Democrat Watch

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Re: Democrat Watch

#1981  Postby Spearthrower » Jun 07, 2021 6:20 am

Rohingya atrocities


Just to be clear: I did mean atrocities against Rohingya, but morning and semantically meaningful syntax are not happy bedfellows.
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1982  Postby Spearthrower » Jun 07, 2021 6:24 am

Seabass wrote:
They put her in a friggin' comic book for god's sake. :facepalm:

Image


Ewww.


Seabass wrote:Don't get me wrong—I like her, compared to most of them—I'm just saying, let's try to keep a little perspective...


With a lot of politicians in other countries, I don't know nor need to know comprehensive details about their policy positions because the nuance isn't particularly relevant to my life, but it's not hard to see that AOC has at least taken a position, and that it's substantively different than those usually found on either side of the binary divide. Plus, from what I've seen of her, she seems smart, outspoken, and tough - I think she's doing exactly what she needs to do. But I am not going to pretend to know her darkest secrets, or what she posted on social media 7 years ago.
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1983  Postby The_Piper » Jun 07, 2021 10:51 am

I'd carry her babies. :mrgreen: (J/K no kids for me.)
arugula2 wrote:
The_Piper wrote:What is she obfuscating, I don't get it? Her personal anecdote was probably unnecessary but I don't see harm in that either.

Can't keep it short, sorry. Too layered, and it's mostly backstory. Kudos for responding to the substance of the post. My answer is the 4 paragraphs after this one - the remainder of the post addresses the rest of the speech. Puerto Rico was a minor observation, but it's telling. I don't expect "the history of Palestine" to make these emotional deflections obvious... and if it's subtle, it's because she's signaling. She/her staff put a lot of thought into the speech (that's why her difficulty in sticking to the bullet points in front of her is also telling: it means she/her staff haven't fully landed on a message).

Anyway - the anecdote. It's about US terrorism against Puerto Rico. Far from being unnecessary, it's a sharp criticism of US foreign policy, so it applies here. I'll skip the tangent about Puerto Rico as a window into US crimes against humanity - if you're interested, check out the history... and if you do, please consider Cuba and the Philippines too, as those 3 territories are the same skeleton in that massive closet. I suggest Philippines first, and squaring how T.Roosevelt talks about the territory with how his deputy Taft does as governor there. Goes a long way in explaining the modern world.

The people she's signaling to are her constituents, many of whom swarmed the streets of New York waving Palestinian flags & screaming about crimes against humanity. Right before that happened (which has obviously caught most politicians by surprise) she was trying to cozy up to conservative Jewish organizations in her city. By their own account, it was a long time coming (Jewish Insider). That's important in understanding AOC's political calculus after 2 years in office. She's taking specific steps to build alliances within Congress, by ingratiating herself to influential groups her conservative Dem colleagues rely on. A year ago she got a lot of shit for refusing to pay into the DNC mafia racket, and she's now sending checks to right-wing Dems who don't want her money because she's still in Pelosi’s doghouse (ignore the Politico framing... the point is she's sending checks to campaigns who'd be getting paid through DNC - a direct reversal of her stance a year ago). Money from small dollar donations her voters were pretty sure were earmarked for progressive causes.

Anyway, her pivot to conservative Jewish orgs is part of that same stealth rebranding effort (I'll leave guesses about why she's trying to rebrand for another time). The April 6th Jewish Insider article refers to an interview she gave the day before to JCRC-NY, 29 minutes into which, the host finally asks a question about Israel, and she gives a tortured answer that tries as much as possible to equivocate (that's why it's tortured). I queued up the question, but you can skip exactly 2 minutes ahead for her answer. The question is only interesting because it says outright that "American Jews" support a 2-state solution contingent on Israeli security - which is borderline slanderous, because American Jews are now mostly turned off by that argument. Many flag-wavers are among them.

Those^ 3 paragraphs come together in the anecdote like this: The US committed crimes against humanity in Puerto Rico; and the US is now committing crimes against humanity in Gaza, via Netanyahu. But that part’s missing, see? I strongly suspect her notes made it clear (albeit more tactfully than I just did), and that she adjusted on-the-fly (during the speech or right before)... and I sensed this "adjusting" throughout. So the Puerto Rico thing hangs like a Florida chad, which is exactly why you thought it was "unnecessary", when in fact it was the point of the speech. Material for a staffer memoir, maybe.

...
The speech, snapshot:
    - concerns are apparently over "the rights of Palestinians and Israelis alike that have been impacted..."
    - but then says "this is not about both sides", it's "about an imbalance of power"
    - wonders if communities in PR "were practice for this", but doesn't make the US role explicit, though she comes close. Only the people she's signaling to will likely get the analogy, making it (I think) deliberately weaker, and even irrelevant to most others. (See quoted post)
    - double emphasis on Congresswomen being barred from entering Israel, with more indignation here than anywhere else in the speech
    - absurd claim that there’s no ‘standing up’ for Gaza because that would "...force us to confront the incarceration of children at our border", which we're "scared" to do
The last one's a double-whammy... 1) Who's she talking about? Her colleagues in Congress? And who'd they be standing up to, if not Biden? (Even the TYT producer thinks that's what she means.) The simplest explanation is that she's too scared to directly call out the administration's actions in Gaza... yet that's what she's criticizing in the same breath. And 2) the reason we don't stand up is now the embarrassment of the southern border? It's not the billions of dollars in cash and military equipment, plus logistical support, that she SIGNALED was the reason when she brought up Puerto Rico? Of course it is. Then what were the mentions of children at the border (and Gazan children) if not props in response to criticism about her seesawing stance on border detentions in the previous 3 months? (Meaning it’s awkward & opportunist, in addition to distracting from the Gaza question.)

Anyway, I bring a generous assumption... suggesting she's in over her head with foreign policy, and that this is her stumbling through it. That would be fine, up to a point. But she's sharp, and it shouldn't take more than a few weeks of conversations with her staff & any number of experts (or her 2 colleagues) who'd be thrilled to educate her on a messy (if not exactly complicated) history. What Palestinians need is for people like her to eliminate - not regurgitate - ambiguity, false equivocation, and diversion.

But realistically, that’s just a suggestion/excuse - I don’t think it’s the case. I think this is a politician trying to please everyone & anger no one (which itself displays the same naïveté I guess).

Added: almost forgot. "Do Palestinians have a right to survive?" is a gimmick talking point, designed to mask the real question, which is "Do Palestinians have a right to defend themselves?" (Those two are linked: the reason for Israel's unilateral cease-fire a few days ago is Palestinians quote-unquote "surviving", in part thanks to Iran/Hezbollah.) Her back-room dealing & sucking up to conservative Dems & their right-wing donors explains the watered-down talking point. What's weird is, her ambiguous comment about the US blocking a statement at the UN is also related, I think accidentally. She's talking about China's Sec.Council resolution calling for a cease-fire, which the US blocked several times. (China is a de facto ally of Israel - so infer what that says about the US here.) The US has blocked dozens of resolutions on behalf of Israel over the decades, including some that broadly affirm all people's right to self-defense against occupation & apartheid.

The word “apartheid” is also not new for West Bank & Gaza. Apartheid S.African governments were Israel’s steadiest allies since the 40's, alongside the US (infer what that says about the US here) and the Mandela revolution saw the freeing of Palestine from occupation as a natural extension of itself. In the earliest days (40s & 50s), when the US’s dual role as the world’s main arms supplier & last global enforcer of white supremacist colonialism hadn’t fully gelled (the latter is bc France & Britain would be expelled almost everywhere... Middle East history is a microcosm of that power shift between the 3 empires, but so are Indochina & most of Africa) one could frame this racist support in terms of preserving the state of Israel as a kind of British mistake. US governments since then have shown their cards by explicitly defending Israel’s illegal occupations, illegal attacks on Gaza, illegal expansion of settlements, and illegal apartheid laws, bc Israel is their best non-NATO customer for weapons & their best leverage against the Arab states.

There’s a reason it’s mostly young, uncorrupted Americans protesting: standards have shifted. The US position has corroded even “civilized” conversation about Palestinians. Used to be, political Zionism itself was being questioned. Today, when Bernie is asked if people should be using words like “apartheid” to describe Israeli apartheid, he says no. That’s the degrading effect of US policy on good people’s values.
Thanks for the reply. I'm going to keep it brief, If we wantto keep democrats in the majority in the house, democrats in conservative states need to be supported. Otherwise Rep's like AOC are even more disempowered. Republicans being in control is much worse for you and I than feckless Democrats holding the majority. I'd rather channel the rage toward Manchin and Sinema, who are shitting on progressives. And of course towards Republicans who are shitting on everyone but the very rich and corporations.
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1984  Postby The_Piper » Jun 07, 2021 10:55 am

Speaking of Manchin and Sinema, they've said they would support $11 minimum wage. I get that it's not nearly enough, but why not do that right this moment than keep it at $7.25? $11 is less bad. It would dramatically improve the lives of millions of the poorest Americans. If the fear is that then we can't do $15 per hour, well 1., that's bullshit, and 2., we can't do $15 an hour now anyways unless some Republicans get on board, because Manchin and Sinema won't get on board. Jesus christ.
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1985  Postby The_Piper » Jun 07, 2021 12:04 pm

Hermit wrote:Kudos for aragula's arugula2's take on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in post #1970 and Seabass's reply to it and to post #1971. :thumbup:

fify
For a long time my brain read arugula's username as "argula". Argula was a pretty cool name. :tongue:
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1986  Postby Seabass » Jun 07, 2021 9:03 pm

"Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities." —Voltaire
"They want to take away your hamburgers. This is what Stalin dreamt about but never achieved." —Sebastian Gorka
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1987  Postby The_Piper » Jun 08, 2021 1:08 am

I'm not sure I've seen Beau so wound up before.
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1988  Postby Seabass » Jun 23, 2021 5:30 am

"Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities." —Voltaire
"They want to take away your hamburgers. This is what Stalin dreamt about but never achieved." —Sebastian Gorka
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1989  Postby arugula2 » Aug 02, 2021 5:54 am

Seabass wrote:Image

^ Is this parody? Probably not. :(

edit: fixed quote
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1990  Postby arugula2 » Aug 02, 2021 5:58 am

A lot of tedious spaghetti-straightening to do here. It'll have to be spread out. :confused:

Meanwhile: the first thing anyone needs to do, when asking 'why the fixation on AOC', is to get more acquianted with the history of civil rights in this country. That includes not just black liberation movements & (recent) immigrant rights, but also labor rights. Any valid "fixation" would have to do with the party con. The party tries to either destroy the radical new-comer who's come to expose & rebuild it, or it tries to absorb her - a dual strategy of every sociopathic power structure I know of, so no one's surprised by it (except maybe useful idiots on social media, I guess). The party con is an expression of class politics, so it's really just the wealthy class interests buying the allegiance of that occasional radical who makes it into the ranks. When they can, they'll raise up a candidate who can mimic progressive talking points and (the latest fashion) someone who's brown - like the party is doing to Nina Turner as we speak. Turner's a bit more famous than most, but the party has done exactly the same to dozens of lefty types in the past couple years. Hundreds in the last 5-6 decades. It's what it does. If you don't understand what AOC's PAC meant, and what the role of the DLC & DCCC is... then you don't know jack shit about AOC, the Dem party, or movements around either, and your reactions will show it. How little a century of civil rights movements registers, then.

Afaik, that reaction post to AOC's speech on Palestine is the first time I've ever made a post about her, other than a single sentence in another post about her fundraising plan (that was a year ago, and what a loooong year it's been for her) and a recent reply to a silly example of internet-memes-as-politics - with, again, a very short description of her self-stated goals: to sometimes scold Democrats, and to raise money for progressive challengers of Democrats. She's never interested me much, and there are plenty of other "progressive" pols to "fixate" on... as best I can tell, I'm the only one "fixating" on them, in this thread (aside from Bernie, who gets the unsurprising white male bump). Except for my replies following the Palestine post, I've written at least 5x more on Cori Bush, for example, just in this thread. Not that anyone gives a fuck about Cori Bush, amirite?

The Palestine speech happened to come up on a youtube feed. (I still subscribe to TYT Investigates - used to be for Jonathan Larsen's thoughtful reportage, but after a year+ of nothing but clips of speeches with cringey, Dem-simping ( ;) ) titles, I guess I give up on him. Well, he did post an update on the Buttigieg police tapes a couple months ago.) What I care about is Palestine. As I suggested in that very first post, she probably doesn't. I offered that she might just be ignorant on foreign policy, but I doubt that explains the speech. Also, turns out she was a foreign policy major in uni, and... handled foreign affairs issues for Ted Kennedy as a clerk. So I'm still leaning on 'she doesn't give a fuck' (and has to pretend she does).

That's neither here nor there, bc I don't care which it is. She has a platform, it's huge, and so her words matter. Pretty simple. It seemed more complicated only because people 'fixating' on AOC as anything other than a tool of the people who elected her (or a tool of the people who have since co-opted her) got into their feelings about someone criticizing her... dismissed my arguments with straw men & association fallacies... and then couldn't exhibit basic understanding of the topic of the speech (or even of the criticisms, because I've had to explain basic premises I shouldn't have had to).

I've only glanced at more recent posts... I'll get to them. But oy vey :facepalm2: How do I know Bernie thinks it's apartheid? Jfc. Later.
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1991  Postby Spearthrower » Aug 02, 2021 6:23 am

fap
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1992  Postby arugula2 » Aug 03, 2021 6:57 am

Only on Twitter at the moment... local pest Max Blumenthal heckling what he calls the "soft-handed little chickenhawk" Adam Schiff, who showed up for his photo-op a few hours ago at the anti-eviction sit-in on Capitol Hill (one in a string of poseurs doing this today and yesterday). Mainly trying to get Cori Bush & Jesse Jackson's air of legitimacy to rub off on him.

Martin Luther King Explains the Three Evils of Society (Grassroots DC)

edit: correct link
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1993  Postby Cito di Pense » Aug 03, 2021 7:43 am

arugula2 wrote:Only on Twitter at the moment... local pest Max Blumenthal heckling what he calls the "soft-handed little chickenhawk" Adam Schiff, who showed up for his photo-op a few hours ago at the anti-eviction sit-in on Capitol Hill (one in a string of poseurs doing this today and yesterday). Mainly trying to get Cori Bush & Jesse Jackson's air of legitimacy to rub off on him.

Martin Luther King Explains the Three Evils of Society (Grassroots DC)


Uh huh.

arugula2 wrote:it’s also not hard to sort out what real wokeness sounds like. It calls for the re-constructing of institutions, firmly centered on justice.


Well, "the re-constructing of institutions, firmly centered on justice" is not something for which we have any working examples. All your work is still ahead of you. Fulminating is not work; it's more like the consequent of "Jesus is coming, try to look busy".
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1994  Postby arugula2 » Aug 03, 2021 7:55 am

I really did miss the sloth avatar. :heart:

Image
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1995  Postby arugula2 » Aug 10, 2021 8:23 pm

Image

It took more than half a year for Dems to push him out, including after Gillibrand joined in reluctantly in March. She was the first to publicly call for Franken to leave the Senate in 2017. When asked about Cuomo: "Asking every female elected in our state when a person should resign or not resign really isn’t the conversation we should be having. The women in our state are not meant to be judges, jurors and executioners.” About her decision on Franken: She said she couldn’t take the position that “I’ll be a leader on this issue, as long as it’s not about my friends.”

:rofl:

Anyway, Cuomo was the frontrunner Biden substitute when party insiders worried about Biden's brain before the Dem convention about a year ago. The floating wasn't just from Cuomo, it was also promoted by people like Dick Morris, former Bill Clinton adviser - the type of acquaintance politicians use after leaving office to convey a message to the public & to the party. In this case the Clintons, who've always been close to Cuomo; but not unreasonably Obama too, who as late as mid-December 2019 (right before the Iowa caucus) was openly mocking the idea of "old white men" running the show. (Notice the forced logic of the Guardian article's title.) About a month after Warren's campaign had nosedived & it became clear only Biden & Sanders had popular support.

Biden maybe holds a grudge, but the party was throwing everything and everyone at the race, not just to stop Bernie, but also to substitute for Biden, including a Bloomberg and a Patrick. The one a sometimes-Republican billionaire who pushed police harassment of young black and latin men in NY even after data showed it was ineffective against violent crime, and blocked the 'Exonerated Five' from compensation for being wrongly convicted of crimes they had nothing to do with. The other was being pimped in 2012 as a counterargument to Romney because of his connection to Romneycare which morphed into 'Obamacare'. Biden was floating Patrick as a running mate in 2015. Before all that he'd become a millionaire by pushing subprime mortgages on low-income people (mostly black) via Ameriquest, leading up to the financial collapse of 2008. Broadly speaking, this is the political circle that includes Cuomo. It's the core of the Dem party, and it explains why Cuomo got away with everything he did besides sexual harassment (that rap sheet looks a lot like Biden's).
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1996  Postby arugula2 » Aug 10, 2021 9:40 pm

The_Piper wrote:Thanks for the reply. I'm going to keep it brief, If we wantto keep democrats in the majority in the house, democrats in conservative states need to be supported. Otherwise Rep's like AOC are even more disempowered*. Republicans being in control is much worse for you and I than feckless Democrats holding the majority. I'd rather channel the rage toward Manchin and Sinema, who are shitting on progressives. And of course towards Republicans who are shitting on everyone but the very rich and corporations.

Pelosi shits on progressives - regularly. Has done so since the beginning. Various others around her do it too - regularly. In fact, they go on TV and tank their campaigns. So what makes Manchin & Sinema special in this regard? I think this is part of the con. The party bosses have their own heels, to channel your irritation, and it's a win-win for them. You stay 'angry' at the 'independent' minded heels who play too nice with Republicans, and you brush off AOC's funding of candidates who would vote very similarly to Manchin and Sinema (i.e. play too nice with Republicans). If the label "Democrat" cancels out all bad politics in the case of the conservative Dems getting (and refusing, btw) her money, why does it not cancel out all bad politics in the case of Manchin and Sinema? Why would we allow the Manchin-Sinema caucus to grow, pushing progressive policies more out of reach? This is a bad wrestling script, and your answer seems to be repeating the plot but not acknowledging the script.

Since ^that is a wrestling script, the real politics come after acknowledging it: It doesn't matter who's in AOC's seat, or Ayanna Pressley's, or Ro Khanna's. What matters is that they stick to the overall purpose of their candidacy. When they do, they get rewarded, when they don't, they get challenged. It's what they get from the party leadership daily, and it works. Leadership lets them know when they've been good boys and girls, by doling out or whithholding funding, committee seats, etc. Imposing a double standard on the public isn't just logically or morally indefensible - it's very bad politics. It also produces Trumps.

What actions deserve criticism is the only serious discussion. And because that requires being aware of the issues, it's completely separate from 'Dem-Repub' sloganeering. (Our responsibility to the process doesn’t begin and end on election day - we have to keep track of all their maneuvering & call them out on it, like mature democracies do. Our problem is we’ve been conditioned to think our participation = our vote. That’s actually a lie, and it costs 45,000+ American lives a year, and who knows how many non-American ones.)

(*Added: on the contrary, the progressives who make it in, depend on constant feedback & activism. They say so themselves. That's a form of empowerment, which they can then use as a weapon against the leadership, to get concessions. It's what keeps them in office & keeps them relevant - unless they flip. Being interested in whether or not they flip is almost exactly the same as being invested in the policies one deems important. Without one, the other becomes just words.

For example, if the narrative around Cori Bush's recent protest is credible, that's exactly how this works. Directly & publicly calling out Dem leadership is empowering, and gets Bush results, which benefits millions of Americans. If Bush were to subsequently change her tune in order to maybe one day get on Pelosi's good side, millions of Americans get silenced - or worse. Bush is still figuring out her game plan, btw... it'd be a shame if she decided the force at the top outweighs the force at the bottom, propping her up.)
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1997  Postby arugula2 » Aug 11, 2021 10:45 am

Just in case the game plan isn't obvious... from a few days ago:

"This Democratic leader just went off on the woke left" (CNN)

Hakeem Jeffreys (the "leader" in the title) has been slated to take over for Pelosi since about the time AOC knocked out Crowley, who was supposedly Pelosi's pick back then. It's endearing that CNN uses the phrase "the woke left" - goes to show how much contempt legacy media have for "woke" policies (by which CNN means any policy that doesn't benefit its sponsors or its patrons in government). The writer even refers to the "woke left" as "liberals" throughout the article (and Hakeem Jeffreys is supposedly tired of those "liberals"). Whatever rant Jeffreys made followed Nina Turner's loss to Shontel Brown, who won with the help of a bunch of conservative white suburbanites (in an open primary) and $2mill in ads by the conservative Jewish lobby (DMFI is an AIPAC cutout):

Image

...and also the effort of Cleveland's black establishment (pastors, local celebrities) who, like Jeffreys, Clyburn, and pretty much the entire Congressional Black Caucus, exists to shepherd black voters into this abusive relationship. The shepherds get rich, the sheep get fleeced.

The article also includes past Pelosi quotes about AOC & Co.
"All these people have their public whatever and their Twitter world. But they didn't have any following. They're four people and that's how many votes they got."

"While there are people who have a large number of Twitter followers, what's important is that we have large numbers of votes on the floor of the House."

"It will be one of several or maybe many suggestions that we receive. The green dream, or whatever they call it, nobody knows what it is, but they're for it, right?"

They draw the distinction themselves, savvy? If they don't remember to muster up this level of contempt for Manchin-Sinemas, more people might learn to see through the bullshit.
[Reveal] Spoiler: Lawrence O'Donnell, former Dem party staffer
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1998  Postby Hermit » Aug 11, 2021 1:30 pm

arugula2 wrote:

0:52 -1:11 "If you don't show them you're capable of not voting for them they don't have to listen to you. I promise you that. I worked within the Democratic Party. I didn't listen or have to listen to anything on The Left while I was working in the Democratic Party because The Left had nowhere [else] to go."
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Re: Democrat Watch

#1999  Postby The_Piper » Aug 11, 2021 2:40 pm

I'm well aware of that dynamic. What am I supposed to do, vote for Trumps? I sat out of elections instead, which isn't any help either. I know Pelosi sucks, I've posted here that she should retire. I don't know how to fix it, but I vote for the least bad choice because it's better than the alternative. I don't understand why I should spare the Manchins my ire and instead channel it towards the few who do represent my interests.
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The_Piper
 
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Re: Democrat Watch

#2000  Postby Tortured_Genius » Aug 11, 2021 3:21 pm

The evils of a 2 party first-past-the-post system.

It is vanishingly improbable that you ever be presented with a candidate or party with which you can agree 100%, or even 50% and will probably end up voting for the least-worst candidate.

Opting out by not voting is essentially a vote for whichever candidate is better at maximising the value whatever votes they do get, which inevitably will favour the candidate which has most successfully gamed the system through gerrymandering, voter suppression or other underhand methods of vote fixing.
None are so hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free. - Goethe
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