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angrychair

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Gender: Male
Current location: Olympia, Washington
Member since: Mon Nov 13, 2006, 02:36 PM
Number of posts: 3,225

About Me

Want to know more about what I care about? poormansumbrella on Twitter can contact me privately at poormansumbrella@gmail.com

Journal Archives

It's just an accounting glitch

Sanders campaign started April 30. In this Politico story, the campaign stated they had raised $13.7 million from April 30th to June 30.

"76 percent of the Vermont senatorís donations were $200 or less, amounting to just under $10.5 million of the $13.7 his campaign raised through the end of June.
The $15.2 million comes from a transfer of $1.5 million from his Senate campaign committee.

http://www.politico.com/story/2015/07/bernie-sanders-campaign-finance-fec-15-million-2016-120164

There were several stories and campaign announcements regarding the amount that matches the report:
http://www.cnn.com/2015/07/02/politics/bernie-sanders-fundraising/

Campaign Finance Institute has two charts that support the reported numbers:
Here: http://www.cfinst.org/pdf/federal/president/2016/Table1_Rec-Cash.pdf

And here:
http://www.cfinst.org/pdf/federal/president/2016/Table2_Individual%20Donors.pdf


At the end of the day, nothing "mysterious" but a staffer making a mistake in the paperwork.

Clinton and SChip

Clinton clearly has little to crow about. Though her and Bill did make themselves multimillionaires by racking in millions in speaking fees from Wall St firms and fees from private colleges that screwed poor people, not much else.
She likes to bring up SChip a lot. So, let's ask the actual writers of the Bill, Orrin Hatch and Ted Kennedy, and what they think:

Sen. Hatch stated:
"I do like her," Hatch said of Hillary Clinton. "We all care about children. But does she deserve credit for SCHIP? No - Teddy does, but she doesn't."

Sen. Ted Kennedy (FYI, despite all her quoting him and tying herself to Kennedy's legacy, Kennedy endorsed Obama for president in 2008) he stated:
"Asked whether Clinton was exaggerating her role in creating SCHIP, Kennedy, stopped in the hallway as he was entering the chamber to vote, half-shrugged.

"Facts are stubborn things," he said, declining to criticize Clinton directly. "I think we ought to stay with the facts."

Or let's ask another noted Democrat, Henry Waxman, who's committee approved the Bill in the House:
"It was a bipartisan bill. I don't remember the role of the White House," said Representative Henry Waxman, a California Democrat who has not endorsed a candidate in the presidential race and who was the chief Democrat on the Energy and Commerce Committee, which deals with health matters. "It did not originate at the White House."

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2008/03/14/clinton_role_in_health_program_disputed/?page=full


While I grant you that some are willing to give her some credit, like Fact Check, fine I guess. The Bill's authors are not willing to give her credit. The Bill's chief supporters are not. I didn't say it, they did. She didn't write the bill, fight for it in Congress and it took two attempts to get it to pass due to opposition from the WH.

It is in very poor taste and an insult to the memory of a great man like Ted Kennedy that she would attempt to steal the glory and accomplishments right from the man's grave.

The amazing times we live in

Currently, major Democratic and Republican Party candidates for president are under federal investigation for serious crimes yet still appear to have major support from their respective Parties.
Think about that. Let it sink in. There are people that could very well be voting for a candidate, in the Tuesday primary, they hope to be president of the United States that they know is under investigation for very serious crimes.
What the hell is wrong with our country when this is "ok"??

Please don't insult my intelligence or your own by making excuses or spinning tales of "vast right-wing conspiracies" or laughable attacks on news sources. That is bullshit. What is happening is real. There are real federal judges. Real FBI agents. Real IGs. Real reports from real intelligence agencies. Real Justice department attorneys.

Do republicans really fear Clinton?

I wanted to speak out this morning in frustration over the current "HRC has already won" meme, you'd think she was moving into the WH by the end of the week. I couldn't think of anything good and worthy of what I wanted to say. How to drive the point home successfully. I had nothing.

That is when the realization struck me like a ton of bricks: Clinton is the type of candidate we on the left fear the most.
The type that red-meat republicans would never elect on their own. The type establishment republicans could never get past their primary gauntlet.

She is liberal(ish) on social issues but far right on fiscal issues.
She talks about social issues and will take "action that can actually get done" to quote her phrase about justice reform,and healthcare and reproductive rights, enough that we at least feel better about things.
On the fiscal side, she will do little to nothing to overturn Citizens United, no one with 24 SuperPACs, including a special PAC to circumvent the rules against no coordination between campaigns and SuperPACs(while staying in the law. See The Colbert Show series on SuperPacs), has any actual interest in dissolving that money generation machine. Her senior advisors and financial and economics campaign staff are literally the 'who's who' of industry insiders.
Sorry to burst your bubble, you don't staff yourself deep and wide with financial industry millionaires and spend the last 10 years making millions of dollars from the financial industry youself, to all of a sudden, start putting the regulatory screws to them.
Since NAFTA, a Clinton hasn't met a trade deal they didn't like. TPP will not be different. It's the often quoted "reality" that we are a party to that deal. She will embrace it with open arms.

I don't even see the fossil fuel industry on their radar. Not a bad thing for them. Status quo is the defacto campaign motto.

In short, this is all part of the gambit to keep us screaming and fighting about social issues (which the majority of us actually agree on) while they continue to take in billions and we become poorer.

For all the imploring "to see the real world", their are a lot of heads in the sand.

Fantasyland

A lot is made of Bernie Sanders as a "unicorn, rainbows and fairy dust" candidate. While I think that displays a serious misunderstanding of what is trying to be achieved, that is not my OP today, on the cusp of the SC vote and the impending "Super Tuesday".

The short version is most, if not all, republicans will drag their naked body across a room full of broken glass to vote against HRC in a general election. Many may not like casting a vote for tRump but they sure as hell are not going to let Clinton win. For all the concern about Sanders being a Democratic Socialist, little has been made of the vitriol hate republicans have for Clinton and the turn-out her name on the ticket will generate. The combination of Clinton and tRump have been the major driving factors for cross-over votes for Sanders so far.

You can counter that tRump is a xenophobic, racist asshat, which is true, sadly it won't matter.
He is not filling up 20,000 seat venues and besting every other republican, even in their own home state, with just republicans. The math is not In her favor.

Why?

A vast majority of Independents will not vote for her. They are more atuned to scandals and history (guilty or not) than most and will never vote for her. They may not like everything he says but they also know that none of that ignorant, racist shit is going anywhere either. Then there is the young and at least some Bernie supporters, that have spent the primary season being called childish, naive, ignorant, going to burn in hell, believers in unicorns and fairy dust and so on. Some will still vote, many will not. Why would you want their vote anyway? If they are ignorant and naive, why would you want them as one of your supporters? See how that sword cuts both ways?

For all this chest-thumping about how well she is doing with PoC in the South, with all due respect to my friends in the South, in a general election, that support is insignificant and meaningless to the voter base there. Obama lost the southern states in the general election by double-digits, both times. tRump will win them in a landslide against Clinton, including Florida.

Which leads me to swing states. What states can she hope to carry? Florida is impossible. North Carolina is also impossible. Virginia is impossible. Pennsylvania is unlikely. Ohio is a toss-up. Indiana is impossible. Minnesota is unlikely. Michigan is a toss-up. Nevada is very likely. Unfortunately by the time we get to Nevada, the election is already over.

Why is it different for Sanders? He gets New voters. Young voters. Yes, Black voters. Yes, Hispanic voters. He gets a majority of Independents. Finally, he gets something Clinton will not get, cross-over republicans to vote against tRump, not for Sanders.

Most importantly, with a large republican turn-out against Clinton and voting a straight republican ticket in combination with gerrymandering that is now, more than ever, unlikely to change, we could lose the House and Senate for decades.

This is the cold hard reality.

The Impossible

Far to often power and money control our outcomes. Millionaires and billionaires weld unprecedented influence over the halls of Congress. Money giving access that the majority of us could never get. Corporations have amazing influence over what we watch, hear, eat and know. The income inequality in our country and our world is stark. Every person, save one, running for the office of President of the United States is a millionaire. Some even billionaires. Millions of dollars are being pumped into this election cycle to control the outcome. The many are truly at the mercy of the few.

Competing against such a force would make even the best of us second guess ourselves.

2016 is different though. It is less about money. It is less about political power. While we are so much better than we were 8 years ago we still have so much further to go. Far to many are not where they should be. Far to many were left behind. If only we had someone that could bring that into focus. A muse to our writer. To help us throw away the script and rewrite it. Where would they find that?

It is possible that we have found what we need in a loud, ruffled, white-haired man from Vermont. Not rich. Not powerful. Not perfect. On a mission to make a difference.

Far to many were searching for a voice to give life to their frustration. To take a stand. That our society can longer tolerate the massive transfer of wealth, going to so few, to the detriment of so many. That is the vile, beating, black heart of the issue. The disparity of wealth creates a disparity of influence. We lack the ability to shape the outcomes that benefit ourselves as equally as they do the very wealthy. As that control slips further from our grasp, we loss faith in ourselves and the institutions we trusted to make the differences we need. We lose faith in ourselves. We doubt our ability to make things better. That is where we are now. We have such damaged views of our government, our financial industries and corporations and divide ourselves along such stark contrasted lines. We need a better way forward.
Sometimes all it takes is one voice. One voice to speak for those that feel they have lost their voice.
Someone to say we are sick. Healthcare, for women and men, is a right, not a privilege.
Someone to say We are poor. Education free of financial burden and fair pay is a right, not a privilege.
Someone to say our planet is damaged. Clean water, clean air and a stable climate are a right, not a privilege.
Someone to say that we are a people of many colors, many beliefs, sexual orientations and from many nations. Equal and fair treatment for all is a right, not a privilege.

These are not new or novel concepts. The ideals of a happy, healthy, educated and equal people were the seeds planted by our Founding Fathers from the very beginning. They were flawed men. They formed an imperfect union. But they aspired to so much more. That was their true genius. Their ability to see what we could become. Unafraid to forge ahead to achieve that future against an opponent that could not be beat. We were built on that hope, that need, for a better tomorrow. No matter the odds. Despite the naysayers. We, as a nation, are at our very best when faced with an impossible task.

That impossible task is laid out before us. Our nation is in need. We have a voice for our cause. This is not a task for a single person though. He has taken up the mantle but we need to take this journey right beside him. The outcome is in our hands, not Bernie Sanders.
Vote for Bernie Sanders.
Get Bernie Sanders to the White House.
Advocate for the ideals that matter to you, the reason you voted for Bernie Sanders.
Work to make those ideals a reality.

This is a symptom

Of years of failed election policy. As long as we continue to focus on the presidential elections and ignore the state, county and city elections, we will continue to be put in positions in which we have to win a presidential election as a veto stopgap measure. At some point even that will fail to be enough.
We have to win from the ground up, trying to win from the top down is a failed model. No one has those kind of coat tails.

Why it matters

Iíd like to talk about Bain Capital. Not about numbers. Not about Rmoney and his history with Bain Capital specifically. Not about Bainís connections to other companies, specifically. What I want to talk about is more important than that. I want to make the point of why organizations like Bain Capital matter.

Private equity firms are not, inherently, bad. Much like spiders and snakes, some people just donít like them, their good points are misunderstood and private equity firms, and like spiders and snakes, can hurt people or they can just plain creep them out.

Spiders and snakes can keep harmful pests out of your house and garden. Private equity firms, like Bain Capital, can flush a company with much needed funds, saving a company and its employees. So there is a positive point to them. There is a negative side too. A snake or spider can bite you on the hand while doing some morning gardening and leave you fighting for your life before the sun goes down that night. Private equity firms, like Bain Capital, can buy out your company, leverage every penny out of it for its investors and leave the dry husk to blow away in the wind. A bad day for everyone but the snake and the private equity firm but the investors got a good return on their investment so what is the harm? At the end of day, someone might have got hurt but no big deal. Not so fast.

Here is where the similarities my analogy start to diverge. It all lies in the reasoning of why they do what they do. When a snake or spider bites you and hurts you, they did it out of their sense of self-defense. They were animals being animals. They didnít seek that person out or act out in maliciousness. Why is that distinction important? The ďwhyĒ matters. The choice matters.
Because when a private equity firm, like Bain Capital, seeks out a vulnerable company and leverages its assets and sucks all the value out of an organization, it has far reaching implications that can do un-told harm. That company's doors close, forever, employees are out of work, homes are lost, marriages become rocky or broken, families become fractured, drug abuse and alcohol abuse skyrocket, local communities can fail, towns can fall and state economies can suffer. All of these bad things came about because of a choice. A choice drove the decision to use a bat on the wounded company, to beat it to death and pick its pockets, not the choice of the helping hand of investment and revitalization.

That is why Rmoneyís association with Bain Capital matters in this election. That is why the President of the United States said running a private equity firm, no matter how successful you were at running it, is not the same as being President of the United States. The Presidentís job is to be there for everyone, not the few. Rmoney's choices matter in this election.
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