Class Warfare Blog

September 18, 2017

I Will Repeat This as Often as is Necessary

On the latest episode of Bill Maher’s program (Real Time on HBO), both the host, Mr. Maher, and his two guests: Salmon Rushdie and Fran Leibowitz collectively missed the point over and over as to why the Democrats don’t have their act together. They pointed to Democrats trying to play fair when the Republicans don’t bother with the niceties, and complained that there is a branch of the Democratic Party that wants true leftist ideology in their candidates, and then there is racism.

Hello? Wrong. Wrong. Partially wrong. Donald Trump won the last election because the American people are fed up with the status quo … period.

This indelibly racist country went so far as to elect a Black man president as a statement that we were fed up with the status quo. Unfortunately, Mr. Obama cast his lot with the corporate Democrats and what we got, with or without GOP opposition, was essentially more of the same.

So, we grabbed the biggest monkey wrench available, Mr. Trump, and cast it into the gears of the government.

And, yet, the pundits still don’t get it. Neither, of course, do the politicians.

The Democrats started the process of “losing their grip on reality” in the 1970’s. They felt their coalition of working people, teachers, unions, and racial minorities wasn’t strong enough for the new America being created. So, they distanced themselves from unions, racial minorities, and working people and embraced their new core constituency: professionals. This started pretty much under Bill Clinton. Remember the Clintons and their movement to the center? Oh, that’s right, they are both still around peddling the kinds of things that have been gutting the middle class for the last, say, 50 years! Bill was for NAFTA, Hillary was for TPP (and on and on …).

So, in the last election, the Democrats couldn’t have picked a candidate more representive of the status quo than Hillary Clinton. Her new book (I haven’t read it but people are falling all over themselves quoting it to me) proves that she doesn’t “get it” either.

The American middle class, once the biggest segment of the American economic spectrum, has been decimated over and over again. Individual workers today make less than they did 50 years ago when adjusted for inflation. No part of the American Dream included that little fact. The only reason that American families have made any headway at all is because millions of American women took jobs … not because they wanted to, but because they had to establish a decent standard of middle class life for their children.

With the Great Recession of 2008, a lot of people, unable to find decent work, have dropped out of the job market, moving us more toward the 1970’s in that regard, too.

The middle class is hurting. Consider Donald Trump to be a howl of anger and pain. If we don’t “get the message” soon, what will be the next signal sent? I shudder to think.

September 7, 2017

Clinton Versus Sanders, Round 2

In Secretary Clinton’s new book, she takes on Bernie Sanders as a source of her loss in the 2016 presidential election, “(Sanders) didn’t get into the race to make sure a Democrat won the White House, he got in to disrupt the Democratic Party.” So? Did you get the message? Did you incorporate his policy suggestions? Did you co-opt his campaign? No? Oh.

People seem to be ignoring the obvious with regard to the election outcome. For one, Secretary Clinton indeed won the popular vote by a considerable margin, so it was not the total vote that caused her loss but the distribution of votes. This suggests her campaign did not emphasize the importance of a few states that could have won the day for her.

But the overwhelming elephant in the room is how a dirt bag like Donald Trump could even get close to a seasoned professional politician in the first place. The reason is obvious: under presidents Democratic and Republican for the last forty years, the middle class has been decimated over and over. The election provided a choice between “more of the same” and “something different.” While “more of the same” won the popular vote, “something different” pulled well enough that with strategic campaigning the Electoral College delivered the presidency to someone as ill-suited to the office as has ever been elected.

What would cause people to come out and vote for a clown, rather than just stay home and not vote, the traditional way to vote one’s displeasure or despair? There were a fair number of people who opted out of voting, especially young people who liked neither candidate, but the election was determined by a simple vote of “no mas,” against the status quo that had served ordinary Americans so poorly.

It doesn’t require a large stretch of the imagination to see Barrack Obama’s election to the office as another vote against the status quo. Mr. Obama ran as someone who would change Washington for the better, as someone who actually saw poor people, and middle class people, and spoke to them rather than around them. But the desire for hope and change turned fairly quickly into “more of the same,” resulting in an even larger vote against the status quo. If voting in a Black man to the office, in a nation still substantial afflicted with racism, didn’t work, how about a clown?

Get the message?

In Secretary Clinton’s case, the answer is “apparently not.”

December 22, 2016

The Final Tally is In And …

2016 Presidential Election Final Vote Tally

Hillary Clinton 65,844,610

Donald Trump 62,979,636

Others 7,804,213

Trump wins! Trump wins!

… WTF?

When we vote for, say, U.S. Senator, all of the votes in the state get counted, but not any from other states. It doesn’t matter which county or city your are in as long as you are a resident of the state. Ditto, for U.S. Representative: all votes within the district are counted. It doesn’t matter which county you are in or city.

So, explain to me why this is not so for the most important federal office of them all? Do not explain to me why the Electoral College at one time had merit, explain to me why it has merit now.

And, if you argue that the Electoral College has merit, should the concept not be applied to all federal offices?

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