DNC Open Thread

by John Holbo on July 29, 2016

Thoughts and feelings. You know you have them.

{ 154 comments }

1

Bill Benzon 07.29.16 at 7:51 am

2

BenK 07.29.16 at 10:27 am

It’s really disturbing that our best response to the wikileaks is ‘but THEY aren’t the ones who should have exposed our corruption!’

3

ZM 07.29.16 at 10:47 am

I am not American, but I think this outcome from the DNC is really exciting:

“US Democrats endorse WW2-scale mobilisation on climate challenge

If elected president, Hillary Clinton will convene a climate summit in the first 100 days, according to platform endorsed at Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia

Hillary Clinton will mobilise a global effort on a scale not seen since the second world war to tackle climate change, if elected US president in November.

That became official Democrat policy on Wednesday at the party’s national convention in Philadelphia.

Within 100 days of assuming office, Clinton promises to bring together engineers, scientists, policy experts and activists “to chart a course to solve the global climate crisis”.

The party called for a clean energy revolution and a federal investigation into fossil fuel companies accused of misleading the public about the risks of climate change.

It did not embrace all the most climate hawkish proposals, rejecting a carbon tax, fracking ban and climate test for new energy infrastructure.

California governor Jerry Brown used his speech to drive home the divide between Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump on global warming.

“Combating climate change, the existential threat of our time, will take heroic efforts,” he said. “You would not know it to listen to Donald Trump.”

Trump did not mention climate change once in his 76-minute speech to last week’s Republican convention and recently denied that California was experiencing a drought, Brown noted: “Trump lies.”

Brown also rejected the idea there is a trade-off between economic growth and green policies, pointing out California is outpacing the US economy while embracing carbon cutting plans.”

http://www.climatechangenews.com/2016/07/28/us-democrats-endorse-ww2-scale-mobilisation-on-climate-challenge/?mc_cid=2b410ef473&mc_eid=0b9f078224

4

Timothy Scriven 07.29.16 at 10:55 am

I have words for those who think it’s cool to mock Sanders supporters for getting emotional about their future and the future of the most powerful country on earth. Also for those who think that (admittedly only low to mid level) cheating by the DNC in favour of Clinton is no big deal, or worse, part of the functioning of a healthy party. When you’re working the phones and keyboards to the media to support a candidate, that’s absolutely cheating and in a better world would have had far more serious consequences. I also have words for those who think it’s cool to chant ‘USA!’ in response to a no war chant.

I wish I could post those words, unfortunately the comment policy and good taste means I can’t print them here.

5

bexley 07.29.16 at 11:00 am

Could someone explain what the DNC emails reveal? I haven’t paid much attention (from the UK) but reading a guardian article when the whole thing blew up suggested some DNC officials were thinking about going after Sanders (for being an atheist among other things) but didn’t.

Then the story turned to who had done the hacking etc.

6

Timothy Scriven 07.29.16 at 11:02 am

One of my pet peeves is when one side cheats in an election, but not very badly, and it gets found out after the election and people say ‘well they cheated, but it wasn’t anything really terrible like vote stuffing and it’s too late for us to hold the election again’. I’ve seen this happen so many times and it pisses me off.

The contrarian in me says it wouldn’t have been unreasonable to demand emergency state caucuses to redo the whole thing when the DNC emails came out. Having the body oversee elections being in the tank for one of the candidates is a fucking big deal.

7

Timothy Scriven 07.29.16 at 11:04 am

Bexley, basically it’s stuff like staffers speculating about what kinds of narratives would harm Sanders and help Clinton (one of them was like ‘maybe if we told everyone he’s an atheist’), working with the media to keep coverage about Clinton positive etc. etc.

8

bob mcmanus 07.29.16 at 11:18 am

Could someone explain what the DNC emails reveal?

Not one simple thing. Besides the Sanders ratf**king, which is what personality culture focuses on, there was, without getting links so consider this an average dudes pickup from the ether:

1) details on the movement of millions of campaign dollars from the DNC to the Clinton campaign, at a time when Sanders was outspending

2) embarrassing conversations about high-level donors, including discussions of ambassadorships etc

3) other embarrassing details, for instance D Wasserman-Schultz asking Biden to travel from Washington to appear at her daughter’s bat mitzvah

There are tens of thousands, and more to be released by Assange. Sifting through and analyzing them may take a while, there may not be anything sexy enough to do damage, or anything to motivate a prosecutor to take on the armies of lawyers for a decade of court battles.

9

bob mcmanus 07.29.16 at 11:28 am

Laurie Penny has provided a little Brit humour, sub-HST style on the conventions.

“Dissent will not be tolerated. Protest will not be permitted. You will shut the hell up and get on the Clinton bus as it rolls towards a future slightly less terrifying than Trump nation and you will goddamn smile about it.”

“Hillary Clinton is not offering you a vision of a better future. She is offering you a vision of yourself as a better person, a person who can turn their face away from swivel-eyed, silent-screaming evil, a person who can vote to humble themselves like good parishoners before the altar of liberal equivocation and the drag-end of the American dream. As visions go, it’s viscerally disappointing. I know you wanted more. We all did. But the alternative is fear in the dark, and a horror story whose win conditions can only be negotiated downwards.

When I was a child, I thought America was made up. Now I know it for sure. I’ve been to the haunted house where hundreds of millions of ordinary people scream in dark corners for a story worth believing, clinging to what W.H. Auden called the “euphoric dream” of everyday redemption — “Lest we should see where we are, lost in a haunted wood, children afraid of the night, who have never been happy or good.”

America has never been happy, or good. But if it stops believing that it can be, the whole damn world is going to suffer.”

10

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 11:30 am

I haven’t studied the Emails either, but the DNC controls or influences a lot of things other than messaging about the primary. There apparently was some complicated shared-fundraising system that was gamed to send money to HRC but not Sanders. The DNC influences how many debates there are, and Sanders wanted more and HRC wanted fewer. There was a complicated mini-scandal with DNC voter data that in retrospect should have tipped them off that computer security was something that they should have paid attention to.

11

novakant 07.29.16 at 11:32 am

My feelings:

Some 300 Iraqi civilians died in two terror attacks this month and nobody gives a flying f@ck anymore, instead they are crowning an Iraq war supporter and ‘liberal hawk’ who is going to make the same mistake again and again to be presidential candidate in a big circle jerk (and no, I don’t want Trump either, thanks for asking) – so I guess this could be described as frustration / desperation / depression.

12

novakant 07.29.16 at 11:34 am

13

Layman 07.29.16 at 11:48 am

“I haven’t studied the Emails either…”

…but that didn’t stop me from writing ‘here we have a situation in which there was *really was* cheating by the HRC campaign’.

Funny, that.

14

JMG 07.29.16 at 11:55 am

If the DNC had the ability to rig this contest, Sanders wouldn’t have gotten out of Iowa. It did no such thing, because it’s too weak an organization to affect the primary process, just like the RNC couldn’t stop Trump.
Clinton is a veteran pol. Like all pols, she responds to pressure, and pressure from supporters is more effective than pressure from outside. The Sanders campaign did a damn fine job of pressing her left. My advice is, keep it up. Start on Nov. 9 after you’ve helped her get elected, because then she will owe you.
Don’t go on comment threads and whine about losing a fair fight and despair of the future of the Republic. For that you will be resented, ignored and/or laughed at depending on the emotional state of your audience.

15

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 12:08 pm

@ 14 And if you’re paranoid enough to believe there’s a veiled threat in these suggestions, just ask what all those Bernie supporters got for all their dollars donated and countless hours knocking on doors and making calls.

An entirely revised and ‘worker friendly’ TPP will be signed the as soon as she steps into the Oval Office whilst the magicians with the smoke and mirrors rework the magic of 2009.

The DNC did rig the contest by ensuring no Democratic senator, or governor stepped up to challenge Clinton. There’s a little research project for the HRC ‘we did no wrong crowd’

When was the last time the VP sat out the election and only one senator, or governor made it to the primaries? I honestly don’t know, but it seems a highly relevant question.

If the answer is: very often, or even sometimes then the DNC is only guilty of rigging the system after Sanders declared. And in case you weren’t paying attention – Sanders wasn’t supposed to make it out of Iowa. Indeed, Sanders might have won Iowa and transformed the entire narrative but for a series of seven coin tosses – all of which amazingly went in the DNC favored candidate’s favor. That could be coincidence.

Check it out – really. Especially the aspiring fact-checkers in the crowd. Should be easy.

16

NomadUK 07.29.16 at 12:09 pm

Start on Nov. 9 after you’ve helped her get elected, because then she will owe you.

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

17

Layman 07.29.16 at 12:30 pm

kidneystones: “The DNC did rig the contest by ensuring no Democratic senator, or governor stepped up to challenge Clinton.”

Among the deflated candidates for the 2016 Democratic nomination were:

Senator Bernie Sanders
Governor Martin O’Malley
Senator Jim Webb
Governor Lincoln Chafee

18

Daniel O'Neil 07.29.16 at 12:33 pm

“Talking about something in an email” =/= “cheating”

There are words, and then there are actions. News flash: the DNC didn’t like Bernie Sanders. This was not news. They also got their feelings out and then got back to work, none of which involved taking illicit actions, small or large.

It kills me that we are still talking about this. You should be celebrating the beginning of the revolution you helped create. These things don’t happen overnight and in eight years there is going to be a very, very progressive Democratic candidate for president because of the work Bernie Sanders did. This shit takes TIME.

19

Layman 07.29.16 at 12:35 pm

kidneystones: “When was the last time the VP sat out the election and only one senator, or governor made it to the primaries.”

In 2016, 2 Senators and a Governor made it to the primaries. In 2008, 3 Senators made it to the primaries.

20

The Raven 07.29.16 at 12:36 pm

“I’m sick of hearing about your damn emails.”—Sanders

It’s so huge I’m still processing it. The first female Presidential candidate from a major US party; that’s a big deal. It looks like the Sanders campaign got some good concessions from the Clinton campaign. I hope the women, blacks, and Latinos the Democrats are courting turn out and get the chance to vote in November.

One thing I am not seeing in all responses to the awfulness that is Trump is a sense of just how much damage he could do. A Trump Presidency, we know, would be a disaster. A Trump Presidency would probably include wars, outbursts of anti-Islamic, racist, antisemitic, and nationalist violence, and an economic collapse that would make 2008 look minor. Some of my friends would be bankrupted with medical debt, or even die.

21

JMG 07.29.16 at 12:44 pm

I just love the leftists whose basic political position is “we’re licked before we start. There’s no hope.” Why be political at all with that attitude? Live a completely private life.

22

David Coombs 07.29.16 at 12:44 pm

@18

Well, it depends on how you define illicit.

23

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 12:46 pm

JMG: “It did no such thing, because it’s too weak an organization to affect the primary process, just like the RNC couldn’t stop Trump.”

Unless the DNC was powerful enough to actually rig the process for a predetermined outcome, there was no cheating — is that the idea?

JMG: “Don’t go on comment threads and whine about losing a fair fight and despair of the future of the Republic. For that you will be resented, ignored and/or laughed at depending on the emotional state of your audience.”

Yeah, OK. Luckily I’m not a teenager or this response would be crushing.

In every U.S. left/liberal discussion there’s the perennial set of options: primary challenge to pull the party to the left, third party, drop out of electoral politics altogether. People who want to make the first one preferable or even possible have to concern themselves with tawdry details like whether the DNC is cheating. This isn’t “let’s look forwards, not backwards” as Obama said about various war criminals — people have to look backwards if they want this process to be used going forwards.

24

Yan 07.29.16 at 12:50 pm

“in eight years there is going to be a very, very progressive Democratic candidate for president because of the work Bernie Sanders did.”

Pretty sure the convention very strongly signaled the next anointees in line: Cory Booker and Michelle Obama.

25

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 12:53 pm

David Coombs links to something that mentions what I referred to as the “complicated shared-fundraising system that was gamed to send money to HRC”. As far as I understand it, the DNC raised money that was ostensibly supposed to be used for state parties, the state parties sent it back to the DNC, and the DNC mostly sent it to the Clinton campaign. It seems to have been something around $5 million. That’s cheating. No, it is not enough to rig an election.

26

Raven Onthill 07.29.16 at 12:55 pm

Bob McManus@9: But also: “There’s a bad moon rising, the best lack all conviction and the worst have a million branded baseball caps and greasy little fingers grasping for the nuclear button. Good luck to us all.”

27

Raven Onthill 07.29.16 at 12:58 pm

JMG@21: Jane Sanders: “[Bernard Sanders] lost this election by more votes than can be explained by the things that people are concerned about — the voting irregularities, or the DNC. If it was closer, we might have done something differently, but there is no choice. It’s not like we’re stopping because we want to. We’re stopping because those are the rules of the game. That’s democracy. There is a winner and a loser in every election.

“We are focused on the issues, and we’re winning momentum. And I think some people might not understand that. He had no choice but to step down. His feeling was that Donald Trump is too dangerous to not defeat. So his choice was to endorse — but, at the same time, fight like hell to keep the revolution alive, and keep alive the issues that we all stand behind. So we need [our supporters]. We need them engaged, and we need them to participate. And whatever they decide, it’s their conscience, and they should decide whatever they want. Our job is to defeat Donald Trump; our conscience says we can’t have that.” — Jane Sanders

28

Toby 07.29.16 at 1:03 pm

What struck me was how much this Democratic Party became the party of the flag and patriotism in a way that was not possible before. The contrasts between the two parties was extraordinary.

I think this is a function of the way Trump is a cuckoo in the Republican nest. It is heard to imagine Ronald Reagan signalling that NATO was expendable for budgetary reasons, or saying something like “Only I can fix it”, foreshadowing a monarchical Presidency. Reagan was “Morning in America”, with Trump it is Black Night in America and only he can illuminate it.

Massive walls and Protectionism are all Big Government projects, as are mass deportations and (apparently) a Federal focus on law and order in the states.
And nothing about deficits, fiscal probity and living within means? Not a lot about abortion and Planned Parenthood. Oh, they might be in the platform, but who reads it? It does have something about “therapy” for gay people, by the way.

And an unashamed outreach to white males ONLY in the Trump convention speech. This was a party that pledged itself to becoming “welcoming” to gays, Hispanics and blacks when it was chastened in 2012 by Obama’s re-election.

The Democrats OTOH ticked all the boxes for a modern, moderately progressive democracy, operating across all colours and creeds. I was sincerely moved by Khiza Khan and his wife talking about their son’s death in Iraq. I do not think I have ever seen a candidate so firmly rebuked at a national convention as on this occasion.

I sense a re-alignment is in progress. Bloomberg must surely represent moderate, pro-business Republicans, fearing economic chaos as Trump instigates trade wars. But will unionised blue collar voters in the Rust Belt vote for Trump? He is banking on it.

Is this the last kick of the white rage that has loomed over American politics since the 1970s? Or when it finally wins the White House?

29

jake the antisoshul soshulist 07.29.16 at 1:10 pm

You work within the flawed, compromised political system you have, not the one you wish you had.
You support the flawed, compromised candidate you have, not the magical pony you wish you had.

30

cs 07.29.16 at 1:19 pm

I’ve seen a lot of comments on Twitter along the lines of BenK (#2 above) i.e. talk about Russia doing the hacking is just an attempt to distract from the more important subject of what the emails show. To me, if the accusations re Russia’s involvement are more or less true, that is an important story. Ideally we should be able to give appropriate attention to both parts of the story. Maybe that is unrealistic, but it is unjustified to say people should only talk about the part of the story that favors my political priors.

31

Yan 07.29.16 at 1:24 pm

27,

“Is this the last kick of the white rage that has loomed over American politics since the 1970s? Or when it finally wins the White House?”

This seems to be a common view among Democrats: that this is a decisive moment in which we go one way or the other. But surely that’s false. Defeating Trump won’t make reactionary politics go away, just as Sanders’ loss won’t make progressives go away. Until the democrats break decisively from the New Democratic mold, there will be more, probably worse, Trumps. Democratic denial and fantasy will only make this cycle last longer.

32

Layman 07.29.16 at 1:41 pm

Rich P: “As far as I understand it, the DNC raised money that was ostensibly supposed to be used for state parties, the state parties sent it back to the DNC, and the DNC mostly sent it to the Clinton campaign.”

Perhaps your understanding of the matter would be improved if you actually read the link David Coombs linked to. There was an agreed-upon allocation of funds between the Clinton campaign, the DNC, and the participating state parties. In practice, the Clinton campaign got the split agreed upon, while the DNC kept more of the money which was earmarked for the state. The state funds in question were not then transferred to the Clinton campaign.

As to ‘illicit’, the very summary Coombs offered concludes:

“The DNC was claiming that the JFC was going to be used to help state parties, and presumably the allocation formula suggested as much, but in actuality all the funds eventually ended up in the coffers of the DNC. Though not illegal, it is certainly very embarrassing. “

The summary does agree with Rich Puchalsky in one regard, making a number of specious and unsupported claims, such as:

“…the DNC, which was doing all it could to help the Clinton campaign.”

What was the DNC doing – all it could – to help the Clinton campaign? The article doesn’t say.

“…What is worse is that what the Clinton campaign and the DNC were saying publicly about their JFC’s activities did not line up with how the funds were ultimately being treated. The DNC was claiming that the JFC was going to be used to help state parties…”

What was the Clinton campaign claiming – worse! – about how the funds were being treated? The article doesn’t say.

“The DNC and the Clinton campaign knew as much…”

How do we know that the Clinton campaign knew that individual state parties were sending their share back to the DNC? The article doesn’t say.

“…these emails suggest that even more egregious and possibly illegal activity may have been occurring between the DNC and the Clinton campaign.”

How do the emails suggest this, and what do they suggest? The article doesn’t say.

“…it appears the DNC had already become an arm of the Clinton campaign.”

In what way had the DNC become an arm of the Clinton campaign, and what did they actually do on behalf of the campaign? The article, strangely, does not say.

The real question is, who actually wrote this smear piece? One might be forgiven for thinking it was Rich Puchalsky.

33

jake the antisoshul soshulist 07.29.16 at 1:49 pm

Right wing populism has a taste of power, so they will hunger for more.
Plus, their meme that Clinton is chosen by the establishment to be president
will allow them to never admit they actually lost.
For, at least, the near to mid term future, the reactionary right will be an
influential force in American politics. Hopefully, they can be kept from
control of the levers of power.

34

casmilus 07.29.16 at 2:02 pm

@21

“I just love the leftists whose basic political position is “we’re licked before we start. There’s no hope.” Why be political at all with that attitude? Live a completely private life.”

Politics is “performative” for such people.

A Corbyn rally is jolly good fun if you enjoy seeing home-made posters and t-shirts with amusing slogans on them. Less so if you’re bothered about policy. Mind you, the Vote Leave audience are not notably more serious or realistic, even th0ugh they wear more respectable clothes.

35

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 2:06 pm

Nobody stepped up to answer my question, so here are the results using the history of the Iowa caucuses from 1976. http://caucuses.desmoinesregister.com/caucus-history-past-years-results/

In every election from 1974 through 2016 at least two national democrats – a governor, a senator, or a vice-president competed for the nomination for president. (sitting presidents ran unopposed). The 2016 election, therefore, is a noteworthy deviation from this norm. It suggests at the very least that the current nominee is not running as a candidate in the way that we understand candidacy since 1974, or before. But rather as a sitting president. Given that the nominee is clearly not a sitting president we are left to imagine how, or why, no other candidate entered the race. The nominee, in fact, had a great deal of difficulty defeating an independent candidate in a race in which the Democratic National Committee abandoned neutrality. Running as a de facto incumbent may improve the odds of winning. It is worth noting, however, that in the two previous elections – when just two candidates competed for the nomination – 1980 and 2000, the Democratic candidate lost – in 1980 by a landslide, and in 2000 when left leaning voters decided the system was rigged and opted for a third party candidate.

2016 Hillary Clinton Unopposed by any Democrat

2012 Barack Obama – sitting President

2008
Barack Obama Senator
John Edwards Senator
Hillary Clinton Senator
Bill Richardson Governor
Joe Biden Senator

2004
John Kerry (you get the point)
John Edwards
Howard Dean
Dick Gehpartdt
Dennis Kucinich
Wesley Clark
Joe Lieberman
Al Sharpton

2000
Al Gore
Bill Bradley

1996 Bill Clinton – sitting President

1992
Tom Harkin
Paul Tsongas
Bill Clinton
Bob Kerrey
Jerry Brown

1988
Richard Gephart
Paul Simon
Michael Dukakis
Jesse Jackson
Bruce Babbitt
Gary Hart
Al Gore

1984
Walter Mondale
Gary Hart
George McGovern
Alan Cranston
John Glenn
Reuben Askew
Jesse Jackson
Ernest Hollings

1980
Jimmy Carter
Edward Kennedy

1976
Jimmy Carter
Birch Bayh
Fred Harris
Morris Udall
Sargent Shriver
Henry Jackson

36

Layman 07.29.16 at 2:13 pm

“2016 Hillary Clinton Unopposed by any Democrat”

Iowa caucus results 2016

Clinton – 49.9%
Sanders – 49.6%
O’Malley – 0.6%

http://www.nytimes.com/elections/results/iowa

37

William Timberman 07.29.16 at 2:15 pm

MacAuliffe, Bloomberg, and Kaine, covering all the bases. Krugman confirmed as red-baiter-in-chief. Bill’s blowjob contrition. Not one, but two mellifluous Obamas. Bernie under the yoke. What little is left of my old New Left friends, now in their sixties and seventies, glassy-eyed with Hillary fervor. And wouldn’t you know it, the Russians are still coming.

Trump all that if you can, Donald. Maybe Ivanka could show a little more ankle….

38

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 2:17 pm

And, yes, I’m aware that Jimmy Carter was a sitting president. His, too, is a noteworthy exception, but for obviously different reasons. 2016 is the first election in which only one nationally ranked Democrat – a senator or governor – has competed in the Iowa primary.

Statistical accident, or rigged politics – you decide. Even without the DNC hacked emails the 2016 ‘nomination’ process stinks to high heaven. With the emails, there’s an extremely strong case to be made for electoral fraud in the court of public opinion.

What was that about getting treated fairly after November 9th?

Say hello to your future!

39

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 2:22 pm

Layman: “The real question is, who actually wrote this smear piece?”

Ah yes, questions that demand an answer. Who wrote it? Presumably the person’s name at the bottom of the piece where it says that this person wrote this piece. Unless it was ghost-written, of course. I advise that you look into that.

But why, Layman asks, do I keep treating some people as not worth talking to? What makes them such bad interlocutors? It must be that I’m arrogant: it is unpossible that people here could write drivel and nothing but drivel.

Here’s another story to the money transfers. This isn’t a ginned-up scandal.

40

Layman 07.29.16 at 2:28 pm

“Here’s another story to the money transfers. This isn’t a ginned-up scandal.”

Actually, it’s the same story, from the same source, perpetrating the same innuendo. Do try to keep up, Rich.

41

Layman 07.29.16 at 2:33 pm

kidneystones: “2016 is the first election in which only one nationally ranked Democrat – a senator or governor – has competed in the Iowa primary.”

Meanwhile, back on Earth, 3 Democratic Senators or Governors competed in the Iowa Caucuses. We’ll leave it to kidneystones to check back issues of Sports Illustrated to determine the ‘national ranking’ of each.

42

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 2:38 pm

Bernie Sanders: Politifact:http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2016/feb/23/bernie-sanders-democrat/

“His Senate website and press materials continue to label him as an “independent” while his campaign website lists him as a “Democratic candidate.” In his home state of Vermont, there is no party registration. So can Sanders accurately claim to be unaffiliated with a political party while still running for the Democratic nomination and sometimes calling himself a Democrat? It may seem oxymoronic, but yes, he can.”

Sanders is not a national level Democrat. Sanders declared his candidacy for the Democratic nomination as an insurgent in April, 2016, to crash the coronation. He was and is an independent. Indeed, Sanders has already publicly severed his affiliation with the Democratic party. He returns to the Senate as an independent.

43

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 2:42 pm

Layman: “Actually, it’s the same story, from the same source, perpetrating the same innuendo.”

What’s worst about people like Layman is that I feel like I have to keep correcting them, which is a complete waste of time. If only people weren’t wrong on the Internet.

The first link was to an “explainer” kind of piece written by Troy McCurry, an attorney with the Gober Group. It attempts to explain what’s going on with the story based on expertise with this kind of law, presumably. It references a Politico piece that supposedly broke the story (not really — but let’s go on) which is by Kenneth P. Vogel and Isaac Arnsdorf. Are these the same story, from the same source? Well, no.

Is the Politico piece the only source for this story? No. In particular, the Sanders campaign complained about this practice while it was going on. There have been earlier waves of stories about it. The Politico piece may or may not have been the first to look at FEC filings and reference the Emails: I don’t know.

But this is “innuendo” because it’s complicated and people can’t immediately understand it and who cares anyways. OK. Wow our politics is stupid.

44

awy 07.29.16 at 2:43 pm

if you listen to the clinton policy guys tell it, this ‘coronation’ is saddled with the task of some extremely difficult policy problems. i don’t think it’s a coronation, but a huge challenge and responsibility.

45

Layman 07.29.16 at 2:53 pm

@kidneystones

Oddly enough, when candidates file for elections, they have to declare their party affiliation. Who would have thought it?

http://docquery.fec.gov/pdf/533/15031422533/15031422533.pdf

I sure if you keep qualifying your original claim, you’ll arrive at a point where it bears some vague relationship with the facts. Good luck!

46

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 2:57 pm

The factual record confirms that the 2016 election presidential election is the only election since 1974 in which Democratic primary voters could choose from a field of exactly one national level Democratic candidate. (In elections that did not involve a sitting Democratic president)

@40 Thanks for quibbling about the phrasing! Really. Allows me to really hammer home the point!

Excellent!

47

Layman 07.29.16 at 2:57 pm

Rich P: “Is the Politico piece the only source for this story?”

This is excellent news! Now, perhaps you can produce one which supports this claim you made:

“As far as I understand it, the DNC raised money that was ostensibly supposed to be used for state parties, the state parties sent it back to the DNC, and the DNC mostly sent it to the Clinton campaign.

Or, alternatively, you an admit that there’s no evidence that the DNC transferred DNC or state party money to the Clinton campaign.

Or, another alternative, you can claim that such requests – or requesters – are beneath your contempt.

Or, another alternative, you can simply not respond, as seems to be your habit when someone calls you on your bullshit.

You choose.

48

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 3:03 pm

@ 42 Not a bit. He never adds anything, but his quibbles result in helping us frame much tighter and more robust arguments of our own. Right now, he’s asking the world to ignore Sanders life-long career as an Independent and claim him as one of Bill and Hillary’s own.

He must have a lot of spare time on his hands. Pat him on the head. He likes that.

49

faustusnotes 07.29.16 at 3:09 pm

Layman that’s three times you have corrected Kidneystones and he hasn’t stopped. That’s some awesome Dunning-Kruger.

I’m really disappointed to see people saying that HRC is just another right-wing con. This election the Dems are running on the most left-wing platform since, well, since any reasonable country had its last election – but for you guys, since forever. Yet somehow we’re supposed to believe she is the most neo-liberal Dem ever. This is your chance to shine, America! To actually begin to correct some of the many, many things that blight your society. And yet here we have a bunch of lefties complaining that the most left-wing platform since forever is too right wing to vote for.

Obviously if American left wingers want to vote against their own interests, due to some weird masochist tic, that’s their look out. But the whole world is watching this election, waiting to know if we’re going to have a solution to global warming or if this is it, the year that decided the fate of the planet. But please you guys, just keep on being butt-hurt about your nice uncle. He supports the nominee, but you want to throw the entire future of industrial civilization away because he didn’t win a million more votes and that’s HRC’s fault, not yours!

50

casmilus 07.29.16 at 3:10 pm

I thought 1940 and 1960 were the vintage years for crooked US politics?

51

Jim Harrison 07.29.16 at 3:19 pm

Patriotism is an ambiguous emotion. It can be an expression of ethnic nationalism, but in the American case it can also be an expression of loyalty to an ideal that transcends blood and soil. The heirs of the secessionists wave the flag, but so did Lincoln in the name of union. I recall a passage from a letter Hannah Arendt wrote to Karl Jaspers where she contrasted European and American antisemitism. She pointed out that there were lots of Americans who didn’t like Jews and didn’t want to socialize with them and yet would never deny them their political rights because the basic contract of American democracy was inclusive.

Were the chants of USA! USA! at the convention schmalzy? I suppose so, but I’ve been waiting for the party to reclaim its right to that schmalz for quite a while, not only because of its potent political effectiveness but because I simply believe in it myself.

52

efcdons 07.29.16 at 3:23 pm

If the DNC was trying to rig the election they did a pretty bad job of it.

The primary annoyed me a lot at times. PK deciding he was suddenly an expert on political theory and practice. The attempt to marginalize and infantilize Sanders and his supporters. The demand for 500 page white papers for any of Sanders policy proposals without requesting the same from Clinton. The clear DNC bias when the party Charter and Bylaws require “impartiality and evenhandeness” toward all presidential primary candidates.

But I’m also damn proud of what we made Hillary (or allowed, depending on your view) do in regards to policy, the platform, and even the convention. This is a marathon, not a sprint. Like Don Chipp (Australian 3rd party politician in the 80s) said the job now is to “keep the bastards honest” and show the mainstream Dems that this isn’t going away. Attention must be paid as we’ll be watching them every step of the way and because we will be voting in droves they’ll need us as a vital part of the Democratic coalition moving forward.

53

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 3:23 pm

@ 48 Hey, it’s the art critic. Rigged election – which in your universe is a sign of honesty. HRC is a proven liar, a proven neocon, a proven warmonger, and now a proven thief.

She spent the last two years giving 225k a pop speeches to her many elite pals. And you think she’s working for somebody different?

I blame your racist daddy. And that’s it, before I write something rude.

54

faustusnotes 07.29.16 at 3:25 pm

Kidneystones, you never write anything that isn’t rude. You have nothing else to say. The election wasn’t rigged, you don’t have any evidence that it was, and you’re in thrall to a carnival barker with small hands who wants to bang his own daughter. No one is listening to you, and the sooner you go away the better.

55

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 3:37 pm

@53 I was hoping ‘Well, Egypt” would show up. We disagree. I take racism seriously, hence my belief that your willingness to hurl the charge blindly means three things a/you’re just mad at daddy b/ you don’t take racism seriously at all c/ you’ve very little to offer in terms of invective, and on any other topic I that I can see. Certainly not art, or politics. And that really is it. Sorry, if something rude slipped out.

You’re a fraud, but please don’t take offense.

56

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 3:42 pm

Whether you think that DNC money was transferred to the HRC campaign or not depends, in part, on whether you consider money sent to the joint fundraising campaign to be DNC money. In part it depends on whether you think that money sent to state campaigns and then sent back to the DNC is, effectively, money sent to the HRC campaign, since that is what the DNC is going to spend it on. In part it depends on an analysis of what the DNC was spending its own money on during the campaign — such as messaging that favored HRC over Sanders.

Here, with a minute of Googling, is an earlier article (I wanted to get Deutch’s letter directly but couldn’t):

Deutch also said filings showed that all $2.6 million of HVF’s costs for staff salaries and overhead associated with running the joint committee were actually reimbursements to the Clinton campaign, which provided those services. Deutch argued that that fact “raises equally serious concerns” that Clinton is using the joint fundraising committee to “subsidize” her campaign.

57

Yan 07.29.16 at 3:47 pm

Faustusnotes 48, much of your point could have been made convincingly (see efcdons’ reasonable 51 for a sense of what it might have looked like) if you didn’t misrepresent your opposition.

No one said HRC is just another right wing con, and no one has said they’re not voting for. I’ve only seen two posters say so on other threads, and almost everyone else has explicitly said they’ll vote for her.

It’s also absurd to use that most left wing platform to criticize criticism of HRC. It’s not to her credit, we owe it to her critics.

And it’s misleading to suggest as you do that it’s the platform that people are primarily complaining about. No, it’s the person we’re supposed to trust to uphold that platform, when she adopted it only under pressure and has already with her VP and man convention speakers signaled a rightward shift.

Most here share your intention of working with the candidate and candidate we’ve got. The worry is that those who are trying to make HRC look better than she is will enable her to destroy the progress we’ve made in this campaign.

58

David Coombs 07.29.16 at 3:47 pm

@ layman

I think it’s fair to say that some might consider publicly lying about the destination of fundraising money illicit in the sense of being a tad immoral, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

59

Doctor Memory 07.29.16 at 3:47 pm

Fiddling while Rome burns. I’m sure the intricate operations of DNC flunkies, bagmen and money launderers will fascinating to the archeologists, but in the meantime the voters of the party which employs them have nominated the one candidate in the entire country capable of losing an election to Donald Trump.

You’d think this would worry people more.

60

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 3:57 pm

Doctor Memory: “You’d think this would worry people more.”

After you’ve jumped out of the plane is not really the time to worry about whether skydiving is safe. It’s done.

If people want the left to actually make primary challenges — to dig in for the long term, to organize locally and do a marathon not a sprint and all the other cliches — then this stuff has to be figured out after the fact and before the next election. The best time do that is when people still care about it at least a little bit. It can’t just be dismissed with “complaints from the Sanders campaign that later proved to be true are just innuendo” or “we have to worry about Trump now” or whatever else.

61

Stan 07.29.16 at 4:03 pm

“The DNC did rig the contest by ensuring no Democratic senator, or governor stepped up to challenge Clinton. There’s a little research project for the HRC ‘we did no wrong crowd’”

I don’t think you know how political parties work. It’s a potentially career-ending risk to challenge an incumbent in your own party. That risk does more than anything else to keep challengers away. The DNC didn’t need to ‘do’ anything much to keep most challengers away. Note that Sanders was not a member of the party.

62

faustusnotes 07.29.16 at 4:04 pm

Yan, noone is going to destroy the progress we’ve made in this campaign. Clinton is locked into the most left-wing platform in generations, and so long as Bernie and his crew keep the pressure on she’ll deliver. This is a great thing. But every time we bring up this junk about how it was rigged or she’s the greatest warmonger ever we disrespect everything Bernie did and we misrepresent her contribution.

Bernie lost fair and square. He nearly won fair and square. He did best in caucuses, which are managed by the DNC, and he did worst in open primaries run by states not beholden to the DNC. Whatever is in these emails is irrelevant, and in reality we know the reason Bernie lost: for good or bad he couldn’t win the black vote (I think black Americans were crazy to vote for HRC over Bernie, and that he would be much better for them as a president). That’s not a matter of corruption or DNC meddling it’s a simple fact. Bernie is aware of this and of his advantage among white people and he is pushing to turn that advantage in HRC’s favour because he understands what is important. I really wish the BernieBros here would respect that, but it doesn’t really matter – Clinton has this election in the bag already, and all that’s left is to get as many senate seats as possible.

In Australia we have a phrase: a drover’s dog could win this election. This presidential election, with Trump in the GOP place, a drover’s dog could win. The only issue now is how big the Dems will win. So get behind them, get active, win the senate and if – as I suspect he will – Trump loses his rag at one of the debates and calls Clinton a bitch, let’s win the House too. It’s time the GOP was destroyed.

63

efcdons 07.29.16 at 4:13 pm

@61
Yes! Why can’t they see the half full glass? This is a historic opportunity to push the Dems left by keeping the pressure on Clinton (through showing her the Sanders Dems are indispensable) and electing Sanders Dems to congress and state houses all across the country.

This isn’t like 2008 where Obama ran essentially centrist campaign on which people projected a more leftist sheen. Clinton has been unabashedly moving to the left. If she tacks back right when she is governing then it’s time to get (strategically) angry.

64

Leo Casey 07.29.16 at 4:23 pm

BenK @2:

Not my best response.

Julian Assange and Wikileaks has shown itself to be the willing instrument of one proto-fascist autocrat and regime (Putin, Russia) seeking to put a neo-fascist demagogue (Trump) into the White House by intervening in American elections.

I suppose that those who were willing to dismiss evidence of Assange’s rapes to defend his “progressive” character are not going to be moved by this latest revelation of his character,
but for those who have any fidelity to democratic principle, the record is appallingly obvious.

65

RNB 07.29.16 at 4:25 pm

1. The father of Humayun Khan eloquently raised question of religious liberty; and Kareem Abdul-Jabar (or was that Michael Jordan:) even went over some of its 18th century history of the Founding Father’s revolutionary response to the religious wars wracking Europe. Reminded me of Isaak Kramnick’s great book The Godless Constitution which recounts how the Founding Father’s decision to ban religious tests for the holding of public office was widely opposed in the US.

2. Former LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa astutely connected Trump’s deportation scheme back to Operation Wetback. On the previous thread I noted how Trump’s plan far exceeds even this. I also made a point that I don’t see anyone else making, which is the enormous costs and opportunity costs of Trump organizing a special deportation force for the removal of 11 million people.

3. Chelsea Clinton’s kids’ book on poverty, health inequality, gender inequality and environmental challenges has a lot of good science in it. I am impressed with what my eleven year old can explain to me after reading it, on the recommendation of an AIDS doctor who is the mother of her best friend.

It was a weird mix where Hillary Clinton seemed to be fighting the battle over the Enlightenment in terms of defending democracy against autocracy, religious liberty against intolerance and science against ignorance while at the same time to making a memorable reference to the use of twitter and promising to address climate change. So all in all, it was the 18th century combined with the 21st century, leaving Bill O’Reilly the happy references to the 19th century.

66

faustusnotes 07.29.16 at 4:34 pm

Khizr Khan’s speech was a thing of beauty, and incredibly popular. He showed how to fight back against a wannabe fascist. Notice how the right-wing websites were completely silent about Michelle Obama’s speech, and the depressed tweets from long-time right wingers about Barack’s speech. The resounding silence about Michelle’s speech says it all – they know they’re screwed. Trump fielded Scott Baio and Dana White, and basically all of the rest of American society came out for Clinton, and it wouldn’t have mattered who won the primary, it would have been the same – it’s now clear to see that the Republicans are the party of hateful emptiness, and there is no future for America except with the Democrats. The election is in the bag, it’s just a matter of how far down-ticket the damage will spread.

67

RNB 07.29.16 at 4:36 pm

While it’s clear that Trump sees the state as first and foremost an institution for repression against the free flow of people, terrorism and crime, it is not clear what the Democrats’ vision of the state is. Especially in this context of secular stagnation and Republican opposition to deficit spending. There is a desire to invest in early childhood education and a green future and to provide equal opportunities to the disabled. There is recognition that this can be done on the cheap, given historically low interest rates. But I think we could think out what the Democrats see as the main function of the state; it’s not clear to me.

And it seems that the bond markets are not predicting a Trump victory as yields on US Treasuries remain low (or would Trump screw up the world economy so much that others would be hurt more and money money would come pouring into the US again?)

68

Omega Centauri 07.29.16 at 4:47 pm

ZM@2 its almost impossible for me to get excited at a proposal like that. Firstly if she doesn’t get elected its only legacy is to be associated with a losing campaign. After Carter lost, conservation became politically radioactive for a genertation.
So the contingencies are large. First she needs to win the election. Then she needs enough support or aquiesence in congress to carry out the vision. The odds of the second being met are quite small. So at best we get a continuation of Obama, a few things done via executive action, but overall the country is still likely to remain a climate lagard official policy-wise.

I agree with JM@14 Daniel@18 Jake @28. Like all of us I have a stake in the outcome, and I don’t want my disappointment at the crappiness of the organization to get in the way of the task of increasing the odds. The corrupt party we have is the best starting point for moving forward on offer, so we either take it, or let bickering deliver us a starting point much much firther from our goals.

69

Ronan(rf) 07.29.16 at 4:58 pm

It is deeply depressing that a left that used to mock the inane, vacuous platitudes of Reagan now weeps at the inane, reaganite platitudes of the democratic establishment. I don’t blame the democratic establishment for this, (it is, after all, good politics). But a left that has adopted the critical thinking skills of Eric ericcson, and the emotional maturity of an evangelical Christian minutes before the rapture, this is what will deliver us from our current malaise ?

70

pete 07.29.16 at 5:02 pm

@61.
Indeed. I agree with all of this.

To disappointed Sanders supporters: you have three choices now. A vote for Clinton. A half a vote for Trump by staying home or voting 3rd party. Or a full vote for Trump. If you choose the second or third of these my question is why you would wish to? Is it really TPP? Really? That would seem a rather odd set of political and economic priorities to me.

71

Layman 07.29.16 at 5:18 pm

kidneystones: “Right now, he’s asking the world to ignore Sanders life-long career as an Independent and claim him as one of Bill and Hillary’s own.”

It could be worse. I could be promoting the idea that Sanders was not a Democratic candidate, at the exact same time I’m promoting the idea that Sanders didn’t get the support he deserved from the Democratic Party. If he wasn’t a Democrat, why shouldn’t the party stiff him? If he was a Democrat, why do you keep saying he wasn’t?

72

phenomenal cat 07.29.16 at 5:42 pm

I shouldn’t be, but I am surprised at the number of people commenting as if the convention represented anything other than made for teevee movie/sub-high school pep rally.

Can I get a Roland Barthes, please? I’d even settle for a Baudrillard if you got one.

73

Layman 07.29.16 at 5:46 pm

Rich P: “I wanted to get Deutch’s letter directly but couldn’t”

If you follow your own link, clink the link to the letter, an then click the ‘I’m not a robot’ button, you should be able to read the letter. And, you should read that letter.

In essence, it seems the essence of the complaint is this:

– That HVF was structured in a way that the first $2700 of any individual’s contributions went to the HRC campaign; so that efforts to raise funds for HVF, which naturally had the result of eliciting many more small than large donations, front-loaded revenue flows to the HRC campaign;
– That HVF might not be doing a good job of policing the total contributions by each individual, with the result that some individuals might be contributing more than the $2700 limit to the campaign;
– That HVF outsourced their operations to people who were also the employees of the Clinton campaign, so that HVF salaries to those people should be counted as contributions to the Clinton campaign.

To me, this looks like the ugly, legal state of campaign finance. Should a campaign be able to ally with the party to jointly raise funds from big donors, so that the party is effectively cooperating with the campaign to raise funds? Maybe not; but they can. Should people be able to be employed both by the campaign and by the joint fund-raising entity? Maybe not; but they can. Should campaign fund-raising organizations do more to enforce contribution limits? Certainly, but they routinely don’t. In fact, the Sanders campaign was cited by the FEC for accepting contributions in excess of the legal individual maximum.

74

Layman 07.29.16 at 5:53 pm

David Coombs: “I think it’s fair to say that some might consider publicly lying about the destination of fundraising money illicit in the sense of being a tad immoral, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯”

I agree, though I think it’s also fair to say you haven’t demonstrated that the HRC campaign, as opposed to the DNC, was doing any lying. It appears from what I’ve read that the flow of money from the states back to the DNC was happening outside of the control of the HVF entity. Money was distributed by HVF to the Clinton campaign, the DNC, and the state parties per an agreed formula. After the fact, the state parties were sending the money back to the DNC. It should be noted that the state party organizations routinely pass their locally-raised money to the DNC so that it can be redirected to places where it is more needed.

75

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 6:31 pm

Layman: “To me, this looks like the ugly, legal state of campaign finance.”

It’s a good thing, then, that “cheating” doesn’t mean “I can prove that a crime was committed”. The issue with HVF was brought up time and again by the Sanders campaign. The official word back from the DNC was that the money was going to help state parties. But the state parties were actually sending the money back to the DNC. And the DNC was spending money on — what? Perfectly legal messaging that favored HRC, among other things.

No one that I know of has the expectation that some prosecutor is going to come back with a conviction on campaign finance crimes. This originally came up in the context of whether the claim by Sanders supporters that there was cheating going on was factually true. And yes, when you’re sending money to state campaigns and telling everyone that you’re supporting those campaigns, but they are actually sending the money right back, and you’re spending the money in ways that favor one campaign, that’s cheating. That’s enough cheating so that the original claim by someone on the other thread that Sanders supporters had to stop accusing the HRC campaign of cheating before there could be any engagement is particularly foolish.

So let’s review. No, this isn’t a smear that I invented. No, it’s not a single-source story. Yes, it does involve what people consider to be cheating, although people are for obvious reasons not expecting anyone to be charged with crimes. No, it’s not something that we have to ignore now because we all have to come together and beat Trump. Yes, it was a waste of my time to Google this for you.

76

bruce wilder 07.29.16 at 6:49 pm

phenomenal cat: I am surprised at the number of people commenting as if the convention represented anything other than made for teevee movie/sub-high school pep rally.

The medium is the message or something, right?

American politics, domestic and international, has been developing along certain lines in a steady step-wise fashion, of incremental degeneration on several fronts.

The political conventions have evolved into carefully orchestrated made-for-teevee pep rallies, the campaigns into the manipulation of a populace of zombies by propaganda, the government itself into a feeding trough for billionaires and international affairs into perpetual war designed for the profit of some of the richest and most pathological greedheads on the planet.

Is there any limit to these processes? Every four years, we have a new test. So far, so good, I guess?

77

Layman 07.29.16 at 6:55 pm

Rich P: “This originally came up in the context of whether the claim by Sanders supporters that there was cheating going on was factually true.”

And in that context, what you claimed was this: “OK, so here we have a situation in which there was *really was* cheating by the HRC campaign…”

So, one more time: What was the cheating by the HRC campaign? You should be able to grasp, I hope, that cheating by the DNC is not (necessarily) cheating by the HRC campaign.

“Yes, it was a waste of my time to Google this for you.”

It was a waste of my time to read what you produced, since it doesn’t actually support your claim.

78

William Timberman 07.29.16 at 7:03 pm

bruce wilder @ 75

You’d think at some point they’d at least pull over for a bit and let somebody out to check the wheel bearings. All that screeching can’t be coming just from a few disgruntled Berniebros, can it?

79

bruce wilder 07.29.16 at 7:03 pm

cheating by the DNC is not (necessarily) cheating by the HRC campaign

not a logical necessity, a priori

if you know anything about the a posteriori world we live in, then your Bayesian prior on any confirmation of the Sanders’ campaign’s charges against the DNC will be evidence in favor of the hypothesis that the DNC cheating was by Hillary for Hillary. We live in a world where experience leaves no other plausible explanation.

But, of course, if you are highly motivated, you can take comfort from watching DWS go under the wheels of the bus, taking one for the team as it were.

80

Rich Puchalsky 07.29.16 at 7:09 pm

The head and controller of the HFV fund is actually a high-up official in the HRC campaign. The idea that all of this was going on and the HRC campaign wasn’t aware of it and cooperating with it is ludicrous.

81

RNB 07.29.16 at 7:12 pm

On his blog Branko Milanovic links to this piece by FT’s Philip Stephens on Teresa May comparing Hillary Clinton to whom may be instructive about the direction of the US Democratic Party:

“The comments are worth looking at alongside the single speech delivered by Mrs May in the truncated Conservative party leadership race. This too was about domestic politics rather than the momentous decision to wrench Britain out of the EU. In it she floated a range of ideas to improve the way the economy works, including the appointment of worker and consumer representatives to company boards, binding shareholder votes on executive pay and stronger controls on foreign takeovers.

The knee-jerk response to these latter suggestions has been that governments should not interfere in the operation of markets. The critics have their heads in the sand. Things have moved on since the 1970s. Sir Philip Green’s handling of the sale of the now defunct BHS — rightly and roundly condemned this week by a committee of MPs as the unacceptable face of capitalism — was at the far distant end of the scale. But a glance at the way increases in boardroom pay have outstripped by a mile improvements in corporate performance during the past decade or so is proof enough of a much deeper problem. There is too much rent-seeking and too little wealth creation.”

I don’t think even Bernie Sanders spoke of changing representation on corporate boards and binding shareholder votes on executive pay. He seems to have called for corporations to better disclose CEO pay. Stephens has doubts that May will be able to deliver on this agenda given the complexities of the Brexit process. But credits her for understanding that the Brexit vote was as much about the domestic operation of capitalism as dissatisfaction with Brussels.

Milanovic suggests that the American approach may be to hope that a resumption of a strong growth rate (in Clinton’s case supported by more aggressive fiscal policy) will reduce the unease about the way capitalism is operating.

82

Yan 07.29.16 at 7:15 pm

Phem cat 71: “I am surprised at the number of people commenting as if the convention represented anything other than made for teevee movie/sub-high school pep rally.”

Yes, but there’s a worrisome dearth of cool kids in the back row mocking the proceedings. It’s Heathers all the way down.

83

RNB 07.29.16 at 7:20 pm

As reported by Philip Stephens, May also said things that sound quite a bit like Hillary Clinton:

‘For most of the rest of it, Mrs May promised at once a kinder brand of capitalism and a government ready to intervene to iron out inequalities and take on vested interests. She highlighted the shorter lifespans and poor educational attainment of the least well off, gender and ethnic discrimination, and employment and income insecurity among what politicians like to call the hard-working classes. “When it comes to opportunity we won’t entrench the advantages of the fortunate few.”’

84

RNB 07.29.16 at 7:27 pm

faustusnotes, Josh Barro who I believe may be a neoliberal conservative also wrote a beautiful piece on Humayun Khan’s father’s speech to honor his son. Humayun’s Tomb is a famous piece of Mughal architecture; this father’s speech on his son’s tomb has become famous in the US.
http://www.businessinsider.com/khizr-khan-dnc-speech-election-trump-hillary-clinton-2016-7

85

Lalala 07.29.16 at 7:30 pm

(1) Good pushback on the hate, racism, xenophobia.

(2) Bad elements–basically talking to white men at times. We need to feel the pain of non-white peoples…we need to care about our mothers’, sisters’ and daughters’ equal wages. Etc.

(3) Many impressive variety show elements.

(4) Media never explained the Sanders’ wing…so people don’t realize that much of the discontent was about Kaine as VP.

(5) With #58 overall and quite worried. We tried this time at least. But we’re only got one anti-fascist option at this point when it comes to our vote for President.

86

bob mcmanus 07.29.16 at 7:35 pm

The political conventions have evolved into carefully orchestrated made-for-teevee pep rallies

That’s the 1/3 we see. Another third is all the state Democrats gathering for parties, and down-ticket candidates looking for talent and help.

Another third is contact-making and job-seeking. If you want a mid or low level job in the Clinton administration, or an ambassadorship or less to a minor South American nation, you need to get your name to Clinton’s Chief-of-Staff’s 2nd assistant or whomever as early as possible. Not necessarily talking about DC jobs, more like FEMA engineer or press rep for Seattle, or civil rights attorney in New Orleans. Access will get ever more difficult from here on out.

87

stevenjohnson 07.29.16 at 7:40 pm

The belief that the Democratic Party is a left party and the natural home of socialists would be nuts except so many people believe it for some reason. It’s like religion.

Sanders was allegedly an independent. It’s hard to imagine that anyone seriously thought a partisan organization would be receptive to someone who was so ostentatiously non-partisan.

The implicit assumption the nomination process for Democratic Party nomination should be nonpartisan, open to any member of the public regardless of political principles and previous affiliations, assumes that there are only going to be two parties (which might as well be labeled Ins and Outs as near as I can tell,) and that parties don’t otherwise stand for anything, like principles, policies, platforms. As may be, but I’m not sure you can call that genuine democratic politics, much less progressive politics.

88

RNB 07.29.16 at 7:44 pm

@58 As I said on the previous thread, I think people are blaming Hillary Clinton too much for her not having a commanding lead in the polls. Trump himself has strengths that no Democrat, especially a woman, can counter.

1. Trump has a base of men who have lost promotions or child custody due to sexual harassment in the past; or just don’t want to have feel bad about harassing women. Trump is very good at mobilizing his base. Look at his sympathetic comments about Roger Ailes.

2. A good number of Americans won’t ever vote Democratic because they are the tax-and-spend party and many of these Americans are sufficiently deluded about themselves that they think they’ll soon be in the top brackets.

3. There are a lot racists and nativists who are willing to pay some money for the pleasure of watching the American government round up trembling brown people and deport them.

4. The oil and gas industry will spend a lot of money to keep Clinton out of office and try to appeal to people on a bunch of false issues.

5. The right-to-life and Christian right is not voting Democratic.

Trump has a lock on 40% of the electorate that will vote.

This is not Hillary Clinton’s fault. She does need to be actively supported to defeat Trump.

89

RNB 07.29.16 at 7:55 pm

Actually adding all that up, that gives Trump 45%; the Libertarians and Greens take another 10%; Clinton has 45%
This could be 2000 all over again.

90

Doug K 07.29.16 at 8:03 pm

on the DNC email hack, I think Bruce Schneier has the most convincing account of the consequences – we have black-box voting machines with no audit trail and lousy security. What’s to stop Russia (or maybe someone else) from hacking the election ?

https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2016/07/the_security_of_11.html
“Election security is now a national security issue; federal officials need to take the lead, and they need to do it quickly.”

I’m willing to take Jane Sanders’ word for it (cf Raven Onthill @26) on the question of the internal politics in the DNC. Enough about that.
As RNB says, now is the time to actively support Hillary Clinton.

@rachelbinx on Twitter,
“gosh it will be so hard to decide between the inspiring lady who will fight for the people, and the racist/sexist demon from the hell”

91

b9n10nt 07.29.16 at 8:07 pm

Pep rallies –> symbolic rituals –> religion…is this a thing that human communities can do without?

No, and the implicit claim that one is living without religion should invite looking closer.

The “Heathers” are themselves a cult of some mysterious divinity (consumerism? individualism?)

92

bruce wilder 07.29.16 at 8:17 pm

William Timberman: You’d think at some point they’d at least pull over for a bit and let somebody out to check the wheel bearings. All that screeching can’t be coming just from a few disgruntled Berniebros, can it?

Corey Robin rather eloquently made the point in a couple of his posts that this is the last hurrah for Clinton and Clintonian/Democratic politics. Win or lose, this is the last time her characteristic Third Way, pivot to the Center gambits will work.

She has moved so far Right, that her Convention is getting plaudits from conservative punditry.

Obama, from whatever combination of latent conviction or undoubted political genius, has been doing his bit, implementing necessary preventive maintenance. His foreign policy, since Clinton left her worldwide Clinton Foundation fundraising tour as Secretary of State, has to be acknowledged as a relief from the continuation of Bush II that seemed to characterize his first term. “Don’t do stupid stuff” isn’t quite up to the standard of FDR’s Good Neighbor policy, let alone the Atlantic Charter, but it is what sensible people hope for, in place of hubris and aggressive stupid. Domestically, Obama has done a number of things to shore up the populist foundation of the Democratic Party — he’s made a show of moving on immigration; he’s made a show of moving on labor law regulations that affect overtime, which affects more people and involves more money than modest increases in the minimum wage. I am sure there’s a longer list. These things give the Democrats some credibility, if they have the sense to talk about something other than the ripe horror of Trump’s racism.

Several of our commenters are absolutely sure that it is absolutely, transcendentally obvious that Trump is a huge risk to world peace, and that the contrast with Clinton in this regard scarcely needs to be cast. If there’s any basis at all for this argument, it is derived from the much improved foreign policy of Obama’s second term, with its last desperate efforts to close Guantanamo, to open to Cuba, do a deal with Iran, stay on the margins of the war in Syria and not make it worse, continue the process of global climate talks however disappointing.

NATO expansion in Eastern Europe and the confrontations with China in the South China Sea do not portend well, but Obama has at least given us some reasons to hope for a triumph of reason. TPP and its sisters still loom in the background and Obama appears to be ready to give these attempts to institute corporate neofeudalism his all. So, I am not seeing reasons to be substantively hopeful. Labor law regulatory reform in the 8th year of his Presidency that will not be finalized in his term is a calculation, not an epiphany. I am saying that Obama has been doing preventative maintenance on the bus of the Democratic Coalition, just as Clinton herself has, chameleon-like, adapted Sanders’ colors on some salient issues.

It will be enough to get us thru the general election. I still do not believe that Trump can pull it off. The Democrats will hold together, kinda sorta, despite a drop in turnout and participation that may be truly frightening in its depth.

It is a strange political atmosphere. A lot of people are really, really unhappy with the status quo, even though the status quo isn’t particularly bad. We in the U.S. at least are not experiencing the truly bad times of deep recession let alone war. But, the post-WWII political and economic order has passed its sell-by date and we are in the period of crisis where political re-alignments occur. The magic number is 72 years; it is 72 years since the end of the Second World War, and we’ve been living thru the echoes of world crisis of 1929-1945 since 2001, the institutional order built then, crumbling about us. Our politicians are scavengers, feeding on the carrion of a herd felled by its own extreme old age.

There’s no hope here — at least no hope for the next two to four years. Who ever is elected will step into the maelstrom ill-equipped to respond.

I strongly expect that will be Clinton. For all the talk of her experience, I do not see a case for her being able to cope; she seems on so many fronts determined to do (from my perspective) the wrong things and singularly equipped by the Clinton Third Way approach to take the hazard of political paralysis and making it worse. (Not much commentary on how her VP pick may swing the Senate to the Republicans.) The case for Clinton as peaceably safe on foreign policy seems not just remarkably weak but wilfully ignorant. Clinton is malevolent.

And, yes, Trump, the narcissistic sociopath, would be a disaster in a different way, but his isolationist instincts would seem on the surface to lead in a safer direction — away from the cliff. And, there are a lot of cliffs — in the chaos of the Middle East, in the South China Sea, in NATO expansion, in the TPP.

The “cliff” isn’t an objective thing. It is a social construct, a product of the human tendency to collectively go on doing the same thing, long after it has ceased to be effective. It is so hard, politically, to coordinate our behavior, that when we find something that works we just keep doing it, long after diminishing returns have taken past effectiveness and into self-destructive territory. That’s the cliff. In 1929-32, the Republicans, who had secured a presumptive majority in the country in 1894-96 with protective tariffs and the gold standard and the country had experienced the heady prosperity that followed and the era of Progressive Reform that sought to cast progress in a conservative mold, were bound and determined against all the evidence and the ever-deepening crisis, to double down on Smoot-Hawley and Hoover’s faith in gold and balanced budgets.

The U.S. was the imploding center in that crisis. In the present crisis, it is the periphery that is falling apart, falling into deflation, political breakup and civil war. But, Clinton is the embodiment of the political impulse to continue the status quo, to double-down on the economic and international policies of Bush2-Obama, to extend and pretend. It won’t work. It never works. Because these are the moments when architects are needed, not opportunistic salvage crews. Clinton’s is a politics of controlled disinvestment and dismantling, whether she recognizes it or not and its time has run out.

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The Raven 07.29.16 at 8:36 pm

“And, yes, Trump, the narcissistic sociopath, would be a disaster in a different way, but his isolationist instincts would seem on the surface to lead in a safer direction — away from the cliff.”

My god, no. To begin with, he has been a consistent advocate of authoritarian policies, going back decades. “There’s nothing wrong with America’s Foreign Defense Policy that a little backbone can’t cure … the world is laughing at America’s politicians” he wrote in 1987, supporting what you would call an isolationist program.

So, he doesn’t want to be laughed at. Laughed at? Is this not parallel, exactly, to the fascist resentment of international humiliation. While in theory this is isolationist, in practice it is imperialist: every slight must be answer with overwhelming and escalating force.

About a month back, I wrote this about Brexit, which I think also applies to Trump and the USA:

The purpose of the European Union is to make and keep peace within Europe and in Europe’s relations with the rest of the world. Yet every state within the EU has its reactionary factions, which would rather leave the EU, regardless of consequences. People are driven in to the anti- side by years of steady immiseration and then the hard drop into poverty caused by austerity policies, and there is the queasy sense of loss of national identity.

If enough of these factions, all alike and all hating each other, come together the global economy will unravel. The networks of trade that make us a rich world, if not all of us rich people, will be dismantled and all nations will be the poorer for it. Refugees will be turned away to be crushed under brutal autocrats. Possibly [that word is the qualification of a forlorn hope] shooting wars will follow.

Trump, among others, seems to be trying to return to an 19th century international order, and that order blossomed in the 20th century into two world wars. Clinton at least does not want that.

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RNB 07.29.16 at 8:39 pm

Another very long post, Bruce Wilder.

You refer to Trump’s isolationist tendencies as if that were obvious.

1. He is intending to run a protectionist racket; that’s not isolationist. He has said that it is his goal to have NATO come on bended knee to him, promising to pay up in full. How could any reasonable person not think this sociopath would increase the risk of a civilization-ending nuclear war in the process even over the risks that NATO expansion has posed. Your post is long. I see no response to this.

2. There is no evidence that he would not strike out maniacally if he is being mocked for having encouraged successful territorial grabs by a foreign state. In a crisis like this it would be insane for him to have the nuclear codes.

2. He has pledged 30,000 more troops in Iraq; that’s not isolationist.

3. He’s relishing the possibility of torturing Muslims worldwide; that’s not isolationist.

4. Given the orders he would give in the war against Daesh, it is clear that there is an actual chance of a military coup by someone like General John Allen. This would be a terrible blow to democracy of course.

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RNB 07.29.16 at 8:41 pm

Raven: “While in theory this is isolationist, in practice it is imperialist: every slight must be answer with overwhelming and escalating force.”
Well-put!

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Raven Onthill 07.29.16 at 8:47 pm

“I do not believe Trump can pull it off?”

In the name of all that is holy, why not? The polling says he might. He has consistently pulled it off so far. I think that you (and many other leftists who really ought to know better) are making an unconscious assumption of stability, even though your theories tell you that the social order can be overturned in the blink of an eye.

“A lot of people are really, really unhappy with the status quo, even though the status quo isn’t particularly bad.”

It is if you’re under 40. Most younger people I know are looking at a lifetime of hard work and poverty. Why do you think Sanders has so many young supporters? Income inequities have risen and risen while job security is less and less. Of course people are unhappy!

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efcdons 07.29.16 at 8:48 pm

@88 RNB
There was a poll from the STL Post-Dispatch today showing Clinton and Trump tied in Missouri (one of them may have had 1% more than the other) with 10% of the vote going to Johnson. The pollster claimed all of the Johnson votes were taking votes from Trump, not Clinton. Stein was polling at ~1%. Missouri until the last two cycles was a bellweather state and it looks like Trump is helping to make MO purple again.

I think a 3rd party candidate this year is going to hurt Trump more than Clinton. I don’t think the GOP will be able to shame their voters in to not voting Johnson by pointing to Perot or something like that while the Dems will definitely be able to bring voters back from Stein by pointing to 2000.

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Raven Onthill 07.29.16 at 8:49 pm

RNB@94: Thank you. I like your list of specifics as well.

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Raven Onthill 07.29.16 at 8:52 pm

efcdons@96: that sounds right. There are some Sanders supporters who are talking voting Green, but it seems to be a small minority; polling indicates 10% of Sander’s primary supporters at most, and primary supporters are not a reliable sample of the general population.

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Omega Centauri 07.29.16 at 8:53 pm

“4. The oil and gas industry will spend a lot of money to keep Clinton out of office and try to appeal to people on a bunch of false issues. “

I was watching a couple nights back the convention coverage on CNN. To my horror it was sponsored by the oil and gas lobby. Now maybe thats sponsoring CNN not the DNC or Hillary. In any case wasn’t Clinton an all-of-the above supporter energy-wise. Or has the Bernie-pressure turned her into a born-again Green?

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Raven Onthill 07.29.16 at 8:55 pm

After Brexit I wrote:

The loser here, I think, is democracy and democratic institutions. All conservative fears about both have been confirmed. I think, at this time, given the nature of modern mass media and balloting processes, we ought to be very, very afraid of direct democracy: demagogues have far too much power in this environment.

Applies to this US general election, too. :-(

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awy 07.29.16 at 9:02 pm

Third party vote hurts the establishment more. Whether Johnson or Stein, it gives people who are interested in a protest vote but might be too scared by Trump a more palatable option.

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Raven Onthill 07.29.16 at 9:04 pm

Omega Centauri@99: “Or has the Bernie-pressure turned her into a born-again Green?”

She has moved, but has not turned into a flaming green. It is hard, with any politician in her position, to say what her personal leanings are, though I suspect in this issue she would like to take more action than the DNC is willing to commit to in its platform.

The Clinton campaign was ready to acknowledge serious problems: We need fair trade policy, inequality is a horrible problem, and unchecked climate change will wreck the planet. But when it came to specific policy changes, they often balked. Bill McKibben

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mrearl 07.29.16 at 9:09 pm

The Iowa Caucuses? Rather silly to argue about. The HVF? Snore. DNC staffers liked Hillary over a guy who was a Democrat by convenience? Shocking!

I liked Sanders myself and I’m proud of him pushing Hillary left, but it was he, not her, that was the Democrat who could lose to Trump. In a race between a Socialist and a crypto-Fascist in this country, the Socialist will still lose, even here in the 21st Century. I’m too old to see that change in my lifetime, but perhaps my children will see it, and what Bernie Sanders did will have some bearing on that, for the better I hope.

In the meantime, you kids get off my lawn, pack up your hurt feelings, and do as efcdons suggests: Keep the bastards honest. I’d appreciate it.

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bruce wilder 07.29.16 at 9:10 pm

You don’t have to convince me that Trump is horrible. I’m convinced. Authoritarian. Yep. Ignorant, lazy, sociopathic narcissist — sounds about right.

But, no matter how he is horrible, it doesn’t make Hillary better than she is.

Over and over, RNB, you argue a caricature of Trump, who admittedly is a bit of a caricature of himself, as if the extremity of your description would make Hillary Clinton the exact opposite, an angel to his devil. If only such a rhetorical alchemy was possible.

I don’t know what Trump would do. Neither do you. He says lots of things, contradictory things (not that he’s the first politician to do that.)

You can take something like his remarks on Wednesday regarding the alleged Putin hack of the DNC emails and try tendentiously to recast the sarcasm as an invitation to Putin to hack the DNC like a Watergate plumber. All that does is convince me that you are a fool and a liar. But, in that Wednesday press conference, he clearly said he thought the U.S. should stop trying to make Russia the enemy. And, you cannot acknowledge it.

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bruce wilder 07.29.16 at 9:13 pm

RNB: Given the orders he would give in the war against Daesh, it is clear that there is an actual chance of a military coup by someone like General John Allen. This would be a terrible blow to democracy of course.

That’s just bizarre speculation.

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RNB 07.29.16 at 9:26 pm

Wow I am a “fool and a liar” but Trump is only “a bit of caricature of himself.” To use your own words in this context, the extremity of your description of me is meant to make you the exact opposite, as if you are an angel to my devil.

Just for the record: I wouldn’t flip the description because you are too pathetic to be Lucifer who as we all know is an ardent Clinton supporter.

I’ll let you defend to your heart’s content what Trump said on Wednesday.

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RNB 07.29.16 at 9:29 pm

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T 07.29.16 at 9:38 pm

@Layman @kidneystones
Before the electoral season began, focus groups from both parties agreed on one thing: they didn’t want to see another Bush or Clinton. The Dem primary was decided when Warren and Biden didn’t run. Either one would have beaten her badly even w/her advantage with the black vote. The Sanders turnout made that clear. To the extent you believe the Clinton forces were instrumental in “convincing” them from running, there you have it. The DNC stuff is a side show but completely consistent with the Clinton’s MO. It’s a little like the OJ trial. (Bear with me.) The deciding event was moving the trial from West LA to downtown. Once that happened the rest was irrelevant.

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kidneystones 07.29.16 at 10:21 pm

@60 ” It’s a potentially career-ending risk to challenge an incumbent in your own party. That risk does more than anything else to keep challengers away. ” So, you regard a retired Sec. State as ‘incumbent.’ So, you’re one of those. I think that’s my point.

“The DNC didn’t need to ‘do’ anything much to keep most challengers away.” Agreed. That work was done by the Clintons and the DNC before Oct, 2015. See below.

“Note that Sanders was not a member of the party.” Agreed.

And let’s not forget this democratic feature of the party of equality. From October 2015: “The Democratic front-runner’s campaign says it has now secured the commitment of over 500 superdelegates.”

http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2015-10-28/bill-clinton-rallies-superdelegates-as-hillary-s-campaign-hints-at-growing-roster

The Democratic party superdelegates cannot be considered as anything but part of the DNC. All of these individuals, of course, rely on cash – the kind the Clintons know how to raise so well. And then there’s all that other kind of Clinton cash from the 225k a pop speeches at Goldman Sachs and also abroad.

Money buys influence – but that doesn’t, of course, mean the system is corrupt, or rigged.

Sanders and Trump both run against this kind of ‘the fix is in’ politics.

Trump still is. I hope he wins.

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J-D 07.29.16 at 10:39 pm

kidneystones 07.29.16 at 10:21 pm

Money buys influence – but that doesn’t, of course, mean the system is corrupt, or rigged.

Sanders and Trump both run against this kind of ‘the fix is in’ politics.

Yeah, Trump sure is opposed to buying influence with money.

112

LFC 07.29.16 at 10:52 pm

@bruce wilder
Did you listen to, or read a transcript of, HRC’s acceptance speech? Adopted Sanders’ lines on some key points. Didn’t sound like an embodiment of the status quo (on domestic policy, at any rate) to me.

You claim Clinton has moved to the right in the face of clear evidence that Sanders’ challenge pushed her to the left.

At some level it doesn’t matter what HRC ‘really’ believes. The positions are in her acceptance speech. They are in the platform. If she is elected and proceeds to ignore all that, she is smart enough to realize it will be at her political peril.

What you call “the cliff” is another way of talking about ‘path dependence’. Policy change, esp in the U.S. system, is not easy, esp. without a grassroots movements ‘from below’. That’s why (or one reason why) the Sanders campaign was significant. One shd also realize that important reforms sometimes originate at the state level (e.g., there is a single-payer initiative on the ballot in Colorado).

There is little to no evidence that Clinton’s current politics is one of “controlled disinvestment and dismantling” (BW’s words). In fact it’s the opposite.

Btw, did anyone catch the lines, buried in HRC’s acceptance speech, about how a 4 yr college degree shd not be the only route to a decent job? Importance of trades, (practical) skills, apprenticeships, etc. — not everyone wants to get a 4 yr degree and not everyone shd have to. It was a short passage — a couple of sentences — in the middle of a long speech, but I thought its inclusion was important and correct.

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kidneystones 07.29.16 at 11:24 pm

@ 112 “The positions are in her acceptance speech. They are in the platform. If she is elected and proceeds to ignore all that, she is smart enough to realize it will be at her political peril.” Peril? What peril?

She and the DNC conspired to keep everyone but the rich and special interests out of the process. The platform is built out a series of empty promises designed to placate the ‘little people’ deluded enough to believe they had a voice in the selection process.

What ‘power’ do you imagine Sanders supporters will bring to bear? T
he HRC victory is nothing but a coronation and proof that the Clinton hold over the Democratic party and process is effectively absolute.

HRC hasn’t bothered to hold a press conference in 200 days. You imagine she’ll be more accessible to the press once in office? Less secretive & less beholden to special interests?

Hold me to my word!

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Lee A. Arnold 07.29.16 at 11:29 pm

Met a DNC delegate, old legislator in a deep southern state (I won’t say which state) listening to the Wanamaker organ. Said the election looks like FDR ’32 or LBJ ’64. “Trump is only gonna get 8 states.”

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Layman 07.30.16 at 12:04 am

kidneystones: “The Democratic party superdelegates cannot be considered as anything but part of the DNC. “

Superdelegates are part of the DNC.
Bernie Sanders is a superdelegate.
Therefore, Bernie Sanders is part of the DNC.

Bernie Sanders is not a Democrat.
Therefore, people who are not Democrats are superdelegates.
Therefore, non-Democrats are part of the DNC.

Bernie Sanders is part of the DNC.
The DNC cheated Bernie Sanders.
Therefore Bernie Sanders cheated Bernie Sanders.

Are you sure about all this, kidneystones?

116

bruce wilder 07.30.16 at 12:05 am

LFC: Did you listen to, or read a transcript of, HRC’s acceptance speech?

I have a transcript and have been working my way thru it, and back-and-forth, a little bit at a time.

I think this is worth doing if you are making a hobby of political observation and recommend it to others.

I wouldn’t try to forecast from its entrails the actual policies of the Clinton Administration or mind-read Hillary Clinton from its content.

This is one of the times when theatre criticism is an appropriate form of political analysis. This is a sales pitch and deconstructing it as a sales pitch, even if only in your imagination, may be worthwhile. I presume that much of the speech is cobbled together from memes that focus-group well, so I would hesitate to deem any of her remarks “important and correct”. If I felt that way, I would rather say, “well she pushed my button”.

There’s no policy analysis and the conventions of the moment require certain tropes, for which she can hardly be blamed. Trump got twenty-odd mentions, God only one that I saw. Make of that what you will.

Honestly, if I were advising her, I would tell her to never mention Donald Trump by name again before the voting closed in November. Others can and should make the invidious comparisons, but it is unbecoming and a waste of time for the candidate. Obviously, I am not advising her. Trump is such a repulsive candidate by conventional standards that I understand that Clinton must see him as a great and unexpected gift, but she’s making a huge mistake to make him the centerpiece of her campaign, if that’s what she intends to do, as indicated in this speech.

My expectation is that she wins easily, with a large majority. Maybe that’s my “cliff” — thinking that the future will be like the past and what predicts electoral success will remain in the box I am familiar with. If she loses, I will be wrong about that.

I am not going to vote for her. She will win my State and she doesn’t need my vote except as a token of political legitimation, which I am not inclined to give to a corrupt war-monger. ymmv

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kidneystones 07.30.16 at 12:17 am

@ 116 BW.

You’re right, it’s political theater from this point on.There are actually a number of tic-toc breakdowns available on the framing of the platform. Their accuracy is very much open to question – because they read like the platform is nothing more than empty promises to the voters and the screwed.

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LFC 07.30.16 at 12:28 am

Ronan @69
It is deeply depressing that a left that used to mock the inane, vacuous platitudes of Reagan now weeps at the inane, reaganite platitudes of the democratic establishment. I don’t blame the democratic establishment for this, (it is, after all, good politics). But a left that has adopted the critical thinking skills of Eric ericcson, and the emotional maturity of an evangelical Christian minutes before the rapture, this is what will deliver us from our current malaise ?

Personally I’m not a fan of the overtly patriotic, American exceptionalism stuff, nor of e.g. the line “America is already great.” My reaction is some variety of ‘more of that treacle.’ Almost every country’s past is a mess in one way or another, and in the U.S. case in some obvs. ways. OTOH there are certain aspects of U.S. history and ideals that the left can justly celebrate. (The speaker who asked, in an an understated way, whether Trump had read the Constitution was v. effective, esp. given that speaker’s identity as a Muslim American.)

Trump’s themes cried out for certain counter-themes, and that’s partly why there was a vaguely Reaganesque — but *only* in terms of optimistic, uplifting affect, *not* of policy — aura at the Dem convention. All convention oratory, all political oratory, is going to include a certain percentage of generalizations and banalities. But, of course, not all platitudinous rhetoric is the same. (And not all platitudes are Reaganite, needless to say, and a case can be made, btw, that Reagan’s rhetoric itself broke from that of his predecessors in some important ways, as D. Rodgers argued in the opening chapter of Age of Fracture. Which is sort of OT but not completely.)

119

Rich Puchalsky 07.30.16 at 12:37 am

LFC: “If she is elected and proceeds to ignore all that, she is smart enough to realize it will be at her political peril.”

No politician in the U.S. is ever held to their platform or whatever they say in their acceptance speech. I have no idea why anyone thinks it’s perilous to ignore all that. What are people going to do? Vote against her when she runs for reelection in 4 years? But there will be Trump 2.0 and more Supreme Court slots open.

All of the who-cares yeah I expected that sentiment about the HFV fund is not surprising, but if you’re going to care about this moronic electoral process, you might as well take it seriously. If you want to tell deluded people that it’s possible to change this system then it’s a bit of a contradiction to be blasé about the revealed corruption.

120

LFC 07.30.16 at 12:51 am

@bruce wilder

It’s true she will win California without your vote. Obvious from your comments here that you were never going to vote for her. Everyone has to vote (or not vote) as his or her conscience directs, as the otherwise odious Cruz said at the Repub convention, and I respect that that is what you are doing (even though my own decision is different).

121

js. 07.30.16 at 12:53 am

The election is in the bag

It’s really, really not. And complacency is the last fucking thing we need right now. (Tho, faustusnotes, I do very much agree with the rest of your comment.)

122

merian 07.30.16 at 12:55 am

Re DNC email content: If I was a Democrat, involved in the party and its processes, I’d be livid. As I am not — and indeed not a citizen, though I live here — my interest is in the effect on the legitimacy of Clinton’s candidature. From the information I have, the affirmation that Sanders would have had a realistic chance to win with a more neutral DNC seems preposterous. So for me, it isn’t a big deal — it’s the Democrats’ job to implement party-internal consequences, and if they don’t, well, their bad. If they don’t and it taints future elections, they’d be bloody stupid, indeed, but it’s firmly in the other people’s problem space. (What I do find somewhat naive is the idea that the party leadership wouldn’t have had a favourite candidate, and discussed their chances among themselves.)

123

LFC 07.30.16 at 12:57 am

@Rich Puchalsky
No politician in the U.S. is ever held to their platform or whatever they say in their acceptance speech. I have no idea why anyone thinks it’s perilous to ignore all that. What are people going to do? Vote against her when she runs for reelection in 4 years?

I will not vote for her for re-election if I judge that she has blown off (or substitute whatever verb you prefer) the content of her acceptance speech in her 2016/17-2020/21 term (assuming she has one).

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Faustusnotes 07.30.16 at 1:04 am

Bruce wilder you said Clinton is further right than she has ever been. Everyone else is hailing this as the most left wing democrat platform in generations. These cant bother be true. Have you actually checked her platform? Why do you say she is further right than ever?

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merian 07.30.16 at 1:06 am

Richard P @119:

No politician in the U.S. is ever held to their platform or whatever they say in their acceptance speech. I have no idea why anyone thinks it’s perilous to ignore all that. What are people going to do?

Are we already forgetting where Trump is coming from? What sustains his attraction? If politicians don’t at least incrementally pay attention to the inconvenient parts of what’s going on economically — and actually be at least minimally beholden to the hallowed principles they’ve been affirming, to great acclamation, then we’ll get Trump 2.0 etc..

Now after this cathartic week, and probably the best PR show the Democrats could possibly have put on to counteract the RNC’s Mordor (regardless of what I think of certain themes… but I admit some of them were not without effect on me), there’s probably not much of an opportunity to bring these things up with Clinton, other than in the policed forums of debates and campaign meetings, where she obviously will have policed answers. But I’d really really hope that once she’s elected — if everyone can pull this off, because the alternative would be just too nauseating — the content of her policies gets pulled back out of the bag.

(I actually think that, leaving aside her hawkishness, which I utterly dislike, she’s got some advantages over Sanders. He understands some of the ideas better, but I’d put the advantage at 60:40. She, however, is much more effective in getting the right people into a coalition. I thought her choice of Kaine was shrewd. )

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kidneystones 07.30.16 at 1:21 am

Here’s your world headlines: about five days after the Hillary coronation is complete:

“As is the case whenever dynastic succession appears to be the norm, the argument that elections are anything other than the ratification of dynastic succession by those in power and the exclusion of those without power becomes harder to make. Cynicism breeds cynicism.

Every person in every country in the world born after 1988 knows that US Presidents are usually named Bush, or Clinton. Should Clinton win election in 2016 and again in 2020 – that’s dynastic rule from 1988 to 2024 with one noteworthy exception.

Talk about showing the international community and average Americans that in modern America anyone can become President. And forget about that meaningless Ivy League degree easily available to everyone. Pedigree certification plays no part.

Hooray for democracy!

Clinton, again!!!

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Rich Puchalsky 07.30.16 at 1:30 am

merian: “From the information I have, the affirmation that Sanders would have had a realistic chance to win with a more neutral DNC seems preposterous.”

I don’t think that’s really the point. Why should anyone do the time-honored primary challenge to pull the party to the left? It’s what everyone recommends other than third party etc. Can we at least give the people doing it some kind of procedural legitimacy?

merian: “(What I do find somewhat naive is the idea that the party leadership wouldn’t have had a favourite candidate, and discussed their chances among themselves.)”

Of course they had a favorite candidate and discussed chances. But this wasn’t that. This was millions of dollars from rich donors being moved around in a shell game in order to favor one candidate. If the GOP did this in order to win an election against Democrats — with public campaign finance money, say, or to evade campaign restrictions — then people would take it seriously. But they don’t because the people in the U.S. (unlike your case) are mainly just partisans and they want their victory lap.

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Rich Puchalsky 07.30.16 at 1:39 am

merian: “Are we already forgetting where Trump is coming from? What sustains his attraction? If politicians don’t at least incrementally pay attention to the inconvenient parts of what’s going on economically — and actually be at least minimally beholden to the hallowed principles they’ve been affirming, to great acclamation, then we’ll get Trump 2.0 etc..”

And I think we will get Trump 2.0. Trump 2.0. may be an actual fascist. I don’t expect people to read through voluminous threads full of nonsense, but in recent threads here a whole lot of people just didn’t think that economics had anything to do with what’s going on politically. They think that Trump is a racist and racists are voting for him, end of story. So nothing will change.

It’s better to get rid of Trump 1.0 and kick the can down the road than otherwise. But this reluctance to admit the obvious — that the HRC campaign cheated to win — means that people are firmly in denial. They’ll hold on to that denial through the next 4 years and no one will remember what HRC says now.

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merian 07.30.16 at 1:42 am

Goodness, it’s become really cacophonous here. John asked for feelings, and I let myself be drawn into the fruitless debate over the vaguely dodgy content of revelations, in a case where the circumstances of the revelations are a lot meatier: the moral bankruptcy of Wikileaks and the long-term worrying situation around hacking (by itself), hacking and international secret services, and the harm likely policy responses to hacking will take.

I’m uneasy about the Democrats who consider “no more war” chants in some way inappropriate for a convention. It shouldn’t be. The leading party on the left side of the spectrum needs an anti-war voice.

Not that the representatives of this voice (if it’s indeed the same people) have done themselves any favours. The California/Oregon Berniecrats (or not-crats?) come across as spoiled brats, who can’t play by the rules they originally agreed to and throw out the baby (long-term change) with the bathwater (short-term defeat). It’s rather emblematic of the actual reason that Sanders lost to Clinton: the inability to join up with the ongoing social movements, which are largely carried by people of color. It is unseemly and disrespectful to see black and Latino speakers being interrupted by white Bernie booers, most of which happened on the first day.

Other than some, I thought Sanders himself was a class act.

Some really quite outstanding speechmaking! Obama’s carefully interleaved civics lesson was rather a nice bit of filigree.

If the whole “love love love” approach is successful, maybe we can finally lower the level of cynicism. I’d like to have a calm exchange of opposing viewpoints among serious people again. Also, it’s something Clinto’s putative administration can *also* be measured against. That and the platform, and her speech, which has a lot of things that would help.

Sarah Kendzior is my new favourite US political journalist

Oh, and can we start some explanations about the more technical issues? I have a nagging feeling a lot of the anti-TPP chanting isn’t precisely based on knowledge and understanding of what kind of trade treaty does what. The problem with trade deals seems to be largely its lack of democratic oversight. They do a lot of things, and not all do the same thing.

Same for war, really, and foreign policy in general.

As for the symbolic value of Clinton getting nominated, I’ll cite the under-10 crowd. First a 9 y.o. boy who, as reported by his parent on Twitter, saw Bill Clinton step to the mike and, maybe because he picked up the name Clinton, maybe because he picked up the mood of the room, asked “Is this man the one who is running for president?”. The parental answer: “No, that’s the husband of the woman who’s running for president”. Second, the 8 y.o. daughter of two friends of mine, who was told by one of her mothers that Clinton was the first woman who might become president, and that she could be the second. “No, can’t be,” said the little girl immediately. It took a while to figure out that her reason was that she thought there must be many more between now and when she turns 35 (which she knows is the age minimum).

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merian 07.30.16 at 1:45 am

Richard, I don’t think many think “it’s just racists”, and even those who do know racists don’t just grow on trees. What I think is here.

131

Lee A. Arnold 07.30.16 at 2:19 am

Merian #129: “Goodness, it’s become really cacophonous here.”

Merian, almost all of the frequent commenters here have axes to grind and viewpoints to push. Most of them are good people, just repetitive and boring. After a while you will just skip over the names without reading the texts.

132

Alan White 07.30.16 at 3:23 am

Lee A. Arnold @ 131

Refreshing comment!

133

None 07.30.16 at 4:04 am

Lee Arnold@131 – “Most of them are good people, just repetitive and boring.”

That’s putting it politely. Some are obsessives, others at outright crackpots. One wonders about the private lives and careers of these ” frequent commenters”.

134

peter ramus 07.30.16 at 4:34 am

Nor to mention the infrequent ones.

135

Raven Onthill 07.30.16 at 7:48 am

Merian, here’s some positions opposing the TPP. I don’t have a lot of sympathy for this one; it’s mostly about intellectual property, favorable to the pharmaceutical and media industries (as if they weren’t rich enough.) But don’t underestimate the genuine risks to labor, the environment, and even food safety as well as the integrity of the US legal system. In theory the treaty deals with these risks, in practice, as with NAFTA, I expect that the rules favorable to any group without a lot of money will seldom be enforced, while those favorable to the very rich will be enforced with great intensity.

136

Frederick 07.30.16 at 8:54 am

Jeffrey St. Clair over at Counterpunch provided a day-by-day commentary on the DNC proceedings, in which he thoroughly deconstructs all of the pieties, and the sadness re some of those who spoke – e.g. Jesse Jackson

137

LFC 07.30.16 at 11:51 am

Criticizing the “frequent commenters” as a group is prob not going to result in a different corps of frequent commenters more to the liking of those leveling the criticisms. Though I suppose that outcome is not impossible, it does seem unlikely. Presumably no one reads every comment in every thread, and almost no one participates in every thread. Everyone has things to do other than read and comment on blogs, regardless of their particular circumstances or whether ‘None’ views them as “crackpots”.

138

Rich Puchalsky 07.30.16 at 11:58 am

Lee A. Arnold: “Most of them are good people, just repetitive and boring.”

I have to agree that Lee could stand to expand his vocabulary beyond “mood affiliation” and “knuckleheads”.

139

kidneystones 07.30.16 at 2:18 pm

More on the crybaby Bernie Bros from TAP

http://prospect.org/article/democrats-uniting-wounds-linger

140

Ronan(rf) 07.30.16 at 2:55 pm

Complaining about “frequent commenters” is a red herring. Everyone in the world is a moron, to a non trivial degree. Except , perhaps , for a tiny group of people at the top of the IQ distribution table who could fit in a small room. Everyone I’ve ever met, heard of, or am even vaguely aware of is/ has been / and will always be a moron, myself included. Get over yourselves America and accept your faith !!

141

Ronan(rf) 07.30.16 at 2:57 pm

Sarah kendzior in particular.

142

faustusnotes 07.30.16 at 2:57 pm

Dunno about you guys but I’ve got a nasty flu, and I’m spending my day commenting because I’m too weak and sick to get out of bed and do anything useful.

143

merian 07.30.16 at 5:04 pm

LFC @137:

Criticizing the “frequent commenters” as a group is prob not going to result in a different corps of frequent commenters more to the liking of those leveling the criticisms. Though I suppose that outcome is not impossible, it does seem unlikely.

As the one of the people who have, well, levelled a critique would be overstating it, but said something critical about CT commenters on this thread that aiming for such an outcome would, indeed, be a stupid thing. So not knowing my reason, you attribute one to me that you already know to be ineffectual and ridiculous. I wonder, is this because you can’t think of other reasons, or because you’re trying to say something insulting?

144

LFC 07.30.16 at 7:39 pm

@merian — not trying to say something insulting. My comment was mostly directed at the commenter ‘None’, not at you.

145

LFC 07.30.16 at 7:45 pm

Ronan @140
Your comments on recent threads seem to be somewhat more sweepingly sarcastic and biting than is your usual wont… the point of this (@140) in particular eludes me. (1) Everyone is a moron; (2) Something about the US “getting over itself.” Perhaps it’s
me being moronic or overly linear or something, but I don’t really see the connection between these two statements.

146

Suzanne 07.30.16 at 10:20 pm

@112: Adding to this that although the Sanders challenge did influence some of Clinton’s positions, and cheers to him for it, she was already moving to the left because a) that’s where the winds are blowing and b) that’s where her roots are.

@10: For the record, it was the O’Malley campaign that protested loudest and longest about the debate scheduling. Sanders’ people were said to be unhappy but they didn’t make much of it at the time. It’s moot because although Sanders and O’Malley both performed well, so did Clinton.

Sanders could have had a similar fundraising arrangement with the DNC had he wanted one, which he didn’t. Relations between the DNC and Sanders were poor, to say the least, but it was hardly one-sided.

Clinton did a little pushing of her own, be it noted. He performed a full layout back-flip on legal liability for gun manufacturers, a nimble trick for an older gentleman. :)

147

LFC 07.31.16 at 12:01 am

Suzanne:
Clinton did a little pushing of her own, be it noted. He performed a full layout back-flip on legal liability for gun manufacturers, a nimble trick for an older gentleman. :)

Fair enough, I guess; that was one issue where she was more progressive. I pretty much bought his rationale/explanation that it was largely about Vermont, but I know others did not.

148

Layman 07.31.16 at 12:06 am

“I pretty much bought his rationale/explanation that it was largely about Vermont, but I know others did not.”

He said, more or less, that he had to support guns in order to get re-elected. I think everyone more or less believed him. If Clinton said ‘I voted for the Iraq war in order to get re-elected’, I imagine everyone would believe her, too. But neither answer is character-enhancing.

149

LFC 07.31.16 at 1:06 am

@Layman
well it had to do more specifically w that provision on seller’s liability, iirc, but I see no pt in rehashing this. It was not one of his finest moments, for sure.

150

RNB 07.31.16 at 4:46 pm

There was also Corey Booker’s speech that Americans can’t only be held together by tolerance or shouldn’t strive to merely tolerate each other in relations of mutual indifference or what Kant would have called asocial sociality. There were connections here to political theorist Wendy Brown’s work on tolerance that could be made and surprisingly Booker who many may rightly understand to be a neoliberal was suggesting that Americans should be bound in love by common purpose, which to me suggests a telocratic rather than a neoliberal nomocratic order (referring here to Raymond Plant’s book on neoliberalism).

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Suzanne 07.31.16 at 7:03 pm

@147: Yes. He represented Vermont just as Clinton represented New York. No reason to believe he wouldn’t bend with the prevailing winds in his new party once he got to the White House and had to cope with the latest/next mass slaughter.

152

js. 08.02.16 at 3:10 am

My DNC Open Thread thought is that I wouldreally like to hear from Belle on this election. Who’s with me here?

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phenomenal cat 08.02.16 at 5:05 pm

j.s.– I imagine that Belle doesn’t want to subject her psychic aura to the virtual shitstorm that a post on the election seems to necessarily entail.

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js. 08.03.16 at 2:06 am

True. If she closed the comments, that’d be even better!

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