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Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: Florida
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 87,290

About Me

Retired teacher who sees much harm to public education from the "reforms" being pushed by corporations. Privatizing education is the wrong way to go. Children can not be treated as products, thought of in terms of profit and loss.

Journal Archives

FL Dem leaders want FL Progressive Caucus shut down for criticizing DSCC choice.

This is a problem. Conservative Democrats just can not go around demanding liberals be shut down because they criticize other Democrats.

FL centrist Dems want progressive FL Dems out because they criticize party leaders.

Celeste Bush, chairwoman of the St. Lucie County Democratic Executive Committee, emailed party leaders across the state advocating to the "de-certification" of the Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida, which like other Democratic clubs and caucuses must be reauthorized by party brass every few years.

Her strongly worded email came a day after the Progressive Caucus held a conference call with reporters promoting the possible Senate candidacy of outspoken liberal Rep. Alan Grayson of Orlando over the announced candidacy of moderate Rep. Patrick Murphy of Jupiter. Bush listened in on the call and seized a chance to defend Murphy, her congressman. The seat is expected to open once Republican Sen. Marco Rubio launches a presidential bid next week.

....."This action runs counter to our Democratic Party's very existence," she wrote. "We cannot have 'so called' Democrat leaders aggressively attacking an elected Democrat or any Democrat running for office. A Democratic leader is just that -- a leader of Democrats -- not just some Democrats that fit a preconceived notion of what constitutes a Democrat."

Celeste was equally critical when Dean was Chair. She even sent emails demanding Florida Democrats not give to the DNC.

Now she is comparing the Florida Progressive Caucus to the Tea Party.

"They're looking for purity in their Democrats," Bush said, comparing progressives to conservatives in the GOP. "They have a lot of single issues, just like the tea party does, and they think everybody needs to check that box, so to speak. That's just not the way people are."

The head of the Progressive Caucus, Susan Smith, wrote a letter to Patrick Murphy about how his supporters are advocating against the progressives.

Florida Democratic Party, a Picture Of Congenital Dysfunction

Yesterday, I learned your supporters have organized an effort to eliminate the Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida. In all honesty, I have to tell you that I was shocked by this news and even more dismayed by the implication that you support this effort.

I am writing to you directly so that you will know that our aim is not conflict, but debate. We do want to hold your feet to the fire on core democratic principles, but we are not attacking you personally. We don’t want a war, we just want a primary.

The truth is that we have some serious concerns about your record on Social Security, Medicare and other key issues that Democrats hold dear. Given your sudden switch from Republican to Democrat just in time to run for office and your past support of Mitt Romney over President Barack Obama, we believe those concerns are justified.

.....Soon after you were elected to Congress, you told CNN, “we have to look at cuts across the board. We’re going to have to look at Defense. We’re going to have to look at some structural changes to some programs like Social Security and Medicare.” And when you coauthored a letter with congressional Republicans, you pledged only to protect “current beneficiaries” of Medicare and Social Security.

You can see why we are concerned. You have plainly said that you would support cuts to Social Security.

The Democrats statewise or nationally under DWS are making a serious mistake in demanding we all toe a handpicked line.

Meet Professor Tim Canova who just announced run against DWS in Florida. Video.

From the You Tube link:

Uploaded on Dec 1, 2011

Andrés Arauz, COO of the Banco Central del Ecuador, and Timothy Canova, Professor of International Economic Law at the Chapman University and a member of Sen. Bernie Sander's Advisory Committee on Federal Reserve Reform, sit down with New Economic Perspectives to discuss lessons from the financial crisis.

The conversation spans origins of the crisis, deregulation, public jobs programs, financial crises in Latin America, derivatives, the Euro crisis, the dangers of a currency union without a fiscal union, debt forgiveness, an international common unit of account, monetary vs. fiscal stimulus, democratizing central banks, failures of quantitative easing, and campaign finance reform.

Here is his Twitter feed.

Tim Canova

Too often elected officials represent special interests — not the people. Let's take back our country and restore democracy.
Florida, USA

I was so happy to see someone credible running against her that I donated as soon as I heard about it.

Bernie: “I’m not in favor of privately run charter schools."

Bernie Sanders: I Oppose Charter Schools

At a meeting in New Hampshire Bernie said the following:

I’m not in favor of privately run charter schools. If we are going to have a strong democracy and be competitive globally, we need the best educated people in the world. I believe in public education; I went to public schools my whole life, so I think rather than give tax breaks to billionaires, I think we invest in teachers and we invest in public education. I really do.” – Bernie Sanders (Quote begins at 1:48:32)

Video of the town hall. Go to one hour and forty-eight minutes on the video to hear his quote.

Posted by madfloridian | Thu Jan 7, 2016, 07:56 PM (7 replies)

This part....Wow, Bernie.

Bernie Sanders Attacks Hillary Clinton Over Regulating Wall Street

Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont laid out in a fiery speech Tuesday his plan to break up “too big to fail” commercial banks and pointedly attacked Hillary Clinton for taking speaking fees from the financial industry and, in his view, for not going far enough in her plan to regulate Wall Street.

The criticism of Mrs. Clinton was some of Mr. Sanders’s strongest to date, and came after he had frequently refrained from such direct attacks.

“My opponent says that as a senator, she told bankers to ‘cut it out’ and end their destructive behavior,” Mr. Sanders said of Mrs. Clinton. “But, in my view, establishment politicians are the ones who need to ‘cut it out.’ The reality is that Congress doesn’t regulate Wall Street. Wall Street and their lobbyists regulate Congress. We must change that reality, and as president, I will.”

Mr. Sanders said that Mrs. Clinton was “wrong” to oppose his plan to reinstitute the Glass-Steagall Act, which would legally separate commercial banking, investment banking and insurances services. And the senator implicitly criticized Mrs. Clinton for being a patron of bankers when he pointed to their huge campaign donations and noted that they “provide very generous speaking fees to those who go before them.”

Video of Bernie's Policy Address on Wall Street Reform and Financial Policy

Segami has posted the entire transcript here.

Yes, Bernie signed a joint fundraising pact with DNC.

Sanders campaign inks joint fundraising pact with DNC

From Politico November 5.

Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign has signed a joint fundraising agreement with the Democratic National Committee, the DNC confirmed to POLITICO.

The move, which comes more than two months after Hillary Clinton's campaign signed such an agreement in August, will allow Sanders' team to raise up to $33,400 for the committee as well as $2,700 for the campaign from individual donors at events.

The candidate rarely headlines fundraising events, and is not close with many big-money Democratic donors, but he has been working to prove his proximity to the party in recent months as he competes with Clinton.

The Vermont senator, who is an Independent but caucuses with Senate Democrats, also recently lent his name to a fundraising letter for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, according to a campaign adviser, in another indication of his slowly growing ties to the party's infrastructure.

There now may be some question about his "his slowly growing ties to the party's infrastructure", especially since the DNC chairwoman abruptly shut him off from the voter database while playing the whole thing out in the media.

But it's been said here that he raised no money for other candidates, so this sets the record straight.

From Bernie.com at Twitter...More than a million donors. Average <$30

Bernie Sanders ‏@BernieSanders 2h2 hours ago

A people-powered campaign:

✅$73 million since April 30

✅2,513,665 contributions

✅More than 1 million donors

✅Average contribution <$30

Bernie Sanders on Twitter
Posted by madfloridian | Sat Jan 2, 2016, 02:07 PM (5 replies)

Since the late 80s the party's policy has been to shut out the left until election time.

They actually said it out loud in words.

There's been open declaration over and over of how they did not need the left anymore. They said they were getting enough corporate money, and they did not have to stand for things that might cause them to lose. They had enough money that they did not have to worry about the needs of the people who had been the usual constituents of the party. They had theirs. They didn't need us.

But now they do. Funny how that happens during every primary, every election. They push us aside until they need us, then they put us on a huge freaking guilt trip.

If the party loses they drag out the trite stuff about how they got too partisan, about how the left failed to vote. Any excuse except what really happened.

What really happened was that the new policy makers of the party decided that by taking corporate money, they could stand for whatever they needed to stand for to win. They thought. They sounded so much like the other party that the people voted for the real thing.

They actually said out loud that they had taken over the party, and they did not need us. Not just once either.

"Simon Rosenberg, the former field director for the DLC who directs the New Democrat Network, a spin-off political action committee, says, "We're trying to raise money to help them lessen their reliance on traditional interest groups in the Democratic Party. In that way," he adds, "they are ideologically freed, frankly, from taking positions that make it difficult for Democrats to win."

Rob Shapiro, the DLC VP at the time, and a Clinton advisor, spoke clearly about their purpose.

What we've done in the Democratic Party," explains institute Vice President Rob Shapiro, a Clinton economic adviser, "is an intellectual leveraged buyout."
The DLC, presumably, is acting as arbitrageur, selling off unprofitable mind-sets to produce a lean and efficient philosophy for the "New Democrat," as DLCers call their slick bimonthly magazine.

Al From in recruiting Bill Clinton said this. (From his book The New Democrats and the Return to Power.)
I believe you are the right person for the DLC job—and the DLC job is the right job for you. We have the opportunity to redefine the Democratic Party during the next two years. If our efforts lead to a presidential candidacy—whether for you or someone else—we can take over the party, as well.

Also from From's book

Nearly a year after our Little Rock meeting, at the DLC’s Annual Conference in New Orleans on March 24, 1990, Bill Clinton became the DLC’s fourth chairman. Calling Clinton a “rising star in three decades,” Sam Nunn passed him the gavel. Nunn quipped that when the DLC was created “we were viewed as a rump group. Now we’re viewed as the brains of the party. In just five years, we’ve moved from one end of the donkey to the other.”

The Wise Geek says that a leveraged buyout is also known as a hostile takeover.

A leveraged buyout is a tactic through which control of a corporation is acquired by buying up a majority of their stock using borrowed money. It may also be referred to as a hostile takeover, a highly-leveraged transaction, or a bootstrap transaction.
Once control is acquired, the company is often made private, so that the new owners have more leeway to do what they want with it. This may involve splitting up the corporation and selling the pieces of it for a high profit, or liquidating its assets and dissolving the corporation itself.

Here is a little more:

The clash will be between the "governing class" and the "activist class."

The former includes
the establishment types who populate Washington - politicians, interest
groups, consultants and policy makers. The second comprises "Net roots"
Democrats on the local level; that is, grass-roots Democrats, many of whom
were inspired by Dean and who connect to politics primarily online, through
blogs or Web-based activist groups like MoveOn.org. The argument between the
camps isn't about policy so much as about tactics, and a lot of Democrats in
Washington don't even seem to know it's happening.

I do disagree that with the statement that it isn't about policy....it surely is about policy now. Yes, to the party that says a "lot of Democrats in
Washington don't even seem to know it's happening."

And more:

Through the years they have tried to make "liberal" a word of shame.

I remember when I first realized how most of my Republican family felt about anything remotely off center to the left. A family member scornfully called my parents "bleeding heart liberals." My parents were moderate old-fashioned Southern Baptists who even hesitated to sip wine because the church forbade it.

I noticed it again in 2003, and it really hurt then. Those of us who became so active in politics with the Dean campaign were called liberals and scorned as fringe activists. It was stunning, and it carried right down to the local level. And it was not the Republicans who did that, it was our own party.

The most annoying thing was the preempting of the labels. The conservative Democrats began to call themselves progressives as they pushed liberals aside and called them fringe. They also renamed themselves the "sensible center" and the "moderate middle" and other similar high-sounding terms.

It started a long time ago. And through the years the degrading comments toward liberals/leftists/the left have escalated.

The Wise Geek was right.

It truly was a hostile takeover. They don't plan on giving any of it back to those who traditionally were considered a part of it. They are not going to give up their control over policy. They are going to keep treating the more liberal part of the party as conveniences when elections roll around.

I'm glad Bernie Sanders is running, I'm very happy he's not easily intimidated. I have no idea if he will win or lose, but I know one thing for sure. He's started something that will bring change that has long been needed.

People say he can't change things, but I say he will loudly protest what he can't change and not comply easily.

OWS: "began in a particular place, sputtered and subsided, only to re-emerge elsewhere"

Not done yet by any means. Just re-emerging!

This is from way down in an article today in The Atlantic Monthly:

Why America Is Moving Left

When academics from the City University of New York went to Zuccotti Park to study the people who had taken it over, they found something striking: 40 percent of the Occupy activists had worked on the 2008 presidential campaign, mostly for Obama. Many of them had hoped that, as president, he would bring fundamental change. Now the collapse of that hope had led them to challenge Wall Street directly. “Disenchantment with Obama was a driver of the Occupy movement for many of the young people who participated,” noted the CUNY researchers. In his book on the movement, Occupy Nation, the Columbia University sociologist Todd Gitlin quotes Jeremy Varon, a close observer of Occupy who teaches at the New School for Social Research, as saying, “This is the Obama generation declaring their independence from his administration. We thought his voice was ours. Now we know we have to speak for ourselves.”

The article does a good job of describing the rise and fall and rise in another form of the Occupy Movement.

For a brief period, Occupy captured the nation’s attention. In December 2011, Gitlin notes, the movement had 143 chapters in California alone. Then it fizzled. But as the political scientist Frances Fox Piven has written, “The great protest movements of history … did not expand in the shape of a simple rising arc of popular defiance. Rather, they began in a particular place, sputtered and subsided, only to re-emerge elsewhere in perhaps a different form, influenced by local particularities of circumstance and culture.”

That’s what happened to Occupy. The movement may have burned out, but it injected economic inequality into the American political debate. (In the weeks following the takeover of Zuccotti Park, media references to the subject rose fivefold.) The same anger that sparked Occupy—directed not merely at Wall Street but at the Democratic Party elites who coddled it—fueled Bill de Blasio’s election and Elizabeth Warren’s rise to national prominence. And without Occupy, it’s impossible to understand why a curmudgeonly Democratic Socialist from Vermont is seriously challenging Hillary Clinton in the early primary states. The day Bernie Sanders announced his candidacy, a group of Occupy veterans offered their endorsement. In the words of one former Occupy activist, Stan Williams, “People who are involved in Occupy are leading the biggest group for Bernie Sanders. Our fingers are all over this.”

I agree with some parts of this next paragraph, but strongly disagree with others.

I think many Democrats in general agree with the leftward movement, but the party's infrastructure is not on board at all. The leadership of the DNC is in full lockstep with the new policy think tank, The Third Way. They are not the majority of our party, but they are seemingly in complete charge for now.

Arguably more significant than the Sanders campaign itself is the way Democratic elites have responded to it. In the late 1980s and the ’90s, they would have savaged him. For the Democratic Leadership Council, which sought to make the party more business-friendly, an avowed Socialist would have been the perfect foil. Today, in a Democratic Party whose guiding ethos is “no enemies to the left,” Sanders has met with little ideological resistance. That’s true not only among intellectuals and activists but among many donors. Journalists often assume that Democrats who write big checks oppose a progressive agenda, at least when it comes to economics. And some do. But as John Judis has reported in National Journal, the Democracy Alliance, the party’s most influential donor club, which includes mega-funders such as George Soros and Tom Steyer, has itself shifted leftward during the Obama years. In 2014, it gave Warren a rapturous welcome when she spoke at the group’s annual winter meeting. Last spring it announced that it was making economic inequality its top priority.

Point 1 disagreement: Sanders IS meeting with ideological resistance. The power of those currently in charge is threatened by such change.

Point 2 disagreement: The savaging of the left took place in 2003/2004, not just in the 80s and 90s. They even had a press conference announcing Dean would not be president.

Point 3 about the Democracy Alliance. They are secretive in which media they are funding, so we really don't know what those mega-donors believe.

Howard Dean said a few months ago not to underestimate Bernie Sanders. I agree, and I also say don't underestimate the remaining power of the shape-changing OWS.

(Posted this in GD rather than GDP primary as it is not really about just this primary, and it is not so much about either candidate as about a movement that started in one form and is morphing. )

Florida Squeeze: A serious view of what Democrats face in 2016. Won't be easy.

We are seeing a different kind of progressive movement that's not easy to define. It's about Bernie Sanders, but that's only a part.

We're not going to be seeing much (or any) of Bernie in Florida. Can't blame him for that. All the state Democratic leadership appears to be on board with Hillary.

I am noticing though that there have been some well attended local events for Bernie.

Other than that he's hardly mentioned in our local media.

Democrats facing a potentially difficult 2016 with movement progressives

The data breach was by most standards a relatively minor happening that would have simply had a reaction limited to political insiders, data nerds and political press – had the DNC not bungled it so badly from a public relations standpoint. The DNC’s action inflamed non-political people who are backing Bernie Sanders and tend to see political parties as cartels that do not believe in the normal processes of Democracy.

Whether or not this is fair, a large segment of voters the party depends on feels the deck is stacked against the candidates they favor like Senator Sanders who articulate the views they live by. These are what I call “movement progressives.” They are motivated by issues particularly economic ones and are not comfortable with the Wall Street ties of the Obama Administration and the Clinton campaign.

Those connected closely to politics support Secretary Clinton, like they did her husband because of the political benefit – Democratic administration and the potential for patronage jobs or consulting contracts.

....Political types like to use fear to motivate the Democratic base. Paraphrasing here but basically they say “If you don’t support this Democrat, you’ll get a much worse Republican who is a racist that will destroy reproductive rights, push religion, hand everyone guns and ban minorities from advancing in our society before deporting anyone with a foreign sounding name.” These fear tactics have long worked as movement progressives felt they needed to play defense and support the lesser of two evils. Closing ranks eventually happens as a worse alternative looms, and the Democratic establishment knows that. However now many progressives are reaching a wits end, meaning the trick may not work this year for the party.

There is a truly good comment in the comments section of the article. It was written by a Florida Democrat I learned to respect very much during the 2004 campaign.

From the comments

(The link to the comment doesn't seem to go straight to the comment I mentioned. I am speaking of the one by David Jones.)

As a lifelong Democrat, I find it appalling that the DNC and the FDP could not find it within themselves to facilitate an even playing field during this election cycle. The chosen line-up of speakers at Leadership Blue and the FDP convention, the limited debate schedule, and both the FDP Chair and Vice Chair signing on as official members of Hillary Clinton’s Florida Campaign Team has sent a loud and clear message that those candidates who subscribe to the traditional progressive policies that provided social mobility during our nations hey day, are no longer worthy of having their voices heard through official channels of the Democratic party. In doing so, the party leadership has slammed the door in the face of countless young idealists and very well may have mortgaged the future of our party in favor of a less than honorable process designed to advance a watered down political agenda that helps far fewer people than is needed at this juncture in our history.

Way to go, David. A big hand of
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