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Response to BlueMTexpat (Reply #66)

Fri Oct 16, 2015, 02:02 AM

73. Hillary had an excellent debate

In my view she is selling policies that are much harder to sell than Bernie's (because they aren't as good for most of us), so her job was harder, if you want to look at it like that. She was obviously better prepared and more skillful in presentation and phrasing. I would say she won the debate but Bernie probably won more supporters from the debate.

I think Bernie needs to improve some of his messaging, though I find his actual policies to be just about perfect. The gun issue is mostlly false political points being used by O'Maey and Clinton, IMHO, unless your solution to the gun problem is to sue gun manufacturers when someone gets shot. Car manufacturers get sued when their defective cars cause accidents, but not when a criminal driver kills someone with a properly functioning car. So I don't see a substantive distinction betwenn the 3 candidates on guns, except Bernie is more likely to fight for what he says he will rather than just throwing out campaign planks.

Re his messaging, though, I think he needs to do a better job answering the question of "how will you have more success getting reforms through Congress than Obama did". He says he will get millions of people behind him, which is great, and he probably will, but that still doesn't explain the mechanism that brings reform. Mass protests in the streets? Phone calls? Letters? They won't listen to us, of course, they never do.

What Bernie will really do, and this is what he needs to explain, is he will fight for the correct reform up front, vigorously, rather than compromising away the right reform because it isn't politically feasible AT THE MOMENT (the fight eventually changes what is politically feasible), or supporting only the policies his corporate donors support (since he doesn't have corporate donors). What happens then, is the entire frame of debate gets changed, the real issue is discussed, we fight for it, we probably lose, we keep fighting for it, explaining why it's the right reform, and the public gets it. That's the magic of telling the truth, people actually will get it, you just have to stay with it and not expect to win the first time. When the public gets it, the oppostion can choose between giving in or being voted out of office. It's exactly what Bernie will do, and how the mechanism to reform will work, and he needs to find a way to explain that to the people when he asks for their votes.

He also needs to do a better job explaining that his reforms will often SAVE money, rather than costing money. Single payer health insurance is much cheaper. So is incarcerating less people, less military adventurism, expanding the social safety nets (the cause of much crime is people turn to crime when their needs are met in no other way, and crime and punishment are very expensive), ending the drug war saves a lot of money too.

Plenty of other ways he can improve his messaging. He's excellent on policy though, at least from my perspective I've never had the privilege of supporting someone whose policies I agree with to this extent.

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