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dreamnightwind's Journal
dreamnightwind's Journal
December 31, 2015

Interesting OP

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.

I'm pretty sure both Soros and Steyer are suppporting Hillary (certain about Steyer, not about Soros).

My feeling is the party establishment and their wealthy donors are largely opposing any leftward shift, sticking instead to the priorities of business and empire.

On the ground, different story, many people are waking up to the reality that the party has largely been captured by those interests, and are working to correct this.

In my opinion, if Hillary wins it will be a huge step towards the end of the viability of the party. Policies will serve donors rather than voters, the RW will gain cred by pointing this out (though their policies are slightly worse, it won't stop them from hypocritically pointing out her actions in favor of donors), and the young will not see the party as a vehicle of change or of representing their interests.

The party has to change or a large powerful force may open to its left, enabling Republican electoral victories as the emergent left grows to a size large enough to win national elections.

It would all work itself out in time, problem is we don't have time, we have a global uprising against our imperial actions, and we have rapidly accelerating irreversible climate change that demands radical change and committment.

We need leaders who stand firmly against powerful MIC, fossil fuel, and financial system interests, NOW, which requires electing leaders without their money.

Bernie's campaign is a great opportunity, and I hope we don't waste it. Thanks for the OP and all of your efforts here!
December 30, 2015

Anecdotal, I live in norcal redwood forest

(western Sonoma county) and had a tree trimmer climbing my (over) 200 foot redwood trees earlier today, removing the dead limbs before the winds come and bring them down on the house.

Our land has probably never been this dry since the house was built, which was over 90 years ago. The dryness has caused some land shift (I guess it shrinks some as it dries, impacted my carport in a bad way but I'm in the process of fixing that).

Anyway, the tree climber/trimmer, who is not technically an arborist but has a lifetime of experience working with these trees, says my trees (I use the possessive pronoun loosely, the trees are on the home's land but I never actually think of them as mine, they will outlive me and owning them seems absurd) are dry but in excellent shape.

I was shocked, I was expecting really bad news given the severity of this drought. These redwoods are incredibly resilient.

Some of the douglas firs in the neighborhood are not faring as well, some neighbors are out a lot of money to remove them before they fall, I've only seen a few trees felled though.

From the map you posted (very interesting graphic!), it looks like the worst of it is in the western Sierras, which would only very rarely be redwoods. The redwoods are able to get some of their water requirements from the coastal fog we get, up there in the Sierras the trees are probably more dependent on rainfall.

Anyway, some regions of California and its trees are in really bad shape, many other parts of the state are doing well enough, considering.

Looks like a wet winter, finally. I got over 10" rain (my estimate) in December, a good sign. Usually 40" here is ok, and some years I've had over 100". The stream in my backyard is making great sounds again, mostly absent for the last 5 years or so.

Just a report from one location. Thanks for the OP! Here's hoping for a long wet winter.

December 30, 2015

I tend to disagree with this assessment

though I agree that he was in a position to make a difference and didn't while in the Clinton administration. I have read his words and watched him speak (TV, Youtube) many times over the last 10 years or so. I am no apologist for corporatists or financial deregulators, quite the opposite. In my opinion Reich is sincerely and doggedly working to reign in the runaway financial industry, and to bring us to a more equitable and just society. His voice is consistent and persistent, guided by a heart that is in the right place and the wisdom of knowing the system from the inside.

I recently got into a (mostly worthless) DU discussion over whether to give Hillary such benefit of the doubt as someone who has seen the light and is working for actual reform that favors the 99%. I completely reject that possibility. In my opinion she positions herself for political expediency and makes no challenges to power interests, instead considering them her base.

Reich, in my view, is an example of someone that actually came out of it on the other side, from the halls of power to working in our interests from the outside. I trust him about as much as I trust anyone in this political world, save Bernie or Warren, who have long and loud histories of going up against wealth and power.

I don't think of him as a traitor at all. He was part of a team (and what precise role he had in those dynamics is something I wonder about, Summers was obviously the alpha deregulator) in the 90's that did join wth Newt, Greenspan, etc., to deregulate the financial industry. So in that way you could call him a traitor. But I see him more as someone who was there, participated, saw the consequences of those policies, and has for some time now been putting his energy into advocating for the actual reforms we need to fix things. He's an excellent spokeperson for where we need to go, and throwing him out as a traitor is to waste a great resource and an excellent man. YMMV, of course.

December 5, 2015

K & R, and yes Sanders is the antidote to this

Also, we need to use his campaign as a model for future candidates. Even if he loses to Hillary (which I don't concede), she is a formidable candidate with advantages few other candidates will ever have again.

We now have a model for a national campaign that can compete without corporate money. It needs to be improved on, we have to work on how to effectively fight back against a corporate controlled media that will back the corporate candidates. I think the Sanders campaign, and his followers, have made a lot of progress in that regard, though it's still a work in progress.

Let's see some other serious candidates run this way, we can stigmatize accepting corporate money (as we should) and counter with a crowd-funded and social media promoted campaign.

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