ChrisWeigant.com

Time For Nancy Pelosi To Go?

[ Posted Thursday, June 22nd, 2017 – 17:48 UTC ]

In the aftermath of this week's special House election in Georgia, the question has arisen whether Nancy Pelosi should continue to hold the House Minority Leader position, heading into the 2018 midterm elections. It's a valid question, since Republican Karen Handel seemed almost to be running against Pelosi herself, if you saw any of her campaign ads or literature. Her entire strategy seemed to be to link neophyte politician Jon Ossoff with Pelosi -- and not in a good way. It's impossible to tell how much this contributed to Ossoff's loss, but if the answer to that question turns out to be "four percent of the vote or more," then demonizing Pelosi would have been the difference between his winning and losing. So is it time for Nancy to go?

I for one am extremely reluctant to come to that conclusion, but I can certainly see why others are pushing Pelosi to step down. Pelosi is one of the top three Democrats right now, along with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez. Both Perez and Schumer are far less recognized by the general public, which is mostly due to them being fairly new in their leadership jobs. Harry Reid didn't step down until he declined to run in last year's election, and Perez has only led the D.N.C. for a few months. In comparison, Pelosi has been leading the House Democrats since the 2006 midterm elections. That difference has meant that she is currently much more nationally-known, so a good case could be made for her being the "face of the Democratic Party" right now.

Others who are not in major leadership positions within the party are also nationally-known, as well. There are Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, the two major presidential candidates from the last election cycle. Sanders is still fighting the good fight in the Senate, while Clinton only occasionally enters the political arena these days (to be fair, she's busy writing a book about her experiences). There are also people like Elizabeth Warren and Al Franken, with their own nationwide presence on the political stage. In Franken's case, he was already well-known from his comedic career, but Elizabeth Warren is famous for her political positions and her political persona. Others have only recently had the spotlight shined on them, such as Adam Schiff, who has been seen on television a lot of late due to being the ranking Democrat on the House committee investigating President Trump.

Other than Schiff, however, there's one thing common about most prominent Democrats these days: the large number of birthdays they've had. Today, in fact, is Elizabeth Warren's 68th birthday (many happy returns, Senator Warren!). Bernie Sanders is 75 years old. Hillary Clinton is 69, Chuck Schumer is 66, and Nancy Pelosi is 77 years old. Pelosi's not the oldest in the party by far -- her fellow Californian Senator Dianne Feinstein was also born today, 84 years ago. Feinstein is reportedly considering running for another 6-year Senate term next year (please don't, DiFi, but that's a whole 'nother column...). With Barack Obama gone, Democrats seem to have taken a generational step backwards.

Of course, this is due to the inherent nature of acquiring political power, especially in Congress. Harry Reid was 77 when he stepped down, which is the only reason (relative) spring chicken Schumer was able to move up in the ranks. It can take a long time to assimilate power in either the House or Senate -- many years, in fact. Pelosi was younger than 70 when she took over, it's worth mentioning, but that was over a decade ago.

But that's not always how it has to be. Paul Ryan was only 45 years old when he became Speaker of the House. He's 47 now. So perhaps Democrats might now want to consider getting some younger blood in their higher ranks?

Overall, there's a case to be made for keeping Pelosi and a case to be made against her continuation of her leadership role. The case for her is easy to state: her experience, her leadership skills, and her funding prowess. Pelosi raises millions for the party and more millions for individual House members. This may sound crass, but that is indeed an asset for any party leader. It's also how Pelosi has so many loyalists in the House -- she's mentored and supported a whole lot of Democrats in their efforts to get elected, over the years. By doing so, she has built up a lot of loyalty.

Her experience is pretty vast, when it comes to politics. She was raised on politics, seeing both her father and her brother become mayor of Baltimore. She literally learned the trade at her daddy's knee. She knows how old-school politics works, inside and out. Because of this, she's done a masterful job of keeping her caucus together in both the majority and in the minority. Before Pelosi took the reins -- breaking a glass ceiling by becoming the first Speaker of the House in history -- Democrats were a pretty despondent bunch, and were ripe for Republican efforts to peel blocs of them off when voting on individual bills. Under Pelosi, House Democrats have become much more cohesive and much stronger as a caucus.

During what should have been two years of constant progress after Barack Obama was first elected president, it certainly wasn't Nancy Pelosi's fault that more didn't get done. Lots of very progressive bills were approved by the House, only to die in the Senate. Even when Harry Reid was majority leader, Pelosi used to regularly make complaints that "we've sent more than 400 bills to the Senate that they haven't acted upon, this session." Pelosi's record is a lot more impressive than Reid's or Obama's was, to put this another way.

Since Democrats lost the House majority, Pelosi has also been very admirable in keeping her caucus together in opposition to the worst of the Republican agenda. On key votes, Democrats usually speak with one voice. And she's been extremely crafty in using the divisions in the House Republican caucus to Democrats' advantage, throughout all the "fiscal cliff" and "government shutdown" budget negotiations. Since the GOP can't pass any of the budget bills on their own (due to Tea Party recalcitrance), Pelosi has managed to significantly rein in Republicans' budgetary dreams of slashing the safety net, for instance. She deserves a lot more credit than she usually gets for knowing how to use the levers of power -- even while in the minority.

But, of course, there's also a case to be made that perhaps it's now time to let someone else lead the House Democrats. The first case is one mentioned previously -- the need for some young blood high in the ranks of the Democratic leadership. Would Democrats do better to counter Paul Ryan by having someone of his own generation making the case to the press and to the public? Until Pelosi steps down, nobody knows that answer to that question. There are plenty of hungry up-and-comers in the House on the Democratic side of the aisle. Since Pelosi's been there for over a decade now, there has been time for others to groom their own protégés and consolidate their own power centers (which is necessary to be elected leader). After last year's election, Pelosi faced a leadership challenge from Tim Ryan of Ohio (who, incidentally, is only 43 years old), and she only survived with a vote of 134-63. She did so, in part, by opening up some of the House leadership jobs for younger Democrats, which is critical to boost the Democratic "bench" with some younger faces. Pelosi's not as old as some congressional Democrats (such as Feinstein), but the best thing for Democrats right now might be handing off power to a younger generation in a bigger way.

Some argue that Pelosi shouldn't have ignored tradition after the historic losses Democrats suffered in the 2010 midterms. When the Tea Party wave was at its highest point, Democrats lost a whopping 63 seats in the House. It's not hard and fast, but there is a tradition that congressional party leaders step down after such big losses. Pelosi ignored that tradition, and continued on as minority leader. If she had not, then Democrats would have had the chance to try out one (or more) other House leaders, in an effort to win their majority back. Since the low point of 2010, Democrats are doing better in the House, but they still have yet to wrest back control of the chamber. So the argument can be made that it's time to give someone else a chance at electing a Democratic majority.

The biggest argument against Pelosi staying is how potent a target she is for Republican candidates. Pelosi has been demonized for so long by the Republican Party that she is now almost the personification of "liberal, San Francisco values," with all the baggage that label can carry out in "flyover country." Most campaigns don't take it to the extreme that Karen Handel just did, but Pelosi's always been a convenient campaign tool for Republicans. As a result, her nationwide name recognition is quite high, but her negative approval rating is also pretty high. Handel ran one ad in her campaign that showed enthusiastic hippies in San Francisco praising Jon Ossoff, because Nancy Pelosi told them to. Progressives and liberals might laugh at how over-the-top the ad was, but in doing so they ignore how effective it turned out to be. If Pelosi sticks around as minority leader, it's a good bet that the exact same ad will be appearing in lots of House campaigns next year, with only the candidates' names changed. Why reinvent the wheel?

"San Francisco values" used to be code words for "gay" (or, at the very least, "supports the radical gay agenda"). Since gayness has really gone nationwide in a big way at this point, San Francisco values now mean "anything liberal that you hate." Just about any other Democratic leader wouldn't have that hung around their neck, but it works perfectly for Pelosi (who represents a San Francisco House district). Republicans could have a go at "New York City values" in reference to Chuck Schumer, but that's a weaker punch to begin with. Still, no matter where she's from, Nancy Pelosi is still the personification of all that is liberal to a whole lot of voters. Since Ossoff lost his election, Republican strategists have all be snidely sending tweets about how much they love Pelosi staying right where she is, because it makes their job so much easier. Snarky, but not without a grain of truth.

Replacing her as leader of the House Democrats would instantly remove all that rhetorical baggage. Republicans would have to begin making the attempt to demonize someone much less well-known (with low nationwide name recognition) and much less powerful than Pelosi used to be. And it'd be hard to use "San Francisco values" on someone from, say, the Midwest.

I can see both cases -- Pelosi staying or going -- with equal clarity. The case for forcing her out is almost purely a political one: Democrats would do better in next year's elections with someone new. The case for keeping her is more an institutional one: Pelosi is still doing a bang-up job of leading her caucus in the House. If Democrats elected a new leader with less experience in the Washington power game, it might mean Paul Ryan gets a lot more of what he wants in the next 18 months of budget battles. His dreams of obliterating the safety net would become a lot closer to reality without Pelosi at the negotiating table, perhaps.

Personally, I don't feel qualified to ask (or demand) that Nancy Pelosi step down from her leadership position, so I'm not going to do so. Whether she continues or not is entirely up to her, at this point. If she faces a leadership challenge, then perhaps I'll form a stronger opinion one way or the other. For now, though, I can understand Pelosi's position. She is still, to date, the highest-ranking female politician in all of American history. She sees an excellent chance next year for her to regain the gavel she had to give up to Paul Ryan over six years ago. That's mighty tempting, and mighty hard to walk away from. I also have to trust, at this point, that Pelosi herself is politically savvy enough (she's been in politics her entire life, after all) to realize that if it can be proven she'll be such a drag on the Democratic ticket as to put the possibly of regaining the majority at risk, that she'll voluntarily do the right thing and step down. But no matter when it happens, that decision is entirely up to her, at least for now.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

97 Comments on “Time For Nancy Pelosi To Go?”

  1. [1] 
    altohone wrote:

    YES!!!

    (I'm going to read your column now)

    A

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Ditto!!

    (Ditto)

  3. [3] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    Well, most of the money she raises and spreads around falls into the "part of the problem" category, so that isn't a positive in my mind.

    On the political spectrum, her San Francisco values are now out of touch with young voters, who want stronger action on climate change and green energy, who are far more supportive of Single Payer (a version of which has been in effect in San Francisco btw), less tolerant of the influence of Big Money in politics, and less tolerant of the attacks on privacy and net neutrality just to name a few. Pelosi and her SF values are no longer exactly radically liberal even if that image is still an effective tool in "conservative" districts.

    But the biggest problem is her public statements and media appearances.
    I don't want to come off as ageist, but she isn't nearly as quick witted as she used to be. She struggles to form coherent sentences and literally reminds me of Trump in that way. She gets frequent opportunities to offer 30 second sound bites, but just does not cover the issues effectively.
    If you were looking to hire a spokesperson for a new product, she would never get the job... and that's a big part of her job.

    I don't think the deference for institutional experience is merited either when the mood in the country has decidedly turned against those institutions... though her cat herding skills are indeed impressive. I would hope that she has passed those skills along by now.

    Finally, her statement today came across very poorly. I'm not sure she is entirely aware of what is actually best for the Dems, because she seemed to be putting her own interests first.

    Glad you brought up the subject CW.
    I would at least hope that a consensus can be reached that if Dems fail to regain the House in 17 months, she definitely has to go then.
    But I think it should happen sooner.

    I think a discussion about Perez is needed soon too.

    A

  4. [4] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    But the biggest problem is her public statements and media appearances.

    Indeed.

    I watched her interview on CNN's New Day with Chris Cuomo the other morning.

    He was trying to get her to acknowledge that Democrats need to change their strategy on healthcare but she was having none of it.

    Like most Democrats, she seems at a complete loss as to how to talk about the important issues, much less how to act on them, in ways that resonate with voters who care.

    But, I don't think she can be blamed for the Democrat losing the special election in Georgia.

  5. [5] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    To be sure, Democrats need new leadership.

    But, I wouldn't put too much stock in the "young blood" nature of that leadership.

    The Democrats don't need young blood as much as they need bold leaders with a vision for progressive change and the courage to carry it out and stand up to special interests.

    America seems at a point now where run-of-the-mill type leaders will only make bad situations worse. In the wake of the Trump era, however long that may last, it's going to take a wholly different kind of Democratic party and leadership to meet the challenges facing Americans and the rest of us out in the world.

  6. [6] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    Could you please release a response to Liz that disappeared under the Congress Considers Working for Once column?

    I think that's the title.

    Thanks

    A

  7. [7] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    pelosi may have high negatives, but she does a great job in the trenches. i think the best choice for democrats would be for her to serve out her term, and announce in august of 2018 that she will be stepping down as speaker at the start of the next term. generic democrats already poll quite well with voters, and without any specific face to target outside each district, attack ads against democratic congressional candidates may be both less effective and more expensive.

    JL

  8. [8] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW and gang

    Here we go again.
    Interview with a Human Rights Watch rep

    http://therealnews.com/t2/story:19386:US-Interrogates-Prisoners-at-UAE-Torture-Sites-in-Yemen

    Obama isn't mentioned, but the failure to prosecute our torturers is noted as an enabling force for the reoccurrence.

    A

  9. [9] 
    altohone wrote:

    Re comment 8

    Here's the AP story mentioned in the interview

    https://apnews.com/b2a5ecfd1adb442a86df5bd05bc6599e/Inside-Yemen's-secret-prisons:-'We-could-hear-the-screams'

    A

  10. [10] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    It doesn't matter who the Democrats have leading them, that person will be under constant attack by the Republicans. Simply put, Pelosi is a strong leader! I think she has done a great job, overall, and I do not think that there is anyone who could step up and keep the Dems in the House working together as well as Pelosi has.

    One of my favorite George W. Bush stories talked about how after Pelosi was made the Speaker of the House, Pres. Bush sent Pelosi's daughter a note saying how proud he was of her mom. He told her daughter that he had tried early in their careers to talk Pelosi into changing parties, but she would not. It was a sweet story that I use as a reminder that our politicians are still human beings, regardless of how their political personas may make me think otherwise!

  11. [11] 
    michale wrote:

    Overall, there's a case to be made for keeping Pelosi and a case to be made against her continuation of her leadership role. The case for her is easy to state: her experience, her leadership skills, and her funding prowess. Pelosi raises millions for the party and more millions for individual House members. This may sound crass, but that is indeed an asset for any party leader. It's also how Pelosi has so many loyalists in the House -- she's mentored and supported a whole lot of Democrats in their efforts to get elected, over the years. By doing so, she has built up a lot of loyalty.

    This is EXACTLY the conundrum that confuses me about ya'all...

    On the ONE hand, you decry and castigate big money in political campaigns..

    On the other hand, ya'all celebrate those who... you guessed it... bring big money into campaigns..

    Isn't that a tad inconsistent???

  12. [12] 
    michale wrote:

    On the other hand, ya'all celebrate those who... you guessed it... bring big money into campaigns..

    Isn't that a tad inconsistent???

    Credit where credit is due..

    My good buddy, Altohone, mentioned this issue above....

    :D

  13. [13] 
    michale wrote:

    You also forgot to mention the ever increasing incidents of indications of senility and dementia that Pelosi has experienced...

    She, and the Democrat Party, would be better served by her going out gracefully rather than collapsing and letting the march of the eons take her down...

    Personally, what is good for the Democrat Party is bad for the country so I hope Pelosi stays and fights tooth and nail to retain her leadership post..

    THAT can only benefit President Trump and the country...

  14. [14] 
    michale wrote:

    Democrats don't have a policy problem. They have a marketing problem.
    http://theweek.com/articles/707277/democrats-dont-have-policy-problem-have-marketing-problem

    This numbskull ^^^ is EXACTLY why Democrats continue to lose..

    "Our policies and platforms are great!!! We just need a better way to message them!!"
    -Democrats

    Keep thinking like that, Democrats.. You will continue to lose election after election after election...

  15. [15] 
    michale wrote:

    It should be clear to Democrats that the progressive message is not resonating with Independents or blue-collar workers — some of whom are within their base. And it is evident that Democrats still haven’t learned anything from the 2016 presidential election. They decided to stick with Pelosi as House minority leader and elected Tom Perez, whose rhetoric has marginalized non-progressives within his own party, as chair of the Democratic National Committee.

    Progressivism is ruining the Democratic Party. It will be interesting to watch how much damage it will do to the brand before the party recognizes that progressivism doesn’t resonate with the American people, not now, nor will it in 2018 and beyond.
    http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/national-party-news/338778-opinion-left-wing-politics-will-be-the-demise-of-the

    Yep, yep, yep..

    The problem is that the Democrat Party is all about giving the American people, not what the American people want, but rather what the Democrat Party THINKS the American people SHOULD have...

    And, with that attitude, the Dems will keep losing elections by close enough margins that Dems will think they can win the next one..

    But they never will...

    Many Americans may hate Trump, but many many MANY more Americans hate liberals and progressives...

  16. [16] 
    michale wrote:

    Of course, I use the term "hate" in the nicest way possible.. :D

  17. [17] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Altohone (3)- Michale (11)-
    I agree that the money she raises in a negative- not a positive.
    It doesn't matter who the Public Face of the party is as long as the party continues to have TWO faces.

  18. [18] 
    michale wrote:

    “You misunderstand completely. When was the last time an actor assassinated a president? I want to clarify: I’m not an actor. I lie for a living. However, it’s been a while and maybe it’s time.”
    -Johnny Depp

    What *IS* it about the Left Wingers that they think stating outright that assassinating a sitting president is a good idea??

  19. [19] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    It is long past time to purge the Big Money Democrats such as Pelosi from the party.
    Otherwise, get used to hearing more people singing this song:

    Well I heard some people talking just the other day
    and they said you're going to put me on the shelf.
    Well I got some news for you
    and you'll soon find out it's true
    and then you'll have to eat your lunch all by yourself.
    'Cause I'm already gone
    and I'm feeling strong.
    I will sing this victory song
    'Cause I'm already gone.

    -Eagles

  20. [20] 
    michale wrote:

    It doesn't matter who the Public Face of the party is as long as the party continues to have TWO faces.

    Oooo good one.. :D

  21. [21] 
    michale wrote:

    Russ,

    It doesn't matter who the Democrats have leading them, that person will be under constant attack by the Republicans.

    But Pelosi gives the GOP so much ammunition that she has DEMOCRATS agreeing with the GOP...

    THAT is a very hazardous position for the Dem Party to be in...

    It's what causes Democrats to lose lose lose since 2010....

  22. [22] 
    michale wrote:

    I say if Democrats want to keep San Fran Nan as the face of the Democrat Party, I whole-heartedly support that!!

    Anything to keep the Democrats losing is all right by me... :D

  23. [23] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    I say if Democrats want to keep San Fran Nan as the face of the Democrat Party, I whole-heartedly support that!!

    Anything to keep the Democrats losing is all right by me... :D

    For someone who is always blaming everyone, other than himself, for being a partisan hack, this comment would seem odd (if your accusations carried even the slightest bit of legitimacy to them, that is).

    Careful, your true self is shining through!

  24. [24] 
    michale wrote:

    For someone who is always blaming everyone, other than himself, for being a partisan hack, this comment would seem odd (if your accusations carried even the slightest bit of legitimacy to them, that is).

    Careful, your true self is shining through!

    Not at all.. I have no love for the GOP..

    It's simply a fact that there are only 2 Partys...

    And the Democrats are PROVEN lusers when it comes to governing..

    "You don't care about winning, but you don't want to lose"
    -THE EAGLES, After The Thrill Is Gone

    In other words, just because I want the Dems to lose, doesn't necessarily mean I want the GOP to win..

  25. [25] 
    michale wrote:

    In other news...

    JL et al,

    Supreme Court could reveal action on travel ban at any time

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has almost certainly decided what to do about President Donald Trump’s travel ban affecting citizens of six mostly Muslim countries.

    The country is waiting for the court to make its decision public about the biggest legal controversy in the first five months of Trump’s presidency. The issue has been tied up in the courts since Trump’s original order in January sparked widespread protests just days after he took office.

    The justices met Thursday morning for their last regularly scheduled private conference in June and probably took a vote about whether to let the Trump administration immediately enforce the ban and hear the administration’s appeal of lower court rulings blocking the ban.

    The court’s decision could come any time and is expected no later than late next week, after which the justices will scatter for speeches, teaching gigs and vacations.

    Exactly when could depend on whether there are justices who disagree with the outcome and want to say so publicly. It might take time for such an opinion to be written — and perhaps responded to by someone in the majority.
    https://apnews.com/4c6eb650752c4bdebb16bfe5857ad9fa

    Not too late to place yer bets.. :D

  26. [26] 
    michale wrote:

    The problem for the Democrat Party is that Pelosi *IS* the face of the Democrat Party..

    And the American people don't like what they see...

  27. [27] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    11

    This is EXACTLY the conundrum that confuses me about ya'all...

    On the ONE hand, you decry and castigate big money in political campaigns..

    On the other hand, ya'all celebrate those who... you guessed it... bring big money into campaigns..

    Wait, what? As I live and breathe, watch in absolute wonder as Michale discovers a FACT that seemingly never occurred to him... NOT everyone in a political Party thinks as a monolithic block... quite a conundrum to someone who seemingly thinks everything can simply be explained by a one-size-fits-all label.

    Isn't that a tad inconsistent???

    Welcome to the party, pal. It really doesn't even matter which Party you're discussing. People are inconsistent because the majority lives, learns, grows, and constantly changes by learning. On the other hand, never underestimate the utter nonsense, hypocrisy, and inconsistencies that people will justify in order to validate their outdated worldview.

  28. [28] 
    michale wrote:

    Wait, what? As I live and breathe, watch in absolute wonder as Michale discovers a FACT that seemingly never occurred to him... NOT everyone in a political Party thinks as a monolithic block... quite a conundrum to someone who seemingly thinks everything can simply be explained by a one-size-fits-all label.

    Which has NOTHING to do with the point I just made.. :D

    You would have a point if I was talking about two different groups within the same Party..

    But I am not.. I am talking about the SAME people who have these exact diametrically opposed attitudes..

    1. Big money in elections is BAD....

    2. We LOVE the leaders who bring Big Money to elections...

    THAT is the attitude of the near entirety of the Democrat Party...

  29. [29] 
    michale wrote:

    What it all boils down to is that, as a whole, the Democrat Party just pays lip service against Big Money in elections.

    Inside, the Democrat Party *LOVES* Big Money in elections...

    As long as it's the Democrat Party that gets the Big Money...

  30. [30] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Don,

    Very nice Eagles reference! It's one of my favourite bits.

  31. [31] 
    Aloysius McG wrote:

    As a political neophyte I appreciate reading the comments from you who are more learned and steeped in the culture. I am impressed by the comments and analysis of Steve Phillips in "Brown is the New White" (still reading) about the need for white progressives to not just assume that people of color will support Democrats. Real consideration and real power for POC were behind the Obama wins. Decreased turnout and decreased Clinton support by POC in 2016 seem to have been major factors in her loss.......as white progressives did not truly engage minorities.

    New Democratic leadership needs to be whole-heartedly behind cultural messaging and techniques, e.g., door to door contact and follow-up with individual voters on issues important to them rather than expensive generic television ads. Excellent minority candidates should be prized and cultivated. Phillips posits that the combination of POC and white voters is now a growing majority, and that the white swing voters are not absolutely necessary to win elections. I would appreciate the comments of my political "elders" here who have better post-vote information and more experience.

    Headwinds against progressives now are the structural favoritism for rural voters in the Congress and the Electoral College; Republican control of most of the governorships, statehouses and local boards and commissions with resultant gerrymandering and voter suppression; and a Republican advantage with dark money, co-ordinated public messaging and organizations such as ALEC. These will be difficult to buck.

  32. [32] 
    michale wrote:

    As a political neophyte I appreciate reading the comments from you who are more learned and steeped in the culture. I am impressed by the comments and analysis of Steve Phillips in "Brown is the New White" (still reading) about the need for white progressives to not just assume that people of color will support Democrats. Real consideration and real power for POC were behind the Obama wins. Decreased turnout and decreased Clinton support by POC in 2016 seem to have been major factors in her loss.......as white progressives did not truly engage minorities.

    The fact that the Democrat Party has to label various divisions of Americans is EXACTLY why the Democrat Party continues to lose elections..

    The GOP talks to AMERICANS

    The Democrat Party talks AT black Americans and poor Americans and hispanic Americans and asian Americans...

    Did it EVER occur to the Dem Party to talk TO Americans???

    No, it did not..

    And THAT is why the Dem Party has been devastated in the last few elections...

    Identity politics is ALL the Dems have in their playbook...

    And THAT is why the Dem Party will continue to lose...

  33. [33] 
    michale wrote:

    The problem is starkly obvious...

    The Dem Party needs Trump supporters to win elections..

    But the Dem Party can't talk to or about Trump supporters without insulting or attacking them...

    We see that here in Weigantia all the time...

    Here's a free clue for the Dem Party..

    If you want a person's vote.. Don't attack them or insult them..

  34. [34] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    What is POC?

  35. [35] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Here's a free clue for the Dem Party..If you want a person's vote.. Don't attack them or insult them..

    And, just to expand on that good advice ...

    Do understand them! And, do try to bring back the fine art of persuasion.

    That last bit won't be easy but, you know what they say about things that won't be easy ...

  36. [36] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    people of coolness :)

  37. [37] 
    michale wrote:

    What is POC?

    Person Of Color...

    One of those cutsey labels the Dems use to divide people..

    Do understand them! And, do try to bring back the fine art of persuasion.

    That last bit won't be easy but, you know what they say about things that won't be easy ...

    Troo dat....

  38. [38] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Aloysius McG,

    As a political neophyte I appreciate reading the comments from you who are more learned and steeped in the culture.

    Oh, have I got a link for you!

    As someone who understands the value of wise political analysis and hence your presence at CW.com, you will also be impressed by the analyses of William Bradley, a perfect compliment to Chris's assessments. Both are steeped in what make our world tick and both have beautiful writing styles.

    Bradley is a regular contributor at Huffington Post and his analysis on any number of issues is second to none. I hope you will check him out and I have provided a link below to his latest piece ...

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/brown-jumps-into-kaleidoscopic-new-world-politics_us_593cb58ae4b0b65670e56b33

  39. [39] 
    michale wrote:

    Bradley is a regular contributor at Huffington Post

    But don't hold that against him.. :D heh

  40. [40] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    You are right.

    If you are not a fan of HP and I'm not exactly enamoured with it - HP forced me to get a FB account which never worked to do what it was supposed to do and now I'm stuck with something I don't use and don't want, all of which still irks me to no end - you should not hold your predispositions about HP against William Bradley or against any other intelligent contributor there.

    Once again, it comes down to your own critical thinking skills and ability to sort out the nonsense from the astute political analysis.

  41. [41] 
    Aloysius McG wrote:

    Elizabeth Miller,

    Phillips mentions African-Americans, Latinos and Asian-Americans as the major groups among People Of Color. This is not to exclude or ignore sub-groups of these three, or other darker skinned or perhaps "other-appearing" Americans, e.g those of Arab descent. He divides the eligible electorate in 2013 into 23% Progressive People of Color, 28% Progressive Whites, 6% Other People of Color, and 43% Other Whites. This 51%of eligible voters who are Progressives is his "new majority" in America. With automatic voter registration, that majority would grow daily. Hence the Kris Kobachs of the Republican Party.

    He cites cultural insensitivity of "smart-ass white boys" within the Democratic Party as one reason the coalition failed to elect Clinton. This insensitivity, he says, is manifested in a policy of "color-blindness", which I believe is rightly perceived as a variant of white privilege.

  42. [42] 
    michale wrote:

    This insensitivity, he says, is manifested in a policy of "color-blindness", which I believe is rightly perceived as a variant of white privilege.

    Oh jeezus h christ!!!...

    "white privilege"... :^/

  43. [43] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    A McG,

    It sounds as though the political analyst you cite is a divider and therefore quite suspect in my mind.

  44. [44] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    I am suddenly reminded that the Washington Post has a new motto, Democracy Dies in Darkness. William Bradley has Let There Be Light.

    What motto should CW.com have in the Trump era?

  45. [45] 
    michale wrote:

    It sounds as though the political analyst you cite is a divider and therefore quite suspect in my mind.

    Exactly...

    It's the Dem Party doubling down on the same stoopid divisive strategy that has been resoundingly and utterly rejected by the American people in the last 4 elections..

    By all means, Dems... Continue with that..

  46. [46] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    ... maybe an addition to Reality-Based Political Commentary ...

  47. [47] 
    michale wrote:

    It's like 2014 and 2016 never happened!!

  48. [48] 
    michale wrote:

    What motto should CW.com have in the Trump era?

    How about:

    ARE YOU FRAKING KIDDING ME!!!???

    :D

  49. [49] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Lessons not learned.

  50. [50] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Heh.

    Seriously though, I'm going to start thinking up a motto to tack on to what's there now ...

  51. [51] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    I don't know, I think it could be turned around with some creativity. Living in San Francisco, the anti-San Francisco/Pelosi attack ad made the local news and of course the stereotypes used in the ad ridiculed. My though after seeing it: Ya, I would hate for San Francisco's extreme prosperity to rub off on your community (said with an ample splash of sarcasm...)

  52. [52] 
    michale wrote:

    Seriously though, I'm going to start thinking up a motto to tack on to what's there now ...

    But AYFKM has so many meanings, it's good for all situations!! :D

    Donald Trump Elected President..

    ARE YOU FRAKING KIDDING ME!!!???

    Democrats decide that it's a messaging issues..

    ARE YOU FRAKING KIDDING ME!!!???

    Democrats go with the same old identity politics that have lost them the last 4+4 elections..

    ARE YOU FRAKING KIDDING ME!!!???

    It's so apropos it's scary!! :D

  53. [53] 
    michale wrote:

    Ya, I would hate for San Francisco's extreme prosperity to rub off on your community

    Extreme prosperity for the few elite chosen ones...

    Data shows San Francisco has second highest homeless population in United States
    http://abc7news.com/news/data-shows-sf-has-2nd-highest-homeless-population-in-us/1407123/

    Living hell for the rest of Americans..

    Typical Democrat position...

  54. [54] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    michale ]52],

    True dat.

  55. [55] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    michale [53]

    The "elite chosen few" being 99,205 per 100,000 residents...

  56. [56] 
    michale wrote:

    CW...

    "{Rep Scalise's) whole job is to get people, convince Republicans to fucking kick people off fucking health care. I'm glad he got shot."
    -Democrat Party Official Phil Montag

    MDDOTW Award Nominee....

    Ya'all see??? People like this scumbag are the Democrat Party norm...

  57. [57] 
    michale wrote:

    Ya'all see??? People like this scumbag are the Democrat Party norm...

    Or if not the norm, at least plentiful enough that they need to be acknowledged and dealt with, not swept under the rug...

  58. [58] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    The fact that the Democrat Party has to label various divisions of Americans is EXACTLY why the Democrat Party continues to lose elections..The GOP talks to AMERICANS

    Be sure when you say that out loud, Mike, to give that last word a rolling, western flavor like Gen. Curtis LeMay and Lyndon Johnson used to.. AMurrrrrikins.

    McG [31]: Phillips posits that... white swing voters are not absolutely necessary to win elections. Headwinds against progressives...will be difficult to buck.

    You certainly wouldn't have read that before Obama came along and changed the math. A generation earlier, after Reagan's 1984 landslide, one of the magazines had a cover, "The Death of Liberalism".

    Yet, just a little more than year ago, one writer was speculating, "Can the GOP ever win a national election again?", citing the same sorts of demographic data to make his case.

    The problem is, Washington is a lot like Hollywood in the sense that big money investors don't particularly like to put their bets on unproven properties, and simultaneously chase fads and trends like tweens. The DC press, like the Hollywood press, breathlessly reports every surprise win or loss as a harbinger of MAJOR CHANGE, and rushes to cover it, often at the expense of some other, much more important developments. In other words, it's cyclic, as familiar to Brittany Spears as it is to Donald Trump.

    No surprise, then, that Trump's political circus includes a couple of former Hollywood movie producers (Bannon and Mnuchin, aka 'the Steves') who have surfed the fickle waters of American taste-making. Mnuchin was just coming off the (surprise) success of "Suicide Squad", prior to being tapped to run the Treasury. So it goes.

    One thing you have to say about Trump, he played the media like an ocean fish on a hook. Like fanboys chasing a Tarantino high, the media fixated on the novelty of his campaign and couldn't look away. Two billion dollars' worth of free press coverage for Trump later, Bernie got the tweens, er, press to look in his direction for a hot minute, but when he was unable to best Hillary in key primaries, he faded like One Direction.

    Remember when Hillary mopped the floor with Trump in the first debate? Probably not: it was overshadowed by the Access Hollywood Tapes release (finally, some SEX! thought the press). And so it goes.

    Trump, for one, understands all this, that the fickle finger of fate points always to the ascendant, and to the novel. I suspect that his obsession with 'winning' is in no small part born of an innate understanding that 'losers' are swept from the stage as quickly as old flames from a newlywed's photo album.

    So does Pelosi, who has her position not because she's sexy and new, but rather because she's smart and effective, even as a minority leader. She's seen political dilettantes come and go. She recently advised her caucus to cool the talk about impeachment, and to let the process work itself out. In the end, she says, Trump isn't immune from political gravity, or the hazards of making careless statements and decisions. "We should all step back and take a deep breath", she told the audience of the View.

    Good and wise advice, I think, whether applied to Trump's future or Pelosi's.

  59. [59] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    28

    You would have a point if I was talking about two different groups within the same Party..

    Oh, I would have a point if you were talking about "two different groups"... *LOL*... Your hair-splitting exercise is back front and center; watch out now, the admission that there might be two whole different groups is a lot to burden your mind with so the FACT that there are multiple different groups all across the country is the kind of news that could downright make your head explode... that is, if you were a person inclined to incessantly paint a diverse group of people with a broad brush.

    But I am not.. I am talking about the SAME people who have these exact diametrically opposed attitudes..

    1. Big money in elections is BAD....

    2. We LOVE the leaders who bring Big Money to elections...

    Oh, come on. Who actually does this? Name one. The fact is, you hear one person say something and you lump everyone into the same category regardless their actual beliefs.

    THAT is the attitude of the near entirety of the Democrat Party...

    No, it isn't... that's you and your lumping, and who here couldn't have seen that coming? I got news for you... hold onto your head so it doesn't 'splode... there are multiple diverse beliefs among a multitude of different people on both the "left" and "right" all across America. Your "one-size-fits-all-the-Left-Wingery" rhetoric is because you take what anyone says and basically then assign it to everyone. Then you slap your label on them and insist the "entirety" or "near entirety" fits your description... which the majority of the time couldn't be further from the FACTS. :)

  60. [60] 
    michale wrote:

    Oh, come on. Who actually does this? Name one. The fact is, you hear one person say something and you lump everyone into the same category regardless their actual beliefs.

    Practically everyone here has decried Big Money in elections..

    And those same someones have applauded when candidates have... you guessed it.... raised big money for their elections...

    In this very commentary, CW has stated that one of Pelosi's biggest advantages is she can.... wait for it.... wait for it... raise BIG MONEY for elections..

    Yet, CW is also on record as decrying CITIZENS UNITED for... guess where I am going with this??.... putting BIG MONEY in elections...

    And CW isn't the only one.. Practically everyone here has decried and castigated the CITIZENS UNITED ruling because it puts big money in elections.. And those SAME people (there are exceptions, ya'all know who you are) have also touted the fundraising prowess of Democrats who outrais'ed Republicans in..... {pause for dramatic effect}....big money for ELECTIONS!!!

    So, please spare me the innocent "Who, us???" bullshit...

  61. [61] 
    michale wrote:

    So does Pelosi, who has her position not because she's sexy and new, but rather because she's smart and effective, even as a minority leader.

    And yet, HOW many elections have the Dems lost under Pelosi??

    Who am I to believe??? Your biased opinion??

    Or the facts and reality???

    Oh gee... lemme think..... :^/

    But hay... I completely agree with you!! Pelosi SHOULD stay...

    She is COMPLETELY competent and effective...

    FOR REPUBLICANS!!! :D

  62. [62] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    And yet, HOW many elections have the Dems lost under Pelosi?

    "under Pelosi?" You make it sound as if she's pulling all the strings in the Democratic Party, not spending her time keeping her caucus in the House unified.

    Clue: Pelosi has nothing to do with it.

    The Republicans are beating up Pelosi right now because they need a villain for their faithful to boo at (because outrage is the Republican equivalent of 'hope'), and with Hillary off the stage, she's the closest they can find.

  63. [63] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Practically everyone here has decried Big Money in elections..And those same someones have applauded when candidates have...raised big money for their elections...

    It should be stunningly obvious that Democrats have to play the hand that's been dealt to them.

    Democrats have tried and tried to get laws passed that would attempt to get big money out of politics, but billionaires have always found a way to get around those laws, whether through PACs or through bogus non-profits running 'issues' ads that attack candidates without naming them directly.

    The whole point of the Citizens United Case was whether a movie attacking Hillary was merely the equivalent of a long attack ad, or a piece of art protected by the first amendment. SCOTUS sided with the latter interpretation, smashing the legal foundations of most campaign finance laws to bits in the process.

    So we raise the money we need, not because we WANT to but because we HAVE to, to stay competitive.

    Which is why I'm always saying to my friends on the left, I'll listen to your complaints about too much money in politics when you come up with a way to make it stick to both parties, and to every outside group as well, and can pass muster in the SCOTUS.

    Until then, cash is speech, baby, and we're going to have to make sure that GOP billionaires don't have the only megaphone in the room.

  64. [64] 
    altohone wrote:

    Aloysius McG
    41

    By all means, read Bradley.
    But then read some Max Blumenthal.

    And if you find yourself agreeing with everything they say, or disagreeing with everything they say, add a new source.

    It's difficult to understand the establishment if you don't read their media, and it's difficult to see when they're wrong if you only read their media.

    I think it's important to remember that the "liberal" media has printed lies about and supported every war, and they attacked the most popular politician on the left in the country by lying about him too.

    The six corporations who own over 80% of the media in this country (print, radio, tv, cable, internet) are not afraid to use that power to advance agendas that serve their interests and harm yours.

    The owner of the Washington Post recently signed a $600,000,000 contract to provide services to the CIA, and they don't disclose the potential conflicts when they report on the CIA.

    The NYT held the story on unconstitutional domestic spying for a whole year (until after Bush was reelected), printed countless lies about WMD's in Iraq, and downplayed the massive frauds on Wall Street that caused the Great Recession (just for a few examples).

    You don't have to read Chomsky's Manufacturing Consent, but I would recommend at least reading the Wikipedia entry and trying to understand the concept.

    A

  65. [65] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    60

    Practically everyone here has decried Big Money in elections..

    Cite? It's simply semantics. The same people who "decried Big Money" in elections don't mind one whit about the big money from labor unions. It's a non-issue kind of issue because a Republican's Super PAC is a Democrat's labor union.

    In this very commentary, CW has stated that one of Pelosi's biggest advantages is she can.... wait for it.... wait for it... raise BIG MONEY for elections..

    Yet, CW is also on record as decrying CITIZENS UNITED for... guess where I am going with this??.... putting BIG MONEY in elections...

    Oh, I see the problem. You are conflating CW's recognition of Pelosi's ability to raise money for the Democratic Party as CW also being in agreement with the decision of the majority of the Supreme Court in their 5-4 decision in Citizens United v. FEC in 2010 wherein wealthy individuals can circumvent our campaign finance laws by giving unlimited contributions to single-candidate super PACs while individuals are limited to a maximum $5,200 donation made directly to a candidate. Pelosi's fundraising ability precedes that ruling by multiple decades and has nothing whatsoever to do with the rule change by the SCOTUS that allows dark money and foreign contributions to influence American democracy.

    And CW isn't the only one.. Practically everyone here has decried and castigated the CITIZENS UNITED ruling because it puts big money in elections.. And those SAME people (there are exceptions, ya'all know who you are) have also touted the fundraising prowess of Democrats who outrais'ed Republicans in..... {pause for dramatic effect}....big money for ELECTIONS!!!

    You should educate yourself and not conflate someone recognizing a person's fundraising prowess spanning several and multiple decades with the recent 2010 decision that effectively allows unlimited dark money and foreign funds being interjected into the United States. :)

    So, please spare me the innocent "Who, us???" bullshit...

    "Spare me"? *LOL* As I have said many times, I will speak freely. If you can't handle the truth or my opinion, as the case may be, you are free to crawl into your safe space and spare yourself. :)

  66. [66] 
    michale wrote:

    Cite? It's simply semantics. The same people who "decried Big Money" in elections don't mind one whit about the big money from labor unions. It's a non-issue kind of issue because a Republican's Super PAC is a Democrat's labor union.

    OK... OK...

    We'll put it out for anyone who DOESN'T want to concede my point...

    Is there anyone here who think Big Money in elections is A-OK acceptable??

    Anyone??? Anyone at all.... :D

    Kick, my dear.. You will get 1000 quatloos for every one who says that BIG MONEY in elections is perfectly acceptable.. :D

  67. [67] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, busy busy busy (it's Friday...) but a couple things:

    altohone -

    Your comment has been freed from the filter.

    LizM -

    Change the motto? Well, here are the quotes that have been running through my mind since Trump was elected:

    "Our president's crazy, did you hear what he said?"
    -Talking Heads, "Making Flippy Floppy"

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."
    -Hunter S. Thompson

    "Did IQs just drop sharply while I was away?"
    -Ellen Ripley, from "Aliens"

    Heh.

    Gotta run, big column to write...

    -CW

  68. [68] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    We'll put it out for anyone who DOESN'T want to concede my point..

    Aside from your cry of 'hypocrisy' when confronted with the fact that Democrats raise money (and both Kick and I have explained exhaustively WHY that is), I don't see a point. As Kick said, "It's a non-issue kind of issue" except for the folks on the far left, who would have us run the democratic half of the election on coupons, or somesuch.

    How do YOU view money in politics? Are you satisfied that 'little guys' like you are represented in Republican politics, or do you sometimes get the sneaking suspicion that you're little more than a human shield for billionaires who want tax breaks?

  69. [69] 
    Kick wrote:

    Balthasar
    62

    "under Pelosi?" You make it sound as if she's pulling all the strings in the Democratic Party, not spending her time keeping her caucus in the House unified.

    I know, right?

    Clue: Pelosi has nothing to do with it.

    They do require a bogeyman. Their best bogeyman lately usually is a woman and bonus points if it's a black woman like Loretta Lynch or... Oh... Susan Rice. See, the problem with the "Right Wingery" and their ilk is that they are actually under the mistaken impression that they don't play "identity politics," but that's simply because in their ignorance they don't realize that Republicans and their ilk actually play the purest form of identity politics and have been doing so since Richard Nixon made an extremely successful play for the white resentment vote against civil rights activists. They flat out don't recognize their playing of identity politics because there's still a sense that "white" is not actually the Caucasian race and "male" is not actually a gender, but anyone with two brain cells to rub together knows that they are. So Republicans and their ilk playing that "straight white Christian male victim" identity politics simply lack a sense of self-awareness. :)

    The Republicans are beating up Pelosi right now because they need a villain for their faithful to boo at (because outrage is the Republican equivalent of 'hope'), and with Hillary off the stage, she's the closest they can find.

    And remove Nancy Pelosi, and they'll find yet another bogeyman... or most likely woman... like Elizabeth Warren because "straight white male victim" identity politics really is a thing these days... now more than ever.

  70. [70] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Possible new motto:

    "Anything can be a dildo if you are brave enough."
    -Abe Lincoln

    (Found this little gem in an article discussing how articles will use misquoted statements without bothering to fact-check them first.)

  71. [71] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey gang

    Here's an interview with investigative reporter Greg Palast about how the Koch brothers influenced the election outcome...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BUSTTkhiZUI&list=PLNAlnQ4hvLtTAJcIEcfvfHbMv2omP_rHC&index=4

    ... and why nobody is talking about it.

    A

  72. [72] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    Thanks for freeing that comment to Liz.

    Did I use a word on the naughty list?

    A

  73. [73] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    66

    We'll put it out for anyone who DOESN'T want to concede my point...

    You're wasting your time because it's a moot point. The same people that will decry "big money" in politics will welcome large sums of money interjected into politics by labor unions and not bat an eye. It's semantics.

    Is there anyone here who think Big Money in elections is A-OK acceptable??

    But conflating a politician like Nancy Pelosi's ability to raise funds for her Party which she has been doing long before the 2010 Citizens United decision with the interjection of dark money and laundered foreign money being illegally funneled into what is supposed to be our American democracy is altogether two different things.

    Kick, my dear.. You will get 1000 quatloos for every one who says that BIG MONEY in elections is perfectly acceptable.. :D

    Cut off from quatloos from the big domestic banks and Americans not interested in losing their money to a guy widely known for stiffing contractors and NOT paying his bills, Benedict Donald had to do business with people of decidedly sketchier reputations. Those sketchy people, often looking for places to park their quatloos in real estate, had to accept much higher levels of risk than people with less sketchier reputations, and that was a path that led them to Traitor Trump.

    Patriots have no need of quatloos. Class dismissed. :)

  74. [74] 
    altohone wrote:

    Balthy, Kick, Don

    Utter nonsense on the Big Money stuff.

    Democrats decried Citizens United, and for good reason.

    Even Big Money Dems like Hillary paid lip service to it, and then raised Big Money without regard to the consequences.

    The alternative IS NOT unilateral disarmament, it's raising the money in a different manner.

    And the bullspit about unions being the same as superpacs is establishment nonsense.
    Not only are they outspent 10 to 1, the union money actually represent hundreds of thousands of small donor workers, not a handful of rich donors.
    Even before CU, the comparison wasn't valid.

    The establishment Democrats who support and defend the influence of Big Money in our elections are the same ones who refuse to enact the policies favored by the majority at the behest of those Big Money donors... the same ones who are responsible for the decimation of the Democratic party due to the loss of voter support BECAUSE they refuse to support policies favored by the majority.
    You are both defending the legalized corruption of our democracy and both major parties.

    It's not rocket surgery, and just because a hypocritical trumpling is calling you out on it, it doesn't make you right.

    A

  75. [75] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Balthasar (63)-
    You will not listen when someone comes up with a way to stick it to both parties, to outside groups and can pass muster with SCOTUS.
    When you asked for it in the comments from "Deserved or not, Georgia House race..." I responded with exactly what you asked for in comment 37.
    You ignored it.
    You are either completely suckered by the Big Money Democratic establishment or complicit in the deceit to continue to make these false claims that no such alternative exists.
    But that is the whole shtick of the Big Money Democratic argument- there are no alternatives other than the Republicans. For you to admit that there are alternatives destroys the only argument that Big Money Democrats have to deceive and frighten citizens.

  76. [76] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Altohone (74)-
    Not sure why I was lumped in with Balthy and Kick. I have never defended Big Money Democrats.
    And as referred to in comment 75, I have proposed an alternate source of funding- not disarmament.

  77. [77] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Altohone-
    By the way Rocket Surgery?
    Are you Dr. McCoy?

  78. [78] 
    michale wrote:

    Balthy,

    Aside from your cry of 'hypocrisy' when confronted with the fact that Democrats raise money

    If we were talking about Democrats raising money, you would have a point.

    But we're not, so you don't..

    But I have to admire the way you created a totally different strawman argument and then really kicked the shit out of it..

    Good one.. :D

  79. [79] 
    michale wrote:

    Kick,

    The same people that will decry "big money" in politics will welcome large sums of money interjected into politics by labor unions and not bat an eye.

    Uh yea... That's what *I* said... :^/

    You're wasting your time because it's a moot point.

    No, it's not a moot point, it's my EXACT point...

    And the point is, is that it's pure, blatant, unadulterated hypocrisy...

    You are either FOR big money in politics/elections or you are AGAINST big money in politics/elections...

    I am really surprised I have to explain this stuff.. :^/

  80. [80] 
    Kick wrote:

    A01
    74

    Utter nonsense on the Big Money stuff.

    Democrats decried Citizens United, and for good reason.

    State the obvious, Punk. Not a single one of us claimed otherwise... quite the contrary if you read our posts... and certainly not Don, for Heaven's sake, he is as pure as the driven snow... mostly. People on both sides of the political aisle have decried Citizens United, obviously, but it's still here... so!

    Even Big Money Dems like Hillary paid lip service to it, and then raised Big Money without regard to the consequences.

    Oh, come on. Haven't we already covered this "purity test," unilateral disarmament, and money semantics stuff ad nauseam? Do we seriously need to cover the same ground wherein I quote Saint Bernard Sanders from his Hollywood fundraiser saying not all rich people are evildoers as he pockets their big money? You want to again rehash the millions of dollars Saint Bern took from NNU while whining about big money influence in our politics or Bern and his wife owning 3 homes while traversing colleges in the North whining about millionaires? Use the search feature; it's all still there.

    Something new we could talk about would be Saint Bernard and Mrs. Saint being investigated by the FBI for fraud for about a year now. No worries, though, it happens to all the major Party candidates these days.

    And the bullspit about unions being the same as superpacs is establishment nonsense.

    Oh, come on, Punk. No one claimed they were the same, just that they're both "big money" by two different names... semantics.

    Not only are they outspent 10 to 1, the union money actually represent hundreds of thousands of small donor workers, not a handful of rich donors.

    The unions don't count as big money because their money comes from poor collective Dems. Oh, Lordy! Google Dustin Moskovitz, Cari Tuna, Tom Steyer and get back to me. There are many more millionaire/billionaire individual Democratic donors that give to the DNC through bundlers and Super PACs, and unions who now work in unison with Super PACs of the millionaire/billionaire donors.

    This DNC bundled money from various assorted and varied named and unnamed rich Democrats through SPs and poor employees as well as rich employees via labor unions is EXACTLY why Bernie ran as a Democrat in order to tap into the kind of funds he would need if he had become the nominee. Use your noodle and don't fall for the utter hypocrisy of the "purity test" nonsense. A true purist wouldn't have run against the establishment within the establishment's committee, trying to maneuver a hostile takeover in order to get access to the establishment's cash in order to claim the prize in DC.

    Review [63], [86], [97]

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2017/05/05/ftp435/#comment-99432

    Remember the famous words of Bernie as he began his attempted hostile takeover of the DNC... an anti-establishment candidate who is not, never was, and at this point never will be a Democrat:

    “To run as an independent, you need — you could be a billionaire. If you're a billionaire, you can do that. I'm not a billionaire. So the structure of American politics today is such that I thought the right ethic was to run within the Democratic Party.”

    Are you even today still under the misguided impression that Bernie Sanders decided it was necessary for him to crash the DNC Party because he needed all those small donor dollars of the establishment? As Michale would say... Jesus H. Christ. Bernie and Trump crashed the respective parties because they required the monetary structure, etc. of a major political party.

    Timeout for Trivia: When was the last time an Independent won the presidency? I will give you a hint: The city located in the District of Columbia is named after him. I thought you would like that one, being a Punk from around there. ;)

    The establishment Democrats who support and defend the influence of Big Money in our elections are the same ones who refuse to enact the policies favored by the majority at the behest of those Big Money donors... the same ones who are responsible for the decimation of the Democratic party due to the loss of voter support BECAUSE they refuse to support policies favored by the majority.

    The same establishment Democrats that Bernie Sanders would have gladly used their money in order to buy the right to make policy in that capital named after Americas only Independent president because he knew damn well it was the only way he was going to garner the big prize. Bernie ran against the establishment within the establishment, and now all his little minions want to whine and cry about him being a true Democrat.

    It's not rocket surgery, and just because a hypocritical trumpling is calling you out on it, it doesn't make you right.

    The singular reason that Berners are still riding mighty high and preaching "purity" is because Bernie failed to crash the Party and gain access to the cash he would have not only needed but would have gladly taken. Clue in already, Punk. It's the height of hypocrisy to whine about big money when your candidate needed it, pursued it, and would have gladly accepted it if only he had been able to successfully crash the Party he spent decades claiming to loathe.

    You know what they say: If you can't beat them, join them and try to beat them from within. If you still can't beat them from within, unjoin them, explain you never really belonged anyway, claim moral superiority and berate them at every opportunity, and vow to crash them again in the future.

    And STILL, I would have voted for Bernie every day of the week over Benedict Donald. :)

  81. [81] 
    altohone wrote:

    Don
    76, 77

    You were included due to your likely interest as someone disputing the bullspit, not as a supporter of it.

    This isn't rocket science.
    This isn't brain surgery.
    This isn't rocket surgery... a play on words combining the two common phrases for the humorous effect.

    It is commonly used in my circle of friends, but apparently not widely.
    Not Star Trek related.

    A

  82. [82] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    79

    Uh yea... That's what *I* said... :^/

    Not even close, snowball. You claimed Democrats took both sides of the issue while I claimed it's a fake issue... moot point... to be exact.

    No, it's not a moot point, it's my EXACT point...

    Nope... not even close, dear, sweetie, sugar. ;)

    And the point is, is that it's pure, blatant, unadulterated hypocrisy...

    You are either FOR big money in politics/elections or you are AGAINST big money in politics/elections...

    Wrong. You claim you support a candidate because that candidate is against "big money in politics" only none of them are really against it because it's ever present, and the only reason to crash the big Parties is to gain access to it because you know darned well you can't really win without it. Did you ever wonder why the RNC announced Treason Weasel was the RNC candidate BEFORE he actually secured the requisite number of delegates to secure the Republican nomination? Follow the laundered quatloos.

    I am really surprised I have to explain this stuff.. :^/

    I am really surprised you think you could ever come close to actually doing that, honey boo boo. ;p

    DISCLAIMER: Margarita

  83. [83] 
    altohone wrote:

    Kick
    80

    I wish I knew what happened to you in the last few weeks.

    "but it's still here... so!"

    So what exactly?
    Dems have to deny the corrupting influence of Big Money in order to be competitive, and their defenders have to cover for them?

    The difference between Big Money and big money is not just semantic.
    The source and purpose matters.

    The rest of your comment is eerily reminiscent of the falsehoods the corporate media collaborators of the establishment peddles.
    And it's nearly solely attacks on Bernie in order to avoid the topic under discussion.
    I counted four outright lies, six straw man arguments, and a whole lot of unsubstantiated assertions.

    There's a reason I mock the trumpling and only use him when it suits a purpose.

    Like him, you aren't engaging in a productive, honest debate the way you used to. No thanks.

    A

  84. [84] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Don [75] I responded with exactly what you asked for

    Not really, because your argument is based on a faulty premise and bad math.

    Your premise, if I read it correctly, is that if enough folks - up to 20% of the population (more than 2500% of all the people who donated to all political parties in 2016) - were to overwhelm the system with small donations to candidates who would only accept small donations, that politicians of every political persuasion would then see the error of depending on big donors, and change their evil ways. Have I got that right?

    There are several flaws in that argument, not the least of which is that the vast majority of donations to political parties are already given in amounts under $200. Only about 0.53% percent of donors give more than $200, but that equaled 67.8% of the total dollar amount donated last year.

    Source: OpenSecrets.org: donor demographics

    To recap: over 99% of all donations currently collected on all sides of the aisle are already under $200, but equal only 32.2% of the total amount raised.

    So a movement to increase the number of small dollar donations wouldn't change very much, unless accompanied by a law limiting all donations from all individual donors to Campaigns, PACs, and all other political groups to less than $200.

    Then there's the question of Dark Money. PACs and SuperPACs aren't required to disclose their donors, so we have no idea who almost 30% of those donors are. Some could come from Russia or from the Pedophiles Union. We don't know. Democrats are ready and willing to throw their books open. Republicans, not so much - actually, not at all.

    More and more that's seeming like a National Security issue as well, but I digress.

    And none of that broaches the estimated 2 billion dollars worth of free media given to the Trump campaign in the last election, and we can't yet begin to estimate the dollar value to the Trump and Sanders campaigns of Putin's disinformation and hacking campaign against Hillary, but we know it wasn't done on the cheap.

    In otherwords, the problem with your plan is that it wouldn't work because it would a) not account for all of the money flowing into the campaigns, nor the value of intangible aid from outside sources, and b) not dissuade either party from continuing to solicit big-ticket donations without the threat of legal sanctions, which would be impossible to get enacted into law.

    The practical alternative is to work to get enough Democrats and liberal independents elected to the congress to get around Citizens by enacting carefully crafted, constitutionally defensible transparency laws that open the books of all parties, enabling citizens to confront their politicians with questions like "why are you taking money from the Pedophiles Union?" That still wouldn't prevent a billionaire from embarking on a 'self funded' campaign, but might at least keep the shadiest characters out.

    That still leaves the 'intangibles' question open, because I'm not sure that there's any way that you could practically or constitutionally prevent the media, for instance, from paying more attention to one candidate than another, or to get a governor not to pass state election laws that effectively favor one party over another. And those are just the benign examples. Certainly, greater cyber-security for our election systems are a must, regardless of whatever else we do.

  85. [85] 
    michale wrote:

    No, it's not a moot point, it's my EXACT point...

    Nope... not even close, dear, sweetie, sugar. ;)

    Sorry, honey pie.. I think I know better than you what my point was..

    And it was, and is, the fact that ya'all decry big money in elections while at the same time applauding.... yep... big money in elections...

    You don't mind big money in elections if it pushes an agenda you approve of...

    You just don't like big money when your opponents use it...

    That's hypocrisy, dearest.. :D

  86. [86] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Balthasar-
    Nice try.
    But you are not reading the premise right.
    It is not the small contributions from the 20% that will make the difference- it's the votes.
    And no, 20% of the voters making this commitment to only vote for small contribution candidates will not make all the politicians suddenly decide to forego the Big Money.
    But it will enable 10-50 small contribution candidates to win in 2018, which will inspire more people to participate in 2020 which will enable more small contribution candidates to win in 2020 and this will inspire more people participate in each subsequent election reaching the point when a majority of citizens are participating and the majority of congressional districts have competitive small contribution candidates.
    The flaw with your approach is that it also has an IF. IF you somehow get the Big Money legislators to pass the laws you want that bite the hands that feed them. None of those laws will be passed or implemented by 2020- much less 2018.
    The difference is that your approach has been tried and has failed miserably every time. My approach has not been tried.
    And your statistics actually prove my point. If 20% of citizens making small contributions is a 2500% increase in the amount of people making contributions that shows that not enough people are making contributions.
    And they don't make those contributions because they don't feel it would make a difference when given to candidates that are also taking the Big Money.
    You even admit that it would be impossible for the legal sanctions that would prevent the Current Major Parties to solicit the Big Money contributions enacted into law.
    Then you turn right around and say the solution is to elect Democrats and liberal independents to pass laws that you say cannot be enacted.
    The bottom line is that you can't pass the laws to elect the people to pass the laws needed to be able to elect those people without electing them first. And then you wouldn't need to pass those laws.
    That is why my approach can work because it can be implemented under existing law. And it uses the tools provided by our founding fathers for enforcement- the votes. It says the American citizens can influence and change our government instead of the defeatist attitude that we need the government to pass laws to protect us because we can't do it ourselves.
    And it's not the value of the individual contribution that matters- it's the aggregate contributions per individual to a candidate.
    For example, the average contribution to Bernie's campaign has been reported as 27 dollars.
    If someone contributed 2000 dollars to Bernie's campaign and then made 100 seven dollar contributions the average contribution would be about 27 dollars. But the aggregate contribution from that individual would be 2700 dollars.

  87. [87] 
    Kick wrote:

    A01
    83

    So what exactly?
    Dems have to deny the corrupting influence of Big Money in order to be competitive, and their defenders have to cover for them?

    Oh, come on. No one claimed anyone has to deny the corrupting influence of big money on any candidate of any Party, but it'd be a hell of a good start if the my-way-or-the-highway types on the fringes of the Parties stopped referring to those who supported anyone NOT their candidate as "establishment," "defenders," or any of the various assorted cutesy names you have for people who for many reasons cannot or will not fit into your boxes of "purity." And really, Punk, "establishment"? Nothing says "buck the establishment" quite like backing a septuagenarian who has spent 25+ years serving in Congress and just as long serving his own special interests and taking big money himself.

    Democrats are an extremely diverse group which makes "unity" a challenge. Even still, I happen to think there's not really too much that divides them aside from the rhetoric, sweeping generalizations, and stereotypes spewed by the media and others about any group of people, regardless of their political persuasion or preferred candidate. If you insist on running against the "establishment," find you someone who is not the epitome of the word and run that candidate. It just makes common sense to me that Democrats need to take on the primary role of influencing and reviving the Party going forward. I continue to think there is a Democrat amongst them with a progressive vision who can be identified to lead that Party. :)

    The rest of your comment is eerily reminiscent of the falsehoods the corporate media collaborators of the establishment peddles.

    "Collaborators of the establishment" blah, blah, blah. If you succeed at overtaking the "establishment," you become the "establishment"... been there, done that. If you insist on the labels going forward, please find a candidate who isn't the living embodiment of them. I did say "please." :)

    And it's nearly solely attacks on Bernie in order to avoid the topic under discussion.

    The financial "purity" topic ain't that complicated. It's easy to preach but really a non-issue type "issue." Everyone takes "big money." They simply learn to define their "big money" as "good big money" and the opposition's "big money" as "bad big money." Big money from the unions isn't just poor people. I can assure you that NOT everyone with a large bank account has a nefarious agenda and that some of those with smaller bank accounts actually do. Had Bernie succeeded in winning the nomination, he would have been the beneficiary of everything he claims to loathe, and that wasn't by accident but by design.

    I counted four outright lies, six straw man arguments, and a whole lot of unsubstantiated assertions.

    But enough about Bernie; while they were busy placing him atop the purity pedestal, it would have been instructive to factor in the fact he's an establishment pol with a long history spent planting his flag and expecting that someday in the future everyone would see he was right. Bernie has a history including some things you don't know and may never have to find out because he's quite frankly burnt toast. Moving forward now.

    There's a reason I mock the trumpling and only use him when it suits a purpose.

    Mocking is your thing, and you naturally think yours is the only relevant "higher" purpose, but contrary to making you different, you achieve that horseshoe effect of Jean-Pierre Faye wherein those on the far ends... rather than being at opposing ends of the political horseshoe... in fact closely resemble one another.

    Like him, you aren't engaging in a productive, honest debate the way you used to. No thanks.

    What can I say? We "unworthy" centrists naturally become so less "engaging" and "productive" when we refuse to be tools of either the left or right fringes. From where I sit, that's neither new nor the least bit unexpected. :)

  88. [88] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Kick-
    How is referring to those that refuse to support Big Money candidates as purists different from referring to those supporting and defending the establishment Big Money candidates as establishment and defenders?
    Everybody takes Big Money and learns to view their Big Money as good and the other sides as bad.
    You can call that a reason if you want- but it is still just an excuse.
    As pointed out in comment 86 it's the votes that make the difference.
    If you keep voting for Big Money candidates you will continue to get Big Money legislators and candidates.
    Why is demanding that candidates be small contribution candidates any different than demanding that they support any other issues?
    Please also note how I pointed out the flaw in the Bernie small contribution tale. Even though he did not meet my requirements I still voted for him (and Jill Stein) because they were close enough to my requirements.
    Not the actions of a purist. But not a tool of the Big Money establishment "centrists" either.

  89. [89] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    78, 85

    Oh, come on. Your argument against Balthy is comical... good for a nice laugh:

    If we were talking about Democrats raising money, you would have a point.

    But we're not, so you don't..

    Actually, Balthy is correct. The original premise of YOURS was that "we" -- "ya'all" -- were hypocrites for praising Nancy Pelosi's ability to raise money, and last time I checked she was indeed still a Democrat. Your attempt to move the goalposts fails... yet again and as per usual.

    Michale, you argued, and I quote:

    I am talking about the SAME people who have these exact diametrically opposed attitudes..

    1. Big money in elections is BAD....

    2. We LOVE the leaders who bring Big Money to elections...

    How is discussing Democrats like Ms. Pelosi's ability to bring "Big Money" to elections NOT talking about Democrats raising money? Do tell.

    But I have to admire the way you created a totally different strawman argument and then really kicked the shit out of it..

    Now you are just projecting your spit onto Balthy. Again, you lose.

    Your argument to me is another good laugh:

    Sorry, honey pie.. I think I know better than you what my point was..

    Apparently NOT this time, sugar bear, as a quick review of your words in bold and italics up there quite easily proves.

    And it was, and is, the fact that ya'all decry big money in elections while at the same time applauding.... yep... big money in elections...

    No, it was in fact that you claimed "we" were praising Nancy Pelosi's ability to raise big money while decrying big money in elections. I said and Balthy agreed that it was a non-issue type issue because it's there on both sides regardless who raises it and it's simply defined in different terms. Then you added in the Citizens United SCOTUS decision to bolster your case, which really proves nothing since Ms. Pelosi's fundraising prowess existed multiple decades before the 2010 Citizens United decision and the issue of dark money and foreign quatloos undermining our American democracy. Admiring her ability to raise money by no means equals "minding" or "not minding" big money in elections. Big money is ever present in elections regardless of who is doing the fundraising and on which side of the political aisle they reside. I can assure you that NOT all PACs give money to one Party or the other; there are actually many PACs that support both Parties. In point of fact, there are additionally quite a lot of millionaires/billionaires who support candidates on both sides of the aisle; the name Donald Trump comes quickly to mind... you may have heard of him. :)

    I digress, but have you heard Donald Trump lately whining about those investigating him being Hillary Clinton supporters and having given money to Democrats? That's yet another good belly laugh since the Donald himself was once a Bill/Hillary Clinton supporter who also contributed money to Democrats and the Clinton Foundation. All he is proving with that line of nonsensical rhetoric is that he is indeed being investigated by his equals.

    You don't mind big money in elections if it pushes an agenda you approve of...

    Wrong. Big money in elections exists on both sides whether I approve of the agenda or not, and believe it or not, I approve of some of the agenda on both the right and the left... as does your precious Donald Trump. Focus. :)

    You just don't like big money when your opponents use it...

    That's hypocrisy, dearest.. :D

    I will concede I don't like foreign quatloos being laundered and used to undermine American democracy because that's illegal and treasonous. Other than that, there are millions of people who've contributed to both sides for many different reasons, and it's high time you clued in to the fact that NOT everybody is going to resemble your neat little one-size-fits-all rhetoric... up to and including Donald J. Trump. :)

  90. [90] 
    Kick wrote:

    Don
    88

    How is referring to those that refuse to support Big Money candidates as purists different from referring to those supporting and defending the establishment Big Money candidates as establishment and defenders?

    Oh, as far as the use of labels goes, I suppose it is not different, but whining about someone else's candidate failing to meet your standards when your own candidate doesn't meet them either is just nuts... just a matter of degrees, I suppose... just my opinion.

    If you keep voting for Big Money candidates you will continue to get Big Money legislators and candidates.

    Don, they're all "Big Money candidates." If your candidate needs the Party structure in which to run because he states he's "not a billionaire," he concedes that fact.

    Why is demanding that candidates be small contribution candidates any different than demanding that they support any other issues?

    It's just a non issue in my opinion, Don. I think there's really no such thing as a small contribution candidate anyway. The different sides just define "good big money" and "bad big money" in different ways.

    Please also note how I pointed out the flaw in the Bernie small contribution tale. Even though he did not meet my requirements I still voted for him (and Jill Stein) because they were close enough to my requirements.

    You sure did. If you noticed in my post at [80], I did refer to you as "pure as the driven snow... mostly." :)

    Not the actions of a purist. But not a tool of the Big Money establishment "centrists" either.

    Well, Don, you're not a tool, and maybe you think I am one because I don't see things in quite the same terms as you do, but I'm okay being referred to as a tool by the lefties and the righties because I've been in service to my country in multiple capacities for a very long time.

    And STILL if Bernie had won the Democratic nomination, this tool would have voted for Bernie over Benedict Donald every day of the week. :)

  91. [91] 
    altohone wrote:

    Kick
    87

    "So what exactly?"

    You are refusing to answer and instead argue against my question (see the question mark?) as if that qualifies as an answer.

    Why won't you answer?
    Because your both sides of the fence spinning about Big Money is exactly as it seems.

    You rail about what an outsider Bernie is, and then claim he embodies the establishment.
    How can I take you seriously?

    You bust on unions and assure me they're guilty of something you can't explain, and then equate them with Big Money from the super rich who, unlike the unions, actually get the policies they want enacted.
    How can I take you seriously?

    "I happen to think there's not really too much that divides them aside from the rhetoric"

    Then you are blind to the rightward lurch taken by the New Democrats who still control the party.
    How can I take you seriously?

    "purity"?

    We have discussed and I have admitted Bernie's faults, yet you ignore that history, and you ignore that unlike the corporatist establishment Dems busy coddling the rich, Bernie is STILL fighting for working class Americans... as if the difference doesn't exist or matter.
    How can I take you seriously?

    "that horseshoe effect of Jean-Pierre Faye wherein those on the far ends... rather than being at opposing ends of the political horseshoe... in fact closely resemble one another."

    Again you trot out the depiction of traditional New Deal Democrats as extremists.
    How can I take you seriously?

    I don't know... a massage, sauna, hike in the woods, whatever... please do something to regain your formerly centered, reasonable self.
    I said please.

    A

  92. [92] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Kick-
    You are correct that they are all Big Money candidates. And that's the problem. There is no other choice.
    But just because there are no small contribution candidates doesn't mean that there can't be. Remember how there was no way that Bernie could raise enough money to compete with Hillary and Trump would never get elected?
    It may be a non issue for you- but it is THE ISSUE for me. And I am not alone.
    Jane Mayer said in an interview with Bernie Sanders that the problem of Big Money in politics effects every other issue so she didn't see how we could solve any other issues until we solve the problem of Big Money in politics.
    And the different sides do NOT all define good Big Money and bad Big Money in different ways. That is a perfect example how you want to keep the discussion defined to only two choices.
    There are more than two sides to many issues.
    And my side defines ALL Big Money as bad.
    I did notice your comment 80 (thank you) and was just stating that I would not be a tool of the "centrists" just as you were stating you would not be a tool of the extreme left or right.
    But this is case where there really are two choices.
    Either you are being used or you are complicit.
    Not meant as an insult- just food for thought (sorry, there is no nice way to say that without seeming like an insult).
    And while I appreciate that you would have voted for Bernie if he won the nomination, I hope you can see that is an easier pill to swallow than the other way around.

  93. [93] 
    Kick wrote:

    A01

    You rail about what an outsider Bernie is, and then claim he embodies the establishment.
    How can I take you seriously?

    Oh, I see my point has FINALLY been made after several... agonizing... attempts. So... cat out of the bag now. My point in doing that was to maybe... just maybe... get you to understand what it feels like to be a centrist and getting the same spit from your end so I quite simply flipped the script on you. :)

    I have to tell you, it gets really old and tired listening to progressives refer to a Democrat as "no different than Trump, "Republican," "neoliberal," "establishment," and "not a true Democrat" while asking for a concession that their non-Democratic candidate would indeed be a Democrat if he had been elected the Democratic nominee. I gave that concession while realizing that a large number of lefties would never give it to a Democrat. What does it say about a group that insists their candidate would be a Democrat by winning a nomination while insisting that another group's candidate winning that same nomination isn't one?

    How many times have I said I think the only thing that truly separates us is the rhetoric? Well, it's that very rhetoric I'm talking about where one group refers to the other group's candidate as "establishment" or "whatever" and "not a true whatever." That rhetoric is simply BS. They, to borrow your words there, "rail about what an outsider [whomever] is and then claim s/he embodies the establishment."

    How can I take YOU seriously when you insist an Independent is a Democrat but a Democrat isn't? See my point now about rhetoric?

    You bust on unions and assure me they're guilty of something you can't explain, and then equate them with Big Money from the super rich who, unlike the unions, actually get the policies they want enacted.
    How can I take you seriously?

    I think you just misunderstood me there. I DO NOT bust on unions. Oh, I could explain to you exactly why I don't and never would "bust on unions," but I can assure you that I DO NOT bust on unions. Just saying there that unions have some big money, and it's not all from poor people. That's not in any way whatsoever an insult; it's just a FACT. :)

    Then you are blind to the rightward lurch taken by the New Democrats who still control the party.
    How can I take you seriously?

    Well, the fact that you've used the term "New Democrats" instead of your usual "neoliberals" means you must be taking me at least a tad seriously and leads me to think you might have realized at least to some small degree the point I was trying to make. Maybe?

    We have discussed and I have admitted Bernie's faults, yet you ignore that history, and you ignore that unlike the corporatist establishment Dems busy coddling the rich, Bernie is STILL fighting for working class Americans... as if the difference doesn't exist or matter.

    Please remember that flipped script was intentional there, and I see your point is sounding like my point now. Infuriating, huh? How can I take you seriously if you insist "the difference doesn't exist or matter"? Bernie will be fine, as will Jane, but she is under investigation now and lawyered up accordingly. Been there, done that. :) The majority of spit you will get from the centrists is primarily trying to flip the spit they felt like they got from your direction right back at you... not Bernie or Jane personally but their surrogates, etc.

    Again you trot out the depiction of traditional New Deal Democrats as extremists.

    Flipped that script.

    I don't know... a massage, sauna, hike in the woods, whatever... please do something to regain your formerly centered, reasonable self.
    I said please.

    I said pweeeeze! :p

    I never stopped being reasonable; I'm the centrist in this outfit, remember? I'm trying to make a point here. That's why I say mean things and then finish it up with:

    And STILL, I would have voted for Bernie over Benedict Donald every day of the week. It's true.

    p.s. HRC is not running again so stop worrying about that; it's simply NOT going to happen. :)

  94. [94] 
    Kick wrote:

    Don
    92

    You are correct that they are all Big Money candidates. And that's the problem. There is no other choice.

    Bingo! :)

    But just because there are no small contribution candidates doesn't mean that there can't be. Remember how there was no way that Bernie could raise enough money to compete with Hillary and Trump would never get elected?

    Citizens United and dark money along with illegal foreign contributions being funneled into American elections makes this even less likely, though.

    And the different sides do NOT all define good Big Money and bad Big Money in different ways. That is a perfect example how you want to keep the discussion defined to only two choices.

    I wasn't limiting that to two candidates; I meant all of them.

    https://www.opensecrets.org/pres16/contributors?id=N00000528

    Jill Stein has large contributions from some of the same companies as Bernie, as does HRC. Many companies give to multiple candidates of multiple parties. Some define these contributions as "good big money" while others don't. I just see them all as big money candidates because they all are. Open Secrets is easily searchable and very informative. :)

    There are more than two sides to many issues.
    And my side defines ALL Big Money as bad.

    All of it isn't though, Don. I had a friend, retired now, who used to call me and ask whom I deemed worthy candidates to receive his company's money. He'd then cut them very large checks expecting nothing in return... said he couldn't take it with him. Lots of donors give to multiple candidates for no other reason than they've got the money, but I agree that far more give with expectations. Remember also that "big money" is a relative term. Somebody might donate $100 and it's every penny of extra money they've got, while somebody else might donate $100,000 and never give it a second thought.

    Hey, Don, my side defines foreign money as bad... also illegal and treasonous.

    I did notice your comment 80 (thank you) and was just stating that I would not be a tool of the "centrists" just as you were stating you would not be a tool of the extreme left or right.

    Well, I'm well aware that someone is always going to see me as a "tool" no matter what I do. :)

    But this is case where there really are two choices.
    Either you are being used or you are complicit.
    Not meant as an insult- just food for thought (sorry, there is no nice way to say that without seeming like an insult).

    Doesn't bother me, Don. There are those who would call you "complicit" too for giving us Trump, but unless you live in PA, WI, or MI, you wouldn't exactly qualify. ;)

    And while I appreciate that you would have voted for Bernie if he won the nomination, I hope you can see that is an easier pill to swallow than the other way around.

    I can see why you would say that in a normal election cycle, but from where I sit, I can't say I understand that for the 2016 election. I expect time will make it clear why. :)

  95. [95] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Kick-
    While we will not agree as we are looking from different perspectives, it's still good to have the discussion.
    First, sorry about the Brainfart- even though you seem to have taken it without offense.
    There is a nicer way to say what I said without seeming like an insult.
    If you're not part of the solution- you're part of the problem.
    Duh.

    Citizens United, Dark Money, Big Money all make the possibility of small contribution candidates seem less likely with each election- but that is how that house of cards works. As long as people believe it is impossible it is. When people stop believing it falls apart.
    But as long as we're conversing, could you answer this question that no one has answered yet.
    If 20% of the 2016 voters participated in One Demand in 2018 could it result in 10-50 small contribution candidates elected to Congress (includes the Senate)in 2018?

    explanation: About 470 congressional and Senate elections in 2018. 50 states. Some below the 20% average, some above the 20% average at 25-30%.
    In states above the average, some districts below the 25-30% average, some above at 35-40%.
    As only 25-35% of citizens participate in the primaries, it is possible that the 25-35% of citizens in the above the 20% national average districts that support small contribution candidates could equal the party regulars that normally vote for the Big Money candidates in the primaries. In some cases a small contribution candidate could win the nomination for BOTH Current Major Parties in the primaries.
    In the general election in the above the 20% average a third party or independent could win or take enough votes to flip a gerrymandered district to the other CMP. Flipping some districts in this way would weaken both CMPs for the next election cycle.

    Remember, the question is if they did participate- not if they will participate and not will it work but could it work?

    And it is no different than all the IFs that go along with continuing to vote for Big Money candidates. If you elect them they will do whatever you want that would be against what the Big Money contributors want.

    Guess what. 2016 was a normal cycle. It was the culmination of all the normal election cycles that lead up to it. And it will continue to get worse until citizens demand better.
    I expect time will make it clear why.
    But I hope that people will stop believing in the house of cards instead because if time does make it clear why it will be when people realize they are looking back and thinking at least Trump wasn't so bad compared to the current president like they are starting to do now with GWB.

  96. [96] 
    Kick wrote:

    Don
    95

    First, sorry about the Brainfart- even though you seem to have taken it without offense.

    *LOL* You're funny, Don. I've heard it all, though. :)

    There is a nicer way to say what I said without seeming like an insult.
    If you're not part of the solution- you're part of the problem.

    Well, without going into too many specifics, there are actually scenarios whereby someone CAN actually be "part of the problem" while insisting they are "part of the solution." You have heard of one Party encouraging contributions be sent to another Party's opponent to keep them well funded and in the race against an opponent they'd rather not face? It happens all the time.

    But as long as we're conversing, could you answer this question that no one has answered yet.
    If 20% of the 2016 voters participated in One Demand in 2018 could it result in 10-50 small contribution candidates elected to Congress (includes the Senate)in 2018?

    Holy moly, Don. I have no idea! Keep in mind that most donations are already small donations... hard to believe, I know, but it's true. The Super PACs account for around 0.5% in the number of contributions, but they're providing a staggering amount in terms of amount of contributions.

    https://www.opensecrets.org/overview/donordemographics.php

    It'd be nearly impossible to quantify with the gerrymandering nationwide and the fact that a "small" $200 donation in Mississippi will go quite a long way, while a $200 donation in New York City MIGHT buy you lunch for a bank of phone workers. It'd be next to impossible to consider all the relevant factors to come up with an answer. :)

  97. [97] 
    Kick wrote:

    Don

    One more thing before I move onward.

    I think your "One Demand" would be a much more effective tool for actual change if it focused also on "One Demand" also of each VOTER: Vote! Get to the polls and vote, people.

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