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Had it with the Democratic Party

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Rather than make any substantive changes, Obama let his Wall Street donors staff his White House and let hard-working families lose their houses while bailing out the crooks on Wall Street.

I’ve had it with the Democratic Party.

I caucused for Bernie Sanders and worked hard for him here in Minnesota and in other states. Most of our local DFL politicians decided that their ability to fundraise from mega donors with Hillary Clinton was more important to them than respecting the will of the voters they will be relying on to get re-elected. We already have one big-business-favoring, mega-donor-loving party that does not give a darn about the lives of working Americans. If Democrats can’t figure out that we don’t need a second one I’ll just vote for the GOP till they get the message or the country implodes. The climate is already trashed and Clinton and President Obama’s pro-fracking, pro-Wall-Street, anti-average-people policies aren’t helping anyone who hasn’t donated thousands of dollars to them.

Trickle-down cheerleaders

Democrats have been making fun of trickle-down economics publicly since I can remember, but privately they have been among its biggest cheerleaders. President Ronald Reagan may have cut the top tax rate from 70 percent to 30 percent, starting the wealth accumulation at the top, but it was President Bill Clinton who deregulated the banks with the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA) and the Commodity Futures Modernization Act (CFMA) that forced the middle class deeper and deeper into debt and eventually created the great recession.

Obama had the biggest mandate in a generation to change the status quo as he got elected amid the financial collapse. Rather than make any substantive changes, however, he let his Wall Street donors staff his White House and let hard-working families lose their houses while bailing out the crooks on Wall Street. Neither party cares about anyone who doesn’t have a nine-digit bank account.

Slower road, same bankruptcy

Relying on identity politics to bring people to the polls so they can vote for the team that wants to bankrupt them a little more slowly than the other guys is not a good enough message. If David Brock and George Soros have anything to do with the Democratic Party going forward you can count the grass-roots activists out. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and other DFLers running in 2018 need to make it clear where they stand — with the American people or with the billionaire financiers who want to keep the game rigged. And empty platitudes like Hillary Clinton’s won’t suffice.

I guess we will see in the next year or two if the Democrats learned anything or if they continue to try desperately to be the 1 percent’s backup party.

Phil Uhrich is a grass-roots activist.

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Comments (106)

  1. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 11/30/2016 - 10:19 am.

    Yes, but…

    …the GOP alternative is one I can’t support at all, and not in my lifetime is the general public in this country going to support, much less adopt, Scandinavian-style democratic-capitalist-socialism. I certainly agree that People of Money have purchased both major political parties, but one of those parties has a social agenda from from the early 19th century, when everyone remained in the closet, women were chattel, and speaking of chattel, people of color were routinely treated as such, and the notion that the wealthy were somehow superior to the rest of the population was, sometimes literally, enshrined in stone. The other party is increasingly dominated by the narrow interests of an assortment of aggrieved social, racial, cultural and occupational minorities. Given that choice, and even though I’m an elderly Caucasian male whose income has never reached the median, I’ll go for the minorities rather than the 19th century every time.

    In other words, yes, I’m very disappointed by the Democratic Party in recent years, and my support for Democrats will be less-than-enthusiastic unless/until the party regains the core beliefs that led to its 20th century successes. In the meantime, wealthy Democrats don’t represent my interests much better than wealthy Republicans, but “not much better” is far, far better than “absolutely opposed,” which is what characterizes the GOP. I’m appalled, genuinely appalled, by the misogynist, neofascist direction of the Republican Party, coupled with its increasing support, through tax policy, of the development of an American aristocracy with which Louis XIV would feel a kindred spirit.

    • Submitted by Jim Million on 11/30/2016 - 04:44 pm.

      Social Agendas [general response here, not personal for sure]

      As one long ago tired of the two bitter machines of self-perpetuation, I know I’ve been quite open about non-partisan positioning for many years. My only slight hackle-raising comes when I read something to the effect that an “independent” is some kind of “conscientious objector” from WW II. Such nonsense in that position is neither accurate nor fair. If a national election ever called for “independent” thinking and voting, this was the one of my lifetime since age 21.

      Many of us are becoming fossilized, for sure. In case other readers have not noticed, our general electorate clearly has turned against both Red and Blue “usual suspects,” at least in White House residency.
      Everyone can grouse about everything, I suppose. I’ve passed by too many old Leftovers and Regurgitated Righteousness here this year than healthy for anyone not requiring an encounter session [so far].

      Do any other comment generators simply understand the superficial blog tactics of chain pulling? At least MinnPost mostly ignores the 2-cycle engines out there, seemingly directing its positioning toward 4-cycle folk.

      Anyone who cannot understand the American Left’s tried and tired repetition in European-style strategies of agitation/demonstration/civil arrogance campaigns as manipulation of small minds just has not paid much attention since 1968. The Red-Blooded Right’s continued campaign of reactionary rebellion is equally manipulative and self-serving.

      In general, Americans have reached the position of many Europeans as of 2016: disdain and disengagement. Those who love whatever they believe to be comfortable status quo, should perhaps also recognize realities of both well-tuned, self-maintaining political machines: they do function to keep themselves running against each other, and likely for each other, to some perverse purpose.

      I consider neither fleet operation needs us little people as gas station attendants, pumping fuel into their respective engines. How anachronistic can that be in a well-established culture of “self-service” pumps?
      Oh, wait, maybe they do understand, given they seem to need only our votes, not even our money. Maybe we are simply foolish in wearing our cute little caps and striped coveralls while standing in little pools of gasoline and old oil drippings every few years.

      Those who truly detest fossil fuels should finally admit the DNC has been fueling directly at their “Blue Planet” refineries and cracking plants for years, as has the RNC been pulling into its “Standard Oil of Conservatism” refineries.

      So much for “grass roots.”

    • Submitted by Solly Johnson on 12/02/2016 - 07:25 pm.

      Age

      Ray, I am over 70 years of age, as I think you are. Our generation, growing up in the Cold War period, has fears of socialism that younger people do not. In surveys, young people view socialism better than capitalism, so perhaps there will be some Scandinavian style changes in this nation after we are gone.

  2. Submitted by Steve Titterud on 11/30/2016 - 10:26 am.

    The author forgot to mention the Democrats’ one charm:

    Their arrogance. It is boundless. Without any restraint, they ridiculed, excoriated, and villified anyone who dared even entertain a thought of not voting for Clinton.

    This was true whether or not you supported Trump or a third party candidate, or even if you intended not to cast a presidential vote.

    If you weren’t going to vote for Clinton, you were an idiot and worse, quite unlike the vastly superior Clinton supporters, who knew your best interests better than you. It was really too bad that people such as you had the right to vote, being so stupid and all !!

    The Democrats were led in this effort by Clinton herself, as she invited her followers to follow suit as she ridiculed the “irredeemable” and “deplorable” opposition – some tens of millions of Americans.

    The result was that millions tuned out and simply stopped listening to the Democratic machine. They became unreachable, as they were given no respect or understanding whatsoever.

    It’s the behavior of Clinton’s supporters that put Trump in the White House.

    • Submitted by Roy Everson on 11/30/2016 - 10:57 am.

      That’ll teach ’em

      So, people who felt personally insulted were so hurt they opted for the candidate who was insulting (read threatening) entire voting blocs based on their race, religion or gender? Not a very mature way to make a decision. Oops, another insult.

      • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 11/30/2016 - 11:06 am.

        No – yet more arrogance, as usual.

        It’s obvious that you know what’s best for those who didn’t vote for Clinton.

        Gee, I wonder why she lost ??

        • Submitted by Matt Haas on 11/30/2016 - 11:29 am.

          So the plan is?

          Further marginalize oursleves and our interests by shunning the only vehicle with the standing to move them forward. That sounds smart. Maybe we can go protest on the street corner some more, that seems to be working well…

          • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 11/30/2016 - 12:16 pm.

            Assuming your “only vehicle” = the Democratic party,

            …you could possibly throw out the leaders who force-marched all its members down a ruinous path, examples of which would be things like “It’s Hillary’s Turn!!” or the consistent tactic of “let’s change the subject” when any bad news came out, or the strategy I’ve outlined above – “let’s ridicule anyone who disagrees with us”.

            Oops !! I forgot that this won’t be possible without the cooperation of those who led you into the inferno through their arrogance.

            So I have no plan, although your party HAS done good things in the past, and I figure it probably will again, but maybe not with its current cast and crew.

            • Submitted by Matt Haas on 11/30/2016 - 12:57 pm.

              Arrogance

              Is a proper term, aimed at an incorrect target. The real arrogance is possessed by those liberals who beileve that all that is needed for victory is simple explanation of a bulleted list of policy positions, that their truth is so self evident as to not require further explanation, persuasion, or revision. Those who detest “politics as usual” while still expecting to prevail in contests played under those rules. Here is the plan, understand that politics is, and has always been, about one topic, power. Not flowery promises of utopian outcomes, not careful dissertation of carefully researched policy positions. To gain power we must cajole, convince, connive, conspire and unite every single soul we can muster to our side, by any means necessary. Pet issues must be set aside until the ultimate goal, the necessary power to actually enact our “wonderful” ideas is reached. This understanding is what enables the right to ride herd over it varied interests, and what has allowed them to dominate us. Liberals will be lost in the wilderness until we understand that right, wrong, truthful, or lies no longer hold any bearing when it comes to accumulating the power needed to bring our vision to reality. Only one does, victory. Rehash the election all you like, Bernie suffers the same affliction, as do most of the “grassroots” activists I’ve come across. The game has changed and we haven’t bothered to take the field.

              • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 11/30/2016 - 04:24 pm.

                The Clintons Changed the Game in the name of Power

                Bill Clinton came to power as the embodiment of “Third Way,” “New Democrats” who’s ‘realisation’ was that Democrats would never get anywhere by caring about poor people. He led the charge to make the party more ‘business friendly’ and kept pushing the neoliberal deregulation. Hillary was a continuation of this ‘pragmatic’ view of politics. How is that working for you? You can only sell out your constituencies to the 1% so many times before they realize that you have abandoned them. That is why every election seems to be a ‘change’ election. Propping up a party that is screwing over its voters is not helping anyone.

                We have been on this failed economic model since the Reagan revolution because the 1% made being an Economist the only job where it is impossible to fail down. The handful of economists that predicted the 2008 crash overwhelmingly backed Sanders but they have been shut out of power and influence by the idiots who created the mess in the first place. It is so shockingly obvious that it is amazing no one notices.

                Laissez Faire -> Gilded Age -> Economic Collapse -> Fascism -> Egalitarianism.

                Reagan and Thatcher will go down as the two worst world leaders ever for putting us back onto Laissez Faire. Last time it took Hitler and FDR to get us to be an egalitarian society, caring about the working class. Obama will not be remembered kindly either for failing to make the massive changes warranted by the great recession.

              • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 08:53 am.

                Here’s your problem Mr. Haas…

                The “flowery” dreamers aren’t the ones who supporter Bernie, the “flowery dreamers” were the one’s who supported Hillary. The idea that Hillary Clinton was “electable” was about realistic as a unicorn. Perhaps you noticed- Clinton lost.

                You want to talk about “power”, fine, that’s about winning elections, and you don’t win elections with crappy candidates like HRC.

                Democrats don’t get fail on such a massive and unprecedented scale against a train like Donald Trump and then pontificate about the political “reality” and power… I’m sorry but it just doesn’t work that way.

                The arrogance here was the complacent liberals who preferred to sit in their comfort zone of “incrementalism” and faux realism rather than support an actual liberal candidate. The arrogance was deciding it was Hillary’s turn and assuming people would vote for a crappy candidate they didn’t like and didn’t trust just because… well just because. The arrogance was deciding that a popular candidate with a compelling agenda was a loser.

                It is you sir who are misdirecting the charge arrogance.

                • Submitted by Matt Haas on 12/01/2016 - 11:26 am.

                  An explanation please

                  You’ve made very plain your disdain for Clinton as a candidate, that she couldn’t win, was weak, and incremental etc… Is there going to come a point when you acknowledge that despite all this Bernie’s campaign couldn’t beat her? As you know, I caucused for Bernie, supported him right up until it no longer made sense, agree with all he stands for. He’s a TERRIBLE politician. A LOUSY campaigner. Trifling questions about gun control threw his campaign off for weeks. He waited too long to attack Clinton and when he did, he was ham fisted, repetitive and uninteresting. He never found a way to connect with the minority vote. I get that you’re convinced he’d have beaten Trump, but at this point its arm chair revisionism. Let me guess your answer will be the malefeasnace of the DNC, so ok fine, are we to assume that after being unable to overcome that, a Bernie general campaign would be somehow equipped to overcome the much greater and far reaching malfeasance of the Trump candicacy? I get that no one wants blame, but to pretend there isn’t plenty to go around is silly. We’ve been telling ourselves about the “revolutionary power of progressives” for what 8 years now, still no results as far as I can tell. Truth isnt enough, we need to learn how to sell it.

                  • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 11:55 am.

                    8 years?

                    Dude, progressives have been around for a couple hundred years. American progressives like myself have been speaking truth to power for over a century, you think this started 8 years ago?

                    Sell it? Sure but sell it to whom? The problem progressives have always faced is complacent liberals sitting in various elite comfort zones. We have no trouble selling progressive truth to ordinary people, the problem is elite liberals who control the democratic party. It’s not about selling progressive truth, Medicare for All sells itself, the majority of Americans want it and they haven’t even seen the proposal. Living wages, free college, racial, gender, and sexual equality… all sold. But where are the democratic candidates who passionately fight for any of these popular agendas? Instead they scale them back and tell us such agendas are the stuff of unicorns.

                    This stuff sells itself, that’s why the elite fights soooo hard to keep it off the table in the first place.

                    As for Sanders, the came out of nowhere as a socialist with no money and won 48% of the primary vote. If THAT’S being a terrible candidate and lousy campaigner you weren’t paying attention to Clinton. Sander’s didn’t lose, he just failed to overcome elite party resistance, and that’s not a problem he would have faced in the general election as the nominated candidate.

                    • Submitted by Matt Haas on 12/01/2016 - 12:23 pm.

                      NO!

                      You just made my point, thank you. THIS STUFF DOES NOT SELL ITSELF! If it did, we wouldn’t be having this conversation as your hundred’s of years of progressives would have accomplished it by now. You can say all you like about how the American people are REALLY for this and that, but until they actually vote to do so, you’ve failed. You can rail on and on about the failings of the people you believe should just see the light and do what you want, but until WE progressives convince them to do so, we’ve failed. The burden is on US, NOT THEM. This is the arrogance I was referring to, that somehow all we must do is explain oursleves properly,(or put forth a candidate we believe everyone should be over the moon for) and everyone should magically fall in line. Except of course when they don’t when it becomes a problem of how timid, irrational, stupid, or uninformed these people are. C’mon Paul, you’re smarter than this.

                      As for Bernie’s campaign, now you’re just moving the goalposts. Either he can win or he can’t, whatever obstacles need be overcome. To suggest that DNC resistance was somehow more challenging than the full throated roar of the Trump horde is again, revisionism. I don’t accept the notion of much cross-pollination between Bernie and Trump backers, and if there was, it was from folks with very little core Bernie support to begin with. He was a bad campaigner in that he couldn’t defeat Clinton for all her flaws. A Clinton who was most recently defeated by someone who was also a relative unknown quantity to a great many people. He was and is a very good campaigner, that’s MY goalpost.

                    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 01:42 pm.

                      You’re not paying attention

                      Obviously the burden is on progressives, its our agenda. The point your missing is we can sell our agenda all we want, but if democrats refuse to nominate candidates that will write and introduce the legislation no one ever gets a chance to vote on it. The focus then is on complacent liberals who are invested in the status quo, we either need to jar them out of complacency or replace them with progressives.

                      You have to remember it’s not just a competition of ideas on a level playing field, powerful interests are invested in suppressing the progressive agenda. Selling the agenda to voters is the easy part, it’s getting the agenda in front of voters on a ballot that’s the sticking point.

                      For decades the debate in the progressive community has been whether or not to pursue this by trying to reform the democratic party, or build a third party, maybe something like the Green party. The thing that was so surprising about Sanders is he made a surprisingly successful move at capturing the democratic party, something most progressives had written off when the Clinton’s for the DLC back in the 80s.

                      As for Bernie, it’s simple, if you thought Clinton would win, you were wrong and you have to stop pretending you know how Americans will or would have voted. If you didn’t think Clinton would win, you were right. Hillary won the democratic primary, she lost the general election, so pretending that her primary performance somehow made her a stronger candidate than Sanders just doesn’t track logically. She got the majority of democratic votes, so what? You can’t win nation wide general elections with democrats because they’re not a nation wide majority. Independents are now the largest single voting block. Sanders would have gotten just as many and more democrat votes (his campaign would have energized voters and increased turnout, (Clinton depressed turnout by being one two deeply unpopular and distrusted candidates.). In addition to all Clinton’s votes, Sanders would have gotten independents. This isn’t a theory, we know this because Sanders always polled more successfully by larger margins against Trump than Hillary ever did. In a head to head match for independent votes in New Hampshire Sander won hands down. We also know that Clinton democrats always said they’d vote for the nominee, and they would have. Claiming that Sanders was a weak candidate is revisionism that ignores the fact that Clinton lost the election because democrats chose their weakest candidate. You can put a strong candidate in front of democrats but you can’t make them nominate them, we’ve seen this many many times before.

                    • Submitted by Matt Haas on 12/01/2016 - 07:34 pm.

                      To recap

                      Sanders wins because polls is an argument that expired November 8th. But we aren’t going to agree, which is fine. To get back to the first point, you are finally getting somewhere. Count me firmly in the first camp, as there will never be a viable third party movement in this country under current constitutional precedent (mainly regarding funds). To wrap it back even further, that means the argument made by the author is the most ludicrous example of the arrogance I’ve mentioned. There is no other vehicle for progressivism, barring some bizarro reversal of the GOP, so the Democrats are what you’ve got. You can continue to use the excuse that “the elites” are out to get us (the exact argument made by one unnaturally hued aspiring dictator btw) but ultimately the only choice is persuasion at the voter level enough to overcome the “entrenched interests” you mention. It will be dirty, it will be difficult, and it may require actions that push the moral and ethical boundaries of progressives. It will require actual politicking, not a list of lofty ideals and pipe dream propositions. I question whether some have the stomach for it, or like our author here will simply cut and run when their personal issues recieve short shrift in the interest of attaining the overall goal.

                    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/02/2016 - 09:45 am.

                      It will require a candidate like Sanders

                      To recap, Clinton was not a progressive candidate, even if she’d won it wouldn’t have been a progressive victory. The fact that democrats put their weakest candidate on the ballot cannot “prove” that Sanders would have lost the general election, or was a weaker candidate in the general election, that’s just circular reasoning. Colossal democrat fails don’t dictate political possibilities. People are and have been fighting and scrapping for decades, this isn’t your insight. Finally, if you want to be progressive, you fight and scrap to get progressive candidates the ballot. If you don’t think progressive are electable or can or would win elections… you’re simply not progressive and you should stop pretending to so.

                    • Submitted by Matt Haas on 12/02/2016 - 06:32 pm.

                      Perhaps

                      If such candidates could show the ability to do so, outside of limited geographic areas, or without the influence of a popular presidential candidate’s coat tails, your argument might hold more weight. Who was the last progressive presidential pick, Mondale? Or is he still not pure enough? I wonder sometimes if folks like LBJ and FDR would pass muster these days given the warts they carried. Look, I think everyone here understands your argument by now, but if you’re gonna go down the lines of litmus tests and creating some facsimile of the Tea party of the left, you’re right, you can count me out, I like to win, and that’s a fool’s errand.

                    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/03/2016 - 09:21 am.

                      Litmus test?

                      We’re not talking about litmus tests, progressive liberalism is a real thing with a real and clearly defined agenda. You either believe in that agenda or you don’t but you don’t get to block the progressive agenda as Clinton has done for decades, and then call yourself a progressive. She may as well call herself a communist. The entire Clinton (Bill and Hillary) ideology i.e. neo-liberalism and the “third way” is an was based on rejecting progressive policies and agendas, that’s an historical fact.

                      As for fools and their errands again, you don’t get lose to Trump and then lecture to others about reality. You get to lose to the most beatable candidate the republican party has ever produced and pretend to tell progressives how to win… clearly you (not you personally, I’m speaking in more general terms about complacent liberals) don’t know how to win, if you did a democrat would president elect right now.

                      And by the way yes, FDR does quality as a progressive. If you think there’s any resemblance between the Clinton’s and FDR I refer you to Bill Clinton who identified the democratic party he’d help “transform” as Eisenhower Republicans, in other words, moderate republicans- not progressive.

                    • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 12/04/2016 - 09:39 am.

                      That “third way” ??

                      Supposedly, Dick Morris taught the Clintons the art of “triangulation”. But before he took on this role, he dropped all his Republican clients !!

                      This political practice involves adopting parts of the political ideology of both ends of the political spectrum. This makes your point that Clinton is no progressive – and never was – even more clear. It also clarifies that she (and Bill, too) were liberal only in part – the other part being actually conservative, in terms of their politics.

                      This whole dynamic of triangulation is near the root of Hilary’s credibility problem: it makes it impossible to tell, or even admit, the whole truth at any one point in time. So she ends up looking like a liar at ALL times.

                    • Submitted by Cathy Erickson on 12/05/2016 - 11:12 am.

                      But isn’t this what…

                      many Americans wanted? A happy medium between the far left and far right?

                      Had Clinton explained her “triangulation” rather than representing a “more left” (but not left enough for many) platform would she had received more support from those who didn’t want to vote for Trump? (I need to learn more about this “third way”)

                      PS…I really enjoyed reading all of the comments in this thread!! Matt, Paul, Steve, author Phil, and others – your insights made me ponder and realize how a message can be viewed so differently by different sets of eyes and beliefs.

                    • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 12/05/2016 - 05:55 pm.

                      You’re on to something – it seems this IS what many Americans…

                      …want, but it was never presented in that way, because it was never a good faith effort to heal divisions, bridge gaps, etc. Rather, it was bad faith manipulation & conniving chicanery which appeared to be her motivation. People are outraged by Trump’s obvious inability to deliver on his promises, but Clinton was just as bad.

                      Clinton always pandered to whomever she addressed, virtually always stressing only one side of her political duplicity – the one she thought would be welcome to her current audience. That’s why she had to attempt to hide the transcripts of her numerous speeches at $250k a pop to centers of capital – her warm embrace of these folks and sympathy for their position would contradict her other stated public views.

                      This fit right in with her “public position” vs “private position” tactic. The “public position” is for all the schlubs (voters) like you and me. The “private position” is for donors and her real friends.

                      Now these characteristics can be found to some degree in all politicians, but both Clintons seem to have raised the art of hypocrisy and duplicity to new heights !!

                      If she had any respect for those who were not her natural followers, she most certainly could have swayed them, especially since so many decided late. But she and her whole campaign were so busy RIDICULING anyone with a different view – not only showing them NO compassion, NO understanding, NO sympathy – but going much further in merciliessly villifying them as idiots, neanderthals, racists, etc rather than courting them by expressing compassion, understanding, sympathy. I don’t have any doubt that this is what cost them the election in its last hours.

        • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 12/01/2016 - 10:57 am.

          Evidently:

          The folks that voted for Build the wall, etc. etc. etc. know what is best for those of us that didn’t? Not arrogance or ignorance?
          PS: Lost because of the way the system works, not because of popular vote.
          PSS: Know T voters that made the decision in Jan. and never listened to a single debate, republican, democrat or combined. Guess that is being really informed about the facts, and folks that were/are informed are “Arrogant?” .

  3. Submitted by Brian Simon on 11/30/2016 - 11:12 am.

    Pretty much

    The Dems certainly missed the opportunity to turn populist during the Obama admin. One would think the Sanders & Trump phenomena would wake them up; but perhaps not. I expect the Trump admin will give Dems one more chance to figure it out. Though, frankly, I am not so willing to spite my face that I’ll vote for republicans / remove my nose.

  4. Submitted by Adam Miller on 11/30/2016 - 11:19 am.

    Okay

    You’ll vote for the party that not only stands directly against the things you want, but will also put in place policies that move in the opposite direction. Okay. Sounds smart.

  5. Submitted by Frank Phelan on 11/30/2016 - 12:20 pm.

    The Abridged Version

    The corporate Democrats need to shed the Gucci loafers in favor of the Red Wing work boots that are waaaay in the back of the closet.

    Did you see a tone deaf John Kerry admonishing us on trade agreements yesterday? Any questions why he couldn’t even beat W in 2004? Rick Nolan was one of the few MN DFL politicians who said he’d vote for Bernie at the DNC, and he won what was always expected to be a close race where the major issue may well have been TPP. Our two US senators should take note.

    I’d like it if anyone can tell me what the DFL House and Senate caucuses campaigned on this fall. People are anxious about their declining incomes, and I heard nary a peep about having raised the minimum wage, or what out state highways and bridges would receive funding if they were in the majority.

    • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 11/30/2016 - 12:46 pm.

      Dingdingding !! We’ve got a winner here !!

      Infrastructure spending could win the next election for its champions. Even wasteful infrastructure spending produces jobs.

      However, in recent years, the only time I can recall Democrats chanting “jobs, jobs, jobs” was when they wanted to ram through a luxurious sports palace on public monies – in which, I read recently, they enjoy such a very fine seating at no cost, or little cost – but who’s counting ??

      • Submitted by Matt Haas on 11/30/2016 - 04:11 pm.

        Hardly

        We already know the script for this. “party X is just pandering to their special interest Y with jobs for votes” or “party x doesn’t care about the voters of region Y, all the spending is going to
        region Z” or as you so perfectly illustrated above, “party X’s infrastructure spending is a boondoggle I don’t agree with, vote for party Y” Infrastructure spending is certainly needed, but don’t count on it as a panacea to ail the political woes of liberals.

  6. Submitted by Pat Terry on 11/30/2016 - 02:23 pm.

    Fake news

    This piece is proof it isn’t just conservatives and Trump supporters that fall for fake news. Lots of assumptions and generalizations here, not a lot of facts.

    • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 11/30/2016 - 04:31 pm.

      It’s not fake.

      Point out any ‘errors’ or ‘assumptions’ and I will gladly supply you with more facts to elaborate the point. You could also click through the links that are in the story if those happen to be one of the points you felt I didn’t explain to your liking.

      • Submitted by Pat Terry on 11/30/2016 - 07:23 pm.

        Where do I start?

        I did read your links, and the problem isn’t so much the articles themselves, but your interpretation. That New York Times piece doesn’t support your position at all. It’s your writing generally which reflects all the fake news out there.

        You go off track right away when you get to the oft-repeated claim that Minnesota’s elected officials subverted the will of the people by not supporting Sanders. Even if there was any requirement to do that – Sanders won a caucus – a process that was so unfair and undemocratic that the legislature promptly eliminated presidential caucuses.

        Sanders and Clinton voted together 93 percent of the time. And some of the differences are where Clinton was more liberal, such as Sanders breaking with other Vermont Democrats and selling out to the gun lobby. The idea that the Clintons are the root of all evil has no basis in reality, as is the idea that Sanders is as pure as the driven snow. The message (and fake news) coming from the hard left isn’t that much different from what’s coming from Breitbart.

        Clinton was not a great candidate. And I get the criticism from the left. But all my Sanders-primary voting friends understood what was at stake – gay rights, voting rights, the fate of immigrants and Muslims, the millions whose lives depend on the ACA – and voted for Clinton. It’s sad to me to see someone who gets so worked up by the anti-Clinton vitriol that you could overlook these people. It makes me wonder if you were even a Democrat in the first place.

        • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 12/01/2016 - 03:57 am.

          More info

          Yeah, the Times piece isn’t exactly what I wanted but I figured that since this wasn’t an academic paper it might be off putting to link to research papers.

          https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2814100

          There are so few news outlets that have the slightest clue what is going on with the economy because they are all partisan and looking to apologize for one side or the other or cover their own behind. So when you have bipartisan screw ups like GLBA and CFMA that all the economic press is on record praising when they passed there is crickets from the big papers.

          The caucus is what we have had for years. It may not be the best method but it gives an indication of intensity of support as well as numbers. The intensity was never with Clinton. The powers that be in every shape in form were. No, local DFLers were not bound, but they knew what they were risking by abandoning the people that put them in office.

          Sanders and Clinton voted together 93% of the time… on naming post offices. There is so much difference between them on absolutely every issue except Identity politics that it is mind blowing that pathetic statistic got thrown around by people that should know better. They were miles apart on War, Healthcare, Taxes, and The Environment just to name a few. On all of those Clinton’s message was we are doing great, and we just need some minor tweaking so we can get some women and people of color on the boards of our corporate overlords.

          I didn’t overlook anything, I whole hardly opposed Clinton at every turn because she was promising nuclear war with Russia because she really wanted Al Qaeda aligned groups to take over Syria. The Free Syrian Army has long since disappeared and the literally dozen or so moderate rebels in Aleppo are only holding off Assad and ISIS by partnering with Al Nusra Front, an Al Qaeda off shoot. The generals all agree that a no fly zone would mean war with Russia, who has let it be known that since they are a much smaller country and have a much smaller army that any act of war from the US would be responded to with a tactical nuclear strike. Which is why all the neocons hated Trump and supported Clinton. Trump may be horrible but at least he isn’t advocating nuclear holocaust for no reason.
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fmE9Jj-rEVs
          http://www.alternet.org/world/syrias-going-get-even-worse-if-us-and-other-powers-dont-start-negotiating
          http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-w-kearn/deterring-russia-assessin_b_9841844.html

          “gay rights, voting rights, the fate of immigrants and Muslims, the millions whose lives depend on the ACA” All things the Democratic party was willing to risk to keep their Wall Street gravy train going. If you care about any of those issues you should be insisting that the party run the candidate who successfully appealed to voters not in those protected subgroups, you know building a coalition with economically marginalized white working class voters. The New Deal coalition. Rather than just assuming that they will come out and vote for the candidate who calls them deplorable to ward off someone who the media says is a new breed of evil because he says the kind of things they are subjected to on a daily basis.

          Until this election I’ve voted almost entirely for Democrats and never for a Republican. No more. If the Democrats can’t get back to bread and butter economic issues they will not be a viable party no matter how much hand waving about marginalized groups they do.

  7. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 11/30/2016 - 02:38 pm.

    A big ho-hum from the younger demographic.

    Not so much into the Democratic party or democracy.

    Perhaps the real issue is that the younger generations do not really care that much about the form of government they live under.

    Only about 30% of people born in the 1980’s in the US say it is “essential” to live in a democracy (compared to 75% of the geezers who say it is “essential”).

    And,

    “Support for autocratic alternatives is rising, too. Drawing on data from the European and World Values Surveys, the researchers found that the share of Americans who say that army rule would be a “good” or “very good” thing had risen to 1 in 6 in 2014, compared with 1 in 16 in 1995.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/29/world/americas/western-liberal-democracy.html?_r=1

  8. Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 11/30/2016 - 02:53 pm.

    Hey! Someone has to say this:

    Democrats who voted for Hillary Clinton are not to blame for the election of the first fascist in American presidential history! Neither is the Democratic party. Hillary Clinton won more than 2.5 million more votes than Trump did, meaning that MOST AMERICANS who voted, voted for her. (She had almost 65 million votes to Trump’s 62 million, a gap of about 1.7% in Clinton’s favor. That matched the pre-election polls, incidentally.)

    Of course, half of eligible American voters didn’t bother to vote. They are the core of our problem, and of whatever trouble Trump gets our country into.

    Hillary Clinton had deeply-researched policy strategies for the good of the people in her pocket, but we all heard nothing but “email scandal” (there’s nothing to it!). Bernie folks helped to keep the anti-Clinton garbage alive in the campaign, so Clinton’s policy–superior in the depth of her knowledge of how to improve our lives–remained invisible, and couldn’t be discussed. We had no policy discussion because only Clinton was trying to discuss it.

    I blame any and all Sanders supporters who voted for anyone but Clinton, or who refused to vote at all and sulked in a corner, for Trump’s election. For Sanders people to contribute to Trump’s election, ignoring all the Clinton issues Sanders had espoused, was inconscionable. I will not forgive them, nor will I blame the Democratic party for backing a clearly brilliant and qualified woman for President.

    Now we have a president-elect who is winging it, and tweeting madly in the middle of the night in ways that contradict our laws and Constitution. Perhaps only those of us who have lived under a right-wing fascist dictator abroad, as I have, have a sense of what is in store for America, for the first time in our history.

    • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 11/30/2016 - 05:01 pm.

      Democrats are Entirely to Blame

      You are kidding yourself if you think Clinton was honestly going to try for even half of the policies in her detailed proposals that she refused to talk about ever. Her campaign was one message; Trump is a big scary racist misogynist.

      She is so qualified? How exactly? What has she done besides get us in tons of unnecessary Military engagements. For every one good thing that woman has accomplished I can name 5 things she has done that are down right horrible.

      You know what creates fascism? A lack of decent paying jobs and voters seeing no way of improving their lives. All things we have every president since Reagan to thank for, especially Bill Clinton.

      For further debunking of all your ridiculous democrats did nothing wrong claims see the multipart piece here:

      http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/11/two-more-myths-about-clintons-defeat-in-election-2016-debunked.html

    • Submitted by joe smith on 11/30/2016 - 05:53 pm.

      Trump just winged saving 1,000 jobs

      in Indiana. I know it is only a 1,000 jobs,average salary $50,000 plus, but Trump did something for those folks. Where was Obama? Snooty Josh Earnest made lite of Trump in his daily presser today, how sad that the Presidents spokesman doesn’t understand that to those 1,000 regular working class folks this is a huge day in their lives. If you want to know why Trump won, it wasn’t Bernie voters, it was the snobby attitude you can see daily by liberal elites. To the folks who take showers after work, those 1,000 jobs saved from going to Mexico is a win….. About time!!

      • Submitted by Pat Terry on 11/30/2016 - 07:33 pm.

        Winged

        He didn’t “wing” it. Indiana gave the company a massive subsidy package, and basically opened the door to the same to any company that threatens to leave.

        This is what happens when pretend that an incompetent businessman who squandered his inheritance has any idea what he’s doing. Trump is going to drive this country’s economy into the ground.

        • Submitted by Jim Million on 11/30/2016 - 11:28 pm.

          Pat (final comment)

          Sometimes you have made cogent comments of the alternate type
          Sometimes you have been rather extereme without foundational references
          In any case, you have privided rudimentary positioning
          I thank you for boldness in blatant comments
          I considered your hip-shot style of comment
          I decided to like your snap shots

          And I ask you only here and now
          to consider a new and more refined pistol
          to place your reasonable shots more on target.

          Post when you’ve pontificated. Keep cogent.

        • Submitted by joe smith on 12/01/2016 - 09:00 am.

          Pat, if you ever decided to move a company

          to another state or even move to another county in that state you would find that places who want those 1,000 jobs in their community give you incentives. Whether it be a break in property taxes, low interest loan or other financial help. In turn that community gets 1,000 folks buying houses (makes up for company property taxes), folks buying food, clothes, cars and stimulating their towns economy. It is called smart long term planning. Trump understands that. Many who have no business background look short term and suffer.

          As I stated the hubris of Josh Earnest (representing the White House) was sickening. To those 1,000 folks who are keeping their jobs it was a huge day. That shows the President-elect understands business. Where was Obama?

      • Submitted by Frank Phelan on 11/30/2016 - 08:30 pm.

        Solyndra

        So when Obama does it, it’s “picking winners and losers”, and “big government interfering with the magic of the marketplace”.

        When Trump does it it’s “saving jobs”.

        By this measure, Obama saved hundreds of thousands more jobs by “bailing out” the auto industry. But again, that was bad because, we, because!

        • Submitted by joe smith on 12/01/2016 - 10:32 am.

          Businessman vs community organizer.

          A businessman will give a company incentives over a period of years to keep a company from relocating (Trump gave Carrier 7 million over 10 years to stay in Indiana) Obama gave 500 million one time payment to help Solyndra. Which one makes more sense?

          • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/01/2016 - 10:42 am.

            Trump Gave Carrier Nothing!!!

            Unless he was appointed Dictator of Indiana and the mainstream media neglected to tell us about it, damn their biased eyes.

          • Submitted by Sean Olsen on 12/01/2016 - 11:43 am.

            Nope

            The Solyndra deal was not a one-time payment, it was a loan guarantee. Essentially it was a supersized SBA loan, where the government took on a major chunk of the risk to help a company get financing in the market.

            • Submitted by Joseph Skar on 12/01/2016 - 11:50 am.

              So

              How much was repaid?

              • Submitted by Sean Olsen on 12/01/2016 - 12:11 pm.

                The government has recouped $52 million on Solyndra so far via various mechanisms. The larger DoE loan program that Solyndra was a part of is running in the black and restarted in 2014 to loan money again to a new round of projects.

                • Submitted by Joseph Skar on 12/01/2016 - 12:38 pm.

                  So

                  Only a modest 450m loss.

                • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 12/01/2016 - 02:18 pm.

                  Depending on who is looking?

                  According to a Bloomberg article, Solyndra was one piece of a multi investment program, the Dept. of Energy made. The program overall is ~ $5-6 Bil ahead, of course the detractors like “T” folks don’t want to admit that the Government really does, about to change, have some smart people. Like a basket of mortgages, there is some risk that not all will bat 100%.

          • Submitted by Joseph Skar on 12/01/2016 - 11:57 am.

            Louisiana Pacific

            For some local perspective, LP is looking at 66m in public incentives for the Cook site. Makes the Carrier deal look pretty reasonable.

            http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/business/4147330-louisiana-pacific-now-eyeing-cook-site-new-siding-plant

      • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 12/01/2016 - 08:42 am.

        State subsidies from Indiana (which Pence currently has the role of governor).

        A “I’ll wash your back, if you wash mine” promise or threat from the president-in-waiting because the parent company of Carrier is a big federal contractor.

        We’re being told, “Of course this is how the republic should be run”, “This is how taxpayer money should be spent.”

        Crony capitalism–where who you know is more important than anything else.

        • Submitted by joe smith on 12/01/2016 - 09:27 am.

          Crony capitalism vs good policy.

          Crony capitalism is GE getting carve outs in a complicated 35% business tax law to not pay taxes, good policy is 15% business tax no carve outs, no special exceptions for lobbyists and special interest (a Bush Obama specialty) to exploit. Lower the rate, eliminate exceptions and there is no incentive to throw at shady politicians to create crony capitalism, that is called “draining the swamp”.

          It is rich to hear Obama backers complain about crony capitalism when over the last 8 years the 1% has done better than ever living off crony capitalism!! Truly rich.

      • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/01/2016 - 10:41 am.

        “Where Was Obama?”

        Didn’t the Evil One receive a great deal of criticism for the auto industry bailout?

        Perhaps he was reflecting that, as President of the United States, he has no power to dictate that the State of Indiana make ruinous tax concessions for one company. He has as much authority in this area as, say, a President-elect, but is too circumspect to take credit for something outside his power.

        But snooty, so bad.

        • Submitted by joe smith on 12/01/2016 - 01:59 pm.

          RB, are you equating billions in an auto bail out

          to 7M in incentives to save 1,000 jobs that pay $50,000 a year ? If you do the math on those employees paying 15% in Fed taxes, you recoup the money in year 1. Remember this is paid over 10 years. Do the math on a 10 year tax benefit by keeping jobs here. Auto bail out was a union pay back! They have chapter 11 laws to allow companies to re-organize without billions of tax dollars.

          • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/01/2016 - 04:25 pm.

            Equating

            The auto industry bailout directly saved 1.5 million jobs in the U.S. It also preserved around $105 billion in tax collections. Most of the federal money for the bailout was repaid ahead of schedule.

            If I do the math on those employees paying 15% in Fed taxes, I see no recoupment. The tax incentives are at the state level. It’s still a gain for Carrier, and as a token of its gratitude, Carrier still plans to move 1300 jobs from Indiana to Mexico.

            “Auto bail out was a union pay back!” And the Carrier incentives are not a political favor to anyone? Nah, that would never happen.

            • Submitted by joe smith on 12/01/2016 - 08:45 pm.

              The bottom line is the auto

              industry was not going to shut down and go away. That is flat out wrong! They needed to reorganize yes but not with tax payer billions. I am all for giving incentives to help companies stay in a state (like Carrier) but to give a company tax payer money because they built bad products and invested money in areas outside their strengths (2of the Big 3) is wrong. Just like bailing out Wall Street was wrong. The president of Carrier said he wished he had gotten this phone call 2 years ago he wouldn’t have begun the process of leaving America. They invested 10’s of millions in this move to Mexico and will move some jobs….. Once again where was Obama?

              • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/02/2016 - 09:04 am.

                The bottom line is the auto bailout is regarded as Obama’s doing (even though it started under President Bush), and is ipso facto bad. Or perhaps your understanding of federalism is so poor you think the President of the United States can force states to make tax concessions to businesses?

                If the auto industry and Wall Street had not been bailed out, we would have lost more than 1,000 jobs.

    • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 12/01/2016 - 07:38 am.

      A note about that popular vote lead by Clinton

      Yes, Clinton is ahead by approx. 2.5 million votes, but she won California by about 4 million, so except for California, Trump wins the popular vote in the entire remainder of the country by about 1.5 million.

      California was going to be a Democratic state no matter what anyone did. That’s why Trump didn’t waste any resources there. Same for Clinton, whose trips to California were primarily fundraisers, naturally.

      She picked up $19 million there in 72 hours late in August:

      http://www.cnn.com/2016/08/25/politics/hillary-clinton-fundraising-california/

      Californians votes should count, too – but it’s an outlier compared with the rest of the country as a whole, albeit a massive outlier.

      • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/01/2016 - 01:42 pm.

        Your Point?

        If we’re looking at the overall popular vote nationwide, it doesn’t matter how the vote is divided by state. The fact remains that 2.5 million + American voters preferred Hillary Clinton to Donald Trump.

        State-by-state allocations of votes matters only for purposes of the Electoral College and kvetching about coastal elites.

        • Submitted by Steve Titterud on 12/01/2016 - 04:18 pm.

          My point is that Clinton won the popular vote in California,…

          …and Trump won the popular vote in the rest of the country.

          No further point. It’s just an innocent little fact, that’s all. Why be so upset??

          • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/02/2016 - 10:04 am.

            Who’s Upset?

            The innocent big fact is that Clinton won the popular vote in 20 states and the District of Columbia. It was more than just those evil Hollywood people and those sinful you-know-whats in San Francisco.

    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 09:28 am.

      Democrats ARE to blame

      Trump was a train wreck that any decent popular candidate would have defeated handily. We’re not going to pretend that Trump won because he was just THAT good.

      Democrats ARE to blame for selecting Clinton. Democrats were warned, they had options, they made their choice, and they own these results.

  9. Submitted by Kevin Bradley on 11/30/2016 - 03:00 pm.

    Congrats

    How refreshing to hear a Democrat admit that it was Clinton’s policies that led directly to the housing crisis and great recession. And congrats on discovering that the problem isn’t whether you’re GOP or Dem, rather it’s whether you’re part of the two-party duopoly that is controlled by career politicians who are controlled by Wall Street. Your next logical move is to embrace libertarianism. You’re well on your way.

    • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 11/30/2016 - 05:10 pm.

      Never Libertarian

      Abandoning solid Keynesian full employment targeting in the name of Neoliberalism (Libertarian lite) is what got us into the mess in the first place. There is no such thing as a free market. Markets need rules to function and we have given up any idea that it shouldn’t be the people who have all the money making the rules. All of this was predicted by Kalecki back in 1943. Skip section 1 if you aren’t an econ nerd.

      economie.politique.free.fr/liens/Kalecki_1943.pdf

  10. Submitted by David Mindeman on 11/30/2016 - 09:53 pm.

    Sorry you have had it…

    Guess you will have to find another place in a two party system to grouse about. You know, Democrats as a whole do not like big money politics, but if you want the Dems to unilaterally disarm, then we can simply give the country to the Republicans forever. Unless Dems get elected to key power positions, we will be a minority party forever. And simply promoting your personal ideas of what the “people” want isn’t good enough. Because you know, not everybody thinks like you. And until you think in broader political terms, your ideals can continue to bask in that minority fringe that you think is way bigger than it is. I supported Hillary. I thought she was a better candidate, overall, than Bernie. I’m sure you disagree, but Bernie’s weaknesses were not exploited by anyone. The GOP didn’t bother and Hillary was trying to unify. But given all of that, if Bernie had come back and won the nomination, I would have supported him in a New York minute. Because I know and understand what is at stake in a two party system. Jill Stein, Bernie write ins, and not voting – live in hell.

    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 08:59 am.

      Unilaterally disarm?

      “Guess you will have to find another place in a two party system to grouse about. You know, Democrats as a whole do not like big money politics, but if you want the Dems to unilaterally disarm, then we can simply give the country to the Republicans forever”

      Again, democrats don’t get fail on such a massive and unprecedented scale against a train wreck like Trump and then pontificate about “reality”. You give republicans the country forever when you lose elections with crappy candidates, not when refuse take corporate money.

      Democrats disarmed themselves when they chose candidates like Clinton, not when they turn down corporate money.

      Sanders frequently out-raised Clinton with no PACs, and no big donors. He gave a solid model in the real world.

    • Submitted by Tom Anderson on 12/01/2016 - 06:53 pm.

      And yet

      “Democrats as a whole do not like big money politics”
      And yet they raised and spent more (especially the local races here in Minnesota) than the Republicans. The things we must do to benefit the rest of society…

  11. Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 11/30/2016 - 10:04 pm.

    I agree with Mr. Rovick

    Mr. Rovick nailed it this time (and I don’t often agree with him): younger generation doesn’t care what form of government they live under and that is why they like Socialism. We may debate the reason for this sad observation (in my mind, it is the leftist propaganda mixed with total lack of real life knowledge due to having it easy), but it just shows that moving too much to the left is a much greater danger than moving too much to the right despite Ms. Sullivan’s constant references to fascism.

    • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 12/01/2016 - 04:45 pm.

      You had it easy, not us

      You had the chance to go to college when states subsidized them. The cost of tuition has been on steady incline since the 80’s while the median income hasn’t budged.
      http://www.cbpp.org/research/state-budget-and-tax/funding-down-tuition-up

      You got to enter the workforce and have jobs available, which is key to your lifetime earnings. Entering the workforce at a time of high unemployment decreases your annual salary by 20% and that effect lasts for 20 years.
      http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2012/03/morsy.htm

      We are the first generation expected to be worse off than our parents and we have to deal with a war torn world with sea levels rising around 2 feet in our life time thanks to crony capitalism. If I read one more ‘Millennials are so lazy with their phones’ that ignores the ‘because boomers blew up the economy and saddled them with debt’ I think I will scream.

      • Submitted by Margaret Houlehan on 12/02/2016 - 08:14 pm.

        I agree with you. But I am tail end of Boomers.

        And I am about to have the Medicare and SS I have worked for 35 years for be vouchered and privatized by Paul” Ayn Rand” Ryan. All because some are angry that their high paying jobs were outsourced and automatized. And of course, Guns, Gawd, Gays, and Abortion.

  12. Submitted by Jon Kingstad on 11/30/2016 - 10:19 pm.

    Keeping the faith

    I’d had it with the Democratic Party in 1980 when I voted for John Anderson for President. I certainly had had it with President Jimmy Carter. As it turned out, my vote and the votes of those who voted for Anderson did not make any difference in Reagan’s victory over Carter in the 1980 popular vote or the Electoral College. Nor did we make any difference in the Reagan/Republican revolution that began that year as even many so-called Democrats signed off on the Reagan conservative policies that were implemented in the succeeding years. It was during the Reagan-Bush I years that Democrats abandoned the working class, and eventually brought to fore a “New Democrat”, Bill Clinton, who embraced those policies as a “new Democrat” sponsoring the kind of disastrous, anti-Democratic, conservative policies the author mentions above.

    I too supported Bernie Sanders for President with the hope of abandoning the Republicanization of the Democratic party and restoring the Party and the country to a path toward Democratic Socialism, building on its New Deal foundations. From my study of history, economics and law, I’m incredulous at the persistence of the belief of those on the right that an industrialized, now post-industrialized, economy as ours in the USA can be returned to some pre-1933 laissez faire, libertarian Shangrila. This is a pipe dream or perhaps “noble lie” which the wealthy 1% of Americans have nurtured to prevent any relapses to a political economy which shared the bounty of this great country more equably and sustained the greatest rise in living standards for more people than any other time or place in history.

    I’m only afraid that many of the 99% who continue to accept the false promises of the right will only come to their senses when they personally experience the brutal, Social Darwinian realities of the policies they voted for, such as another financial crisis as we did in 2006-2008. The President-elect has nominated one of the architects of that financial catastrophe as his Secretary of Treasury. He’s already talking about repealing the half-way reforms enacted to prevent a recurrence of that disaster (Dodd-Frank) just as Republicans are also dusting off their plans for “privatization” of Social Security. Just a coincidence, I’m sure.

    I’ve still had it with the Democratic Party too. But I’m keeping the faith with the Democratic Party. The Bible says: “Faith is hope in things unseen” which I don’t believe is necessarily limited to an afterlife. The Democratic Party still offers something to hope for in this life even to our children and grandchildren. The Republican Party and right wing politics offers nothing to hope for and will be lucky if they don’t deliver us into despair.

  13. Submitted by Joel Stegner on 12/01/2016 - 12:45 am.

    Losing is part of politics

    All Democrats are unhappy with the election results and there are a lot of reasons the election turned out the way it did. We need to learn and chsnge.

    Conservatives got equally mad at past losses. What did they do? Regrouped, tried a very clear approach (hate and fear), did a lot of dirty work at the local level (voter suppression and gerrymandering) and won big. If you work hard and smart, you can win big – although remember that Hillary won the popular vote, if we seemed to big elsewhere. They won by arguing she is as bad as Trump – a ridiculous idea and one that some progressives bought into. We can try to deflate bad ideas, but better to offer clever solutions with wide appeal.

    We can learn from them. Voters ask with is in it for them. Progressives were so busy representing their causes, they didn’t realize that hard working white high school grads who have traditionally been Democrats started to think that the party doesn’t care out them. Talk about disparities, but not realizing how not having a college degree is career limiting.

    It is sort of like the mythical Norwegian figures is was enough to tell his wife once that he loved her. We all want to be appreciated and when the con-man said he did, and we didn’t, people wanted to believe.

    So for the activist, take some time off and come to fight again another day, But please don’t just stay in your comfort zone. Rethink your issues and approaches. Progressives need to be symbols of the progress they represent. Being a static progressive – almost a contradiction. Leave Republicans to be the ones who are stuck in the mud. Be the change!

    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 09:11 am.

      No….

      “Progressives were so busy representing their causes, they didn’t realize that hard working white high school grads who have traditionally been Democrats started to think that the party doesn’t care out them. ”

      This is simply wrong. Yes, democrats turned their backs on these voters, but the democratic party isn’t particularly liberal let alone “progressive”.

      Progressives got it right, those white high school grads your talking about were Bernie’s base, that’s who you saw if you went to any of his rallies. Twas the democrats, not the progressives who got it wrong when they choose Clinton over Sanders. Clinton was NOT the candidate of choice for progressives.

      Progressive’s almost by definition aren’t the ones sitting in their comfort zones, that would be complacent liberals who thought we could celebrate our incrementalism and offer a “tweak” here and there to a country that was obviously in the mood for some radical change.

      Trump didn’t win, this was Clinton’s election to lose, and she lost. And she didn’t lose because she was trapped in some kind of progressive comfort zone… you have to be a progressive candidate in order for that to happen and she’s a moderate republican at best.

  14. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 09:24 am.

    Voting republican?

    The only nit I’ll pick with the author is the idea that it makes sense to vote for republicans until the democrats become a liberal party. That makes no sense and is flat our immoral.

    The idea of voting for Trump-like candidates is simply immoral regardless of rationale. You don’t have to vote for democrats but if your conscientious liberal or progressive you can’t vote FOR sexims, racism, violence, and oppression, just for starters.

    And before complacent liberals start their prattle about throwing votes away let’s just acknowledge that by it’s own logic, a “strategic” vote for any candidate that loses is a “wasted” vote. So a vote for Clinton ends up being no more valuable than a vote for Mickey Mouse because she didn’t win. You don’t waste votes by voting for candidates and agendas you believe in. You waste your vote when elect candidates that don’t represent the agendas you believe in, and betray your trust when they get into office. When democrats think they can win elections with candidates like that, they and no-one else own the results.

  15. Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 12/01/2016 - 10:53 am.

    But , it was push coming to shove time

    The time to organize and campaign for a third-party candidate, or for someone in a party who is running against other party members for a nomination, is not at the last minute, when you cast a vote–or not–between those who are actually running for President. That’s when Push Comes to Shove.

    You waste your vote if you don’t vote, or vote for a Green who can’t possibly win, or vote for a write-in who’s not even a legal candidate (you have to register a write-in candidate, so Mickey Mouse doesn’t count). You have to vote for the best of two major-party candidates, in our country. That was either Clinton, or Trump.

    Anyone who states or implies that Trump is even in the same category as Clinton, that he even has one-hundredth of her knowledge and preparation for the job, should see their shrink for a reality check. How could we risk having Trump win?

    As for the gigantic (unprecedented, I think) popular vote lead that Clinton has, whether it’s California’s vote total or not: you know who is really upset that He’s a Loser in the popular vote? Donald Trump!

    Trump really got steamed when he saw how many more Americans voted for Hillary Clinton than for him. He lost the election if we count all the votes cast, rather than Electoral College votes that prioritize Montanans over Californians or Floridians. He can’t stand losing, and in one of his mad tweets–they are mad, and people should start saying that when he goes over the edge, repeatedly–he made the lying accusation that “millions of votes” were illegal.

    Really? Are we to let him get away with that junk because Bernie didn’t win the Democratic nomination?

    Grow up. Voting is serious. America is in for a terrible ride because too many of us were irresponsible in voting, or not voting, in 2016.

    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 12:04 pm.

      Grow up?

      Donald Trump is our president elect. We don’t select presidents by popular vote. You don’t win presidential elections by winning the popular vote. This is not a new feature of our presidential elections. If you want to win elections you need a candidate that voters want to vote for. You don’t put a candidate that millions of people don’t want to vote for on the ballot and tell voters to grow up. You tried that… did it work?

      Push came to shove… Clinton lost. We told you she could lose and why, so let’s drop the pretense of adulthood here because adults don’t expect to win elections with crappy candidates.

    • Submitted by Margaret Houlehan on 12/02/2016 - 08:17 pm.

      Agree

      Constance.

  16. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 12:13 pm.

    By the way it’s not just this election

    Even when democrats win, they lose- look what’s happening to Obamacare. When you look at the defeats democrats have been facing over the last several decades you see that many if not most of them have been self inflicted.

    The decision to convert the democratic party into a moderate wing of the republican party simply put democrats and the liberal agenda in an impossible position. For decades now we’ve been told not by republicans, but by democrats that basic liberal principles, priorities, and agendas are unrealistic fantasies that American’s won’t support. They’ve been moving their candidates further and further to the right for decades despite several spectacular failures. If you compare the party of Clinton to the party of FDR you can see the contrast and it’s dramatic.

    What’s frustrating, and I’ve been watching this for my whole adult life (I’m 54), is when democrats produce spectacular fails like this and still try to pretend they’re the only voice of reason and political wisdom in town. I don’t know if it’s just and echo chamber or what but they just don’t realize how much credibility they’ve been losing with the American voter.

  17. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/01/2016 - 01:43 pm.

    One more time about third party votes

    Only because democrats always do this, they run dullard candidates and then blame someone else for their loss-

    No third party candidate won enough votes to swing this election, or any presidential election in the losers favor. Neither Gore nor Clinton lost because of third party voters, that’s an historical and mathematical fact.

    The argument that voters SHOULD for vote for candidates that they don’t like, trust, or support and that somehow that vote gives them a strategic advantage and gives their vote more “value” of some kind simply defies notion of democracy and will always struggle for legitimacy. You can sell it but you’ll lose elections because people just won’t buy it.

    Elections are about candidates who compete for votes, you can’t nullify that competition with political advice that tells people to vote against their own best interests for candidates they didn’t nominate or want on the ballot.

    • Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 12/01/2016 - 03:58 pm.

      The majority of American voters in the 2016 presidential election decided that it was in their best interest, and the country’s best interest, to vote for the qualified candidate, the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton.
      No one else on the ballot this year, or any possible write-in, was remotely qualified for the office.

      Accepting that fact of unique qualification is what I am calling being a grown-up about voting. No emotion about it.

      • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 12/02/2016 - 11:38 am.

        No they didn’t.

        The majority of Americans voted for someone other than Clinton. She did not come anywhere close to 50%. The fact that the people who hate her hate her for different reasons and splintered does not mean she had majority support.

      • Submitted by Margaret Houlehan on 12/02/2016 - 08:19 pm.

        Not to mention

        A number of prominent Republicans agreed HRC was the saner choice.

  18. Submitted by Jon Lord on 12/01/2016 - 04:54 pm.

    I’m pretty much convinced

    that the memory of most Americans is 8 years…at best. In effect 8 year olds have decided where this country is headed for at least the next 4 years.

    It’s going to be a huge shock to most of those I know who’ve voted for the new president-elect. They voted for the most bombastic with an empty message…for them. It’ll be great for the wealthiest, but they can’t be hurt one way or the other. The lower tiered wealthy can be hurt, the 5%’ers on down. The beginning of last century is a clue to how that can happen. Stocks and bonds aren’t protection enough.

    Move all the businesses to Mexico etc and that will harm most Americans. Give huge tax breaks to companies who’ll lower wages without a minimum wage law will harm the country. A pyramid with a ruined base won’t last long.

    Fighting over which candidate should have or shouldn’t have been chosen by the Democrats isn’t going to do us much good now. We should be thinking about which party can do the most good for the most people and why, now! We know what can happen to this country now! The best chance still resides with the Democrats. It resides will the party and a candidate that will honestly do the most good for most of the people. Not just a few.

    • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 12/01/2016 - 05:19 pm.

      Not a loyalist.

      That kind of blind party loyalty is what let the Democrats become moderate republicans and the republicans go off the deep end. If the democrats want votes they need to earn them by telling Wall Street to go to hell.

    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/02/2016 - 08:31 am.

      This is about the next election.

      The point here isn’t about arguing who would have won. The point is about accepting the fact that democrats choose their weakest candidate to face Trump thereby putting him in the White House, and it’s not the first time they’ve done that. 4 years from now they’ll do it again if they don’t accept responsibility and change their leadership. This isn’t about the last election, it’s about the next one.

  19. Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 12/01/2016 - 09:36 pm.

    A few questions/comments

    Mr. Uhrich, I am an immigrant who entered workforce in the early 90’s – not the best time so I did not have it easy. As for generational differences, MinnPost has it today: https://www.minnpost.com/other-nonprofit-media/2016/12/shocking-number-young-people-can-t-separate-fact-fiction-online.

    Mr. Udstrand, “Medicare for All sells itself, the majority of Americans want it and they haven’t even seen the proposal. Living wages, free college, racial, gender, and sexual equality” doesn’t sell itself because people understand that that is not achievable or, if achievable, has been already achieved. Bernie and later Clinton talked about those things all the time so people knew what they wanted… You also said that “white high school grads … were Bernie’s base” before they voted for Trump and then you said that voting for Trump was voting for racism, sexism, violence, etc. Don’t you see a contradiction here? And I also want to point out that Democratic Party shifted significantly to the left since Clinton – just look who is running for DNC chair and Pelosi’s re-election.

    Mr. Kingstad, no one wants to return to real laissez faire – it is a straw man. You, on the other hand, want to take our country to socialism (call it Democratic or otherwise – it is still socialism) which has failed every time in history but which young people still “believe in.”

    Ms. Sullivan, will you please clarify what were the great qualifications of Hillary Clinton? You keep insisting on that but do not give any proof…

    • Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 12/02/2016 - 11:35 am.

      It’s her knowledge of the issues. Complicated issues, that Mr Trump doesn’t even know are complicated, much less have solutions to.

      Pay attention to Trump’s cabinet choices, Mr. Gutman. And learn.

      • Submitted by Margaret Houlehan on 12/02/2016 - 08:24 pm.

        Constance

        Agreed. What are Trump’s or any of the other of the clown car’s qualifications? Scott Walker was a one trick pony busting unions, Cruz is a theocrat, Bush slept through the primaries in the belief his family dynasty was his ticket.

      • Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 12/02/2016 - 08:59 pm.

        How do you know?

        But how do you know that she has the knowledge? Usually knowledge is judged by actions and reset with Russia and bombing Libya are not very reassuring…

      • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 12/03/2016 - 11:11 pm.

        By that logic I’m Qualified to be President

        It takes more than knowledge of Issues, good judgment, a willingness to do the right thing even if it is hard, not being beholden to big interests.

        By my list only Jill Stein qualifies, maybe me too, but I’m never running lol

    • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 12/02/2016 - 11:59 am.

      You had it much better

      The early 90’s unemployment spike was a ripple compared to the tsunami of 2008.
      https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/UNRATE

      What a shame that some kids younger than me are gullible. Maybe if we had a functional press core that tried to actually challenge power, and by power I mean money, we wouldn’t have people so desperate that they latch onto anything.

      Sanders wasn’t a socialist. He was just a little left of a New Deal Democrat. He wasn’t advocating anything that hasn’t worked successfully in Europe.

      • Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 12/02/2016 - 06:57 pm.

        What’s possible and what’s not

        All the information is readily available on the Internet – no need to blame media for that. One just needs to have the knowledge and desire to analyze it and be able to make own conclusions and young people do not have that (or do not want to do it). And here lies the problem of thinking that it works in Europe and so will work in America. First, it works in Europe because they do not spend anything on their defense relying instead on American protection and second, they are very homogenous societies (I guess that 95% of people living in Denmark are Danes). And of course it really doesn’t work very well there either anymore…

        • Submitted by Phil Uhrich on 12/03/2016 - 11:28 pm.

          Are you a neocon?

          Ms. Gutman,

          If you are gonna roll out the American Exceptionalism gives us license to go on endless regime change wars of choice then this is a pointless discussion.

          So the richest country ever can’t afford to save money by nationalizing healthcare? There isn’t a single person who would tell you that who isn’t in the pocket of the insurance or pharma lobby. Hell, even socialist Cuba has much better healthcare despite the fact we’ve been pushing regime change via sanctions and/or coup for decades.

          A financial transaction tax, like the UK has, to pay for college would be a boom for the economy. The reason we are stuck in stagnation is because Wall Street has turned us all into debt slaves that can’t afford to buy anything. Obama bailing out Wall Street did nothing but shift the debt burden from mortgages to student loans. Wall Street rigging it so bankruptcy isn’t an option will be really painful when that bubble pops.
          https://www.stlouisfed.org/~/media/Files/PDFs/HFS/assets/2016/Alpert_Hockett_postcrisis_progress_report.pdf

          • Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 12/03/2016 - 10:41 pm.

            Not exactly

            Mr. Uhrich, I am not a neocon do not think America should try forcing other countries into democracy but I think America should intervene when it fits its interests because America’s interests in most cases align with the world (do you want Russia or China lead the world?) And Cuban health care is pathetic – just read about it in my comments to Eric Black’s article about Cuba. On the other hand, if America is so bad, why so many people are trying to get her risking their lives?

        • Submitted by Jon Lord on 12/03/2016 - 12:28 pm.

          Something is going to change

          the work force in this country, and it has been happening for a long time now. Just below the horizon of most people’s awareness. That’s automation, I’ve designed some systems myself. Robotics if you will. Jobs will still move away from our country until automation does those jobs also, then maybe they’ll come back. It’s going to happen with Cargill too. Things have to change here, and the Republicans can’t see it or willfully won’t. Trump will save a few jobs for a while and it will cost ‘the government’ a lot of money that could be used to offset a still diminishing workforce. It’s like taking from Peter to pay Paul by Trump’s way. It’s going to happen. More and more people are going to be living on the edge and more and more will need to rely on a humane government, in the likeness of a country such as Denmark. It’s going to happen to the UK also…and is happening just like here. Automation can’t be stopped although it can be ignored until it becomes a much larger problem than we face today. Republicans have a very rare opportunity now…either wake up or be the poster boy of the screw up, and glean the rewards of either.

        • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 12/03/2016 - 07:57 pm.

          Problem!

          If we all have equal access to the same information (all information?) how is it we come up with diametrically opposed positions on most every topic here on MinnPost?
          One needs to have the knowledge? Problem as many far-center lefties (Democrats see it), the nighties don’t know what they don’t know and are unwilling to find out, or incapable of aligning their thinking to facts and logic rather than a web link, or slogan. Even the far lefties don’t agree that more central lefties “Get it” Wasn’t that the point of the article?

          • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/05/2016 - 09:47 am.

            Being informed isn’t about access

            It’s about having the capacity to recognize reliable sources. Sure, I could get my information from fake news sites, I have “access” to them just like everyone else.

            • Submitted by Anthony Walsh on 12/05/2016 - 12:04 pm.

              Who is accesssing who?

              All of the pro-Trump elders I know spend a lot of time on Fbook, were more than ready to believe all of the fake news in their “feeds” that they didn’t knowingly sign up for. They didn’t go looking for it. It found them.

  20. Submitted by richard hamer on 12/02/2016 - 07:14 am.

    Agenda for Improving our Democracy

    1) pass a federal law defining the method for drawing congressional districts; districts must be based on demographic and economic data; resulting districts must reflect natural communities and economic watersheds; districts cannot be based on voting behavior. The purpose would be to remove gerrymandered districts (which currently benefit representatives from both parties) and encourage the election of representatives whose concerns center on community needs; it would also encourage better turnover in the House, where currently most incumbents are returned to office year after year.

    2) with respect to FCC broadcasting licenses, re-institute the Fairness Doctrine and equal-time rules. These rules required media outlets to present balanced perspectives on controversial public issues. They prevented the media from splitting into right and left wing alternatives and helped the population to avoid obtaining news from a short selected list of outlets “approved” by those who define a political identity.

    • Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/05/2016 - 09:50 am.

      Great ideas for a start, but…

      Before any of this is going to happen we have to elect democrats who will put it on the table. The last time I asked Franken about re-establishing the equal time rules for instance, he was against it. Democrats always walk away from redistricting fixes because in the end they think they’ll get their chance to redraw the districts one day, and so it goes.

  21. Submitted by Solly Johnson on 12/02/2016 - 07:39 pm.

    Thanks

    Mr. Uhrich, except for the part of your article where you say you will vote for the GOP, I agree with you. Clinton had a serious inability to connect with voters, and the Democratic establishment has to look in the mirror rather than blame Comey, third party voters, and others for her loss

  22. Submitted by Nick Foreman on 12/05/2016 - 01:56 pm.

    I have had it with the white class

    That expects everything for free, especially white males. No different than male priests only. You will be sorry in four years.

  23. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/06/2016 - 09:16 am.

    No, American’s don’t want a happy medium.

    Earlier in this comment thread around the 50th or 60th comment there’s been a little ongoing sub-thread that started as a conversation between myself and Matt Haas. I’ve bopped this down to the end here just to bring it back to the main discussion. The thread discusses the appeal and strategy of progressive agendas, the best way to promote them, and location of HRC on a continuum that includes progressive agendas. The most recent contributions to that thread come from Steve Titterud and Cathy Erickson.
    Ms. Erickson says:

    “But isn’t this what…
    .
    many Americans wanted? A happy medium between the far left and far right?
    Had Clinton explained her “triangulation” rather than representing a “more left” (but not left enough for many) platform would she had received more support from those who didn’t want to vote for Trump? (I need to learn more about this “third way”)”

    Ms. Erickson’s question cuts right to the heart of the discussion.

    The future of the democratic party and maybe our country itself will depend on the answer to this question. I think the “happy medium” is an imaginary comfort zone for complacent liberals who don’t want to challenge the elite or the status quo beyond cosmetic increments. I think that’s precisely why people like Mr. Uhrich say they’re done with the democratic party.

    The truth is that there is no “radical” left on the American political landscape, therefore no “medium” between moderate republicans or conservatives can possibly represent true moderation. The space between conservative and reactionary conservatives is not where most American’s want to be, nor where they want their government or politicians, yet that’s where “Third Way” democrats moved the party, and that’s why Clinton just lost to someone who convinced people he was more likely to promote change.

    The “happy middle” was an illusion that Third Way democrats created in order to service the elite, and that illusion is starting to crumble all over the world under the weight of crushing reality. Stalled economic progress, prosperity, and security for the majority while the elite minority accumulate massive and obscene wealth is NOT a happy medium. An ongoing health care crises, stalled equality initiatives, collapsing environments, and increasingly restricted access to the ballot box are NOT the happy medium. This is clearly NOT what most Americans wanted, they wanted someone who would dramatically shake things up and once again, complacent liberals choose to sit in their comfort zone if incrementalism while reactionaries claimed the mantle of populism and revolution. Instead of giving us choice between two populist candidates, one liberal, the other not, democrats gave us choice between a mediocre technocrat promising limited tweaks, and a dynamic populist has promised (albeit dishonestly) to tilt at the elite on behalf of average Americans.

    This isn’t the first time neo-libeal democrats have blown an election like this in pursuit of an imaginary “happy middle”, but it is the most spectacular fail against the most defeatable republican candidate in history.

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