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Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:27 PM

A Question for You All

Do you believe it is possible to have the country we want?

I do. I think America can be whatever we decide it to be. Most of us don't like the way things are, but it appears most also believe we don't have a choice. That we can only tweak things a little, here and there, as opposed to achieving actual progress in a comprehensive way. Incremental change is fine, but we can do better. So much better.

To my mind, we have 4-8 months to render the old model obsolete, or least start the process. If we don't, we will have to resort to the same old tired status quo, making very slow progress in baby steps. Political dramas, kabuki theater and tribal fighting are not what I want for America. I'm sick of the reality tv aspect of politics.

The whole point of being a progressive is to bring about progress. Inter-tribal fighting with republicans is not progress. It's the same dance we've been dancing for many years.

Hillary is running on anti-republican sentiment and counting on tribalism to get her elected. She needs division to win.

Bernie is running on the issues that affect the people and counting on us to help him - to help us.

The choice is clear.

So, I ask again. Do you honestly believe we can have the country we want? (not a rhetorical question)

55 replies, 8264 views

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Arrow 55 replies Author Time Post
Reply A Question for You All (Original post)
Rebkeh Oct 2015 OP
Thinkingabout Oct 2015 #1
Tierra_y_Libertad Oct 2015 #2
elleng Oct 2015 #3
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #14
elleng Oct 2015 #18
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #23
JustAnotherGen Oct 2015 #27
Scootaloo Oct 2015 #51
Uncle Joe Oct 2015 #4
WHEN CRABS ROAR Oct 2015 #31
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #32
99th_Monkey Oct 2015 #5
MohRokTah Oct 2015 #6
azmom Oct 2015 #9
MohRokTah Oct 2015 #12
azmom Oct 2015 #15
MohRokTah Oct 2015 #16
azmom Oct 2015 #17
dreamnightwind Oct 2015 #52
TBF Oct 2015 #21
Dont call me Shirley Oct 2015 #25
DemocratSinceBirth Oct 2015 #13
WHEN CRABS ROAR Oct 2015 #29
LineLineLineReply .
MohRokTah Oct 2015 #36
Armstead Oct 2015 #40
MohRokTah Oct 2015 #42
Armstead Oct 2015 #44
MohRokTah Oct 2015 #45
azmom Oct 2015 #7
JaneyVee Oct 2015 #8
azmom Oct 2015 #10
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #20
azmom Oct 2015 #24
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #50
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #19
malokvale77 Oct 2015 #11
TBF Oct 2015 #22
OldHippieChick Oct 2015 #26
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #34
whathehell Oct 2015 #35
OldHippieChick Oct 2015 #46
left lowrider Oct 2015 #28
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #48
GeorgeGist Oct 2015 #30
lovemydog Oct 2015 #33
Armstead Oct 2015 #37
Thespian2 Oct 2015 #38
barbtries Oct 2015 #39
wyldwolf Oct 2015 #41
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #49
JoePhilly Oct 2015 #43
Rebkeh Oct 2015 #47
sabrina 1 Oct 2015 #53
Recursion Oct 2015 #54
stillwaiting Oct 2015 #55

Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:29 PM

1. I ask you do you know the issued Hillary is running?

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:32 PM

2. Politics-as-usual is past it's due date. As is "Not as Bad". K&R

 

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:35 PM

3. Yes, progress with Martin O'Malley:

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Response to elleng (Reply #3)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:15 PM

14. He's my second choice, actually.

He still hasn't demonstrated that he's not a 'go along to get along' type of democrat. I want a democrat but not one that still adheres to the notion of some magical middle. I don't want a centrist.

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Response to Rebkeh (Reply #14)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:24 PM

18. He certainly HAS demonstrated that he's not a 'go along to get along' type.

Read about his LENGTHY list of accomplishments:

Martin O'Malley:

1. Ended death penalty in Maryland
2. Prevented fracking in Maryland and put regulations in the way to prevent next GOP Gov Hogan fom easily allowing fracking.
3. Provided health insurance for 380,000
4. Reduced infant mortality to an all time low.
5. Provided meals to thousands of hungry children and moved toward a goal for eradicating childhood hunger.
6. Enacted a $10.10 living wage and a $11. minimum wage for State workers.
7. Supporter the Dream Act
8. Cut income taxes for 86% of Marylanders (raised taxes on the rich).
9. Reformed Maryland’s tax code to make it more progressive.
10. Enacted some of the nation’s most comprehensive reforms to protect homeowners from foreclosure.

Mother Jones magazine called him the best candidate on environmental issues.
Article here:
http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2014/12/martin-omalley-longshot-presidential-candidate-and-real-climate-hawk

AND he has ACTUAL proposed policies and PLANS:

15 Goals to Rebuild the American Dream
https://martinomalley.com/category/15-goals/

Addiction treatment and prevention
https://martinomalley.com/policy/addiction-treatment-and-prevention/

Criminal Justice Reform
https://martinomalley.com/policy/criminal-justice/

Making College Debt Free for all Americans
https://martinomalley.com/policy/make-college-debt-free/

Holding Wall Street Accountable
https://14d2r744okfe40r1ug1oqm6y-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/OMalley-Wall-Street-Reform.pdf

Expanding Social Security
https://martinomalley.com/the-latest/expanding-social-security/

Homeland Security
https://martinomalley.com/vision/homeland-security/

Immigration
https://martinomalley.com/the-latest/immigration/

National Service
https://martinomalley.com/national-service/

Environment
https://martinomalley.com/climate/iowa/
https://martinomalley.com/climate/
https://martinomalley.com/climate/agenda/

Foreign Policy
https://martinomalley.com/policy/truman-national-security/

Gun Reform
https://martinomalley.com/policy/preventing-and-reducing-gun-violence/

Trade Policy
https://martinomalley.com/policy/trade-policy/

Campaign Finance Reform (Restoring our American Democracy)
https://martinomalley.com/the-latest/restoring-our-american-democracy/

Why We Need a Constitutional Amendment to Secure the Right to Vote:
https://martinomalley.com/the-latest/news/right-to-vote/

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Response to elleng (Reply #18)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:43 PM

23. Like I said,

He's my second choice.

I prefer Bernie because he seems more likely to oppose the Washington establishment and big business - he's clearly not part of the insider beltway clique.

I haven't seen that from O'Malley at all, my politics are considerably further left than the dems. That said, O'Malley on climate change is excellent. Can he face the Koch machine?

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Response to elleng (Reply #18)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 06:19 PM

27. Thanks for this

All that and he's never held office in Washington DC. Who knew?

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Response to Rebkeh (Reply #14)

Mon Oct 26, 2015, 12:08 AM

51. Same here. I like O'Malley. I just like Sanders more.

 

I neither like not trust Clinton. The best I can say about her is that she's not a Republican, which, yeah, is just enough for me in the GE. But I'd rather have a person I want to vote for than a person I have to vote for.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:37 PM

4. If you believe that you don't have a choice, then you don't, you've given up your power.

Thanks for the thread, Rebkeh.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #4)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 06:37 PM

31. Like I have said before.

Now is the time for a real progressive populist movement, but the message needs to be clear and not overly complex and it needs to be repeated over and over to drive it home into the minds of the people.

Then Bernie will win.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #4)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 06:46 PM

32. Anytime, Uncle Joe n/t

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:40 PM

5. K&R nt

 

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:52 PM

6. "Do you believe it is possible to have the country we want? " NO!

 

The country you get is always a compromise with the country everybody else wants. That's the very definition of a Democratic Republic.

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #6)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:57 PM

9. Unfortunately, we are no longer a democracy.

We are an oligarchy. This is why we need a revolution to put someone in charge that is not part of the oligarchy. Bernie says he doesn't want money from millionaires and billionaires because that is not who he will serve. He wants to bring back democracy.

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Response to azmom (Reply #9)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:09 PM

12. Baloney

 

I still vote. I still campaign for the candidates of my choice.

For this to be an oligarchy, the voting must end.

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #12)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:16 PM

15. Voting has little to do with it. It's about power and control.

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Response to azmom (Reply #15)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:18 PM

16. Voting has EVERYTHING To do with it.

 

One name.

Eric Cantor.

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #16)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:24 PM

17. You have little influence. The system is corrupt.

In the study, “Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups and Average Citizens,” researchers compared 1,800 different U.S. policies that were put in place by politicians between 1981 and 2002 to the type of policies preferred by the average and wealthy American, or special interest groups.

Researchers then concluded that U.S. policies are formed more by special interest groups than by politicians properly representing the will of the general people, including the lower-income class.

“The central point that emerges from our research is that economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy, while mass-based interest groups and average citizens have little or no independent influence,” the study found.

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Response to azmom (Reply #15)

Mon Oct 26, 2015, 01:14 AM

52. Thanks for posting this link

I had seen it before and lost track of it, and the linked study in the article is amazingly well written and researched. Should be required reading.

http://journals.cambridge.org/download.php?file=%2FPPS%2FPPS12_03%2FS1537592714001595a.pdf&code=e40d65fc61c134913e3ad43a422129d3

Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups, and Average Citizens
Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page

What do our findings say about democracy in America? They certainly constitute troubling news for advocates of “populistic” democracy, who want governments to respond primarily or exclusively to the policy preferences of their citizens. In the United States, our findings indicate, the majority does not rule — at least not in the causal sense of actually determining policy outcomes. When a majority of citizens disagrees with economic elites or with organized interests, they generally lose. Moreover, because of the strong status quo bias built into the U.S. political system, even when fairly large majorities of Americans favor policy change, they generally do not get it.

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #12)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:38 PM

21. Game is rigged -

we have every reason to be suspicious given the Bush "victory" over Gore.

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #12)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:51 PM

25. Diebold comes to mind, election flipping a la oligarchy.

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #6)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:10 PM

13. That is actually a great point...

eom

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #6)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 06:35 PM

29. Like I have said before.

Now is the time for a real progressive populist movement, but the message needs to be clear and not overly complex and it needs to be repeated over and over to drive it home into the minds of the people.

Then Bernie will win.

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Response to WHEN CRABS ROAR (Reply #29)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:21 PM

36. .

 

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #6)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:26 PM

40. We have a country the Repubicans want, with a few exceptions

 

And unfortunately, on issues of wealth and power, they have had too much help from Democrats over the years.

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Response to Armstead (Reply #40)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:29 PM

42. That's pretty phoney baloney.

 

We are nowhere near the country the Republicans want.

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Response to MohRokTah (Reply #42)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:34 PM

44. With some exceptions. But....

 

the rich keep getting richer, corporations get fatter and happier and bigger without sharing their success with the majority of their employees, we have moved steadily down the path to privatization, regressive taxes and deregulation, we have unfettered "free trade," voting rights have been cut back...

Kind of seems like Ronald Reagan's fantasy come true.

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Response to Armstead (Reply #44)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:38 PM

45. Doctors aren't being executed for abortions.

 

Children are not being forced to say prayers each school day.

Black people can still vote.

Mexicans are not being rounded up and put into concentration camps. Neither are Muslims.

Biblical law is not the law of the land.

Homosexuals are not being rounded up for death camps.

Nope, we are nowhere near where the Republicans want this country to be.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:52 PM

7. K&R

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:55 PM

8. I believe you can ask 100 different people and get a 100 different answers to:

 

What kind of country do we want?

And I believe that is what makes America great.

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Response to JaneyVee (Reply #8)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 04:59 PM

10. I think we can all agree we want a representative

Democracy.

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Response to azmom (Reply #10)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:34 PM

20. Exactly

Where we don't agree is this: for whom is the government supposed to work?

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Response to Rebkeh (Reply #20)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:44 PM

24. The government no longer responds

To it's citizens. They have all sold us out to enrich themselves and their cronies. Bernie getting elected with small donations, and getting us involved will bring about tremendous changes.

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Response to azmom (Reply #24)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 11:50 PM

50. Agreed n/t

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Response to JaneyVee (Reply #8)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:31 PM

19. That wasn't my question though

Do you, personally, believe we can? I asked 'If,' not 'What.'

My answer to "what kind," though, is this:

We are currently trying to decide if we are country in which we are "all in it together" or are we a country of individuals looking out for #1?

The problem is we can no longer be both, we can try but we will continue to fail.

So, the question that follows is, 'who.' We have to decide who we are going to be.

I'm an "all in it together" kind of person.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:07 PM

11. Yes, for me the choice has been clear for quite some time.

The status quo and not as bad as are not a choice I will consider.

I believe we (as in the 99% of the people I know) can have the country we (as in the 99% of the people I know) want. I think the political revolution Bernie Sanders is promoting would be a giant leap toward that goal.

I'm with Bernie all the way.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 05:40 PM

22. I'm pretty sure it's rigged with the exception

that they may allow us to pick from least objectionable candidates.

So, I'm supporting Bernie just in case there's a chance.

We'll see if he makes it through the primary process.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 06:01 PM

26. You are presuming to know what "we" want and

loading your questions so that the only answer is supposed to be Bernie. I love Bernie and absolutely will support him if he wins the nomination. But I don't wish to be a party to your veiled campaign against Hillary.

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Response to OldHippieChick (Reply #26)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:02 PM

34. No veil and no campaign

I will vote democrat in the GE, regardless of who it is. Hillary would be good in many ways but I want better than good, I want great.

I presumed "we" progressives want progress, yes. No shame in that.

No, I was not loading the question. To provide the reasoning behind my personal answer is not the same as leaving only one answer available to everyone else.

But I was getting at a point, which is essentially the politics vs governance question we need to address.

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Response to OldHippieChick (Reply #26)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:21 PM

35. I think you are being quite harsh

and I don't why it would be so."presumptuous" to attribute a.common vision to a group of democrats.

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Response to whathehell (Reply #35)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 09:36 PM

46. Sorry. Perhaps I'm being overly sensitive.

As Bernie refuses to criticize Hillary, his supporters seem all too eager and will do so by any means necessary. Yes, most of us have a common vision, but some of us have a little moss on our backs and recognize reality.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 06:27 PM

28. This OP really captures something true

 

We see a lot of people praising Hillary for "winning" the inter-tribal fighting with Republicans . . . but engaging in it all is actually a "loss" for the people of this country. We have real issues to solve in this country and the solutions are pretty well known. But in order to get there we need to ask the public to engage politics seriously- not as a soap opera with fake outrage and well timed tears or a sports game with winners and losers.

At least Obama can keep his affairs in order (pun intended) enough to just avoid 90% of this stuff and keep the discussion somewhat serious.

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Response to left lowrider (Reply #28)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 10:39 PM

48. Thank you,

That is what I was getting at. Or trying to, anyway.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 06:36 PM

30. Good luck to you youngins.

The Boomers failed.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 06:51 PM

33. I feel we have some power in making it more like how we want it.

Particularly on a personal and local level. In how we behave toward others and how we live our day to day lives. There has always been tribalism, wealth inequality, violence, racism, sexism, homophobia. In every country throughout history.

On a political level, we need more voter participation and a strong grassroots movement toward more inclusive policies. Long term. Policies that are more humane, more fair and more just than what we have now. I believe it's needed in every aspect: local, state and federal.

Every country faces massive challenges. History is struggle. Most advanced countries have mixed economies, with elements of capitalism and elements of socialism. The USA leans more toward the pure capitalist realm than any other industrialized country. I believe most people will benefit if we move more toward the democratic socialist realm on specific matters like health care, prison reform, tax policy and breaking up the big banks.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:23 PM

37. Amen -- Great OP

 

On the money

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:24 PM

38. Achieving the dream

will be very difficult...without the policies espoused by Senator Sanders, achieving the dream will be impossible...Who do you want nominating Supreme Court justices?


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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:26 PM

39. i don't think it will happen in my lifetime.

wish i could say i did. peace? hmmm. doesn't seem as if that will ever happen. but i still believe in advocating for both. can't just give up.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:28 PM

41. Bernie is appealing to the Puritopians

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Response to wyldwolf (Reply #41)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 11:44 PM

49. I'm sure he is

But Bernie supporters are a varied group, not all of them fit that description. I certainly don't. Not even close, I think we can afford to be idealistic prior to the primary election. After that, I concede that we must play the cards we are dealt. In the meantime, go big or go home.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 07:31 PM

43. 4-8 months?????

Rebkeh ... this country as been evolving SLOWLY for over 200 years now.

The founders designed our government so that it would evolve slowly. They did not want a government that would run off half-cocked at every turn.

As for being progressive ... perhaps you have missed the Obama Presidency. We've actually made a great deal of progress against a tremendous amount of opposition. If you can't see that, then you do not understand this nation or its history.

We (on the left) can have the country we want ... but its not happening in the next 4-8 months, or even 4-8 years. We have to control the national elections ... then win the major states and their 2 senators ... then marginalize the many low population red districts who pick insane house members.

If you think this is all going to change by electing Bernie ... I'm sorry but it just is not happening. Its going to take much much more than that.





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Response to JoePhilly (Reply #43)

Sun Oct 25, 2015, 10:31 PM

47. 4-8 months

Until the primary election, I should have been clearer. I thought it was implied.

So your answer to my question is no, apparently. Or, is it yes but with (over) caution?

Of course it will take more than one guy and one election - it will take years to progress to where we want to be, that's obvious. My point is that with Bernie, it's a start. A Sanders presidency would begin the change we need as he is not part of the establishment. Change from within the establishment, if it even exists, is not nearly enough. Let's not neglect this opportunity to make authentic progress, the window closes the day after the primary election results are in. If we want it, we can have it.

On the other hand, a Hillary presidency wouldn't change much of anything, not in that sense. She would make a few welcome alterations to social policy at most. She is, no matter what she says, more of the same - Wall St and corporations would continue to have disproportionate power. There is no reason to believe otherwise. The climate change issue - she would take on the Kochs? I find that very hard to believe. Private prisons? Big pharma? Neoliberalism is not progressive. If we are going to call for progress, why settle for Hillary when we can have Sanders?

How slow do you want to go, anyway? And why? I think we can pick up the pace, people literally are dying. It goes in fits and starts, ebbs and flows, sometimes it even leaps. We are primed for such a leap now - take it.

As for Obama, even though he wasn't exactly what I would have wanted, I proudly voted for him. Twice! And I would do it again because he was the right person at that particular time. We needed the hope, now let's get to change.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Mon Oct 26, 2015, 01:42 AM

53. The choice is very clear! And more and more people are making that choice!!

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Mon Oct 26, 2015, 05:26 AM

54. No. How long have you lived here?

I was beaten -- really beaten pretty badly -- for doing a science fair project on allele shifts in Drosophila, in 10th grade, because a keyword included in the précis was "evolution".

"We" will not have the country "we" want for a long time, because we're a relatively small part of the population here, and we are working in a political coalition that doesn't entirely trust "us". Not that "our" track record is much better than "theirs", when either of us are left in charge.

This is a messy, slow country, and it takes about a mile of push to get even an inch of results.

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Response to Rebkeh (Original post)

Mon Oct 26, 2015, 09:51 AM

55. We need paper ballots and a sustained political revolution. Then, yes. nt

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