienating half the Party by so doing?

Dems are losing because they have the misfortune of not having more Republicans in their electoral base, however hard they have tried to include them in their "Big Tent" leadership. Republicans actively fear their base, and would never make such an egregious political mistake.

Matt , February 25, 2017 at 8:34 pm

I thought all of the candidates for the DNC Chair were really bad. Even the ever so popular Keith Ellison. This guy once advocated for an entire separate country to be formed comprising of only African Americans. Just curious, how "tolerant" and "inclusive" would the immigration policy be for that country if it were ever created? What would the trade policies be in that country? Would they let a white owned business like Wal-Mart move into a black neighborhood and put the local black owned businesses out of business? Keith Ellison is nothing more than a hypocrite every time he criticizes Donald Trump's policies and advocates for his impeachment.

The entire Democratic party is falling apart. They are trying to get elected because of their race, sex, and/or religion. Instead of trying to get elected based on the content of their character and their message. I truly believe the main reason Keith Ellison was even considered for the DNC Chair is because he is black and a Muslim.

The party rigged the primary against Bernie because they felt it was time that a woman became president instead of a man. Some democrats even called Bernie a white supremacist.

This identity politics is killing the party.

JerseyJeffersonian , February 26, 2017 at 9:40 am

This, in spades.

You know, "Where there is no vision, the people perish "?

Irredeemable Deplorable , February 26, 2017 at 1:42 pm

The God-Emperor's vision is crystal clear:

"@realDonaldTrump: The race for DNC Chairman was, of course, totally "rigged." Bernie's guy, like Bernie himself, never had a chance. Clinton demanded Perez!" – Twitter

LMFAO

How about that new Clinton video, sure looks like she is going to run again in 2020 – please, Hilary, you go, girl!

Dugless , February 25, 2017 at 7:38 pm

The corporatist "third way" democrats are hoping for Trump to implode so that they can get back into the White House. They really don't think that they need progressives since it is undoubted in their opinion that Trump will certainly be fail on his promises and be unelectable in 2020 and they will be back in power. And they may be right but the dems still will have lost most of the states and many localities. It will be more of the Obama/Clinton wing at the top with all the "professional" hangers on facing down a Republican congress until the system collapses.

Brad , February 25, 2017 at 7:59 pm

That's clearly what the Perez/Nate Coln Dems are banking on. Metro-suburban class alliance of multicultural service workers and their secular Republican employers nonplussed by Bush-style Trump clusterfark. Heard no "strong populist message" out of Perez's mouth in the DNC debates. Anything the Dems do there will be to elect more Blue Dogs to strengthen the conservative wing of the party and push the Sanders people back to the margins. That's all they care about right now.

But it's a completely passive strategy that is at the mercy of the Republicans. For "what if" President Bannon lays off the coke and, like Obama, doesn't do stupid?

The only real hazard the Trumpistas face is the timing of the next recession. And that will depend on part on the Fed. The rest is: don't start a war, just leave ACA sit there.

The Fed, the Fed, it all comes down to the Fed in the next 4 years. Has Bannon studied up on Jackson's Bank War?

Oregoncharles , February 25, 2017 at 11:22 pm

I was just at a "Community Meeting" with Rep. Peter DeFazio – one of the more progressive Dems. Huge turnout, again. Questions were more challenging than the ones to Wyden. Amazingly old audience – where are all the Bernie millennials?

Toward the end, I asked him (1) what he thought had happened to the Democrats over the last 8 disastrous years; and (2) whether he saw motion to fix the problem.

He responded with a passionate statement of progressive ideas, so I guess that answers #1; but he didn't answer Pt. 2 at all, really, which is a negative answer. He had actually been pretty critical of the party in earlier answers, and we had just learned that Perez would be chairing the DNC.

I was wearing a Green Party T-shirt, which I'm sure he recognizes. Oddly, both the first and last questions were from local Greens: the first, from the former city councillor who runs against him on a regular basis; and the last from my wife, about the Boycott-Divestment-Sanctions movement. Time was limited, and we lined up for the microphones.

Lord Koos , February 26, 2017 at 1:45 pm

The wars won't matter to people as long as the propaganda is good enough (perhaps a helpful false flag incident as well) and as long as there is no draft. It's all about whipping up the patriotism we'll see if that still works.

P Walker , February 25, 2017 at 5:25 pm

The Democratic Party has always about "left containment." Their entire existence isn't about winning at all. It's about allowing establishment rule, which is why even when Democrats are elected the forward march into corporate rule continues unabated.

Burn it.

Carla , February 25, 2017 at 5:31 pm

I like Lambert's phrase:

Kill it with FIRE.

fresno dan , February 25, 2017 at 5:59 pm

Altandmain
February 25, 2017 at 3:46 pm

Neither party is worth a bucket of warm spit – and both parties pay no attention what so ever to the vast majority their members, or the vast majority of the citizens. And neither party can be reformed. IMHO, the only question is if any new party constituted would be infiltrated and undermined from within before it could do anything.

kimsarah , February 25, 2017 at 11:47 pm

Nothing to fear if Van Jones starts the party.

BeliTsari , February 25, 2017 at 6:14 pm

A series of storms was coming through, so I was tuning-around on TV, to find weather & stumbled upon coverage on MSNBC (the onliest way I'd ever end up there). The yammering bobble-head referred to actual lifelong Keynesian Democrats as "the FAR left." I simply assumed I'd tuned into FOX, since there's about 3 affiliates where I'm working. She kind of sneered the whole story. Why don't they just use CGI? Smart TV's, selfie cams and biosensors could ensure the viewer's attention; gauge reactions & report potential dissident proclivities? https://theintercept.com/2017/02/24/key-question-about-dnc-race-why-did-white-house-recruit-perez-to-run-against-ellison/ http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/eduardo-caraballo-puerto-rico-deportion-94795779.html http://www.juancole.com/2017/02/endangering-abiding-undocumented.html

MG , February 25, 2017 at 8:08 pm

This seems very much like a kneejerk reaction. Your assuming the economy doesn't go into recession by then which increasingly seems less and less likely as well as the GOP Congressional leadership or Trump showing much skill in executing their legislative agenda. A lot easier being the guy who chants out about how the guy in charge sucks and another entirely when they suddenly become the person in charge.

Unless Trump starts to deliver on jobs and meaningful wage growth, there will be inevitable backlash in 2018 at him and the GOP. It is going to be increasing when the rank and file American realizes that the GOP House tax plan goes for essentially a 20% VAT to be implemented on imported goods while they get a whopping income tax cut of 1-2%. Average American is a rube but eventually this will start to sink in as to just how short changed they'll be if it largely passes wholesale.

Adamski , February 25, 2017 at 10:19 pm

What if they do tax cuts for the rich without Social Security / Medicare cuts? What if they don't do much about Obamacare and don't lose votes that way either? And if the recovery continues, the labour market will tighten.

dcrane , February 26, 2017 at 3:36 am

Yes, and what if they *do* continue to put on a big show against "illegals" and allegedly unfriendly Muslim immigrants? And tinker just enough with NAFTA to claim a symbolic "win" against Mexico? This could be potent stuff.

If the Democrats haven't managed to come up with a candidate people can really get behind, it will be even easier for incumbency to pull Trump over the finish line again. Many Republicans who wouldn't vote for Trump this time "because Hitler" will have observed by then that the country survived Term I, and they'll get back in line, because Republicans always come home. The Democrats seem to think that since the election was close, all they need to do is run Obama V2 (Booker), thereby re-juicing the lagged African American turnout and putting a D back in the Oval Office. I think that ship has sailed now. If Trump truly bombs, then sure anyone will beat him. But as of now I'm not confident that he will simply fail and the numbers may only be more difficult for the Ds in 2020.

Richard H Caldwell , February 26, 2017 at 9:23 am

A very neat summation of my views.

Teleportnow , February 26, 2017 at 10:59 am

I seriously doubt Trump will be a one term president. DNC elections notwithstanding. If there's no "there" there in the, according to Trump, utterly nonexistent Russia scandal, why hide from the press? Take the questions. Call for an investigation himself. Nothing to hide? Quit hiding.

Irredeemable Deplorable , February 26, 2017 at 1:20 pm

Best news I've heard today. High fives all around.

As an oponnent of every Democrat and every Democrat "policy", I am overjoyed. Carry on.

Trumpslide 2020 t-shirts are already on sale, I'm ordering one.

Burritonomics , February 25, 2017 at 3:51 pm

Given very recent history, this is no surprise. Unfortunate, and I expect to see "resistance" activities nudged even more toward the same weary mainstream DNC tropes.

Vatch , February 25, 2017 at 4:11 pm

Well gosh, Alan Dershowitz just breathed a huge sigh of relief!

As for me, I probably have elevated levels of stress hormones. I need to visit my "happy place".

Harry , February 25, 2017 at 6:19 pm

the Dersh is probably just pleased none of his students has recently accused him of sexual assault.

Lee , February 25, 2017 at 4:13 pm

They also voted down a ban on taking all that yummy corporate cash.

aliteralmind , February 25, 2017 at 4:14 pm

They also voted down a motion to stop big money and lobbyist donations.

This is just another big fuck you to the progressive wing of the party. It's time to board the ship and start a mutiny. And if that doesn't work, sink the ship and build a new one.

WheresOurTeddy , February 25, 2017 at 6:06 pm

"This is just another big fuck you to the progressive wing of the party."

The message is undeniable: You're not welcome here. Thank you for your votes, thank you for your money, shut up, no you do not get to pick the candidate, Debbie and Donna did nothing wrong, no we are not getting rid of superdelegates, no we are not refusing corporate money, no you cannot have even a Clinton-endorsing kinda-progressive as Chair, no to free college, 'never ever' to universal health care, 'we're capitalists here', and Haim Saban's opinion matters more than millions of BernieCrats because money.

The ship be sinking.

integer , February 25, 2017 at 10:14 pm

and Haim Saban's opinion matters more than millions of BernieCrats because money.

"I'm a one-issue guy, and my issue is Israel."
Haim Saban

The D-party's biggest donor is a one-issue guy, and that issue is Israel but Russia!

In March 2008, Saban was among a group of major Jewish donors to sign a letter to Democratic Party house leader Nancy Pelosi warning her to "keep out of the Democratic presidential primaries."The donors, who "were strong supporters of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton presidential campaign", "were incensed by a March 16 interview in which Pelosi said that party 'superdelegates' should heed the will of the majority in selecting a candidate."The letter to Pelosi stated the donors "have been strong supporters of the DCCC" and implied, according to The Jewish Telegraphic Agency, that Pelosi could lose their financial support in important upcoming congressional elections.

Poor ol' Haim must be soooo pissed that Clinton lost again. Hahaha.

integer , February 25, 2017 at 10:20 pm

I wasn't planning on commenting for a while but ended up leaving a comment here a few minutes ago and it disappeared into the ether. Probably something to do with the one of the links I included. No big deal.

Outis Philalithopoulos , February 25, 2017 at 11:04 pm

Not sure why it vanished in the first place, but it should be up now.

integer , February 25, 2017 at 11:25 pm

Thanks!

Altandmain , February 25, 2017 at 7:06 pm

Basically they are bought and paid for by the special interests of America and indeed foreign ones too.

kimsarah , February 25, 2017 at 11:49 pm

Re: "It's time to board the ship and start a mutiny. And if that doesn't work, sink the ship and build a new one."

That ship has passed, at least the first part.

L , February 25, 2017 at 4:17 pm

I stopped being a Democrat a few years ago. And I have not donated for some time. Yet I still receive constant requests for money to keep the consultants in airline miles. Every so often I think that perhaps it might be time to "come home" or at least that they aren't so bad anymore.

Then they go and do this.

At this point I see no reason to keep the ossified corpse of the Clinton Machine Democratic party going. It is clear that the last thing they want to do is listen to actual voters to decide their direction. All they have is the faint hope that Trump will be so godawful that everyone will love them again.

But then that was Hillary Clinton's campaign strategy

Vatch , February 25, 2017 at 4:31 pm

If your state requires you to register as a Democrat in order to vote in the Democratic primary, I recommend doing so. Then you can vote for outsiders in the 2018 and 2020 primaries. If your state has an open primary system, you don't have to taint yourself with official membership - just request the appropriate primary ballot and vote.

hreik , February 25, 2017 at 4:40 pm

This is my dilemma. In CT, you have to be R or D to vote in primary. I left the D's after the CA primary b/c I was so disgusted. I'll see what candidates are looking like when the time comes and make my decision then.

The leadership of the D party is just clueless.

Chauncey Gardiner , February 25, 2017 at 5:10 pm

They're not clueless. They just like the money too much.

freedeomny , February 25, 2017 at 8:09 pm

+1000000000

L , February 26, 2017 at 12:59 am

Given that most of them are professional fund raisers/candidates it is not surprising.

lb , February 25, 2017 at 5:46 pm

I deregistered as a Democrat in CA today after 17 years (though I was already pretty much out over the past few years, I let this be the final straw opposite inertia). The CA "top two" system for general elections only puts the top two vote-getters from any party during the primary on the ballot, ostensibly switching the election to one largely determined during the primary, by primary voters.

The California Democratic party allows those voters registered as not specifying a political preference to vote in the Democratic primary, so I might still end up voting among the various options, especially if someone like Brand New Congress puts up a real candidate here or there. During the 2016 primary, the D-party anti-Sanders shenanigans were evident even in CA. In some areas, unaffiliated voters who wanted a D-party ballot were misled or required to very strictly repeat a specific phrase, or they were given ballots with no effect on the D-party primary. I expect to have to be very careful to request and obtain the correct ballot in advance. (Let's hope that the slow takeover at lower levels within the state makes this less necessary).

It's going to be a long, hard slog on the left, whether occasionally peeking inside the tent or building something cohesive, not co-opted and effective outside the tent (where it seems the D-party has necessarily pushed many).

Katharine , February 25, 2017 at 4:46 pm

But whatever you do, make sure you know your state's election law in advance, especially deadlines for registration changes, which may be earlier than you expect.

nippersdad , February 25, 2017 at 5:01 pm

Yep, New York state being the perfect example.

nippersdad , February 25, 2017 at 4:59 pm

"All they have is the faint hope that Trump will be so godawful that everyone will love them again."

Well, that and Nancy "we know how to win elections" Pelosi promising the Earth for votes to regain their majorities, again, only to then take all of that off of the table and start the cycle over again.

I really don't know how many times one can go to that well; we have seen this play before. Seems like an awful lot of people have caught on to the tactic at this point. Were that not the case, HIllary would probably be happily bombing Russia by now.

Biph , February 25, 2017 at 5:15 pm

The Dems are set up pretty well for 2018. Both Trump and Hillary are deeply unpopular and Hillary won't be a vote driver for the GOP in 2018 and Trump will be for the Dems. There are a bunch of important States with Gov races and whatever happens the next 20 months Trump and the GOP will own completely, they wont even have a recalcitrant legislative branch to point the finger at.
I always figured whoever won in 2016 was set up to be a one term POTUS. Best case scenario for Trump is that we tread water for the next 2-4 years and I don't think that will be enough get him a 2nd term although it might be enough to staunch GOP losses in 2020. If he gets gets into a messy hot war, fumbles a major natural disaster or sees an economic downturn in 4 years we'll be talking about the impending death of GOP.

nippersdad , February 25, 2017 at 5:37 pm

Those scenarios sound a little rosy considering the types of people we are talking about. They can take a lot of pain as long as someone else is feeling it more .and there is always someone else. If they cannot find a demographic to blame they will invent one; see the historic hatred for ObamaCare and the raucous town halls now defending the ACA; they don't have to make sense.

Also, too, Dems are defending more incumbencies in '18 than are the Reps., and the Republican Party has the machinery already in place to reduce the voting public down to just those that are more likely to vote for them. Just create a riot at a voting precinct, for example, jail whomsoever you want and take their stuff as is now foreshadowed in Arizona. They would love that stuff; "Beat those hippies!" And, after the Democratic Primaries, the Democratic Party will be in no position to take the high ground.

No, even if all that happens, I think the predicting the death of the GOP is way premature.

Biph , February 25, 2017 at 9:15 pm

His fans will vote for him, a lot of the the people who voted for him as the lesser of two evils will be demotivated to vote or will vote Dem as a check on him and this who voted for HRC as the lesser of two evils will be motivated. At best his popularity right now is about where GWB's was after he tried to privatize SS and just before Katrina and the public's view on Iraq flipped for good. I think 2018 will look a lot like 2006. Hate and spite will be on the Dems side in 2018 and those are great motivators.
Trump may have deep support, but it isn't very broad. He didn't win an 84 or even an 08 sized victory.
There is a reason the party in power does poorly in off year elections and Trump is the least popular newly elected POTUS in modern history.

Nippersdad , February 25, 2017 at 10:21 pm

I see your rationale, but then I look at Kansas and Wisconsin. Doubling down has never hurt them for long.

dcrane , February 26, 2017 at 3:52 am

It would be helpful to know, also, how many who normally vote Republican abstained or went 3rd party rather than vote for Trump. Maybe it wasn't that many (since Trump did get more votes than Romney after all), but many of these people will be voting for Trump in 2020 unless he completely tanks. It's never a good idea to underestimate the party loyalty of GOP voters. Beating Democrats is the Prime Directive.

Daryl , February 25, 2017 at 6:30 pm

I think the problem is that Republicans are much better at actually winning elections. How many seats can the Democrats actually regain? Keeping in mind that midterm voters skew older/Republican in any case.

Big River Bandido , February 25, 2017 at 7:52 pm

The Dems are set up pretty well for 2018.

Yes, set up well for failure.

Brad , February 25, 2017 at 9:03 pm

Looks like Darrell Issa is trying to outmaneuver Nate Coln.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/darrell-issa-bill-maher-jeff-sessions-recuse_us_58b10218e4b0780bac29b0d6 ?

http://issa.house.gov/ca-49-interactive-map

Ought to pull the new cold war, Russia-hating secular middle class Republicans and liberal Democrats. Who needs Latino service worker votes?

WheresOurTeddy , February 25, 2017 at 5:15 pm

Clinton Machine / Democratic party

You had it right the first time

der , February 25, 2017 at 4:33 pm

"We lost this election eight years ago," concludes Michael Slaby, the campaign's chief technology officer. "Our party became a national movement focused on general elections, and we lost touch with nonurban, noncoastal communities. There is a straight line between our failure to address the culture and systemic failures of Washington and this election result."

The question of why-why the president and his team failed to activate the most powerful political weapon in their arsenal.

Obama's army was eager to be put to work. Of the 550,000 people who responded to the survey, 86 percent said they wanted to help Obama pass legislation through grassroots support; 68 percent wanted to help elect state and local candidates who shared his vision. Most impressive of all, more than 50,000 said they personally wanted to run for elected office.

But they never got that chance. In late December, Plouffe and a small group of senior staffers finally made the call, which was endorsed by Obama. The entire campaign machine, renamed Organizing for America, would be folded into the DNC, where it would operate as a fully controlled subsidiary of the Democratic Party.

Instead of calling on supporters to launch a voter registration drive or build a network of small donors or back state and local candidates, OFA deployed the campaign's vast email list to hawk coffee mugs and generate thank-you notes to Democratic members of Congress who backed Obama's initiatives.

Republicans, on the other hand, wasted no time in building a grassroots machine of their own-one that proved capable of blocking Obama at almost every turn. Within weeks of his inauguration, conservative activists began calling for local "tea parties" to oppose the president's plan to help foreclosed homeowners.
https://newrepublic.com/article/140245/obamas-lost-army-inside-fall-grassroots-machine

Thomas Frank: "The even larger problem is that there is a kind of chronic complacency that has been rotting American liberalism for years, a hubris that tells Democrats they need do nothing different, they need deliver nothing really to anyone – except their friends on the Google jet and those nice people at Goldman. The rest of us are treated as though we have nowhere else to go and no role to play except to vote enthusiastically on the grounds that these Democrats are the "last thing standing" between us and the end of the world. It is a liberalism of the rich, it has failed the middle class, and now it has failed on its own terms of electability."
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/nov/09/donald-trump-white-house-hillary-clinton-liberals

And so it goes, unless. The ruling class, the professional class D&R, the upper 10%, those who make more than $150 thousand, win no matter who sits in the Oval Office or controls all 3 branches, both look down on their respective bases, the deplorables. Taking a page from the TParty to fight harder, tougher, longer, louder and make Perez move left.

LT , February 25, 2017 at 6:06 pm

OFA: nothing but lobbyists for the private health insurance industry.

Ernesto Lyon , February 25, 2017 at 8:04 pm

150k in the Bay Area ain't rich, unless you bought a house 30 years ago.

a different chris , February 25, 2017 at 8:19 pm

People like to have stable decently paying jobs. But:

>our failure to address the culture

They will never get it, will they?

Oregoncharles , February 25, 2017 at 11:50 pm

"The rest of us are treated as though we have nowhere else to go and no role to play "
And so far, they're right. At least, very few are going there. A lot are staying home, but that doesn't accomplish much.

Arizona Slim , February 25, 2017 at 4:36 pm

Take heart. One of my friends is a long-time progressive Democrat. She ran as a Clean Elections candidate and was elected to the Arizona legislature last November. She has never held office before.

It can be done.

neo-realist , February 25, 2017 at 4:51 pm

Your friend should share her script for success w/ the DNC leadership.

Big River Bandido , February 25, 2017 at 7:54 pm

I think the friend should share *nothing* with the DNC, but *fight* them every step.

neo-realist , February 26, 2017 at 1:30 am

If they toss the script aside w/o using the prescriptions for winning, fight them.

SpringTexan , February 26, 2017 at 9:49 am

Agree, Big River Bandido. She should share with progressive Democratic primary challengers to those sorry Democrats only. Not that anyone at the DNC would ever listen anyway.

But good for her!

Will S. , February 25, 2017 at 5:12 pm

Kudos to your friend! I think progressives fighting for places in the state legislatures has to be our first step, especially with the census/redistricting looming

Carla , February 25, 2017 at 5:40 pm

Where do you live? 2/3'rds of the states have Republican governors and 66-70 percent Republican state legislatures. They have already been gerrymandered and are very likely to remain this way for AT LEAST a generation.

I live in Ohio. Democrat state legislators can do absolutely nothing. Not that this particularly bothers them. They collect their $60,000 salaries - not bad for a VERY part-time position– regardless.

readerOfTeaLeaves , February 25, 2017 at 6:23 pm

I'm guessing that you failed to mention - in addition to salary - per diem, plus payments into the state retirement system? I'm guessing that $60,000 is only the top part of the iceberg; best to look under the waterline to get the whole picture?

Daryl , February 25, 2017 at 6:31 pm

Sounds a lot better than Texas, where legislators are paid $600 a month, thus ensuring that only the independently wealthy can be legislators.

HotFlash , February 25, 2017 at 5:42 pm

Congratulations to your friend, and thanks to her for her service. If you tell me where to donate, I will happily do that, too.

To neo-realist February 25, 2017 at 4:51 pm

Your friend should share her script for success w/ the DNC leadership.

Hello/hola/etc. The DNC has that script, they don't care, and IMHO AZSlim's friend should stay as *far* away from the DNC as possible.

Arizona Slim , February 25, 2017 at 5:48 pm

Her name is Pamela Powers Hannley. Her campaign slogan was Powers for the People.

Arizona Slim , February 25, 2017 at 5:55 pm

And she is on the Interwebs at Powers for the People dot-net. (Using my phone to post. Need to learn how to copy and paste a link.)

HotFlash , February 26, 2017 at 1:55 am

TY, Ms Slim. Will look her up and send a buck or two, if I am permitted.

neo-realist , February 26, 2017 at 1:34 am

They had Howard Dean, and a script for 50 state success and tossed it. Yeah, I guess they at least should hold Perez's feet to the fire to make him go lefty populist on the ground, if he doesn't, toss him and fight them.

HotFlash , February 26, 2017 at 1:53 am

Look, people, we cannot even get ahold of their feet, let alone hold them to any fire. Eg, B Obama.

Katharine , February 25, 2017 at 4:43 pm

Brand New Congress just got out their fundraising email in response to the election:

The DNC just elected a chair who is pro-TPP, against single-payer, against tuition-free state universities and has no desire to transform our economy in meaningful ways. A chair who thinks the status quo is ok. It's a clear indicator that they're confident in their agenda, a confidence exemplified in the words of Nancy Pelosi who believes that Democrats "don't want a new direction".

Not badly put.

Carla , February 25, 2017 at 8:27 pm

From the BNC web site. This looks good:

Our Goal

Elect a Brand New Congress that works for all Americans.

We're running 400+ candidates in a single campaign to rebuild our country.

Add Your Name

Join us if you believe it's time to reset our democracy.

Email
Please enter a valid email.
Zip
Please enter a valid zip code.

80% of Americans agree: Congress is broken. Both major parties have proven time and time again that they are either unwilling or unable to deliver results for the American people. But we have an alternative. We are recruiting and running more than 400 outstanding candidates in a single, unified, national campaign for Congress in 2018. Together, they will pass an aggressive and practical plan to significantly increase wages, remove the influence of big money from our government, and protect the rights of all Americans. Let's elect a Brand New Congress that will get the job done.

This list of sponsors DOESN'T:

Washington Post
Wall Street Journal
Wired
The Huffington Post
The Daily Beast
Slate
The Nation
The Frisky
Salon
Bustle
Boing Boing
Roll Call

****
No. Uh-uh. Time for BNP : Brand New Party!

marym , February 25, 2017 at 8:48 pm

Those seem to be just links to articles about them.

jopac , February 25, 2017 at 4:45 pm

Well I for one am relieved he's the new chair. I won't have to think there might be hope and change in the corp. owned demodog party. I'll celebrate with a glass of whine later.

Arizona Slim, Thanks for the good news in AZ. It was tried in my part of Calli but dnc did everything they good to elect repug instead of a real progressive.

Time to get firewood into the house

baldski , February 25, 2017 at 4:56 pm

In order for real representative government to appear on the American scene, two things have to happen:

1. Corporations have to be declared non-persons.

2. Money is declared not equal to speech.

Why do we have the situation we have now?

Two decisions by the Supreme Court. Santa Clara vs Southern Pacific RR and Buckley vs. Valeo. So, who is the real power in our Government? The Judicial.

Carla , February 25, 2017 at 6:05 pm

Here's where it stands right now:

https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-joint-resolution/48

So if your Congress critter has not yet co-sponsored, get on 'em.

Roger Smith , February 25, 2017 at 11:14 pm

Thank you so much for this post!! I saw a video on the 1886 case in high school and was disgusted. In passing time I forgot the specifics and have been trying to locate that decision since. I kept thinking it was in the 1920s/30s

TheCatSaid , February 26, 2017 at 2:06 am

I'd add No. 3: Ranked preference voting. (Majority wins or run-offs do not cut it.)
In this case, if choosing among 4 candidates, and I rank all 4 of them, my first choice gets 4 points, my second choice gets 3 points, etc. If I only rank 2 of them, my first choice gets 2 points, my second choice gets 1 point. If I only rank 1 person, they get 1 point.

Try this out on anything where you've got 3 or more options, in a group of any size. It's amazing how much better the group consensus will be reflected in the results.

You can vote your genuine preference without concern for "spoilers" or dividing the opposition.

readerOfTeaLeaves , February 25, 2017 at 5:03 pm

Kiss that party goodbye.

Yup.

Aumua , February 26, 2017 at 2:49 am

And good riddance.

Seriously though, I kind of like this little game we play here, where we act surprised or shocked or something at the Democratic Party's complete lack of integrity. Like there was ever any question that 'they' might do the right thing. I honestly don't know about you guys, but I decided a long time ago that the Democrats and Republicans were just two tentacles of the same vampire squid or whatever, so.. why the outrage and/or disdain? cause it's diverting I suppose.

WheresOurTeddy , February 25, 2017 at 5:13 pm

"The Cheaters At The DNC Just Chose Divorce Over Marriage Counseling"

http://www.newslogue.com/debate/355/CaitlinJohnstone

Caitlin Johnstone DGAF.

Patricia , February 25, 2017 at 5:27 pm

She posted a Trump tweet in that article:

"Congratulations to Thomas Perez, who has just been named Chairman of the DNC. I could not be happier for him, or for the Republican Party."

Yep, he did, 25 minutes ago: https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump

Ahahahahah

Bugs Bunny , February 25, 2017 at 5:50 pm

Hail to the chief of the *burn*

I guess I forgot how dumb the Dems were. Lucy and the football, I'll never learn.

Carl , February 25, 2017 at 8:14 pm

She's on fire, no question.

Ottawan , February 25, 2017 at 5:18 pm

Hold on to your negative prognoses, you'd be amazed what modern technique can do with a corpse.

They are clearly betting on Donnie blowing himself up and taking the Repubs with him. They are betting on looking less-dead in the aftermath.

WheresOurTeddy , February 25, 2017 at 5:22 pm

"After he's burned the castle to the ground, who's going to rule the ashes? That's right baby, US!"

LT , February 25, 2017 at 5:49 pm

The Democratic Party will never let the Republican Party go down. Haven't we figured that out yet?
The only way to get rid of the Republican Party is to get rid of the Democratic Party.

WheresOurTeddy , February 25, 2017 at 5:19 pm

As usual, Greenwald sheds some light:

"He is clearly an anti-Semite and anti-Israel individual," pronounced Saban about the African-American Muslim congressman, adding: "Keith Ellison would be a disaster for the relationship between the Jewish community and the Democratic Party."

"I'm a one-issue guy, and my issue is Israel," he told the New York Times in 2004 about himself
he attacked the ACLU for opposing Bush/Cheney civil liberties assaults and said: "On the issues of security and terrorism I am a total hawk."

https://theintercept.com/2017/02/24/key-question-about-dnc-race-why-did-white-house-recruit-perez-to-run-against-ellison/

Dear Leftists Who Haven't Got The Message Yet:

YOU'RE NOT WELCOME HERE

Annotherone , February 25, 2017 at 6:46 pm

We're not welcome anywhere it seems – and that has to be flippin' ridiculous in a country of this size and diversity! Could there be a better time for the Democratic Socialists to expand and come forth ? Cornel West at the helm, to begin – perhaps persuading Bernie to join him.

NotTimothyGeithner , February 25, 2017 at 5:30 pm

Who will Team Blue blame for Senate losses in November 2018? Tau Cetians? Game of Thrones ending?

nippersdad , February 25, 2017 at 6:00 pm

I suspect that Correct the Record has an app for that already in place.

Octopii , February 26, 2017 at 1:13 am

From what I see already around the interwebs and comment sections, it will be blamed on the lefty radicals who are fracturing the party by resisting the borg. And Sanders. And Cornel West. Etc Etc

MDBill , February 26, 2017 at 11:23 am

Right. The people who refuse to play on their team any longer. The neoliberal arrogance and sense of entitlement is just staggering.

freedeomny , February 26, 2017 at 5:14 pm

You know – it almost doesn't even matter. The Dems will get corporation donations just in "case" they win. They really aren't terribly motivated. It's like being a salesperson with no sales goals.

On another note – The Turks guy (Cent? can't remember his name) said that it was time for a third party on his twitter account. Nina Turner "liked" it. I found that a little hopeful.

LT , February 25, 2017 at 5:43 pm

The Democrats obviously can't wait for that constitutional convention by the sadist wing of the Republican Party. The sooner it can no longer have any loopholes that cause any interpretation outside of corporations rule, the easier it will be for Democrats. No more worrying about doing good things for those pesky people.

oho , February 25, 2017 at 5:47 pm

if anyone wants to email Tom Perez and sent your congrats, Tom left an email trail in the Podesta cache.

https://search.wikileaks.org/?query=tomperez1&exact_phrase=&any_of=&exclude_words=&document_date_start=&document_date_end=&released_date_start=&released_date_end=&new_search=True&order_by=most_relevant#results

George Phillies , February 25, 2017 at 6:02 pm

The United States already has third parties. There is no real need to start another one. The Libertarian party is the radical antiauthoritarian center. The Green Party ought to be adequate for progressive Democrats. There is also a far-right christian theocrat Constitution Party.

Carla , February 25, 2017 at 6:10 pm

As a registered Green, I am very sorry to tell you that the Green Party is not adequate. And I have no reason to think it ever will be.

Next.

Isolato , February 26, 2017 at 3:01 pm

Carla,

I've voted forJill twice now (and contributed moderately). She seems intelligent, well-spoken, progressive, passionate, everything we would want a candidate to be and nothing. If there was EVER a year to have broken through 5% sigh. So what's the problem?

Adam Reilly , February 26, 2017 at 5:24 pm

The problem is that there's widespread election fraud. You could see it in the Wisconsin and Michigan GE recounts and the Illinois Democratic Party Recount. The reality is that we don't have any trustworthy vote totals. Maybe Jill did a lot better (or maybe she didn't), maybe Hillary actually beat Donald (or maybe she didn't), maybe Bernie won the primary (okay, that one really isn't a maybe to me since it's very clear that Hillary used tricks to move IA and NV into her corner- which would have been fatal if she didn't, the CA, NY, AZ, PR, and RI primary debacles, DNC collusion etc).

Here are two videos that really helped me understand that this fraud is likely widespread:

Short video on the Wisconsin recount: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLra_4abmxc

Long video on the Illinois recount: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OSNTauWPkTc&sns=em
–>The "good" part starts at minute 24. The underlying point becomes clear really quickly if you want to just watch a small portion, but the speaker who comes on around the hour mark is excellent.

Election Justice USA also had a great summary. There's a reason many places in Europe still do manual, verifiable counting. Voting security, even more than money in politics, is the biggest barrier to having a legitimate Democracy. Unfortunately, that may be even more difficult than money in politics, which at least could theoretically be altered by Congress to cover the whole country at once.

Massinissa , February 25, 2017 at 6:38 pm

What Carla said about the greens. Also, the Libertarians are basically into neoliberalism. Theyre ok on social issues, but they aren't a real answer either.

neo-realist , February 25, 2017 at 7:24 pm

My hope is that the #Notmypresident millennials take the next steps from Trump needs to be resisted and work for longer term gains and political power by getting active in local politics/down ticket races and local democratic party organizations to in effect bum rush the dems and make it the party that it wants the country to be.

Love doesn't conquer all, Corporate lobbyists do. Organize for power, win elections, work for change.

Brad , February 25, 2017 at 9:20 pm

We need a political movement, not a "third" party.

SpringTexan , February 26, 2017 at 9:52 am

Thanks, Brad. Exactly right.

PH , February 25, 2017 at 6:03 pm

I think most people here are seeing what happened, but wrong about the impact.

Head of DNC is not a good place to organize primary challenges, and that is what is needed. DNC head is mostly just bag man for corporate money. Not that much power but some visibility. Bernie guy gets in, and there are constant questions about loyalty to the party and big tent and being fair to blue dogs. And then questions of competence if not enough money is raised or not enough elections won. No winning likely.

Losing suits us better. Establishment is against Progressives. Fine. The war is on. Find primary challengers, and get them elected.

In my view, that has always been the only way forward.

LT , February 25, 2017 at 6:10 pm

Find primary challengers, even if they have no chance of winning. Even in districts stacked against them turn money in politics into the wealthy's biggest weakness. Make the ROI in elections too expensive to achieve.

Big River Bandido , February 25, 2017 at 7:58 pm

I agree with you that losing this worthless race serves our long-term interests better. This is war and clarity is always an advantage. Easier to fight them from a clear outside position.

However, we have not the resources or the power base (within the Democrat Party) to mount effective primary challenges. If that party is to be a vehicle for change, we will have to take it away from them starting at the lowest levels - local party offices - and gradually work our way up.

As we move up the chain, we purge all the deadwood.

Outagamie Observer , February 25, 2017 at 6:13 pm

At this point, perhaps progressives would have more luck joining the Republican Party in hopes of "reform" or "changing the platform". They would probably have more luck than with the Democrats. As for 2018 and 2020, the congressional Republicans will have no incentive to defend congress or the Presidency. They would rather have Democrats to blame things for than have to deal with President Trump (whom they detest).

ChrisAtRU , February 25, 2017 at 6:29 pm

Einstein's definition of #Insanity immediately comes to mind.

We'll see what #BernieCrats, #DSA and others can do at the grassroots level. Their (continued) #Resistance to the #corporatistDem structure is even more important now.

But gawd, WTF are establishment Dems thinking?

PH , February 25, 2017 at 7:00 pm

They are incredibly smug. Sure that the only way to win in purple states is to run Repub lite.

Oregoncharles , February 26, 2017 at 12:14 am

That's just what Rep. DeFazio just said – even though he himself wins by ridiculous margins in a "swing" district (the closest win for Hillary inthe country, he said) by being a progressive's progressive.

He's living disproof of his own point.

RickM , February 25, 2017 at 7:25 pm

I was a card-carrying member of DSA when it was DSOC! Long time ago. Time to start paying dues again, even from the political wilderness in which I find myself. Way past time, actually. The problem with waiting for the Democrat Party to hit bottom is this: There is no bottom to this abyss.

nick , February 25, 2017 at 8:50 pm

As someone doing DSA organizing I'll say that we will be thrilled to have you on board again. Interest is quite high among the Bernie youth, so the seats are full but experience, generational diversity, and gas money are in relatively short supply!

Carla , February 25, 2017 at 9:10 pm

That's it exactly. The Democrats have no bottom.

Octopii , February 26, 2017 at 9:22 am

Why have I never even heard of DSA or DSOC before this moment?

Adar , February 26, 2017 at 3:00 pm

Perhaps from lack of organization on their part? After the election my husband registered to join the DSA, and sent them money. Three months later, no acknowledgement of any kind, not even a dumb membership card. Not that the Democrats ever sent anything but requests for cash, but we expected better.

polecat , February 25, 2017 at 10:05 pm

WTF are esablishment Dems thinking ?? . OF ??

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

did I miss anything ?

ChrisAtRU , February 26, 2017 at 3:57 pm

Yeah, but if you blow all the $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ you raise and still lose

#iHearYaThough

Dikaios Logos , February 25, 2017 at 6:32 pm

The Washington Post's headline:
"Tom Perez becomes first Latino to lead Democratic Party"

Hmm.

ChrisAtRU , February 25, 2017 at 6:38 pm

Yes, because that meaningless #IdPol nugget (if it's even true) is supposed to overcome his worthlessness as a progressive.

Benedict@Large , February 26, 2017 at 12:28 pm

It's OK. They let Ellison be play chairman. The Identities are pleased.

BTW: Perez was born in Buffalo, NY, and Wikipedia lists his nationality as American. The WaPo headline is bullcrap, intended to distract readers from the real issues, and promote the Clinton wing to Latin Americans, an identity group that certainly would benefit more from the Sanders wing.

manymusings , February 25, 2017 at 7:24 pm

@neo-realist, @biph

Bush's meltdown did give us a Black President - but after 8 years, not 4 years. During the election I too thought whichever candidate won was poised to be a one-term President, but there's a big condition: there absolutely must be a compelling competing narrative, and a defined counter-platform. It doesn't matter what calamity results from a Trump-led-monopoly-republican federal government if they still dominate the narrative and the opposition is still just "resisting" (or has an incoherent laundry list). It's overly-optimistic to think the Rs will own bad outcomes, or that those in power ever necessarily do (if that were so, neither Bush nor Obama would have been re-elected).

I'll hand it to the dems, I thought they'd string things out. I didn't think they'd let it be this obvious, this quickly, that the counter force won't come from the democrat party. None of us thought it would, but maybe we thought they'd at least throw some dust in the air to try keep us guessing for a while.

The challenge for the Left remains organization and focus. The clarity delivered by the democrat party is helpful. No need to debate reform, that's been answered (at least for now). The democrat establishment has nothing to do with the Left. It is not the opposition per say but might as well be (think of it this way: an opponent would refute your work, try to tank or sabotage it; the democrats invite you over to steal it, mess it up, fail, blame you, and invite you over again, huffing that their own work is "essentially the same anyway" but insisting that they be in charge).

It's time to own the Realignment. One part of that is making a clear break from the democratic establishment in terms of agenda, priorities, solidarity, identity. Not just a quibble among the like-minded; a divorce. We are only serving its interests if we don't. Case in point, the linked article echoes the common refrain that between Perez and Ellison "ideological differences are few ". No, no, a thousand effing times no. That is wrong, and attempts to fit in or make common cause with the dem establishment only validate the self-serving Unity/Look Forward narrative whose purpose is obscure what's really at issue and at stake.

And the corollary to cutting losses on the dem establishment is the second part - building the realignment, which means finding and creating common cause where it's been latent or non-existent. A compelling, competing narrative must be a counterweight not just to Trump's blame-deflections, but to the drivel spewing (at least as subtext) from the establishments of both parties. The key is not to try make the Rs own the outcomes on their watch; it's to make the Establishment own them, and to make Trump own that he is the Establishment (or that he caters to it).

Everything else is secondary. Elections up and down the ballot (local, state and federal) may force decisions on voting for a party, but which party prevails is not important - it is incidental, relevant only if it serves the cause, not vice versa. The Left needs to be clear on the realignment, stop talking to and about parties, and take up common cause and concern where we can find it. I have a feeling that the Left is less defined and determined than we imagine, because we aren't really testing it yet. Illusions about the democratic party are gone. And that's a good thing.

neo-realist , February 25, 2017 at 7:59 pm

It doesn't matter what calamity results from a Trump-led-monopoly-republican federal government if they still dominate the narrative and the opposition is still just "resisting" (or has an incoherent laundry list). It's overly-optimistic to think the Rs will own bad outcomes, or that those in power ever necessarily do (if that were so, neither Bush nor Obama would have been re-elected).

If Trump owns a narrative on a brick and mortar foundation of higher unemployment in the battleground states, devastation of lives from another financial meltdown (Bush had already stolen the second term prior to it), devastation and death from a potential free market solution to health care–"here's a voucher, go chose the best deal cause it's all about giving you your freedom", and war that may end up being brought to the shores of Western Europe and the United States killing a whole bunch more than 9/11, it would be pretty difficult to come back and sell the medicine show elixir a second time. Promising a whole lot and delivering less than zero, I don't know if the "deplorables" will get fooled again by his fake populism when he comes back for their votes in four years when they're still unemployed, underemployed and in greater debt and or bankruptcy from increased medical care costs. I'm not saying this as a affirmation of neoliberal democratic people running for the presidency, but that a whole lot of nothing incumbent running on a world of shit that he's created is vulnerable to a candidate who may be a whole lot of nothing with less baggage.

And Trump would potentially be running on a bigger pile of poop that he's added to the domestic and foreign fronts of Obama and Bush. O and B brought us to the precipice of the cliff, but Trump incompetence GOP ideologue arrogance can drive us off the cliff.

manymusings , February 25, 2017 at 8:54 pm

We may be pointing at different parts of a continuum - how bad things are in four years relative to Trump promises, and why people believe things are so bad. We are likely closest on how bad things could be - I agree, the stuff Trump ran and won on is likely to be much, much worse - but I think I'm less inclined to see that as handing him electoral defeat in 2020. Of course it's always easier/better to be able to run on something delivered. And less-than-zero can and by logic should tank a President. But the why is important - especially when the electorate basically doesn't trust any of these clowns. No one really expects anything from Washington, and is used to things getting worse. If Trump can deflect and maintain his message - cast blame on various faces of the establishment, the democrats, media, eventually even the republicans - I don't think he's inevitably or even likely undone. I'm not saying nothing will ever catch up with . just saying it's not guaranteed. There are a lot of factors, but I think here's actually my main thing: it depends less on "holding him to account" or pointing at failures or making him own things, and more on advancing a coalition with a compelling voice, coherent platform - and not about party. In the end, pinning failures on Trump only succeeds if there's a concrete and appealing answer to "compared to what." Trump just won against The Establishment, and the classic establishment move is to point giddily at failures and mis-steps, and say here's where you can donate, and thanks for your vote. A successful opposition has to do better.

UserFriendly , February 25, 2017 at 7:40 pm

Is it too late to change my mind and support a Syrian no fly zone? I want this country to fail. I want it to stop existing. I absolutely hate everything about america. I want Both Clinton's and Obama's heads on a plate. If Bernie doesn't announce he's creating a new party then I'll just be sitting around thinking about the best way to undermine this shit hole of a country.

vidimi , February 26, 2017 at 12:32 am

impeach trump. start a civil war

the US as a superpower must end

Tom Denman , February 25, 2017 at 8:01 pm

The Democratic Party no longer stands for anything at all (witness its recent conversion to McCarthyism). Its actions are motivated by no purpose save its leaders' self-enrichment.

A political party without a raison d'ˆtre is little more than a walking corpse and there is nothing to be lost by leaving it.

stillfeelintheberninwi , February 25, 2017 at 8:27 pm

Though sad about the outcome of the DNC chair race, I think PH is right, DNC chair is probably just about raising the corporate $$. I'm sticking with the Tip O'Neil strategy, "all politics is local."

I joined the D party in 2014, mostly because I thought I had to get involved and help remove Scott W from the governor's mansion. What I saw was lethargic and not very welcoming. Couldn't get anyone to train me on how to canvas. I offered over and over to do data entry, web, social media.

In the summer of 2015, I got involved with a local issue and we WON. 8 people (no other Dems) and we stopped a bad deal the city was about to make. We did petitions and spoke at council meetings. Wrote op eds, did radio interviews, put up yard signs.

Through that I met an organizer from a progressive group and I told him that I was thinking of running for local office. He introduced me to the bare facts of how to run a campaign and put me in touch with another progressive group that runs candidate training seminars. I went to one of those seminars. I was listening to Bernie too:) His positive voice was a great inspiration. By the end of 2015, I knew I would run for the county board. All our local races are non-partisan and often uncontested. The incumbent would be running for her third term.

The local election is held during the spring Presidential primary. I live in Wisconsin. My area is completely red. The election I could best model from was the 2012 and Rich Santoruim won my district. I had access to the VAN as well and could see that Republicans dominated my district in this election. (It voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012) I planned my campaign based completely on meeting the voter at the door and listening. Turnout is usually pretty low, 30%. I figured 50 hrs at the doors would do it. Interestingly, almost every person I talked with didn't even know who represented them on the county board. It was surprisingly easy, the only stress was the heat of the Presidential primary and how that would bring unpredictability to my race.

Happy news, I won. More Happy news, I got involved with recruiting and helping people run for local office. We're at it right now. School board, city council. This is where it begins and this is where the ball has been dropped in Wisconsin. The Republican party has used the local offices very effectively to build their bench. What the Dems didn't do was build the bench.

In Wisconsin, this is so easy because the vast majority of the local offices are non-partisan. When someone asked me what party I was with, I would just say, "this is a non-partisan race." That was the end of that part of the conversation and we were on to something else. The other thing about the local elections is that very few people actually run a campaign, so if you do, you will win. Your name is the only name they will know.

I now have connected with other people in the state who are working on this strategy. It is going to take a while, but we will build the bench and take back the state. It isn't going to happen overnight.

I went to the first local Our Revolution meeting today. I was impressed. The organizer had exactly the same thought – we are going to fill the county board with progressives. Stuff is going to happen. We've got the people, that is what we need locally, not $$.

If only the Democratic party could see, they need to train up and use their people. Forget the big $$$.

Jean , February 25, 2017 at 8:56 pm

This is an inspiring story. The "silver lining" in these times is that people are taking their anger and disappointment and doing something about it at an actionable, local level. I went to a local assemblyman's town hall meeting yestesrday that had hundreds more attendees than were planned. The natives are restless.

hreik , February 25, 2017 at 9:26 pm

Great read and story. ty so much

David , February 25, 2017 at 9:28 pm

I, too, am in WI and running for city council. The only reason I'm willing to do so is *because* the local offices are nonpartisan – I am quite disillusioned with national politics and both parties. At least locally some good can be done. DC is irredeemable.

I will likely be using the WI open primary to vote for whichever candidate the DNC opposes, not that it will matter. If nothing else, I will feel better.

Stillfeelintheberninwi , February 25, 2017 at 11:14 pm

Thanks for running David. Let us know how it turns out.

neo-realist , February 25, 2017 at 10:06 pm

Congratulations, Bravo. You should touch base w/ the DNC. Advise them of your formula for winning, specifically the sorely needed bench building.

SpringTexan , February 26, 2017 at 9:55 am

as though they'd be interested!! lol.

he should go on doing exactly what he is doing and hurray for him!

John k , February 25, 2017 at 10:25 pm

Taking over the dem party, starting with local races, will be a very long struggle. Generations. Particularly considering candidates trying for dem nom will be attacked by corp dems tooth and nail.
The greens are very disorganized. So What? Take them over and organize them. This is doable, and with somebody like Bernie leading the charge you could pull in half the dem party plus indies and win elections in 2018 doesn't take that much support to win elections in three way races, look at GB.
and then be viable for pres in 2018.

Bernie has to give up on dems if he wants to move the needle. Perez win might just be that extra middle finger that gets him off the dime.

And trump tweet painfully on target

vidimi , February 26, 2017 at 12:23 am

they want party unity, but only on their terms

kimsarah , February 26, 2017 at 12:29 am

To heck with the local races, she's baaaaaaaaaaaack!

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-02-25/hillary-clinton-calls-resistance-we-need-stay-engaged-ill-be-you-every-step-way

landline , February 26, 2017 at 2:08 am

The forces of capital own both parties in a two party system. They will never give up either of them. Socialists, Social Democrats, Democratic Socialists, even progressive liberals and .must look elsewhere. Anything else is fruitless.

St. Bernard had his chance. He blew it. Time to move on from him and MoveOn and the like.

voteforno6 , February 26, 2017 at 4:35 am

Apparently, Valerie Jarrett was whipping votes on behalf of Barack Obama. That man really does have quite an oversized ego, even for a politician.

Otis B Driftwood , February 26, 2017 at 7:15 am

And so the DNC has learned nothing from the past election cycle and the repudiation of neoliberalism here and abroad. Confirms my decision to leave the party.

They're pathetic and hopeless.

Jen , February 26, 2017 at 8:40 am

Observations from the western border of the Granite State:

I decided to attend a local democrat meeting because the candidate I supported in the D primary for governor (Steve Marchand – he lost) was the keynote speaker. When I received my copy of Indivisible, and saw that one of the working groups for the night was focusing on "Fake News," I almost decided to stay home.

But I didn't. Steve was great. He, counter to the message of "we must play defense; we cannot offer positive alternatives," in Indivisible, repeatedly told us that "we cannot beat something with nothing." He spoke extensively about local organizing, and about appealing to all voters on the issues. He got a very enthusiastic response from the 100 or so people who turned out for the meeting. Our governor has a two year term, and while Steve said that he was not running for anything at the moment, he's clearly laying the ground for a 2018 run. He's getting out in front of every local Dem group, and doing meet and greets all over the state. Good for him.

We have a Berniecrat, Josh Adjutant, running for state party chair. He may not win, but he too, is out meeting with groups all over the state and getting his name out there. He narrowly lost a bid for state rep in a deeply republican district to a Free Stater, who hasn't shown up for a single vote since being elected. Last week the Free Stater resigned, and now there will be a special election. Josh is running again. He's likely to win this time.

After hearing that Perez won the DNC chair, my knee jerk reaction was to say the hell with it. However there are no viable third party options here, and the people who voted for Perez all come from the state party.

What I noticed among our Dem group, was a real desire to work on issues and develop a positive counter message.

So I'm going to get more involved and fight from within. I joined the "fake news" group, pushed to focus on policy, and volunteered to chair the group going forward.

SpringTexan , February 26, 2017 at 9:57 am

Great report, Jen. That's encouraging. Thanks for what you are doing.

We can support good individual Democrats and office holders and good primary candidates, but with absolutely illusions about sorry sorry party and its resolute determination to continue hippie punching.

Makes me sick when they go on about Russians and conflict of interest and ignore things that affect everyone's lives, and that's what they plan to do.

Benedict@Large , February 26, 2017 at 12:19 pm

As I have been saying for years now, the ONLY purpose of the Democratic Party today is to crush its own left wing. Denying this at this point is a fool's errand.

Given this, how can any member of this same left ever justify another vote for any candidate this Democratic Party sponsors? You do not overcome such hostility by electing its representatives.

Does that mean you has to vote for people like Donald Trump? Unfortunately, it does. If you don't, you are not playing at the same level they are, and they will beat you until the cows come home. These are the people who do not cede power. These are the people it must be taken from.

Foppe , February 26, 2017 at 3:01 pm

Guess I should've posted this here instead:

"What all people have to realize," said Stuart Appelbaum, a labor leader from New York and Perez supporter who brought the chair process to its end Saturday afternoon by calling for the results to be accepted by acclamation, "is the real form of resistance is voting."

Glen , February 26, 2017 at 3:18 pm

The DNC is nothing but a political hedge fund for the .01%.

[Feb 27, 2017] Dnc bash has a vid from hillabillie

Feb 27, 2017 | href="dnc%20bash%20has%20a%20vid%20from%20hillabillie%20and%20the%20fans%20go%20?">

jo6pac February 24, 2017 at 3:50 pm

Dnc bash has a vid from hillabillie and the fans go ?

https://www.yahoo.com/news/hillary-clinton-calls-for-resistance-and-persistence-from-democrats-190228905.html

Reply
  1. sleepy February 24, 2017 at 6:22 pm

    Is this a rollout? What's next, a listening tour?

    Reply
  2. Big River Bandido February 24, 2017 at 7:19 pm

    Apparently it was a 3-minute video but the transcript only took about 15 seconds to read. The actual text is a void, there's nothing said of substance. Probably this is more about the timing and venue of the release, which would indicate it's just a routine warning to her faction at the DNC meeting tomorrow. No matter who wins tomorrow, the Clintons will still control all institutional fundraising. Having one of their own installed (yet again) as chair would simply make that job easier for them.

    Reply
    1. Reply
    2. lambert strether February 25, 2017 at 1:38 am

      Nice to see Clinton hijacking #TheResistance branding, the vile Neera Tanden having paved the way.

      I may seem overly foily on Democrat co-opting, but let's remember that the Democrats decapitated #BlackLivesMatter effortlessly. A couple of TFA celebrity leaders - DeRay is now openly hawking product on his Twitter feed - and boom, done. And that was a movement driven by cops whacking black people with impunity; a good ceal of grassroots power, there. Which was not, of course, addressed.

      The Democrat establishment is perhaps too overly adapted - rather like the the panda, which can digest the shoots of certain bamboos - to its ecological niche of retain power within the Party. But at that, they are superb. Two lines of defense against Ellison with Perez and (sp) Buttegeig. That's cute, though perhaps not so cute as a panda.

[Feb 27, 2017] Do we need any further proof that the Democratic Party is more interested in reconciling with the corporate elite than with its populist base?

Notable quotes:
"... In much the same way Blair's catastrophic prime ministerial terms as leader of the UK's mainstream 'Left' will be justifiably viewed unkindly through the lens of history, so too will corporate place man Obama's two abject 'Democratic' presidencies (although to be fair it was Billy boy who saw $ signs in his eyes and who really first started the rot proper for the Democrats.) ..."
"... Listen, Liberals ..."
"... Strangers in Their Own Land ..."
"... I live in a district shaped like a banana ..."
"... "If half of the Super Delegates had voted for the Sanders wing at the convention, wouldn't Sanders have been the Dem candidate?" ..."
Feb 27, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
DakotabornKansan , February 26, 2017 at 3:52 am

Do we need any further proof that the Democratic Party is more interested in reconciling with the corporate elite than with its populist base? Its core party leadership is against populist ideas. Liberalism of the rich having failed the middle and working classes, fails on its own terms of electability. It helped create today's shockingly disillusioned and sullen public.

Did the Charlie Brown left really believe that this time that Lucy wouldn't pull the football away and they wouldn't land on their kiesters? But the Democratic Party always pulls the ball away. It's their nature.

"The crucial tasks for a committed left in the United States now are to admit that no politically effective force exists and to begin trying to create one. This is a long-term effort, and one that requires grounding in a vibrant labor movement. Labor may be weak or in decline, but that means aiding in its rebuilding is the most serious task for the American left. Pretending some other option exists is worse than useless. There are no magical interventions, shortcuts, or technical fixes. We need to reject the fantasy that some spark will ignite the People to move as a mass. We must create a constituency for a left program - and that cannot occur via MSNBC or blog posts or the New York Times. It requires painstaking organization and building relationships with people outside the Beltway and comfortable leftist groves. Finally, admitting our absolute impotence can be politically liberating; acknowledging that as a left we have no influence on who gets nominated or elected, or what they do in office, should reduce the frenzied self-delusion that rivets attention to the quadrennial, biennial, and now seemingly permanent horse races. It is long past time for us to begin again to approach leftist critique and strategy by determining what our social and governmental priorities should be and focusing our attention on building the kind of popular movement capable of realizing that vision." – Adolph Reed Jr., "Nothing Left, The long, slow surrender of American liberals," Harper's Magazine, March 2014 issue

Don't waste any time pissing and moaning - organize!

It is time to revisit "Fighting Bob" LaFollette's Wisconsin tactics of the early 1900s.

If the soul of the nation is to be saved, I believe that we must become its soul.

"There never was a higher call to greater service than in this protracted fight for social justice." – Robert M. La Follette Sr.

Ernesto Lyon , February 26, 2017 at 4:15 am

There is a liberal propaganda state of the 10%. It is dogmatic and thus unfalsifiable.

Arguing with them is like arguing atheism to a fundamentalist. They cannot hear arguments that violate the structure of their religion. They simply do not parse.

Gman , February 26, 2017 at 7:37 am

I must say I really appreciated your analogy of neoliberalism and religion.

To extend it, if I may, religions cannot exist and persist without faith ie a conviction without the need for proof, or worse sometimes despite overwhelming personal or widespread evidence to the contrary.

Most established religions, unsurprisingly are rigidly hierarchical, controlling and equally require a self-serving, venal priesthood to act as conduits to interpret and explain (away?) the finer points, gross injustices and glaring contradictions thrown up by the current 'natural order' and structures it demands and imposes on its potentially questioning or waivering followers.

The 'religion's' arcane nature is maintained at all costs, and this is facilitated by a deliberately impenetrable jargon (to a credulous, often fearful laity whom mostly endure its harshest edicts), and all tied together by an over arching fallacious narrative predicated on fear that demands unconditional obedience and compliance or facing severe, lasting consequences for apostacy.

Keep losing the faith, people.

PH , February 26, 2017 at 12:23 pm

Maybe to some degree, but that is more in the general public. Not in the blue dog hierarchy.

Most of them are not that smart. Not intellectual. And certainly not devout.

They are clinging to their place in the world, and the chit-chat verities of the clique.

They are smug. And they think they know best how to win.

Gman , February 26, 2017 at 6:00 am

In much the same way Blair's catastrophic prime ministerial terms as leader of the UK's mainstream 'Left' will be justifiably viewed unkindly through the lens of history, so too will corporate place man Obama's two abject 'Democratic' presidencies (although to be fair it was Billy boy who saw $ signs in his eyes and who really first started the rot proper for the Democrats.)

Let's be realistic, really successful politicians are rarely shrinking violets, and are mostly to a man or woman sociopathic narcissists, but it is only in the modern age that these apparently credible, flag of convenience, self-serving, ideologically bereft personalities not only have the power to lead and dominate these long-established political parties during their relatively brief tenure, it appears they now also have the power to profoundly undermine or even possibly destroy them in the longer term.

Is it just a shame or coincidence that these once proud and powerful parties of waning influence happen to traditionally represent the interests of working people I wonder?

Andrew , February 26, 2017 at 6:51 am

What a frustrating situation. It's hard to avoid the conclusion that the corporate Democrats really do have a death wish. I agree with many comments that it is incredibly destructive and stupid to double down on their losing strategies instead of embracing the Sanders wing of the party. I partly agree w/ Glenn Greenwald that electing Ellison would have been an easy way to welcome in the Sanders wing, but unlike him, I'm not sure the Dem chair really is just a symbolic position. It certainly is symbolic–and the corporate Dems have chosen potent (and loathesome) symbols in Debbie W-S and Donna B. But I disagree w/ Greenwald that it is only symbolic. I think the position does matter in many ways. In any case, in this election which came to be seen by Dems as a battle for control over the direction of the party, it is clear now who runs the show and is determined to continue running the show: the corporate shills of the Clinton/Obama Dems.

But I also see this as a failure of Ellison and the progressives. We have to play hardball if we're going to win. Ellison had the endorsement of many Dem stalwarts; he has a relatively strong record for a Democrat; emboldened with party authority, I believe he could have done a lot; and yes, he would have had great symbolic value. But he did not make a strong case for his leadership, as far as I can tell. He didn't declare loudly and clearly why the Dems have been losing and make a powerful case for why, now, the Dems need desperately to change. Instead he was having dinner with Perez, cutting side deals, and making a great effort to smile and please everyone. Haim Saban and the corporate Dems came after him with hateful islamophobic slanders; Ellison stepped back, spoke softly, praised Israel, and vowed to work closely with corporate Dems. And he still lost. These conciliatory positions will not cut it. Unless and until there's a vigorous position articulated within the party on the desperate need for drastic changes, we'll lose.

One reason why this is so frustrating is that across the country, I believe the landscape looks very promising for a progressive agenda–at least as progressive, or more so, than what Sanders articulated. The energy is there, and growing. But we still lack the organization. Where will it come from? Not from the Greens, I'm afraid. As much as I agree with Stein and the Greens positions on many issues, the Greens have over the decades proven that this is not a party interested in building grassroots power. For that you need broad and sustained efforts over time at the level of school boards and city councils, building toward winning candidates to positions at the county level, and mayors, and state representatives, and so on. You have to build a name for yourself and prove through smaller campaigns what you stand for and that you can win victories for your voters. And voters need to feel that it is their party, our party. The Greens have not done any of this. It's not enough to just have good ideas or be able to win a policy debate.

There's the Working Families Party, which has done some of this organizing and has some victories. But it's still woefully short of what is necessary. But I believe there's a lot of talent and potential on the left–and a growing and restless energy now under Trump. We have to be strong and clear that this corporate Dem program is unacceptable. We need to field local candidates on issues people care about, from city banking and municipally owned power and IT, to police violence, more community control in schools, and so on. Whether the people carrying out these potentially popular programs are Dems, Greens, Working FP or Socialists, matters less, it seems to me. But if people are convinced that only a reinvigorated Dem Party will be able to do it, then there needs to be a hostile takeover. The Clintonites & the Obama people, Haim Saban and their ilk: they're not our friends and must be denounced and opposed. These people are at best wishy-washy and mealy-mouthed when it comes to advocating for us; they continue to compromise rightward and adopt unpopular conservative agendas and to kick us in the teeth. Fuck them. We must articulate a positive, winnable agenda around issues we care about.

PH , February 26, 2017 at 12:38 pm

See the comment above about local clubs. A good place to start.

Change is not going to come top down, even if that sounds like the easiest way. Too much ego and money invested in the old ways.

Blue Dogs are confident Progressives cannot win in rural states. We must prove them wrong.

Blue Dogs do not believe we can find credible primary challengers. They think we are just a bunch of whining idealists. We must prove them wrong - not on blogs - at the polls.

WhiteyLockmandoubled , February 26, 2017 at 1:25 pm

It is not only clubs. It's the party structure itself at the municipal and county level, which is generally occupied by a combination of well-meaning 10% liberals, eager corporate acolytes who see politics as a path of personal advancement but find the Republican social positions icky and whoever just shows up.

In many places it's mostly the latter. So, form your own club, yes, and go to local party meetings, yes, but more than anything else, work. Organize. Knock on your neighbor's door, listen to them and talk with them. Then do that again, and again, and again. Recruit your friends and colleagues to do the same. When the moment is right, get someone whose values you really trust to run for office, and if there's resistance from the existing party apparatus, well, run a contested primary. The people who do that work - registering, persuading and turning out voters, can take over the local structure of a party and win from the left.

And btw, if you're struggling to persuade others, don't give up. Get your egalitarian club together, and instead of complaining about how others don't get it, role play conversations with different types of voters, put your beer down, and go back out on the doors.

It's not actually complicated. Just hard work.

patrick , February 26, 2017 at 1:42 pm

Well put PH.

marku52 , February 26, 2017 at 2:54 pm

"Blue Dogs are confident Progressives cannot win in rural states. We must prove them wrong."

That's just been done, in Texas, of all places. Local organizing, person to person contact, and no TV money led to success. The exact opposite of HRC's campaign, of course.

It's a hopeful story, go read it.

http://harpers.org/archive/2017/03/texas-is-the-future/

Anti-Schmoo , February 26, 2017 at 7:31 am

American citizens are at the bottom of the bucket; shut up, stay poor, and forget the "myth" of a middle class.
These are some very simple truths, which Usian's seem loathe to accept or understand.
The evidence is clear with almost every comment offering nonsense solutions; year after precious year; ad infinitum
If there is a solution; I have no idea what that would be. But knowing and understanding the reality on the ground, gives a firm place to stand.
It's a place to start

allan , February 26, 2017 at 7:37 am

There is no better sign of the contempt that the Democratic leadership has for its constituents t
han the way Donna Edwards was treated in the primary for the open Senate seat from Maryland.
Maryland being Maryland, whoever won the Democrat primary was going to win the general.
The two leading candidates were Chris van Hollen, a slick fundraiser
high in Pelosi's train wreck House leadership,
and Donna Edwards, an African-American who was one of the most progressive House members.

Almost the entire Dem power structure (and, of course, the WaPo) went after Edwards guns blazing.
Oddly, Edwards critics were never accused of sexism or racism by Clinton supporters. Weird.

The DNC is important, but only part of the story. The DSCC and DCCC have been horror shows for years,
led by incompetent clowns, corporate fronts, or (in the case of Jon Tester, who ran the DSCC this past cycle),
sock puppets for people like Schumer.

And yet it seems to be impossible to discuss this stuff rationally with many Democrats.
Far easier for them to blame the party's woes on BernieBros.

human , February 26, 2017 at 12:41 pm

Or their support for Zephyr Teachout over Cuomo /s

There's a special place in Hell (and all that)

BeliTsari , February 26, 2017 at 8:03 am

Jeepers, you don't think some YOOJ, classy K Street "social networking advocacy solutions" firm will now be tasked to slap together a grassroots, Cumbaya warbling Democratic Socialist lemming forking oh, that's right been there, dun did that? We can't mock Trump's craven churls, spoon-fed C & K Street's große Lüge without turning the selfie-cam around on our geriatric children's crusade, awaiting some canny carny barker messiah?

RickM , February 26, 2017 at 8:21 am

Ha! I lost a good friend because I told him in November 2015 that if it comes down to Hillary Clinton v. Donald Trump, she will lose the state-by-state contest while winning the popular vote, notwithstanding polls to the contrary. I didn't let up on that obviously correct assessment through all of 2016, and he finally told me my intellectual arguments rank down there with some of his fundamentalist relatives. Another was still predicting a Hillary landslide until 10:00 pm EST on Election Night. She is big on the "Stupid Trump Voters" meme, while blaming "me" for the outcome. Everyone needs to face the truth. The national Democrats only care about their membership in the Establishment, even if they are relegated to "inconsequential" as they are overtaken by events due to their abject fecklessness.

So be it. From 1974-2008 I voted for the Democrat as the "Left Wing of the Possible," in Michael Harrington's phrase, and for at least 20 years too long. Never again. As my brief colloquy here with a reader last night concluded, it's time to rejoin DSA as an elder and raise even more hell with the "kids"!

Katharine , February 26, 2017 at 9:14 am

I will continue to evaluate candidates on their merits, not their party affiliation. I can't stop donating to the party organization, since I did that years ago, but I can certainly tell it where to get off, whether in phone calls or using its reply-paid envelopes. I realize what travels in those may never be read by anyone but a data-entry clerk, if indeed they bother to enter the data, which I've always doubted.

Kokuanani , February 26, 2017 at 9:42 am

Well, I have to say that the volume of DNC et al. mail I receive has fallen to a trickle since I spent the past year returning their pre-paid donation envelopes with nasty comments. The pleading e-mails are gone as well. So someone is entering data.

SpringTexan , February 26, 2017 at 10:11 am

Yeah I always send those back with a note and usually a column explaining exactly how bad they are, whatever recent I've read that's good.

Vatch , February 26, 2017 at 12:15 pm

RickM, I'm curious. Do you know whether your former friend has seen either of these two recent articles?

Thomas Frank: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/nov/09/donald-trump-white-house-hillary-clinton-liberals

Matt Stoller: https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2017/01/12/democrats-cant-win-until-they-recognize-how-bad-obamas-financial-policies-were/

If a Hillary or Obama supporter has an open mind (yes, a few of them do have open minds - a Hillary supporter in my family admitted to me that Bernie would have been a better choice), these two articles can help them to understand what's been happening.

nycTerrierist , February 26, 2017 at 12:39 pm

Thanks for the great recap by Stoller.

RickM , February 26, 2017 at 1:44 pm

Vatch: Let me try this again; first reply disappeared Beginning in early 2016 I tried to convince my liberal friends with facts such as those in your links, with no success whatsoever. Most of them stick to the "Stupid Trump Voter" meme, even when confronted with the work of Thomas Frank in Listen, Liberals and Ellie Russell Hochschild in Strangers in Their Own Land , which perfectly describes my many cousins in Louisiana, not one of whom is stupid to my knowledge. Different, yes, and for damn good reasons. Stupid, no. You can't be stupid and survive on an offshore oil rig. My particular liberals go no deeper than Rachel Maddow, whose Stanford-Oxford/Rhodes Scholar pedigree is all the authority they need. It goes without saying that Wellesley-Yale was/is just as authoritative, now and forevermore. Their epistemic closure/confirmation bias is simply the opposite side of the same coin the Tea Party or Alt-Right uses to explain markets or climate change or liberal fascism. As the president would say, "Sad!"

Vatch , February 26, 2017 at 2:59 pm

Well, you tried. As Yves pointed out in her introduction, there are aspects of cultish thought processes here.

Of course the Obots and Hillaristas aren't the only cult members. Limbaugh's ditto-heads. some of the tea-partiers, and some of Trump's more enthusiastic supporters also fit that mold. I don't like to say this, but some of Bernie's supporters probably also qualify. Open mindedness can require a lot of effort.

David , February 26, 2017 at 8:59 am

I became a more active commenter on PoliticalWire during the primary season and was subject to considerable vitriol due to my lack of enthusiasm for HRC, which only increased in amount after the election when I refused to vote for her (going 3rd party instead). I hung on for a little while, trying to make my points re where I thought the country needed to go, but have simply stopped participating in the discussions as I realized that the system has to run its course and I am not going to be able to change that. And slamming one's head against a brick wall repeatedly does begin to hurt after a while. I think I'll just use my vote to support those I policies I think are good, or at the very least to block any candidates supported by the establishment. It isn't much, but it is something.

Benedict@Large , February 26, 2017 at 1:30 pm

+1

Indeed, slamming one's head against a brick wall repeatedly does begin to hurt after a while.

marku52 , February 26, 2017 at 3:05 pm

I used was a regular reader of Kevin Drum for probably 10 years or so, back to the CalPundit days. The commentariat there became really hostile to any outside ideas as the primary wore on. The Closure is now complete, although some of the the really hostile commenters have disappeared (their David Brock paychecks stopped, I suppose) but still reality can't come into play. Even Drum himself was changing weekly about the loss (It's BernieBros! It's Comey! NO, it's the Russians! NO Wait, it's Comey)

Sad, he's done great work on lead and violent crime. I check in there once in a while just to take the temperature of the Delusion of the TenPercenters.

Self reflection still hasn't penetrated for any of the real reasons for Trump

Gman , February 26, 2017 at 9:00 am

A Paul Street quote from his excellent piece in CounterPunch entitled, 'Liberal Hypocrisy, "Late-Shaming," and Russia-Blaming in the Age of Trump,' should serve as an adequate riposte to the introspection and self-criticism averse Mr Doe,

'Arrogant liberals' partisan hypocrisy, overlaid with heavy doses of bourgeois identity politics and professional-class contempt for working class whites, is no tiny part of how and why the Democrats have handed all three branches of the federal government along with most state governments and the white working class vote to the ever more radically reactionary, white-nationalist Republican Party. Ordinary people can smell the rank two-facedness of it all, believe it or not. They want nothing to do with snotty know-it-all liberals who give dismal dollar Dems a pass on policies liberals only seem capable of denouncing when they are enacted by nasty Republicans.

Contrary to my online rant, much of the liberal Democratic campus-town crowd seems to feel if anything validated – yes, validated. of all things – by the awfulness of Herr Trump. It exhibits no capacity for shame or self-criticism, even in the wake of their politics having collapsed at the presidential, Congressional, and state levels.'

http://www.counterpunch.org/2017/02/24/liberal-hypocrisy-late-shaming-and-russia-blaming-in-the-age-of-trump/

'

flora , February 26, 2017 at 12:12 pm

"much of the liberal Democratic campus-town crowd seems to feel if anything validated – yes, validated. of all things – by the awfulness of Herr Trump."

I've noticed the same. My guess is that, imo, the Dem estab has spent years teaching it's more left-ish base to accept losing – veal pen, 'f*cking hippies', Dem estab suggest marching for a cause then fail to support cause, march to show numbers and get nothing, elect Dem full control in 2008 and lose single-payer, end of Iraq war, roll back Bush tax cuts, renegotiate Nafta, etc. Lucy and the football. The left-ish part of the party has been groomed over 30 years to accept losing its fights. When Trump wins it just confirms "the way things are." No introspection required since it confirms the trained outlook. imo.

Katharine , February 26, 2017 at 9:06 am

This opinion masquerading as news appeared in The Sun:

Both Perez and his leading opponent, Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison, had rejected the left-versus-centrist narrative that developed around the race, and close observers agreed it was overblown.

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/politics/bs-md-perez-dnc-20170225-story.html#nt=oft12aH-1li3

Close observers? Try hookah-smoking caterpillars.

PH , February 26, 2017 at 9:10 am

People often have an emotional commitment to their candidate. Upon losing, all Hillary supporters will not go "oh well." Many will be upset.

Better to focus on issues going forward.

Also, if you want to build a majority party, probably best not to devote ALL your energy to screaming what clueless assholes most ordinary Americans are. Most ordinary Americans do not agree with commenters here. One reason Blue Dogs are so willing to ignore you.

You can come up with lots of reasons. There are lots of reasons. But bottom line is that you not only have to be right; you have to convince.

And no, collapse of the world will not convince. It may make you feel like there is proof you were right, but that is a hollow victory.

We have to win elections. To do that, we need a generous and positive message. And we need the votes of many Democrats that will not agree with you on some things - perhaps many things.

It can be done. It will be difficult. But it can be done.

Most people with ridiculous political ideas are nice people. There are positive appeals that will work over time.

Angry and haughty is not the formula.

funemployed , February 26, 2017 at 2:12 pm

+1000

Tony , February 26, 2017 at 9:46 am

It is amazing how many people are still incapable of acknowledging how bad a candidate HRC was and how far they reach to come up with other reasons for her loss. I grew up in Midwest and have many friends and family who voted for Trump not because they liked him but because they found Clinton even more unappealing and even less trustworthy.

They looked at how the Clintons made tens of millions of dollars, Bill Clinton's decades of predatory behavior towards women, the hubris, lack of responsibility and poor decision making related to the Email issues and HRC's unwillingness to even minimally tend to her health and physically prepare for the months of campaigning. Her candidacy was based on years of amassing money and power and entitlement. Other than the potential to elect the first female president, there was absolutely nothing about HRC that was inherently appealing.

It was an extraordinary challenge to field a candidate even more unappealing than Trump to millions of swing voters, but the Democrats managed to do it. The Clintons are finished, over and have tarnished themselves for history. Anyone who could even imagine a 2020 HRC candidacy is delusional.

Benedict@Large , February 26, 2017 at 1:40 pm

Other than the potential to elect the first female president, there was absolutely nothing about HRC that was inherently appealing.

Indeed.

Anyone who could even imagine a 2020 HRC candidacy is delusional.

They will do it simply to mash her in our faces.

Remember, their goal is not to win. It is to keep us out. Running Hillary again serves that end just fine.

aliteralmind , February 26, 2017 at 2:31 pm

Remember, their goal is not to win. It is to keep us out. Running Hillary again serves that end just fine.

Wow. That's it. They'd rather drown true progressives than win.

jsn , February 26, 2017 at 3:43 pm

So true.

But most progressives can't bring themselves to believe it until they find themselves being held with their own heads underwater.

Needless to say, the survivors tend to be somewhat radicalized!

JL , February 26, 2017 at 4:56 pm

Pretty much everything you claim drives people away from Clinton applies just as well to Trump. Look at how Trump made millions of dollars: sticking investors with losses, tax law arbitrage, and above all inheriting then failing to keep up with major equity indexes. Look at his hubris, and decades of predatory behavior towards women, e.g. behaviors related to the pageant he finances. Look at his history of poor decision making in business resulting in numerous bankruptcies. One thing is true, he did make deals that were good for himself: even as business ventures collapsed and other investors lost money, Trump personally usually had very limited losses. To my mind that's exactly the wrong kind of behavior we want for a president though.

I readily agree that HRC ran a flawed campaign with little to draw undecided voters, but even so there's a deep Clinton hatred in this country I've never understood. A large fraction of the population appears to view both Bill and Hillary as the coming of the anti-christ, for no good reason. That is, the Clintons seem to be pretty much garden-variety politicians with all the usual skeletons in the closet, but nothing that seems to stand out from the rest of the Washington ilk. If the hatred came from leftists betrayal could explain it, but most Clinton-haters seem to be deeply conservative. Maybe I was too young during the WJC years to understand the source.

oho , February 26, 2017 at 10:21 am

Gonna beat a belabored dead horse: "Superpredators" + "bring them to heel" + a campaign devoted to the identity politics of undocumented migration and not the plight of lower-class whites and African-Americans.

African-Americans have Facebook accounts and access to Youtube.

The 30,000-feet pundits glossed it and declared everything A-OK over but that 1996 archive footage left a viscerally bitter taste at street level.

aliteralmind , February 26, 2017 at 2:33 pm

African-Americans have Facebook accounts and access to Youtube.

At least for now they do. The internet as we know it is slowly going away.

flora , February 26, 2017 at 10:46 am

"it's remarkable to see how childish and self-destructive the posture of the orthodox Dem backers is. It isn't just the vitriol, self-righteousness, and authoritarianism, as if they have the authority to dictate rules and those who fail to comply can and must be beaten into line.

Sounds kinda like a cult.

I've run into this. My response is a blank stare followed by a vocally flat "oh" to whatever nonsense I'm hearing. I have the same response to very young children who are trying to tell me something. Although, with little children I try to smile and stay engaged.

flora , February 26, 2017 at 10:57 am

adding:
per Jeff – "It seems that my friends, my friends' friends, and I are exclusively to blame for the Trump Presidency and the Republican takeover of government."

Hillary was wooing the suburban GOP voters, not the working class industrial belt voters. Really, it's the suburban GOP voters' fault Trump won. /s

dbk , February 26, 2017 at 10:53 am

I appreciate two posts on this subject, which given the presumed insignificance and technocratic nature of the position (!), aroused a lot of ire on both sides of the Demo divide. (Anyone interested in real ire can just head over to LGM, where iirc four threads and about 2,000 comments have now been devoted to this topic of "nothing to see here, let's move on").

What is left to say, I wonder? What's the way forward for progressives who are genuinely interested in supporting possibly-radical new approaches to addressing economic inequality?

It occurred to me while reading the comments on this and the previous post that perhaps after all, it's not that ways forward are unknown to the legacy party members, but that they're unacceptable, because they would genuinely lessen the gap between rich-poor.

If so (and I'm starting to feel that this is the case), then working within the party could be quite difficult, although the arguments against 3rd party start-ups are compelling. There was a great quote from Bill Domhoff on this subject upthread with a powerful argument for continuing to work within the existing structures.

Apropos of Domhoff, I was thinking that one way might be to continue to work within the party, but to distinguish the progressive wing clearly, perhaps with a new name – I like Domhoff's Egalitarian Democratic Party, it sort of reminded me of Minnesota's DFL (Democratic Farmer Labor) party. As others have noted on both threads, this would need to be purely grass-roots, local-to-state level work, and as Domhoff wisely notes, candidates need to be identified and encouraged to run for, well, everything. They would need to caucus with the Dems at the state level, but eventually could force Dems, if they gain sufficient numbers, to shift their positions on economic issues, thereby creating momentum.

These past few days, I've most enjoyed reading comments from people who are getting involved at the local level – that's so heartening. And also, I've watched a good number of Town Hall meetings – the crowds are also heartening, even if I wouldn't always have chosen the issues individual constituents addressed. This massive awakening and interest in political life across the country – I want to believe something positive will come of it.

Joel Caris , February 26, 2017 at 12:18 pm

I kind of wonder if a "Working Democrats" title would have a shot at catching on, coupled with a heavy focus on strong, universal economic policies: Medicare for All, $15 minimum wage, some kind of student loan debt forgiveness, Glass-Steagall reinstatement, a constitutional amendment removing corporate personhood.

Hell, couldn't that seriously catch on in today's environment?

NotTimothyGeithner , February 26, 2017 at 12:27 pm

Not to be that guy, but the problem is the perception the Democratic Party cares about those things and nostalgia.

The black guy with the Muslim sounding name became President while promising higher taxes, fair trade, and universal healthcare (perception matters) while running against a war crazy veteran and a war crazy lunatic who claim so to have dodged bullets.

Joel Caris , February 26, 2017 at 12:52 pm

I'm not sure I follow. Are you saying that the problem with such a move is it would be too easily co-opted due in part to too many people thinking the Democrats actually stand for these policies, despite the fact that the majority of them and the party apparatus actively works to undermine any movement in these directions?

Fair point if so. I think any such work via a faction within the party, so to speak, would have to make itself clear to those who have lost faith in the Democratic Party by taking active stances against the establishment and exhibiting some level of hostility toward a good faction of Democrats.

I would be all for a third party coalescence, but I'm sympathetic toward the idea that third parties simply don't get traction in our political system. So I lean a bit more toward an attempted hostile takeover of the Democratic Party. On the other hand, party's die; it may be that a third party route could work as a replacement for the Democrats once they die from actively abusing and thus hemorrhaging their base.

Alternatively, both approaches could work. A wing of the party actively hostile toward the establishment could jump ship to a third party if the Democrats were dying, joining forces to establish the replacement party. Or the vice versa could happen; if a progressive wing appeared to truly be winning and taking control of the Democrats, a sympathetic third party movement could jump in for the final push to clean house and reinvent the party from scratch.

I think it still comes back to the need for active movements and organizing around clear policies and principles, then taking the opportunity to gain nationwide traction whenever and however it presents itself. Personally, I just wish I had a clearer idea of where such efforts on my part would be best focused. (It's somewhat complicated by being in Portland, Oregon and having some decent Dems here, though there's still a lot of terrible ones and even the good ones I'm still wary of.)

drb48 , February 26, 2017 at 11:09 am

The Wall Street/establishment wing of the party has clearly learned nothing from the debacle of the last election and is clearly unwilling to learn. Sadly the same seems to be true for the "progressive" wing of the party – i.e. WheresOurTeddy has it exactly right IMHO but the "left" still won't abandon the dead hulk of FDR's party – which has rejected everything it formerly stood for – if the calls for "unity" from Ellison and others are any indication.

simham , February 26, 2017 at 11:13 am

CHANGE will happen until the stock market crashes or a MAJOR war occurs.

funemployed , February 26, 2017 at 2:34 pm

major wars don't happen anymore cause MAD. If one does, well, MAD.

aliteralmind , February 26, 2017 at 3:04 pm

I honestly don't see how things will truly get better, except with a lot of people suffering or dying. It seems that we're in this desperate last-gasp phase of trying to work a system that's supposed to be just, but hasn't been for decades. My entire life.

On Friday I witnessed the NJ Pinelands Commission vote for a 15 mile pipeline that should never have been approved. It's substantilaly for profit and export. They voted while 800 people were screaming their opposition, after five years of fierce opposition. Literally tallied the votes during the screaming. This is the commission whose mission is to "preserve, protect, and enhance the natural and cultural resources of the Pinelands National Reserve." It was approved by a 9-5 vote. That's how far Governor Christie and big money has gamed the system.

Billionaires get to throw hired hands in between us and them (like politicians and police and receptionists and PR staff everyone's just "doing their job!" we are "rude" if we fight them because they have nothing to do with it!), we have to risk our bodies and time directly. We have to organize masses of people with hardly any resources and a diminishing internet, they write a check and get hired professionals with access to do their bidding as they sit in their comfy third homes. They write the procedures and laws, we get to yell and scream for ten minutes, then our voices tire and their decisions get rammed through anyway.

Oh, and they had a public comment AFTER the vote, which was in the agenda not as "vote" but "approve with conditions."

Something's gotta give.

Ep3 , February 26, 2017 at 11:36 am

What about us in Michigan? We have been manipulated and mentally changed from a strong union democratic state to a redneck, "wannabe backwards early 1900s southern state" that maintains a governor who knowingly fed thousands of people lead tainted water. And he continues to do nothing about it. If we do anything about it, the republican legislature will just gerrymander our districts again to maintain their power. I live in a district shaped like a banana, running east to west in the middle of the lower peninsula. 80% of the district (US house seat) has always been strong democratic. But the district was re shaped in the early nineties so that it was extended forty miles east to encompass a county that was once known as the capital of the KKK in Michigan. This swung the majority to republican. They are a minority, but with all the money.
As I was saying to someone yesterday, when I say something like "I don't like obamacare either", it is automatically assumed that I want trump & Paul Ryan to hand out vouchers. Yet when I follow up by stating I want Medicare for all, I am called a crazy Hillary loving liberal.

Katharine , February 26, 2017 at 12:00 pm

Well, you can always say scornfully that she never wanted anything as good for people as Medicare for all. But it's tough being in a spot like that. There is a relative of an inlaw whom I admire enormously because, living in a conservative rural area she nevertheless firmly states her progressive opinions, if necessary finishing up, "Anyway, that's what I think," in a way that let's people know she has formed her opinion and will not be changing it merely for fact-free hostile criticism. It takes amazing steadfastness to go on doing that.

EyeRound , February 26, 2017 at 2:28 pm

I live in a district shaped like a banana

Here in upstate NY my (state assembly) district's shape was once described as "Abe Lincoln riding on a vacuum cleaner." Like the one you describe, it was carefully constructed to include a wealthy minority so as to ensure that the "right" candidate always wins.

EyeRound , February 26, 2017 at 12:03 pm

"Do what I want. That's unity." Wasn't that one of W's wise injunctions? Now we hear it in motherly tones in HRC's video released on Friday. Is this anything like her debate response to Bernie, "I get things done. That's progress. (Therefore) I'm a progressive!"? Always need to look for what this kind of word-salad leaves out.

A note as to the Establishment Dems: In the Dem primary race there were 800 or so "Super Delegates" and almost all of them were locked into HRC before the primary race began. At the convention all but about 25 of them cast their votes for HRC. (Sorry, I don't have exact numbers.)

Now, who are these 435 Dem Party luminaries who are tasked with electing the DNC Chair? Am I right to assume that they are a carved-out chunk of the Super Delegates of yore? If I am, then the Establishment Dems are in big trouble, and they know it just from the numbers.

In other words, 200 of the 435 just voted for Sanders by proxy of Ellison. That's half. If half of the Super Delegates had voted for the Sanders wing at the convention, wouldn't Sanders have been the Dem candidate?

What we are seeing in the dulcet tones of HRC's "unity" video, together with the power punch of the monied interests in the DNC, is the public face of a party in panic, digging in with all of its claws. From this it seems that Bernie is a bigger threat than many folks may realize.

I don't mean to be Pollyanna-ish here. It's anybody's guess as to what to do with this state of affairs. But perhaps Bernie is on the right track with his efforts to take over the Dem Party?

With that in mind, the real dividing-line is wealth vs. poverty, income inequality, etc.,

mpr , February 26, 2017 at 1:44 pm

"If half of the Super Delegates had voted for the Sanders wing at the convention, wouldn't Sanders have been the Dem candidate?"

Uh, no because HRC got a clear majority of the elected delegates and 3.5m more votes in the primary. But hey, don't let me disturb your alternate reality, and enjoy the next four years !

tegnost , February 26, 2017 at 1:59 pm

your reality was created from whole cloth
http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/04/new-york-primary-voter-purge

Those mean chair throwing bernie bros!
http://www.politifact.com/nevada/statements/2016/may/18/jeff-weaver/allegations-fraud-and-misconduct-nevada-democratic/
Can you say Debbie Wasserman Schultz?
How about Donna ( http://www.mediaite.com/tv/new-email-shows-donna-brazile-also-gave-clinton-questions-before-cnn-presidential-debate/ ) Brazile?
I'll think I'll stick with my alternate reality, you can keep your fake one.

tegnost , February 26, 2017 at 2:11 pm

and to your vote tally caucus states don't vote, the popular vote total of the primary is a meaningless comp

mpr , February 26, 2017 at 4:47 pm

True, if caucus states did vote (i.e. were democratic) HRC would have won by even more. See e.g http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/politics/wash-primary1/ . I'm sure if the roles were reversed here you'd be screaming that the corrupt DNC was ignoring the democratic vote in favor of an undemocratic caucus.

But, as I said, enjoy the next four year. Maybe you really will – Trump is the alternate reality candidate after all.

aliteralmind , February 26, 2017 at 3:11 pm

I wouldn't exactly call it clear .

Eureka Springs , February 26, 2017 at 12:38 pm

Some of the things I want from a party.

A democratic process within. Establish polling and voting by all members, not some final 400 or super delegates.
The party writes, debates and endorses legislation, not lobbyists.
A serious cap on contributions. Complete immediate transparency on all money matters.
Issue based platform long before leadership or candidates.
A way which leadership or candidates and office holders must adhere to the party platform. Example if the party platform says expanded Single Payer (HR 676) for all then a vote for ACA would have been grounds for immediate removal from the party for sitting Reps. Note that would have meant basically every sitting prog would have received the boot. We would have all been better served had we primaried all of our so-called own long ago (including Sanders and Kucinich).

At the very least this should be established by a prog like wing within a party. For we have no way in which to hold usurpers to account.. or keep the eye sharply focused on issues. That's the lesson from '06 '08 '10. So many act blue/blue America candidates lied and to this day they continue to be among the least scrutinized.

I didn't see Sanders, Ellison etc. heading this way had they won. I don't see it in any existing third party.

LT , February 26, 2017 at 1:20 pm

There it is in black and white: the "new red scare" about Russia enabling feeble minds to be dismissive of criticisms about the establishment.

Donald , February 26, 2017 at 1:47 pm

Testing. I tried posting a long comment and it didn't make it.

Short version–Sanders did everything people said Nader should have done and Sanders was still treated like a pariah, so the self described pragmatists are really the intolerant fanatics. There was more, but I don't feel like retyping it, especially if I am having technical difficulties posting.

PH , February 26, 2017 at 2:13 pm

I agree that Sanders ran A primary campaign instead of third party, and so answered a big establishment talking point.

Beyond that, I see the campaigns as vastly different. Nader campaigned at the end of a long bubble. Bernie campaigned after the financial collapse and after years of doing nothing to help ordinary people.

I think Bernie's campaign was more powerful, and gives more of a springboard for future campaigns.

mike , February 26, 2017 at 2:59 pm

The part before the byline is reasonable and interesting. The DNC is acting to preserve their own power, not to win elections. Classic "iron law of oligarchy" stuff.

The part after the byline is less interesting. Why do we care what some anonymous guy on facebook says? Of what interest is there in a facebook argument between an activist and some rando? Is this more notable than a thousand other political arguments on facebook that occur every day?

Dan Brooks has written about the practice of "eggmanning", as a sort of counterpart to strawmanning– you can find people making basically any argument on social media, no matter how specious. http://combatblog.net/tom-hitchner-on-refuting-the-argument-no-one-is-making/ Elevating the voice of such a person just so you can dismantle their poorly chosen words does not make for compelling reading.

Sound of the Suburbs , February 26, 2017 at 2:59 pm

Mapping US / UK politics

Right – Tories / Conservatives / Republicans

Elitist Left – Whigs / Liberals / Neo-liberals / Democrats

Real Left – Labour (the US is not allowed this option)

You need a real left, liberals are not the real left.

Liberals have over-run the Labour party in the UK but progress is under-way to get things back to the way they should be.

Universal suffrage came along and the workers wanted a party of the left that represented them and wasn't full of elitist, left liberals.

The US has never allowed the common man and woman to have a party of their own, they need one, a real left not a liberal, elitist left descended from the Whigs.

Glen , February 26, 2017 at 3:04 pm

Well, I haven't voted Dem in the last two Presidential elections so no big loss.

It's the other thirty years of voting Dem that I wonder about. Maybe I could have made a difference back then.

TMc , February 26, 2017 at 3:45 pm

This all makes me think the Democratic establishment are not honest actors. They would rather meekly accept corporate money and play the part of the always losing Washington Generals rather than come out swinging for progressive values.

habenicht , February 26, 2017 at 3:50 pm

As these events unfold, I think there is an application of Upton's SInclair's famous observation:

"It is difficult to get a man (or in this case party) to understand something when his job depends on not understanding it."

Gaylord , February 26, 2017 at 3:54 pm

"If voting made any difference, they wouldn't let us do it"
- George Carlin

[Feb 26, 2017] They have no idea how crooked you need to be to fund a party operation

Feb 26, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
jonny bakho -> Peter K.... , February 25, 2017 at 10:26 AM
The DNC head is the chief fundraiser for the party.
DNC raises and distributes money
The DNC needs to be able to collect money from donors across the spectrum
DNC does not control policy or issues.

Sanders supporters who think this is about policy never bothered to learn about how the party they tried to take over works.

pgl -> jonny bakho... , February 25, 2017 at 12:11 PM
"DNC does not control policy or issues. Sanders supporters who think this is about policy never bothered to learn about how the party they tried to take over works."

But who controls the money controls a lot more. We are on the 2nd round and it will be close. I'm for Ellison for reasons Max Sawicky's excellent new blog articulated. If Perez pulls this off - he has a lot of fence mending to do.

jonny bakho -> pgl... , February 25, 2017 at 12:19 PM
Oh Please.
The Local Sanders supporters are already engaged locally.
The whiners will complain about Ellison if he should win
The first time Ellison takes money from big donors they will disown him.
They have no idea what it takes to fund a party operation.
Breitbart and the GOP are cheering the whiners on
pgl -> jonny bakho... , February 25, 2017 at 12:29 PM
Perez won and then asked for Ellison to be his vice chairman. For now - it is all hugs and kisses in Atlanta. Let's see how long this lasts.
ilsm -> jonny bakho... , February 25, 2017 at 12:51 PM
They have no idea how crooked you need to be to fund a party operation
jonny bakho -> pgl... , February 25, 2017 at 01:08 PM
The policy debates are won at groups that will form the ultimate coalition for candidate support. Say your interest is public schools. The group supporting your local school is horrified that vouchers are taking away the money. The group builds support for the anti voucher position. A union group wants more job training opportunities. An energy group wants solar metering. These groups have their own agenda separate from the DNC and RNC and they bring together groups of like minded individuals who socialize in addition to their advocacy. When the election comes, they are positioned to work for candidates that agree with their position. The candidate can get some of them to volunteer for the campaign, but their is a need for voter lists, support for registration, etc.

The issue for Sanders supporters is they rallied around a messianic leader without much local group persistence. If those supporters want to help in the next election, the would be advised to build advocacy support within their social groups.

pgl -> pgl... , February 25, 2017 at 12:30 PM
The update and analysis from Max is already up:

http://thepopulist.buzz/2017/02/25/dnc-vote-establishment-1-progressives-0/

jonny bakho -> pgl... , February 25, 2017 at 12:41 PM
Max is not correct
In my phone banking last election, the most numerous complaint I received was:
"Everything is going to the black and the gays".
The Catholics and Christian Right voted for antiabortion SCOTUS justices
Our state, IN is trying to make it impossible for minors to get abortions and doing their best to create conditions for a black market
The people we need to persuade don't care about the DNC
For the most part, local activists don't care either as long as whoever wins will successfully raise a lot of money and provide the training and tools we need
pgl -> jonny bakho... , February 25, 2017 at 01:13 PM
You articulate your case indeed. And your list for the policy agenda is well noted. I would love to see you and Max Sawicky engage in a debate of these things. Like you - he is never shy of stating his views.

In the olden says, his blog Max Speaks You Listen was often cited by many left of center economists. He had to go silent as he worked within the government but now he is free of that restriction. I don't always agree with him but I do admire his style.

[Feb 20, 2017] Trump sold to Russia is Clintonista fantasia sold by the yellow press

Feb 20, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
New Deal democrat -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 20, 2017 at 05:06 AM
Well, even without the FT telling us, it seems obvious that Trump, a real estate developer who loves debt, is going to want an easy money policy. So he will presumably stock the Fed with cronies who want interest rates reduced back to zero or even lower if possible, with no restrictions (like reserves) on borrowing.

He probably won't be able to gain actual control of the Fed until Yellen's term is over, and it is certainly possible that by that time he will have been removed from office (as we have discussed, this latter possibility depends on Trump having alienated enough GOP voters that the GOP establishment feels it can removed him and install Pence without losing primary challenges).

I suspect that a combination of easy money and stagnant wages is not something that can last long. But so far I have been unable to find a historical example. Certainly in the US, the 1970s do not fit (wages grew as well as inflation), nor 1948 (inflation was 20% or more, but at the pinnacle of union power wages also grew by at least as much. 1948 was an inventory correction, like 2001 but if anything actually milder). Maybe 1920 comes close, but I haven't examined wages from that time.

Does anybody else know of an easy money/high inflation/stagnant wage historical example?

RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> New Deal democrat... , February 20, 2017 at 06:09 AM
There is an alternative view that aligns Trump with high interest rent seeking gold bugs. I don't know which is true. It may even be true that behind all of the bravado that Trump actually knows how deep in over his head that he is with regards to monetary policy. In that case he would protest a lot to the contrary while unceremoniously seeking to preserve the status quo at the Fed. Certainly your guess is as good as mine and probably even better. OTOH, nothing is certain with Trump.
ilsm -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 20, 2017 at 06:39 AM
Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS). Spread by neolib propaganda organs claiming to be the "free" press.

More dangerous than Obama's deep state wiretapping republicans and raping the Bill of Rights falsely screaming 'Trump the traitor'!

There is no freedom to lie and to mislead 'we the people'.

New Deal democrat -> ilsm... , February 20, 2017 at 07:34 AM
At risk of being flamed by everybody else with an opinion on this matter, I can see both sides of the issue:

You are correct if Trump is not selling out to Russia.

You are also correct if (1) Trump *is* selling out to Russia, *AND* (2) his voters were aware that he is selling out to Russia, but voted for him with eyes wide open on that issue.

In either of those two cases the Intelligence Community leakers are trying to subvert the democratic will of the people in elected Trump president.

You are wrong if: (1) Trump is selling out to Russia, *AND* (2) his voters did not believe it when they voted for him. In this case the Intelligence Community leakers, in my opinion, are patriotic heroes.

Just because the Intellligence Community is not laying the sources of its intelligence out in the open on the table does not mean that the leakers are wrong. My suspicion is that they are correct (see, e.g., Josh Marshall today. Google is your friend.) The deeper problem is that I suspect Trump's voters simply don't care, even if the Intelligence Community is correct.

RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> New Deal democrat... , February 20, 2017 at 08:07 AM
No flames from me, Dude. Ya nailed it.
ilsm -> New Deal democrat... , February 20, 2017 at 08:09 AM
I did a mini max regret: More regret with Clinton sold out to neoliberal profiteering war mongers who care only for perpetual war, the max regret I see is unneeded nuclear war over a few hundred thousand Estonians who hate Russia since the Hanseatic league was suppressed by Ivan the Terrible.

Lesser regret with Trump sold out to Russia* that would only bring China I against both US and Russia in about 50 years.

*Trump sold to Russia is Clintonista/Stalinist fantasia sold by the yellow press.

Julio -> New Deal democrat... , February 20, 2017 at 08:25 AM
I disagree. It is not enough that Trump voters were aware of Trump selling out to Russia and didn't care; if there had been conclusive proof of that before the election, other people might have come out to vote against him.

Besides, some of his voters might not care and some might.

In any case, whether the leakers are patriots or traitors does not have to do with subverting "the will of the people". At the most extreme, leaks could lead to, say, impeachment, which is another way to express the will of the people. (Or actually, the will of the plutocrats and their Republican and Democratic running dogs, but that's another discussion).

ilsm -> Julio ... , February 20, 2017 at 04:54 PM
Read this:

http://thefreethoughtproject.com/deep-state-trump-dangerous-washington/

It concerns "deep State" treason, a deep state built by democrats working for Clinton, attempting a coup!

It is time to stand with the US constitution against the deep state!

Julio -> ilsm... , February 20, 2017 at 05:29 PM
It has always been time to stand for the Constitution and against the deep state.

And you really think this was built by democrats and Clinton? Since you are about my age, I'll keep it brief and just say one word: COINTELPRO.

And it's not either or. There are plenty of bad actors, some as dangerous as the spooks. E.g. a President that believes we're in an existential war against Islam, and who is likely pull every trigger available to him if some Muslim stages an attack in the US. Frankly, if such a time comes I'll feel safer thinking that Trump and the spooks at not working too closely together.

libezkova -> ilsm... , February 20, 2017 at 11:59 AM
New Deal democrat and couple of other Hillary enthusiasts here used to sing quite a different song as for Hillary bathroom email server ;-).

Russia bogeyman (or "ruse" as Trump aptly defined it) is now used to swipe under the carpet the crisis of neoliberal ideology and the collapse of Democratic Party which is still dominated by Clinton wing of soft neoliberals). Chickhawks like a couple of people here (for example, im1dc), are always want to fight another war, but using some other ("less valuable") peoples bodies as the target of enemy fire.

Democratic Party now is playing an old and very dirty trick called "Catch the thief", when they are the thief.

Why we are not discussing the key issue: how the redistribution of wealth up during the last two decades destabilized the country both economically and politically?

Also it is unclear whether a simple, non-painful way out exists, or this is just something like a pre-collapse stage as happened with Brezhnev socialism in the USSR. The Damocles sword of "peak/plato oil" hangs over neoliberal globalization. That's an undeniable and a very important factor. Another ten (or twenty) years of the "secular stagnation", and then what? Can the current globalized economy function with oil prices above $100 without severe downsizing.

The economic plunder of other countries like the plunder of xUSSR economic space (which helped to save and return to growth the USA economics in 90th, providing half a billion new customers and huge space for "dollarization") is no longer possible as there are no any new USSR that can disintegrate.

Obama achievement of reinstalling neoliberal regimes in Brazil and Argentina ( https://nacla.org/news/2015/10/10/brazil%C2%B4s-sudden-neoliberal-u-turn ) was probably the "last hurrah" of neoliberalism, which is in retreat all over the globe.

And "artificial disintegration" of the countries to open them to neoliberal globalization (aka "controlled chaos") like practiced in Libya and Syria proved to be quite costly and have unforeseen side effects.

The forces that ensured Trump victory are forces that understood at least on intuitive level that huge problems with neoliberalism need something different that kicking the can down the road, and that Hillary might well means the subsequent economic collapse, or WWIII, or both.

Trump might not have a solution, but he was at least courageous enough to ask uncomfortable questions.

Blackmailing Russia can probably be viewed as just an attempt to avoid asking uncomfortable questions (Like who is guilty and who should go to jail ;-) , and to distract the attention from the real problems. As if the return us to the good old Obama days of universal deceit (aka "change we can believe in") , can solve the problems the country faces.

And when neoliberal presstitutes in MSM now blackmail Trump and try to stage "purple" color revolution, this might well be a sign of desperation, not strength.

They have no solution for the country problem, they just want to kick the can down the road and enjoy their privileges while the country burns.

As Galbright put it: "People of privilege will always risk their complete destruction rather than surrender any material part of their advantage." -- John Kenneth Galbraith

ilsm -> libezkova... , February 20, 2017 at 12:49 PM
libezkova,

The fake liberals directed the intelligence services to target the political opposition. Now the opposition is in power the intelligence services could be held to respond to their destruction of the US Bill of Rights.

It is not just the fake liberal economics the democrats will answer to in 2018.

In 15 months people like me will spend a lot of time reminding the democrats of their ignoble treatment of the US constitution because their neoliberal scam artist was defeated.

Julio -> ilsm... , February 20, 2017 at 05:35 PM
"Now the opposition is in power..."

Well, now I see very clearly why I disagree with you so much.

This government is the apotheosis of neoliberalism. I'm only sorry we didn't get the pure version with Mitt, instead of this one stained with a cabal of White Christian jihadis.

libezkova -> Julio ... , February 20, 2017 at 07:24 PM
Julio,

"This government is the apotheosis of neoliberalism."

I respectfully disagree. Trump neoliberalism is a "bastard neoliberalism" (or neoliberalism in a single county, in you wish) as he rejects globalization and wars for the expansion of the US led neoliberal empire.

New Deal democrat -> libezkova... , February 20, 2017 at 12:59 PM
I was a Bernie supporter, but thanks for playing.

[Feb 20, 2017] I am not impressed with the "integrity" and "judgement" of democrats, Anti-Trump protesters, Anti-Trump republicans, and those media who donated/endorsed Clinton during presidential election and they'll work for globalists, the super rich, who moved jobs/investment overseas

20am%20not%20impressed%20with%20the%2
Feb 20, 2017 | href="I%20am%20not%20impressed%20with%20the%20"integrity"%20and%20"judgement"%20of%20democrats,%20Anti-Trump%20protesters,%20Anti-Trump%20republicans,%20and%20those%20media%20who%20donated
wanglee Pinto Currency Feb 19, 2017 2:59 PM Not only democrats rigged Primary to elect Clinton as presidential candidate last year even though she has poor judgement (violating government cyber security policy) and is incompetent (her email server was not secured) when she was the Secretary of State, and was revealed to be corrupt by Bernie Sanders during the Primary, but also democrats encourage illegal immigration, discourage work, and "conned" young voters with free college/food/housing/health care/Obama phone. Democratic government employees/politicians also committed crimes to leak classified information which caused former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn losing his job and undermined Trump's presendency.

However middle/working class used their common senses voting against Clinton last November. Although I am not a republican and didn't vote in primary but I voted for Trump and those Republicans who supported Trump in last November since I am not impressed with the "integrity" and "judgement" of democrats, Anti-Trump protesters, Anti-Trump republicans, and those media who donated/endorsed Clinton during presidential election and they'll work for globalists, the super rich, who moved jobs/investment overseas for cheap labor/tax and demanded middle/working class to pay tax to support welfare of illegal aliens and refugees who will become globalist's illegal voters and anti-Trump protesters.

To prevent/detect voter fraud, "voter ID" and "no mailing ballots" must be enforced to reduce possible voter frauds on a massive scale committed by democratic/republic/independent operatives. All the sanctuary counties need to be recounted and voided respective county votes if needed since the only county which was found to count one vote many times is the only "Sanctuary" county, Wayne county, in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin during the recount last year. The integrity of voting equipment and voting system need to be protected, tested and audited. There were no voting equipment stuck to Trump. Yet, many voting equipment were found to switch votes to Clinton last November.

Cashing in: Illegal immigrants get $1,261 more welfare than American families, $5,692 vs. $4,431 ( http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/cashing-in-illegal-immigrants-get-1261... )

DEA Report Shows Infiltration of Mexican Drug Cartels in Sanctuary Cities ( http://www.breitbart.com/texas/2015/09/08/dea-report-shows-infiltration-... )

Welfare Discourages Work( http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/04/27/the-science-is-settle... )

Hillary Clinton Says Bernie Sanders's "Free College" Tuition Plan Is All a Lie ( http://www.teenvogue.com/story/clinton-says-sanders-free-tuition-wont-wo...

UC Berkeley Chancellor: Hillary Clinton 'Free' College Tuition Plan Won't Happen ( http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/09/30/uc-berkeley-chancello... )

Bill Clinton Impeachment Chief Investigator: I'm 'Terrified' of Hillary because we know that there were "People" who "Disappeared" ( http://www.breitbart.com/2016-presidential-race/2016/10/30/exclusive-bil... )

Former FBI Asst. Director Accuses Clintons Of Being A "Crime Family" ( http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-10-30/former-fbi-asst-director-accuse... )

FBI boss Comey's 7 most damning lines on Clinton ( http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/05/politics/fbi-clinton-email-server-comey-da... ).

Aides claiming she "could not use a computer," and didn't know her email password– New FBI docs ( https://www.rt.com/usa/360528-obama-implicated-clinton-email/ ).

23 Shocking Revelations From The FBI's Clinton Email Report ( http://dailycaller.com/2016/09/02/23-shocking-revelations-from-the-fbis-... )

DOJ grants immunity to ex-Clinton staffer who set up her email server ( http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/02/politics/hillary-clinton-email-server-just... )

Former House Intelligence Chairman: I'm '100 Percent' Sure Hillary's Server Was Hacked ( http://www.breitbart.com/2016-presidential-race/2016/11/06/former-house-... )

Exclusive - Gen. Mike Flynn: Hillary Clinton's Email Setup Was 'Unbelievable Active Criminal Behavior' ( http://www.breitbart.com/2016-presidential-race/2016/11/06/exclusive-gen... )

Clinton directed her maid to print out classified materials ( http://nypost.com/2016/11/06/clinton-directed-her-maid-to-print-out-clas... )

Obama lied to the American people about his secret communications with Clinton( http://www.thepoliticalinsider.com/president-barack-obama-hillary-email-... )

Former U.S. Attorney General, John Ashcroft: FBI didn't 'clear' Clinton ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFYQ3Cdp0zQ )

When the Clintons Loved Russia Enough to Sell Them Our Uranium ( http://www.breitbart.com/2016-presidential-race/2016/07/25/flashback-cli... )

Wikileaks: Clinton Foundation Chatter with State Dept on Uranium Deal with Russia ( http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/10/08/wikileaks-putting-on-... )

Russian officials donated $$$ to Clinton Foundation for Russian military research ( http://www.breitbart.com/radio/2016/12/16/schweizer-insecure-left-wants-... )

Cash Flowed to Clinton Foundation Amid Russian Uranium Deal ( https://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/24/us/cash-flowed-to-clinton-foundation-... )

HILLARY CAMPAIGN CHIEF LINKED TO MONEY-LAUNDERING IN RUSSIA ( HTTP://WWW.WND.COM/2016/10/HILLARY-CAMPAIGN-CHIEF-LINKED-TO-MONEY-LAUNDE... )

The largest source of Trump campaign funds is small donors giving under $200 ( http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/donald-trump-self-fund_us_57fd4556e4... )

How mega-donors helped raise $1 billion for Hillary Clinton ( https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/how-mega-donors-helped-raise-1-b... )

Final newspaper endorsement count: Clinton 57, Trump 2 ( http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/presidential-races/304606-final-news... )

Journalists shower Hillary Clinton with campaign cash ( https://www.publicintegrity.org/2016/10/17/20330/journalists-shower-hill... )

Judicial Watch Planning to Sue FBI, NSA, CIA for Flynn Records ( http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/02/16/judicial-watch-planni... )

President Trump Vowed to Investigate Voter Fraud. Then Lawmakers Voted to "Eliminate" Election Commission Charged with Helping States Improve their Voting Systems ( http://time.com/4663250/house-committee-eliminates-election-commission-v... )

California's Recipe for Voter Fraud on a Massive Scale( http://www.breitbart.com/california/2017/01/27/voter-fraud/ )

California Republican Party Official Alleges Voter Fraud In California ( http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2016/11/28/trump-among-those-saying-vot... )

BREAKING: Massive Voter Fraud Discovered In Mailing Ballots In Pennsylvania! See Huge Twist In Results! ( http://www.usapoliticstoday.com/massive-voter-fraud-pennsylvania/ )

"Voting Fraud" revealed during "Recount": Scanners were used to count one vote many times to favor Clinton in Wayne County, a "Sanctuary" county including Detroit and surrounding areas.( http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-12-06/michigan-republicans-file-emerg... )

Illegal Voters Tipping Election Scales ( http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/243947/illegal-voters-tipping-election-s... )

Voter Fraud: We've Got Proof It's Easy ( http://www.nationalreview.com/article/368234/voter-fraud-weve-got-proof-... )

Voter Fraud Is Real. Here's The Proof ( http://thefederalist.com/2016/10/13/voter-fraud-real-heres-proof/ )

Here's Why State Election Officials Think Voter Fraud Is a Serious Problem ( http://dailysignal.com/2017/02/17/heres-why-state-election-officials-thi... )

Documented Voter Fraud in US ( http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/ViewSubCategory.asp?id=2216 )

No, voter fraud isn't a myth: 10 cases where it's all too real ( http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/oct/17/no-voter-fraud-isnt-myth... )

Non-US citizen gets eight years for voter fraud in Texas after "Sucessfully Illegally Voted for at least Five Times" in Dallas county, a "Sanctuary" county( http://www.theblaze.com/news/2017/02/09/non-us-citizen-gets-eight-years-... )

Democratic party operatives tell us how to successfully commit voter fraud on a massive scale ( http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2016/10/james-okeefe-rigging-elections-d... )

Texas Rigged? Reports Of Voting Machines Switching Votes To Hillary In Texas( http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-10-25/texas-rigged-first-reports-voti... )

Voting Machine "Irregularities" Reported in Utah, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, & North Carolina ( http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-11-08/voting-machine-irregularities-r... )

Video: Machine Refuses to Allow Vote For Trump in Pennsylvania ( http://www.infowars.com/video-machine-refuses-to-allow-vote-for-trump-in... )

Electoral fraud ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electoral_fraud )

Voter fraud ( https://ballotpedia.org/Voter_fraud )

Sanctuary Cities Continue to Obstruct Enforcement, Threaten Public Safety( http://cis.org/Sanctuary-Cities-Map )

List of Sanctuary cities( http://www.apsanlaw.com/law-246.List-of-Sanctuary-cities.html )

[Feb 19, 2017] As Democrats stare down eight years of policies being wiped out within months, but those policies did virtually nothing for their electoral success at any level.

Notable quotes:
"... This point has been made before on Obamacare, but the tendency behind it, the tendency to muddle and mask benefits, has become endemic to center-left politics. Either Democrats complicate their initiatives enough to be inscrutable to anyone who doesn't love reading hours of explainers on public policy, or else they don't take credit for the few simple policies they do enact. Let's run through a few examples. ..."
"... missed the point the big winner is FIRE. ACA should have been everyone in medicare, and have medicare run Part B not FIRE. Obamcare is welfare for FIRE, who sabotage it with huge deductibles and raging rises in premium.. ..."
Feb 19, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Peter K. -> Chris G ... , February 18, 2017 at 07:35 AM
via J.W. Mason (lots of F-bombs!):

http://democracyjournal.org/arguments/keep-it-simple-and-take-credit/

Keep It Simple and Take Credit

BY JACK MESERVE
FROM FEBRUARY 3, 2017, 5:42 PM

As Democrats stare down eight years of policies being wiped out within months, it's worth looking at why those policies did virtually nothing for their electoral success at any level. And, in the interest of supporting a united front between liberals and socialists, let me start this off with a rather long quote from Matt Christman of Chapo Trap House, on why Obamacare failed to gain more popularity:

There are parts to it that are unambiguously good - like, Medicaid expansion is good, and why? Because there's no f!@#ing strings attached. You don't have to go to a goddamned website and become a f@!#ing hacker to try to figure out how to pick the right plan, they just tell you "you're covered now." And that's it! That's all it ever should have been and that is why - [Jonathan Chait] is bemoaning why it's a political failure? Because modern neoliberal, left-neoliberal policy is all about making this shit invisible to people so that they don't know what they're getting out of it.

And as Rick Perlstein has talked about a lot, that's one of the reasons that Democrats end up f!@#$ing themselves over. The reason they held Congress for 40 years after enacting Social Security is because Social Security was right in your f!@ing face. They could say to you, "you didn't used to have money when you were old, now you do. Thank Democrats." And they f!@#ing did. Now it's, "you didn't used to be able to log on to a website and negotiate between 15 different providers to pick a platinum or gold or zinc plan and apply a f!@#$ing formula for a subsidy that's gonna change depending on your income so you might end up having to retroactively owe money or have a higher premium." Holy shit, thank you so much.

This point has been made before on Obamacare, but the tendency behind it, the tendency to muddle and mask benefits, has become endemic to center-left politics. Either Democrats complicate their initiatives enough to be inscrutable to anyone who doesn't love reading hours of explainers on public policy, or else they don't take credit for the few simple policies they do enact. Let's run through a few examples.

...

ilsm -> Peter K.... , February 18, 2017 at 12:47 PM
missed the point the big winner is FIRE. ACA should have been everyone in medicare, and have medicare run Part B not FIRE. Obamcare is welfare for FIRE, who sabotage it with huge deductibles and raging rises in premium..

[Feb 12, 2017] It would be an understatement to say that Dems adopted the neoliberal ideology of their opposition

Notable quotes:
"... We're hoping for judges' consciences, and loyalty to country over party, and common sense, to save us. ..."
"... "administration that is unconstrained by conscience and logic", we have had that continuously since 1980. ..."
"... You get worked up over a travel ban but not Obama's US bombing wedding parties. Or taking out 14 non combatants and losing n MV 22 to get a few smart phones. ..."
"... Do you have stock in both refugee referral companies and Lockheed? ..."
"... poor pk has grabbed the alt right's the concession over cognitive bias, false analogy and cherry picked faux facts. ..."
"... Does anyone take this guy seriously anymore? This is Chicken Little, Sky-Is-Falling nonsense from a PhD Nobelist? Certainly the guy has lost his marbles, and someone needs to put him in a padded room. At least be kind, and retire him. ..."
"... Electoral college exists until "they" gut/get rid of states rule on amendments in the US constitution. ..."
"... Why republicans should be focused on voter suppression, if Democrats are working relentlessly to move blue collar workers and lower middle class voters to far right ? ..."
"... 'dollar democracy' is deeper than that. ..."
"... Wrong. Progressive neoliberals helped give us Trump. Nobody forced Hillary to give speeches to Goldman Sachs or to give Bush a blank check for war. ..."
"... Blaming the few who didn't vote Hillary. What about the many who stayed home? You're an example of learned helplessness. Like the wife who won't leave her abusive husband. ..."
"... If Trump got 37% of votes of people with postgraduate degree that's tell you something about Democratic Party. That only can means that Democratic Party smells so badly that most people can not stand it, not matter what is the alternative. As in "you should burn in hell". ..."
"... It's kind of reversal of voting for "lesser evil" on which Bill Clinton counted when he betrayed the working class and lower middle class. Worked OK for a while but then it stopped working as he essentially pushed people into embraces of far right. ..."
"... I doubt that Trump is a political cycle outlier. He is a sign of the crisis of neoliberal political system, which pushes authoritarian figures as "Hail Mary Pass", when Hillarius politicans are proved to be un-electable. ..."
"... And despite his "bastard liberalism" he is the symbol of rejection of liberalism, especially outsourcing/offshoring and neoliberal globalization. Or more correctly his voters are. ..."
"... "America as we know it will soon be gone." Don't you think that much of it is already gone? We did not see ourselves as a nation of cowards years ago, but that's what we now appear to be. ..."
"... "We did not see ourselves as a nation of cowards years ago, but that's what we now appear to be." USAnians have been cowards for generations. The transition from corporatist dyarchy to one-party authoritarianism is and was inevitable. ..."
"... It seems we live in a system where two parties fight to a draw and then volatility in the system acts as a coin toss and we get new leadership. The people line up approximately half and half for the two. ..."
"... Where do you see a draw? The republicans control the house, the senate, the executive branch, the majority of state legislatures, the majority of state governorships, and will soon control the supreme court. ..."
"... The Republicans have embraced the idea that this is a battle, and that their 50% need to win and keep their heels on the neck of the other 50%. The Democrats seem more conflicted about this fight, partly because some of them have bought the neoliberal ideology of their opposition. ..."
"... "some of them have bought the neoliberal ideology of their opposition." i like the understatement. ..."
Feb 12, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
yuan -> DeDude... , February 10, 2017 at 09:49 AM
"The real question is how much support he has a year from now when most of his voters realize that the majority of what he directly or implicitly promised them, turns out to be a lie."


I'm sure that people in Kansas were telling themselves this 7 years ago.

DeDude -> yuan... , February 10, 2017 at 12:52 PM
Yep - and they were right. The democrats lost the next midterm election. The midterm blowback is that of both an energized opposition and of a lot of disappointed followers.
ilsm -> DeDude... , February 10, 2017 at 04:04 PM
If the libruls think Obama's multinational collateral damage from senseless bombing by drone and expensive aircraft is not worth protesting, then rallies and faux moral indignation against a travel ban are incongruous to reason.
sanjait -> Estate Agent - Emily ... , February 10, 2017 at 10:31 AM
"It's not quite that bad."

We can only hope.

But we have an administration that is unconstrained by conscience and logic and a GOP majority in both houses of Congress that shows scant willingness to stand against the administration on anything.

The only remaining check between now and 2018 is the fear Congresspersons might have of losing their seats, and the judiciary.

The former is very weak though, because rapid Trump supporters make up the majority of the GOP voting base, so GOP congressmen are going to stay in line to avoid primary challenges. Their party is almost completely captured by the wingnut wing.

Also, few at-risk GOP Senators are even up for re-election in 2018.

The latter is our only real hope, and even that is tenuous. Judges can be fickle and peculiar, but most GOP judges were selected for their partisan loyalty. Most will go along with almost anything the GOP wants, and as time passes, Trump is going to add more judges, and he will be damn sure to pick ones that go along with anything he wants.

We're hoping for judges' consciences, and loyalty to country over party, and common sense, to save us. But when the GOP picks judges they select against those traits.

ilsm -> sanjait... , February 10, 2017 at 04:08 PM
"administration that is unconstrained by conscience and logic", we have had that continuously since 1980.

You get worked up over a travel ban but not Obama's US bombing wedding parties. Or taking out 14 non combatants and losing n MV 22 to get a few smart phones.

Do you have stock in both refugee referral companies and Lockheed?

ilsm : , February 10, 2017 at 04:09 AM
poor pk has grabbed the alt right's the concession over cognitive bias, false analogy and cherry picked faux facts.
Benedict@large -> ilsm... , February 10, 2017 at 05:04 AM
Does anyone take this guy seriously anymore? This is Chicken Little, Sky-Is-Falling nonsense from a PhD Nobelist? Certainly the guy has lost his marbles, and someone needs to put him in a padded room. At least be kind, and retire him.
RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> Benedict@large... , February 10, 2017 at 05:30 AM
You certainly cannot expect Krugman to criticize the constitutional political system of dollar democracy that gave us a choice between Trump and Hillary through first past the post elections and party caucuses any more than you can expect him to criticize lifetime congressional seats and a SCOTUS unanswerable to the people.

I believe even Krugman will criticize gerrymandering, which is a safe target since it is implemented at the state rather than federal level.

pgl -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 05:59 AM
DeLong is - at least when it comes to the Electoral College. This system is sort of telling the folks in California that they really do not matter.
ilsm -> pgl... , February 10, 2017 at 06:10 AM
Electoral college exists until "they" gut/get rid of states rule on amendments in the US constitution.

Democracy is one thing within toen lesser in states........ the rest is republic the 'burgs' not wanting to be run from Morningside Hts.

RC AKA Darryl, Ron said in reply to pgl... , February 10, 2017 at 06:12 AM
The electoral college although problematic is not the best place to start. Campaign finance, gerrymandering, legislative term limits, and an alternative to first past the post voting are all state to state neutral, allowing a large and powerful electoral consensus to form without undue obstacles except for elite authority itself.

These are all assessable solidarity issues. The fear of reversal for Roe V. Wade makes petition and referendum to overturn SCOTUS decisions more difficult first time around, but not impossible since Citizens United. Liberals on the fence only need consider the polling numbers comparing those two SCOTUS decisions to see that petition and referendum to overturn SCOTUS would not threaten Roe V. Wade, but rather end the threat to Roe V. Wade. OTOH, the electoral college is a state by state issue and small states are not going to give it up. New York and California will need to subdivide into a bunch of small states to ever change that.

The constitutional ratification procedure can be hijacked by a solidarity electoral movement only so long as the solidarity is large and cohesive.

yuan -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 08:39 AM
And, IMO, you are not seeing the forest for the trees. The republican party is laser focused on voter suppression. And they will not waste a crisis or supreme court judge slot.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/politics/ct-north-carolina-voter-id-law-20160902-story.html

"A review of these documents shows that North Carolina GOP leaders launched a meticulous and coordinated effort to deter black voters, who overwhelmingly vote for Democrats."

When the Supreme court becomes un-deadlocked Jim Crow will destroy opposition to Trumpism.

RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> yuan... , February 10, 2017 at 09:27 AM
You are certainly correct in their intent and if the South less Virginia, which was purple enough to go for Hillary in 2016, were the entire country then you would be correct in the impending reality.

The reality is uncertain though because many of the Trump voters were racists and misogynists, but then many of the Trump voters were just reacting to an opportunity to strike back at the corporatist hegemony in control of the political establishment. The corporatist controlled dollar democracy has dominated the conversation about the advantages of trade regardless of trade deficits for over thirty years now. A rebellion is long overdue. The US Constitution provides sufficient political tools to the electorate to stage a revolution using electoral means, but not by just choosing between establishment political parties without providing an electoral agenda of its own along with solidarity in imposing bipartisan anti-incumbency sanctions for failure to perform.

yuan -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 09:42 AM
"The US Constitution provides sufficient political tools to the electorate to stage a revolution using electoral means"

And I see a mostly corrupt legal system that has already proven willing to overturn the will of the people.

sanjait -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 10:39 AM
Great. While Trump tries to tear down democracy, the supposed representatives of "the people" will keep talking about shit like how much they hate NAFTA.
ilsm -> sanjait... , February 10, 2017 at 04:16 PM
I won't type much here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sk3sURDS4IA

The opening rif is cool.

Monster, Steppenwolf

I need to play this once a week!

libezkova said in reply to yuan... , February 10, 2017 at 07:57 PM
"And, IMO, you are not seeing the forest for the trees. The republican party is laser focused on voter suppression."

With all due respect, I do not believe that.

Why republicans should be focused on voter suppression, if Democrats are working relentlessly to move blue collar workers and lower middle class voters to far right ?

ilsm -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 04:13 PM
'dollar democracy' is deeper than that.

it is 99% the system

but you got to do the right system

or the left one

trouble is like tamany

cannot see the system to fix

ken melvin : , February 10, 2017 at 05:22 AM
Paul Krugman didn't give us Trump, the progressives who can't stand dems, demonized Hillary, either didn't vote or voted for Trump gave us Trump. Idee fixe and big picture are not the same.
Peter K. -> ken melvin... , February 10, 2017 at 05:38 AM
Wrong. Progressive neoliberals helped give us Trump. Nobody forced Hillary to give speeches to Goldman Sachs or to give Bush a blank check for war.

"We're re-learning today what we should have learned in the 30s ... economic stagnation breeds reaction and intolerance"

http://stumblingandmumbling.typepad.com/stumbling_and_mumbling/2017/02/lets-not-debate-immigration.html

Blaming the few who didn't vote Hillary. What about the many who stayed home? You're an example of learned helplessness. Like the wife who won't leave her abusive husband.

yuan -> Peter K.... , February 10, 2017 at 08:56 AM
"Wrong. Progressive neoliberals helped give us Trump. Nobody forced Hillary to give speeches to Goldman Sachs or to give Bush a blank check for war."

How many Goldman Sachs banksters does Trump have in his administration? I lost count.

The best predictor of a Trump vote was a tendency towards sexism and racism. And Trump voters were generally well-off middle class whites, not the underclass who either stayed home or predominantly voted for Clinton.

Peter K. -> yuan... , February 10, 2017 at 09:09 AM
"The best predictor of a Trump vote was a tendency towards sexism and racism. And Trump voters were generally well-off middle class whites, not the underclass who either stayed home or predominantly voted for Clinton."

Trump won the uneducated vote. Many of those people ain't middle class.

"How many Goldman Sachs banksters does Trump have in his administration? I lost count."

Yeah they own both parties. Democrats need to be for the people, not corporations. You are pretty naive for being leftwing. Probably you just get off on being argumentative.

yuan -> Peter K.... , February 10, 2017 at 09:38 AM
"Trump won the uneducated vote. Many of those people ain't middle class." I see you are pimping Trump's faux-populist mythology again. Clinton won the majority of votes of those earning less the $50,000 and Trump won the majority of votes for those who earn more than $50,000.

http://www.cnn.com/election/results/exit-polls

Peter K. -> yuan... , February 10, 2017 at 11:55 AM

high school or less [18 percent of total]

Clinton 46 %
Trump 51 %

some college [32% of total]

Clinton 43%
Trump 51%

college graduate [32%]
Clinton 49%
Trump 44%

postgraduate [18%]
Clinton 58%
Trump 37%

yuan -> Peter K.... , February 10, 2017 at 05:49 PM
has it ever occurred to you that older white voters can be middle/upper class without having a college degree?

it's ironic that many of these same people oppose unions, social insurance (e.g. pensions), and free education (GI bill) despite having benefited from these socialist programs.
FYIGM

libezkova said in reply to Peter K.... , February 10, 2017 at 08:05 PM
If Trump got 37% of votes of people with postgraduate degree that's tell you something about Democratic Party. That only can means that Democratic Party smells so badly that most people can not stand it, not matter what is the alternative. As in "you should burn in hell".

It's kind of reversal of voting for "lesser evil" on which Bill Clinton counted when he betrayed the working class and lower middle class. Worked OK for a while but then it stopped working as he essentially pushed people into embraces of far right.

RC AKA Darryl, Ron said in reply to pgl... , February 10, 2017 at 06:16 AM
My wife says Liz Warren will run in 2020 and win. I am hoping that it will be someone off radar now that gets elected as the youngest POTUS in history. We need a sea change with full millennial backing.
Jay -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 06:32 AM
You're wife's prediction for next president will keep DeVos.

"A taxpayer-funded voucher that paid the entire cost of educating a child (not just a partial subsidy) would open a range of opportunities to all children. . . . Fully funded vouchers would relieve parents from the terrible choice of leaving their kids in lousy schools or bankrupting themselves to escape those schools.

the public-versus-private competition misses the central point. The problem is not vouchers; the problem is parental choice. Under current voucher schemes, children who do not use the vouchers are still assigned to public schools based on their zip codes. This means that in the overwhelming majority of cases, a bureaucrat picks the child's school, not a parent. The only way for parents to exercise any choice is to buy a different home-which is exactly how the bidding wars started.

Under a public school voucher program, parents, not bureaucrats, would have the power to pick schools for their children-and to choose which schools would get their children's vouchers."

Remember which side of the debate is pro-choice and which side of the debate is pro teacher's union.

RC AKA Darryl, Ron said in reply to Jay... , February 10, 2017 at 09:38 AM
I am not for either side. My wife's mother was a teacher as was her older sister. I am not sure what she thinks of the teacher's union.

The pedagogical system is so oriented to a system of establishment indoctrination that the average private school is just as bad as the average public school and even the worst public schools are no worse than the worst private schools. Only the best private schools stand out along with a few of the charter schools as better than their public school counterparts and even then not by a great margin. The problem is the pedagogical approach itself. It is also a matter of who taught the teachers? We have developed a system that aspires to mold us all into obedient followers and it works very well. It is also self-replicating.

ilsm -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 04:26 PM
Putting up "competition" against public education which as evolved since the Northwest Ordinance is a crusade for the tea party.

But they would trip WW III, war to keep Russia from breaking up the Frankensteins of East Europe!

The system is: who makes money.

yuan -> Jay... , February 10, 2017 at 10:02 AM
"Remember which side of the debate is pro-choice and which side of the debate is pro teacher's union."

Who needs labor and civil rights when we have capitalist billionaires who will give us "school choice vouchers", "right to work laws", and "deregulation"!

sanjait -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 10:47 AM
Complaining about the electoral college being screwed up is like complaining that human nature is screwed up.

It's true, but almost pointless, because it won't change in the foreseeable future.

libezkova said in reply to RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , February 10, 2017 at 08:11 PM
I doubt that Trump is a political cycle outlier. He is a sign of the crisis of neoliberal political system, which pushes authoritarian figures as "Hail Mary Pass", when Hillarius politicans are proved to be un-electable.

And despite his "bastard liberalism" he is the symbol of rejection of liberalism, especially outsourcing/offshoring and neoliberal globalization. Or more correctly his voters are.

Peter K. -> The People's Pawn... , February 10, 2017 at 06:19 AM
Trump said the Iraq war was a disaster. He bragged about being against the war before it started. He used the Iraq war against Jeb Bush and Hillary as an example of the corrupt elite's incompetence.

This infuriates thoughtless partisans like Krugman to no end.

The appellate court ruled against Trump's Muslim band even more strongly than the lower court judge.

sanjait -> Peter K.... , February 10, 2017 at 10:55 AM
"Trump said the Iraq war was a disaster. He bragged about being against the war before it started."

That is a very sneaky way of talking around the fact that Trump never said anywhere on record before the war that he was against it.

wally : , February 10, 2017 at 06:20 AM
"America as we know it will soon be gone." Don't you think that much of it is already gone? We did not see ourselves as a nation of cowards years ago, but that's what we now appear to be.
yuan -> wally... , February 10, 2017 at 09:13 AM
"We did not see ourselves as a nation of cowards years ago, but that's what we now appear to be." USAnians have been cowards for generations. The transition from corporatist dyarchy to one-party authoritarianism is and was inevitable.
ilsm -> wally... , February 10, 2017 at 04:36 PM
poor pk's [whatever it is] America is not my [or a lot of peoples'] America. America like freedom is a perspective thing!
point : , February 10, 2017 at 06:41 AM
It seems we live in a system where two parties fight to a draw and then volatility in the system acts as a coin toss and we get new leadership. The people line up approximately half and half for the two.

I'm having a hard time understanding why if half support the new leadership established by the operations of the system, that we should worry this a threat to the system itself.

For if that's what we think, it seems we have far bigger problems than simple disagreement to worry about. It seems those among us who think that way should be planning as revolutionaries to change this doomed system that except for luck has not yet careened over the edge into whatever.

yuan -> point... , February 10, 2017 at 09:33 AM
Where do you see a draw? The republicans control the house, the senate, the executive branch, the majority of state legislatures, the majority of state governorships, and will soon control the supreme court.
Julio -> point... , February 10, 2017 at 10:41 AM
The Republicans have embraced the idea that this is a battle, and that their 50% need to win and keep their heels on the neck of the other 50%. The Democrats seem more conflicted about this fight, partly because some of them have bought the neoliberal ideology of their opposition.
yuan -> Julio ... , February 10, 2017 at 12:23 P
"some of them have bought the neoliberal ideology of their opposition." i like the understatement.

[Feb 12, 2017] Democratic Party Sugar High

Feb 12, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Peter K. : February 11, 2017 at 07:05 AM , 2017 at 07:05 AM
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/10/opinion/democratic-party-sugar-high.html

Democratic Party Sugar High

by Timothy Egan

FEB. 10, 2017

These are giddy times for the forces of reason and light. A surge of resistance to a bumbling and unstable president has sent millions of people into the streets, into the faces of politicians, and into bookstores to make best sellers again of authoritarian nightmare stories.

And all of that hasn't changed the fact that Democrats, the opposition party, are more removed from power than at almost any point in history. Republicans control everything in Washington, two-thirds of state legislative chambers and 33 governor's mansions.

Every day brings some fresh affront to decency, some assault on progress, some blow to the truth. The people who run the White House can't spell, can't govern, can't get through a news cycle without insulting an ally or defaming a cherished institution. Republicans just shrug and move on, in lock step with a leader who wants to set the country back a century. From their view, things are going swimmingly.

Outraged about the ban on people from Muslim-majority nations? So what. About half of the nation, and a majority of Republicans, are in favor of it. Upset over the return of Wall Street pirates to power? President Trump's supporters aren't.

Democrats haven't been able to stop a single one of Trump's gallery of ill-qualified, ethically challenged and backward-thinking cabinet appointees. His pick for labor secretary, Andrew Puzder, doesn't believe people should be paid a living wage to stir a milkshake, and he hired an undocumented immigrant to clean his house. He'll fit right in.

Millions of reasonable people are appalled that a madman is in charge of the country. But tell that to Mitch McConnell when he cuts off the right of a fellow senator to speak. Or tell it to Paul Ryan when he can't find his copy of the Constitution he has sworn to uphold. These invertebrate leaders don't care if Trump's residence is a house of lies. They don't care that their president is a sexual predator, or that his family is using the office to enrich themselves. All they care about is the R stitched to his jersey.

When Adlai Stevenson was told that all thinking people were with him in his race for president, he famously responded: "That's not enough. I need a majority."

And so, too, do the Democrats. This week, the powerless party went into their winter cave for an annual retreat - three days of soul-searching and strategizing.

"This is our moment in history," the House minority leader, Nancy Pelosi, told her fellow Ds. "This man in the White House is incoherent, incompetent and dangerous. And we have to protect children and other living things from him."

Feels good, right? Sorry. The Democrats shouldn't mistake a sugar high for nutrition. They're still getting their butts kicked. Being Not Trump gained them only a net of six seats in the House in November's election, and will not be enough to win a majority in 2018.

Reliance on identity politics and media-cushioned affirmation, and a blind spot to the genuine pain of the white working class, is precisely what produced a President Trump. For the next year, Democrats should filter their policy initiatives through the eyes of the person Trump claims to speak for - the forgotten American.

Of course, Trump's phrase was lifted from somewhere else. Franklin Roosevelt first rode to victory in 1932 by urging fellow citizens to put faith in "the forgotten man at the bottom of the economic pyramid."

Roosevelt actually did something for that overlooked American - Social Security, minimum wage, building roads, bridges and dams - and was rewarded with a majority coalition that carried the United States to new heights. Therein lies the way back to power for Democrats.

When Democrats lost the South - for multiple generations, as it turned out - it put them in a deep hole, forcing them to rely on a surge of young and Latino voters to turn the demographic tide, or candidates with broad appeal beyond the party strongholds on the coasts.

President Obama left office with soaring approval numbers and a great legacy. But Democrats also lost 1,034 state and federal offices in his time. Whites are still 70 percent of the vote. If Democrats continue to hemorrhage voters among the working class, they will never see the presidency, or even expect to govern in one house, for a long time.

The way out is not that difficult. Yes, they should engage in hand-to-hand combat in the capital. And certainly, Democrats must turn to the courts when the rule of law is broken. But they have to be for something, as well - a master policy narrative, promoting things that help average Americans. The old Broadway adage was how it will play in Peoria. For Democrats, they should think of Joe Biden's Scranton, Pa., every time they take to a podium.

Julio -> Peter K.... , February 11, 2017 at 03:22 PM
"This man in the White House is incoherent, incompetent and dangerous. And we have to protect children and other living things from him."

Yes, Ms. Pelosi. Unfortunately, we knew this before the election. Which you and your party lost.

Chris G -> Julio ... , February 12, 2017 at 05:52 AM
The follow-up to Pelosi's statement is "No [kidding]. What actions are you taking to protect said children and living things?"

What's the plan for supporting Water Protectors and DAPL protesters? What's the plan for shutting down the Senate after McConnell and co exercise the nuclear option to force a vote on Gorsuch? What's the plan for preventing a vote on Gorsuch? How about CBP personnel who ignore court orders? Not an unreasonable expectation that some will - what to do about them? Expressions of outrage are easily ignored if there's no follow-up action. Perpetrators' lives need to be made difficult.

Julio -> Chris G ... , February 12, 2017 at 09:35 AM
Yep. No specifics. If I hear another vacuous statement about how they will "fight" for children, minorities etc. I will puke.

[Jan 26, 2017] Clinton's bad economics - which is neoliberal economics - was also bad politics.

Jan 26, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Peter K. : January 26, 2017 at 07:28 AM

Sanjait -> Peter K....

Hillary proposed around $1.8 trillion / 10 years in total new spending programs as of early last year, then added more throughout the campaign season.

We've talked about this a number of times before and yet you insist on pretending that infrastructural spending is the only spending because your whole backward ideology is predicated on lying about what Hillary Clinton actually proposed. Seek mental help and stop being such a mendacious twat.

Reply Wednesday, January 25, 2017 at 07:35 PM

Seems like Sanjait is the mendacious twat who gets really angry when proven wrong. He can't argue the facts, like other centrists, so they try to shout you down.

Clinton's bad economics - which is neoliberal economics - is bad politics. If you google Hillary infrastructure spending you get:

https://www.hillaryclinton.com/issues/fixing-americas-infrastructure/

"That's why Hillary Clinton has announced a $275 billion, five-year plan to rebuild our infrastructure-and put Americans to work in the process"

Trump won the election partly on his promises to rebuild the infrastructure bigly. The Senate Democrats have upped the ante with a trillion dollar 10 year plan. That's twice as much as Hillary's plan.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/democrats-set-to-unveil-a-trump-style-infrastructure-plan/2017/01/23/332be2dc-e1b3-11e6-a547-5fb9411d332c_story.html

They know its good politics. The Post article says Trump was thinking a trillion (via tax incentives and private-public partnerships) but his friend is quoted as saying more like $500 billion over ten years - Hillary sized.

Why wasn't Hillary's plan larger? Read Krugman's blog post from yesterday.

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2017/01/25/reagan-trump-and-manufacturing/

Too much fiscal expansion causes the Fed to raise rates and the dollar to appreciate. Did Hillary or her economics surrogates ever explain this? No. Alan Blinder did say that Hillary's fiscal plan wouldn't be large enough to cause the Fed to alter it's rate hike path.

Krugman says fiscal deficits near full employment causes interest rates to rise, like it's an economic law.

He's missing the middle factor, inflation. Fiscal deficits cause inflation which cause the Fed to raise raise rates.

Oh yeah he left out the Fed also.

I repeated the story about Clinton dropping his middle class spending bill in favor of deficit reduction but of course the neoliberals ignore it.

J.W. Mason:

http://jwmason.org/slackwire/what-does-crowding-out-even-mean/

"The master parable for this story is the 1990s, when the Clinton administration came in with big plans for stimulus, only to be slapped down by Alan Greenspan, who warned that any increase in public spending would be offset by a contractionary shift by the federal reserve. But once Clinton made the walk to Canossa and embraced deficit reduction, Greenspan's fed rewarded him with low rates, substituting private investment in equal measure for the foregone public spending. In the current contest, this means: Any increase in federal borrowing will be offset one for one by a fall in private investment - because the Fed will raise rates enough to make it happen."

Sanjait wasn't even aware that the Fed has switched over to the corridor system and will use IOER to help control inflation as it raises rates. He assumed Dani Rodrik was a woman.

And he presumes to go around and call people names about technical issues that can be debated rationally with reference to the facts?

Peter K. -> pgl... , January 26, 2017 at 08:37 AM

... ... ...

https://www.dissentmagazine.org/article/the-legacy-of-the-clinton-bubble

"In 1992, Bill Clinton campaigned on the promise of a short-term stimulus package. But soon after being elected, he met privately with Alan Greenspan, chair of the Federal Reserve Board, and soon accepted what became known as "the financial markets strategy." It was a strategy of placating financial markets. The stimulus package was sacrificed, taxes were raised, spending was cut-all in a futile effort to keep long-term interest rates from rising, and all of which helped the Democrats lose their majority in the House. In fact, the defeat of the stimulus package set off a sharp decline in Clinton's public approval ratings from which his presidency would never recover.

It is easy to forget that Clinton had other alternatives. In 1993, Democrats in Congress were attempting to rein in the Federal Reserve by making it more accountable and transparent. Those efforts were led by the chair of the House Banking Committee, the late Henry B. Gonzalez, who warned that the Fed was creating a giant casino economy, a house of cards, a "monstrous bubble." But such calls for regulation and transparency fell on deaf ears in the Clinton White House and Treasury.

The pattern was set early. The Federal Reserve became increasingly independent of elected branches and more captive of private financial interests. This was seen as "sound economics" and necessary to keep inflation low. Yet the Federal Reserve's autonomy left it a captive of a financial constituency it could no longer control or regulate. Instead, the Fed would rely on one very blunt policy instrument, its authority to set short-term interest rates. As a result of such an active monetary policy, the nation's fiscal policy was constrained, public investment declined, critical infrastructure needs were ignored. Moreover, the Fed's stop-and-go interest-rate policy encouraged the growth of a bubble economy in housing, credit, and currency markets.

Perhaps the biggest of these bubbles was the inflated U.S. dollar, one of several troubling consequences of the Clinton administration's free-trade policies. Although Clinton spoke from the left on trade issues, he governed from the right and ignored the need for any minimum floor on labor, human rights, or environmental standards in trade agreements. After pushing the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) through Congress on the strength of Republican votes, Clinton paved the way for China's entry into the World Trade Organization (WTO) only a few years after China's bloody crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators at Tiananmen Square in Beijing.

During Clinton's eight years in office, the U.S. current account deficit, the broadest measure of trade competitiveness, increased fivefold, from $84 billion to $415 billion. The trade deficit increased most dramatically at the end of the Clinton years. In 1999, the U.S. merchandise trade deficit surpassed $338 billion, a 53 percent increase from $220 billion in 1998.

In early March 2000, Greenspan warned that the current account deficit could only be financed by "ever-larger portfolio and direct foreign investments in the United States, an outcome that cannot continue without limit." The needed capital inflows did continue for nearly eight Bush years. But it was inevitable that the inflows would not be sustained and the dollar would drop. Perhaps the singular success of Bill Clinton was to hand the hot potato to another president before the asset price bubble went bust."

Peter K. -> Peter K.... , January 26, 2017 at 08:39 AM
http://articles.latimes.com/1994-10-30/opinion/op-56424_1_deficit-reduction

"The downward spiral began with Clinton's 1993 abandonment of his original threefold economic program--deficit reduction, economic stimulus and government investment in the nation's physical and human infrastructure. Facing opposition to the last two, Clinton abandoned them and focused on deficit reduction. This painted him into a corner that makes it near impossible to achieve any programmatic progress in this term--and so makes unlikely any hope of a second.

The 1993 story has been cast as the victory of the "deficit hawks," sober economists intent on reducing the gap between federal spending and tax revenues, over the purely political advocates of spending on the investment programs. But the common perception--that the "hawks" represented the responsible economic community, as against the irresponsible politicians--is not true.

Almost every one of the economists in the Clinton Administration had earlier espoused economic policies where stimulus took priority over deficit control. Rightly frightened by the mounting deficits of the Reagan-Bush years, however, by the 1990s they had abandoned their roots for Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan's "responsible" economics--where reduction of the deficit and fear of inflation were the operative factors."

Peter K. -> Peter K.... , January 26, 2017 at 08:44 AM
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/interview/clinton-reich/

"Now, the irony is that Wall Street had never squawked when the first George Bush was spending like gangbusters or when Ronald Reagan was spending like mad. But the thought was that a Democratic administration has to sort of prove its chops, prove itself capable of being much more fiscally responsible than its Republican predecessors because it's a Democratic administration. Well, to us, to me, to those on my side of the debate, that sounded absurd. I mean, yes, let's satisfy the bond traders to some extent. Obviously, we have to get the deficit down somewhat. But let's not sacrifice the Clinton agenda.

....

Reich: The desire to do it all, to have the Clinton priorities and yet satisfy Wall Street led to this extraordinary effort to go line by line by line through the budget and to try to extract enough. And then the question was, "Well, how much is enough?" Do you bring the budget deficit down from five percent of the gross domestic product down to two and a half percent? Which is, basically, cutting the deficit by half. That's what many of us said we're perfectly fine to do.

Others, who were the deficit hawks, said, "No, no, no, no. You actually have to reduce the absolute amount of the deficit by half. That was your campaign promise, that's what we need to do. That's the only way we're going to satisfy Wall Street."

And in the background, Alan Greenspan, as head of the Fed, was whispering in ears -- Lloyd Bentsen's ear, and I think also the President's ear, "If you don't get this budget deficit down, I am not going to cut short-term interest rates. And if I don't cut short-term interest rates, by the time you face the next election in 1996, this economy is not going to be growing buoyantly, and you may not be re-elected." That's called extortion."

Peter K. -> Peter K.... , January 26, 2017 at 08:47 AM
https://www.jacobinmag.com/2011/08/the-waning-of-the-bond-market-vigilantes/

The Waning of the Bond Market Vigilantes

by Peter Frase

It wasn't so long ago that American politicians lived in fear of the bond market. During the Clinton administration, James Carville famously said that "I used to think if there was reincarnation, I wanted to come back as the president or the pope or a .400 baseball hitter. But now I want to come back as the bond market. You can intimidate everybody." That phenomenon gave rise to the concept of the "bond market vigilantes," which Krugman loves to employ.

But today, the bond market vigilantes are not much in evidence. Or rather, they are in evidence, but they suddenly seem unable to have much of an impact on US fiscal policy. Bill Gross, of the ludicrously enormous bond fund PIMCO, is running around screaming about the need for more borrowing and more stimulus. But he has no effect, because it turns out that while bond investors have powerful ways of constraining US government borrowing, they have only indirect and weak means of expanding it.

The United States has a large debt that is routinely rolled over, and it generally runs a budget deficit (Clinton interregnum aside). If bond investors start demanding higher interest rates on government debts, this immediately raises the cost of borrowing for the US government. This, in turn, has knock-on effects throughout the economy, as interest rates rise for everyone and economic activity is thereby constrained. For these reasons, the US government has powerful incentives to avoid doing things that cause the interest rate on treasuries to rise.

Today, however, we find ourselves in the opposite situation: what the bond market seems to want most of all is for the US to borrow more money and stimulate the economy. That's the best explanation for the incredibly low yield on Treasury bonds, which is negative in real terms over some time periods. And yet the US is not borrowing more; instead both parties are demanding insane policies that will cause a second recession, ostensibly based on fallacious notions about the magical effects of budget cutting and a nonsensical conception of the relationship between government and household finances.

The problem here is that the power of the bond market is asymmetrical. When the interest rate on Treasuries go up, this immediately makes all of the government's activities more expensive, and hence forces changes in fiscal planning. But when the interest rate falls to near zero, this only presents an opportunity for expanded borrowing, an opportunity that can easily be thrown away if the political system is too insane and dysfunctional to take advantage of it.

Hence the bond vigilantes sit on the sidelines, impotent and hopeless. Just like the rest of us.

...

[Jan 26, 2017] But Clintons negative effects were also related to the weakening the only countervailing force remaining on the way of the neoliberalism -- trade unionism. So he played the role of subversive agent in the Democratic Party. His betrayal of trade union political interests and his demoralizing role should be underestimated.

Notable quotes:
"... Most of the major changes he mentions are clearly and explicitly the consequence of policy changes, mostly by Republicans, starting with Reagan: deregulation, lower taxes on the wealthy, a lack of antitrust enforcement, and the like. ..."
Jan 26, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
DrDick, January 25, 2017 at 11:07 AM
This is frankly rather disingenuous. Most of the major changes he mentions are clearly and explicitly the consequence of policy changes, mostly by Republicans, starting with Reagan: deregulation, lower taxes on the wealthy, a lack of antitrust enforcement, and the like.

libezkova -> DrDick... January 25, 2017 at 09:29 PM

The first POTUS who cut tax rates was JFK.

sanjait -> DrDick... , January 25, 2017 at 11:20 AM
Read through the link and it's not nearly that simple, especially when you consider the fact that some trends, though plausibly or certainly reinforced through policy, aren't entirely or even primarily caused by policy.
DrDick -> sanjait... , January 25, 2017 at 01:45 PM
I did not say they were the *only* factors, but they are the primary causes. If you look at the timelines and data trends it is pretty clear. Reagan broke the power of the Unions and started deregulation (financialization is a consequence of this), which is the period when the big increases began. Automation plays a secondary role in this. what has happened is that the few industries which are most conducive to automation have remained here (like final assembly of automobiles), while the many, more labor intensive industries (automobile components manufacturing) have been offshored to low wage, not labor or environmental protections countries.
libezkova -> DrDick... , January 25, 2017 at 05:39 PM
Both parties participated in the conversion of the USA into neoliberal society. So it was a bipartisan move.

Clinton did a lot of dirty work in this direction and was later royally remunerated for his betrayal of the former constituency of the Democratic Party and conversion it into "yet another neoliberal party"

Obama actually continued Bush and Clinton work. He talked about 'change we can believe in' while saving Wall street and real estate speculators from jail they fully deserved.

DrDick -> libezkova... , January 25, 2017 at 07:40 PM
Clinton contributed, but the Republicans did all the real heavy lifting. I was in my late 20s and early 30s during Reagan.
libezkova -> DrDick... , January 25, 2017 at 09:25 PM
Very true. Republicans were in the vanguard and did most heavy lifting. That's undeniable.

But Clinton's negative effects were also related to the weakening the only countervailing force remaining on the way of the neoliberalism -- trade unionism. So he played the role of "subversive agent" in the Democratic Party. His betrayal of trade union political interests and his demoralizing role should be underestimated.

[Jan 24, 2017] The soul of the Democrats is right now being decided by a tug-of-war between the Brock camp and the Soros camp

Notable quotes:
"... Of course they want to co-opt it. That's what Obama did in 2008. But I think the Bernie wing has completely lost patience with any such strategy. ..."
Jan 24, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

RC AKA Darryl, Ron : January 24, 2017 at 03:28 AM

, -1
It was a gathering of what Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) railed against during his presidential campaign as "the establishment." The conference, organized by longtime Clinton family operative David Brock, was dominated by Clintonfolk. Jon Cowan, president of the ardently centrist Third Way think tank, was among the most prominent panelists, alongside Hillary Clinton confidante Maya Harris, "Morning Joe" regular Harold Ford and even embattled Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.


But the overwhelming analysis emanating from Brockapalooza was essentially a haute couture Berniecrat gripe: The Democratic Party has been writing off way too much of the electorate by assuming it doesn't need ― or can't win ― the votes of working-class people.


"I think there's a sense that some portion of the Democratic Party shares the blame for what happened," New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman told reporters. "The Democrats acquiesced in many ways to policies making people's lives worse."


He was referring obliquely to the legacy of former President Bill Clinton ― deregulating high finance, gutting welfare, feeding mass incarceration ― which leaders of a party ostensibly devoted to empowering the powerless have been reluctant to acknowledge.


"How many bankers went to jail?" Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), the sole senator to endorse Sanders in the Democratic primary, asked the crowd on Saturday morning in reference to the 2008 financial crisis. "None," he concluded.


There were real disagreements about the right course of action. But speaker after speaker said the party's reliance on demographic trends had made it complacent on matters of economic justice. This had cost Democrats not just the presidency, but governorships and hundreds of state legislature seats across the country.


"The Democratic coalition lives in the economy, all right?" former Bill Clinton campaign manager James Carville told reporters. "The idea that somehow it's only white working-class people that live in an economy blacks, Hispanics, unmarried women, gay people ― they're like everybody else."

Tom aka Rusty said in reply to RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , January 24, 2017 at 04:37 AM
Brockapalooza indeed did happen.

Some of the "autopsy" articles (there are dozens) indicate the soul of the Democrats is right now being decided by a tug-of-war between the Brock camp and the Soros camp.

Not healthy.

New Deal democrat said in reply to RC AKA Darryl, Ron... , January 24, 2017 at 05:06 AM
What I found interesting is that Brockapalooza (great name!) was a gathering of the, ahem, neoliberal wing of the Democratic Party, and what they seem to have concluded is that they desperately need Bernie's supporters, a/k/a the democratic wing of the Democratic Party, and it's enthusiasm.

Of course they want to co-opt it. That's what Obama did in 2008. But I think the Bernie wing has completely lost patience with any such strategy.

libezkova -> New Deal democrat... , January 24, 2017 at 09:05 AM
New Deal democrat,

"Of course they want to co-opt it. That's what Obama did in 2008. But I think the Bernie wing has completely lost patience with any such strategy."

Very true. Cooptation is what they specialize at. Will not work this time, as in "too little too late".

But what is worse is the "neoliberalization" of Democratic Party under Clinton opened the door for far right renaissance.

So neolib Dems created a rather dangerous situation. In a way, Bill Clinton is a godfather of Trump.

RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> New Deal democrat... , January 24, 2017 at 05:38 AM
Just the fact that the DNC donor club has acknowledged the problem and recognized that Bernie was onto the solution is a really big deal. This may be the first time since the party split in 1968 that they have come to grips with working class economics rather than just relying on identity politics and big funding. It's not like they should throw identity politics under the bus. They just need to learn how to play to their entire constituency rather than assume one or both of them has no other choice.

[Jan 22, 2017] Reich 7 Hard Truths for Democrats-The Future Is Bleak Without Radical Reforms naked capitalism

Notable quotes:
"... ballot tampering ..."
"... The Party's top leaders are aging, and the back bench is thin. ..."
"... of running as a Democrat going forward. ..."
Jan 22, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
EndOfTheWorld , January 22, 2017 at 6:06 am

"If the party doesn't understand these seven truths .a third party will emerge to fill the void." That's what will happen, since the so-called "leaders" of the Democratic Party are not going to admit all that stuff, no matter how true it is. They're not very smart.

Carolinian , January 22, 2017 at 8:38 am

Yes it's hard to believe any of this will happen as even now the Dems are circling the wagons with "The Resistance." Also is Sanders even a Democrat? Didn't he go back to being an independent after the convention?

And just a thought on "authoritarian." Our greatest progressive president–Roosevelt–was accused by many at the time of being authoritarian with moves like packing the court. As pointed out yesterday he even created internment camps for Japanese-Americans which would horrify progressives today. It's unfortunate that one must have power–that thing which corrupts–in order to accomplish anything in government so perhaps what ultimately matters is the character of the person wielding that power. Given that it's now the Donald that may seem bleak–remains to be seen–but Reich's distinction between the "good" populists and the the authoritarian ones is a bit artificial and simplistic.

The Repubs have something at stake–their money–in every election and recognize that getting, or suppressing, votes is the key. Perhaps Lambert is right that what really matters is simply getting more people to vote.

Richard Burt , January 22, 2017 at 10:26 am

"Reich's distinction between the "good" populists and the the authoritarian ones is a bit artificial and simplistic." That inputting it mildly. But FDR had a Socialist Party to his Left. And he was elected four times in a row. It wasn't until Reagan that FDR's progressive programs and tax rates began to be dismantled.

lyman alpha blob , January 22, 2017 at 10:30 am

"Didn't he go back to being an independent after the convention?"

Yes he did (very quietly) and he really should start reminding people of that. He kept his word and fulfilled his promises to help Clinton but that ended with the election.

And what does he get in return? Turncoat Dems making sure we all get to continue to pay more money for prescription drugs right out of the gate. If the Dems are going to continue to thwart the people's agenda as they did with his prescription drug amendment, he needs to take the kid gloves off.

Will Bill , January 22, 2017 at 12:08 pm

"Also is Sanders even a Democrat? Didn't he go back to being an independent after the convention?"

So what if he did? Far more important are his ideals, his values, and his vision. They are right in line with the Democratic Party – of 1933, which is where today's corporate party needs to return to get back in power and steer this country in a better direction.

Dirk77 , January 22, 2017 at 8:52 am

If anyone has ever lived in DC, you realize that being well educated doesn't make you intelligent, and being intelligent doesn't make you wise. That said, if in your life you've had success in doing some particular thing, it's hard to change when it no longer works. Even Einstein, smart guy that he was, was an example of that.

If the problems of the party go as deep as Reich says, it would be far more effective for the dems to just fire everyone at the top of their organization and replace them with random people they meet on the street.

collins , January 22, 2017 at 9:50 am

Precisely; Donald Trump was – and is- the Third Party candidate. That's why the Republican establishment tried to destroy him. His ability to break into the GOP through the back door belies the media Imbroglio about his "inexperience".
But love him or hate him – or more prudently, reserve judgment for 4 years – he IS the Third Party candidate. I don't understand why so many academics don't get that. Around 3-4 yrs ago David Brooks warned that the landscape was ripe for a successful 3rd party prez, but he thought it would be a Tech billionaire.
Which was faulty – Silicon Valley had the Democratic establishment already safely tucked away in the Cloud.

Em Tee , January 22, 2017 at 10:24 am

Bernie was the other third party candidate. The difference is that the press could not get a hold on Trump, was transfixed by Trump, his 'trumping'-by-tweeting, and the constant coverage he was able to garner.
On the other hand, the press purposefully shunned and shut the door on Bernie, on his wax from no-percent support to the groundswell in May and June. Remember the empty podium coverage waiting on Trump, and the no coverage of Bernie's barn-burning speech in June. The press was supporting-at any cost- Hillary and the main-line Dem. system. And it WAS rigged.
In Canada, they simply re-branded, to the NDP the New Democratic Party.
Personally I revile two party politics, and I think both parties ignore the new populism, and the rejection of party politics, at their peril.
Perhaps the reason Occupy progressive populism, and the Democrats are foundering is their fundamental tolerance– they simply can't hold their noses anymore to tow the party line at the obvious expense of those who are still being left out and marginalized. The main stream democratic party aids and abets at keeping the status quo going.
Bernie said it best at the hearing the other day: we are NOT a compassionate country.

sid_finster , January 22, 2017 at 12:50 pm

Trump and Bernie were the third party candidates. Bernie was in many ways the preferable of the two, but he was eliminated because he insisted on playing nice and not going for the jugular.

Richard Burt , January 22, 2017 at 10:21 am

You are so right. Sad! Strange to read Reich now after having seen him interviewed at the end of Adam Curtis's documentary The Century of the Self and making similar points. How is going to solve the problem of moneyed elites? Sanders was the third party, the anti-establishment Dem. And look what happened. Corey Booker may be 2020 nominee. Looking very bad for Dems.

NotTimothyGeithner , January 22, 2017 at 12:59 pm

Booker doesn't have a prayer. He's basically the Democratic version of the Republican general the GOP jack booters get hot and heavy over periodically. The nominee in 2020 probably won't be terrible if someone tolerable runs.

The 2008 and 2016 primaries were dominated by Hillary and Obama/Oprah's celebrity profiles. Everyone else has to campaign and interact with people they can't pre-screen. The nostalgia voters won't have a set candidate and will be two years along.

Back in 2008, I went to New Hampshire during the season, and I stood behind Holy Joe Lieberman in a line at Dunkin' Donuts. This is what Booker will encounter on the trail: actual voters. When he is asked about prescription drugs at every stop and has every local teachers union hounding him, he will be dropped by even the media that loves losers such as the Dandy Senator from South Carolina.

Richard , January 22, 2017 at 6:14 am

Clintonites can be made to service Trump administrations washrooms complete with trendy tip hats and stools-

Look for this action from genuine American all for one, and one for all people who are clearly set apart from the Trump hand maidens that wrought present-

Love f l o w s both pos and neg balanced centered action and can be felt in any creature emanating an eagalitarian nature quite foreign to those referrred to as Clinton ite herein

The cherry shaman in all will point the way look for it!!!

fresno dan , January 22, 2017 at 6:37 am

4. The Party's moneyed establishment-big donors, major lobbyists, retired members of Congress who have become bundlers and lobbyists-are part of the problem. Even though many consider themselves "liberal" and don't recoil from an active government, their preferred remedies spare corporations and the wealthiest from making any sacrifices.

The moneyed interests in the Party allowed the deregulation of Wall Street and then encouraged the bailout of the Street. They're barely concerned about the growth of tax havens, inside trading, increasing market power in major industries (pharmaceuticals, telecom, airlines, private health insurers, food processors, finance, even high tech), and widening inequality.

================================================
"They're barely concerned about the growth of tax havens, inside trading, increasing market power in major industries "
au contraire – I would say they are very, VERY concerned and that's the problem.

I used to believe "you can do well and you can do good"
I don't believe it any more.
I suspect a good number of other people don't believe it either

Expat , January 22, 2017 at 6:48 am

I think if the only thing Democrats take away from the election is "OMG an egotistical billionaire with dreadful hair and tacky taste has just become president" then they all deserve to be shipped to Somalia. (In fact, they do all deserve to be shipped to Somalia but that is not the point).

The fact that America and the redneck, ignorant deplorables can elect Trump and consider him as a man of the people, a fighter for the common man, and someone who cares about America first tells you just how detached and elite our elected class has become. It's like hiring John Wayne Gacy to babysit your teenage sons because all the other sitters creep you out!

Democrats are not left-wing. They are, at best, centrist but mainly ego-centrist. Washington has sold out to the rich and powerful, mainly Wall Street and the military-industrial complex. The election of Trump was the desperate cry of America begging for anything other than bent, self-serving officials like Hillary Clinton.

I don't think Trump is the answer but I don't think he will be as bad as we expect. I think Obama discovered that the establishment was more powerful than his desire for change. Trump will face the same forces, though I think it is possible that Trump will try to call their bluff.

But as for the Democratic Party? Fuck 'em. Disband the party, arrest the members, waterboard them, and execute them all for treason. Then move on to the Republicans. When there are no politicians left, start all over. Ah, I can dream, can't I?

BINKY , January 22, 2017 at 12:59 pm

So a suicide pact. Government of, by, and for the people means you play some meager role and are thus a politician.
Maybe step away from the gleeful destruction of what political structure we have and step up to be a solver instead. Oh, but one might have to test their cherished notions in the marketplace, or face up if they fail.
What Reich really needs to be saying is that it is time to take back the reins and clean up the party. We are unlikely to become a multiparty state and the internet surveillance system will track down dissenters. The IWW used to break anti union towns by flooding the jails. Flood the party and you can own it as the nurses union did for Bernie. Or carp on the internet.

ChiGal in Carolina , January 22, 2017 at 7:02 am

So it depends on the framing whether the rallies yesterday go towards #6, a movement, not a party.

Though explicitly embracing an intersectional stance and NOT explicitly Dem or Rep, and while disavowing that it was more anti-Trump than pro rights, justice, health care, and equality, the pussy hats belie that too much of this was aimed at Trump personally and not the Establishment (Empire), whose policies D or R are literally killing us, whether on the battlefield or the home front. And the speakers were weighted toward Establishment Ds.

We can dismiss the outpouring as not connected to an analysis of the underlying reasons for Trump (and initiatives spearheaded by women are usually dismissed).

Or we can embrace it, build on it. I think a lot of unaffiliated voters were amongst the rank and file, so NOT all about Clinton.

Art Eclectic , January 22, 2017 at 11:36 am

I disagree with that to an extent. I marched yesterday and it was clear to everybody that it was way bigger than Trump. The fight is not against Trump, the fight is against everything the Republican Party stands for and Trump is just their current hood ornament. The Women's March was the People's March against all things Republican.

IdahoSpud , January 22, 2017 at 7:06 am

Odd that he never mentions how Dems either stick lefties in a veal pen or drown them in the bathtub

Richard Burt , January 22, 2017 at 10:22 am

Nicely put.

ChiGal in Carolina , January 22, 2017 at 7:10 am

Damn, can't get past moderation. Third, very brief try:

It really depends on the framing whether the rallies yesterday go towards #6, a movement, not a party.

stukuls , January 22, 2017 at 7:21 am

"It will pull people into politics."

Of course third parties pull people into politics. Geez. Just not into your politics.

David S , January 22, 2017 at 7:22 am

If Bernie represents the future of the party then its sad seeing him stump around him Schumer who represents everything that is wrong with it. His best bet is to get away from the Democratic party and run as an independent, but alas the campaign finance problem. By operating inside the party, he'll be nothing more than Charlie Brown trying to kick the football. He'll be the Ron Paul of the Democratic Party.

ChrisAt RU , January 22, 2017 at 8:36 am

~Sigh~ yes, this and the continued presence of Brock, etc etc

There is no #killItWithFire option available for the architects to failed neolib compromise with the Dems.

#FeatureRequest

Richard Burt , January 22, 2017 at 10:23 am

"He'll be the Ron Paul of the Democratic Party." LOL

Em Tee , January 22, 2017 at 10:26 am

I don't think Bernie had a financing problem. The genius is that he did it truly grass-roots. The problem was that the democratic party power structure screwed him, was tone deaf, and lost to Trump, aided and abetted by the press.

HotFlash , January 22, 2017 at 10:26 am

I wonder. Chuck might be hanging around Bernie, not the other way around. Perhaps because he smells a clue - politicians are supposed to be good at that. Or maybe he is Bernie's minder.

DNC Dems may try to marginalize Bernie, but 1.) he's a crafty old guy, 2.) he got a *lot* of votes.

BTW, another article on "what is wrong with the Dems" that doesn't mention superdelegates. Until that is abolished, it's all handwaving.

johnnygl , January 22, 2017 at 11:06 am

That is a good point. Looking at how the battle lines have been drawn on the dnc chair fight, schumer looks like a swing vote who got behind bernie. It was after that when the obama wing of the party resisted and pushed tom perez, who seems to be the biggest opponent of ellison. It really looks like the clintons are vanquished and the obama wing is now the right wing of the dem party.

Carla , January 22, 2017 at 7:24 am

Reich left out a key number: Democrats hold only16 governorships.

"Among the states, there are 33 Republicans, 16 Democrats, and 1 independent that hold the office of governor." Wikipedia.

Here's another error: "Even in its purist form, authoritarian populism doesn't work because it destroys democracy."

Too late. The Democrats have already done that.

Art Eclectic , January 22, 2017 at 11:41 am

Exactly. A smarter Dem party would look at the strategy the Republicans used over the course of 20 years to get where they are today. Abandoning the 50 state strategy was the stupidest thing the Dems ever did, we can see exactly how well that worked by the numbers.

ALL of who believe in equality, civil rights, tolerance, good jobs, health care for all, quality education for all, and an end to lobbyists and financial engineers running the country need to start running for those seats. The only way we take things back is to start local.

PhilK , January 22, 2017 at 7:32 am

Reich should win a Nobel Prize here - he's right up there with Krugman and Obama.

Shorter Reich: The confrontation of the Irresistable Force of populism with the Immovable Object of donor control will result in the Oxymoron of "radical reform".

jo6pac , January 22, 2017 at 8:17 am

LOL Thanks

Amerika had a round of radical reform and little Robert was standing right by big dog when he signed away Amerika to the banksters and jailers.

The demodog party is dead

craazyboy , January 22, 2017 at 9:59 am

I've always been suspicious of Reich, but here I'll give him an "A" for tuning in his snow filled crystal ball and delivering the "soul searching" critique of the Democratic Party many of us have been waiting for and expecting. Pretty much hits the nail on the head, I'd say.

The caveat, of course, is that Reich is not the Commander in Chief of the Democratic party. Towards the end, I think he alludes to that too.

Art Eclectic , January 22, 2017 at 11:44 am

After yesterday, the Democratic party is running to catch up with where their constituency is headed. That March didn't stop at 1 pm Saturday. They'll attempt to get out in front, but Team Bernie will be there ahead of them.

oh , January 22, 2017 at 12:46 pm

One more "populist" article by Robert Reich. I know he's a party hack and will return to the fold once they tell him to sit down. He just provides a false air of "independence" to the bought and sold Democraps. People like him who keep returning to the fold are the very reason that the Dims are in trouble.

jim courtright , January 22, 2017 at 8:04 am

This is a time for historians to review and to revisit the ("Fighting Bob") LaFollette Wisconsin tactics in the early 1900s which came after nearly a generation of political corruption. Progressivism needs to integrate itself in some way into the current populism.

NotTimothyGeithner , January 22, 2017 at 8:15 am

The Clinton wing* of the party needs to be wiped out. Bill ushered in the end of the 70 year Democratic majorities, destroyed the party at the local level, and led to George W. Bush. When the Clintonistas were sidelined, the Democrats won commanding majorities in both houses and the White House in two elections and established a major gotv operation. Obama brings in Rahm Emmanuel and kaboom. Clintonistas were tolerated and look what happened.

*Don't we really mean a few hundred voters connected to the Clinton Administration or campaigns that only hold power over people who are largely voting because of the "D" next to a name?

allan , January 22, 2017 at 8:17 am

To understand how utterly rotten the Democratic elite is,
and unwilling to learn from the past, recent and not so recent, look no further
than the tongue bath given at Betsy DeVos' confirmation hearing to Joe Lieberman,
who is literally a traitor to the party:

Were the moment not so fraught with high political drama, it might have felt like a college reunion. Lieberman was returning to his old stomping grounds on Capitol Hill Tuesday afternoon to offer what bipartisan cover he could for Betsy DeVos, Donald Trump's nominee for education secretary.

"I've known Joe a long time," Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey, a Democrat, told me on Wednesday. "He's a good guy. We served together."

in interviews, several members of the Democratic caucus spoke to their personal affection for Lieberman. "I think Joe Lieberman is a good friend of mine, and I think everybody has the right to say what they think," Virginia Sen. Mark Warner told me.

"Joe's a friend Joe has integrity," Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill said in an interview in the Dirksen Senate Building on Wednesday.

Added Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy, the progressive Democrat who took his seat in 2014: "Lieberman's a great friend, even if we disagree on important issues. He remains a good friend, despite our occasional disagreements."

anonymous in Southfield, MI , January 22, 2017 at 10:00 am

The definition of friendship is stretched very thin when it covers over differences that spread between say the likes of Lieberman and Sanders. Sanders lambasted Betsy DeVos as she deserved to be; the woman lied to the Senate about her vice chairmanship of the Prince foundation-an organization that has devoted million$ to the concept of 'converting' gays, lesbians and bisexuals. She is obviously ashamed of her involvement (fairly recent as IRS documents show her listed in 2014) and for political expediency wants to distance herself from that scene. Competent psychological studies show that such so called conversion efforts always fail resulting in what has to be termed cruelty and deep disillusionment.That Lieberman would rise to such duplicity shows a complete lack of personal integrity. How someone with integrity could have such a 'friend' is to put the word friendship into the realm of meaninglessness.

GWJones , January 22, 2017 at 8:30 am

IdahoSpud, Carla, fresno dan, stukuls and David S are all right on the money!

Reich is a little better than Michael Moore (who yesterday told the demonstrators to put a call to their Congressional and Senate reps right there with brushing their teeth every day), but that's not saying much. I didn't even see the call for voter registration and against Jim Crow election fraud in his essay, just "drawing more people into politics".

Face it, the Democratic Party is irremiably sick to the point that it needs to be put down and a new party formed without the Clintonite DNA.

David , January 22, 2017 at 8:32 am

An almost philosophical question: is there a "Democratic Party" as an institution, separate from the career ambitions of those who have just lost power and what to take it back? I rather suspect not, because that would imply a set of values and beliefs and institutional interests to which individuals would subscribe, and which, under certain circumstances, they might be prepared to put ahead of their personal ambitions.But, at least from across the water, I don't get that impression at all; rather it looks like a group of ambitious and unscrupulous hacks, manipulating the politics of identity to provide themselves with a power base, but now finding that tactic doesn't work any more. If that's so, then the "Democrats" of Reich's article are trapped in a vicious circle: they are only interested in reclaiming personal power, so they have no ideology or beliefs to offer a mass electorate, so they'll never regain power. The best they can hope for is that Trump makes such a mess of things that a desperate nation turns to them for salvation. I suppose anything is possible.

David , January 22, 2017 at 8:42 am

If the foundation of one's strategy is that your adversary fails, then you've already lost. The Dems need an overhaul, good and proper.

Benedict@Large , January 22, 2017 at 9:43 am

Centrism is not an ideology.

Richard Burt , January 22, 2017 at 10:29 am

That is a brilliant comment. My answer to your almost philosophical question is "No." I think that identity politics will persist. Sad!

anonymous in Southfield, MI , January 22, 2017 at 10:34 am

I say that you make a very good point about Democrats not being able to find an ideological map; or rather more exactly: bleating loudly about following the map that the majority of voters want and ask to be followed and then sidestepping constantly to follow another path inimical to what is being proclaimed. Mr. Obama did that with his dance around the subject of universal health care or single payer. We, in the center of the progressive wing, were led to believe he was for it. Then he abandoned us to the expediency of the day by genuflecting low and high before the priesthood of the Health Insurance carriers and pharmaceutical companies. The latter essentially wrote The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act which is tragically misnamed on both halves; it neither protects patients nor allows the vast majority of subscribers to find affordable insurance for themselves and/or their families.

But this is typical of so called centrists such as Obama and the Clintons; they artfully present themselves as being on the right side of the map (protect the environment, keep Social Security and Medicare in place, form an alliance with minorities to advocate for an expansion of rights and liberties, to name some of the more visible tenets) and then betray their so called allies on a regular basis. The self proclaimed Liberals (they can't be by the very definition of the word) get away with it because the specter of a very much more seriously flawed ilk is very real; it seems to be the sworn duty of the Republican party to regularly present the sad evil of a lessor nature. This time around, strategic planning on the part of Trump and total organizational incompetency on the part of Clinton caused her to throw out her chances. Essentially the Democratic party Centrists had their 60 year train of bluffs derailed by a clownish charlatan who delights in performing acts of cruelty and sadism in public.

anonymous in Southfield, MI , January 22, 2017 at 11:46 am

6. The life of the Party-its enthusiasm, passion, youth, principles, and ideals-was elicited by Bernie Sanders's campaign. This isn't to denigrate what Hillary Clinton accomplished-she did, after all, win the popular vote in the presidential election by almost 3 million people.

There's the nub of a major problem; what Hillary Clinton did not accomplish was to win votes that aligned with the map of each state in terms of the Electoral College. The map of Michigan shows what I mean; if the reader were to click on the blue counties in the SE portion of the state and find Washtenaw county one would see Clinton got 68% of the vote there. In a county that has one of the largest Universities (49,000 students and employees) in the country, a premier world class hospital system that has 26,000 employees (some overlap with U of M) and two high schools that in a rarity of aristocratic schooling, sill offer classes in the art of playing in a symphony orchestra-in such a county we find the heart of so called American Liberalism. Blue county indeed, blue stocking would be more like it. And I'm ok with all that.

My point is that HRC appealed (Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein did too, the center of the Michigan Green party is in Ann Arbor, the Washtenaw county seat ) in large part to the people whose demographics are so clearly delineated in that county. By and large (broad brush here) better educated, situated in larger urban centers that are the vibrant hubs of the surrounding areas and most of all, people who are opinion leaders. So in Ann Arbor we have large dollops of college professors, medical and legal professionals, successful business managers and thousands of college students and millennials -many of whom followed the lead of the Democratic party into Hillary's camp after Bernie was forced out by the duplicity of the party leadership. All of whom would have been very deeply engaged in the political swirl of activity.

Wayne County, where Detroit is located, has some different demographics where the support of people of Color would be the major force. Hillary's ability to gain support in the African American community is beyond my comprehension but it does explain what happened in the vote in Detroit.

But the proclivity outside the Large urban centers (Genesee County, Flint, is much like Wayne County demographically) is steep and we see Clinton lost here as elsewhere across the country. Clinton lost out and the much ballyhooed Centrist Democrats lost because they did not speak to the average working class person who lives in dreadful fear of one thing-losing a good paying job and not having food, housing, clothing, transportation and medical care. Fear driven politics, as Bernie Sanders pointed out a kajillion times, is not a pretty picture. People Living in a world of fear is a good thing for Centrists like Clinton and Obama (Trump too) because it makes for a host of malleable minds open to manipulation.

waum , January 22, 2017 at 12:32 pm

I disagree with your analysis. In Michigan, Hillary's margin of loss was smaller than the drop-off in voting in Wayne county (which includes Detroit as well as other urban/suburban cities). What we saw was closer to a withdrawal of consent by the population. The votes are there for the left to win by large margins. But the voters must be asked for their votes through policies that provide tangible benefits. They (we) were already fooled once at the state level and national by a smooth-talking neoliberal Democrat that only offered more of the same once in office. The only thing that can turn this around for the Democrats is a discussion of real benefits and proposals that can only be delivered by government (e.g., single-payer healthcare). I am not sure this is possible in the "blue" states, where the party apparatus is still strong. I think reform in the Democrat party will have to start in the "red" states, where the parties have been decimated by neglect.

Sound of the Suburbs , January 22, 2017 at 8:45 am

Try thinking ..

We know the neoliberal ideology tends to hollow out the middle class.

This is most pronounced in the US where they have embraced the neoliberal ideology the hardest

Let's work out why ..

Everyone has blindly followed Milton Freidman's neo-liberal ideology without thinking .

Trade Fundamentals.

For free trade and an internationally competitive workforce you need a low cost of living so you can pay similar wages to your competitors.

Reference – The Corn Laws and Laissez-Faire
It's all about the cost of living.

The US has probably been the most successful in making its labour force internationally uncompetitive with soaring costs of housing, healthcare and student loan repayments.

These all have to be covered by wages and US businesses are now squealing about the high minimum wage.

US (and all Western) labour has been priced out of global labour markets by the high cost of living.

What did Milton Freidman miss?
The cost of full price services actually has to be paid by businesses in wages.

Milton Freidman took costs off the wealthy and placed them on business.

The West then let massive housing booms roar away raising housing costs through mortgage payments and rent, these costs have to covered by business in wages.

Student loan costs are rising and again these costs have to covered by business in wages.

2017 – Richest 8 people as wealthy as half of world's population

It is important not to tax the wealthy to provide subsidised housing, education and healthcare that result in lower wage costs because?

I don't know, you tell me, is it to maintain ridiculous levels of inequality?

Why does the middle class disappear?

The high costs of living in the West necessitates high wages and everything gets off-shored to maximise profits.

Low paying service sector jobs that cannot be off-shored and highly paid executive and technical jobs are all that's left, the rest was off-shored, it's the way neo-liberalism works

The middle class disappears.

The populists rise and with a neoliberal left they turn right.

Protectionism, it's the only option, we've made such a mess of it all.

Sound of the Suburbs , January 22, 2017 at 8:46 am

With the hollowed out neo-liberal Western economy the Government has to make up the difference between low wages and the high cost of living (tax credits UK).

(The private sector option – Payday loans – only 2000% interest UK)

The high levels of unemployment, need high levels of benefits due to the high cost of living.

Government debt soars and you can't recoup it off the wealthy as it wouldn't be neo-liberal.

Sound of the Suburbs , January 22, 2017 at 8:47 am

Trump may not have to worry about NAFTA as the Mexican's have discovered neo-liberalism.

They are removing the subsidies off petrol and foodstuffs, raising the cost of living and minimum wage.

Mexico's days as a low wage economy are numbered.

If they then have a ridiculous housing boom to inflate housing costs like the West, the cost of living and the minimum wage will soon be the same in Mexico as the West.

The land of cheap labour will be no more.

roadrider , January 22, 2017 at 9:37 am

The Party is on life support.

Can I submit a DNR for them?

edmondo , January 22, 2017 at 9:43 am

After writing this dreck, flash forward to 2019 when Reich endorses Cory Booker for president as "a breathe of fresh air that America needs."

The Democrats are toast.

Pelham , January 22, 2017 at 10:09 am

Would voter registration really do much to remedy the situation with the Electoral College? Wouldn't it be necessary for liberals and progressives en masse to leave their safe spaces in the blue islands and migrate to red or reddish outposts like Ohio, Pennsylvania and Michigan? Or is that too horrible to contemplate?

A few years back a libertarian group decided to target one state where they could move in great numbers to eventually bring about a libertarian paradise. After considerable study and strategizing, they settled on New Hampshire, a state with a small population already somewhat friendly to libertarian ideas that could more easily be tipped to a libertarian agenda. The result, however, was underwhelming.

Reich is right, I believe, is saying the Democratic Party must unreservedly advance a very bold agenda to become a movement. But where is the motivation? As noted, the Iron Law of Institutions applies. The great majority of Dems with an iron grip on the party mechanisms are happy as clams with their wonderful combination of virtue signaling and money raking. In fact, right now with Trump in the White House and Republicans controlling Congress, these Dems are in pretty close to the ideal situation. With minority status, they and their filthy corporate, financial and Big Pharma donors can virtue signal all the more flamboyantly and rest completely assured that they'll never actually have to implement anything. Perfect!

Meanwhile, the rest of us can fritter away our time believing that there is an "inside game" in the party when, in fact, there is no such possibility.

Katharine , January 22, 2017 at 10:12 am

Catullus 76?! I don't think so, Lambert. I know my Latin is extremely rusty, but I see nothing there that could lead to that translation. As for what I do see, this is a family blog.

But now I really wish you could come up with the source of what you quoted.

craazyman , January 22, 2017 at 11:12 am

it's the 15th and 16th lines. Google it!

Oy vey already . . . :-) worn down from the march?

Step up yer game Katharine, are you tired?
(that's a Catullus-like line, here's another . . .)
What heavy signs and roars exhausted you,
(and another . . .)
When, with that great sexist Queen, Madonna
You hurled curses that would make a whore flinch

haha ahhahahahahha ahahahahha. I have one more cupcake to eat today!

Katharine , January 22, 2017 at 11:36 am

"it's the 15th and 16th lines" of a fourteen-line poem.

This is the first I heard cupcakes could make you see double–and vertically at that! Be careful you don't fall downstairs.

craazyman , January 22, 2017 at 11:44 am

this is what I get Googling. It in fact is the 15th and 16th lines! no kidding . . . also it's not at all a porno piece (not that he wasn't capable of that), but if you read the English translation it's very very spiritual.

Carmen 76 (in Latin by Catullus) Listen to 76 in Latin
<>

Available in Latin, Brazilian Port., Chinese, Croatian, Dutch, English, Estonian, Finnish, French, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Rioplatense, Scanned, and Vercellese. Compare two languages here. Listen to this text here.

Siqua recordanti benefacta priors voluptas
est homini, cum se cogitat esse pium,
nec sanctum violasse fidem, nec foedere nullo
divum ad fallendos numine abusum homines,
multa parata manent in longa aetate, Catulle,
ex hoc ingrato gaudia amore tibi.
Nam quaecumque homines bene cuiquam aut dicere possunt
aut facere, haec a te dictaque factaque sunt.
Omnia quae ingratae perierunt credita menti.
Quare iam te cur amplius excrucies?
Quin tu animo offirmas atque istinc te ipse reducis,
et dis invitis desinis esse miser?
Difficile est longum subito deponere amorem,
difficile est, verum hoc qualubet eficias:
una salus haec est, hoc est tibi pervincendum,
hoc facias, sive id non pote sive pote.
O di, si vestrum est misereri, aut si quibus umquam
extremam iam ipsa in morte tulistis opem,
me miserum aspicite et, si vitam puriter egi,
eripite hanc pestem perniciemque mihi,
quae mihi subrepens imos ut torpor in artus
expulit ex omni pectore laetitias.
Non iam illud quaero, contra me ut diligat illa,
aut, quod non potis est, esse pudica velit:
ipse valere opto et taetrum hunc deponere morbum.
O di, redite mi hoc pro pietate mea.

Katharine , January 22, 2017 at 12:21 pm

Many thank yous! My copy was apparently produced by one of those dratted editors who think they know a better organization, and his 76 starts and ends, "Paedicabo ego vos et irrumabo," which the notes quaintly explain as "colloquial expressions of no particular force." You can see why I was at sea!

Now I'm going to have to find a source with conventional order and annotate this book so I'm not cast adrift again.

NotTimothyGeithner , January 22, 2017 at 1:09 pm

http://www.vroma.org/~hwalker/VRomaCatullus/076.html

It looks reasonable, but I can't be sure anymore without practice.

Pespi , January 22, 2017 at 10:19 am

http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674064300
FDR had to work to purge the Democratic party to change it from a half reactionary planters party into a progressive party. The Sanders rump will have to do the same, the leadership needs to be torn to shreds, neolibs and republicans in sheeps clothing like Tim Kaine need to be flushed down massive toilets. Or the party is dead, like the British Labour party

Richard Burt , January 22, 2017 at 10:31 am

Thank you for the link. I had never known about the purge. I will check out the book.

Carolinian , January 22, 2017 at 12:58 pm

From the link–perhaps why you haven't heard of it.

the purge failed, at great political cost to the president

Since I grew up around here I'm not sure when the South has ever been purged of conservatives. Now days however they are more interested in being toadies to big business than in getting out the fire hoses. It took other presidents to moderate the race problem.

Em Tee , January 22, 2017 at 10:36 am

Maybe a re-brand, led by Bernie, with a very simple few point platform, and then recruiting candidates at local, county, state and national level to pledge to tow the line (Think Tea Party or Occupy Wall Street becomes Occupy Elected Positions (for real small D democratic reform.)
I'm OK with America first- I'd love to occupy fewer nations in the Mideast, stop killing brown folks, park the drone fleet, have health CARE (not insurance) for all where all pay in and all can benefit, lower-carbon renewable energy, income tax reform, re-instating the draft as national service, and converting the military back to a department of defense, amongst other bigger ideas.
I think 'we' have about 14 months to get it together and going.

Pespi , January 22, 2017 at 11:20 am

And I think that's a message that absolutely resonantes. I can talk to old folks who've been indoctrinated by fox news and younger people who just haven't read anything and so believe in alt right foolishness, and we can all agree on basic principles. People need decent food, housing, good education for their children, and jobs they can do with dignity.

What is the current democratic party offering to meet that criteria? If you're so poor you can't afford to drop a penny in a crack in the sidewalk you'll be put on an (X)year wait list for subsidized housing? If you're poor and can't find a job we can put you on the shadow welfare system, disability. But if you find a job, you have to pay us back. You can have a pittance in food stamps if you've got no bread. As for the jobs, that's a big middle finger, go take a 4.5 hour round trip bus ride to work in amazon warehouse, loser. I have friends who work in the social services and as they report it, things are grim.

It's not a winning program, it's not an adequate program, it's basically a social safety net tuned to be as painful and minimal as possible while still meeting some definitional criteria.

Most people would also like to stop destroying random countries for the profit of about 18 people.

John Wright , January 22, 2017 at 11:38 am

Tearing the leadership to shreds appears to be the only solution, but is it even possible today, given that FDR had a massive and immediate economic crisis to force the change?

When anyone casts about for "Progressive"(trademarked, Democratic party) Democrats, the same few names come up: Elizabeth Warren, Sherrod Brown, who in their support of H Clinton and Obama's policies look more establishment than progressive.

My concern is the only lesson the current crop of Democrats will learn from the shutting down of the Clinton Foundation is that their "personal wealth opportunity window" is closing as their power to deliver the goods to the elite is quite weakened.

One can visualize them doubling down to become even more neolib than before while giving Obama like fiery speeches to their supporters.

The Democrats have no bench depth. They don't have a second team ready to play a different game.

Pespi , January 22, 2017 at 11:43 am

And the people with experience organizing leftist movements are not near public office. We're probably closer to a panic of 1873 than the great depression, in those terms. , but that helped build the left and labor coalitions that were able to make America semi civilized during FDR's time

johnnygl , January 22, 2017 at 12:09 pm

Nice, now we have an instruction manual.

Today's dem party planter class still likes the sharecropper system of labor relations. It's just been repacked as the gig economy or tracked relentlessly like amazon's warehouse workers.

Anonymous , January 22, 2017 at 10:29 am

Regardless of the issues and frailty of the Democratic party what keeps me up at night is realizing that the very process of democracy is at great risk. The aggressive free press/media that would need to fight for the truth has been whittled away over the years and fears their corporate masters. Now we have a President and Press Secretary who call every fact that goes against their intentions 'fake news' and from what I can tell their supporters simply believe them. Years of a weak press and unchallenged Fox News and talk radio have set the stage for this. The blatant lies about the numbers in attendance for the inauguration told by Trump and his Press Secretary and the refusal of the later to take any questions, sets the stage for a leader who will do and say anything and dismiss any facts or contrary opinions as invalid and 'fake'. With a President enamored with Oligarchy who has no concern for ethics or earned respect and Republicans having dominance in Congress (and the usual love for power at any cost) how is actual democracy going to function. Are there actually any remaining checks and balances?

Lambert Strether Post author , January 22, 2017 at 10:57 am

Let me terrify you some more. Half of Clinton supporters (per YouGov poll, link on request) believe that the Russians were responsible for ballot tampering in 2016, for which there's no evidence at all. And all it took was a few months of propaganda. That epistemic closure on the liberal side is as readily produced as it has been on the conservative side is what keeps me up at night. Why, I'm so old I remember when "progressives" (whoever, in retrospect, they were) called themselves "the reality-based community."

Pespi , January 22, 2017 at 11:29 am

Our 'centrist' mainstream media has always happily lied in service of war and fear, but the shift to fox news stylehysteria based on nothing, nothing at all, is shameful and might just kill it. Or maybe not, maybe it's good for ratings

johnnygl , January 22, 2017 at 12:43 pm

Hold on now, let's look at the positives

1) corp media credibilty at record lows.
2) republicans i've met don't like sanders, but often respect him and find him honest.
3) republicans defending wikileaks and calling intel agencies filthy liars.

All these things make the next war a MUCH harder sell!!!

HotFlash , January 22, 2017 at 10:32 am

The Party's top leaders are aging, and the back bench is thin.

This is a very good thing.

pespi , January 22, 2017 at 10:43 am

There are a lot of young, charged up young lions and lionnesses ready to tear the democratic party to shreds and build a peoples party. This big march is a demonstration that the country doesn't want the explicit rule of oligarchy. It's up to us (cliche) to actually organize, actually support real left candidates for public office, from the city council of the smallest town all the way to the senate.

Megacorps need to be afraid, they need to put 100% of their money in the republican party, because some ferocious democrats are going to grab whatever's left over in the dirty money jar and spend it to chop their legs out.

Gaylord , January 22, 2017 at 10:33 am

Alt Golden Rule: money determines policy. Unless Citizens United is reversed and elections become a public service as intended, there will be no substantial change for the public's benefit. With Republicans in control of Congress, this constitutional crisis won't be resolved. Due to human shortsighted folly, the Revolution belongs to Nature.

Eclair , January 22, 2017 at 10:37 am

My in-laws live in south-western New York and north-western Pennsylvania, basically in the same place that their Swedish and German ancestors settled in the mid-1800's. Our cousin still farms the same acres that his family purchased in 1863. My brother-in-law works for the county, mending roads in summer, snow-plowing through the nights of 'lake-effect' snow in winter. They both voted for Trump.

When I talked to my brother-in-law, back last May, he told me he was making the same amount of money his Dad (a union trucker) had made, just before his retirement. He and his county co-workers have been squeezed for the last decade; 'austerity' has resulted in them doing more work with fewer people. He now rides alone, without a 'wingman', during the long dark nights of plowing on icy county roads. He has seen no help, no sympathy even, from the Democrats. He liked what he had heard about Bernie Sanders, but, by his own admission, didn't know that much about him (thank you CNN for bloviating about Trump, 24/7). He felt that Trump was listening.

Our cousin, the farmer, serves as an elected supervisor for his township. He, like many farmers, is deeply conservative and a hereditary Republican. Last weekend, on our usual Sunday night phone conversation, he expressed his horror that the county commissioners had paid $60,000 to hire a lobbyist to represent their county (not a wealthy one) at the state capitol. His comment: isn't this what we elect our state legislator to do? He then went on to talk about the big topic of the day in the township, the spraying of township roads (all dirt) with saline solution to keep the dust down in summer. Turns out the 'saline solution' is waste fracking fluid, water combined with unknown chemicals. People living along the treated roads have been complaining that they don't want this chemically-laced water sprayed on their doorsteps and our cousin agrees with them. If they don't want it, don't do it.

I have always considered myself a Democrat; but I find myself in agreement on so many points with my in-laws who voted for Trump. A society has to give more respect, monetary as well as moral, to the workers who keep our roads repaired and free of snow; they perform a social good that keeps our economy humming. You can't keep on squeezing them and then recoil in horror when they vote for someone who says he feels their pain.

Our cousin is a family farmer, he conserves the land in the best possible way; he provides local food; veggies, fruits, eggs and meat. He is concerned about soil and water, the basics of life. He is trying to compete with corporate agri-businesses. He wants elected officials to do their job and represent their constituents. He has seen no help from the Democrats but, frankly, is not particularly sanguine about Trump.

And then, at dinner last week, with a group of friends, most of whom are mid-Western conservatives, one of the women, usually quiet, started talking about the Ox-Fam report and how terrible it was that only a few billionaires had as much money as the poorest half of the population. Another friend, also conservative, countered with the usual, I suppose you want everyone to make $65,000 a year, but she was quickly silenced by the others who took the position that no one 'needs' compensation of $18 million.

So, the fractures are appearing, the narrative of the 1% is horrifying even the free-market conservatives. We're all getting tossed about in the big caldera formed by the disappearing legitimacy of the governing classes. If we can ignore the old divisive labels of republican, democrat, liberal, conservative, right, left, and begin to coalesce around a few major agreements; healthy communities with resources for people to have adequate food, shelter, clothing and education and satisfying work; clean air and water and productive soils that provide local food . we have the opportunity to form a new political party. Or, maybe a couple of parties.

But, reform the Democratic party? From what I have seen of our local establishment Dems, they are more concerned with holding on to their pitiful positions of power than they are with crafting a Sanders-like platform. They can no more envision crossing lines and allying with disaffected Republicans than they can see themselves shape-shifting.

Light a Candle , January 22, 2017 at 11:22 am

Thanks for taking the time to post your really thoughtful comment.

I think in this American election, especially with the Democratic primary, a lot of progressive voters (not just in the States) woke up to what was really going on. That the DNC was deeply corrupt and that democracy is only a very thin facade.

craazyman , January 22, 2017 at 11:51 am

very interesting and thoughtful, there's reality there.

Annotherone , January 22, 2017 at 12:30 pm

Thank you for this recounting of your, and your family's, experiences. I found it helpful – and oddly reassuring.

MB , January 22, 2017 at 10:43 am

Half the country, well closet to 2/3 on electoral basis , and thats what counts, voted for someone like trump over clinton. The democrats and media is still in denial over WHY.

So nothing will change.

Whining like petchulant children.
Liberalism..too far..

PalmettoFrond , January 22, 2017 at 11:27 am

and unpresidented for good measure

Orwell , January 22, 2017 at 11:14 am

The nation was not born without great pain, and what will emerge from its remnants over the next century will resemble what we know no more than the infant U.S. in its day resembled the British Empire. Those who sit and wait for reform of irrelevant institutions (let's start with our "three branches") will still be waiting in ten years. Their ship has sailed, with or without them. Whether for better or for worse remains a destiny to be found out for, and by, every individual.

casino implosion , January 22, 2017 at 11:16 am

Lambert nails it in the intro. Quite a few of us Bernie Bros, like me, happily voted for Trump. It was worth every minute of his doubtless corrupt and incompetent reign to see the vile Clinton machine go down like a flaming Zeppelin. From the ruins will emerge a new Democratic Party. once the OWS kids are all out of grad school and ready to take charge of their new world.

FluffytheObeseCat , January 22, 2017 at 1:05 pm

The OWS "kids" will be too broke and indebted for anything but obedience to their employer/master once they are out of grad school.

John , January 22, 2017 at 12:16 pm

Debbie Wasserman-Schultz standing next to Kamala Harris on the podium at yesterday's march does not bode well for the future of the Clinton gutted and failing Democratic party. She didn't get to speak but she had slithered her way on the stage. The Democratic party will have to be pried out of their cold dead hands or abandoned.

Sam Adams , January 22, 2017 at 12:31 pm

Democrats will change when the rice bowls are empty, no sooner.

Norb , January 22, 2017 at 12:36 pm

For those well versed in political science, when does political theatre evolve into a genuine political action-successful or not? In America, there is an atmosphere of unreality to most political protest. A sense that everyone is playing their particular part in a scripted drama. The desire for self preservation steers dissenters into embracing these scripted roles. Marching in "designated protest areas" and feeling the satisfaction of being arrested for the "cause" have proven ineffectual and can be seen as actually counterproductive, as the fake moral courage acquired by these actions are often used as a cudgel to beat down those who see this type of effort as pointless. These efforts only use display to challenge power, while leaving the underlying structure and ideology intact.

A new manifesto must be written and circulated for the current age, allowing individuals to subscribe to stated goals or not. Reich's 7 points elude to this idea of proclamation, but come off instead as a hapless plea. Those trying to resist the status quo are hopelessly stuck in trying to change the minds of the oppressors instead of rallying the oppressed to a new vision. Inequality and loss of opportunity must be addressed and those in power must be held to proclaiming their stand on the issue. Currently, they are allowed to lie or just not answer the question. This also explains much about the current Russia mania. The failures of capitalism must be obfuscated and alternatives quashed at all costs- period. For what does Russia stand for if not an alternative to capitalism. The anti-socialism and anti-communism conditioning will enter overdrive.

Taking land and occupying it either directly or indirectly has always been the way to forge human societies or pull them apart. In the larger sense, finding ways to take and hold ground for use to a particular end is the foundation of power. Labor has been made passive in America. Labor not exercising its right to strike and boycott is powerless in the face of owners overwhelming use of force and violence. Compromise positions don't work as proven out by our current situation. Fake opposition and desperately hanging onto utopian notions of a "fair and equal" capitalism, only allow the status quo to remain so.

It seems capitalist evolution has a good chance in leading to a delusional authoritarian dystopia. A world in which everything is turned into a commodity worthy of exchange for profit. The needs of the time have so far outrun the political process that some drastic event seems the only way of breaking the stalemate.

Kpl , January 22, 2017 at 12:57 pm

My dear Bob, why talk of popular vote. Why not talk of counties won? You will understand that Trump won hands down.

Kpl , January 22, 2017 at 12:57 pm

My dear Bob, why talk of popular vote. Why not talk of counties won? You will understand that Trump won hands down.

Marsh Hen , January 22, 2017 at 1:44 pm

really? I'd heard he was short handed.

Lambert Strether Post author , January 22, 2017 at 2:17 pm

> why talk of popular vote. Why not talk of counties won?

Because talking about the popular vote is kinda like talking about yardage gained instead of touchdowns scored?

mb , January 22, 2017 at 12:59 pm

Democrats and protestors in pussy hats, dont realize that the half of country that voted for Trump, hasnt begin to get aroused and angry yet. They are the half that pays for 90% of taxes, and they also have guns, which the liberals dont.

Outis Philalithopoulos , January 22, 2017 at 1:27 pm

There are plenty of rich Democrats, some of whom pay taxes. Is your "90%" figure an estimate, or do you have a source for it?

Mb , January 22, 2017 at 2:00 pm

Bottom 50% pay 2.75% of taxes. Most of democrats base . This is at heart of problem

Outis Philalithopoulos , January 22, 2017 at 2:46 pm

Many Democrats disparaged poor Republican voters over the recent election cycle and you respond by disparaging the Democratic base as predominantly poor? Do you think this is a good strategy?

Lambert Strether Post author , January 22, 2017 at 2:07 pm

They pay 90% of the taxes? Link, please

Norm , January 22, 2017 at 1:21 pm

The current dregs that make up the Democratic party are people who have neither ideals nor courage. That's why Bernie looked so good compared to them, but when push came to shove, Bernie's guts and idealism went AWOL. None of these people will ever be transformed or transform themselves into something other than loathsome non-entities. The same is true of the Republican party, but while it is much hated by the public, the same public keeps them in power because they appear less loathsome than the Democrats. But any notion that the Republican establishment had a lock on all those people who vote for them was torn to shreds by Trump, and to a lesser extent, by his fellow non-establishment-sanctioned candidate Cruz.

The Democrats will not fix themselves. Possibly the remains of the party apparatus will be taken over, Trump style, by some capable demagogue who can fire up the voters. We can hope that whoever this may be it will be an improvement over our current prospects. A slim hope indeed, but despair is lousy option too,

Lambert Strether Post author , January 22, 2017 at 2:20 pm

Oh, bullshit. As we've said over and over, Sanders did exactly what he promised he would do. If you didn't read the packaging before buying the product, that's on you. And if you thought you were getting a savior instead of the best alternative, that's on you too. I'm sick of the whinging on this, not only because it's untrue, but because its disempowering.

John k , January 22, 2017 at 3:18 pm

I was pretty disappointed at the extent to which he campaigned for her, especially as Dnc leaks emerged, but I'm over it. He's clearly critically needed now to push progressive agenda forward.

I do wish he would speak mor for single payer and less for Obamacare as reps struggle mightily for a way to repeal the latter without angering the part of their base that has no alternative, there may be a real opening for something better how about this compromise; the group with greatest need is elderly under 65, maybe drop age to 55, get nose further under tent.
And non health corps should support, reduces health care costs to corps that do provide coverage, plus covering sickest workers cuts overall costs of covering a work force so encourages corps that don't to begin covering workers this last bit might mollify insurance a little, maybe give extra tax break to corps that cover. Some cuts to corp taxes better than others
And a 50-year old will see a benefit that kicks in pretty soon, he'll like the change even though it doesn't yet affect him. Trump demographics

How about a list of the top 100 opportunities for progressive candidates, whether the hopefully vulnerable neolib opponent is dem or rep?

Mark K , January 22, 2017 at 1:21 pm

To my mind, Reich's #4 doesn't go far enough. If the Democrats want to get serious about radical reform, they need to completely forswear the cultivation of "major donors," and rely on small donations. Sanders' campaign showed it can be done; there is no reason it should not be a sine qua non of running as a Democrat going forward.

Lambert Strether Post author , January 22, 2017 at 2:23 pm

I agree completely. Of course, that would make it harder for lizards like Brock to sun themselves as shindigs for donors in Florida, but maybe Brock would consider taking one for the team.

Heliopause , January 22, 2017 at 1:29 pm

Many good points but I would say #5 is the most important. Instead what I'm getting from major media & many Dems is the same garbage they've been giving us all along. Be nice if they were actually FOR something.

skippy , January 22, 2017 at 2:03 pm

Trump or Hillary? Wrong question. Rather, we need to realize that in so far as it is the choice the leaders propose, it is a trap, which now we cannot escape but from which we can take instruction for the future. In the liberal culture in which we have all been educated-Republicans or Democrats–we are used to looking for saviors from above. We attach ourselves to the powerful. We look upward for emancipation, but radical change and democratization come from below. That's where the hardness is, but that's what scares us. We are soft because we don't know our own strength, and as long as we don't know it, we are subjects–not citizens.

We should see in both the Trump and the Sanders partisan defections from the mainstream parties the glimmer of a potential-in fact, a necessity–of organizing a party of the people. We could even call it Party of the Basket of Deplorables, for if we exclude the "messy masses" (the term Marx and Engels used, to mock the contempt in which they were held by the arrogant elite), we admit that democracy hasn't a prayer. They are "messed up," but are they to blame, who have ceased to matter, or even exist, on the front of the class war that has been launched against democracy-that is, against us all?

The color line must be erased. That is an imperative for unity. In America, racism is the endemic, the recurring plague. It is the root of our political disunity. So that is the first task: educate it out of existence. Engels, who shared his life with Mary Burns, Irish Republican radical, well understood the racism against the Irish pervading the English working class. This was no mere psychological disorder. It arose because the manufacturers of the Midlands imported Irish labor as scabs to break strikes. Nevertheless he saw in the English working class the strength required for a social revolution:

"England exhibits the noteworthy fact that the lower a class stands in society and the more 'uneducated' it is in the usual sense of the word, the closer is its relation to progress and the greater is its future." – snip

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/19431

Lambert Strether Post author , January 22, 2017 at 2:27 pm

> Mary Burns, Irish Republican radical

I didn't know that. Got a link?

Persona au gratin , January 22, 2017 at 3:07 pm

How are British/Irish conflicts even remotely racist? I appreciate the mutual hostility, but how could they even tell each other apart, other than relatively minor speech patterns and social habits? That's hardly racism. Your larger point is well taken, but race and class issues in the US are a bit more entrenched and complicated than your analogy might suggest. By design, I think.

Outis Philalithopoulos , January 22, 2017 at 3:15 pm

The "relatively minor speech patterns" would have entirely sufficed to make the distinction. There are parts of the world where people from towns only a few miles apart can be distinguished through fairly minor intonational differences. See also the history of the word "shibboleth."

David , January 22, 2017 at 3:51 pm

Indeed, there's little direct antagonism between the English and the Irish today and hasn't been for a long time. By contrast, the "racism" discourse in the US seems to persist because it serves the political interests of certain groups. Most of the rest of the world has gone beyond this way of thinking and I'm always surprised the US is so far behind.

TedWa , January 22, 2017 at 2:13 pm

The main street media has us in a vice grip where they say they can not properly cover more than 2 parties. (!!??) This 2 party system is bursting at the seams where every election is a tie or hairsbreadth away from a tie. As long as we keep electing the same people, the democrats are going nowhere, and their neolib philosophy will hang on to the every end – because it pays. They don't care that they're going to hell.

Jess , January 22, 2017 at 2:31 pm

"Democrats have to stop squabbling and understand the dire future ahead of us."

Good fucking luck with that.

Jess , January 22, 2017 at 2:34 pm

"The Party's moneyed establishment-big donors, major lobbyists, retired members of Congress who have become bundlers and lobbyists-are part of the problem."

No, they are the core of the problem.

different clue , January 22, 2017 at 3:27 pm

Well . . . the millions of eager members of the Klinton Koolaid Kult are also a problem. They will never ever vote for a Sanders figure. Never ever. They will nourish their lust for vengeance against the Sanders primary voters and workers for decades to come.

Just go read a blog findable under the words Riverdaughter The Confluence and read the comments and you will see what I mean. Put your nose up real close to the screen so you can smelllll the Klintonism.

blucollarAl , January 22, 2017 at 3:24 pm

In June, 1858, in one of the great speeches in the history of our country and our politics, Lincoln declared, quoting the New Testament, and in the teeth of the undeniable and unresolvable antagonism between pro and anti-slavery citizens, that "A house divided against itself cannot stand."

Lincoln's hope was that this country would not "dissolve". But at the same time he foresaw the inevitably of civil war as the only realistic albeit tragic way in which an America divided on grounds as fundamental as slavery for some versus (political) freedom for all, could resolve its "crisis" and "cease to be divided".

For Lincoln there was no other alternative. There are many times when inhabitants of the "house" disagree. Such is to be expected and disagreements are normally resolved sooner or later. The house endures. But there are those other (rare) times when "agitation has not only not ceased, but has constantly augmented". A "crisis" is reached, and eventually the nation "will become all one thing or all the other." Civil war cruelly declares a victor and a loser.

There was no way to compromise. The deepest narratives by which each side, pro-slavery and pro-"freedom" (Lincoln's word), understood the meaning of the American Republic, the great Enlightenment-inspired experiment in representative democratic government, and ultimately what it means to live in community, organize ourselves politically, socially, economically, and what counts to being a human person, were mutually exclusive. How do you "negotiate" away this conflict? How do you dialectically transcend it? Either the laborer in our cotton fields and plantation households is a human person or not. When the organization of society depends on how we answer explicitly in argument and slogan or implicitly in our unquestioned assumptions, questions about the origins and purposes of life itself, war could only appear to Lincoln as inevitable, even if he refused at this point (1858) to come right out and say it.

A question for us to think about: When, since the time of Lincoln, slavery, and the Civil War, has America been as fundamentally divided as it is now, today, 2017? When have the basic stories that we tell ourselves and that we have assimilated into our habits of head and heart, been more deeply and irreconcilably opposed? Where and what is the dialectical resolution between coastal cosmopolitans chasing a "good life" understood as an ever expanding, protected, and affirmed "market" for individual choice and self- inventing "lifestyles", and the flyover country provincials living in communities devastated by the corrosive solvency of aggressive finance capital on the make, weakened by disappearing communities, impotent traditions, mocked religion, broken families, and constant anxiety about providing the daily bread? And when have the imaginations of those so opposed been less able to conceive workable solutions that embrace both sides? Are there solutions that are able to embrace both sides?

Can the institution of representative democracy, arguably a product of the Age of Reason with its belief in "nature and nature's God" and the "inalienable natural rights" that can be discovered by the enlightened human intellect, survive in post-Enlightenment post-modernism with its hermeneutics of suspicion in which there are no admitted "facts", no unifying "truths", and "right" is a function of "might", the Will to Power.

[Jan 22, 2017] It's urgent Democrats stop squabbling and recognize seven basic truths:

Jan 22, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
libezkova : January 22, 2017 at 10:12 AM
, 2017 at 10:12 AM
Robert Reich:

http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/reich-7-hard-truths-democrats-future-bleak-without-radical-reforms

It's urgent Democrats stop squabbling and recognize seven basic truths:

1. The Party is on life support. Democrats are in the minority in both the House and Senate, with no end in sight. Since the start of the Obama Administration they've lost 1,034 state and federal seats. They hold only governorships, and face 32 state legislatures fully under GOP control. No one speaks for the party as a whole. The Party's top leaders are aging, and the back bench is thin.

The future is bleak unless the Party radically reforms itself. If Republicans do well in the 2018 midterms, they'll control Congress and the Supreme Court for years. If they continue to hold most statehouses, they could entrench themselves for a generation.

2. We are now in a populist era. The strongest and most powerful force in American politics is a rejection of the status quo, a repudiation of politics as usual, and a deep and profound distrust of elites, including the current power structure of America.

That force propelled Donald Trump into the White House. He represents the authoritarian side of populism. Bernie Sanders's primary campaign represented the progressive side.

The question hovering over America's future is which form of populism will ultimately prevail. At some point, hopefully, Trump voters will discover they've been hoodwinked. Even in its purist form, authoritarian populism doesn't work because it destroys democracy. Democrats must offer the alternative.

3. The economy is not working for most Americans. The economic data show lower unemployment and higher wages than eight years ago, but the typical family is still poorer today than it was in 2000, adjusted for inflation; median weekly earning are no higher than in 2000; a large number of working-age people-mostly men-have dropped out of the labor force altogether; and job insecurity is endemic.

Inequality is wider and its consequences more savage in America than in any other advanced nation.

4. The Party's moneyed establishment-big donors, major lobbyists, retired members of Congress who have become bundlers and lobbyists-are part of the problem. Even though many consider themselves "liberal" and don't recoil from an active government, their preferred remedies spare corporations and the wealthiest from making any sacrifices.

The moneyed interests in the Party allowed the deregulation of Wall Street and then encouraged the bailout of the Street. They're barely concerned about the growth of tax havens, inside trading, increasing market power in major industries (pharmaceuticals, telecom, airlines, private health insurers, food processors, finance, even high tech), and widening inequality.

Meanwhile, they've allowed labor unions to shrink to near irrelevance. Unionized workers used to be the ground troops of the Democratic Party. In the 1950s, more than a third of all private-sector workers were unionized; today, fewer than 7 percent are.

5. It's not enough for Democrats to be "against Trump," and defend the status quo. Democrats have to fight like hell against regressive policies Trump wants to put in place, but Democrats also need to fight for a bold vision of what the nation must achieve-like expanding Social Security, and financing the expansion by raising the cap on income subject to Social Security taxes; Medicare for all; and world-class free public education for all.

And Democrats must diligently seek to establish countervailing power-stronger trade unions, community banks, more incentives for employee ownership and small businesses, and electoral reforms that get big money out of politics and expand the right to vote.

6. The life of the Party-its enthusiasm, passion, youth, principles, and ideals-was elicited by Bernie Sanders's campaign. This isn't to denigrate what Hillary Clinton accomplished-she did, after all, win the popular vote in the presidential election by almost 3 million people. It's only to recognize what all of us witnessed: the huge outpouring of excitement that Bernie's campaign inspired, especially from the young. This is the future of the Democratic Party.

7. The Party must change from being a giant fundraising machine to a movement.It needs to unite the poor, working class, and middle class, black and white-who haven't had a raise in 30 years, and who feel angry, powerless, and disenfranchised.

ilsm -> libezkova... , January 22, 2017 at 11:02 AM
1. the party is run by crooks

2. the party is f the bankers

3. our bankers are doing very well

4. our bankers are the party

5. we don't have anything that sells except for our bankers

6. DNC crooks are the life of the party

7. party needs more GLBT and abortion issues to get the plundered to buy in

Peter K. -> libezkova... , January 22, 2017 at 11:29 AM
Some uncomfortable truths from Reich.

"6. The life of the Party-its enthusiasm, passion, youth, principles, and ideals-was elicited by Bernie Sanders's campaign."

point -> libezkova... , January 22, 2017 at 11:44 AM
Cruising all my lefty bookmarked sites, this is the only one (Reich's bog) that comes even close to saying the Democratic Party is risking permanent irrelevance unless sufficient grass roots anger topples the leadership wholesale and rebuilds from the bottom.
Peter K. -> point... , January 22, 2017 at 11:50 AM
That's what happened to the Republican party. Trump toppled the establishment by tapping into people's anger about the "carnage." Now we'll see what he actually does. I don't think think even he knows what he'll do.

Meanwhile establishment Democrats deny that there is any carnage.

Brexit and Trump only happened b/c of a weird uptick in racism and sexism. B/c of social media.

LOLWUT?

[Jan 21, 2017] Divide and Rule Class, Hate, and the 2016 Election

Notable quotes:
"... both ..."
"... No One Left to Lie To ..."
"... about one kind of hate ..."
"... trumping another kind of hate ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... Appeal to Reason ..."
"... Paul Street's latest book is They Rule: The 1% v. Democracy (Paradigm, 2014) ..."
Jan 21, 2017 | www.counterpunch.org
Listen and you can hear the sneering "elite" liberal left narrative about how the big dumb white working class is about to get screwed over by the incoming multi-millionaire- and billionaire-laden Trump administration it voted into office. Once those poor saps in the white working class wake up to their moronic mistake, the narrative suggests, they'll come running back to their supposed friends the Democrats.

Trump Didn't Really Win Over Working Class America: Clinton Lost it

It's true, of course, that Trump is going to betray white working class people who voted for him in the hope that he would be a populist champion of their interests – a hope he mendaciously cultivated. But there are three basic and related problems with the scornful liberal-left storyline. The first difficulty is that the notion of a big white proletarian "rustbelt rebellion" for Trump has been badly oversold. "The real story of the 2016 election," the left political scientist Anthony DiMaggio notes , "is not that Trump won over working class America, so much as Clinton and the Democrats lost it The decline of Democratic voters among the working class in 2016 (compared to 2012) was far larger than the increase in Republican voters during those two elections" If the Democrats had run Bernie Sanders or someone else with "a meaningful history of seeking to help the working class," DiMaggio observes, they might well have won.

Populism-Manipulation is a Bipartisan Affair

Second, betraying working class voters (of all colors, by the way) in service to concentrated wealth and power (the "One Percent" in post-Occupy Wall Street parlance) is what presidents and other top elected officials from both of the reigning capitalist U.S. political parties do. What did the white and the broader (multiracial) working class experience when the neoliberal corporate Democrats Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama held the White House? Abject disloyalty towards egalitarian-sounding campaign rhetoric and a resumption of (big) business (rule) as usual. An ever-increasing upward distribution of income, wealth, and power into fewer hands.

It's an old story. In his 1999 book on Bill and Hillary Clinton, No One Left to Lie To , the still left Christopher Hitchens usefully described "the essence of American politics, when distilled," as "the manipulation of populism by elitism. That elite is most successful," Hitchens added, "which can claim the heartiest allegiance of the fickle crowd; can present itself as most 'in touch' with popular concerns; can anticipate the tides and pulses of public opinion; can, in short, be the least apparently 'elitist.' It is no great distance from Huey Long's robust cry of 'Every man a king' to the insipid 'inclusiveness' of [Bill Clinton's slogan] 'Putting People First,' but the smarter elite managers have learned in the interlude that solid, measurable pledges have to be distinguished by a reserve' tag that earmarks them for the bankrollers and backers."

True, the Republicans don't manipulate populism in the same way as the Democrats. The dismal, dollar-drenched Dems don the outwardly liberal and diverse, many-colored cloak of slick, Hollywood- , Silicon Valley-, Ivy League-and Upper West Side-approved bicoastal multiculturalism. The radically regressive and reactionary Republicans connect their manipulation more to white "heartland" nationalism, sexism, hyper-masculinism, nativism, evangelism, family values, and (to be honest) racism.

But in both versions, that of the Democrats and that of the Republicans, Goldman Sachs (and Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America et al.) always prevails. The "bankrollers and bankers" atop the Deep State continue to reign. The nation's unelected deep state dictatorship of money (UDSDoM, UDoM for short) continues to call the shots. That was certainly true under the arch-neoliberal Barack Obama , whose relentless service to the nation's economic ruling class has been amply documented by numerous journalists, authors (the present writer included ) and academics.

Obama ascended to the White House with record-setting Wall Street contributions. He governed accordingly, from the staffing of his administration (chock full of revolving door operatives from elite financial institutions) to the policies he advanced – and the ones he didn't, like (to name a handful) a financial transaction tax, the re-legalization of union organizing, single-payer health insurance, a health insurance public option, tough conditions on bankers receiving bailout money, and the prosecution of a single Wall Street executive for the excesses that created the financial meltdown.

Anyone who thinks that any of that might have changed to any significant degree under a Hillary Clinton presidency is living in a fantasy world. She gave every indication that a president Clinton 45 would be every bit as friendly to the finance-led corporate establishment (the UDoM) as the arch-neoliberal Cliinton42 and Obama44 presidencies. She was Wall Street's golden/Goldman/Citigroup girl.

We are Not the 99 Percent

Third, elite liberals and left liberals often miss a key point on who white (and nonwhite) working class people most directly interact when it comes to the infliction of what the sociologist Richard Sennett called " the hidden injuries of class ." It is through regular contact with the professional and managerial class, not the mostly invisible corporate and financial elite, that the working class mostly commonly experiences class inequality and oppression in America.

Working people might see hyper-opulent "rich bastards" like Trump, Bill Gates, and even Warren Buffett on television. In their real lives, they carry out "ridiculous orders" and receive "idiotic" reprimands from middle- and upper middle-class coordinators-from, to quote a white university maintenance worker I spoke with last summer, "know-it-all pencil-pushers who don't give a flying fuck about regular working guys like me."

This worker voted for Trump "just to piss-off all the big shot (professional class) liberals" he perceived as constantly disrespecting and pushing him around.

It is not lost on the white working class that much of this managerial and professional class "elite" tends to align with the Democratic Party and its purported liberal and multicultural, cosmopolitan, and environmentalist values. It doesn't help that the professional and managerial "elites" are often with the politically correct multiculturalism and the environmentalism that many white workers (actually) have (unpleasant as this might be to acknowledge) some rational economic and other reasons to see as a threat to their living standards, status, and well-being.

The Green Party leader and Teamster union activist Howie Hawkins put it very well last summer. "The Democratic Party ideology is the ideology of the professional class," Hawkins said. "Meritocratic competition. Do well in school, get well-rewarded." (Unfortunately, perhaps, his comment reminds me of the bumper sticker slogan I've seen on the back of more than a few beat-up cars in factory parking lots and trailer parks over the years: "My Kid Beat Up Your Honor Student.") "The biggest threat to the Democrats isn't losing votes to the Greens," Hawkins noted. It is losing votes to Trump, who "sounds like he's mad at the system. So they throw a protest vote to him."

The white maintenance worker is certainly going to get screwed by Trump's corporate presidency. You can take that to the bank. He would also have gotten shafted by Hillary's corporate presidency if she had won. You can take that down to your favorite financial institution too. And the worker's anger at all the "big shots" with their Hillary and Obama bumper stickers on the back of their Volvos and Audis and Priuses is not based merely on some foolish and "uneducated" failure to perceive his common interests with the rest of the "99 percent" against the top hundredth.

We are the 99 Percent, except, well, we're not. Among other things, a two-class model of America deletes the massive disparities that exist between the working-class majority of Americans and the nation's professional and managerial class. In the U.S. as across the world capitalist system, ordinary working people suffer not just from the elite private and profit-seeking capitalist ownership of workplace and society. They also confront the stark oppression inherent in what left economists Robin Hahnel and Mike Albert call the "corporate division of labor"-an alienating, de-humanizing, and hierarchical subdivision of tasks "in which a few workers have excellent conditions and empowering circumstances, many fall well below that, and most workers have essentially no power at all."

Over time, this pecking order hardens "into a broad and pervasive class division" whereby one class - roughly the top fifth of the workforce -"controls its own circumstances and the circumstances of others below," while another (the working class) "obeys orders and gets what its members can eke out." The "coordinator class," Albert notes, "looks down on workers as instruments with which to get jobs done. It engages workers paternally, seeing them as needing guidance and oversight and as lacking the finer human qualities that justify both autonomous input and the higher incomes needed to support more expensive tastes." That sparks no small working class resentment.

It comes with ballot box implications. Many white workers will "vote against their pocketbook interests" by embracing a viciously noxious and super-oligarchic Republican over a supposedly liberal (neoliberal) Democrat backed by middle- and upper middle- class elites who contemptuously lord it over those workers daily. The negative attention that dreadful Republican (Trump) gets from "elite" upper-middle class talking heads in corporate media often just reinforces that ugly attachment.

2016: Hate Trumped Hate

It doesn't help the Democrats when their top candidates channel elitist contempt of the working in their campaign rhetoric. Here's how the silver-tongued Harvard Law graduate Obama referred to white working-class voters in old blue-collar towns decimated by industrial job losses in the early spring of 2008: "They get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations." Amusingly enough, these reflections were seized on by his neoliberal compatriot and rival for the Democratic nomination, the Yale Law graduate Hillary Clinton. She hoped to use Obama's condescending remarks to resuscitate her flagging campaign against a candidate she now accused of class snotty-ness. "I was taken aback by the demeaning remarks Senator Obama made about people in small-town America," she said. "His remarks are elitist and out of touch." Clinton staffers in North Carolina even gave out stickers saying "I'm not bitter."

How darkly ironic is to compare that (failed) campaign gambit from nearly nine years ago with the campaign Hillary ran in 2016! Hillary's latest and hopefully last campaign was quite consciously and recklessly about contempt for the white working class. As John Pilger recently reflected :

"Today, false symbolism is all. 'Identity' is all. In 2016, Hillary Clinton stigmatised millions of [white working class and rural – P.S.] voters as 'a basket of deplorables, racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic - you name it'. Her abuse was handed out at an LGBT rally as part of her cynical campaign to win over minorities by abusing a white mostly working-class majority. Divide and rule, this is called; or identity politics in which race and gender conceal class, and allow the waging of class war. Trump understood this."

The "deplorables" comment was a great gift to Trump, whose staffers gave people buttons saying "I'm an Adorable Deplorable."

Disappointed Hillary voters have chanted "Love Trumps Hate" while marching against the incoming quasi-fascist president. But, really, the 2016 U.S. presidential election was about one kind of hate – the "heartland" white nationalist Republican version – trumping another kind of hate , the more bi-coastal and outwardly multicultural and diverse Democratic version.

Let us not forget former Obama campaign manager David Ploufe's comment to the New York Times last March on how the Hillary campaign would conduct itself against a Trump candidacy: "hope and change, not so much; more like hate and castrate."

Meanwhile, the nation's UDoM rules on, whichever party holds nominal power atop the visible state. Pardon my French, but the working class (of all colors) is fucked either way.

Goldman Sachs Wins Either Way

We might also think of the essence of American politics as the manipulation of identity politics – and identity-based hatred – by elitism. Reduced to a corporate-managed electorate (Sheldon Wolin), the citizenry is identity-played by a moneyed elite that pulls the strings behind the duopoly's candidate-centered spectacles of faux democracy. As the Left author Chris Hedges noted three years ago , "Both sides of the political spectrum are manipulated by the same forces. If you're some right-wing Christian zealot in Georgia, then it's homosexuals and abortion and all these, you know, wedge issues that are used to whip you up emotionally. If you are a liberal in Manhattan, it's – you know, they'll be teaching creationism in your schools or whatever Yet in fact it's just a game, because whether it's Bush or whether it's Obama, Goldman Sachs always wins. There is no way to vote against the interests of Goldman Sachs." (We can update that formulation to say "whether it's Trump or where it's Hillary.")

For all their claims of concern for ordinary people and beneath all their claims of bitter, personal, and partisan contempt for their major party electoral opponents, the Republican and Democratic "elites" are united with the capitalist "elite" in top-down hatred for the nation's multi-racial working-class majority.

The resistance movement we need to develop cannot be merely about choosing one of the two different major party brands of Machiavellian, ruling class hate. The reigning political organizations are what Upton Sinclair called (in the original Appeal to Reason newspaper version of The Jungle ) "two wings of the same bird of prey." We must come out from under both of those two noxious wings and their obsessive and endless focus on the quadrennial candidate-centered electoral extravaganzas, which have replaced the recently closed Ringling Brothers show as the greatest circus in the world. We cannot fall prey anymore to the reigning message that meaningful democratic participation consists of going into a voting booth to mark a ballot once every four years and then going home to (in Noam Chomsky's words ) "let other [and very rich ] people run the world [into the ground]." Join the debate on Facebook

Paul Street's latest book is They Rule: The 1% v. Democracy (Paradigm, 2014)

[Jan 21, 2017] Theres class warfare, all right, but its my class, the rich class, thats making war, and were winning

Notable quotes:
"... In the face of the enormous political chasm between the 99 percent and the 1 percent, a strategy of elite-led, bipartisan deal-cutting premised on calls for "shared sacrifice" leaves this grossly inequitable economic and political fabric intact. As such, the 99 percent are caught in the vise of small-bore policies from their supposed friends and allies while their opponents encircle them with scorched-earth politics. ..."
"... The Obama administration and much of the leadership of the Democratic Party took extreme care not to upset these basic interests. As a consequence, they squandered an exceptional political opportunity. The financial crisis and the Great Recession were one of those moments when members of the business sector were "stripped naked as leaders and strategists," in the words of Simon Johnson, former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. The Great Depression was another. ..."
"... As he put the House of Morgan and other bankers on trial, Ferdinand Pecora, chief counsel of the Senate Banking Committee, helped popularize during the age of Al Capone a term not heard today: the "bankster." These hearings compelled Roosevelt to support stricter financial regulation than he might have otherwise. ..."
"... One cannot talk about crime in the streets today without talking about crime in the suites. ..."
"... The political intransigence lavishly on display in the Republican Party - which repeatedly brought Congress to a caustic standstill - obscured how a major segment of the Democratic Party was loath to mount any major challenge to the entrenched financial and political interests that have captured American politics today. ..."
"... For all the bluster about political polarization, the debate over what to do about the economy, the social safety net, and financial regulation - like the elite discussions over what to do about mass incarceration - oscillated within a very narrow range defined by neoliberalism for much of Obama's tenure. Indeed, the president repeatedly bragged that the federal budget for discretionary spending on domestic programs had shrunk under his watch to the smallest share of the economy since Dwight Eisenhower was president. ..."
Jan 21, 2017 | www.jacobinmag.com

Vast and growing economic inequalities rooted in vast and growing political inequalities are the preeminent problem facing the United States today. They are the touchstone of many of the major issues that vex the country - from mass incarceration to mass underemployment to climate change to the economic recovery of Wall Street but not Main Street and Martin Luther King Street.

In the face of the enormous political chasm between the 99 percent and the 1 percent, a strategy of elite-led, bipartisan deal-cutting premised on calls for "shared sacrifice" leaves this grossly inequitable economic and political fabric intact. As such, the 99 percent are caught in the vise of small-bore policies from their supposed friends and allies while their opponents encircle them with scorched-earth politics.

The Obama administration and much of the leadership of the Democratic Party took extreme care not to upset these basic interests. As a consequence, they squandered an exceptional political opportunity. The financial crisis and the Great Recession were one of those moments when members of the business sector were "stripped naked as leaders and strategists," in the words of Simon Johnson, former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. The Great Depression was another.

When President Franklin D. Roosevelt came into office, the Hoover administration was thoroughly discredited, as was the business sector. FDR recognized that the country was ready for a clean break with the past, and symbolically and substantively cultivated that sentiment. The break did not come from FDR alone. Massive numbers of Americans mobilized in unions, women's organizations, veterans' groups, senior citizen associations, and civil right groups to ensure that the country switched course.

During the Depression, President Roosevelt was forced to broaden the public understanding of crime to include corporate crime. The Senate's riveting Pecora hearings during the waning days of the Hoover administration and the start of the Roosevelt presidency turned a scorching public spotlight on the malfeasance of the corporate sector and its complicity in sparking the Depression.

As he put the House of Morgan and other bankers on trial, Ferdinand Pecora, chief counsel of the Senate Banking Committee, helped popularize during the age of Al Capone a term not heard today: the "bankster." These hearings compelled Roosevelt to support stricter financial regulation than he might have otherwise.

One cannot talk about crime in the streets today without talking about crime in the suites. Over the past four decades, the public obsession with getting tougher on street crime coincided with the retreat of the state in regulating corporate malfeasance - everything from hedge funds to credit default swaps to workplace safety. Keeping the focus on street crime was a convenient strategy to shift public attention and resources from crime in the suites to crime in the streets.

As billionaire financier Warren Buffet quipped in 2006, "There's class warfare, all right, but it's my class, the rich class, that's making war, and we're winning." President Obama's persistent calls during his first term for a politics that rose above politics and championed "shared sacrifice" denied this reality and demobilized the public. It thwarted the consolidation of a compelling alternative political vision on which new coalitions and movements could be forged to challenge fundamental inequalities, including mass imprisonment and the growing tentacles of the carceral state.

The political intransigence lavishly on display in the Republican Party - which repeatedly brought Congress to a caustic standstill - obscured how a major segment of the Democratic Party was loath to mount any major challenge to the entrenched financial and political interests that have captured American politics today.

For all the bluster about political polarization, the debate over what to do about the economy, the social safety net, and financial regulation - like the elite discussions over what to do about mass incarceration - oscillated within a very narrow range defined by neoliberalism for much of Obama's tenure. Indeed, the president repeatedly bragged that the federal budget for discretionary spending on domestic programs had shrunk under his watch to the smallest share of the economy since Dwight Eisenhower was president.

[Jan 16, 2017] DemoRats still c annot reconcile with the fact that your corporatist, neoliberal, war monger candidate lost and thier the Third Way betryal of working class did not pay them this time

Jan 16, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
ilsm : January 16, 2017 at 05:55 PM
poor democrats!

Cannot reconcile your corporatist, neoliberal, war monger losing to a TV star who suggests we should not tilt with a nuclear power with insane doctrine defining when peace should be breeched; you say the winner is 'illegitimate' or make up relations with a nationalist leader who does not toe the 'one worlder' line.

US should be Denmark!

libezkova -> ilsm... , January 16, 2017 at 06:42 PM
Trump was right to point out that the Clintons and their allies atop the Democratic National Committee rigged the game against Bernie.

This rigging was consistent with the neoliberal corporate Democratic Party elite's longstanding vicious hatred of left-wing of the party and anti-plutocratic populists. They hate and viciously fight them in the ranks of their pro-Wall Street Party. It's "Clinton Third Way Democrats" who essentially elected Trump, because Bernie for them is more dangerous than Trump.

The Democratic party became a neoliberal party of top 10% (may be top 20%), the party of bankers and white collar professionals. "Soft" neoliberals, to distinguish them from "hard" neoliberals (GOP).

Under Bill Clinton the Democrats have become the party of Financial Oligarchy. At this time corporate interests were moving to finance as their main activity and that was a very profitable betrayal for Clintons. They were royally remunerated for that.

Clintons have positioned the Dems as puppets of financial oligarchy and got in return two major things:

  1. Money for the Party (and themselves)
  2. The ability to control the large part of MSM, which was owned by the same corporations, who were instrumental in neoliberal takeover of the USA. When the neoliberal media have to choose between their paymasters and the truth, their paymasters win every time. Like under Bolshevism, they are soldiers of the Party.

In any case, starting from Clinton Presidency Democratic Party turned into a party of neoliberal DemoRats and lost any connection with the majority of the USA population. Like Republicans they now completely depends on "divide and conquer" strategy. Essentially they became "Republicans light." And that's why they used "identity wedge" politics to attract African American votes and minorities (especially woman and sexual minorities; Bill Clinton probably helped to incarcerate more black males than any other president). As if Spanish and African-American population as a whole have different economic interests than white working class and white lower middle class.

So Dems became a party which represents an alliance of neoliberal establishment and minorities, where minorities are duped again and again (as in Barack Obama "change we can believe in" bait and switch classic). This dishonest playing of race and gender cards was a trademark of Hillary Clinton campaign.

See

10 reasons why #DemExit is serious. Getting rid of Debbie Wasserman Schultz is not enough by Sophia A. McClennen

http://www.salon.com/2016/07/29/10_reasons_why_demexit_is_serious_getting_rid_of_debbie_wasserman_schultz_is_not_enough/

[Jan 16, 2017] Paul Krugman With All Due Disrespect

Notable quotes:
"... What do you call dumping a Ukraine president? And Qaddafi, blowing up the middle east, and funding al Qaeda? Fraud/treason, both Clinton neocon connections same as Reagan, shruBush and Obama. ..."
"... "In Yugoslavia, the U.S. and NATO had long sought to cut off Serbian nationalist and Yugoslav leader Slobodan Milosevic from the international system through economic sanctions and military action. In 2000, the U.S. spent millions of dollars in aid for political parties, campaign costs and independent media. Funding and broadcast equipment provided to the media arms of the opposition were a decisive factor in electing opposition candidate Vojislav Kostunica as Yugoslav president, according to Levin. "If it wouldn't have been for overt intervention Milosevic would have been very likely to have won another term," he said." ..."
"... Google Camp Bonesteel. A large NATO base funded mostly by you to keep Serbia under wraps. Enforcing the Clinton neocon "just peace". With threat of US' brand of expensive high tech mass murder. ..."
"... Democrats voting against legalizing drug imports from Canada (Hall of Shame:) Bennett, Cory Booker, Cantwell, Carper, Casey, Coons, Donnelly, Heinrich, Heitkamp, Menendez, Murray, Tester, and Warner. ..."
"... progressive neoliberals are libertarians and market idolators' lackies that want gays to get their wedding cakes from Christian bakeries. ..."
"... 30000 destroyed e-mails, denying the public access to records. How many felony counts is 30000? Read the Federal Records Act. ..."
Jan 16, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
ilsm -> DrDick... , January 16, 2017 at 05:44 PM
What do you call dumping a Ukraine president? And Qaddafi, blowing up the middle east, and funding al Qaeda? Fraud/treason, both Clinton neocon connections same as Reagan, shruBush and Obama.

The recondite democrat bar for traitor is very high. As arcane as the demo-neolib definition of progressive!

ilsm -> New Deal democrat... , January 16, 2017 at 05:48 PM
The center has moved to the Reagan republican side except for its abhorrence of any judeo-christian sexual code.

Neutrality is shameful when the time is siding with the immoral.

llisa2u2 : , January 16, 2017 at 12:05 PM
The old saying what's good for the goose is good for the gander. Well considering all that the Republican party and leadership has dissed out for 8 years or so. Hey, they need to be dissed right back. Trump has set the "TONE" that all is fair as he set the rules, established the rule-book way below the belt, loves playing in the swamp and slinging mud. He deserves any and all that gets slung back from in and out of the swamp, in all global directions! Unfortunately everyone else will be the only citizens to suffer. He's just way above the maddening crowd, and protected by all his cronies!
ilsm -> llisa2u2... , January 16, 2017 at 04:14 PM
yup, only difference between the neocons of Kagan and Bush and progressive neolibs is gay rights.
Jay : , January 16, 2017 at 12:54 PM
US is a master of manipulating foreign elections.

http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-us-intervention-foreign-elections-20161213-story.html

"In Yugoslavia, the U.S. and NATO had long sought to cut off Serbian nationalist and Yugoslav leader Slobodan Milosevic from the international system through economic sanctions and military action. In 2000, the U.S. spent millions of dollars in aid for political parties, campaign costs and independent media. Funding and broadcast equipment provided to the media arms of the opposition were a decisive factor in electing opposition candidate Vojislav Kostunica as Yugoslav president, according to Levin. "If it wouldn't have been for overt intervention Milosevic would have been very likely to have won another term," he said."

ilsm -> Jay... , January 16, 2017 at 03:38 PM
Google Camp Bonesteel. A large NATO base funded mostly by you to keep Serbia under wraps. Enforcing the Clinton neocon "just peace". With threat of US' brand of expensive high tech mass murder.

MLK's memory is defiled by the fake liberals grabbing it for revolting political gain.

JohnH : , January 16, 2017 at 01:28 PM
Democrats voting against legalizing drug imports from Canada (Hall of Shame:) Bennett, Cory Booker, Cantwell, Carper, Casey, Coons, Donnelly, Heinrich, Heitkamp, Menendez, Murray, Tester, and Warner.

Presumably many, like Cantwell, are avid supporters of 'free' trade--trade that is rigged in favor of certain special interests. Legalizing drug imports from Canada would have hurt the special interests that fund their campaigns.

Only a prelude to Democrats caving to Trump...

ilsm -> JohnH... , January 16, 2017 at 03:35 PM
progressive neoliberals are libertarians and market idolators' lackies that want gays to get their wedding cakes from Christian bakeries.
ilsm -> ken melvin... , January 16, 2017 at 03:34 PM
30000 destroyed e-mails, denying the public access to records. How many felony counts is 30000? Read the Federal Records Act.
B.T. -> ken melvin... , January 16, 2017 at 04:40 PM
What drove the assassination of Bernie Sanders campaign?

People who ask if Trump is illegitimate need to ask if Hillary was as well.

After all, we aren't talking about literal rigging right? Just leaks with bad timing?

DeDude : , January 16, 2017 at 02:14 PM
Considering that Trump and the GOP majority got millions less votes than their democratic counterparts, one can question the legitimacy (but not the legality) of the laws they pass - since they would not represent the will of the people.
ilsm -> DeDude... , January 16, 2017 at 03:32 PM
poor dud
libezkova -> DeDude... , January 16, 2017 at 06:09 PM
Yes that's true. But all those votes belong to just two places: NYC and California.

You have a problem here my democratic friend.

ilsm : , January 16, 2017 at 03:27 PM
por pk!

I start this sermon with poor pk, and those who of unsound logic who think he is not jumped the shark poor pk.

John Lewis.......

From Dr King's Vietnam Sermon Apr 1967:

"Now, I've chosen to preach about the war in Vietnam because I agree with Dante, that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in a period of moral crisis maintain their neutrality. There comes a time when silence becomes betrayal."

The liberals' silence is betrayal! All the democrat sponsored fake liberal agendas around this holiday remain damnably silent about the evil that is Clinton/Obama war to end "unjust peace".

Here is my comment for poor pk, Lewis and the whining do-over tools:

Last week US drones killed 3 supposed terrorists in Yemen, they were supposed to be al Qaeda in Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). No charges, no jury, no judge.

AQAP is related to the guys Obama is funding to take down Assad and put Syria in ruinous hate filled group of jihadis like run amok in Libya.

So silent on deadly evil; but so boisterous about affronts to gay people wanting nice cakes!

Lewis and his crooked neoliberal ilk have been milking Dr. King for 50 years!


Chris Herbert : , January 16, 2017 at 04:17 PM
Hey, if it's politics every pathology from torture to assassination to bombing civilians is approved. If you did it as a person, you would be immediately incarcerated. This nation state worship, or religious worship in many parts of the world, is infused with pathology. It's in our DNA apparently. We are over killers par excellence. Only rats are as good. I'm betting on the rats.
ilsm -> Chris Herbert... , January 16, 2017 at 06:01 PM
why we have Dr King and Gandhi.

I like the rat metaphor for neolibs and GOP.

Jesse : , January 16, 2017 at 05:35 PM

"Politicians were mostly people who'd had too little morals and ethics to stay lawyers."

George R. R. Martin

ilsm : , -1
poor democrats!

Cannot reconcile your corporatist, neoliberal, war monger losing to a TV star who suggests we should not tilt with a nuclear power with insane doctrine defining when peace should be breeched; you say the winner is 'illegitimate' or make up relations with a nationalist leader who does not toe the 'one worlder' line.

US should be Denmark!

[Jan 15, 2017] The Congressional defeat, insured by Democrats, of the proposal by Bernie Sanders to allow the import of drugs from Canada to lower drug prices in the United States

Jan 15, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
JohnH -> anne...
, January 14, 2017 at 08:00 AM
The Congressional defeat, insured by Democrats, of the proposal by Bernie Sanders to allow the import of drugs from Canada to lower drug prices in the United States.
'
This is only the beginning of Democrats' appeasement of Trump and Republicans...it will be stunning to watch how much damage Republicans can do during Trump's first 90 days with only a slim majority in the Senate. During the first 90 days under Obama, who had a true electoral mandate and big majorities in both houses, Democrats basically sat on their hands, blaming Republicans for their unwillingness to do much for the American people.
Observer -> anne... , January 14, 2017 at 08:50 AM
So if we matched Canada, we'd see a 30% decrease, of a segment which comprises 10% of health care spending, or 3% overall decrease.

"PwC's Health Research Institute projects the 2017 medical cost trend to be the same as the current year – a 6.5% growth rate."

So reaching Canadian spending levels would counter ~ 6 months of health care cost increases. Reaching OECD levels buys you another couple of months.

Put another way, reaching OECD levels for drug spending closes 10% of the US-OECD spending gap.

Not nothing, but "fixing" drug prices seems more like an emotional (i.e. political) talking point than a real silver bullet for health care costs.

http://www.pwc.com/us/en/health-industries/health-research-institute/behind-the-numbers.html

pgl -> Observer... , January 14, 2017 at 11:17 AM
Ever noticed that marketing costs are 30% of revenue? This is a by product of the monopoly power in this sector. Dean Baker has often noted we could have the government do the R&D and then have real competition in manufacturing.
libezkova -> Observer... , January 14, 2017 at 10:40 PM
Don't be a lobbyist for Big Farma.

You forgot that those researchers often produce useless or even dangerous drags, which are inferior to existing. Looks as scams practiced with hypertension drugs.

This rat race for blockbuster drugs is the same as corruption in financial industry.

http://www.alternet.org/story/148907/15_dangerous_drugs_big_pharma_shoves_down_our_throats

pgl -> anne... , January 14, 2017 at 11:16 AM
Actually the industry profile is very relevant but goes in a different direction - if US firms were compelled to charge market (not monopoly) prices, we would better compete with foreign firms.
pgl -> Observer... , January 14, 2017 at 11:14 AM
Any excuse to charge sky high prices for drugs that don't cost that much to manufacture? If these monopoly profits were not so high, we would buy more drugs and employ more people.
Observer -> pgl... , January 14, 2017 at 12:57 PM
Do you think we would really buy materially more drugs if prices were lower? Particularly enough more, at those (30-50%?) lower prices, to generate the funds to employ more people?

(If that actually generated at much or more funds, it would seem like the pharma companies, seeking to make as much money as possible, would have already set prices at that lower per unit level.)

In any case, that seems like a LOT more drugs.

Perhaps Anne has data on the number of scripts per person in the US vs OECD.

pgl -> Observer... ,