Tag Archives: Bernie Sanders

The Not So Great Debate

Again I watched and listened to the Democratic debate. Well, hardly a debate. A few years ago I read the transcripts of the Lincoln-Douglass debates. The format was this.

Lincoln spoke for an hour. Douglass spoke for an hour and a half. Lincoln spoke for half an hour. Each side was given 90 minutes to talk. Explain. Extrapolate.

No moderators. That was a debate.

Last night I watched something that was called a debate, but was actually one of a series of  made for TV soundbite shows. OK. OK. With 6 candidates you can’t have a real debate, but that does not necessitate the ridiculous system now controlled by networks and moderators.

The discussion , which should elicit in depth, comprehensive explanations of views and policies, instead only encouraged “gotcha ” questions and hostile statements. I ask: What did anyone LEARN about the positions of the candidates? Not much, if anything.

Before I honor you with my solutions, let us re-enact the discussion.

Start Moderator # 1 (because, to be honest, the discussion is more about the “cleverness” of the moderators than the substance of the candidates): Mayor Bloomberg. You run a 60 billion dollar empire and have been around since Jesus walked the Earth. We now have 3 anonymous women who say you told a dirty joke in 1986. Since we now know you are a misogynistic, racist pig who rapes little girls, why are you even on the stage, and not in prison? You have 75 seconds to respond.

Star Moderator # 2: Senator Sanders. You are a communist through and through. You want to give everyone a communist health care plan that will destroy the very fabric of American society. You also had at least one heart attack. So, do you really think America is ready to elect a sickly, disgusting Mao-loving communist who will take away all their rights? You have 75 seconds to discuss all your plans and explain why you love Stalin.

Star Moderator # 3: Vice President Biden. You suck. We all know you are too old and you suck. And what about your son? You are trying to ride Obama’s coattails. Because you are old, a crook and suck, why should people vote for you? Hell, why am I even talking to you, you loser. You have 75 seconds to explain all of your work as vice president.

Star Moderator # 4: Senator Klobuchar. When you were a prosecutor in Minnesota you put black people in prison for crimes. Also, you cannot name the youngest daughter of the Vice President of Guatemala. In view of this history of racism and anti-Latino sentiment, please answer the following. Why are you a racist and why do you hate Latinos and why should any person of color even consider voting for such an obvious hater? Please limit your response to 75 seconds, you racist bitch.

Star Moderator # 5: Senator Warren. You are behind in the polls. You want to do better. You have these very hard to understand plans that no one cares about because they aren’t going to happen. You have been very unladylike today . Do you think being a strident , screeching female who thinks she is so smart will make men turn off to your campaign. I mean, what man wants to hear you talk like you know more than they do? Have you always turned off men or is this a new phenomenon? You have only 60 seconds because you talk too much.

Star Moderator # 6: Mayor Pete. You little cutie pie. Are you insane? You are gay. You are young. You are a smarty pants. You were in the military but no one cares about that. What the hell makes you think you have any right to run for president? I don’t care what your views are. Bottom line. Other than your “husband” and others in “that community” do you really think anyone else is ever going to vote for you? Please answer in 75 seconds and don’t play the lame “military” and “gay” cards.

As the discussion comes to a close the 6 moderators all congratulate each other on their insightful questioning.

Questions not asked by the insightful moderators. Questions which might have elicited intelligent , thoughtful responses.

Explain your health care plan, what it would cost and how you would pay for it.

Mr Trump has turned the Constitution upside down. Explain two ways you would bring us back to be a nation with respect for the law.

Immigration reform has been talked about for years. What is your plan for protecting the border, dealing with the Dreamers and developing a comprehensive plan for legal immigration?

To what extent should we be involved, with troops on the ground, in the Middle East? Explain.

Of course, questions like this cannot be answered in 75 seconds.

So, my suggestions.

1.Give each candidate 4-5 minutes to answer any question, uninterrupted.

2.Ask the exact same question to every candidate.

3. Do not allow candidates to ask each other questions except in the context of their own allotted time.

4. Make sure each candidate gets the same amount of time as the others.

Now these rules would mean that the moderators would no longer be the stars of the show. They would have to bury their egos. Actually, you would need only one moderator who could just ask the questions and keep time.

This would change the entire feel of the discussion. It would have depth. It would be BORING. Nothing but facts, ideas, plans and explanations. So people who wanted more information about these candidates could get that information.

But then, that would be bad TV.

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Filed under debates, government, Politics, Society

Berning the Dems

Bernie Sanders will not quit.

In 2016 many of Bernie’s supporters , loyal to the end, failed to come out to support Hillary Clinton. The result was a victory for Donald Trump. Just a few thousand more votes in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, North Carolina, etc. and we would not be saddled with this boil on the ass of America called Donald Trump.

The Bernie narrative went like this. Bernie was cheated out of the Democratic nomination by the “establishment”. This “establishment ” was controlled by Hillary and using her nefarious methods cheated Bernie (and his fanatic supporters) from winning the nomination he deserved.

Now, this plot had two tentacles.

First, the Clinton “super delegates” gave the nomination to Clinton even though Bernie had won the vote of the Democratic rank and file. The sneaky, corrupt Clinton machine stole the election from the people!

Except…according to the final analysis by “FiveThirtyEight” an independent analysis site, Clinton won the Democratic popular vote with 55% of the total. A full 12% higher than the Bernie vote. Yes, Bernie got 43% of the Democratic vote. He lost. Fair and square. So, the first tentacle of the plot is cut off by the facts.

But that still leaves the 2nd part of the Clinton tentacle. Bernie voters were simply prevented from voting! Voter suppression!!! Well, there is some truth to this. But it has nothing to do with the Clinton plot.

In New York, for example, many Bernie voters went to the polls and were told, “Sorry, you can’t vote in the Democrat primary”. Why did that happen? The answer is simple. They weren’t REGISTERED as Democrats. DUH. Since New York is a “closed” primary state, only Democrats are allowed to vote in the Democratic Party primary. Is that unfair? (In fact, Trump’s own children and lawyer could not vote in the GOP primary because they were not registered Republicans)

This fact has led the Bernie folks to spread the false narrative somehow the Clintons plotted to keep Bernie supporters from voting. No. Ignorance of the law or simply NOT BEING DEMOCRATS kept Bernie supporters from voting in the New York primary.

The claim that the Democratic establishment “rigged” the primary vote was part of the Bernie narrative and continued into the Democratic Convention:

“.…Sanders withheld his endorsement of Clinton until the middle of July, and his delegates to the convention devoted much of their energy to vigorously protesting the proceedings. The booing from the audience was so loud that speakers either struggled through their remarks or stopped to plead with the delegates…...”

This played into the GOP narrative of the “corrupt” Clintons and probably led to many Bernie voters either voting for Jill Stein (Green Party) or simply staying home and not voting at all.

Now, Bernie is old. He just had a heart attack. He is, above all, an egomaniac.

Bernie wants to have it both ways. He wants to be an “independent” but wants the nomination for the Democratic Party. For example, in 2016, he did register as a Democrat for purposes of seeking the nomination. But, he also registered for his 2018 Senate campaign as an “independent”. He did the same thing this election cycle. He has registered as a “Democrat” for purposes of running for president, but has already filed as a candidate for the 2024 Senate race as an “independent”. Having some cake and eating it, too.

To my way of thinking this is rather Trumpian. Big ego. Play the system. Being a “Democrat” when it suits him, being an “independent” when it suits him. Smells of egomania.

Bernie will not get out of the race. Like Donald Trump, he has a cult of followers. “Feel the Bern”. With so many legitimate Democrats in the race who need every vote from liberals and moderates, it is a shame to see this man continue down ego-trip lane. It is very possible that he might, once again, hand Trump the presidency.

The Dems may feel the Bern a second time. As long as it massages Bernie’s ego, he could care less.

Was The Democratic Primary A Close Call Or A Landslide?

https://www.npr.org/2019/03/04/700121429/bernie-sanders-files-to-run-as-a-democrat-and-an-independent

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/06/bernie-sanders-2016-rigged-wont-pledge-support-winner.html

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Filed under Bernie Sanders, Clinton, Democrat, Elections, GOP, Politics, POTUS, president, socialist, United States

Feel the Bern… Vote the Hill

The New York Primary is this Tuesday .  As a registered Democrat I have the right to vote. Usually by now the NY Primary is an exercise in futility, one candidate is well on his way to the nomination. And in the general election NY tends to be deserted by presidential candidates. They all know that NY is securely in the Dem column.

But this time it counts. So, for whom shall I pull the lever. Well, no longer. We used to pull levers, now we bubble in sheets. Like taking a standardized test in high school.

My heart belongs to Bernie. My philosophy is firmly to the left of Karl Marx.  OK.  Not that far, but I certainly side with the socialist mentality. I remember voting for Jesse Jackson long ago in another NY Primary. And I have voted for Ralph Nader . (But only because I knew the vote would not impact the final outcome of a Gore victory in NY). So I naturally gravitate toward Mr Sanders. I feel the Bern.

Then I step back and the more pragmatic side of my political sense takes over. Clinton is not that far from Sanders in her views.  She has a long, and I mean LONG,  history of being involved in issues that are important to me. She has more administrative experience, to be sure. She did run the State Department for 4 years. She is singularly uninspiring, true. But inspiration isn’t everything.

So, I will bubble in the bubble for Hillary. Why?

Pragmatism. She will stand up to all the crap that Trump or Cruz or Kasich (yes, Kasich still has a shot)  throws at her. There has not been one lie, half-truth, insinuation, aggravation and derogation (is that even a word?) that she has not had to deal with and deflect. Remember the illegal Whitewater land deals? Remember how she murdered Vince Foster? Remember how she recruited women for Bill? Remember how she sent top secret emails to our enemies? Remember how she sat by during  the attack on our ambassador in Benghazi and did nothing to help him?

Secretary Clinton was an effective senator for NY. She was a competent Secretary of State who had to repair our international relations after the Iraq debacle. Most of all, she has stood up to the vilest and nastiest attacks on any politician since Andrew Jackson. And survived. More than survived. Came out on top.

I don’t know how Bernie will stand up to the GOP /Fox attack machine. The label “socialist” and “communist” will be pounded out over and over again. His lack of experience in foreign affairs will be seen as a sign of “weakness” by the pundits. Every verbal slip will be magnified, distorted and linked to Karl Marx somehow. And the attacks WILL get personal. I am not sure he has the thick skin and killer instinct necessary to fight back. Obama did. Which is why the GOP hates him. And Clinton does.

So, while my heart belongs to Bernie I don’t think he is electable in the general election. I don’t care what the polls say. I have seen the GOP attack machine in full mode. It isn’t pretty.

I saw Muskie sabotaged by counterfeit letters. I recall the “Willie Horton” commercials which appealed openly to racism and helped sink Dukakis. I recall a veteran who risked his life in the most dangerous missions in VietNam, the swift boats into Cambodia. I watched  the GOP simply lie about his service and mount a “Swift Boat” attack on his integrity. I saw  the label of “communist ” and “socialist” and “radical Muslim” placed on Barack Obama. All good men. All attacked in the vilest of terms. Keep in mind,  the GOP is shameless. In the campaign they will say and do anything.

So, I will vote for Clinton. She has shown that she has the guts and intelligence to stand up to the most vile lies. She has been there for 30 years. And remains standing. Maybe Sanders could stand up to the nastiness, too. I don’t know. But I am not willing to take that chance.

So, while I feel the Bern, I will vote the Hill.

https://berniesanders.com/issues/

https://www.hillaryclinton.com/issues/

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Filed under Benghazi, Bernie Sanders, candidate, Clinton, Cruz, Democrat, Elections, Foreign policy, GOP, government, Hillary, Kasich, liberals, NYC, Politics, POTUS, president, Republicans, socialism, socialist, Trump, United States