Saturday, May 09, 2015


"Progressives" are I guess a group of voters, would-be voters, once-were-voters, including some more left-leaning Democrats, some registered Independents (like moi), and some optimistic 3rd party supporters (the Greens for example and Democratic Socialists). This progressive group, which I'd like to bet is much larger and more wide-spread than many people suspect, hasn't had a leader for many decades. Dennis Kucinich tried in 2007/8 but was shouted down before he could gain even the most wobbly of foot-holds. That was then, this is now. Bernie Sanders has come forward, a respected Senator of known record.

However Senator Sanders' campaign develops, however far he is able to reach, if nothing else he will have made it easier, and success that bit more likely, for whoever steps up to take a progressive lead in the future. Not only that, but if Bernie can make a decent stab at beating the Clinton machine, it could inspire others outside the mainstream, nation-wide, to try for congressional, state, county, or city offices. That'd be invaluable - the message that there is a way, when there's a will, to beat the billionaires at their own game.

A few points I picked up from reading a piece by Yves Smith and thread of commentary at Naked Capitalism website this week have inspired this post, by the way.

There are many ticked boxes to Bernie's record, and a few that have to be left blank for now. Personally I'd like him to be more anti-war, anti-military and most definitely anti-drone use. Oh - and less nice towards Israel - but as he is Jewish, I can kind of understand his feelings on that score, even if I disagree. I'll take what I can get, for there's unlikely ever to be a candidate with whom I'll agree on every point.

It's no use being a Pollyanna on this though. If Bernie were to win his way through, as far as the White House, would he crumble or fold under the weight of corporate power, the military industrial complex, and what might still be a hostile congress? Huge, huge challenge!

Any success Bernie Sanders achieves this time has to be considered a first step. It would prove to be a much easier and longer stride if congress were to reflect a public confidence and change in mindset bleeding into the rest of the votes on their ballot sheets.

Whatever happens, it's becoming clear that campaign dialogue and political dialogue in general is going to shift now; consequently so will conventional thinking.

Those who wish to damp down enthusiasm for Bernie Sanders' campaign will, among other ploys, liken him to Obama in 2007/8. He's not comparable in any way! Bernie is not the unknown quantity Obama was. Those of us with open ears and minds have been listening to Bernie for years, know exactly what he stands for - and what he doesn't. He has long experience of speaking with and to the people - as one commenter at Naked Capitalism observed "He very well may know the citizens of this country better than big media understands." That is a very, very big plus!

Bernie's natal chart is available in a 2013 post - SEE HERE.


mike said...

Perhaps Bernie's time has come, but being the pessimist that I am, I doubt his sincere efforts will bear fruit. The caveat to this will be to what degree the millennial generation participates in this election cycle [ ]. The declared Democrats dismayed with the Clinton dynasty, independents, and the millennial voters could definitely push this toward Bernie, but this same grouping of voters is notorious for NOT voting. Add the 2000 presidential election, when the Ralph Nader votes were accused of stealing Gore's victory, and the older liberal voters may think twice before casting a Bernie vote that could have disastrous consequences toward electing the antithesis.

The Bush-Cheney team pandered to the Christian, conservative, family-values voter and were extremely successful, albeit manipulation and false seduction. Whether one appreciates Obama's efforts or not, he has taken strong stands on some important issues that I support, only to have the conservatives decry and threaten impeachment. The majority of Americans are NOT unilaterally liberal.

Bernie Sanders certainly has my support, but he will have to provide very strong evidence that he has a coalition that are actually willing to vote in substantial numbers to be a viable contender. I'd far prefer Bernie, but when it comes to election day, if the true match is between Hillary and Jeb, I'll vote Hillary.

mike said...

Oh, oh...gave a wrong response in my previous comment! I keep forgetting that Bernie is running on the Democratic ticket and not as an independent. I will most definitely vote for Bernie in the PRIMARY Democratic election for presidential nominee, if he makes it through the vetting process. TX will hold the primary election March 1, 2016, and I believe OK is on the same day.

mike (again) said...

I am registered as an Independent voter here in TX and TX has a semi-open primary. I can vote in the primary either Dem or Repub, or not cast in the primary and reserve my vote for an independent candidate. If I vote in the primary, I must vote for the same party during the November presidential election.

Twilight, you vote in the OK primary election by closed rules:

"By law, Oklahoma has a closed primary system. That means that in primary and runoff primary
elections, only registered voters of a political party may vote to select their party's nominees. In
other words, at primary and runoff primary el
ections, registered Democrats may vote only for
Democratic candidates, and registered Repub
licans may vote only for Republican candidates.
Persons who are registered Independent (No Party) may not vote for partisan candidates in
primary elections. All Independent candidates appear on the ballot only at general elections."

If you chose to vote for Bernie in the primary, you will have to declare yourself a Democrat prior to March, 2016 (probably over a month prior). You can change this back to independent after the November election.

Twilight said...

mike/mike (again) ~

He made the right decision, I think, to run as a Democrat and not "third party". The country is so entrenched in 2-party politics that the communal mind seems to have grown too stiff to to bend in a 3rd party direction (even towards the Greens, who are getting nowhere fast, after years of trying, in spite of noble intention).

Yes, OK has closed primary elections, I've not been able to vote in primaries since I became eligible to vote (after citizenship).
I was so disgusted with the weak-kneed, lily-livered efforts of Democrats here than I couldn't bring myself to register as Democrat, so took the only other option, for me and registered Independent.

It has crossed my mind that switching my registration to Dem. before 2016 might be a good idea. I'll think on it some more.

Does the primary vote count only state by state, or is it party-wide, nationwide though? I mean, would an extra vote (or even many extra votes) from Oklahoma - reddest of the red states, help Bernie in total, or would it just be buried in OK's horrible state politics?

Twilight said...

mike ~ I hope I made some sense with that last question! It sounds garbled.
I still have areas of brain fog about the complex electoral system in the USA.

mike (again) said...

Each state determines nominees only for that state. The state delegates then vote at the Democratic and Republican National Convention.
"The primary goal of the Democratic National Convention is to nominate and confirm a candidate for president and vice president, adopt a comprehensive party platform and unify the party."

"The primary elections are run by state and local governments, while the caucuses are organized directly by the political parties. Some states hold only primary elections, some hold only caucuses, and others use a combination of both. These primaries and caucuses are staggered between January and June before the federal election, with Iowa and New Hampshire traditionally holding the first presidential state caucus and primary, respectively."

Or see:

There's much buggery along the way!

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ Thank you. Have read part of the links - only "part of" because my eyes began to cross after a while!

So...each state's Democratic primary results don't just go as job-lot totals to be lumped in with all other states' primary votes for the listed Dem candidates, and the winner is then named as "the one". The states' totals (at least OK's) go only to determine how many delegates each of the candidates will have at the Democratic National Convention (party big-wigs) who will nominate the Dem's presidential choice for the presidential General Election, presumably based on that (or not - seems wide open for manipulation just like American Idol!)

Who the heck designed this horrendously layered and muddled system - plus each state has different rules...DANG!! The word "United" in USA has never seemed so inappropriate as here.

Don't know whether it'd be worthwhile changing my registration from Ind. to Dem. . Will keep it in mind though - lots of time before I need decide.

Twilight said...

It's such fun in Oklahoma ... the storm season upon us now. We lost power for around 2 and half hours last evening, a tornado warning some half an hour south of us near the Red River, just heavy rain in town here.

Then around lunchtime today TV weather man got quite concerned about some rotation and possible tornadic activity heading for our town. In the end it skirted us, and we had welcome heavy rain again. More "stuff" coming later today and tomorrow. It's making up this time for the last two two relatively quiet storm/tornado years in our immediate area.

mike (again) said...

Re presidential election - Yes, the political and electoral process in the USA is dysfunctional at best and easily manipulated. The conclusion can be rendered, too, as with Gore-Bush in 2000, and the Florida re-count debacle: "Though Gore came in second in the" [probably manipulated] "electoral vote, he received 543,895 more popular votes than Bush."

“Every election is a sort of advance auction sale of stolen goods.” H.L. Mencken

Re weather - We've had a brief reprieve from nature's fury, but it's supposed to pick-up in a couple of days as a front moves are forecast to have some wildness from the same front. The storms have been ferocious this year. Two storms were back-to-back several weeks ago and I wasn't sure about making it through the night...LOL.

mike (again) said...

And the mosquitoes!!!! Nothing like being targeted as a food source by a plague of mini-drones.

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ How different things might have been with a President Gore from 2000 on. :-/

We had another round of storming early evening Saturday - seems like the TV weather guys are taking up residence in our sitting room! Netflix wouldn't work, must have blown a fuse somewhere along the line!

The storms this time are coming at around the same time each evening, along the same route - weird! We've missed the worst each time so far, been on the margins. Fingers crossed. More trouble tomorrow is forecast.
I hope your ration of it turns out less dramatic than expected. too.

Bob said...

Still trying to rectify a birth time for Bernie.

Bernie's Sun around 167°11'.

Trine at 167°11' + 120°00' = 287°11'.
At 9 pm, EST, on Nov 8, 2016, transit Pluto will be at 286°34'.

On Jan 20, 2017, his precessed Sun will be at 168°10'.

Trine at 168°10' + 120°00' = 288°10'.
Transit Pluto will be at 288°57'.

Bernie has Venus at 22°55' Libra.

On Jan 20, 2017, 12 pm, EST transit Jupiter will be at 22°43' Libra.

In right ascension Venus 201°10', transit Jupiter 201°31'. Will be less than 1 degree from precessed Venus.

If this study I did 6 years ago holds up a Democrat will be sworn in on Jan 20, 2017. Same data rendered 3 different ways.

Click on images to enlarge.

Twilight said...

Bob ~ Oh my! That is clever stuff!
I find it difficult to think in terms of 360 degrees, but having jotted down a list of the signs at 30* each, I began to get my eye in. :-)

It all sounds fairly positive doesn't it? Even if he doesn't win the presidency, his campaign could result in positive things for him, in some way - and a fresh mindset for the nation - that's what is needed most.

I greatly admire your inauguration research. It must have taken you many hours of study, and has brought up interesting results.

At least then, if your study holds up, the vote will not go to what many see as "the greater evil" - but whether the Dem in question will be what some see as "the more effective evil" or a brand new voice and flavour, will remain hidden - as, perhaps it should. (No use providing a target.)