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Member since: 2002
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A friend just sent this me and I see no lies…

Face It Sanders Fans, You’d Turn On Bernie In a Heartbeat If He Actually Won the White House

Chez Pazienza on September 09, 2015

It’s tough not to admire Bernie Sanders. He’s a ferocious advocate for his constituents and the middle and working class as well as a guy willing to openly identify as a socialist in a country that’s always considered that a dirty word. Sanders is a genuinely decent guy and his voice in the Senate has been an invaluable one. He doesn’t mince words or pander and he doesn’t worry about much other than representing voters to the best of his abilities and sticking to his political guns as best he can. Even if you disagree with his worldview he deserves a good amount of respect for walking the walk in terms of being a man of the people.

With all of this in mind it’s easy to see why Sanders has a legion of supporters for his 2016 presidential campaign — and why those supporters are largely the kind of people you’ve already unfriended on Facebook because they won’t shut the fuck up about how Bernie is the Great Liberal Messiah come to save us all. The Sanders fanatics are hands-down the most insufferably self-righteous among the politically motivated these days, proudly aiming hosannas in the direction of any word that tumbles out of their candidates’s mouth and touting each and every poll that shows him gaining ground as proof that America is “feeling the Bern” and turning its back on literally everything it’s voted for up to this point in its history. Sanders is a far better person than, say, a Ralph Nader — at the very least he’s running because he genuinely wants to do good and not simply to hear the sound of his own voice — but his supporters love him for the same reason the left loves anyone who forcefully speaks anti-establishment shibboleths: because they believe anything else to be hopelessly corrupt, the product of a broken system.

But here’s the problem: The office of the President of the United States is arguably the most establishment position in the world and anyone who ascends to it automatically becomes the head of a machine the left, by its very nature, dislikes and doesn’t trust. The left, certainly the strain of the left that would get behind someone like Bernie Sanders, is notoriously anti-authoritarian and while this doesn’t necessarily mean it wouldn’t be thrilled to see Sanders become the ultimate authority, it would make it suspicious of his intentions and actions from that point forward. The benefit of the doubt likely wouldn’t last for very long and former acolytes would quickly become attuned to signs of betrayal. And that betrayal would absolutely arrive at some point.

If there’s anything we’ve learned from the presidency of Barack Obama it’s that a lot of self-described progressives are petulant children for whom no candidate will ever be good enough, fair-weather friends who are more than happy to support a candidate but who turn up their noses as soon as he or she is put in a position of actual governance. See, there’s no such thing as an elected official who will give you everything you want, and more than any other partisan bent it’s the left that reacts terribly to not getting every single thing it wants. The left loves to ignore inconvenient political reality — and the impact of political reality is simply an inevitability for elected officials.


The Breakdown…

First of all, I want to thank all of you for having confidence in my point of view regarding the letter. Just to let you know, I'm pretty opened minded about the reasons that someone may disagree with what I'm about to say, but I reserve the right to judge whether or not what is said makes any sense. I'm not going to sit here and deal with straw man arguments and faulty logic. The signs are all there and I'm quite aware that I may not come up with all of the answers.

I'm going to try to be fair.

Secondly, I'm going to make some references to this excellent Salon article, http://www.salon.com/2015/04/10/white_americas_racial_illiteracy_why_our_national_conversation_is_poisoned_from_the_start_partner/ as part of my rationale.

That said, let's get started:

Number One, the obvious: Whomever sent this letter was trying to send a message. This is part of the communication process and all the elements are there. You have the message, you have the sender of that message (writer), you have the receiver of that message (Bravenak) and you have a clearly explained expectation of feedback, which we will get to. The message had a specific purpose that the writer (sender) as trying to get across and we'll examine that as well. But most of all, I intend to demonstrate clear motive and technique.

My first impression is that the writer is relatively cogent. Despite the tone and the use of invectives, we're dealing with a writer who was direct and communicated their intentions thusly. Let's not try and read too much into the message being sent (divide and conquer, false flag and other such nonsense). The letter as written was clearly done to be taken as face value. I'll explain this as we go along. Most of all, I really have no reason to think that it was written by some knuckle-dragger… No grunts.

Part one the address:


The first question that you have to ask is, why did the writer take the time to address Bravenak by her user name, especially since he knows her IRL name and even wrote that on the envelope?

There's two things to consider here. The first being so obvious that the writer wanted to establish the fact that he's personally connected one name to the other. This was an explicit demonstration that the writer knows who the Bravenak is and he knows her IRL name. Clearly a form of intimidation, as her confidentiality is now being violated.

The second part is a reestablishment of a previous encounter. The writer is establishing the fact that they've had a previous encounter. He's using her DU user name, which implies that the previous encounter happened on DU, from one DU member to another. He mentions DU later on in the letter, which excludes an encounter elsewhere, like of Twitter. As shown later on in the letter as well, the writer is clearly demonstrating his personal own sense of dominance over Bravenak through implicit intimidation in a particular arena. By addressing her by her user name, he has established that DU is in fact that arena. He's not as concerned about IRL.

Part Two, sentence one of the first para:

We grew tired of your race baiting bullshit
against the only candidate that cares
about the plight of minorities and the 99%.

He's writing the letter to her personally. We already can figure out that he doesn't like her at all, so why has he used the personal pronoun "We?" There are two ways to look at this: One, he's either a self-appointed representative of the group that he identifies with, or, two, he's inferring that he has accomplices. I'm leaning towards choice number one. Mostly because of the fact that the letter was written, dripping with an aura of white male entitlement and white fragility. To this writer, this is personal. He's in protective mode here.

This also is a direct attempt to isolate Bravenak. He's pointing out the fact that he has others who are like minded. He has sympathetic friends and they're all aligned against her. This theme continues throughout the letter. Obviously, he feels this way because he's identified similar attitudes to his own throughout the various discussions. Please make a not of that.

The "race baiting" accusation is clearly a demonstration of the writer experiencing race-based stress. To the writer, Bravenak's opinions about race and how racial matters relate to his candidate of choice must not be allowed. From the Salon article:

This systemic and institutional control allows those of us who are white in North America to live in a social environment that protects and insulates us from race-based stress. We have organized society to reproduce and reinforce our racial interests and perspectives. Further, we are centered in all matters deemed normal, universal, benign, neutral and good. Thus, we move through a wholly racialized world with an unracialized identity (e.g. white people can represent all of humanity, people of color can only represent their racial selves).

Challenges to this identity become highly stressful and even intolerable. The following are examples of the kinds of challenges that trigger racial stress for white people:

Suggesting that a white person’s viewpoint comes from a radicalized frame of reference (challenge to objectivity);

People of color talking directly about their own racial perspectives (challenge to white taboos on talking openly about race);

People of color choosing not to protect the racial feelings of white people in regards to race (challenge to white racial expectations and need/entitlement to racial comfort);

People of color not being willing to tell their stories or answer questions about their racial experiences (challenge to the expectation that people of color will serve us);

A fellow white not providing agreement with one’s racial perspective (challenge to white solidarity);

Receiving feedback that one’s behavior had a racist impact (challenge to white racial innocence);

Suggesting that group membership is significant (challenge to individualism);

An acknowledgment that access is unequal between racial groups (challenge to meritocracy);

Being presented with a person of color in a position of leadership (challenge to white authority);

Being presented with information about other racial groups through, for example, movies in which people of color drive the action but are not in stereotypical roles, or multicultural education (challenge to white centrality).

Rather than being allowed to voice her own opinion as a equally valid one, the writer has made it clear that Bravenak should be expressing a sense of appreciation towards Bernie instead. After all, how dare she… A mere black woman, question Bernie? To the writer, she obviously doesn't know her place. So, he wrote this letter to fix the situation.

Part Three, sentences 2 and 3

You and your fucking "I really like Bernie"
bullshit. So you got 4 hides in one day. You
deserved more.

If anything, these sentences show how much the writer is invested in Bernie. To him, no true supporter of Sanders would EVER question his positions on any matter at all, much less anything about race and coming from a mere black woman. The fact that she did dare to question Bernie meant that she deserved to be harshly punished for it. He's demonstrating his sense of righteous indignation fulfilled, even somewhat insufficiently in his own opinion.

He's expressing his own raw sense of anger and righteous indignation. He also made sure to notify Bravenak that he was paying close attention to how she was treated for her apparent offense. This would imply that he had a direct role in alerting on her posts. He didn't admit it, but he has been monitoring her. Who other than a DUer would maintain such close accounting on the inner workings of the site?

When you come off your suspension, you keep
running your fucking mouth, guarantee you're
going to get alerted on and suspended again.
We'll make a point of it. There's a hell of a lot
more of us than there is of you. So I suggest
you dial it back a whole fucking bunch.

Again this is another indication that the writer and others of like mind plan on monitoring her and will engage in further concerted efforts against her. Another reference to others and their actions speaks to collusion. This is a direct threat and a tacit statement that, in regards to her own opinions, she had no rights that they're bound to tolerate. This is an establishment of privileged ownership of DU as well. Black voices are not welcome here to them, unless those voices are completely and utterly supportive of the writer's preferred candidate. Otherwise, the offending party is to be made an example of.

That is the specific type of feedback that the writer was calling for in his message: Submit or be punished.

Part Four, The Sign Off.


Mr. Citizen
DU Member

I want to used this part of the letter to reinforce my contention that the writer is a member of the site and not some outsider troll:

All three elements point to this.

1. "GO BERNIE!!!" - We shouldn't expect outside trolls care about Bernie. As someone coming to his defense, why would anyone else outside of a Bernie supporting DUer care what anyone on this site said about Bernie? Bernie is not the struggle of RW trolls. To them, all Democrats are bad. Rather than specifying Bernie as a singular point of contention, someone not invested in a single candidate would tend to generalize. A fake DUer would a point of criticizing Bravenak for making questionable comments about any of the candidates. Only Bernie matters to the writer, which would indicate that he regularly expresses contempt towards the others, Hillary especially.

2. "Mr. Citizen" - He clearly establishing a sense of patriarchal dominance here, which coincides with the way he established ownership and identification with the site as well. He's not just a "Citizen," he's own a title which establishes his role, as place in the hierarchy over that of Bravenak.

3. "DU Member" - More reinforcement of the same theme that was played out through the letter.

Outside RW Trolls do not care who any particular DUer would support. Again, to them, they're all bad.

Next, trolls operate on a strict time-line that's singularly scheduled for instant gratification. The letter writer took the time to uncover Bravenak's real name, type the letters, address them and send them to her. That meant that the writer was being deliberate. Where's the instant payoff in that?

This letter wasn't meant for general consumption, because there was absolutely no guarantee that Bravenak would show the letters off on line. Had she chose not to show the letters off, none of us would be having this conversation. If she had not chosen to show the letters off, an attempt to divide and conquer DUers against each other would have never happened. Such a campaign against the site, through her, would have failed.

The letter reached the only intended target, Bravenak, not the site in general. Outsider trolls would only target a specific DUer unless that DUer could be made an example of to the rest of the membership.

This letter is another phase in an ongoing, internecine conflict on DU. It's part of DUers targeting other DUers, an extension of the way that DUers, especially against those members of color who are daring to speak their own mind, who are being marginalized through the jury system. The letter made several direct references to that fact, with guarantees that such harassment is bound to continue. Outsiders, especially people who are political outliers, have no way to count on DUers in general to vote in juries a specific way.

Everything here points to a single, white male, Bernie supporting member, apparently one living in Florida (Or perhaps colluding with someone living in Florida.) A person who felt entitled enough to write the letters, send them to Bravenak, attempted to conceal his identity with the use of phony return addresses, expressed contempt for anyone who dared not support his candidate of choice, felt confident enough to point out that he has allies who will collude with his own campaign against black DUers, believed that he can use his own sense of white fragility as a justification to target prominent black members of the site and felt confident enough in his own efforts to believe that he'll be generally supported by a majority of other members and get away with it.

Again, I call for this person, or persons responsible to be identified and their membership removed.

Attacking any member in such a threatening way should not be tolerated at all.

Lastly, if I've missed something, I'd love to hear it from you. I wrote this while I was somewhat tired, so please forgive whatever tiepoze I've missed. I'll fix them later, after I wake up.

Right now, it's good night, sweet prince.

Thanks again and I'll catch you all later.


The matter of the writer's gender: man or woman?

Let's go back to the overall tone of the letter; it's both direct and straight forward. The only real reason why the writer would want to hide their identity is the fact that, if they were identified, they would most assuredly lose their own precious DU membership.

Men and whites make up the majority members on this board and since the writer had set an aggressively dominant tone against a woman, the angle there was to tell Bravenak that she's outnumbered on this forum and nothing more.

After being direct throughout the entire text, what would be the point of misdirecting the reader over the matter of gender? The writer going straightforward and writing down their own true angry feelings and intent, only to do a 180 over the matter of their own gender and write a "Mr." instead of a "Ms" makes absolutely no sense at all.

Now one other thought that I had. Notice that the only threat against Bravenak in the letter was one against her own membership status. Although the whole point of the letter was to intimidate her, no physical harm was inferred. This should be important to consider.

Not threatening physical harm lessens the legal liability against the writer. It's still harassment, but not in an overtly physical way. We're only talking about Bravenak's DU membership. In matters of online harassment, without threats of physical harm ("I'm going to shoot you in your fucking face," and shit like that), recourses are normally deferred to admins and owners of the particular site.

I'm quite sure that the writer intentionally chose to write it that way. Like I said before, we're not dealing with a knuckle dragger here. What we're actually dealing with is an angry asshole with race and patriarchy fragility issues.

Again, this is an angle that points to the culprit being a member. Outside trolls aren't that concerned about forcing members off of a site in which they're not, themselves, members. Outside trolls would rather be outside of the site that they're trolling. When they do sign up to troll, they know full well that their time is limited and their ability to harass will be stopped by the mods once they're discovered. A member of this site can't just create another identity and use that to troll, they know that something like that would violate the TOS and, once again, they would lose their precious DU membership. The poison pen letter was a more cowardly and less risky way to get their point across.

Bravenak's membership status would be only another member's concern. Writing the letter was clearly a direct act of intentional disassociation from within a shared confine.

The Letter…

Quite a few people have it in their minds that the letters sent to Bravenak were done by outsiders who are trying to divide and conquer, false flags and the such.

I don't think so, because I've actually read the letter.

I'm considering doing a step-by-step break down of it; not to name the writer, but to identity the letter writer's intent.

It's all there.

Should I give it a shot?

Night Music #119 1989 Leonard Cohen, Sonny Rollins, Ken Nordine, Was (Not Was)

Was (Not Was) - Tell Me That I'm Dreaming

Kid Creole & The Coconuts - Stool Pigeon

Airto & Flora Purim - Live In São Paulo / Brazil, 1988

Tom Tom Club - L'Elephant

By Tom Tom Club
© 1981
(transcription by Stephane Osstyn
corrections, notes and English translation by Tina Weymouth)

L'éléphant et l'hippopotame
(The elephant and the hippopotamus)

(Se) Sont déguisés en hommes.
(Disguised themselves as men.)

(Ils) Ont marché au beau village,
(They walked to the beautiful village,)

Marché, marché, marché, marché.
(Walked, walked, walked, walked)

Sur le chemin, (ils) ont rencontré
(On the path, they met)

Des enfants des hommes,
(The children of men)

Et des femmes qui courraient
(And women, who were running,)

Courraient, courraient, courraient, courraient.
(Running, running, running, running)

Tout en courrant, les femmes pleuraient
(As they ran, the women were crying,)

Pleuraient des grosses larmes
(Crying fat tears.)

Grosses gouttes, grosses larmes
(Large drops, big fat tears, were)

Tombaient, tombaient, tombaient, tombaient.
(Falling, falling, falling, falling)

L'éléphant et l'hippopotame
(The elephant and the hippopotamus)

Voulaient savoir ce qu'elles avaient
(Wanted to know what was the matter,)

Voulaient savoir la raison qu'elles
(Wanted to know the reason they were)

Pleuraient, pleuraient, pleuraient, pleuraient.
(Crying, crying, crying, crying.)

Un enfant, tout terrifié,
(A terrified child)

S'est arrêté pour leur parler.
(Stopped to speak with them.)

Sa bouche ouvrait, mais il est resté
(His mouth opened, but he remained)

Muet, muet, muet, muet.
(Mute, mute, mute, mute.)

*Enlevez vos costumes bêtes,
(*"Take off your foolish/beastly costumes,"

Leur chantaient les oiseaux.
(Sang to them the birds.)

**Gobe-mouches pipits, chouettes et hiboux
(**Pipits, screech owls, and owls were)

Chantaient, chantaient, chantaient, chantaient:
(Singing, singing, singing, singing: )

C'est la guerre, la guerre des hommes.
("It is war, the war of men.)

Ils se sont disputés.
(They have quarreled among themselves.)

Tout autour, ils veulent tuer,
(All around, they want to kill,)

Tuer, tuer, tuer, tuer.
(Kill, kill, kill, kill)

Tuer, tuer, tuer, tuer.
(Kill, kill, kill, kill)

Tuer, tuer, tuer, tuer.
(Kill, kill, kill, kill)

Tuer, tuer, tuer, tuer.
(Kill, kill, kill, kill)

Tuer, tuer, tuer, tuer.
(Kill, kill, kill, kill)

Talking Heads - This Must Be The Place

The Tom Tom Club - Pleasure Of Love

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