Aren’t primaries meant for voting for whom you want?


As the chorus of voices from the Democratic party establishment calling on Bernie Sanders to drop out of the race reaches a crescendo, cartoonist Tom Tomorrow asked a very pertinent question a few months ago.

Tom Tomorrow If not now, when

Comments

  1. says

    Judging by the comments of both party leaders and party loyalists on the internet. I’ve perceived a very notorious contempt for the youth and not-real-democrats. I think that a “third party insurgency” is brewing, but not by Bernie Sanders’ doing. That might not be such a terrible problem.

    At this point, looking at the general behavior of the DNC and the democratic party loyalists, I don’t think they’re gonna give Bernie the nomination. Even if he did get a majority of the vote (unlikely due to foul play and/or incompetence), they would pull out the super-delegates to subvert that. Even if the FBI indicted Hillary before the convention (unlikely, if there is an indictment at all, it will come after the nomination, when it’s too late to go back to Bernie), the Democratic party leadership has already hinted that they would put up Joe Biden as the candidate, not Bernie. Never Bernie.

    Given that sorry state of affairs I have come to the conclusion that in the event of Bernie Sanders loosing, the only path forward is to do everything to stop the worse evil from achieving power…

    …That would be Hillary.

  2. dianne says

    A few months ago, Sanders was a viable candidate with a chance of winning the primaries. His running and voting for him at that time made perfect sense. At this point, though, I’m not sure why he’s still running. He’d have to win by extremely large margins in California and New Jersey to make up for the deficit in delegates (NOT COUNTING SUPERDELEGATES) and he is currently running behind in both states in the polls. His pulling out the nomination seems extremely unlikely at this point. So what’s the goal behind continuing to run? Does he want to pull the party to the left? If so, he should probably start looking for ways to build bridges back to the probable nominee, not alienate her further. Does he want Trump to win so that he can run in 2020? If so, he’s doing everything as he should.

  3. Dunc says

    So what’s the goal behind continuing to run?

    To give the people who haven’t yet had the opportunity to vote for him in a primary the chance to do so, in order to express their political preferences to the party?

    In other forms of election, do you think we should just stop counting votes as soon as it becomes clear which candidate has won? There’s more to democracy than winning.

  4. jrkrideau says

    Great cartoon.

    I must admit though, as someone coming from a British Parliamentary tradition that while the primaries make good theatre I have never been able to grasp how they work.

    I mean, I understand the actual process but the principles behind them remain completely opaque. And I have had several Americans including a grade-school civics teacher try to explain them.

    It was interesting to see the strange collection of Republican candidates that emerged from under rocks and out of woodpiles.

  5. Sam N says

    Seriously dianne? Did you even pay attention to content of this post at all? As a registered Democrat, should I be denied my voice in the primary because I live in California and not Iowa? People like me aren’t continuing a monthly donation to Sanders because we are delusional and think he will win the nomination. I’m continuing my donation through July because I want my progressive voice to be heard.

    And Lurker from mexico, more like troll from Mexico. Despite the bias of the DNC, they didn’t ‘steal’ the election. And a third party insurgency is a terrible idea. Learn from the Tea Party. Miserable cretins though they are, they’ve been very successful at pushing Republicans ever further rightward. Register as a Democrat, participate in Democratic primaries, but volunteer, fund, and support a separate organization from the DNC that challenges Democratic candidates in primaries from the left.

  6. dianne says

    To give the people who haven’t yet had the opportunity to vote for him in a primary the chance to do so, in order to express their political preferences to the party?

    I guess so. Seems kind of an expensive and futile way to go about it, though. Should a candidate with essentially no chance of winning still continue their candidacy in order to give voters in the later states their chance to express their preferences? Is this a good use of time compared to concentrating on shaping the platform for the general election? Maybe the whole series of primaries over several months thing should be abandoned in favor of having all the primaries on a single day or at least over no more than a month so that voters in the later primaries have the same range of choices as those in the early primaries. That would probably end up with there being no majority winner in many cases, but that’s what the convention is for: to work those differences out.

  7. doublereed says

    @2 lurker from mexico

    As Sanders has been saying this entire time, Sanders isn’t about Sanders. It’s not a cult of personality like Donald Trump. It’s about the corrupt system and how politicians do not represent the people, but the donors.

    Obama did the same thing in 2008. He said he was going to change the system, but he didn’t. Those people who are disappointed in him didn’t go away. They grew, because now those people are older. When they talk about Bernie Supporters being young, what they mean is “under 40.” That’s not actually that young. And in 2020, young will probably mean “under 45.”

    If Bernie Sanders somehow sells his soul to the financial industry and becomes totally corrupt, then the movement will just leave him behind. The movement will be there for the next real progressive to come along.

  8. Dunc says

    Seems kind of an expensive and futile way to go about it

    Unfortunately, that’s pretty much democracy for you…

    Maybe the whole series of primaries over several months thing should be abandoned in favor of having all the primaries on a single day or at least over no more than a month so that voters in the later primaries have the same range of choices as those in the early primaries.

    Well, as an observer from the UK, the whole concept of primaries seems utterly bizarre to me, no matter how you do it. But yes, this business of having them spread out over several months seems particularly weird, and of deeply questionable merit. I can’t help suspecting that the whole point is to drag out the horse-race aspect of presidential election season to a completely ludicrous degree, so as to avoid having to deal with actual politics.

  9. dianne says

    Unfortunately, that’s pretty much democracy for you…

    Is it? The UK seems to me not undemocratic, but it manages without this multi-year buildup. Though I can’t say I’m impressed with your latest pick.

    I can’t help suspecting that the whole point is to drag out the horse-race aspect of presidential election season to a completely ludicrous degree, so as to avoid having to deal with actual politics.

    Or perhaps to drag it out to the profit of 24 hour news stations and others who make their money off of the horse race? Not incompatible with your explanation.

  10. Dunc says

    Yeah, I didn’t mean to imply that the lengthy primary season is a necessary component of democracy, I was just being snarky about the expense and efficacy of democracy in general – the current UK front bench, composed as it is of minor aristocrats, landed gentry, and multi-millionaires, being a fairly good example… Eight major Reform Acts since the Great Reform Act of 1832, and we’ve still got a parliament that would be familiar to Pitt the Younger.

  11. says

    @6 Sam N
    I’m sorry if I said something inappropriate. But the Democratic leadership did say they would go to Biden in the event of a Clinton indictment. That says to me that they don’t really care at all for Sanders, which is terrible to me.
    I LIKE SANDERS. I agree with the ideals he represents. I admire the unending patience and resolve of his supporters. If I had a right to vote in your elections, I’d vote for him.

    When I talk about the possibility of a third party insurgency I don’t mean it as a suggestion. I’m not trying to troll anyone. It just seems like a very real possibility, triggered by de Democratic leadership’s open disdain for Sanders’ supporters.

    He’s not yet mathematically eliminated, he still has a path forward (however narrow) and you should get a chance of making your voice heard. Still, the Democratic Party has been relentless in attacking both him and his supporters. They have made their intentions clear to stonewall him at every opportunity.

    A liberal Tea Party would make a lot of sense but, again, Hillary Clinton has shown herself to be arrogant and unwilling to listen to liberals. She’s winning, she doesn’t care.

    @8 doublereed
    I hear you and I agree, Sanders isn’t about Sanders. The movement will keep going with or without him, and I’m glad to know that. BTW, I don’t know if you’ve already heard of this, they are a movement (independent of Sanders) fighting to take money out of american politics.
    http://www.wolf-pac.com

    I just want to make the point that while Sanders and Stein would be strongly in favor of your cause, Clinton is shaping up to be biggest possible obstacle. With her in power you’ll be fighting both republicans and status quo democrats in order to make any meaningful change, and her ties to corporate interests and the military-industrial complex run way deeper than Trump’s.

  12. Sam N says

    I apologize for being a bit rash, lurker, but your support of Trump over Clinton lead me to believe you were arguing in bad faith. I see you genuinely think a Trump presidency would be a blow to the military-industrial complex and corporate interests. I posit it is wishful thinking. I agree, as stands, Trump’s ties are weaker than Clinton’s, but how long do you think that will last? Trump’s criticism of military misadventures are only because he didn’t have power over them–on the contrary, his rival’s brother did. Do you really think someone that calls for more torture and collective punishment will, once given influence over the US military, decide not to use and support it?

    I don’t like Clinton, and I know she won’t listen to my voice, or that of other progressive, who want to uphold real humanitarian principles with regards to foreign policy, but the way to combat that isn’t to create a third party when we have no general election run-off system. However, if we elect more Democrats into congress in the mold of Warren and Sanders, and have more progressives registered as Democrats and participating in primaries, instead of eschewing the label as I admittedly did through the 00s, the establishment will start to shift in kind.

  13. says

    @13 Sam N
    I don’t think Trump will be anywhere near as effective in implementing any of the hateful bullshit he might try to do, his own party hates him*, and there is a big chance that they’ll oppose him if he were in office. Which would be a situation where Democrats and a significant segment of Republicans are actively trying to stop him.
    Meanwhile, Clinton is very clearly her party’s darling*. The republicans will obviously fight her on social issues, but she’ll be virtually unopposed in her wars and in her corporate interests.

    I agree with you in that participating (or as some Clinton supporters call it “hijacking”) in the Democratic party, to make it shift to the left would certainly be the best long-term strategy.

    However, given the bitterness of this primary, the open contempt that the progressive movement has received from both party leaders and surrogates, and considering that this is the first political experience of a lot of millenials. I just don’t see any motivation for them to stay.

    *meaning the party leadership/establishment, not necessarily the voters.

  14. Nick Gotts says

    I don’t think Trump will be anywhere near as effective in implementing any of the hateful bullshit he might try to do, his own party hates him

    Party leaders who had previously opposed him are already lining up behind him. Sheldon Adelson has promised to put £100,100,000 into his campaign (if you don’t know who Adelson is, you shouldn’t pretend to know anything about US politics). That’s just two weeks after it became clear Trump would be the nominee. Trump doesn’t care about anything a hundredth as much as he cares about Trump, so it costs him nothing to give the republican elite all the theocracy, corporate power and electoral corruption they want. You can’t vote for Trump without voting for everything the Republican Party has come to stand for over the past few decades. Sure, Clinton stinks. But for sheer vomit-inducing putrescence, she’s got nothing on Trump and what he will bring in behind him if he wins.

  15. doublereed says

    @lurker

    As I have already pointed out to others, Trump is far more dangerous than people estimate. He has already praised the Japanese Internment camps, brazenly supported torture, and calls for religious bans and mass deportations. This has all the hallmarks of fascism and genocide. He has already had a violent effect on American politics evidenced by the even further increase in anti-Muslim hate crimes.

    You say he won’t be effective. I don’t know why. We were effective at interning the Japanese. It’s not something that was completely hamstrung by the legal process. You seem to suffering from a delusion of “well it couldn’t happen here!”

    Why anyone would want a white supremacist to be the most powerful person in the world is beyond me. This isn’t a hard decision. I find it so baffling that people think the best way to win is to lose. Enough with the idiotic strategies that people think are just so brilliant. Fascists should not be president.

  16. says

    @15 Nick Gotts
    And Bush’s donors are running to Hillary Clinton…

    @16 doublereed
    I think both you and Nick underestimate just how harmful Hillary Clinton has already been in the past, and how much worse she will be in a position of power.

    I know that most americans are virtually unaware of the dire consequences of imperialism and no-liberal politics, but down here in Latin America we live through that shit everyday. I’ve been seeing a lot of honduran refugees begging on the streets lately, and it pains me that because of the recent Mexican Energy Reform, they’ll probably have to seek shelter elsewhere, since the economy of my town is pretty much entirely dependent on the socialist oil industry that the reform is undermining.

    Hillary Clinton was involved in the Honduran Military Coup.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/wp/2016/04/19/hillary-clintons-dodgy-answers-on-honduras-coup/
    http://www.thenation.com/article/chronicle-of-a-honduran-assassination-foretold/
    Hillary Clinton wrote the Mexican Energy Reform.
    http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Wikileaks-Hilary-Clinton-Pushed-Mexicos-Oil-Privatization-20150810-0011.html

    That’s just the two things that I’ve personally encountered in my daily life.

    She sent thousands of honduran child refugees back into the mess she helped make, all because she wanted to “send a message” (her own words). Honduras is currently the murder capital of the world.

    As a senator she voted for the Iraq war. Even though she admits that that was a mistake, she proceeded to make it again, pushing for further military involvement in Syria.

    The syrian no-fly zone she’s been relentlessly pushing for is practically guaranteed to provoke a military conflict with Russia if upheld.

    The consequences of Hillary Clinton and the interventionism she represents are dire. I believe that if more americans knew of it they would be way less eager to support that kind of monstrosity.

    Donald Trump has actually been criticized for being an “isolationist”. You have no idea how attractive the prospect of an “isolationist” America can be for third world countries.
    http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/b73592ec-0d53-11e6-ad80-67655613c2d6.html#axzz497iEgr16

    Stein would be great, but I don’t think that’s a viable option. Sanders would be best, his socialism could catch on here since Mexico has a bit of a history of successful socialist programs, with the added benefit that he will actually respect the sovereignty of foreign nations.

    But if the question is “Who’s worse, Clinton or Trump?”, the answer is “The one that already has a body count”.

  17. busterggi says

    “Why anyone would want a white supremacist to be the most powerful person in the world is beyond me. ”

    13.5 million Germans disagreed in 1932.

    And the baggers/theofacists/gun nuts/klanners in the US would love to do even better.

  18. says

    @8 doublereed “As Sanders has been saying this entire time, Sanders isn’t about Sanders. It’s not a cult of personality like Donald Trump. It’s about the corrupt system and how politicians do not represent the people, but the donors.”

    I’m not so sure about that…I can agree that it is not a cult of personality, but I don’t see the campaign going much deeper than Sanders. I was noting after this Nevada fiasco that I had been getting a lot of texts and phone calls to remind me, as a Sanders delegate, to go to conventions. But do you know what they have not been saying? They haven’t suggested that I join committees or anything like that where one could potentially have an impact on the party beyond just this election.

    I find that to be a huge miss on part of the campaign if it wants to truly take on the system.

    That’s not to say I think Sanders is lying about wanting to take on the system. Rather, I am more in agreement with those who think he just didn’t have a solid plan for taking on the system. His plan seemed to be to reignite the OWS movement and the rest would take care of itself. That’s a bad plan.

  19. anat says

    I am fortunate in that I will probably have the chance to vote for a Bernie supporter to Congress.

  20. Holms says

    I don’t think Trump will be anywhere near as effective in implementing any of the hateful bullshit he might try to do, his own party hates him

    Party leaders who had previously opposed him are already lining up behind him.

    Yes, I think A Lurker From Mexico has overlooked the fact that one of the defining characteristics of the Republican party is tribalism. When the time comes to choose between backing a piece of legislation for example, the main thing they will look for is not how good the thing might be, but whether it was produced by a Republican.

    And bear in mind also the fact that the current congress is dominated by Republicans.

  21. says

    @21 Holms

    Talking about tribalism. One of the recent attacks on Bernie Sanders is on his history of being an Independent and having turned Democrat only for the nomination. Now, this is anecdotal evidence, but I see that it’s been particularly effective on the most tribalistic democratic loyalists. “He’s no real democrat”, “He’s hijacking our party”, “Who do this people think they are coming into OUR party to tell us what to do” are just a couple samples of what I’ve seen stated by this characters.

    This on a person that, while only recently a democrat, shares a lot of the values that democrats supposedly hold dear.

    Donald Trump was a Democrat for a really long time, he even donated to Hillary Clinton’s campaigns on several occasions. So he is similar to Bernie if only on their newcomer status.
    Ideologically he was pro-choice until it stopped being cool, and currently he is to the left of Hillary herself on several key issues. His recent attack on her Iraq vote has the odd distinctions of both coming from the left and also being one of the impossibly odd times when EVERYTHING he said was true.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yIg5ntYCL-E

    Don’t you think you might be overlooking that aspect in your tribalism calculus?

  22. says

    There is a bit of a historical trend I’ve noticed, perhaps some americans fail to do so because the consequences are heavily underreported in your country.

    Every time americans get spooked by something it is us who pay the price. Just off the top of my head:

    Americans were deadly afraid of communists, we got student massacres.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tlatelolco_massacre
    Americans got scared by drugs, mexicans got killed in the crossfire.
    http://www.abc.es/internacional/20150811/abci-guerra-narco-muertos-irak-201508101829.html
    On the international scale, americans got spooked once by muslims, now the middle east is on fire.

    Today you are afraid of Trump. One shudders thinking about what the price tag will be for that.

  23. John Morales says

    A Lurker from mexico:

    Ideologically he was pro-choice until it stopped being cool […]

    FFS. What you’ve written is that he was pro-cool, not that he was pro-choice — confusing cause and effect.

    (Sometimes I do wish people would understand the terminology they employ)

    e.g.

    Americans were deadly afraid of communists, we got student massacres.

    Had you used the same method as above, you’d have written that Americans were pro-student massacres until they stopped being anti-communist.

    Also, when did you begin to imagine that Mexicans weren’t Americans? Norteamericanos, even.

    (Yeah, I know you’re using a common metonym, but it nonetheless irritates me)

  24. says

    @24 John Morales
    That was some impressive debating skills over my mastery of my not-native-language. Hopefully someday you’ll start attacking substance over style.

    Since it’s (what’s the term? United-statians?) who consistently started referring to themselves as “American”, I imagined it would be the polite term to use.

    I can call you gringo hijo de tu chingada madre, if you prefer.

  25. doublereed says

    Donald wasn’t against Iraq when it mattered in 2003. Against ISIS he has even said that we should “take their oil.”

    Honestly I have no idea what people are talking about when they say Trump is not imperialist. He says a few token things that he walks back and people actually take him seriously. It shocks me to how people take what they want to hear and ignore the rest. Trump has never implied that he is a dove in any way.

    “Left of Hillary.” Riiiiight.

  26. doublereed says

    Okay, pretend for the sake of it that I got the details of Trump’s bizarre Iraq stances accurate. Point is that he is a blatant hypocrite on that and it’s foolish to believe he would be less warlike or less imperial.

  27. says

    @28 doublereed
    So, he’s a hypocritical liar who will take whatever stance on whatever topic as long as it suits him. Agreed.
    Just wondering why that invalidates his comments on Iraq, but not his comments on Mexico, for example.

    Mentioning the year of his comment (2003) is a bit of an odd move. You’re saying he came 2 years too late to the conclusion that Iraq was a mistake. Hillary Clinton, despite admitting that her vote on that was a mistake, still supports military occupations in the middle east (a No fly zone over Syria necessarily implies sending ground troops), she learned nothing.

    Donald Trump arrived 2 years late to the obvious conclusion. Hillary Clinton has taken 15 years and still hasn’t quite come around to it.

    I don’t for one second believe this is stupidity or ineptitude on her part. She clearly has al the tools and knowledge she could possibly need to arrive to the correct conclusion. She just can’t pass such promising “business opportunities”.

  28. doublereed says

    Nothing he says is invalidated, but to remark that he’s rambling against Clinton’s Iraq vote says nothing when he’s advocating the same thing against ISIS right now. Like you’re criticizing Clinton for basically the same thing.

    Like his talk about Iraq is more like “I could have done it better. What a mess.” It’s not like he’s advocating against the actual idea of the war.

    Trump is a fascist, litigates against free speech, disregards the concept of sovereignty entirely. The guy is an imperialist.

    Comparing him to Clinton is like comparing McCain to Mussolini. Like I get it: Clinton is awful and a warmonger.
    But Trump is even worse.

  29. says

    @30 doublereed
    “…disregards the concept of sovereignty…” Clinton literally wrote mexican law! The Mexican Energy Reform was drafted by her and two of her goons.
    As much as she’s tried to weasel herself out of her own words, she lobbied for the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Excuse me, what does subordinating the policies of latin american an asian governments to a corporate council sound like to you? Down here we call that shit Imperialism.

    Honestly I don’t get your point, are you saying that Trump is but Clinton isn’t? Because, if you’re trying to make a comparison between the two of them, the shit she has already done as both senator and secretary of state is worse than anything you can find in all of Trump’s biography so far. She has a history of this shit, he doesn’t.
    When you try to invoke the things that he might do, could do, wants to do, in order to make him sound worse, you forget to account for their capabilities.
    She’s shown herself to be extremely willing and able of overthrowing foreign governments. Her connections to the military industrial complex are well known. Trump knows how to read a crowd, how to get attention and that’s about it. Clinton knows how to break a country.

    She’s been involved in the privatization of mexican natural resources, in the drug war, in the honduran coup, in the Iraq invasion, some horrible blunders in Libya, in Syria, in Egypt. She bullies governments into supporting trade agreements that gut our labor rights and kill our local businesses. She supports right-wing theocratic dictatorships as long as they fall in line with american interests. She helps overthrow left-wing democratically elected governments that don’t.

    I’m only talking about shit she ALREADY DID. This is her history. There are no ambiguities about her imperialism.

    You talk about shit Trump “might do, maybe… I mean… he said he would, y’know… he’s a bit of a liar but I think he was honest about that… I’m not sure if he actually knows how to do any of that, though… but he’ll manage, somehow”.

    As I said above. Americans get a freaking phobia every couple of decades, and every time they do WE in the rest of the world are left to pick up the pieces.You americans always get scared into doing something immensely stupid:
    Get freaked out by commies, meddle in every other country in the world and threaten nuclear armageddon.
    Get freaked out by drugs, ban harmless marihuana and force all of latin america into a pointless drug war.
    Get freaked out by muslims, invade the wrong fucking country.
    Get freaked out by Trump, put the trigger happy poster child of everything wrong with America in charge.

  30. Holms says

    #22
    Overlooking what? That he changes his stances on a whim? I specifically pointed exactly that out when making the point that he cannot be taken at his word on virtually anything; the sole exception I can think of is that he probably truly wants to implement his proposed tax plan, and even then only because it mostly benefits people like him.

    And ‘left of Clinton’ dear god no. He is an unrepentant authoritarian.

  31. says

    @32 Holms
    Overlooking that he’s not with the republican party on the issues. To be honest, the fact that they can support him despite having being in favor of “baby-killing” (Their characterization), while the democrats constantly attack Bernie for not being a true democrat is making it look like Democrats are bigger on tribalism than Republicans.

    His statements on trade deals and interventionism are very much left of Clinton.

    Is supporting the Iraq war the left-wing position now? When the fuck did that happen?

  32. patrick2 says

    @A Lurker from mexico

    I agree with most of what you say about Clinton, but it’s quite a stretch to think Trump is better. He supported invading Iraq in 2002, and has since said invading Iraq was a mistake, but that the US should have taken Iraq’s oil now that they were there. Is that much preferable to Clinton?

    He also vowed to tear up the nuclear agreement with Iran, which Clinton hasn’t, and said he supports carpet bombing and sending ground troops to Syria.

    The only way Trump MIGHT be preferable to Clinton is that he’d be much less competent than her in implementing his foreign policies, and so might do less damage by accident. But that’s a real stretch.

  33. doublereed says

    I’m comparing Trump to goddamn Mussoulini, lurker. Actual, unrelenting fascism.

    You keep being baffled about how Trump could possibly be worse than Clinton because she’s so horrible. But there is no bottom of the barrel. There is no “worst.” There is always room for even more grotesque behavior. All signs point to Trump being more brutal, more militaristic, and more reckless than Clinton’s policies.

  34. doublereed says

    I don’t think anyone here is supporting the Iraq war or that such a position is left wing. Let’s not misrepresent each other here. I think it’s a pretty serious and important conversation to have.

  35. doublereed says

    When you say Trump is to the left of Clinton in terms of interventionism, I want to know what you’re talking about. Are you just talking about Iraq?

    Because I would strongly disagree with that idea.

  36. says

    @34 patrick2
    While she officially supported the Iran deal. I’ve seen rumors of Netanyahu convincing her that it’s not a good deal. I saw the report a while ago and, since major news media are tip-toeing around Hillary’s weaknesses it might take me some time finding the report on it but I’ll look into it. Admittedly the report I read was mostly hearsay.

    @36 doublereed
    Holms said “Left of Clinton? dear god no”, which necessarily implies that the content of that attack “Iraq was a mistake that should be avoided” is in fact not a left-wing position. How is that a misrepresentation?

    The specific attack I saw was about Iraq mostly. He has also spoken against international trade agreements. That is, as far as my understanding goes, the left-wing position on that topic.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yIg5ntYCL-E

    Both you and patrick2 fall for the arguments I mentioned are necessarily flawed. I personally don’t understand why you’d give more weight to the hypothetical future actions of candidate A than to the real past and present actions of candidate B when determining who’s worse. Care to explain those priorities?

  37. patrick2 says

    @38 A Lurker from mexico

    I personally don’t understand why you’d give more weight to the hypothetical future actions of candidate A than to the real past and present actions of candidate B when determining who’s worse. Care to explain those priorities?

    Because the things Trump has said he’ll do (carpet bomb Syria and send ground troops there, become more belligerent with Iran, reintroduce torture, etc) are at least as bad as things Clinton has already done, if not worse. Combine that with the extremely reckless and fascistic nature of his domestic platform, his dangerous views on critically important things like climate change, and I think it’s fair to consider Trump a bigger threat to the world than Hillary Clinton.

  38. doublereed says

    But also keep in mind that he’s been grossly litigious and petty when it comes to slander, and giving him the FBI and DOJ to someone like threatens to spiral us in fascism and oppression, even moreso than someone like Clinton. Look at that pathetic Erdogan in Turkey.

    You’re basically making an appeal to ignorance, and trying to ignore the horrible effect Trump has already had on the country. He’s already given significant mainstream voice to fascist and white supremacist groups.

    Again, you keep getting stuck on “how could it be worse” which is just lack of imagination.

  39. Holms says

    Lurker, I really don’t think you and I have the same meaning in mind when we say the word tribalism. It means to adhere to some demographic similarity – clan, religion, nationality, ethnicity and such – above all other considerations such as actual policies. Or in the context of this conversation, political party. So when you list off the political issues on which Trump diverges from the usual Republican position, and when you point out that they are sticking to him no matter what he has said or is currently saying on any issue, you are pointing out that they are adhering to him simply because of their shared Republican affiliation above all other considerations.

    That is, you are pointing out that they exactly match the definition of tribalism.

    Worse, you go on to point out that the Democrat party is actually rejecting one of their candidates, despite his shared Democrat affiliation, probably due to his opposition to money in politics and cosy relationships between candidates and moneyed interests. They are rejecting him due to policy over political affiliation, and hence, they are not nearly as tribalistic as the Republicans.

  40. says

    @39 patrick2
    Hillary Clinton does want to send troops to Syria, it’s a necessary implication of installing a No-Fly zone, but people don’t talk about it because the corporate media consistently treats Clinton with kid gloves, tip-toeing around her weaknesses and so on.
    That you mention Trump’s stance on climate change as a point of contrast with Clinton is just an example of this kind of thing.

    Liberals, who are otherwise critical thinkers, will uncritically assume that she’s either doing something to help or, at the very least, not going out of her way to harm the environment. As secretary of state she sold fracking to the world. She has ties with the oil industry. That she’s somehow ‘good’ on environmental policies is just one of the many assumptions people make because she’s the ‘D’ and the other guy’s the ‘R’.

    Even if Trump’s real plans (kinda hard to discern from his bullshit plans) happen to be worse than Hillary’s, there is one thing that makes her more dangerous. A significant segment of the left is unaware of the danger, they haven’t gotten any information about it and they won’t see it coming. A smaller, but also significant segment, actively refuses to listen to any and all criticism of Hillary Clinton, hand waiving it as either misogyny or a nebulous right-wing conspiracy dedicated to bringing her down.

    @40 doublereed
    Yeah, there is no lack of imagination. I can totally imagine worse. I can make up elaborate scenarios where Hillary nukes California and Trump causes an amish genocide. That I can imagine it doesn’t make it truer or likelier.

    One of them is worse than the other. We are in disagreement as to whom. I think that the person with the bigger body-count, more regime changes under their belt and a longer history of supporting harmful laws is worse. You seem to disagree, that’s fair.

    What I don’t understand is that your disagreement seems to be based on the hypothetical worse-ness of the person that does not have the bigger body-count, does not have a single regime change to their name and hasn’t had any ware near the same degree of consequence in american legislation.

    @41 Holms
    Both Trump and Sanders have a newcomer status in their respective parties. One got accepted, despite not filling the mold. The other one is being attacked for not being a “real” member. I think that the second attitude is more tribalistic, am I wrong?

  41. Holms says

    Yes, I insist you are wrong on this point. Trump is accepted despite all other differences, and most former enemies are flocking to him, purely because of the shared Republican affiliation. That mindless banding together is tribalism. Sanders is being rejected by his own party on the basis of his policies, despite having the same affiliation of them. That is not what I would term tribalism.

  42. says

    @43 Holms
    Having read hundreds of different variations of “he’s not a real democrat” form party affiliates, party leaders and at least one from Clinton herself, a major part of the rejection doesn’t seem to be policy-based at all. Tribalism also means rejecting people for being “the other”.

  43. Holms says

    I’m not disputing whether there is any tribalism exhibited by Democrats, I’m disputing that the level of tribalism they display is not even close to what is in the Republican party.

  44. patrick2 says

    @42 A Lurker from mexico

    Hillary Clinton does want to send troops to Syria, it’s a necessary implication of installing a No-Fly zone, but people don’t talk about it because the corporate media consistently treats Clinton with kid gloves, tip-toeing around her weaknesses and so on.That you mention Trump’s stance on climate change as a point of contrast with Clinton is just an example of this kind of thing.

    I haven’t actually said a word defending Hillary Clinton, I basically agree with what you said about her. But to say Trump would be better, you’re picking a few scraps of things he’s said (talking about civilian deaths in US wars, criticising some trade deals) and ignoring the vast majority of other things he’s said.

    Liberals, who are otherwise critical thinkers, will uncritically assume that she’s either doing something to help or, at the very least, not going out of her way to harm the environment. As secretary of state she sold fracking to the world. She has ties with the oil industry. That she’s somehow ‘good’ on environmental policies is just one of the many assumptions people make because she’s the ‘D’ and the other guy’s the ‘R’.

    I don’t think she’s good on environmental policies. But she has indicated support for at least minor measures to address climate change, while Trump has said climate change is a fraud and we should continue doing everything that’s contributing to it. Deciding which of them is better on environmental issues, even if only marginally, isn’t that complicated.

  45. John Morales says

    Well, duh. Everyone seems to miss the very point of the post.

    Synecdoche.

    The nominee is the party, the party is the nominee.

    Pointless to argue either that Trump is not the Republican Party or that the Democratic Presumed Elect is not its converse.

    (Two party system without even the sop of a preferential system sucks for you Americans*)

    * Amused nod towards the lurker from Mejico.

  46. says

    @46 patrick2
    Trump’s evil is overt, Hillary’s is hidden. That makes her more dangerous.

    I’m not saying that you are defending her, I’m saying that you underestimate her.

    The scenario that worries me is that after the general election, the natural opposition to war, interventionism and corporatism will be complacent. “We got the liberal, that’s good, right?”. The uglier side of Hillary’s policies is consistently underreported. She hardly ever gets challenged on Honduras, Syria, and so on… so much so that her campaign successfully refers to foreign policy as one of her “strengths” over Bernie. The consequences of her actions are consistently ignored by the bulk of the mainstream media, especially the things that affect Latin America.

    A significant segment of Democrats, when confronted with the consequences of her past decisions responds with either “Nah, she can’t be That Bad”, “but that was not her fault” or “Lies! Right-Wing Conspiracy! Republican Talking Points!”.

    On 2017 there would be more people, both in and out of power, opposing President Trump from the get-go than people opposing President Clinton (at least on the things you’d want her to be opposed). Since you admit that “…the things Trump has said he’ll do […] are at least as bad as things Clinton has already done, if not worse.” the fact that Hillary will be more effective in doing them should be enough cause to determine her as the worse option.

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