Did I say I was voting for Sanders?


I did! But then last night I didn’t watch the whole debate, just bits and pieces here and there, but I saw enough to feel a primal urge to bow down before the fierce goddess and worship her. Elizabeth Warren was on fire, and that’s what I need from my candidate. I’m not saying I’ll abandon an intellectual commitment to Bernie Sanders on election day, but Warren is what my heart wants.

It was very nice of Michael Bloomberg to volunteer to be the punching bag of the evening, and to spend what, $400 million dollars for the privilege, but man, did he get flensed alive. If Bloomberg was the proxy racist, sexist billionaire on the stage, Trump ought to be terrified at the thought of facing Warren after the primaries are over. I say “ought to be” because he’s probably too squidgy-brained to care. He also got torn up by Clinton in the debates, and it didn’t matter.

I was amused by the post-debate from the Bloomberg camp that he did very well in the debate — that was a definitive trouncing. He went so far as to claim that he delivered the most potent zinger against Bernie, accusing him of owning three houses. That’s right, a billionaire accusing a man of being a little bit rich was the strongest riposte he could think of.

Also notable: Klobuchar did a fine job of torpedoing Buttigieg.

The Minnesota presidential primary is less than two weeks away and I’m going to have to make up my mind: I’m torn between the savage warrior wonk and the dedicated sage. Of course, my wife is going to unlimber a couple of arms, wave a sword and trident and a severed head at me and tell me to vote for Bernie, and I have to respect that ferocity, too.

Comments

  1. says

    A 75 year old man with a recent heart attack, refusing to release his health info is sufficient for me to drop him significantly in the primary. I’m voting for Warren hands down. Also I’m more than ready for a non-male president.

  2. Morgane Guillemot says

    @Lorax: Kinda sad how misinformation have permeated even here. Sanders gave out three separate doctor’s notes, which went into detail as to his heart rate, blood pressure, weight and overall health. All three agree he’s in great shape.

  3. says

    Unfortunately I have no say in the primary as I’m not a Democrat, but I am definitely for Warren or Sanders or both, over the rest. It’s time for a real progressive.

  4. says

    @2 Sort of like how Trump releases doctor’s notes? Would complaining about that be spreading misinformation?
    But let’s say they are correct, great health for a 75 year old man is not saying much. I’m not a fan of voting for a vice president. If Sanders is the nominee I’ll vote for him, but not in the primary.

  5. cartomancer says

    The good thing here is that they’re not planning on sacrificing the losing candidate after the primaries, so they can both carry on doing their thing, whichever of them wins. If the winner doesn’t offer the runner-up a place as vice president on the ticket, which would seem like a good idea to me.

    Looking at the two of them, though, I’d have to say Bernard has the better record. Apart from Noam Chomsky he’s pretty much the only person in the public eye in the US who has been consistently right about everything for the last fifty years.

  6. consciousness razor says

    It doesn’t matter, PZ. Maybe Klobuchar will squeak out a small lead in MN…. maybe. And then her campaign will wither into nothingness. Warren may get a few delegates there, but the aimless bickering among the centrists will probably continue, with her as one of its more likely victims. Meanwhile, Bloomberg has more than enough money stay in no matter how bad it looks (for himself, the party, the country, democracy, humanity, etc.). Sanders will probably have the most delegates in the end. But the story doesn’t end there….
    Last night, the candidate for whom you currently feel a primal urge just said what the party wanted her to say, like all the others: that your vote shouldn’t matter in the end, no matter what it was, because she believes “the process” (i.e. superdelegates) is what we should consult rather than actual voters. If the “leaders” don’t like what you or I or anyone else voted for, then fuck the both of us. Warren just knows, as you don’t seem to understand yet, that her chances of actually getting a plurality, much less a majority, are pretty abysmal at this point.
    So in the end, we’ll get something to the effect of “Bloomburg no matter who, for those who want it” or some such nonsense. And nobody will have any idea of what it means, but it will be wrapped in the flag, while you’re conveniently reminded for the millionth time that you hate Trump, as if that had anything to do with it. The fact is just that the party doesn’t hate Trump as much as it does Sanders, except it’s not usually so comfortable with the whole “say the quiet part out loud” thing….. But apparently, they’re starting to get the hang of that too.

  7. stroppy says

    I was looking for what they’re made of. I thought Warren did well this time out. She obviously has the intelligence and stamina, but I’ve been a little worried about her deer-on-the-verge-of-getting-caught-in-the-headlights vibe. You don’t want someone int the White House who gets disoriented in major shit storms. But I’m beginning to think that maybe she does indeed have the wiles and inner reserves to handle the presidency.

    Man that Bernie is one tough old bird! He takes a punch and just brushes it off.

    Heh, little Petey –one smooth talker, I’ll give him that.

    Klobuchar, ok what ev’.

    It’s the old Bronx cheer for Bloomberg (later for you dude).

    I suspect that Biden may have helped himself despite himself. Be interesting to see how the pools react.

  8. stroppy says

    I’ll say it again, it won’t matter which of them gets into the WH if voters don’t get out and purge Congress of Repubs with a vengeance. Barring that, it’s highly doubtful that any of them will be effective.

  9. Jeremy Shaffer says

    Lorax at 4:

    Sort of like how Trump releases doctor’s notes? Would complaining about that be spreading misinformation?

    Complaining about Trump’s letter wouldn’t but suggesting a comparison between that and Sanders here would not only be misinformation, it would also be an example of a shallow level of analysis. There’s miles of difference between a doofy letter using the hyperbolic, over the top cant of a carnival barker- which might’ve been dictated by the subject in question- versus 3 separate letters that summarize the health of the subject in levelheaded and professional language.

    Not to mention, the demands he release more than what has already sufficiently been released sets a damaging precedent as it will then be expected of all future candidates. Sure, you might not think that’s a problem now when it’s only being used against one you don’t like, but how about when a future woman candidate’s chances are potentially dashed because her opponent has the records of an abortion she got when she was her early 20s to talk endlessly about? Or, since mental health would have to be included, the details of a candidate’s therapy sessions following a tragic event? How about when we have the first trans candidate and their transition history is up there for public consumption?

  10. says

    I wish that the dems would make a point, during the debate, of mentioning that without carrying the senate, none of it matters. Getting rid of McConnell and the republican senate majority is more important than whoever the dems nominate, unfortunately.

  11. lotharloo says

    I loved what Elizabeth Warren did, I like Sanders a lot but he frustratingly avoids throwing direct punches the way Warren did. Bloomberg got murdered last night.

    That being said, sadly I don’t think it matters and I don’t think it would work at the general election. Democratic voters care much more about the issues she brought up but not the general voters. Trump loves to avoid details of policy and throw general insults, he likes to mud wrestle. If Warren attacks him, he will bring up her native American thing, call her a liar, call her fake and so on. With Sanders, even if you attack him, he will direct the conversation back to “millionaire s and billionaires”.

  12. says

    I only got to watch about two minutes of the debate, but they were the NDA colloquy between a Senator and a quivering mass of gelatin. My faith in Warren has been renewed. Damm she is a complete tiger when she’s confronted with brainless doubletalk. I want to see her up against the Cheeto-in-Chief so bad I can taste it.

  13. F.O. says

    I make an effort not to follow US people and yet half of my twitter is Warren people bashing Sanders and the other half Sanders people bashing Warren.
    People in both camps are making statements without even bothering to verify them.
    I get a fascist trying to distort reality, but progressives?
    You USians have a massive personality worship problem, I can’t find any other explanation.

  14. robro says

    F.O. @ #16 — Are you sure these people are actually “Warren people” or “Sanders people,” or even progressive? There’s a lot of trolling going on.

  15. binaryfission55 says

    Warren said that she would be fine with the convention nominating someone who didn’t get the most votes. She’s not committed to democracy and it cancels out the goodwill from me that she earned by disemboweling Bloomberg. To hell with superdelegates, let the people decide.

    Also, Nathan Robinson is correct, she would be a weak general election candidate. It’s Bernie all the way.

  16. says

    @F.O.

    … half of my twitter is Warren people bashing Sanders and the other half Sanders people bashing Warren…

    I get a fascist trying to distort reality, but progressives?
    You USians have a massive personality worship problem, I can’t find any other explanation.

    Yep. :cough: No other explanation :coughPutin’sBotscough: is possible. There’s certainly :cough: no history of rightwing autocrats :cough: using internet social media for disinformation :cough cough:

    The only reasonable thing to do is to treat all social media posts as good faith efforts by genuine progressives to act out patently non-progressive values.

    @PZ

    I’m torn between the savage warrior wonk and the dedicated sage. Of course, my wife is going to unlimber a couple of arms, wave a sword and trident and a severed head at me and tell me to vote for Bernie, and I have to respect that ferocity, too.

    So, torn between the savage warrior monk on TV and the savage warrior monk who has access to you while you sleep? Hey, I’m for Warren, but I think I know how I would vote in your situation…

  17. F.O. says

    @Robro #19, @Cryp Dyke #21:
    I am seeing people I follow liking and retweeting this stuff. A LOT.
    I am seeing people posting about online discussions they had (probably with trolls?)
    I don’t think that the origin of the bullshit matters much.
    They’re falling for it, and they are falling for it because what they want to be true is more important than what is true.

  18. mnb0 says

    “Elizabeth Warren was on fire, and that’s what I need from my candidate.”
    Yeah, that’s far more important than having a political program that tries to do something about social inequality.
    A vote for Warren is a vote for the social-political elite that already has benefited so much last four, five decades.

  19. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Evidently the Bernie Bros didn’t tune into the debate last night.
    1) Liz is my first choice. Those claiming she’d be a weak candidate never really say why they think so, other than her two X chromosomes.
    2) I’ve never understood why I should listen to Nathan Robinson on anything
    3) I enjoyed seeing Bloomberg reduced from 5 feet 8 inches to 5 feet even and holding his severed head. However, I will even vote for him if he gets the Dem nomination.
    4) All the candidates on that stage last night acknowledge the reality of climate change. Most will at least not make the inequality crisis worst than it is. None pose a threat to the republic. None of those can be said about Darth Cheeto.

  20. drsteve says

    I’ve been a great fan of Warren since before I was one of those who first voted her into the Senate back in 2012, and I loved her performance last night. But I’ve known since the fall that my vote in the CA primary was going to be a pragmatic choice between whichever of her or Sanders was best positioned to win the nomination, so I have to go with Bernie. The continued fragmentation of the more conservative side of the field gives an opening for the left wing to consolidate and pick up as many delegates for one candidate as possible to shoot for an outright majority before the convention, and right now he’s that candidate. Part of me will wonder what might have been if her candidacy hadn’t apparently peaked a little too early, but considering how spoiled I am for quality of second choice, I can’t really feel too too bad. . .

  21. drst says

    The “attack” that Sanders owns more than one home was asinine. He’s a Senator. Many members of Congress own multiple homes because they travel continuously between their home state/district and DC. It’s the same kind of pathetic owns the right comes up with all the time. “Yet you participate in society, I am very intelligent!”

    Warren is a fighter. I feel like I’ve been waiting for 3 years to see any Democrat on a national stage embodying the anger I feel not just at Trump but at the entire GOP, at Bloomberg and Bezos and all the other billionaires who’ve bled the rest of us nearly to death to squeeze out more money than they can ever spend without it ever being enough. I want an angry candidate. She’s not petulantly angry like Trump, she’s full of righteous fury that I share.

    And everything she did to Bloomberg was a reminder to the voters that this is exactly the kind of fire she’d bring to Trump.

  22. drst says

    @hillaryrettig
    It’s not her PAC, a group of people over which she has no control formed a PAC and started airing ads for her. She can’t do anything to stop them. Her campaign is still funded by individual donors, and they set their all time donation record last night.

  23. says

    @mnb0:

    Yeah, that’s far more important than having a political program that tries to do something about social inequality.
    A vote for Warren is a vote for the social-political elite that already has benefited so much last four, five decades.

    Wait, what? She’s provided far more details on her plans and planned programs than anyone else running for the Democratic nomination – or the GOP nomination for that matter. Moreover, Warren was the first to come out for a wealth tax and she details using that to provide free college and/or university to literally everyone who is a legal permanent resident or citizen. Top that off with support for a green new deal, M4A, worker transition plans for both, and an increased minimum wage and it’s very hard to see how voting for Warren would be a vote in favor of the current elite.

    TBH, on the larger policy proposals, there’s not a lot of difference between Warren & Sanders, but Warren scares the elites more because she’s shown a greater ability to work with others to accomplish her priorities. Sanders’ policies might be just as frightening to the elite, but as a person he doesn’t frighten them nearly so much because they believe that they can paint him as extreme and out of touch and marginalize any of his efforts to actually enact policy.

    All the people who bring up the issue of taking the Senate out of GOP hands (and retaining the House in Dem hands) seem to miss the fact that the presidential candidate has a significant effect on the down-ticket races. I’m no political scientist and I could easily be wrong, but with the people who prioritize personality as well as policy, I really think that Warren does better. She fights back (and effectively so) in a way that I think will minimize Trump’s successes. Trump’s tactics rely on his opponents backpedaling in the face of attacks for their success. Warren’s demonstrated willingness to go on the attack to a significantly greater degree than Sanders shows me that Warren has qualities as a candidate which are more likely to blunt Trumpism than the campaign-relevant qualities of Sanders.

    With Warren putting Trump on the defensive (a position from which he doesn’t know how to fight), Trumpism entire is blunted and down ticket races have better odds of success.

    My vote won’t matter since I vote overseas-absentee but in the Oregon elections. That means that even if I could vote in the Dem primary, my vote won’t matter because the primary is finished before Oregon conducts its election. But on top of that, I’m not a registered Dem, so what I think is irrelevant. I can’t vote.

    That aside, I would vote for Warren in a heartbeat if i could do so and if my vote mattered. Voting for Warren isn’t voting for the status-quo elites. Voting for Warren is voting for progressive policies combined with a fierce personality that together seem far more likely to create beneficial change than any other Dem candidate.

    I’d be happy if Sanders won. He gets his policies right. But there’s no reason to dis Warren, and in my decidedly inexpert opinion, there are even many reasons to favor her as a better candidate to oppose the venomous elite than Sanders can be.

  24. lotharloo says

    It’s hard to judge the “Warren vs Sanders” question.

    IMHO:

    Warren can get more done compared to Sanders.
    However, Sanders will shift the Overton window much more to the left compared to Warren.

  25. consciousness razor says

    Evidently the Bernie Bros didn’t tune into the debate last night.

    Evidently, you don’t know how dumb it is to parrot that bullshit.
    Some quick googling:
    Young Women Actually Make Up More of Bernie’s Base Than Men Do
    The Quiet Death of the “White Bernie Bro” Attack
    If you’re not still too busy casually erasing all sorts of people you pretend to care about, maybe you’ll consider the options given in the second link:

    From here, it seems like honest pundits have two options:
    1. They can admit that preference polls are not actually a sound basis for evaluating a candidate’s credibility on the issues, and admit that their reliance on this to critique Sanders in 2016 was unfair and misleading; or
    2. They can insist that Sanders and his politics are legitimized by the demographics of his coalition; that his opponents and their supporters are champions of privilege and white supremacy; and they can make these arguments as forcefully and persistently as they did in 2016.

    Personally, I think you should just let the bullshit die.

  26. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    CR, true, but the women in Sander’s camp would probably vote for a woman. The Bernie Bros wouldn’t.

    Lotharloo, so you don’t think actually getting things done would be an excellent way of shifting the Overton Window?

  27. consciousness razor says

    CR, true, but the women in Sander’s camp would probably vote for a woman. The Bernie Bros wouldn’t.

    No matter many of these “bros” there are, that’s no excuse for what you’re doing, asshole.
    Also, if the standard is “will they vote for my chosen candidate?” then that’s not actually an expression of solidarity with women, black and brown people, poor people, etc.
    It all just revolves very transparently around loyalty to your candidate, as if the stakes were no higher than merely getting a single person into office. I don’t care how fucking wonky she is; I’m not putting Warren above every other fucking person out there….
    But why do I even bother? You don’t give a shit, that much is clear.

  28. says

    I’ll have to take another look at impression versus reality with Warren’s aggression.

    Okay, but remember that part of my argument is that I believe that aggression isn’t the bad trait in politics that the pundits insist it must be. Trump was relentlessly aggressive and, though he needed help and lost the popular vote, he ended up with enough EC votes to take the presidency.

    There are a lot of people who think that “fighting for the common folk” doesn’t just mean drawing up good policies and converting them to the appropriate legal language to be effective. There are a lot of people who think that “fighting for the common folk” means actually fighting.

    Again, I’m not claiming special knowledge, both Sanders and Warren have had their entire careers on another side of the country from me, and I haven’t paid a whole lot of attention to primaries in the last 20 years since Oregon never matters and I’m not registered with a major party anyway. But my impression – accurate or inaccurate – is that Bernie stands up for his policies and principles while Warren is willing to go on the attack against other politicians.

    We have to wound Trump the politician specifically because Trumpism is a cult of personality. We have to take down the personality, not just the policies. I’m happy to be given new information, but from what I can tell, Warren is the better person to do that.

    So a large part of what I’m challenging isn’t a narrative that Warren is too aggressive (and thus an unelectable b**ch). I’m challenging the very idea that being aggressive is bad when confronting Trump and Trumpism.

    And, again, none of that means I dislike Sanders. I just happen to prefer Warren at this point. Make no mistake about my willingness to support Sanders wholeheartedly in the general, however.

    @lotharloo

    Warren can get more done compared to Sanders.

    That’s my current impression, but not because Warren is somehow more skilled than Sanders. Rather I think it’s because of 2 things:
    1) Sanders loyalty to progressive values, while a positive to me, presents a greater opportunity for opposition campaigns to wound him politically. This isn’t his fault, and I won’t downvote him because of it, but I do think it’s true.
    2) I think (as I was just saying above) that Warren’s personal style will be more successful in blunting the power of Trump’s cult of personality, and that as a result the Dems will have a slightly easier time taking back the Senate with Warren as the presidential nominee than they would with Sanders.

    Of course that’s a judgement that could easily be refuted with data from a reputable political scientist, but it remains my current impression.

    However, Sanders will shift the Overton window much more to the left compared to Warren.

    This is where Sanders gets serious points from me. Sanders has been committed to the same values since before Reagan. Even if Warren’s policies are similar to those of Sanders (as I think they are), there’s no doubt that Sanders not only has the capacity to shift the Overton window, but also that he’s already done so. Without Sanders’ creditable run in 2016, M4A wouldn’t be the leading Dem health care plan that it is. In other words, I like Warren’s policies, but it’s very likely that those wouldn’t even be Warren’s policies if not for Sanders in 2016.

    As I’ve said, I’m more pro-Warren than I am pro-Sanders, but that’s not a knock on Sanders. His 2016 policies were more in line with my values than any other presidential candidate in my lifetime. He’s made this race possible, and if either Warren or Sanders makes it through to be the Dem nominee, I’ll be ecstatic.

  29. tallgrass05 says

    Honestly, Bernie is not a Democrat and should not be in their primaries or debates. He’s an ideologue that the USA won’t elect. The USA also will not elect a gay man–maybe in 20 years but not now. Biden stated the GOP will work with him, but ask Merrick Garland how that turned out. Go Warren.

  30. lotharloo says

    @a_ray_in_dilbert_space:

    Getting things done will shift the window but the problem is that we cannot know how much Warren can get done, even if we agree that she is more capable than Sanders. The big problems are obviously the fucking Republicans and their disgusting slimy tactics and their brainwashed zombie of followers. The lesser problem is the conservative Democrats. For Sanders though, he can shift the Overton window even against the fierce opposition by the Republicans. Just the fact that he calls himself a Democratic socialist is a very very big deal in terms of US politics.

    @Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden:

    We have to wound Trump the politician specifically because Trumpism is a cult of personality. We have to take down the personality, not just the policies. I’m happy to be given new information, but from what I can tell, Warren is the better person to do that.

    So a large part of what I’m challenging isn’t a narrative that Warren is too aggressive (and thus an unelectable b**ch). I’m challenging the very idea that being aggressive is bad when confronting Trump and Trumpism.

    No, I disagree. To me, Trump is the professional mud wrestler. Nobody in the Democratic race is at the same level. Trump will be very happy to trade insults, do personal attacks, lie, and make everything about personalities. This is what he has done in his entire life. He has no other talent other than to bullshit and lie. He has practiced them his entire life. If you can see through his lies, then yes, you will hate him without question but if not, then it is very hard to win against him. Just look at his favorability ratings among Republicans.

  31. petesh says

    I strongly suspect that Trump will chicken out of all debates, so I wouldn’t make debating my criterion for choosing a candidate. I thought both Warren and Sanders did well last night. Warren had the highest peak and the more specific set of policy proposals; Bernie had the most effective shout and came across very powerful. So my conclusion was that Warren won on radio and Sanders on TV.

    The tickets I propose (today, maybe not tomorrow) are Warren/Booker, Sanders/Harris. Or possibly the other way round, since the Bernie followers really had the knives out for Harris.

  32. says

    @ Crip Dyke 37
    I see aggression the same way. I mostly laugh at people displaying the double standard, point out the misogyny, and point out their weakness with respect to aggressive women.

    I actively praise the negative emotions as tools to deal with the political dishonesty layered over them by the right and the left, but I do not for example treat the left and “spreading hate” the same as the right complaining about “outrage”. (And those specific portrayals of emotion switch sides).
    The political spin serves different purposes and I try to find constructive criticism and replacement for things like “spreading hate” (control hate, use it as a tool when appropriate of you cut yourself off from motivating instinct), and I leave the right with nothing when I point out that they rule natural response as inappropriate without engaging with it.

    Trump and his supporters are often so weak the have to try to keep confrontation, percieved rudeness, and conflict to themselves. I embrace social conflict as the fight we have so we don’t have to have the physical one.

  33. says

    That should say “…or you cut yourself off from motivating instinct”.
    Hate is powerful, and practicing can challenging but it gets easier. I can’t hate whole groups or individual people, but beliefs, manner of thought, actions and other changeable characteristics work as targets.
    And managing the new skill needs care. I can tell I have to back off for a while when I become hyper-vigilant and can’t sleep until 2-4am. I can take a week or more to come back to baseline, but the tourette syndrome is probably a factor there.

  34. says

    An honest question from Europe: How likely are Bernie to go anti “Trump”?
    I think it’s fair to assume that at least some of Trumps success was his disregard for established political protocol and etiquette. And Bernie is hands down the closest to Trumps polar opposite of them all. But will he turn into a loose cannon on deck? Or will he be just another politician?

  35. Porivil Sorrens says

    I really can’t understand basing political decisions on something as aesthetic as who gets the most epic slay queen lines in a debate. I support Bernie because he’s the only one whose policies reflect the positions I hold dear. Even if he bombed every single debate, he’d have my vote, because he’s the only one offering what I’m looking for. If any of the candidates actually offered something I’m after, it might be more of an option, but as it is, it’s such a miniscule factor to me that I can’t really imagine caring about it.

  36. jrkrideau says

    16 F.O.

    You USians have a massive personality worship problem

    Where do you think Stalin got the idea for the “cult of personalty” from?

  37. consciousness razor says

    Crip Dyke:

    I’m happy to be given new information, but from what I can tell, Warren is the better person to do that.

    I don’t know what information you used to make this determination to begin with….
    Here’s some information. Sanders has a much larger number of supporters. Beyond that, look at Sanders’ and Warren’s respective demographics:
    – poorer, richer
    – younger, older
    – those with no degree (i.e., most people), those with a degree
    – racial minorities, whites
    You may rightfully ask “how about women?” Age, race, class, etc., are all still variables of course, but even leaving all that aside to speak about them in general, Sanders has strong support among women (as does Warren, obviously). The difference just isn’t as significant as the ones I listed above – also kind of obvious, when you think about it, or else you’d expect Warren to be pulling numbers much closer to Sanders than she actually is.

    And, again, none of that means I dislike Sanders. I just happen to prefer Warren at this point. Make no mistake about my willingness to support Sanders wholeheartedly in the general, however.

    You’ve been clear that you personally aren’t voting in the primaries anyway. So I do get that. But think about this from the perspective someone who is voting in the primaries and does have to think about what they’re doing, because that is the point we’re at now, not the general election which is as always in November.
    At what point would you say that progressives should have a “consolidate before it’s too late” strategy, so that we don’t hand the nomination over to people like Bloomberg, Biden, or possibly even total longshots like Buttigieg or Klobuchar?
    Last year, I knew I wouldn’t be happy about it, but I was definitely aware of the possibility that Bernie might not be anywhere near the lead and Warren was, while the field was still fairly crowded with those other asshats. In that case, I was prepared to vote for her in my state, if that’s how things turned out and that’s what I needed to do, in order to nominate a more progressive candidate, rather than any of the jokers to her right.
    But of course, we’re dealing with the other situation, with Bernie in the lead and not Warren. I don’t think we can wait until the general election or the convention or late in the primary season to start thinking about this. It’s not long at all before we get to Super Tuesday, which includes very big states like California and Texas.
    At this point, I think the basic question is pretty straightforward: do you want to make it even harder on progressives, who were already fighting an uphill battle against the establishment, or do you want to make it easier? If you want this to be a less excruciating process and possibly avoid some of the more disastrous non-Bernie options on the table, then you know what to do.
    And it shouldn’t have to be pointed out, but you’re not doing this because somebody had a nicely prepared zinger one night in a debate, against an incredibly easy target like Bloomberg. That would be one of the bad reasons for deciding how you’re going to vote, not one of the good ones.

    1) Sanders loyalty to progressive values, while a positive to me, presents a greater opportunity for opposition campaigns to wound him politically. This isn’t his fault, and I won’t downvote him because of it, but I do think it’s true.

    I have no clue what you’re basing that on, other than failing to understand that this populist candidate has a popular agenda. It’s kind of right there in the name.
    But you want more? He’s been leading in all sorts of polls among the Democratic candidates and head-to-head versus Trump (nationwide and in any state/territory you care to name). He’s got the highest approval ranking among Senators, while Warren is second from the bottom just above Rand fucking Paul. People of all persuasions agree that he’s nothing if not honest and consistent. He has no skeletons in his closet to speak of.
    And what we’ve already seen of Trump’s attacks against him have been tepid at best. (Sometimes, these “attacks” have been more along the lines of “I like Bernie” or “they’re being so unfair to Bernie,” because he thinks that helps him.)
    There just is nothing real/substantial that Trump could try to point at.

  38. says

    @consciousness razor #48:
    How accurate were the polls and predictions 4 years ago? And that’s not a rhetorical question, I just think that post-Trump we all need to readjust many if not all assumptions. It’s easy to be caught up playing yesterdays game…

    It’s not like I have this creepy feeling of being spoon-fed every hint and still not have a clue. Nah, that’s not it. Nope.

  39. consciousness razor says

    How accurate were the polls and predictions 4 years ago? And that’s not a rhetorical question, I just think that post-Trump we all need to readjust many if not all assumptions. It’s easy to be caught up playing yesterdays game…

    Mostly, I pay attention to fivethirtyeight, not individual polls here and there, just because it’s much easier and less time-consuming. In terms of the primaries, that isn’t actually just following the polls. There’s a fairly sophisticated model now, like they’ve used in past general elections.
    (Methodology described here. One feature that might ease your concerns: they run many different simulations, using many different “assumptions,” to generate the forecast. So that sort of thing is built into the model — not perfectly or with extreme precision, but still enough to be useful.)
    They’ve been accurate so far, with Iowa and New Hampshire. They’ve done well in elections going back to 2008. And they presumably do well with sports, since they cover it a lot, although I don’t follow that stuff.
    So, I guess you can still express some vague paranoia if you’re motivated to do so, but their results look pretty solid to me.

  40. says

    @Consciousness razor:

    I don’t know what information you used to make this determination to begin with….

    Watching how campaigning based on “I have the better policy” worked in the last election against Trump. For me it’s not about who starts off with the better numbers (I’ve consistently seen both Warren and Sanders beating Trump head-to-head as of this moment, with Sanders consistently doing even better than Warren, so he has that edge), but rather what I feel would be an effective campaign strategy when competing against a billionaire bully who isn’t trying to prove his policies are better than yours because he doesn’t care about policy at all.

    While I value policy, it’s clear that a large portion of the US electorate does not do so, or at least doesn’t care nearly as much as I think would constitute a minimum of taking policy seriously. All the bullshit about Shrub was someone you could have a beer with and Gore wasn’t – I hated that shit, but some unknown number of people really do seem to have made up their minds based on that. Even for those who are unwilling to consider that directly, if the media is constantly giving more and better press attention to someone because they think desire to have a beer with someone is important there are going to be some indirect effects.

    I like the way Warren attacked Bloomberg last night, and she has shown in other debates a willingness to go after politicians and not just policies. I think that probably makes Sanders a better person, but I also think (and again, I’m fully aware that these are just my opinions and not substantiated by hard facts) that going after Trump as a person and not just Trump’s policies is going to be important.

    Thus it is my current belief that after the conventions, come late September/early October, Warren’s facility attacking political personalities would be helpful.

    I also think that sexism hurts Warren more than anti-semitism hurts Sanders, but as I’m balancing these things out as best as I can, I still think that the ability to attack the personality in Trump’s cult of personality would likely be more important than how sexists and anti-semites view those candidates.

    At what point would you say that progressives should have a “consolidate before it’s too late” strategy, so that we don’t hand the nomination over to people like Bloomberg, Biden, or possibly even total longshots like Buttigieg or Klobuchar?

    As I understand it, there’s no reason that Warren could not, at the convention, direct her delegates to vote for Sanders (or vice versa). If Warren delegates + Sanders delegates > 50%, then they can pick the nominee between themselves. If there are any people at all that would vote Warren but not Sanders, and/or that would vote Sanders but not Warren, it’s hard for me to see the benefit to consolidation behind a single candidate.

    I don’t study politics. I don’t know what it’s like at a nominating convention. But let’s imagine that there are two progressive candidates (W/S in our example) with 30% each and one corporate democrat (B/B/B/K) with 32%, with a scattering of other candidates picking up the last 8% of delegates.

    Now, if there’s some rule or tradition that makes the candidate with 32% very likely to win the nomination, then obviously the progressives should have consolidated sooner. But if there is no rule that gives a huge extra advantage to the person with the plurality beyond what they have by virtue of the actual number of their delegates, then neither Warren nor Sanders have lost anything by campaigning fiercely and independently right up to the end.

    So to answer your question I’d have to know whether or not the convention rules or tradition gives an unearned advantage to the person with a plurality AND I would then have to see someone other than Sanders or Warren with the delegate lead (or good polling evidence that a non-progressive would soon earn that delegate lead). So long as Bernie leads and is projected to continue leading, there’s no reason to consolidate – after all, even if there’s an unearned advantage to gaining a plurality, the plurality in this case is owned by a progressive.

    So… I don’t currently see any advantage to advocating consolidation. If someone other than Sanders (most likely) or Warren (unlikely, but you never know) gains a plurality (or seems set to do so from polling numbers) AND they’ll gain an advantage more than just their delegate numbers in doing so, then I’ll switch my position.

    Honestly, though, even if that were likely to happen before super tuesday, any lead in delegates would be too small and the number of people with a chance to use their right to vote too limited for me to advocate consolidation. The principle of participation is too strong for me to even consider the above factors until the day after Super Tuesday at the earliest.

    you want more? He’s been leading in all sorts of polls among the Democratic candidates and head-to-head versus Trump

    this last section is all simply about how since Sanders is currently leading we know that he must be likely to perform better against Trump than Warren. but I’m not basing my decision on who is currently leading in the polls. All the major dems outperform Trump as of this moment, but even if they slightly underperformed him, they would still be viable national candidates. At that point I have to assess whose skill set and personal hi/story is more likely to be effective against Trump. I don’t know enough about political science to be at all certain which one would actually be better, but my current assessment is that Warren would be.

    Head to head campaigning is simply different than pre-campaign “if the election were held today” polls. My best guess is we need someone willing to attack the personality aspect of Trump’s cult of personality. But even if, say, Buttigieg were willing to do so, I wouldn’t support him. THere’s a minimum floor of good policy that I require of my candidates. Warren and Sanders both meet that, so I’ll be happy if either wins the nomination. I just happen to hold the personal belief that Warren’s campaigning looks to me like it might be more effective against Trump.

  41. says

    @#14, lotharloo:

    Sanders does indeed resist making more vicious attacks, both against Trump and — critically — against other candidates as well. He did so in 2016, too — there were a number of times when he really could have smashed Hillary Clinton in public, and refrained.

    Basically, as far as Sanders’ personal behavior is concerned, he’s damned if he does and he’s damned if he doesn’t. If he attacks people, then the other candidates can point at him and claim he’s a out-of-control zealot; if he doesn’t, then he comes across as restrained. This standard applies only to him, not to the others — you won’t see the media try to play up Biden as a pro-Trump, pro-Republican candidate no matter how much he talks about loving Republicans and the rich. Elizabeth Warren was attacking other candidates for being backed by billionaire-funded superPACs in earlier debates, but now she has one and has fallen mysteriously silent about it — the same way she’s mysteriously silent about having a team of foreign policy advisors who are uniformly hawks.

    (Sort of like the medical records thing that that… well, I won’t name-call directly… person at comment #1 brought up. Biden isn’t being asked for “complete medical records” even though he’s even older, and as with Obama’s birth certificate, no matter how much Sanders actually releases, dishonest people can always pretend that there’s something more he should do, and something hidden away that they could worm out if only Sanders wasn’t hiding it. Lorax up there is a dupe of the sort of people who think Bloomberg is a great candidate… you know, the guy that Neo-Nazis are endorsing now, great candidate, wonderfully representative of the Democratic Party.)

    But really the thing that stood out was that after 3 years of insisting that Hillary Clinton should have won the 2016 election because “she got the most votes”, all the candidates on stage, including Warren, said that it would be okay to give the nomination to someone other than the candidate who gets the most votes, using superdelegates. That, to me, is dangerously close to being the last straw. For the last several weeks, Warren has been trying very hard to alienate any Sanders supporter who has been willing to support her if she gets the nomination, presumably in hopes of getting Biden/Buttigieg/Bloomberg supporters to think of her as being just as centrist (and, therefore, just as worthless) as their preferred candidates. I’m seriously reevaluating whether she would be worth turning out for as a result, because more and more she’s showing that she can betray the public just as much as the rest of them.

  42. says

    @#38, tallgrass05

    Honestly, Bernie is not a Democrat

    Honestly, the Democrats are a tainted brand that is actively distrusted by a majority of the country because they have consistently refused to stand up to the Republicans. Have you not noticed that the party has been hemorrhaging voter registrations since the Clintons took over? The largest group of voters is Independents, not Democrats, and a majority of Independents lean left — but polls repeatedly show that they don’t trust the Democratic party, usually for very good reasons.

    and should not be in their primaries or debates.

    Well, hey, goodbye, under-40 voters!

    It’s absolutely hilarious to watch Democrats wonder why no younger voters are turning out to support them any more. Did you not notice that Obama got younger voters excited and turned out, and then actively betrayed them and killed off all the systems which had engaged them so that they didn’t come out again in the midterms? (All those e-mail lists and promises that there would be more events to get involved? Immediately shredded once Obama was in office and insisting on giving the Republicans everything they wanted in the name of bipartisanship.) Did you fail to realize that in 2016, older voters basically said “you can’t have the candidate you like, who actually wants to solve problems, instead you’re going to take our uninspiring clueless candidate who seems to hate you and is actually responsible for a lot of those problems even existing, and shut up because we know what we’re doing” and then lost? The Democrats have been slapping young people in the face and telling them to shut up for decades, now. If the Democrats excluded Sanders, they would manage to lose half of Generation X and the overwhelming majority of Millennials and younger — and they probably will do so anyway if they don’t nominate him.

    He’s an ideologue that the USA won’t elect. The USA also will not elect a gay man–maybe in 20 years but not now. Biden stated the GOP will work with him, but ask Merrick Garland how that turned out. Go Warren.

    Yeah, just what we need — another hawk who takes money from billionaires and thinks the system is basically okay if only smart people were in charge. Sounds very familiar. Where have I heard it before? Oh, yeah, that was a description of Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton. Funny how nobody ever asks these technocratic candidates “if you think the system would work just fine if only smart people were in charge, does that mean you think Bill Clinton and Barack Obama are idiots?” I’d love to see their answers.

    @#50, coreyschlueter

    I wonder if Sanders or Warren would be able to win in States that Clinton lost such as Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan?

    According to polls at the time: yes, absolutely. (Remember: Clinton actually lost some of those primaries; the people there preferred Sanders, largely because when it was up for consideration he came out against NAFTA, which removed all the manufacturing jobs and killed the unions, while the Clintons were the ones who talked enough Democratic Senators into signing off on it to ratify it, and spent 8 years coming up with various narratives to explain how it was good for us before admitting, publicly, that it had harmed both the US and Mexico and had been a mistake.) (Which anybody who had been paying attention when it was introduced — by Reagan Republicans, who were not shy about how it would benefit the rich and kill unions — knew all along.)

    Seriously: the problem with centrism isn’t ethical, it’s practical. Centrist policy, when it differs from more traditional Democratic policy, is always watered-down Republican policy. When we’re lucky, the stuff centrists do merely turns out not to work. The bigger things, like NAFTA, the PATRIOT Act (based on a bill by Biden), the educational debt crisis (caused by another Biden bill, which made educational debt undischargeable by bankruptcy), support for war in Iraq and Libya and Syria, drone bombing… all that stuff blows up and turns into more problems. A vote for a centrist is a vote to make things worse, no matter what their rhetoric may be at the moment.

  43. says

    @The Vicar:

    [Warren has] mysteriously silent about having a team of foreign policy advisors who are uniformly hawks.

    Did not know this. Thank you. Definitely takes her down a peg or 17 in my eyes.

    all the candidates on stage, including Warren, said that it would be okay to give the nomination to someone other than the candidate who gets the most votes, using superdelegates

    Okay, but then wouldn’t you be pissed at Sanders for the same reason?

  44. says

    @The Vicar:

    the educational debt crisis (caused by another Biden bill, which made educational debt undischargeable by bankruptcy)

    Just FYI, I don’t know about the specific bill you’re discussing, but the statute as it exists now and as I think (but am not sure) it existed then does permit discharging student loan debt through bankruptcy.

    Unfortunately it places that debt in a separate category and makes it so that such debt is not discharged automatically with bankruptcy the way that most debt will be. Still, if you make a separate petition specifically on the issue of student loan debt it can be and often is discharged. This research is from 2011 and finds that the biggest barrier to discharging student loan debt is the petitioner’s failure to try. Only 0.1% applied for the “undue hardship” waiver. Of those that applied, 40% succeeded.

    The study does not have a specific finding on whether the success rate would fall (and by how much) if more people applied, but the tiny percentage of people bothering to apply is clearly the biggest hurdle and the study finds that clearly there are people who go through bankruptcy that could succeed but do not attempt.

    As a result, many legal experts have said that communicating misinformation that bankruptcy does not allow the discharge of student debt is a major contributing factor to people being trapped in impossible debt-to-income situations based on student loans.

    In other words, if you care about people not getting trapped in that situation, there are a lot of things you can do, and merely avoiding misinformation is FAR from sufficient, but simply not providing a false sense of hopelessness is the easiest path one can take to helping more people escape impossible-to-repay student debt. I hope that in the future, The Vicar, you are careful to speak about this very real problem in ways that do not discourage people from getting relief to which they are entitled under law.

    For everyone reading this: bankruptcy in the US can discharge your student loans. It’s not easy, but the biggest reason for failure is simply the failure to try.

  45. dfjo65 says

    I was just perviewing the PRWatch site. They are based out of Wisconsin. The Michael Bloomberg story posted Feb.14, by Alex Kotch, details the Bloomberg fund raising focus. If Mr. Bloomberg claims to be running as a Democrat candidate, could someone explain his funding of his chosen candidates.

  46. consciousness razor says

    While I value policy, it’s clear that a large portion of the US electorate does not do so, or at least doesn’t care nearly as much as I think would constitute a minimum of taking policy seriously.

    Then “I have a plan for that” is not a such an effective slogan and campaign strategy, compared to “Not me. Us.” Warren is the one trying to cultivate an image of being an elite policy wonk – a natural fit for a former Harvard Law professor. (It sometimes falls flat, because her real expertise is focused on Wall Street, not all sorts of other policy; also, because she leans more toward market capitalism, another natural fit for a former Republican from Harvard.)
    Sanders behaves like an organizer of a democratic socialist mass movement. He goes out to find his support among ordinary people, interacting with them on the ground and listening to them, empowering people to make it into our movement, so we can do the populist thing of expressing how our own experiences and what we want from our society.
    So what kind of “policy” do people not care about or take seriously? I’m not sure, but it would be absurd to suggest that there are no substantive/serious issues that matter to ordinary people in their own lives. It’s undeniable that their class interests matter to them, and their health, education, safety, prospects for the future, etc., all play a part in that.

    I like the way Warren attacked Bloomberg last night, and she has shown in other debates a willingness to go after politicians and not just policies. I think that probably makes Sanders a better person, but I also think (and again, I’m fully aware that these are just my opinions and not substantiated by hard facts) that going after Trump as a person and not just Trump’s policies is going to be important.

    Maybe you haven’t been listening very much to Sanders in his speeches, debates, etc., but he does the same thing.
    He’s been saying repeatedly that Trump’s the most dangerous president in recent American history, that he’s a liar, a fraud, a racist, a sexist, a xenophobe, a homophobe, and a religious bigot. And he’s been finishing it off with “and those are his good qualities.” Like I did right here, it’s summarized clearly and forcefully in just a few sentences, making for easily digestible soundbites. If you’re into that sort of thing.

    Thus it is my current belief that after the conventions, come late September/early October, Warren’s facility attacking political personalities would be helpful.

    Sure that would be helpful, but you’re not making a comparison. One recent bit from Sanders: “James Carville, with all due respect, is a political hack.” No hesitation, no beating around the bush, none of the niceties you often hear from Warren while she’s trying to set up an attack (which often feels scripted/prepared, not authentic/spontaneous). And from there, like it was nothing, he moves straight into his core message again. What’s not to like about that?

    As I understand it, there’s no reason that Warren could not, at the convention, direct her delegates to vote for Sanders (or vice versa). If Warren delegates + Sanders delegates > 50%, then they can pick the nominee between themselves. If there are any people at all that would vote Warren but not Sanders, and/or that would vote Sanders but not Warren, it’s hard for me to see the benefit to consolidation behind a single candidate.

    This is about your vote. Suppose that you are in the voting booth now, and it is your decision to make. You get to vote for anybody you want.
    Delegates and superdelegates will do what they do, much later at the convention. You are merely hoping that your vote for Warren will transfer to Sanders, but that is at best wishful thinking and not a sure thing at all. Like I said, if you want it to go to Sanders instead of any of the other candidates that you don’t prefer, then you should vote directly for Sanders, because that is the one thing in this whole mess that you can actually control.
    It’s also likely that many votes for Warren will be in places where she doesn’t reach the viability threshold and thus doesn’t get delegates from them — a wasted opportunity for you. And even where she does reach viability, the delegates simply do not mathematically represent a fair count of your vote. It’s better to make it as close to what you actually want as you can, while you still have some say in the process. There’s no sense in doing anything else, unless you really prefer one of the more conservative choices to Sanders.

    Now, if there’s some rule or tradition that makes the candidate with 32% very likely to win the nomination, then obviously the progressives should have consolidated sooner. But if there is no rule that gives a huge extra advantage to the person with the plurality beyond what they have by virtue of the actual number of their delegates, then neither Warren nor Sanders have lost anything by campaigning fiercely and independently right up to the end.

    Superdelegates vote in the second round. By that, I mean that if Sanders doesn’t have a majority (greater than 50%), but does have a plurality (more than any other candidate), then hundreds of superdelegates will be able to vote in the next round. The party establishment has kept them in the process, although Sanders tried to eliminate them entirely, precisely so that the party can nominate the candidate they want (as opposed to what Democratic voters like your or me want).

    So to answer your question I’d have to know whether or not the convention rules or tradition gives an unearned advantage to the person with a plurality

    No, suppose Sanders gets the plurality, as expected. The issue is that he doesn’t have an earned advantage, by virtue of earning more votes than anyone else. The party establishment has given itself an advantage in the form of superdelegates, which can go to candidates favored by that establishment – most likely the person with the next-highest number of delegates instead of Sanders, and that means most likely Bloomberg or Biden. One of them would get an unearned advantage from this process. If your vote for Sanders is added to his popular vote and delegate numbers, you are playing your part and helping to make that outcome less likely. Or you can leave it up to them and risk nominating Bloomberg or Biden.

    all the candidates on stage, including Warren, said that it would be okay to give the nomination to someone other than the candidate who gets the most votes, using superdelegates

    Okay, but then wouldn’t you be pissed at Sanders for the same reason?

    They should’ve said all of the others. Five out of the six said that, but not him. It was the last question in the debate before they gave their closing remarks.

  47. consciousness razor says

    Also, re: #30, since it does bear on some of the things we’re discussing…. You quoted mnb0, “A vote for Warren is a vote for the social-political elite that already has benefited so much last four, five decades.” Notice how you jumped immediately into the policy wonk weeds, not the kind of clear and direct evidence of her character/integrity/personality that you had claimed was such an important part of your “personal” beliefs about the candidates. You don’t have to look too hard for this stuff….

    Remember this? The first picture–Sanders sitting, looking displeased, Warren clapping–was taken during a state of the union address, right after trump declared that this would never be a socialist country. The second is a fuckin badass dissenter at one of Hitler’s rallies

    I think moments like that speak volumes. And anyway, what has the bland, “safe,” “compromise” strategy of the centrist/conservative establishment actually gotten us in recent history?
    1980: Carter/Mondale lose against Reagan/Bush
    1984: Mondale/Ferraro lose against Reagan/Bush
    1988: Dukakis/Bentsen lose against Bush/Quayle
    1992: Clinton/Gore win against Bush/Quayle and Perot/Stockdale
    1996: Clinton/Gore win against Dole/Kemp and Perot/Choate
    2000: Gore/Lieberman “lose” against Bush/Cheney
    2004: Kerry/Edwards lose against Bush/Cheney
    2008: Obama/Biden win against McCain/Palin
    2012: Obama/Biden win against Romney/Ryan
    2016: Clinton/Kaine “lose” against Trump/Pence

    I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t look so good to me, even when the Democrats manage to win.

  48. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    thank you for letting break the thread off on a tangent. I did not understand how Bloombug [nb] would think that responding to the NDA question with “they signed it consensually” would have ANY validity. The NDA’s under discussion were clearly to protect him and included severe threats to them when the NDS is violated. Agreements under duress are never considered consensual, by definition of duress<./i>.

    welcome to the Warren camp. She demonstrated she is ready for the first 3 letters of her name. She is a WAR woman. Aimed to break the walls surrounding women from achieving goals for society. The war to achieve her goals only scratches the wealthy, does not crush them at all. The wealth tax is little more than their
    pocket change, little did they know their pocket change was more than enough to give healthcare to everyone and free education to every child.
    Who knew? Warren. he is my Senator and I WILL vote for her in the primary then whoever is the blue in the final.

  49. says

    Her plan is detailed.

    Detailed does NOT equal good.

    It leaves it too long. Blitzkrieg, no matter how inefficient it is, is the only reliable way to get health reform done, because otherwise the insurance industry will have time to mount a defense.

    Aside from the fact that she doesn’t seem to have a good head for advisers, and the fact that she got rolled by Trump the first time she crossed swords with him, in a way that draws light onto a massive weak spot, I have no faith in her to survive a general.

    Not that’s its’ terribly meaningful now, she’s at what, 12%? in polling averaged, last I checked, and doesn’t really have that much realistic chances of a comeback at this point. If anything, she’s a Bernie spoiler now.

  50. timorous says

    @56

    Only sanders said that the person with the most delegates going into the convention should win the nomination, everybody else on stage said that they should follow the process.

  51. consciousness razor says

    Not that’s its’ terribly meaningful now, she’s at what, 12%? in polling averaged, last I checked, and doesn’t really have that much realistic chances of a comeback at this point. If anything, she’s a Bernie spoiler now.

    Just to underline the point, here are 538’s current odds (not vote share) of getting a majority of pledged delegates:
    No one: 42%
    Sanders: 35%
    Biden: 12%
    Bloomberg: 9%
    Buttigieg: 1%
    Warren: 0.8%
    All others: 0.2%
    And the odds of getting a plurality of pledged delegates:
    Sanders: 55%
    Biden: 22%
    Bloomberg: 18%
    Buttigieg: 3%
    Warren: 2%
    All others: 0.3%

    That “No one” spot at the top is definitely something to worry about. And if anybody’s going to say that Sanders isn’t in good shape while Warren is, they need to get up from the armchair and out of their own house, to actually take a look around at the real world every now and then. Polls and other indicators might be a little off or not catch everything, but that doesn’t mean you should flip the whole fucking picture upside down.

    You know what I would’ve liked from Warren (or any candidate)? Don’t just use those specific women and their NDAs as props to beat Bloomberg and lift yourself back into a race you’re losing. Say that this is one way in which we need to fight for worker’s rights, so that those kinds of agreements cannot be considered legally valid anymore, because corporations should not have that kind of power over human beings and their ability to exercise their first amendment rights. Put that item in your platform. Of course, it won’t be a big, flashy piece of proposed legislation which has an Earth-shaking impact on our society/economy, but it advances the cause in important ways. You couldn’t really boost your political campaign much with it, because people ought to expect a lot more than that. And you probably wouldn’t spend your limited time on the debate stage talking about it. But it would be something that you push for anyway, because it matters to real people and not just those who used to be employed by your political opponent. The point is, if it’s not just a stunt/spectacle for digging into some oligarch who has a million other problems worth mentioning, I’m perfectly okay with that.

  52. hemidactylus says

    Can’t bring myself to watch the debates. I am kinda hoping Warren starts doing better primary wise.

  53. KG says

    Sort of like the medical records thing that that… well, I won’t name-call directly… person at comment #1 brought up. Biden isn’t being asked for “complete medical records” even though he’s even older – The Vicar@54

    Biden is 77. Sanders is 78. And Biden hasn’t had a recent heart attack. If I had a vote, I’d vote for Sanders – but it’s no use pretending his age and health are not a legitimate issue.

    The Democrats have been slapping young people in the face and telling them to shut up for decades, now. – the Vicar@55

    So a lot of the young people they slapped in the face and told to shut up must be old people by now! After the Brexit referendum and the recent UK general election, i’ve been asking myself if most of my contemporaries were always as selfish and stupid as they are now (reasonable-sized exit polls allowing one to see age differences in voting don’t go back as far as my youth, at least in the UK), or is it a result of the aging process?

  54. says

    Delegates and superdelegates will do what they do, much later at the convention. You are merely hoping that your vote for Warren will transfer to Sanders, but that is at best wishful thinking and not a sure thing at all.

    What? No I’m not. I have been clear that
    1) If I were actually eligible to vote in the primary, I’d probably be collecting more information so my current thoughts aren’t necessarily the best formed thoughts. I wouldn’t recommend anyone base their vote on what I say about the situation. They should go do far more research than I’ve done to this point. Voting is important.
    2) Although I haven’t bothered to collect all the information I consider it my duty to collect before I vote – because I don’t get to vote any time soon and things will change a lot before I do, so there’s no reason to research the current state of things I do have a preference as of this moment.
    3) That preference is not Sanders, it is Warren.

    You’re being dishonest when you say that I “hope my vote will transfer from Warren to Sanders”. No, if I were voting, (which I’m not, but this is your hypothetical and it insists that I have to vote now, with my imperfect information, and that my vote actually counts, which in real life it does not) I would be voting for Warren in the hope that my vote would somehow magically transfer to Warren. It’s a simple concept. I don’t see why that should have been confusing for you.

    As a separate issue, not about how I would vote in an imaginary primary that doesn’t exist, you asked “when should progressives consolidate their vote”. I answered that this depends on some factual predicates to which we don’t have answers. But the primaries are already anti-democratic enough.

    What you’re asking is when should we be telling people that they can’t vote for the people they actually support because we must winnow down the acceptable choices to two so that we will inevitably end up with a majority nominee without the superdelegates coming into play. That is anti-democratic as fuck. While the exact timing under which I might recommend that as a necessary strategy depends on certain factual questions, there’s NO FUCKING WAY I’m going to recommend people give up on the idea of voting for the candidate that actually support (even if they’re supporting Tulsi Gabbard) when the only states that have caucused and/or voted are Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada.

    Talking about recommending people not vote for the candidate that they actually favor is a bad plan with bad effects. We know that people become disengaged when forced to choose between the lesser of two evils. And while I don’t see Sanders as evil at all, some people do. If we told people that they have to vote Sanders or Biden or Sanders or Bloomberg or whatever other twosome you prefer so that we could get a majority-supported nominee, how would that anti-democratic strategy be better than a brokered convention? It’s possible that the outcome might be better (in other words, I don’t know how things work, but I’m open to the idea that it’s more likely for Sanders to be nominated in a two-candidate race than he is to be nominated through a brokered convention) in this cycle, but the strategy itself is still terrible.

    Produce factual answers to the questions that I posed above and I might be willing to consider recommending progressives consolidate behind a nominee at some point, but it sure as hell won’t be before the populations of the states who have completed primaries add up to at least half and probably not til they add up to at least two thirds of the population of the USA.

    Superdelegates are bad. The situation doesn’t get better by simply telling people they’re not allowed to vote for the candidate they prefer because you and I have determined their vote must go to someone else for the greater good.

    Notice how you jumped immediately into the policy wonk weeds, not the kind of clear and direct evidence of her character/integrity/personality that you had claimed was such an important part of your “personal” beliefs about the candidates.

    mnb0’s contention was that Warren was a tool of the elite. The elite has lots of aggressive assholes. It also has lots of people who are laid back and just want to enjoy their fleet of yachts. What makes someone a tool of the elite is policy, not personality. So, yes, in that context policy was more important to answering that particular objection. This isn’t deceptive and it isn’t hard. I’m wonkish enough to read the policies of the candidates before I vote for them, but not everyone is. I care about the policies more than I care about the personalities, but not everyone does. I care about experience and competence, but usually only because policies that have no hope of implementation can then be ruled out as policy reasons to vote for someone. I care about someone’s messaging because I want to be inspired, but not because the messaging is more important than the message. When it gets to the point of caring about electability, then I have to care about what other people care about.

    These last two things, feeling inspired and guessing at what will work for other people who aren’t like me, are more tie breakers than anything else. I rarely have had to even consider them in my voting. (And TBH, I don’t like the idea of using personal feelings of inspiration at all, but 1) I’m being realistic and don’t think it’s possible for me to be a fully Vulcan voter, and 2) inspiring people can result in getting things accomplished that might not otherwise be accomplished. This is better judged by polling of some kind, and also blends in with electability, but again, I’m not a perfect Vulcan and don’t want to be. I’ll minimize this effect more in the presence of other useful information – like polling numbers showing more definitively who inspires more people – but at this stage in my process I’m sure it has some effect.)

    Usually the policies of any candidates in any race in which I’m voting are more than enough to distinguish them. I actually like Sanders’ and Warren’ policies enough that I would vote for either. So then I begin to consider other things – which candidate I think could accomplish more if elected, which candidate has the better chance of being elected, which candidate inspires me more. It’s a rare luxury. But when you say:

    character/integrity/personality that you had claimed was such an important part of your “personal” beliefs about the candidates

    you’re either misunderstanding or misrepresenting. Yes, in this case certain factors (not really “integrity”, I’m not sure where you got that, and I wouldn’t have described them with the other words you use either, preferring things like, “campaigning style” to “personality” which makes it seem like I would give a fuck about whether it might be fun to have a beer with someone when I’m choosing who should get my vote – I’m neither that shallow nor that narcissistic) have an effect, but only because more important factors have already been satisfied.

    If two students are competing for the top grade in a class and the grading happens question by question, you can end up with those two students tied after a 70 point essay and 29 one-point questions are graded and only one one-pointer remains. The final question might seem to outsiders like it is more important than any of the other questions because it happened to come down to this as the tie breaker. But the final question still only counts for one percent. The essay is still vastly more important.

    Don’t misrepresent my willingness to break a tie on these factors with weighing these factors heavily.

  55. says

    @KG:

    If I had a vote, I’d vote for Sanders – but it’s no use pretending his age and health are not a legitimate issue.

    The problem isn’t that people believe his health is not a legitimate issue. It’s that others’ health is also a legit issue and Sanders has released a huge volume of medical information compared to other candidates. I don’t think we need or should have every bit of information extant on Sanders’ health. If he’s a swinger who has to get treated for chlamydia every couple of years, I don’t care. Chlamydia has no effect on someone’s ability to govern.

    And yet there are a lot of assholes making much of the fact that we don’t have very scrap of paper from Sanders while simultaneously not making a peep about wanting more information from Biden or Warren. This disparity is wrong and Sanders supporters are right to criticize it. Hell, anyone with intellectual integrity would be right to criticize it.

    Don’t mistake the discussion for one about whether it’s illegitimate to be concerned about Sanders’ health. That really isn’t the issue and never has been the issue.

  56. KG says

    This disparity is wrong and Sanders supporters are right to criticize it. – Crip Dyke@72

    But they are not right to employ factual errors in doing so, as The Vicar did: Biden is not older than Sanders, but a year younger. Nor to ignore relevant facts – such as that Sanders is the only candidate known to have had a recent heart attack. Which makes him more likely to die or become incapacitated in the near future than if he had not had one, and probably more likely to do so than any other candidate. So in that sense, his health is a more relevant issue than that of any other candidate.

  57. says

    @KG:

    But they are not right to employ factual errors in doing so, as The Vicar did: Biden is not older than Sanders, but a year younger. Nor to ignore relevant facts – such as that Sanders is the only candidate known to have had a recent heart attack.

    Good grief, why are you lecturing me? Where did I defend factual errors? Where did I defend the idea that having a heart attack isn’t a relevant consideration?

    The Vicar, wrong as said Vicar was on the ages of the candidates, was critiquing not the candidates but the dynamic of asking only some folks for complete medical records. You changed the subject drastically, and created a straw-man of The Vicar’s position when you said:

    it’s no use pretending his age and health are not a legitimate issue.

    No one here said it wasn’t. Not The Vicar, not me. No one. The Vicar was off by at least a year in The Vicar’s knowledge of one or more candidate’s ages. You made up a complaint out of whole cloth and used that imaginary complaint to portray your rhetorical opponents as irrational.

    By far the bigger mistake was yours.

    Why don’t we all calm down. Everyone already appears to agree that health is an issue. Some of us agree that calls for release of health records should be reasonable in scope and equitable across the different candidates.

    Why not meet us there? Is there any reason to issue inequitable demands for health records? Initial signs of age-related dementias would be less dramatic than a heart attack, but arguably more relevant to determine a candidate’s fitness for office. Likewise, family history of cancer is a predictor of future cancer just as much as a previous heart attack is predictive of future heart attacks. Joe’s son died of cancer.

    And isn’t exactly the conditions that aren’t likely to be independently reported in the media that we most need medical records to confirm? It’s not like no one knew about Sanders’ heart attack until the medical records were released.

    So stop attacking others for positions they don’t hold and statements they haven’t made. Instead, why not get on board with the idea that everyone needs to release their tax records whether they appear wealthy or not, and everyone needs to release their medical records whether they appear healthy or not?

  58. KG says

    Good grief, why are you lecturing me? – Crip Dyke@75

    I wouldn’t have said my #74 amounted to lecturing you rather than defending myself, but in any case, take a look at your #72 (not to mention #75 itself, a sustained piece of angry finger-wagging), then a glance in the mirror.

  59. says

    The difference that justifies my question is that your finger-wagging is for things I never did, such as justifying factual errors.

    Since your finger-wagging is about errors that i never made, it’s fair to ask what actual content in anything I wrote justifies a finger-wag in my direction. Wag your finger at me for having a tone you dislike, fine. You can dislike any tone you want. Wag your finger at me for defending factual error and I have to ask, “What the fuck is going on here?”

  60. consciousness razor says

    1) If I were actually eligible to vote in the primary, I’d probably be collecting more information so my current thoughts aren’t necessarily the best formed thoughts.

    Maybe you should read my comments as relaying some of the possible reasons why they’re so malformed, and what makes them be something other than “the best formed thoughts,” given that we both seem to agree about that (or at least we do now).

    I wouldn’t recommend anyone base their vote on what I say about the situation.

    Duly noted.

    What you’re asking is when should we be telling people that they can’t vote for the people they actually support because we must winnow down the acceptable choices to two so that we will inevitably end up with a majority nominee without the superdelegates coming into play.

    I think there only ought to be one acceptable choice at a minimum. I will accept a single acceptable choice. If we had the luxury of two acceptable choices, that would be acceptable, but it’s not like we “must” have that.
    I’m not sure I understand…. If it’s Sanders and Bloomberg, let’s say, then are you suggesting that I should believe Bloomberg is also an “acceptable choice”? Because I don’t think that.

    That is anti-democratic as fuck.

    No, it isn’t. Superdelegates are anti-democratic as fuck, and so are many other features of our system.

    While the exact timing under which I might recommend that as a necessary strategy depends on certain factual questions, there’s NO FUCKING WAY I’m going to recommend people give up on the idea of voting for the candidate that actually support (even if they’re supporting Tulsi Gabbard) when the only states that have caucused and/or voted are Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada.

    I don’t care what you’re going to recommend. My recommendation isn’t anti-democratic, because I’m talking to people (as I have a right to do) about things they should probably consider whenever they cast a vote, as we all have a right to do. I’m not in any way infringing those rights. I’m not going to endorse a ludicrously anti-democratic system that miscounts them and ignores them, and I do think it’s worth understanding and discussing, so that people will take it into consideration.
    Just don’t fucking insult me with that kind of shit again, because you know very well that everyone here is free as fuck to ignore every word I say in a fucking blog comment.

    If we told people that they have to vote Sanders or Biden or Sanders or Bloomberg or whatever other twosome you prefer so that we could get a majority-supported nominee, how would that anti-democratic strategy be better than a brokered convention?

    What are you even talking about? I didn’t propose a twosome at all. I think progressives should vote for Bernie. That pretty much sums it up.
    No matter what centrist/conservative assholes do with themselves, I have no control over that. Progressive voters who are voting for Bernie have no control over that. And my recommendations to such people have nothing to do with that, because that is not something those people control.
    I could say “you progressives should make sure the non-progressives vote for non-progressive candidate X,” but I wouldn’t, because it would be stupid and pointless. Because ought implies can, as you yourself brought up in your own metaethics thread recently.

  61. says

    What are you even talking about? I didn’t propose a twosome at all.

    You implied a twosome. Under your suggestion, the point of proposing consolidation was bypassing the superdelegates. But bypassing superdelegates requires an actual majority, not a plurality. So long as there are at least 3 candidates, there is no guarantee that any one candidate will garner a majority and thus bypass the superdelegates. Even if “progressives” (however you define them/us) all voted for a single candidate, there might very well be people that like the progressive candidate, but slightly prefer someone else, for whatever reason. It is only when all the other candidates are also collapsed into a single person that we can find out which Buttigieg supporters (for instance) would rather nominate Sanders (for instance) when Buttigieg is no longer a candidate and their only rightward-Democratic choice is Klobuchar (for instance).

    But let’s say you’re not proposing collapsing things to a two person race. Well then there’s no reason to think you’ll magically bypass the superdelegates. In such a situation it’s still likely that no one will get 50% of the delegates. Maybe some people who want the first woman president but are somewhat progressive in policy choose Klobuchar while someone else who wants the first gay boy or a more overtly religious president but is somewhat progressive in policy chooses Buttigieg. Take those options off the table and they won’t go to Biden (or Bloomberg), but leave them on and now you’re back to superdelegates.

    The entire logic of consolidation in order to bypass superdelegates fails, and fails hard, unless you collapse the field to only 2 candidates.

    And this logic is anti-democratic. That doesn’t make superdelegates suddenly democratic. I’m not defending superdelegates. But the logic of this proposal is that you can’t have a diverse slate of candidates because we’re required for some reason (ethics? practicality? I’m not sure) to end up with a nominee that wins 51% of the delegates.

    You can feel free to advocate voting for any candidate for any reason, but the reasoning that you’re employing when you discuss “consolidation” is anti-democratic reasoning. Like violence in self-defense, it’s possible that in a specific situation it might be justified, but the situations in which it would be justified is highly fact-dependent. It’s very hard to create a clear policy or rule that says, “when these criteria are met, consolidation should happen” unless you want a very sucky policy/rule. Now, since you’re the one advocating consolidation, asking me when consolidation should happen is a weird shifting of a burden. There is no guarantee that consolidation is necessary, and there is no guarantee that consolidation would be useful. Given that consolidation is anti-democratic (you should have fewer choices so that the choices that remain appear to have more support!), I won’t support consolidation unless and until it is proved either necessary or at least useful.

    I don’t care what you’re going to recommend.

    hahahahahahahahahahaha. You’re the one that asked me

    At what point would you say that progressives should have a “consolidate before it’s too late” strategy, so that we don’t hand the nomination over to [conserva-Dems]?

    If you don’t care when I would or wouldn’t recommend consolidation, then don’t ask me when I would say that progressives should consolidate.

    This is pretty easy. And it tends to indicate that you’re arguing in bad faith when you ask a question and then throw it in my face and tell me you don’t care about my answer. If you want me to respect you, then when you ask a question and someone takes the time to give you a thoughtful answer, do them the courtesy of thanking them for the time they spent on your agenda instead of “Pfft! Fuck you, don’t care.”

    Of course, it’s also possible that the conversation being spread out over days means that you don’t care now but honestly cared in the moment when you asked the question. In that case it’s not bad faith … but how is your dialogue partner supposed to know the difference?

    One good way would be to apologize abjectly for accidentally wasting my time and accidentally showing me disrespect.

  62. consciousness razor says

    You implied a twosome. Under your suggestion, the point of proposing consolidation was bypassing the superdelegates. But bypassing superdelegates requires an actual majority, not a plurality. So long as there are at least 3 candidates, there is no guarantee that any one candidate will garner a majority and thus bypass the superdelegates.

    I didn’t say anything about a “guarantee.” And I shouldn’t have to do math like this for you, but play a little game of count the candidates:
    Sanders: 51%
    Biden: 10%
    Bloomberg: 10%
    Buttigieg: 10%
    Klobuchar: 10%
    Warren: 9%

    Notice how (1) these numbers add to 100%, (2) Sanders does in fact have a majority in many possible scenarios like this, and (3) there can be many different candidates within that non-Sanders minority. I only listed five other candidates, for realism’s sake, but there is no mathematical/logical reason why it must be a small number (much less exactly one).
    Also, even if Sanders gets some Warren voters on his side and only has a larger plurality than he would’ve had otherwise, that is still to our benefit, because it will still be that much harder for establishment forces to form an effective anti-democratic coalition that can push some other nominee on us, since they would by the same token have fewer votes/delegates than they would’ve had otherwise.
    You generally seem to have missed all the times I talked about what’s “likely” to happen, what you can do to increase the chances of better outcomes rather than worse ones, and so forth. That was the thrust of what I was saying, not a “guarantee” or some such thing.

    But let’s say you’re not proposing collapsing things to a two person race. Well then there’s no reason to think you’ll magically bypass the superdelegates.

    There is no magic. It’s called “arithmetic.” It is useful, and people should use it.

    The entire logic of consolidation in order to bypass superdelegates fails, and fails hard, unless you collapse the field to only 2 candidates.

    This is obviously not the case, as in my counterexample above. Although I don’t understand how you got there, you must have presupposed some shit that you shouldn’t presuppose. Less rhetoric/speculation/garbage, more basic math. All you really had to do was just write down some arbitrary positive numbers that sum to 100, with one of them being greater than 50, as I did before, to see that you’re mistaken.

    And this logic is anti-democratic. That doesn’t make superdelegates suddenly democratic. I’m not defending superdelegates. But the logic of this proposal is that you can’t have a diverse slate of candidates because we’re required for some reason (ethics? practicality? I’m not sure) to end up with a nominee that wins 51% of the delegates.

    First, I didn’t write the rules for the convention which determine how a nominee is selected. Second, in addition to apparently knowing little or nothing about that, you also don’t seem to understand what “democracy” means, because at no point have I been saying anything which is against that.

    This is pretty easy. And it tends to indicate that you’re arguing in bad faith when you ask a question and then throw it in my face and tell me you don’t care about my answer.

    You’ve just confused yourself a lot, about why you aren’t able to give an answer and/or why you should refuse on principle to give one.
    I thought I had a reason to care at one time, but I guess I don’t very much anymore, because you’ve given me very little reason to care. You could say that you’ve convinced me not to care. There was probably an easier and less time-consuming way for you to do that in your first comment, if this was your position all along.

    In that case it’s not bad faith … but how is your dialogue partner supposed to know the difference?

    Well, you’ve known me a long time. And you know that this one statement you blew out of proportion is coming at the end of a long and frustrating discussion, where you’ve been disengaged with many of the points I’ve been trying to raise (many of them plain old factual information that I think you simply didn’t realize). If I had meant it as you interpreted above, I probably would’ve been behaving differently much earlier in the discussion, or at least your only hint wouldn’t be one sentence out of hundreds that I’ve written.
    I think if you were arguing in good faith now, you’d be acting differently, because honestly, this just feels like you’re trying to score some kind of cheap point and get an apology. Whatever it is, I just don’t get that.

    One good way would be to apologize abjectly for accidentally wasting my time and accidentally showing me disrespect.

    I don’t see how. Don’t you want me to agree with you, that I shouldn’t care about your recommendation (since you’re refusing to offer one)?
    Is it that I should care a lot about it, while I (but not you) should also feel dissatisfied that there’s “NO FUCKING WAY” I’ll get it?
    I don’t really get how you expect me to feel…. But I do think that asking for an apology after writing “hahahahahahahahahahaha” makes me suspect that it won’t hurt your feelings very much if I don’t do that.

  63. says

    you also don’t seem to understand what “democracy” means, because at no point have I been saying anything which is against that.

    You’ve been saying that people shouldn’t vote for the candidate that they actually support. That is, by definition, anti-democratic. A democratic argument would change a person’s mind about whom to support.

    The consolidation argument does nothing to convince people Sanders is the better candidate. It doesn’t even try. It’s an anti-democratic argument. You’ve been promoting the consolidation argument, therefore you have been “saying [something] which is against [democracy]”.

    Now, your argument presumes that this is necessary to head off an even-more-anti-democratic possibility: the Democratic party’s use of superdelegates. That’s fine. I’ve conceded in a certain limited number of factual situations it might even be a persuasive argument.

    But violence in self-defense is still violence. Circumstantially justified anti-democratic arguments are still anti-democratic.

    I’m not taking the position that you’re evil. I’m taking the position that your anti-democratic argument is, in fact, anti-democratic. It’s not complicated.

    Well, you’ve known me a long time.

    Yes. I’ve known you long enough to experience you blowing up at me when I said that there exists a thing about Sanders which I do not like, namely that he switched his party registration back and forth over the last 4 or 5 years.

    Despite my factual predicate being undeniably true, and despite my never having said Sanders was bad or anything like that, you jumped up and down on me and even said that you suspected I didn’t honestly hold the belief that I prefer candidates not frequently switch their political party.

    You went on to write volumes about how there was good reason for Sanders to switch party registration and that he was registered this way or that way for god knows how many years, and that Vermont politics are a certain way, all so that you could jump and down on me, and accuse me of dishonesty, for saying one obviously true thing (that Sanders was changing party reg for the 3rd time in a fairly short period) and one thing about which you couldn’t possibly have any evidence to the contrary (my personal opinion that I do not like this fact).

    If people say that they don’t like Sanders’ hair or his voice, I think that’s a pretty stupid reason not to vote for Sanders. But I don’t tell those people that they’re wrong and that they might just be being dishonest about their opinion. I also don’t assume that just because they dislike his hair that they must therefore be unwilling to vote for him or must believe him to be a bad candidate merely because of Sanders’ hair and/or voice. I am still befuddled why you went to such lengths to prove me somehow “wrong” about an obviously true fact or that I was “wrong” to have an opinion that differed from yours based on that true fact and/or that I was dishonest about what my opinion actually was.

    I’d actually respect your position vis a vis Sanders quite a bit more if you were able to simply say, “Yeah, I’m sure some people don’t like that about Sanders, but I hope that’s not going to be a determining factor in your vote. If your vote actually did come down to that one thing, I’d think that was a pretty stupid reason to choose not to vote for Sanders.” Quick. Easy. Shows actual reading comprehension of the fact that saying, “I don’t like that he switched his party reg 3 times” does not include any mention of whether I will or won’t vote for him. Shows a presumption that others are arguing in good faith. And it still clearly expresses your condemnation of a position that you would honestly find condemnable if anyone were to hold it…without assuming that your conversation partner holds that unstated position.

    I don’t care that you disagree with me, I care that consistently misrepresent things I’ve written – especially when it’s all so trivial and unnecessary since 1) I’m not voting in the primary, and 2) disliking one thing about a candidate you generally support is good. It means one is not an irrational fanboy. Whereas your outsized attempts to quash any expression of any opinion (as harmless and factually based as “I like Sanders but I don’t like that he’s constantly switching parties) without ever hearing you say what you don’t like about Sanders becomes a cumulative case for at least the possibility that you’re an irrational fanboy.

    There are many things I like about you cr, but in deciding that I don’t appreciate how you choose to advocate for Sanders, I have far more reasons than simply your dishonest insistence here in this thread that if I were voting for Warren in a hypothetical primary it would only be because I wanted my vote to transfer to Sanders.

    If you actually wanted to convince me or anyone else to vote for Sanders, you’d be better off limiting yourself to just presenting positive facts about Sanders. Attacking other people for having the temerity to actually like a candidate you don’t or for stating that Sanders isn’t 100% perfect isn’t working out well.

  64. consciousness razor says

    You’ve been saying that people shouldn’t vote for the candidate that they actually support. That is, by definition, anti-democratic. A democratic argument would change a person’s mind about whom to support.

    Since you’ve told me you like Sanders, I’ve been assuming all along that you (along with many in the Warren camp) do “actually support” Sanders, in the sense of agreeing with his policies, being happy to vote for him in the general election if he’s the nominee, and so forth.
    There is a huge difference between that and telling to you that you should consider voting for Bloomberg, for instance, and I don’t think it’s honest or helpful to paper over it.
    I think understanding the state of the election, and some general knowledge of how this game works with its arcane rules, should change your mind or have some kind of effect, about which candidate you “support” in terms of which gets your primary vote, whether or not I ever choose to say anything about it.
    Some may not find it a convincing enough reason to change how they’re going to vote in their primary, but that is nonetheless exactly what it was intended to do: to persuade such people (who do support Sanders in the important sense I described above) to think ahead about how it can affect the rest of the primary season and the resulting nominee for the general election.
    And what happens if they don’t find it a convincing enough reason to change their minds? Then presumably, they’ll still vote for Warren, because they don’t need to listen to me or be convinced by me, just like they don’t need to be convinced by anyone making any argument whatsoever in any discussion of politics. As someone who supports democracy, I completely support their right to make that kind of choice on their own. That is why it’s total bullshit to call that “anti-democratic.”

    The rest of your comment is about another thread on another blog from a long time ago. I don’t remember the details, and I didn’t realize you were still holding some weird grudge about me “blowing up” then.

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