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Jack Rabbit

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Sacramento Valley, California
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 45,681

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The campaign of McGovern and Sanders cannot be compared as easily as that

First of all, McGovern was principally an anti-war candidate running on Americans' disaffection with with the conflict in Vietnam against an incumbent president. In the end, Nixon got no better deal after the 1972 election to end American involvement in Vietnam than he could have gotten the day he took office four years earlier. Nixon used the power of incumbency to take the war issue away from McGovern. The numbers of American combat forces were steadily being reduced and peace negotiations were ongoing. Nixon even sent Dr. Kissinger to the negotiations in Paris, which lent a greater sense of gravity to the negotiations. In October, Kissinger thought he had an agreement and announced "Peace is at hand." Even though Nixon rejected that particular agreement and resumed bombing North Vietnam after the election, the message received by the American people was one of "Chill, I've got this." Thus the war, which McGovern's supporters (your most humble hare among them) thought would continue to be an issue after Labor Day, wasn't.

Bernie is running for an open presidency. If he is the nominee, there isn't much President Obama can do to undermine Bernie's candidacy without undermining his own legacy. Bernie will be running against the last Republican clown standing, who will only have a chance of winning if the corporatist Democrats revolt and run an alternative Democrat on a third party, a stunt that runs the risk of permanently dividing the Democratic Party. I don't think they really want to do that. I hate to say it (OK, I relish saying it), but if Bernie wins the nomination, who else are the corporatist Democrats going to vote for?

That brings us to the "second of all." Second of all, Bernie is not running against something that is going away or can be easily swept under the rug.

What Bernie is running against isn't other Democratic politicians, but the corporate establishment that foots the bill for their campaigns and has corrupted them in the process. Many of us (including your most humble hare) voted for President Obama in 2008 hoping for a change from the established policies of Ronald Reagan and George Bush the Preppy, which were made bipartisan by Bill Clinton. Bush the Frat Boy took those policies to an ideological extreme and demonstrated how bad they could be. The change we had hoped for under Obama was not forthcoming. Obama continued the same neoliberal policies and got the same results: a widening income gap. Has Obama been a better president than Bush the Frat Boy? Of course he has. My cat, Swashbuckler, would be have made a better president that Bush the Frat Boy. Has Obama been a second coming of FDR? No, he hasn't. Unfortunately, that is what history demanded of him.

Income inequality, political corruption and corporate tyranny are not going to go away between now and November. First of all, these are bigger problems than was the Vietnam War. Second, for eight years President Obama has been a greater part of the problem than he has been part of the solution, starting with his failure to prosecute crooked Wall Street bankers and going up to his negotiating and pushing bad trade deals like the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the even worse Trade in Services Agreement. The problems that arise from neoliberalism (or supply-side economics, trickle down economics, Reaganomics, voodoo economics, really fucked up economics or whatever name its called) won't be swept under the carpet until election day without the lumps showing, like Nixon did with the Vietnam War during the election campaign of 1972.

Neoliberalism is a monster pig. It's really ugly and no one can just put lipstick on it and pretend it's a nubile young lady named Monique. That monstrous, ugly pig is the pet of some very powerful masters, who paid off the Congressmen and state legislators who are supposed to represent us. Crooked corporatist bribed our politicians. Or maybe bribed isn't the right word since the laws were changed to distinguish a bribe from a generous campaign contribution. The corporatist tyrants have bought our politicians and by doing so have deprived the people of our voice. We know it's ugly and not very many politicians in the last three and half decades have had the courage have been willing to say it, even if we know it. We aren't fooled, but there is no one to tell the truth.

Until now. That is why Bernie Sanders is going to be president starting in January.

The system is rigged

The superdelegates should have been done away with a long time ago. It was never a good idea.

Supposedly, it was put in place to give the sensible pros a way of getting around a popular choice like McGovern. Ironically, this time, the people are right and the "sensible Democrats" are corrupt down to their socks. They take money from corporate execs and do their bidding. For those who believe that a politician who takes money by the boxcars from sources like Wall Street bankers doesn't try first and foremost to keep their sugar daddies happy, all I can say is that you are either terribly naive or trying desperately to fool yourself.

The establishment Democrats are committed to the status quo. That means four to eight more years of voodoo economics or supply-side economics or Reaganomics. Trickle-down economics is a good term, sense it lends itself well to the ironic rejoinder than after three and a half decades of it we're still waiting for the benefits to trickle down. For three and half decades, since the election of Ronald Reagan, that second-rate matinee idol, we have seen tax cuts for the rich, public services cut, manufacturing jobs vanish, unions busted and ever increasing income inequality as the middle class goes the way of those manufacturing jobs.

Why do you think ground zero of movement to raise the minimum wage to $15/hour is the fast food industry? After all, don't they just employ high school students trying to get some work experience? Today, with all those manufacturing jobs overseas, the typical fast food worker is a young adult with a family obligations. I'm sure you all heard that, but did you try to connect the dots how that all fits together? Of course, I'm sure I don't need to be the one to tell you sensible Democrats that you can't keep a family of four fed, clothed, pay the bills and keep a roof over its head even working 40 hours a week at $7.50/hour, or, for that matter, with both parents working 40 hours a week for $7.50/hour.

That is the face of America today. For me, it hits pretty close to home. My son has graduated from college, is in his early thirties lives with his mother and her husband and looks forward to the day when he can quit his job delivering pizzas and start a real career..

Trickle down economics, the system endorsed by the oligarchs who foot the bill for most politicians' re-election campaigns and has been the economic article of faith for every president starting with Reagan, whether Republican or Democrat, has destroyed the American dream.

I want that system to end. It's termination is not just a nice thing to have, it is a necessity and history demands it, screams for it. Today, February 9, 2016, with the New Hampshire finshed and Bernie Sanders, the only candidate for president in either major US political party with the courage to speak about putting an end to the nightmare began by Ronald Reagan, having won three fifths of the popular vote, but still has not even half of New Hampshire's delegation to the Democratic National Convention committed to vote for him.

Tell me that system isn't rigged.

I will tell you that we will have a political revolution, whether Bernie Sanders, the people's choice, is elected president or not.

I disagree that Trump could beat Hillary

I, for one, feel that having to choose between those two is like being asked if I'd rather be shot or hanged. Well, maybe that isn't quite right. It might be more like a choice between be shot or hanged (Hillary) or boiled in oil (Trump or Cruz).

However, I do agree that the Democratic establishment is telling me that I have no right to complain, and that there exists a long position paper form Jon Cowan, founder of the Republican Lite think tank, Third Way, which claims that there's no evidence that I or other Sandernistas are complaining at all. That kind of garbage was old when the DLC was promoting Blair Democrats in 2003 (here is a critique of the piece written after the British elections of 2005).

I was also told I had no right to complain when President Obama didn't put the kabash on Bush's infringement of the Fourth Amendment. I resented that establishment-knows-best smugness from the Obama ha sempre regione crowd, too.

Well, I voted for Obama twice. The second time I will admit that had to hold my nose, but the first time I really thought we were coming to end to all things Reagan, Bush and Bush. All that Republican crap that the DLC thought was so great that the Democrats should just wave a big white flag and join it. Like Bill Clinton did. He was one of the best Republican presidents ever.

When I joined the army in order to sit our a recession, the year was 1976 and Gerald Ford was President. I was one of six college graduates in my basic training company. Those were tough times. When I got out Jimmy Carter was President and things really weren't much better. How bad was Carter? To too many people, he made a second rate matinee idol look like a good alternative. I held my nose and voted for Carter. I think I did the right thing. While I've never been a Carter revisionist, Reagan's supply-side economics ushered in the era bubble-to-bubble booms and busts, where America enjoyed an illusion of prosperity within one bubble or another until each one burst. I have never in my adult life known a truly stable, robust American economy, like the economy after World War II that my parents enjoyed. During that entire period that I worked for a living, the rich got richer and richer, the middle class got smaller and smaller, and the Democratic Party establishment became as corrupt as the Republicans have been since the Gilded Age.

Well, establishmentarians, after 35 years of that shit, it's payback time. And you know what they say about payback. If you don't, ask King Louis and Queen Marie Antoinette about it. Yes, I'm angry.

Thank you for this courageous OP

Right on, brother.

Time and time again we have sat patiently while Rahm Emanuel calls us "retards" or Jon Cowan writes a position stating that there is no evidence that rank-and-file Democrats think the way we do. There seems to be plenty of evidence that we do and that evidence is the success of Bernie's campaign. How do you like that 800-pound gorilla, Mr. Cowan?

Apart from insulting the base of the party or brazenly lying about the base's existence or what the base thinks, Mayor Emanuel and Mr. Cowan are little more than Republicans who support gay rights and equal pay for women; they can even give lip service to Black Lives Matter, but Mayor Emanuel has absolutely no credibility when he does. They are fascists who think the party's rank-and-file should just get in line and vote for the Republican-lite candidate of their choice while they collect bribes generous campaign contributions from Wall Street donors for not sending Wall Street criminals to prison or keeping the reinstatement of Glass-Steagall off the table.

If it makes anyone happy, I will vote for Mrs. Clinton in the general election if she is the nominee of the party, although I may rethink that should she become the nominee through subterfuge after being rejected by primary voters. I will vote for her, but that will say less about what I think of her than it will say about what I think of Donald Trump or Ted Cruz or whatever clown is left standing in the GOP. I will vote for her, but I will not give her one minute of my time or one dime of my measly money, Make no mistake about it, I have no confidence in Hillary Clinton or any other neoliberal to be a good or even adequate leader for the American people.

I will vote her in November and then hit the streets starting in January to call for an end to poverty and income inequality, for renewable energy to supplement and eventually supplant fossil fuels, for civil disobedience to ISDS rulings and direct action against any corporate executive who even thinks out loud about taking a case to an unelected board of corporate shysters. We can start with Trans-Canada. I will hit the streets to call for the reinstatement of Glass-Steagall, the repealing of Gramm-Leach-Bliley and the jailing of Legs Dimon, Pretty Boy Lloyd and rest of the Wall Street criminals. I will hit the streets calling for single payer healthcare. I'll even be willing to call it (gasp!) socialized medicine. Why? Because socialism is no longer a dirty word, and we have today's crooked captains of industry and their corrupt stooges in the Republican Party or the Republican wing of the Democratic Party to thank for that.

I will hit the streets and call for democracy and an abrupt end to oligarchy. I will tolerate no nonsense about how the Founding Fathers, who owned slaves and suppressed the right to vote for the common man and all women, didn't want a democracy and thus created a mere republic. We are going to correct that serious flaw in their otherwise fine work.

I will hit the streets because though I may vote for Mrs. Clinton in November, I will not follow her off the cliff toward which every American president of both parties since Reagan has marched us. She clearly has no plans to change course from the road to that abyss.

A prediction for tonight and what to watch for . . .

After the debate, the establishment pundits will declare Hillary Clinton the winner. That judgment, as it has been in the other debates, will be without regard to whether she actually won or not, even when she gave that ridiculous performance about her integrity being impugned for suggesting that she just might be influenced all the money she gets from Wall Street criminals and 911, 911, 911.

I will have my own ideas, based on my own criteria, which can be crudely simple at times.

Let me clue you in on what I think will happen. First, Hillary will talk about how tough she'll get on Iran. She'll say something like "I'll get so tough on them that it will make their turban spin on their heads; now is not the time to let up." Instead of channeling the proto-Nazi with the atrocious comb over running for the GOP nomination, Bernie will say say something like "We are in the wake of a diplomatic triumph; this is no time to engage in threatening rhetoric." He may even lay down specific instance when he would impose sanctions, but it will be more reasonable and measured than Mrs. Clinton's hawk squawk.

Then Mrs. Clinton will tout her new found opposition to single payer healthcare. All Bernie has to say to top that kind od steer manure is "I've got a better idea" and go right into his stump speech.

If that happens, Bernie wins hands down. Game, set and match.

However, the pundits will judge otherwise. Perhaps NBC will be so brazen in their dishonesty to have Chuck Todd, that most tacky of establishment media stooges, deliver the judgment. And tomorrow, Team Weathervane will be all over DU proclaiming that Hillary won because Mr. Toad said so.

I'm going to the store now. Have at it, people.

Mrs. Clinton wants us to forget more than that

It isn't just Mrs. Clinton's disastrous record as a war hawk, but her disastrous record as a neoliberal.

Neoliberalism is the colonialism department of neoconservatism.
-- Granny D (Doris Haddock 1910-2010)


The late, great American citizen, Granny D got the formula backward. Full spectrum dominance is the stated goal of the infamous PNAC latter, meaning control of the world's natural resources on behalf of US-based corporation and the military power to seize them from unwilling foreign states. As we know, the Bushies lied the people of the nation into war with Iraq with charges of Saddam's complicity with terrorists and the existence of his secret biochemical arsenal with a capability of striking the US, neither of which had any credible foundation known to the national intelligence community. Even if the Bushies didn't know their case for war was made up of falsehoods, they went to extraordinary lengths, including outing a CIA officer, to maintain the fiction that hey had good reason to believe it was true. The goal was never so much to oust Saddam, but to make sure ExxonMobil could get at their oil laying under the Iraqi people's sand.

Thus, neoconservatism is the enforcement department of neoliberalism.

We must not think that neoliberalism is nothing more than just the colonial occupation of defiant resource-rich nations. like Iraq under Saddam any more that we should mistake Saddam as a wise and benevolent leader. It is the entire regime of deregulation and free trade, rules rewritten for the world's largest corporation and the executives who hide behind the corporate logos, like the con artist hiding behind the curtain in Emerald City. Democracy is a system of government that is supposed to protect the people from shady businessmen and common criminals alike, but democracy is not perfect. When the people, who supposedly consent to be governed by those they choose are lulled to sleep and become lax in the vigilance required to maintain democracy from being undermined by clever men with evil spirits. then it is undermined. A bribe becomes a campaign contribution, and if you think you're not naive enough to think there's any difference, then just to prove it is true in all cases. Sophistry like that leads us to the nonsense of Citizens United v. FEC, where corporations have human rights and money is free speech.

Under the neoliberal regime, co-extensive with the administrations of Ronald Reagan and each of his successors, regardless of party, the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act "modernized" the banking industry and made it legal to use the savings of small depositors in commercial banks in risky ventures that were once handled by investment banks, whose depositors were fully aware of the risks and had more to fall back on should the venture fail. Under the Gramm-Leach-Bliley, some small savers lost everything they had, including their homes and retirement funds. The obvious answer is to repeal Gramm-Leach-Bliley and reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act, which separated commercial and investment banking, preventing banks from using Mom-and-Pop's saving in risky ventures until Gramm-Leach-Bliley replaced it in 1999.

Only nine years into the regime of Gramm-Leach-Bliley, reckless behavior by Wall Street banks resulted in the global meltdown of 2008. Congress used taxpayers' money bail out the banks because they had become "too big to fail." Today, those banks are even bigger and still making risky investments using small savings. What happens if their continued reckless behavior caused another global meltdown? They expect another taxpayer bailout so they continue operating on the "modernized" business model. Nevermid that it is an unsustainable business model.

Mrs. Clinton, who gets an awful lot of free speech from Wall Street banks, not only to her political campaign, but in exorbitant speaking fees and donations to the Clinton Foundation, has expressed opposition to reinstating Glass-Steagall. Her opponent, Senator Bernie Sanders, supports reinstating Glass-Steagall. Wall Street doesn't give a lot of money to Senator Sanders; Senator Sanders depends on small contributions from the kind of people who maintain small savings accounts in banks that used to be safe until the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act replaced Glass-Steagall.

It isn't just her coziness with Wall Street banks along with her support for foreign policy misadventures like Iraq (when she was in the Senate) and Libya (when she was Secretary of State). She has supported free deals like NAFTA; she supported the TPP until she opposed it, and not because it contains the ISDS provision that threaten the deal crippling fines to any state that passes regulations that a panel of corporate shysters find inhibit expected future corporate profits. We must assume that since she has been silent on the ISDS issue that she's OK with it. I feel differently. Any deal with such a provision in it should be opposed regardless of what else is in it. As Secretary of State, she greased the skids for the fracking industry, an all-around bad idea. And in just the last week, she threw under the bus the concept of universal healthcare, which she championed as First Lady. Senator Sanders, on the other hand, is suspicious of use of military power just because we can, is opposed to free trade on principle, opposed to an environmentally destructive technique which would produce more unhealthy fossil fuels, and has been over the years an unwavering supporter of universal healthcare, unequivocally declaring that access to healthcare is a human right.

Senator Sanders is accused by some on this board of not being a real Democrat and making a career of bad-mouthing Democrats. If he has bad-mouthed Democrats it is because they opened themselves to criticism by supporting corporate interests in a clear betrayal of public trust, from supporting job-killing free trade deals to supporting an unsustainable and anti-consumer banking model to support for destructive environmental policies, like fracking or more oil drilling. As an independent, he's been a better Democrat than those who took those positions. He deserves our support.

Mrs. Clinton, on the hand, would like us to forget about all the past and present stands she's taken on the wrong side of issues important to Democrats.




Residents of Flint, stand firm and don't pay for your poisoned water

First, the Michigan emergency manager statute should be challenged in federal court and ruled unconstitutional. An emergency manager appointed by the governor is not consistent with the mandate of US Constitution that guarantees each state a "Republican form of government."

Next, the federal government should march federal troops into Michigan and restore a "Republican form of government." An emergency manager is not consistent with the US Constitution. The federal troops will restore power to elected officials whose power was seized by an emergency manager, including the City of Flint and the Detroit school district.

A criminal racketeering and conspiracy investigation shell be opened by the FBI to determine if any federal laws were broken in the appointment of any or all emergency managers by Governor Snyder starting in 2011 or in the seizure and disposal of public property by emergency manager.

Restitution shall be made to districts harmed under the statute.

Civil suits against Governor Snyder and his emergency managers shall be filed in state or federal court by affected district and residents, seeking damages for harm to public health or private individuals due to actions of the emergency mangers.

Let the American political revolution begin in earnest. Power to the people. America is democracy, not an oligarchy or a mere republic.


From Wikipedia Commons (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Eugčne_Delacroix_-_La_liberté_guidant_le_peuple.jpg)
(Public Domain)

A seasonsal song for all of you: Me, me, me, me, me . . .


Here comes Debbie Wasserman, who says she's never wrong
Here she comes a-singing our Queen's campaign song
Love and joy come to you, and put mistletoe above all doors
Kiss your children before they go to fight her wars.
Kiss your children before they go to fight her wars.

Here comes Debbie Wasserman, Bernie;s clock she shall clean
Bernie's such a traitor to so defy our Queen
All hail to the Queen, on winning we're all Hell bent
Who needs the people when you've got the one percent?
Who needs the people when you've got the one percent?

Here comes Debbie Wasserman. dressed up like a doll
All the world belongs you when you're a bankster's moll
All hail to the Queen, she's the best we've ever seen
She'll shower riches and favors on Mr. Lloyd Blankstein
She'll shower riches and favors on Mr. Lloyd Blankstein.

If this holds up, it will be excellent news in February

Don't think that New Hampshire won't have an impact. Although President Johnson technically won the New Hampshire Primary in 1968, the impressive performance of underdog Gene McCarthy set in motion political events that drove LBJ from the race. The primary was held following the Tet offensive, which US combat forces also technically won, but that paled against the fact that it happened at all. If the government had been telling the truth about the situation in Vietnam, it wouldn't have happened.

There is a reason why Bernie should wiin. Anyone who reads between the lines of this piece can see it. It was posted by a Hillary supporter on DU yesterday. The piece, ironically titled Sanders: Why he can't win, was written by notorious neoliberals supporting Mrs. Clinton and her corporate agenda: William Daley, former White Hous Chief od Staff and former executive committeeman at JPMorgan Chase; founder of the neoliberal think tank Third Way and professional wishful thinker Jon Cowan; and Lanae Erickson Hatalsky, Vice President of Third Way. The authors of the piece reiterate Cowan's nonsense about the revolution isn't happening, and this after acknowledging that voters are angry and even conceding that voters believe "the system is rigged against them." However, the authors assure their readers that what the voters aren't angry, just anxious. Without mentioning the worldwide economic collapse of 2008 that was caused by the risky behavior of Wall Street banks gambling with their depositors' money, the authors simply explain away job losses and the dwindling numbers of the American middle class by talking about new technology replacing old, and that's a good thing and people accept it because that's the way the world works. It isn't caused by rich guys pulling the strings, like the unmentioned Wall Street Bankers who gambled away your money on mine on risky investments without telling us.

I suppose one should expect an article written by three establishmentarians who would like nothing better than to wish away voters' anxiety and anger to come up with such a heaping pile of steer manure. First of all, they don't seem to realize that anxiety and anger often go together rather then being an exclusive either/or matter. Second, they wouldn't dare suggest that voters are anxious and angry because the system is rigged, would they?

Of course, they would never try to deflect voters' anxiety and anger about the economic situation in America or the world at large away from the candidate of the establishment, Hillary Clinton, would they?

It is all too obvious that voters think the system is rigged because the system is rigged.

It's not far cry from the "voters are angry at the politicians" to "voters are angry at the politicians and the corrupt corporatists who who own them," Mr. Cowan's think tank is the middle man in commerce between corrupt politicians who sell themselves and the corrupt corporations who buy them.

Being of the older persuasion, I'll probably vote for Mrs. Clinton

Giving her any time or money is out of the question, but I don't see anything wrong with voting for the lesser of two evils if there's a Plan B.

If the Sanders campaign is the start of a mass movement on left, then there is a Plan B. We can and should merge with other elements of the left with the purpose of undermining the of free trade, an unregulated and crooked financial industry, the curtailing of civil liberties militarized police and resource wars in the Middle East. The goal will be to castrate the oligarchy and establish stronger democracy than ever before. We will have no patience for the democracy is dysfunctional, that's why American is a republic meme. That may have made sense in 1787, when many of the founding fathers owned slaves and most of the others didn't challenge their right to own slaves, but today it is nothing more than an hollow slogan for a decaying aristocracy that is now fooling itself into think they can codify their right to own the planet and ride roughshod over the rest of us with a few free trade deals. To paraphrase one of their own criminal masterminds, a free trade deal is just a piece of paper. There is no reason for us to abide by laws passed by bought congressmen or signed into law by a bought president or reviewed by bought judges. These people have no moral right to govern us.

The very word aristocracy means rule by the best, but throughout history no class that ever claimed that mantle has anything more than a gaggle of corrupt, decadent sonsofbitches looking out for their own self interest at the expense of the common people. No aristocracy ever ended well for the aristocrats. The aristocracy of industrialists and financiers at the end of the age of fossil fuels will fare no better.

Rule by the best? Isn't that a hoot? The best who crashed the world economy, not just in 2008 but multiple times, started one war after another and polluted the entire planet making money on carbon emissions? If they're the best, then I'm a retired kamikaze pilot. I, for one, am convinced that workers on the factory floor in Detroit could design, build and market a better car than the dummies in the penthouse suites at Ford (Found On Road Dead) or GM (Gallons per Mile.

The only legitimate government is democracy. The safety, health and welfare the people as a whole are a government's only legitimate concern. We don't need to complicate the equation any longer by mistaking artificial persons, who are made out of legal documents, with real people who are made out of flesh and blood. The resources of the world belong to all of us. The bounty of the earth belong to all of us. The Earth itself belongs to all of us, every grain of land and drop in the seas and all that is on it and all that is under it and all that flies or blows or shines over it.

This is the new world order by our decree.
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