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RiverLover

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Gender: Female
Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Dec 1, 2011, 12:59 PM
Number of posts: 7,830

About Me

FDR Populist Progressive who believes the environment trumps all. We\'re sinking the only ship we\'ve got, and govt leaders are ignoring it.

Journal Archives

Trump's bizarre popularity - the sanest explanation I've seen

The Atlantic
3/2/16

Donald Trump: The Protector

He will make you safe. He will give you health care. He will give you jobs. He will build a wall. Protecting you is his prime directive.



Like many people, I have been wondering: What on Earth explains Donald Trump’s remarkable appeal to voters?


I’ve come to the conclusion that the answer is fairly simple. The message of his Republican opponents has effectively been: We are more faithful to conservative principles. Trump’s message has been entirely different. He essentially says: I will protect you. I’m conservative, but if protecting you requires jettisoning conservative ideology, I will do so. Protecting you is the prime directive. This message has powerful resonance, especially for voters who feel the Republican Party has failed to protect their interests.

You see this pattern in all of Trump’s deviations from conservative orthodoxy. Take the debate over Planned Parenthood. Like all conservatives, Trump opposes abortions. But he stresses he does not want to stop funding their wonderful work protecting women from cervical and breast cancer. The other Republican candidates simply express a desire to destroy Planned Parenthood outright. Trump’s message to voters: The other candidates will adhere rigidly to ideology, even if it needlessly fails to protect millions of women from cancer. I won’t.

Or consider the debate over Obamacare. Again, like all conservatives, Trump promises to repeal and replace it. But he stresses that he is not going to let poor people die because they lack access to health care. The other candidates say: Aha! Trump is not a purist opponent of government-funded health care. Neither Trump nor his opponents offer many specifics, but the message to voters is that at least Trump’s goal is to protect them from the financial burdens of Obamacare without sacrificing their health. His opponents suggest their goal is just the ideological purge of Obamacare, regardless of the health implications.

On campaign financing, Trump’s message is basic: I am financing myself, so you can trust me to protect you because I will be beholden to no one other than the people who elected me. You can’t trust these other guys to protect you, no matter how good what they say might sound, because they will protect whoever paid for their campaigns...

..........Free trade is great, Trump says, but it has to be fair. His opponents just adhere to pure free trade, which does increase the economic pie. But economic research shows that free trade harms some subsets of voters, particularly the working-class voters flocking to Trump. The message to his voters: I will favor free trade only to the extent that I can protect you from harm, perhaps by compensating you using the gains of trade. My opponents will favor free trade even if it harms you.

Much the same goes for taxes and entitlements. Trump says he will cut taxes but not cut Medicare and Social Security, while the others favor cutting both. His message to voters: Only I value protecting your retirement benefits over tax cuts.

Read in full~
http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/03/donald-trump-the-protector/471837/


Thanks for nothing, Elizabeth Warren: How the Democratic Party’s rock star missed her chance....

Salon
3/1/2016

Thanks for nothing, Elizabeth Warren: How the Democratic Party’s rock star missed her chance, hurt the progressive agenda
*************************************
The appetite was there for a truly progressive candidate to topple the Clinton machine.

That candidate did not run


Elizabeth Warren could have been the biggest political story of 2016. Well, at least, the biggest story other than Donald Trump. Right now, she could have been coasting toward a Super Tuesday landslide and locking up the Democratic nomination. It doesn’t take a wild imagination to picture it.

Instead, Warren is nowhere to be found, unless you’re a Democratic donor on the receiving end of DNC email blasts signed by the Massachusetts senator. Raising money like this — or lending her name to these emails — might be her biggest contribution to the Democrats in the 2016 cycle. And unfortunately, that’s why Super Tuesday is likely to seal the nomination for Hillary Clinton tonight.

My point is not to relitigate Clinton vs. Bernie Sanders for the millionth time. That argument closed in Nevada, and screamed to a halt in South Carolina. Hillary Clinton will make a Democratic candidate in the same mold as her husband or Al Gore or John Kerry. If elected president, she’ll likely carry on the Obama legacy, appointing the right Supreme Court justices and blocking the worst excesses of the gerrymandered Republican Congress, while also remaining the same politician who served as the senator from Goldman Sachs and toured war zones with Lindsey Graham and John McCain. Even most of Clinton’s harshest critics from the left would pinch their noses and vote for her in a contest against Donald Trump.

Bernie Sanders ran a near-perfect race to make it this close, but was never likely to overcome Clinton’s superdelegate and electoral map advantages without more debates and a stronger, sharper performance in them.

What Sanders did, however, was demonstrate that with a different messenger — one willing to draw sharp contrasts, perhaps someone who was not a wild-haired socialist in his ’70s from Vermont — the appetite was there in 2016 for a truly progressive candidate to capture the Democratic nomination.

That candidate did not run.

Progressives of a pessimistic bent might feel that they just missed a once in a generation opportunity to reorient the Democratic Party.

Had Warren run, you could make the case that she would have swept to the nomination.
A February 2015 MoveOn poll found that 79 percent of Iowa and New Hampshire Democrats wanted Warren to enter the presidential race, and showed Warren polling higher than Clinton in both states.

Keep in mind that this was well before Sanders’ summer surge, when the Vermont senator had single-digit support in most polls.....

Read the rest~
http://www.salon.com/2016/03/01/thanks_for_nothing_elizabeth_warren_how_the_democratic_partys_rock_star_missed_her_chance_hurt_the_progressive_agenda/

Its a moot point now, but I agree with this article. I often say to myself, "Thanks a lot Elizabeth" when I think on how the massively corrupt conservative third way Clinton2 has taken over the party. Total control.

People love Elizabeth. The media loves her. I've never witnessed a more effective speaker. She is sharp & on point & dynamic & quick on her feet, she would have nailed this thing.

Hillary will lose to Donald in the GE. But we have lost the party.

Hey if you are cool with off shoring American jobs, underpaid service jobs left, endless war, wall

street gambling with the American taxpayer there to bail them out when they crash the economy again, monopolies, charter schools, privatization of everything,etc I say, well, I say what the OP says.

You are the victim. Of the long con. They're laughing all the way to the bank...wait they own the banks...all the way to Monte Carlo on their yachts....dreaming of when they can replace us all with robots most likely. Everyone's got a dream!

The People's Candidate raises close to $40 mill in February (WE're his SuperPAC!!)


Sanders campaign aims for $40 million month

By Nick Gass

02/29/16 07:10 AM EST

Bernie Sanders' campaign is seeking to raise just under $4 million on Monday, the deadline for the Federal Election Commission's monthly reporting deadline. That amount, according to fundraising totals announced by the campaign, would give the Vermont senator's effort $40 million in February.

From the time he declared his candidacy last April through January, Sanders raised $94.8 million from more than 3 million individual contributors. The campaign eclipsed the 4 million mark in February, raising a shade over $36 million in the month as of Monday morning.

Sanders has pointed to his campaign's disavowal of super PACs and large-money contributions throughout the course of the campaign, doing a well-worn call-and-response with supporters in Minnesota on Saturday evening about the average donation to the campaign — $27.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/blogs/2016-dem-primary-live-updates-and-results/2016/02/bernie-sanders-campaign-2016-219951#ixzz41YoBLo00

He's bought alright. This purchased politician will have to work for We, The People now!! Just like he wanted.

USA!!

Clinton +3 in NC!



Just like Ohio, Trump will turn the state blazing RED.

He's the one talking about bringing back American manufacturing.

Which has gone away because of Clinton1.

WAKE UP PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!

FDR won back then, against the wall street dems. That's what's different. New Deal Dems/FDR Dems

are no longer represented by this third way "New Democrat" party that the Clintons started.

With Clinton2, we'll have continued endless war for profit, mass incarceration for profit, charter schools, privatized everything, wall street writing their own rules & risking our economy with taxpayer money,off shoring of American jobs, monopolies, corporations not paying their taxes so we continue to subsidize them while they send our jobs overseas to pay slave wages & make more money for 1%, more cuts to SNAP, etc.

The trade deals made by Democratic presidents, against most Dems in congress & with the help of repubs in congress, have turned the US into a service economy, with retail jobs that don't pay a living wage.

And you want more....hurts so good, does it?

It isn't hatred of Hillary, its hatred of what these third way dems have done to our party & our country.

"...If this were any other country, we’d be quick to call this a CORRUPT ELECTION."

February 26, 2016
Common Dreams
Antidote to DNC Bias Against Bernie Is Massive Grassroots Turnout
by Howard Friel

Before supporters of Bernie Sanders vote in the Super Tuesday primaries on March 1, their candidate will already be behind Hillary Clinton in the participating states.

This is because the superdelegate count in those states already favors Clinton over Sanders as follows: Alabama (3 to 0), Arkansas (5 to 0), Colorado (10 to 0), Georgia (11 to 0), Massachusetts (17 to 1), Minnesota (11 to 1), Oklahoma (1-1), Tennessee (6 to 0), Texas (18 to 0), Vermont (4 to 3), and Virginia (11 to 0).

Even in his home state of Vermont, where Sanders holds a 75 point lead in the polls, he is behind in the superdelegate count.

In Massachusetts, where Sanders leads in the polls by 3.5 points, Clinton leads in superdelegates by 17 to 1.



.....Who are the superdelegates, exactly? A recent New York Times’ editorial identified them as “party bigwigs—712 Democratic leaders, legislators, governors, and the like.”

But that’s not the whole story. The majority of superdelegates are actually DNC members. And the DNC superdelegates (432) outnumber senators (46), members of the House of Representatives (193), governors (20), and “distinguished members” (21) combined. In fact, all DNC members—that is, the unelected political apparatus of the Democratic party—are voting superdelegates.

Lee Fang at The Intercept has identified a number of DNC superdelegates: one works for the Clinton campaign and is a former lobbyist for a private prison group and for TransCanada to build support for the Keystone XL pipeline; another works for Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation; three DNC superdelegates, writes Fang, are officials at “a lobbying firm that is closely affiliated with the Clinton campaign and retained by the Clinton-supporting Super PACs Priorities USA Action and Correct the Record.”

Fang also reported that the same firm “was retained by the health insurance industry to undermine health reform efforts in 2009, including proposals to change Medicare Advantage,” and that the firm had “previously worked to influence policy on behalf of Enron, Countrywide, Citigroup, Coca-Cola, the U.S. Telecom Association and News Corporation.”

Another DNC superdelegate is a lobbyist registered to work on behalf of “the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, a trade group for Wall Street firms such as Goldman Sachs, Fidelity, and Bank of America.”

This is a small number of DNC superdelegates (although Fang lists more). But it’s difficult to find out what the other 400-plus DNC superdelegates actually do—either inside or outside the DNC.

Clinton’s huge advantage in superdelegates reflects a playing field tilted against Sanders by party officials who have a say in both the superdelegate vote and the conduct of primary elections, especially caucuses.

“One of the main differences between a caucus and a primary is that a caucus is organized by the political parties, whereas a primary is organized usually by the state board of elections as a regular election would be.” This statement comes from a 2016 New Hampshire state public service announcement, and it may explain why two of the first three momentum-generating primary elections are caucuses.

In the Iowa Democratic caucus, six of the seven Iowa state DNC members were listed as Clinton supporters, with one uncommitted. How is that a fair distribution of DNC officials?

In Nevada two of six DNC members were listed as Clinton supporters, with one supporting Sanders and three uncommitted. That might seem a little fairer. Then again, Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, a superdelegate, was also officially listed as uncommitted.

Yet, one day after the Nevada caucus on February 20, a veteran Nevada political reporter wrote a piece for USA Today titled, “Harry Reid Delivers for Hillary Clinton: Nevada's ‘Neutral’ Power Players May Have Saved a Campaign and Changed History.” It describes Reid’s interventions on Clinton’s behalf in Clark County, Nevada, which includes Las Vegas, and which was the county that tipped a close caucus election to Clinton.


(I'm adding a discussion of the rigging of Nevada on Morning Joe~)



In short, caucuses, as opposed to straightforward elections, permit the party apparatus to exercise more influence. And the DNC—which features dual-role DNC members as superdelegate voters and election apparatchiks—clearly favors Clinton.

Perhaps the best way to literally see and hear the undemocratic essence of the DNC’s superdelegate voting system is to view two must-see short videos of party leaders directly involved in currently overseeing (Debbie Wasserman-Schultz) and bringing (Harry Reid) this arrangement to the Democratic party.

In a televised interview with Fox News on February 12, the DNC chair, Wasserman-Schultz, was asked to explain the fairness of the disparity between the actual votes in Iowa and New Hampshire that together favor Sanders and the delegate count afterwards favoring Clinton.

Wasserman-Schultz’s response was evasive and incoherent. (The relevant portion begins 1:50 into the interview.)


Wasserman Schultz: We Separate Superdelegates From The Voting Process So Party Doesn't Interfere With Voters

Likewise, in a televised interview with Reid, MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell asked a similar question. Reid was as evasive in his response as Wasserman-Schultz was in hers.



It seems that the indefensible influence of the superdelegates is literally indefensible.


As of this writing, Sanders and Clinton are tied in the delegate count due to actual votes. Sanders and Clinton are essentially tied in the two most recent national polls reported at Real Clear Politics. And a February 23 poll by Reuters had Sanders ahead of Clinton nationally by six points.

Yet the tsunami of Clinton’s undemocratic superdelegate support has emerged as the dominant force in the election.

Recently, with media feedback, it has functioned as a self-fulfilling prophecy for a Clinton victory, while sweeping away the legitimate votes for Sanders.

If this were any other country, we’d be quick to call this a corrupt election.


The only available antidote is a massive turnout for Sanders on Super Tuesday and in every primary state afterwards.

http://www.commondreams.org/views/2016/02/26/antidote-dnc-bias-against-bernie-massive-grassroots-turnout

Not very Democratic of the Democratic Party......

Why This Veteran Will Cast His Super Tuesday Vote For Bernie Sanders



Fri, Feb 26, 2016
by Andrew Carleen

Why This Veteran Will Cast His Super Tuesday Vote For Bernie Sanders



For a time during the summer of 2012, American service members in Afghanistan were being killed at a rate of one-per-day.

As a reservist mobilized for duty with the coalition’s counter-improvised explosive devise task force, I had a front-row seat to the dying, to the incessant drumbeat of tactical reports and makeshift combat-zone memorial ceremonies.

Those of us who were there also saw other things first-hand: immense expenditures on useless projects, such as equipping the Afghan army with bomb disposal robots, without a parallel plan to train them in their maintenance or to provide them with replacement parts; gigantic salaries paid to contractors; and endless rewriting of the strategy for a war that had already dragged on for 11 years. It was a visceral, personal lesson in quagmire.

There is an assumption in Washington to which the establishments in both parties subscribe: American military power is the antidote to all the world’s problems. This notion is so deeply entrenched that all the empirical evidence to the contrary has done nothing to shake the conviction of those engaged in making foreign policy.

Secretary Clinton deserves credit for backing away from her Iraq War vote, but she seems to have learned nothing from its disastrous fallout.

She supported the intervention in Libya, which took place without Congressional authorization and has left anarchy in its wake; she has been a leading voice among those calling for the U.S. to take a more active role in Syria; and she has backed the Obama administration’s expansive drone war, which has served as an effective propaganda tool for terrorist recruiters.

Clinton’s supporters tout her foreign policy acumen.

In large part it is how they distinguish her from her rival. Senator Sanders, they argue, dodges foreign policy questions and lacks in-depth knowledge of and plans for dealing with the international crises of our day. What that really means is that Senator Sanders has not bought into the establishment’s assumptions about American power....

.....snip....

Please read the rest here~
http://cognoscenti.wbur.org/2016/02/26/super-tuesday-clinton-versus-sanders-andrew-carleen


The Slow Bern

Wednesday, February 24, 2016
by
Common Dreams
Slow Bern: The Sanders Candidacy In Perspective

by Chris Siebert



It’s true folks, Hillary Clinton has caught up with Bernie Sanders, and they are now tied in delegates. This is becoming a real race!

The fact that Sen. Sanders is running such a successful campaign is quite historic in the context of our recent political history. It’s wonderful that so many people are excited by Bernie, especially young people.

He is shaking up the campaign and the democratic party, which really needs some shaking.



Bernie has inspired millions of Americans because he is a hard-working public servant with a long history of honesty and consistency on the big issues. His refusal to accept Super PAC money has gone a long way towards convincing people that he's not bought and sold. His integrity and record, including his record on veteran’s rights, give him a broad appeal that may make him the most electable candidate, because he’s getting a lot of support from independents, and even some republican voters.

Bernie electable? You may laugh. But for those who don’t think that America will elect a Jewish socialist hippie carpenter, let’s not forget that tens of millions of Americans worship the archetypal Jewish socialist hippie carpenter every Sunday (and one with very long hair).

That being said, I hope that we can agree that it’s not the person that we are voting for that is the most important thing, it is their program, a set of policies that will improve the lives of our fellow citizens and make us a better neighbor in the world.

Bernie is setting forth a program that is by far the most sensible set of proposals for our nation:

*Civil rights for all Americans: Racial justice, women’s rights, LGBT rights, disability rights

*Reform of our justice system & prison system, including ending private prisons

*A fair immigration and humane policy

*Single payer health care

*Free public colleges and universities

*A living wage for all Americans

*Public investment in infrastructure and energy to create decent paying jobs

*Expanding social security by lifting the cap on payroll taxes

*Financial regulation and Wall Street reform

*Progressive taxation to reduce income inequality

*Campaign finance reform to strengthen democracy

*A rational foreign policy

*Environmental policies to combat climate change


Bernie is a self-described democratic socialist, inspired by the wealthy nations of northern Europe, including Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Germany, France and the Netherlands. It’s important to realize that, in the context of our history, he is not a radical. When you look at his program, as Robert Kuttner has pointed out, he is essentially a New Deal democrat like FDR and Harry Truman (remember, Harry Truman tried to pass single-payer health care in 1948, almost 70 years ago).

New Deal democrats became rare in the 90s.

Pres. Bill Clinton, under pressure from the racist Reagan revolution, ended up passing right-wing policies that Reagan could only dream of, including welfare reform, the crime bill, deregulation (esp. the repeal of Glass-Steagall) and NAFTA.

In fact, the progressive agenda has stalled and been set back for well over 30 years, ever since Reagan became president. So there is a lot of work to be done, and Bernie is showing the country what is possible.


And it’s not pie in the sky. The sorts of policies that Bernie is proposing work in every other wealthy nation in the industrial democratic world: Western Europe, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. None of these nations is a perfect utopia. They all have their problems. But we can learn from them, because they have solved many of the problems that we face. Perhaps they can learn from us as well.

...snip...

Read the rest~

http://www.commondreams.org/views/2016/02/24/slow-bern-sanders-candidacy-perspective

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License


Why Wall Street Gives Hillary Clinton Millions of Dollars

Shortly after she helped UBS settle a lawsuit with the IRS, the company gave $1.8 million directly to her husband
By Michael Sainato • 02/09/16

Hillary Clinton’s responses to criticism over speaking fees and donations from Wall Street firms like Goldman Sachs have failed to put an end to questions surrounding the large sums of money she received. “I made speeches to lots of groups,” she responded to Anderson Cooper during the CNN Democratic Townhall on February 3. “I don’t know. That’s what they offered,” she shrugged.

...snip....didn't want to....

Ms. Clinton argues speaking fees and donations have never influenced any of her votes, but The Boston Globe reported that during her eight years in the Senate, she avoided taking stances on financial legislation, as bills ushered into legislation during her husband’s administration—such as the repeal of Glass Steagall in 1999 and the Commodities Futures Modernization Act—established a laissez-faire attitude towards the financial industry from the government.

....snip.....

A few weeks into Ms. Clinton’s position as Secretary of State in 2009, she helped UBS settle a lawsuit with the IRS, saving them millions of dollars. Shortly after, her husband received $1.5 million in speaking fees from UBS, while donations from UBS to the Clinton Foundation increased exponentially.

Clinton advisors have also lobbied to repeal many reforms enacted by Dodd-Frank.

Ms. Clinton’s campaign staff includes many former lobbyists, like her chief pollster and strategist Joel Benenson, who ran a consulting firm retained to lobby on repealing parts of Dodd-Frank—legislation meant to regulate the financial industry in the post-2008 economic recession, by the Financial Services Forum.

The brother of the Clinton Campaign’s Chairman and lobbyist, Tony Podesta, told The Hill in a 2015 interview that he anticipated President Obama’s ban on lobbyists would not be continued by a Clinton administration.

The enormous speaking fees and donations racked up by the Clintons from the financial services industry represent much more than the “artful smear” Ms. Clinton attempted to dismiss during the 5th Democratic Debate.

Ms. Clinton’s record of getting paid substantially by large financial firms suggests her allegiance is aligned with their interests, rather than the American public. Nothing in her record or rebuttals suggests otherwise.

http://observer.com/2016/02/why-wall-street-gives-hillary-clinton-millions-of-dollars/

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