Wednesday, July 27, 2016


The establishment Democrats' wish is that once again, all must fall in line. Bernie promised from the start that he would support the eventual nominee, and is doing so, much to the chagrin of some, though not all, of his supporters. After the roll call late yesterday afternoon, most of which I watched online, he conceded the nomination to Secretary Clinton. This is the end of the road for me regarding interest in the campaign. Establishment Democrats are not my cup o' tea, never have been, never will be. I can't wait to regain registration as Independent after 1 September.

Extract from a comment at naked capitalism yesterday, from "JM"
(July 26, 2016 at 11:09 am)

..... As much as I would have loved to see him [Bernie Sanders] stand up there and blast Clinton and Clintoinian politics, that would have been the wrong thing to do. I saw his speech [Monday night] as attempting to tie Clinton to his agenda. The “Hillary knows” phrasing is as much a threat as it is a demonstrative statement of fact. The fact of the matter is that he lost the rigged primary. In the eyes of Clinton’s supporters, he has shown now to be magnanimous in defeat while still working to get some “paper” accomplishments (the platform, etc.).

One can interpret it as him selling out or him compromising his “principles” but I see it as him taking small but strategic steps to win over the other half of the Democratic party. Look, a lot of democratic party members are uneasy with Sanders. And I get it. The language he uses is very forward for the credentialed class and they are not used to it. As much as the credentialed class is lambasted here (and rightfully so), I have many friends in that group and they are not horrible people. They work hard, within a system they will readily admit is unfair and rigged, but they are on the conservative end of the democratic party. For these people, it is not enough to point out the system is rigged. That much is obvious. Had Bernie had more time, I think he could have convinced more of the credentialed class but he ran out of time.

By continuing to organize Bernie has a shot at winning these people over to his side. By verbally demonizing Clinton in a primetime address, his chances of bringing them over to his side would have decreased substantially. So my guess is Bernie is holding out for Clinton to lose (though he would never admit it) and then go aggressive to further capture the national party apparatus. Will it work? Who knows. Though it is incontrovertible that Nader did not cost Gore the election, Bernie must at all costs avoid having that label hung around his neck. Given the low information voters that follow Clinton, that is a tremendous risk he should not be willing to take.

Of course, the establishment media will likely try to pin a loss on him anyway but with that primetime address I don’t think people will buy it. Before Bernie’s speech, Jane Sanders was on NBC countering the nonsense that Bernie must deliver his followers. The NBC people sounded ridiculous to Jane’s straightforward explanation that they cannot force their supporters to do anything. If Trump wins the election and Bernie is seen as not doing anything major to subvert Clinton’s run, my sense is people will come around and the progressive wing of the party will be emboldened. As it is now that outcome is looking more and more likely and I think that is the best possible outcome given the circumstances.

"hreik" responded with: Good comment. Nuanced and imho correct. However, I think the fix is already in with the voting machines. [Presumably in the November election]

I agree with "JM". Bernie has needed to make the best of a bad lot. He'll be a continuing asset in the Senate, until retirement. He should go down in history as the man who, in 2016, tried very hard to turn things around but, in the end, was steam-rolled by the establishment.


mike said...

Perhaps there is a vulgar disappointment, because Bernie achieved so much more than was thought possible, and against a person personifying the inbred, elitist, politics-as-usual Democratic Party, now nominee. Bernie could have gone the way of Martin O'Malley, which would have greatly lessened the sensation of impasse hanging over the Bernie supporters today. Bernie's extenuated efforts have impressively shaped the DNC platform, which is a major accomplishment in its own right, and wouldn't have been possible without us primary voters feeling The Bern.

It gave me great pleasure last night to see-hear Bernie so gracefully forfeit his delegates to Hillary and declare her victory. There was nothing to be gained by Bernie doing anything otherwise. The Hillary supporters can regale in her and their crowning moment, but it's a victory of skullduggery and hatchets, befitting of a dark reign.

Twilight said...

mike ~ I balked at "vulgar", the word having gathered so much moss in modern times as to easily be misunderstood, I do agree with your view on this though. The more enthusiastically we embrace an idea, the harder is the coming to earth when it is proved to be an impossibility - right before our eyes. Each time I looked at Bernie's face last evening at the roll-call, I teared up. Silly, I know. He was so close to tears himself.

We watched 'Murica's Got Talent from 7 to 9 pm, I tried flicking to MSNBC's coverage of the convention during ad. breaks but after the first one came away so sickened I didn't try it again.

Love your last sentence!

Reading around my usual websites this morning has been educational. some who I'd hoped would react differently haven't, but happily there's a strong come-back from some commenters. Nobody gets to glorify Clinton without criticism. I'm encouraged by this, if nothing else. Had Bernie not run, or run as a 3rd party option, so many eyes would have remained, or become, blinkered.

Not sure what'll happen next. Chris Hedges and Robert Reich's exchanges (at Truthdig and other sites) are interesting, but not very helpful. Hedges dissed Bernie from the start and lost me early on. Reich supported him but now thinks supporting Clinton is the only way to go.

Twilight said...

mike ~ Good piece by Greg Palast:

Anonymous said...

Though my comment is not directed at you, Twilight, I'm breaking my promise to remain silent and understand you won't respond which is fine, will also understand if you decide to delete it for whatever reason. You've made your positions very clear and while I don't expect there's anything I or anyone else could share that would change your mind, my comment is respectfully intended (maybe naively) for anyone reading who may not be aware but is interested in another perspective.

I say this because in reading various articles found on various sites (Truthdig, CommonDreams, Black Agenda Report, CounterPunch, Truthout, etc.), I frequently learn more from the individual comments in response to those articles. Comments often provide a jumping off point from which I can do more research. With that in mind, here goes . . .

During DNC speeches, Sanders' gross misrepresentation of Hillary Clinton's positions (and efforts) is troubling and also very revealing.

Sanders said, "I have known Hillary Clinton for 25 years. I remember her as a great first lady who broke precedent in terms of the role that a first lady was supposed to play as she helped lead the fight for universal health care."

Hillary *never* fought for 'universal healthcare' as First Lady, nor has she said she will fight for it as president. Instead what she wanted (and continues to support) was something very similar to the corporate-sponsored insurance farce we now have, Obamacare ~ which doesn't come close to being the single-payer, everybody-in, nobody-out, "Expanded and Improved Medicare For All" universal healthcare Sanders talked about (and claimed to support) as part of his platform:

In fact, Hillary Clinton says she doesn't want to replace Obamacare and that single-payer (universal) healthcare will "never, ever" happen.

Sanders also said of Clinton, "I served with her in the United States Senate and know her as a fierce advocate for the rights of children."

Some children, yes, but still a gross misrepresentation on Bernie's part, one that paints an incomplete picture of candidate Hillary's political history and positions. Intentional or not, Bernie's words may mislead voters less familiar with the facts, particularly *some* "Feel-The-Berners" who, in spite of everything, continue to trust and believe in his message.

For example (and these are just a few examples), Bernie's comments ignore Hillary's support of welfare reform and of husband President Bill Clinton's crime bill ~ and their devastating effect on the poor (many of them minorities) and their children. Or her positions as "war hawk" and the continuing effects of war on innocent civilians (and children) in foreign countries. Or of various free trade agreements and their negative effects on labor, the environment . . . and of course, children.

I understand many liberals will disagree and defend Sander's stance, endorsements and even his misrepresentations as being necessary in the pursuit of incremental change, part of the game of (corporate) politics. Some of us, myself included, see things differently.

For anyone interested, Jason Hirthler in his CounterPunch post, "The Corporate Liberal" addresses the issue of the "corporate liberal" more capably than I ever could:

For a less restrained, more scathing assessment of Bernie Sanders' candidacy and political career there's this:

Whether we agree or not, there's much to consider and many relevant facts to sort through this election.

Take care, Twilight. And you too, mike.:)

LB said...

Meant to identify myself in the previous comment, which came from me.

LB said...

In case you're wondering. I did leave a comment . . . it was briefly there and then just as quickly disappeared??? Much too quickly for it to have been read and intentionally deleted I'm thinking.

Twilight said...

LB ~ Hi there! Your comment had gone to spam (probably because of the Anonymous title) so I've retrieved it.

We have different views on things, and that's fine. I will not argue, because it's not going to change our views - either of us - but I'll simply say that I appreciate your comment, which other passing readers could well find in line with their own thoughts. :-)

mike (again) said...

Hello, LB! Hey, long time, no hear! Regarding The Bern, it matters not at this time. Trump and Clinton are the mainstream choices, with Jill Stein and Gary Johnson as the most recognized on the list of 2016's alternative possibilities. Check-out this list:
Quite a diverse list of contending candidates!

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” Theodore Roosevelt

R J Adams said...

I agree with Mike, Sanders is no longer relevant in the presidential campaign, except for how his supporters vote. Personally, I don't give a Trump who wins in November. In fact, I'm tending to favour the Trump, solely because I believe Americans will be so shocked by his antics as president they may begin to wake up to the realities of life and realise perpetual war, arrogant 'we are the greatest' nationalistic fervour, and their ridiculous pseudo-religious affiliations to their political parties, are not really part of the realities of life at all.
The Democratic Party Platform looks very impressive. We'll see how much (little) of it is acted upon if Clinton wins. I note "closing Guantanamo Bay" is still on the list from the last, silver-tongued, failure as president. How many innocent deaths has he been responsible for in the last eight years? The only thing that keeps his popularity rating so high worldwide is his glib, evangelistic, tongue.

Twilight said...

RJ Adams ~ It's a dismal outlook. I'm not even sure that Trump would be more aggressive than Clinton, on the perpetual war question. He's very much an unknown quantity, and if he did become Prez I guess his VP, ultra-conservative Mike Pence, would be the one doing the work - and that'd not be something to wish for!

When choice is between rock and hard place sometimes it's best to just mentally levitate, let the fates decide. My own vote wouldn't make a difference anyway, Oklahoma will remain decidedly red, though I suspect there'll be a surge to Libertarian Gary Johnson here, but likely not a big enough one to negate Trump.

I'm not an Obama groupie either, though he has been a better figure-head for the nation than his predecessor - a very low bar!

R J Adams said...

Low bar, indeed! I do hope the Oklahoma weather isn't too oppressive. Here, it's mid-sixties and raining. In fact, the summer's been abysmal. We had a week of fine weather in June and another few days mid-July. Now, we're back to April!
Best wishes to you and AnyJazz.

Twilight said...

RJ Adams ~ It's very hot here, mid to high 90s in the afternoons, not quite as bad as weathermen threatened but bad enough. We did, at least, have a very easy tornado time this year (fingers crossed there'll be no more to come).

Yes, an old friend in the south of England told me she keeps needing "to put on a cardigan". I remember those kinds of days with affection!

Best to you and Mrs RJ too. :-)