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YoungDemCA

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Gender: Male
Member since: Wed Jan 18, 2012, 10:29 PM
Number of posts: 5,178

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And Democrats would be more consistently to the Left if there were more working-class/poor voters...

And if they voted (or rather, were able to vote) consistently.

None of this is a coincidence.

This is why Republicans don't want more people voting.

It's not just about hating poor people and ethnic and racial minorities, although there's obviously a strong element of that. It's what higher levels of voter registration and turnout among poor people and ethnic and racial minorities would mean in terms of public policy.

Nonvoters are more liberal than voters

A 2012 Pew survey found that likely voters were split 47 percent to 47 percent between Obama and Romney while non-voters preferred Obama 59 percent to 24 percent, a 35 point margin. A 2006 Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) study found that non-voters were more likely to support higher taxes and more government-funded services. They were also more likely to oppose Proposition 13 (a constitutional amendment which limits property taxes), dislike then -Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and support affordable housing.




It so happens that the gap between voters and non-voters breaks down strongly along class lines. In the 2012 election, 80.2 percent of those making more than $150,000 voted, while only 46.9 percent of those making less than $10,000 voted. This “class bias,” is so strong that in the three elections (2008, 2010 and 2012) I examined, there was only one instance of a poorer income bracket turning out at a higher rate than the bracket above them. (In the 2012 election, those making less than $10,000 were slightly more likely to vote than those making between $10,000 and $14,999.) On average, each bracket turned out to vote at a rate 3.7 percentage points higher than the bracket below it.

This class bias is a persistent feature of American voting: A study of 40 years of state-level data finds no instance in which there was not a class bias in the electorate favoring the rich—in other words, no instance in which poorer people in general turned out in higher rates than the rich. That being said, class bias has increased since 1988, just as wide gaps have opened up between the opinions of non-voters and those of voters.

Recent research tells us that this voting disparity—in class and in opinion—has tremendous impact on policy. State-level research suggests that higher voter turnout among the poor leads to higher welfare spending. A 2013 study found that turnout inequality directly predicts minimum wages, children’s health insurance spending and anti-predatory lending policies. And studies at the state level have found that a higher class bias in the electorate actually leads to higher levels of income inequality.


http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/01/income-gap-at-the-polls-113997

I think that what sometimes gets lost in the "economics vs. racism" arguments re: Trump voters...

...is that most people - in fact, I would argue, the vast majority of American voters - have at best, highly idiosyncratic and deeply inconsistent/contradictory political views, and that this tends (though by no means universally) to be more true with lower levels of education, income, and of course, civic engagement.

And considering that Trump, while he won among every level of education and income in the Republican primaries, disproportionately won among Republicans with lower-than-average education and income (compare his numbers among primary voters without college degrees with those of, say, Kasich, Rubio, or even Cruz - it's ridiculous), and also, considering the fact that Republican voters (especially, Republican primary voters) have higher-than-average levels of income and (to a lesser extent) education (but only on paper, of course ) compared to the general population and that Trump picked up a lot an alarming number of votes in the general election among working class, relatively modest-income white voters...well, you begin to see a pattern here!

The reality is that Trump's voters are motivated by all kinds of things, ranging from racism, xenophobia, sexism, misogyny, anti-Semitism, homophobia, transphobia, fear of terrorism (specifically, that from Muslims), and hatred of liberals and "political correctness" to resentment of the "welfare cheats and bums", "bad trade deals", the university-educated, Wall Street bankers, the "lyin', dishonest media", and "the swamp" in Washington D.C., and anything and everything else. His support is based on a constant litany of fears, resentments, and grievances that are hopelessly confused, schizophrenic, contradictory, authoritarian, and alarmingly proud in their illiberal, reactionary content - yet at the same time, are very often deeply and sincerely felt, at a gut, emotional level. It's a fucking mess!

There's no reasoning with the irrational. If anything, reason and logic backfire in this context. Sad, but true, IMHO. Not sure if there's a way to effectively fight it.

Nothing will change unless we ALL go into "enemy territory" or otherwise help "red" state/area Dems

This goes for me as much as it goes for anyone else.

We need to engage, we need to organize, we need to mobilize, and we need to do it yesterday. We need to make up for lost time, lost opportunities, and lost social and political power, and we need to do it now. Right now.

A not-at-all-exhaustive list of helpful or potentially helpful resources:

- https://swingleft.org/

- https://www.sisterdistrict.com/

- http://grassrootscampaigns.com/

- http://www.buildingmovement.org/

- https://www.democrats.org/

- https://www.democracyforamerica.com/

- http://berniecrats.net/

- http://pdamerica.org/

- https://corrupt.af/

- http://dccc.org/

- http://www.dscc.org/

- https://www.tomperez.org/

- https://keithfordnc.org/

Additionally, there are PLENTY of "issue-specific" organizations and organizations built around political advocacy for marginalized groups and economic, social, racial, and/or gender justice. And of course, there are already many people who have announced, at the very least, their INTENT to run for seats in Congressional, state, or local office in "red" states and districts. I'm sure some of them have websites already and are looking for volunteers and donations.

Also, if you are in a "red" state or district - doesn't matter how red - and are considering running for office yourself, do it. Even if you (we) have scant chance of actually winning, what matters is making our voices heard. No more half-hearted sacrificial lambs and certainly no more Republicans running unopposed, anywhere.

We have to do these things, and everything and anything else that can possibly allow us to not just be a part of the Resistance, not just get us through President Trump and Republican and right-wing control at almost every level of American governance, but for us to allow all of us to take all the chaos and horrifying things that have already happened (along with the much more horrifying shit that is sure to come) and turn it into something new, positive, progressive, constructive, equality-focused, and justice-focused, for the benefit of all people. All of us have to contribute here, in any way we possibly can. Again, that goes for me as much as it does anyone else.

The Prosperity Gospel is not just religious, although it might as well be

Considering the way that so many in the US - including (and perhaps especially) many within American evangelical Protestant circles, yes - equate wealth with wisdom, or even holiness, and poverty with laziness, irresponsibility, and even criminality (particularly in the cases of black people, poor, non-white immigrants, single mothers, and women who have abortions - regardless of how desperate or in life-threatening danger they might be).

It doesn't matter how much more the rich participate in despicable, criminal, and socially damaging activities than the poor, as I and many others maintain is the case (and that Donald Trump is among the very worst offenders even by the "standards" of sociopathic, insanely self-entitled rich white men). It certainly doesn't matter that white, right-wing evangelicals are very often among the worst offenders here as well (think of how all of the scandals regarding sex, abuse, fraud, embezzlement, or other forms of corruption that have been discovered among so many of these right-wing megachurch pastors - not to mention all of the shit that's still being kept under wraps! ) What matters is the cruel, bigoted, and incredibly self-serving narrative. "Alternative facts", doncha know?

Re: the "lyin', dishonest media": Notice how Trump/the Right's ire is directed at journalists

As opposed to, say, the corporate executives who actually control the dominant media conglomerates and what they cover ("Trump is good for CBS" ).

Also, I can't help but think about how the increased shittiness of major news media in the US directly tracks with the growth of the 24-hour news cycle, talk radio, and social media newsfeeds - all of which serve to reinforce vulgar narratives about how black people are criminals and welfare cheats, Muslims are terrorists or terrorist-sympathizers until proven otherwise, organized labor is a major nuisance at best, and access to the daily talking points fed to the news media by the President of the United States and his sycophants, Congress, and the military and intelligence community are prized infinitely more over critical investigative journalism that doesn't insult the intelligence of the public and challenges the powerful and their interests (who will control the media narrative unless they are directly and consistently challenged). Someone please explain to me how any of this is remotely of "the Left."

IMO the best line of attack against Trump is three-pronged

1. That his pathological impulsivity and complete ineptness at governance will get Anericans' sons and daughters killed in pointless military misadventures abroad.

2. That his complete disinterest in learning even the BASICS of governance will lead him to not just delegate all presidential/executive power to his nihilistic white supremacist advisers (Bannon et. al) but also, to him signing off on Congressional Republicans dismantling Social Security, Medicare, and everything else that all Americans not part of the billionaire ruling class hold dear.

and most importantly:

3. Hammer home the clear and direct connection of ALL these things to the fact that most everyone's lives - including most Trump voters, and their families, friends, and local communities - will suffer immensely under the Trump administration and the Republican-controlled federal government (and state governments, for that matter) in general. And if they don't believe you or me, they will soon see for themselves just how much Trump and his administration will do for the "forgotten men and women of this country" that isn't wholly horrific in its impact on said men and women.

Note that none of this will be part of our conversations with the people who are ALREADY on board with us. This is for everyone and anyone who we can bring over to our side, whether they're pro-Trump or fence-sitters or simply aren't really aware of the gravity of the stakes here and how much they will directly impact their own lives. We need to do this, somehow, and we all need to do it NOW. No joke.

- My $0.02.


I noticed that the two Republicans who voted against DeVos are women.

While the most stereotypically horrific far-right white male Christian fundamentalist cast the tie-breaking vote.

Any significance here, however symbolic? Will we be seeing more along these lines?

In Ian Kershaw's Hitler biography, he said that Hitler "completely privatized" political power

As in, political power was completely embodied in a despotic yet charismatic personality and his supporting cast of absolute fiends.

Moreover, the Nazi economy was essentially a cartel of corporate interests whose profitability synchronized comfortably with the political objectives of the Third Reich.

What naturally follows from this is that there's no room for popular politics here - other than the mass mobilization of violent, thuggish supporters of the regime, of course.

Food for thought in these uh, "interesting" times in which we live.


In 1994, 63% of Americans had a negative view of immigrants. In 2016, it was 27%.

(Note that the negative percantge for 2016 is very close to the approximately 25% of the adult population (as opposed to people who voted in the general election) in the US who voted for Trump. Hmmmm.... )
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