Friday, November 11, 2016

Oh My God, NO! Part 2: What Do Progressives Do From Here?

So here we find ourselves, facing a President Trump with both chambers of Congress controlled by Republicans.  


The question now is, how do we go forward?  How can us progressives keep moving forward and keep fighting?

Here is my three part plan for how we not only keep fighting, but we win in a complete annihilation of anyone who stands in our way:

1.) Stay woke.  News and politics is depressing right now, and it's really tempting to get away from it all.  Now, I don't recommend only following politics, as that will make anyone insane, but stay aware of what's happening.  Why is this important?  Right now, the Democratic establishment is pushing Howard Dean, lobbyist for big pharma and ex-coworker with Newt Gingrich, to be the next head of the DNC.  Right now, the Democratic establishment is pushing Tim Kaine for President in 2020.  


Now, if that causes you to ask yourself, "What the fuck?  Isn't this the shit that they pulled this year that led them to losing to Donald Trump?  Why would they do that?" then that means you're an intelligent, clear-eyed person.  The establishment, however, doesn't think that way: they think that they are blameless in this, and that they still have the right idea.  After all, they've been doing this for forty years; at this point, it's all they know.

We have to fight the Democratic establishment so that they don't keep pulling this bullshit and so that we have a party for the people that can stand up to Republicans who will do their best to destroy the planet.  Right now, Keith Ellison, with Bernie's blessing, is also running to be head of the DNC.  They need our support to help Democrats save themselves.

This also includes activism.  Pick an issue or two that you feel particularly passionate about, and fight for those on a regular basis on every level of government.  Money in politics, climate change, LGBTQ rights, international peace and a whole bunch of other issues have strong activist movements within them.  Join in with them and fight for the change you want to see.

2.) We populate Congress with progressives in 2018.  Thankfully, every two years, we get the chance to remake our federal legislature in our image.  We start now pushing for progressive House and Senate candidates who will fight for us, with emphasis on 'fight'.  As in, not look to compromise and the first sign of a struggle.  If the incumbent in your district is a true progressive, awesome good for you.  If you don't (the vast majority of the country), then we have to defeat that incumbent, regardless of party affiliation.  This isn't impossible; there is very recent precedent with the Tea Party in 2010.  There's no reason why we can't do the same exact thing.  Time to have our own Bizarro Tea Party.  

3.) We pick a super strong progressive to run for President in 2020.  Like Elizabeth Warren, for instance.  Some are pushing for Tulsi Gabbard, another fine choice.  Any strong progressive who runs a left-wing populist campaign will obliterate Trump from the universe, and you can count on that.

Voila, we have a progressive government in the span of only one Presidential term.  Will there be resistance?  Of course, but not quite as much as you think.  Over half of the country actually align with Bernie's platform with regards to the different policy positions.  People are thirsting for progressive policies; they just don't know it right now, because neither the Republicans or the establishment Democrats have offered them.  They'll back someone who is willing to fight for progressive positions.

Don't give up my friends; if we put in the work to make the change that we want to see happen, we will win and we'll win faster than you think.

To that end, I'm going to announce that I will be using this blog to find out who the progressives are in Congress and relate what I find.  How will I do this?  I will go through their policy positions and cross-reference this with their donor lists and votes in office.  I will do one Congressional Democrat every day starting tomorrow.  I'll also make a video going over my findings and posting them.  That way, we can know who we should support, who we should primary and be well informed in doing so.

That's all everyone!  Remember: we will win!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Oh My God, NO! Part 1: Why Hillary Clinton Lost

Well, there's no way that I'm getting any sleep after that fucking debacle, so may as well share some thoughts to get them off of my chest.

Considering that the vast majority of my Facebook friends are liberal, my feed has been filled with heartbreak, frustration and confusion with regards to the fact that Donald Trump is now the President-Elect of the United States.  Many are wondering: "How the hell did we get here?  How could she lose to THAT GUY!?"  I'm going to try to articulate some reasons that I think led her to lose the election to the most disliked candidate in American political history (and yes: she lost it far more than he won it).

For the sake of brevity, I won't go into the reasons that the basket of deplorables didn't vote for her: those I think are fairly obvious and they didn't cause her to lose the election, as Hillary wasn't going to win any alt-right votes anyway.

1.) She had no message about why she was good.  This is a pretty big reason in my mind.  Here's a question that I wish more people had asked her and held her feet to the fire for an answer: Why do you want to be President?  What do you want to do to move our country forward?  I don't remember anything from her or even her campaign that came remotely close to some sort of positive vision for the country.

Bernie?  I know that he was running because he wanted to have a more just society: lower income inequality, green energy to fight climate change, free and fair elections; his vision was very clear.  We all knew and know what Bernie stood and stands for.

Trump?  I know that he was running to marginalize anybody who wasn't a WASP man, to protect us from the others and (nominally) to enforce economic protectionism.  Do I believe that he's on the side of the worker?  Considering I have an IQ over 85, fuck no.  Is the racism and hatred horrifying to your average American in normal circumstances?  Hell yes!  But it was a vision.

Hillary provided none of that.  She didn't have some overarching grand vision for America and where we can go in four years.  In fact, during the Democratic primary, she even had the position that the progressive positions that Bernie was espousing were too pie in the sky.  For example, she actually said that single payer "will never, ever come to pass," in the Democratic-supposedly progressive-primary.  What the fuck?  Why are you bragging about being more conservative during the DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY!?  To make matters worse, during the General election, her message can be boiled down to: Trump bad.  Me good.  This was because Hillary never really had a vision, or a reason to be President besides the fact that she really wanted to be President.  Hence why she didn't have any sort of energy or momentum to her campaign: her rallies were tiny, the excitement around her was low and her support was very soft, leading to non-scandals like the Comey letter heavily affecting her chances, while Trump was found on tape bragging about sexual harassment and have that confirmed by 12 separate women and still was able to recover.  He had strong, steadfast support while she had none of that.

2.) Hillary is a bad candidate.  She doesn't connect with people at all; when she's in the public eye, her popularity sinks like a stone in water.  I think that it's fair to say this: people hate her.  Regardless of those feelings are justifiable or not (I happen to think that the vast majority of reasons given are complete bullshit), the people at large don't trust her.  It's unbelievably difficult to win an election when you're disliked and viewed as untrustworthy.

If that's the case though, why'd she beat Bernie?  She benefited greatly from having by FAR the higher name recognition early on in the primary, which is always helpful in getting votes, and the fact that many of the primaries were closed, meaning that the much higher population of independents in the country couldn't vote for Bernie in the primary, leaving the vote to registered Democrats, many of whom are party loyalists more prone to go for Clinton because she's been a Democrat for longer than Bernie had (stupid reason, I know, but true).  And this is before the DNC email leaks came out showing that the DNC was colluding with the Clinton campaign anyway.  Long story short, she had every possible advantage over Bernie, including the "neutral" DNC on her side, and still almost lost to a 75 year-old self-identified democratic socialist.

3.)  She represented the establishment at a time that is very pro-populist.  Let's face it: many people in the country are very much struggling to make a life for themselves here in America.  Productivity and profits have gone up very steadily over the last 40 years, while wages have remained stagnant.  A bunch of people are working multiple jobs to make sure that they and their families can survive.  The American people haven't been able to put their collective finger on it yet, but they do know that the folks in Washington, DC aren't listening to them, and they're right about that.  They haven't been listening for some time now, and the people are angry at them for not doing so.  So, when an opportunity arises to burn the establishment to the ground, they did so.  Not necessarily because they like Trump, but because they just want to cause the establishment pain for the pain that they've been feeling for decades now (this applies greatly to the rust belt states that have been hit hard by shitty trade deals).

Trump is a faux-populist; he isn't gonna do a single thing to help working families in my view, but the way to beat a faux-populist is with a real populist, as opposed to the most obvious symbol of the thing that many voters have come to believe is the reason for their suffering.

These are the 3 main reasons that I believe that Hillary lost the election to an orange, fascist, bimbo beta male in Donald Trump.  The DNC was shockingly moronic in trying to push Hillary Clinton as their nominee this cycle.

In a way, this election is a bit like a Bizarro version of the 2008 election, where the candidate who claimed he was for the people and had a vision beat the status quo, establishment candidate.  Which actually leads me to my next post: where do progressives go from here?  Here's a clue: #BizarroTeaPary.

Until next time!