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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 2:52 pm 
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The added argument one I would have made is also in 2008 it was between two Dems, 2016 was a Dem and an imposter who refused to follow gentleman's agreements by Dem candidates.

Also under Obama the Dems made a huge change in the grassroots org that hurt there ability to fight state to state and Dem fundraising. I guess Hill's should have let the DNC crash.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 2:57 pm 
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Just wanted to point this out too.

Warren - CFPB
Gillenbrand - 9/11 Responders and Almost got Military Rape Reform (shockingly Obama denied her)
Harris - 3 non big attention grabbing bills in 2 years https://www.govtrack.us/congress/member ... ris/412678 (but made a name for herself in Kavanaugh and Sessions hearings
Tulsi - ???? (Besides giving the politically equivalent of a handy to Bernie supporters, what does she have to hang her hat on. Anti-Syria!? Is that a thing. (Considering none of the other 3 have the baggage of anti-LGBT history and support from White Supremacists).
Castro - ???? (I guess being HUD chair is something but besides a great story, he has nothing. I think this is about growing his profile so he can run for Senate or Gov.)


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 4:59 pm 
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Interesting twitter thread on why Tulsi is not anti-war and is anti-muslim.

https://twitter.com/mehdirhasan/status/ ... 87042?s=19


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 5:18 pm 
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There’s a difference between anti-terror strikes and regime change wars. And can people make up their minds if she’s anti-Muslim or an Assad t-o-a-d-i-e?


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 5:41 pm 
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Bowens wrote:
There’s a difference between anti-terror strikes and regime change wars. And can people make up their minds if she’s anti-Muslim or an Assad t-o-a-d-i-e?


But we just heard on the last page on how it would be nice to have and anti-war president. Wasn't that what we just heard. I have never called her a roadie. Kerry met with Assad so it is not the problem. It is that she was on Fox going after Obama for not saying Islamic terrorism, for starters.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 5:50 pm 
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Well as someone who defends Islam frequently I don’t see a problem with saying Islamic terrorism. That’s what it is. Maybe Salafist terrorism if you want to be specific.

Again there’s a difference between precision strikes and trying to topple a government. The latter has had mostly disastrous consequences. I think most would agree that we needed to do something against ISIS.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:12 pm 
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Bowens wrote:
Well as someone who defends Islam frequently I don’t see a problem with saying Islamic terrorism. That’s what it is. Maybe Salafist terrorism if you want to be specific.

Again there’s a difference between precision strikes and trying to topple a government. The latter has had mostly disastrous consequences. I think most would agree that we needed to do something against ISIS.


I get you. But Obama knew the high level of Islamophobia going around and wasn't going to feed into it. She clearly didn't give a fudge about that and decided to go on Fox. Muslim hating Hindu, seems to be the slander.

I get precision strikes but Obama was ripped for his drone usage and doing nothing about Yemen. So now it doesn't matter because her cult of personality changes the rules.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:20 pm 
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Deadtigers wrote:
Bowens wrote:
Well as someone who defends Islam frequently I don’t see a problem with saying Islamic terrorism. That’s what it is. Maybe Salafist terrorism if you want to be specific.

Again there’s a difference between precision strikes and trying to topple a government. The latter has had mostly disastrous consequences. I think most would agree that we needed to do something against ISIS.


I get you. But Obama knew the high level of Islamophobia going around and wasn't going to feed into it. She clearly didn't give a fudge about that and decided to go on Fox. Muslim hating Hindu, seems to be the slander.

I get precision strikes but Obama was ripped for his drone usage and doing nothing about Yemen. So now it doesn't matter because her cult of personality changes the rules.


Avoiding the truth though also feeds the phobia's. That was part of Obama's problems, he was to unwilling to really confront anything on occasion unless forced. There was no Islamophobia due to people calling Islamic terrorism, well Islamic Terrorism. Just like no bigotry was formed because people called the Catholic Church out on Peado protection.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:22 pm 
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Deadtigers wrote:
Bowens wrote:
Well as someone who defends Islam frequently I don’t see a problem with saying Islamic terrorism. That’s what it is. Maybe Salafist terrorism if you want to be specific.

Again there’s a difference between precision strikes and trying to topple a government. The latter has had mostly disastrous consequences. I think most would agree that we needed to do something against ISIS.


I get you. But Obama knew the high level of Islamophobia going around and wasn't going to feed into it. She clearly didn't give a fudge about that and decided to go on Fox. Muslim hating Hindu, seems to be the slander.

I get precision strikes but Obama was ripped for his drone usage and doing nothing about Yemen. So now it doesn't matter because her cult of personality changes the rules.


Obama was ripped because his drone strikes had no goal and were kiling innocents and ran for years which is different to Tulsi's precision and limited use stance.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 2:32 pm 
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eldanielfire wrote:
Deadtigers wrote:
Bowens wrote:
Well as someone who defends Islam frequently I don’t see a problem with saying Islamic terrorism. That’s what it is. Maybe Salafist terrorism if you want to be specific.

Again there’s a difference between precision strikes and trying to topple a government. The latter has had mostly disastrous consequences. I think most would agree that we needed to do something against ISIS.


I get you. But Obama knew the high level of Islamophobia going around and wasn't going to feed into it. She clearly didn't give a fudge about that and decided to go on Fox. Muslim hating Hindu, seems to be the slander.

I get precision strikes but Obama was ripped for his drone usage and doing nothing about Yemen. So now it doesn't matter because her cult of personality changes the rules.


Obama was ripped because his drone strikes had no goal and were kiling innocents and ran for years which is different to Tulsi's precision and limited use stance.


Yeah, until it goes wrong. Drones increased because Obama was dealing with a nation that was just involved in a super pointless and a completely bungled one. Actual conflict was left to supporting allies, special forces and drones. It is a lot of disingenuous debating. She says she will use them more limited and then what happens when that Intel is wrong and a school or hospital is blown up. Then people will all of a sudden understand the complexity and nuance in the anti-drone debate they lacked because it was easier to slag Obama as not being far left enough.


Last edited by Deadtigers on Sun Jan 27, 2019 2:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 2:33 pm 
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eldanielfire wrote:
Deadtigers wrote:
Bowens wrote:
Well as someone who defends Islam frequently I don’t see a problem with saying Islamic terrorism. That’s what it is. Maybe Salafist terrorism if you want to be specific.

Again there’s a difference between precision strikes and trying to topple a government. The latter has had mostly disastrous consequences. I think most would agree that we needed to do something against ISIS.


I get you. But Obama knew the high level of Islamophobia going around and wasn't going to feed into it. She clearly didn't give a fudge about that and decided to go on Fox. Muslim hating Hindu, seems to be the slander.

I get precision strikes but Obama was ripped for his drone usage and doing nothing about Yemen. So now it doesn't matter because her cult of personality changes the rules.


Avoiding the truth though also feeds the phobia's. That was part of Obama's problems, he was to unwilling to really confront anything on occasion unless forced. There was no Islamophobia due to people calling Islamic terrorism, well Islamic Terrorism. Just like no bigotry was formed because people called the Catholic Church out on Peado protection.


You ignore nuance when you want to. Obama being the first black president and have a Muslim sounding name helped create loads of hate for Muslims. The ACLU and other organizations have data that show how much anti-muslim sentiment increased once he won. It was through the roof. You combine this with how aware he was of the racism he was facing and he probably decided he wasn't gonna feed the monster.

Not the politically expedient thing to do but the right thing to do. Unless you a Steve Bannon's fav Dem. Then you go on Fox and slander the Pres.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 3:46 pm 
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Speaking of the the two wars and the crashing economy, I wanted to address, the points FR and Fonz along with Fullback ace made.

If you take your mind to 2007, the Bush 2 Admin was the worse in history (until this one). 2 wars, ridiculous debt/deficit growth and a crashed economy. The country didn't care for foreign policy. It was get out of Iraq, end Afghanistan if possible, fix the economy and anything else was a bonus. US had strategic interest in Syria but it couldn't get involved in anything, the public had absolutely no appetite, maybe minus Iraq, they might have. I am sure Eastern Europe was saying don't trust the Russians but the US public and the DoD was not in a situation where the were gonna be stretched on a third front. I think Obama being a nice guy was hoping Putin would play nice. It is no coincidence that it was about this time Vlad started making moves. He knew the US was weak, but I mean the US government's focus had to be on domestic matters and hope the world didn't burn down.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:30 pm 
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Deadtigers wrote:
Speaking of the the two wars and the crashing economy, I wanted to address, the points FR and Fonz along with Fullback ace made.

If you take your mind to 2007, the Bush 2 Admin was the worse in history (until this one). 2 wars, ridiculous debt/deficit growth and a crashed economy. The country didn't care for foreign policy. It was get out of Iraq, end Afghanistan if possible, fix the economy and anything else was a bonus. US had strategic interest in Syria but it couldn't get involved in anything, the public had absolutely no appetite, maybe minus Iraq, they might have. I am sure Eastern Europe was saying don't trust the Russians but the US public and the DoD was not in a situation where the were gonna be stretched on a third front. I think Obama being a nice guy was hoping Putin would play nice. It is no coincidence that it was about this time Vlad started making moves. He knew the US was weak, but I mean the US government's focus had to be on domestic matters and hope the world didn't burn down.


I give Obama a looot of passes because of the unusual pressure he was facing for obvious reasons and I see your point, Bush was one hell of an act to follow. But, shit ton of inoccents were killed, a nation was split in 3 parts and it could've been averted simply by showing more support at early stages rather than playing neutral, This was also not in his first term but well into his 2nd. It's not like he'd have to send drones or an army there anyway, hell they didn't start sanctioning Russia til the Crimea and Donbass were annexed and that Malaysian plane was shot down which caused a whole lot of ruckus around the world. Now can we be certain that stronger stance and earlier action would've stopped Putin for sure ? no, but he surely wouldn't have been so confident stomping into Donetsk and Sevastopol. Ukrainian government would've been more confident trying to deal with the invasion as well. And it's not likey they were unsure or there was no intelligence, everyone knew what was going on from the day one. intel started reporting about Russian buildup near Ukraine, Kazakstan and Georgian borders and intense combat training a year before the conflict started, Pro Russian rebels started gathering support as soon as Poroshenko came to power.


I mean I could go on for hours.... And Since Obama I've been a lot more cautions supporting left wing politicians. Yes their domestic policy is miles better than Republicans but they seem to have this isolationist fetish which always leads to shit storm for us in Eastern Europe. Every time someone asks them about Russia they give non answers or dodge the question, which doesn't exactly fill me with confidence. So yea I like them and all, but I'd rather not have my friends and family bombed because of their policy.

Hell there are some crazies on the left who think getting out of Korea and Japan is a great idea. Yea, lets see where that leads us.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:39 pm 
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Deadtigers wrote:
eldanielfire wrote:
Deadtigers wrote:
Bowens wrote:
Well as someone who defends Islam frequently I don’t see a problem with saying Islamic terrorism. That’s what it is. Maybe Salafist terrorism if you want to be specific.

Again there’s a difference between precision strikes and trying to topple a government. The latter has had mostly disastrous consequences. I think most would agree that we needed to do something against ISIS.


I get you. But Obama knew the high level of Islamophobia going around and wasn't going to feed into it. She clearly didn't give a fudge about that and decided to go on Fox. Muslim hating Hindu, seems to be the slander.

I get precision strikes but Obama was ripped for his drone usage and doing nothing about Yemen. So now it doesn't matter because her cult of personality changes the rules.


Obama was ripped because his drone strikes had no goal and were kiling innocents and ran for years which is different to Tulsi's precision and limited use stance.


Yeah, until it goes wrong. Drones increased because Obama was dealing with a nation that was just involved in a super pointless and a completely bungled one. Actual conflict was left to supporting allies, special forces and drones. It is a lot of disingenuous debating. She says she will use them more limited and then what happens when that Intel is wrong and a school or hospital is blown up. Then people will all of a sudden understand the complexity and nuance in the anti-drone debate they lacked because it was easier to slag Obama as not being far left enough.


Most of Obama's criticisms on drones were using Pakistan as the main example. A country the USA hasn't been at war with. And he used them constantly. The claim it's disingenuous to compare that with someone who says short targeted missions is frankly just bollocks. What's more it you contradict yourself considering you just claimed there is nuance and complexity to the debate and then can't see to differentiate between constant use and short targeted and limited use to Obama's non-stop use of them.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:45 pm 
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Deadtigers wrote:
Speaking of the the two wars and the crashing economy, I wanted to address, the points FR and Fonz along with Fullback ace made.

If you take your mind to 2007, the Bush 2 Admin was the worse in history (until this one). 2 wars, ridiculous debt/deficit growth and a crashed economy. The country didn't care for foreign policy. It was get out of Iraq, end Afghanistan if possible, fix the economy and anything else was a bonus. US had strategic interest in Syria but it couldn't get involved in anything, the public had absolutely no appetite, maybe minus Iraq, they might have. I am sure Eastern Europe was saying don't trust the Russians but the US public and the DoD was not in a situation where the were gonna be stretched on a third front. I think Obama being a nice guy was hoping Putin would play nice. It is no coincidence that it was about this time Vlad started making moves. He knew the US was weak, but I mean the US government's focus had to be on domestic matters and hope the world didn't burn down.


Obama's Syria's actions came long before Russia was heavily involved. After all he didn't exactly move away from the Bush middle eastern policy on regime change for US interests (Hilary's influence) more he went about arming rebels hoping the revolutions would do it for him thinking that would sidestep the negative PR. The CIA were already arming "rebels" in Syria when the Arab Springs kicked off and he should have already been able to see how Libya was going down the drain, instead he helped destabilize the area as badly as Bush Jr did.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:59 pm 
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Anyways, recently past few days) The Guardian have suddenly gone all reasonable on the Dem candidates, far less of the identity politics and SJW posturing and virtual signalling and saying the job should be on merit:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... s-identity

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With the nomination still up for grabs for any of the candidates, it’s imperative that we don’t fall for symbolism over substance

@cliomiso
Mon 28 Jan 2019 11.00 GMT Last modified on Mon 28 Jan 2019 11.06 GMT
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‘Voters should be wary of arguments claiming a candidate’s electability.’
Photograph: Joseph Prezioso/AFP/Getty Images
With a diverse influx of candidates, the Democratic presidential race is already being framed in historic terms. When Kirsten Gillibrand and Elizabeth Warren announced their campaigns, making it the first time two female senators would be running for a party’s presidential nomination at the same time, outlets declared that “women have already made history in the 2020 Democratic primary”.

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And when she entered the race on Martin Luther King Jr Day, Kamala Harris’s campaign logo paid tribute to Shirley Chisholm, the first black person and woman to run for a major party presidential nomination. “This moment is more than a milestone – it’s a ground-gripping convulsion,” Swanee Hunt wrote for CNN.

That the Democratic primary field is already one of the most diverse in history is a welcome fact for sure. Yet we are hardly a month into the race and the pervasive argument of representation over policy has already begun to surface.

Reporters have posited that January 2019 could be the month “that Democrats truly become the party of women” simply because more women are running. And others have dismissed criticisms of Harris, whose prosecutorial record has become a target of progressives, implying that they are a leftist conspiracy or simply unfairly weighted attacks against a black woman running for office. (This is despite the fact that some of Harris’s harshest and most comprehensive critics have been black women.)

This reductionism skates over the opportunity that the diverse Democratic field actually presents: a chance to push for the candidate not with their preferred identity, but with the most comprehensively feminist and anti-racist policy positions. For one, the person who ultimately wins the nomination will face off against a historically unpopular president. While much of this could change over a years-long campaign, early polling shows that all of the Democrats’ favored candidates are likely to beat Donald Trump.


Sahil Kapur

@sahilkapur
Democratic firm @ppppolls surveys early 2020 head-to-head contests:

Biden 53%, Trump 41%
Sanders 51%, Trump 41%
Harris 48%, Trump 41%
O’Rourke 47%, Trump 41%
Warren 48%, Trump 42%
Booker 47%, Trump 42%
Gillibrand 47%, Trump 42%

**

Trump approval: 40/57https://www.publicpolicypolling.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/PPP_Release_National_12219.pdf …

555
5:07 PM - Jan 22, 2019
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As Eric Levitz has argued over at New York magazine, this means that voters should be wary of arguments claiming a candidate’s electability. “Barring a sharp change in the political winds (or Trump’s removal from office), Democratic voters should ignore such punditry, and simply vote for whichever candidate they would most like to be president,” Levitz wrote. In other words, better to ignore media and political operatives who think Warren is “unlikable” – especially if she can both win and do so on a substantively feminist policy platform.

For progressives, this means the opportunity to push for the candidate with the policies they want. Harris should be criticized, not only because she has harmed marginalized communities in her time as a prosecutor, but also because she has shown very little willingness to grapple with that record. As the Atlantic’s Hannah Giorgis wrote in her review of Harris’s recent memoir: “It is tempting for some to view Harris’s marginalized identities as evidence enough of her progressive politics. Throughout The Truths We Hold, Harris fans this ideological beatification without deeply interrogating its roots or its consequences.”

And often, representation-first praise of candidates can help to conceal hidden policy agendas. Take Hunt, who wrote that Harris’s run “gives us a glimpse at a new reality – a leader who embodies the convergence of race and gender in America”. As journalist Melissa Gira Grant pointed out on Twitter, Hunt conveniently failed to mention that she and Harris align on policies that undermine the rights of sex workers.




Kamala Harris is making history in the 2020 race
Swanee Hunt writes that Kamala Harris announcing her presidency is more than a milstone -- it's a group-gripping convulsion. Harris is a leader who embodies the convergence of race and gender in...


Gillibrand also has to answer for less-than-feminist spots on her record, perhaps most significantly on her Wall Street-friendly stances. Empowering big banks has only resulted in disastrous consequences for women and people of color. Yet before she even announced her bid, it was reported that Gillibrand was calling up donors within the financial sector to seek their support.


None of this is to dismiss the fact that the female candidates are sure to face a barrage of sexist attacks that (potential) white male candidates like Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders won’t. When Warren announced her campaign, her “likability” was immediately questioned. Gillibrand has been continually branded as an “opportunist” for speaking out against former senator Al Franken’s alleged groping and forcibly kissing numerous women. On Monday, she was described by Fox News hosts as having a “mental illness” because of her shifting policy positions. Harris only threw her hat in the ring a few days ago and has already faced a redux of racist birther conspiracies.

But one can simultaneously acknowledge that these obstacles exist, while also holding candidates’ feet to the fire when it comes to their policies and records. This applies across the board – if Sanders ends up running, he will need to ditch the line that people working “40 hours a week” shouldn’t live in poverty. It’s harmful rhetoric that only plays into welfare reform-era ideas of deserving and undeserving poor, targeting poor black women.

With the nomination still up for grabs for any of the candidates, it’s imperative that we don’t fall for symbolism over substance. We’ve already seen that strategy fail just two years ago. Energy on the left has only grown since the 2016 election, meaning that we have a chance to see history being made: a Democratic nominee with a truly progressive policy platform.

Clio Chang is a freelance contributor based in New York City


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:07 pm 
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Is Seneca now posting as 'Eldanielfire'?


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:36 pm 
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Quote:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... ort-record

On 21 January, California senator Kamala Harris officially announced her run for the presidency. Since being first elected to office over 14 years ago, Harris has proven she’s a force to be reckoned with. Now with her bid to become president, she has been catapulted to the very fore of US politics.

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For me and many other black women, the presidential candidacy of a fellow black woman is more than exciting. But, only days after Harris’s announcement, I have already faced the assumption and even expectation – by people within and beyond my community – that I will automatically vote for her. No one, however, should take black women’s support for Harris for granted.

Like many people of color and progressives, Harris’s previous record gives me serious pause. Any candidate for office who has been a prosecutor in a racially biased criminal justice system must account for the ways in which she minimized that system’s harm or perpetuated its failures. At various points throughout her career, Harris has supported policies that have contributed to a broken criminal justice system that harms people of color at disproportionate and alarming rates.

As California’s attorney general, Harris blocked the release of non-violent offenders on the premise that they may lower the prison labor pool and threatened to enforce a one-year prison sentence for parents whose children were truant. Policies like these disproportionately harm low-income families. Truancy policies that impose jail sentences are often coupled with court fees of $300 an unexcused absence.

The court fees, (and possible loss of employment due to incarceration) could prove dire for families already living below the poverty line. Equally important, there is no empirical evidence that incarcerating parents for truancy is an effective strategy for increasing school attendance. There is however, evidence that while truancy is an issue faced in many schools in America, families most affected by harsh enforcements are those with low incomes and families of color.

As many Democratic candidates have proven to us in the past, when the price of our loyalty is that low, we get very little in return
Furthermore, the abuse of power and other forms of prosecutorial misconduct is a glaring problem in the criminal justice system. Yet Harris defended a Kern county prosecutor who committed “outrageous government misconduct” by reportedly falsifying the confession of a defendant who was “later used to threaten a life sentence”.

These are not facts that can be ignored, despite the enthusiasm around Harris, and even an innate impulse I feel to protect her. Black female candidates are poorly represented in our politics. I am worried about the inevitable sexist and racist attacks Harris will probably endure during this campaign. Simply existing as a black woman ensures that Harris is constantly under siege. America is both painfully unforgiving of our mistakes and fully committed to profiting from our success. It is a challenging intersection to navigate, and even the slightest mistake can prove fatal.

Still: black women, people of color and progressives supporting Harris need to ask tough questions about this record. This may feel like unnecessary scrutiny of an already vulnerable candidate. Yet, supporting her without at least inquiring about her decisions as a prosecutor would be tantamount to pledging our allegiance to symbolism. As many Democratic candidates have proven to us in the past, when the price of our loyalty is that low, we get very little in return. And despite thinly veiled assumptions that black people are politically apathetic, our collective voting power is undeniable.

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The power of black people’s organizing, voices and votes have delivered historical elections for this country. We have used strategic grassroots organizing and voting to turn red states blue, as we did by unseating the Republican incumbent Ray Moore in Alabama. The brilliant campaign ran by Stacey Abrams was another example of the ways in which we can shake the table and serve as the impetus for political progress.

This power is recognized by politicians, but recognition is no longer enough. Relying on our vote without earning it and developing a strong plan to address systemic inequality is no longer enough.

Black women and people of color cannot afford to equate seeking accountability and strong policies with disloyalty. In fact, loyalty to our community requires us to demand the most from candidates seeking the highest office in the country. It is our duty to help them reckon with the ways they may have harmed us in the past. And it is our responsibility to demand a clear plan on how they will fight for us in the future. We deserve nothing less.

Despite obvious concerns, I remain hopeful about Harris. But more importantly, I am committed to helping ensure my community is no longer courted during election season and disregarded once the votes are cast. And that means challenging candidates I might otherwise want to protect – including Kamala Harris.

Shanita Hubbard is an adjunct professor of criminal justice at Northampton Community College in Pennsylvania.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:37 pm 
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Ali's Choice wrote:
Is Seneca now posting as 'Eldanielfire'?


No. We are politically very different. I also didn't type 'Interesting'


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:30 pm 
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Deadtigers wrote:
Speaking of the the two wars and the crashing economy, I wanted to address, the points FR and Fonz along with Fullback ace made.

If you take your mind to 2007, the Bush 2 Admin was the worse in history (until this one). 2 wars, ridiculous debt/deficit growth and a crashed economy. The country didn't care for foreign policy. It was get out of Iraq, end Afghanistan if possible, fix the economy and anything else was a bonus. US had strategic interest in Syria but it couldn't get involved in anything, the public had absolutely no appetite, maybe minus Iraq, they might have.


Allright then. President Obama and his administration should have shut the fudge up then and say nothing about war crimes or whatever else is going on in the world outside of "millions of people die, we don't give a shit". They publicly stated they would not accept any deal where Assad stayed. Assad's still there and the Obama administration accepted it.

The thing that makes me incredulous about Syria is that country was a drawn-out war basket case due to two main groups, one led by Saudi Arabia and one led by Iran (of which Syria is effectively a vassal). Obama, his western allies, called for Assad to be removed from power for war crimes, while at the same time giving Assad's main backer in the conflict a nuclear deal. Yes, the Saudis are evil people too in this conflict, but that doesn't mean you start trusting the Iranians who were spreading war crimes outside their borders as well. It's a completely indefensible decision. Anyone that has never read this, should. It's Obama's point guy on foreign affairs and the Iran deal who brags about how he manipulated the press into liking the deal. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/08/maga ... -guru.html

excerpt:

Quote:
Barack Obama is not a standard-issue liberal Democrat. He openly shares Rhodes’s contempt for the groupthink of the American foreign-policy establishment and its hangers-on in the press. Yet one problem with the new script that Obama and Rhodes have written is that the Blob may have finally caught on.

“He is a brilliant guy, but he has a real problem with what I call the assignment of bad faith,” one former senior official told me of the president. “He regards everyone on the other side at this point as being a bunch of bloodthirsty know-nothings from a different era who play by the old book. He hears arguments like, ‘We should be punching Iran in the nose on its shipments of arms, and do it publicly,’ or ‘We should sanction the crap out of them for their ballistic-missile test and tell them that if they do it again we’re going to do this or we’re going to do that,’ and he hears Dick Cheney in those arguments.”

Another official I spoke to put the same point more succinctly: “Clearly the world has disappointed him.” When I asked whether he believed that the Oval Office debate over Syria policy in 2012 — resulting in a decision not to support the uprising against Assad in any meaningful way — had been an honest and open one, he said that he had believed that it was, but has since changed his mind. “Instead of adjusting his policies to the reality, and adjusting his perception of reality to the changing realities on the ground, the conclusions he draws are exactly the same, no matter what the costs have been to our strategic interests,” he says. “In an odd way, he reminds me of Bush.” The comparison is a startling one — and yet, questions of tone aside, it is uncomfortably easy to see the similarities between the two men, American presidents who projected their own ideas of the good onto an indifferent world.

One of the few charter members of the Blob willing to speak on the record is Leon Panetta, who was Obama’s head of the C.I.A. and secretary of defense and also enough of a product of a different culture to give honest answers to what he understands to be questions of consequence. At his institute at the old Fort Ord in Seaside, Calif., where, in the days before he wore Mr. Rogers sweaters, he served as a young Army intelligence officer, I ask him about a crucial component of the administration’s public narrative on Iran: whether it was ever a salient feature of the C.I.A.’s analysis when he ran the agency that the Iranian regime was meaningfully divided between “hard-line” and “moderate” camps.

“No,” Panetta answers. “There was not much question that the Quds Force and the supreme leader ran that country with a strong arm, and there was not much question that this kind of opposing view could somehow gain any traction.”

I ask Panetta whether, as head of the C.I.A., or later on, as secretary of defense, he ever saw the letters that Obama covertly sent to Khamenei, in 2009 and in 2012, which were only reported on by the press weeks later.

“No,” he answers, before saying he would “like to believe” that Tom Donilon, national security adviser since 2010, and Hillary Clinton, then secretary of state, had a chance to work on the offer they presented.

As secretary of defense, he tells me, one of his most important jobs was keeping Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel and his defense minister, Ehud Barak, from launching a pre-emptive attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities. “They were both interested in the answer to the question, ‘Is the president serious?’ ” Panetta recalls. “And you know my view, talking with the president, was: If brought to the point where we had evidence that they’re developing an atomic weapon, I think the president is serious that he is not going to allow that to happen.”

Panetta stops.

“But would you make that same assessment now?” I ask him.

“Would I make that same assessment now?” he asks. “Probably not.”

He understands the president’s pivot toward Iran as the logical result of a deeply held premise about the negative effects of use of American military force on a scale much larger than drone strikes or Special Forces raids. “I think the whole legacy that he was working on was, ‘I’m the guy who’s going to bring these wars to an end, and the last goddamn thing I need is to start another war,’ ” he explains of Obama. “If you ratchet up sanctions, it could cause a war. If you start opposing their interest in Syria, well, that could start a war, too.”

In Panetta’s telling, his own experience at the Pentagon under Obama sometimes resembled being installed in the driver’s seat of a car and finding that the steering wheel and brakes had been disconnected from the engine. Obama and his aides used political elders like him, Robert Gates and Hillary Clinton as cover to end the Iraq war, and then decided to steer their own course, he suggests. While Panetta pointedly never mentions Rhodes’s name, it is clear whom he is talking about.

“There were staff people who put themselves in a position where they kind of assumed where the president’s head was on a particular issue, and they thought their job was not to go through this open process of having people present all these different options, but to try to force the process to where they thought the president wanted to be,” he says. “They’d say, ‘Well, this is where we want you to come out.’ And I’d say ‘[expletive], that’s not the way it works. We’ll present a plan, and then the president can make a decision.’ I mean, Jesus Christ, it is the president of the United States, you’re making some big decisions here, he ought to be entitled to hear all of those viewpoints and not to be driven down a certain path.”

But that can’t be true, I tell Panetta, because the aides he is talking about had no independent power aside from the authority that the president himself gave them.

“Well, that’s a good question,” Panetta allows. “He’s a smart guy, he’s not dumb.” It’s all part of the Washington blame game. Just as Panetta can blame young aides in order to avoid blaming the president for his actual choices, the president used his aides to tell Panetta to take a hike. Perhaps the president and his aides were continually unable to predict the consequences of their actions in Syria, and made mistake after mistake, while imagining that it was going to come out right the next time. “Another read, which isn’t necessarily opposed to that,” I continue, “is that their actual picture is entirely coherent. But if they put it in blunt, unnuanced terms — ”

Panetta completes my sentence: “ — they’d get the [expletive] kicked out of them.” He looks at me curiously. “Let me ask you something,” he says. “Did you present this theory to Ben Rhodes?”

“Oh, God,” Rhodes says. “The reason the president has bucked a lot of establishment thinking is because he does not agree with establishment thinking. Not because I or Denis McDonough are sitting here.” He pushes back in his chair. “The complete lack of governance in huge swaths of the Middle East, that is the project of the American establishment,” he declares. “That as much as Iraq is what angered me.”

There is something dangerously naïve about this kind of talk, in which words like “balance,” “stakeholders” and “interests” are endlessly reshuffled like word tiles in a magnetic-poetry set, with little regard for the immutable contingencies that shaped America’s role in the world. But that’s hardly fair. Ben Rhodes wanted to do right, and maybe, when the arc of history lands, it will turn out that he did. At least, he tried. Something scared him, and made him feel as if the grown-ups in Washington didn’t know what they were talking about, and it’s hard to argue that he was wrong.

What has interested me most about watching him and his cohort in the White House over the past seven years, I tell him, is the evolution of their ability to get comfortable with tragedy. I am thinking specifically about Syria, I add, where more than 450,000 people have been slaughtered.

“Yeah, I admit very much to that reality,” he says. “There’s a numbing element to Syria in particular. But I will tell you this,” he continues. “I profoundly do not believe that the United States could make things better in Syria by being there. And we have an evidentiary record of what happens when we’re there — nearly a decade in Iraq.”

Iraq is his one-word answer to any and all criticism. I was against the Iraq war from the beginning, I tell Rhodes, so I understand why he perpetually returns to it. I also understand why Obama pulled the plug on America’s engagement with the Middle East, I say, but it was also true as a result that more people are dying there on his watch than died during the Bush presidency, even if very few of them are Americans. What I don’t understand is why, if America is getting out of the Middle East, we are apparently spending so much time and energy trying to strong-arm Syrian rebels into surrendering to the dictator who murdered their families, or why it is so important for Iran to maintain its supply lines to Hezbollah. He mutters something about John Kerry, and then goes off the record, to suggest, in effect, that the world of the Sunni Arabs that the American establishment built has collapsed. The buck stops with the establishment, not with Obama, who was left to clean up their mess.


So we don't get involved in Syria, but we do in Libya. Why? Because the Europeans are worthless at handling their own affairs.

I agree with you the country didn't care for foreign policy. That's how absolute morons on geopolitics like Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump became president.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2019 5:47 pm 
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Well, it appears Trump was the shake-up needed to prove to the rest of Europe that they need not trust us so much, we may be a basket case ourselves. I think that may be the one positive.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2019 5:49 pm 
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Gabbard campaign in disarray.

https://www.politico.com/story/2019/01/ ... on-1134055


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2019 5:56 pm 
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Harris is doing well in the polls according to politico.

Pete Buttigieg, the mayor the third largest city, South Bend, in Indiana, had declared. It sounds laughable but Butty is liked by David Axelrod, Biden, and Howard Dean as one of the brilliant young minds in the party. Former consultant, Veteran, gay and mayor of a small town which he has helped get back on its feet. That last part is key, and may FR can address it more as an Indiana resident, but he has found a use for the old Studabacher plant in the city and all the abandoned homes. The City has had a resurgence. It will never recapture the golden days but it is at a place a lot small cities in the Midwest wouldn't mind being.


I really think he is another person who is using this to raise his profile and will make a great cabinet member.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2019 1:14 am 
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Flyin Ryan wrote:
I agree with you the country didn't care for foreign policy. That's how absolute morons on geopolitics like Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump became president.


Very true, I have just finished reading a biography of Herbert Walker Bush and my biggest takeaway was that there may never again be another candidate for the WH with a comparable foreign policy resume, or something even remotely close. Not only was he a WW2 pilot he was an ambassador to the UN, to China and head of the C.I.A. before he spent 8 years as the vice President. Every President since has virtually no foreign policy or military background to speak of which is a huge weakness.

In fact, HW Bush was probably the most qualified President imaginable in that he checks all the boxes. Blue blood family, well educated, served in the military, successful businessman, experience in Congress AND the Executive and in foreign affairs. He also dealt with some setbacks (getting shot down in WW2 and losing elections in 1964 and 1970) which gave him the character to persevere through hard times.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2019 1:41 am 
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The Rock wrote:
Flyin Ryan wrote:
I agree with you the country didn't care for foreign policy. That's how absolute morons on geopolitics like Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump became president.


Very true, I have just finished reading a biography of Herbert Walker Bush and my biggest takeaway was that there may never again be another candidate for the WH with a comparable foreign policy resume, or something even remotely close. Not only was he a WW2 pilot he was an ambassador to the UN, to China and head of the C.I.A. before he spent 8 years as the vice President. Every President since has virtually no foreign policy or military background to speak of which is a huge weakness.

In fact, HW Bush was probably the most qualified President imaginable in that he checks all the boxes. Blue blood family, well educated, served in the military, successful businessman, experience in Congress AND the Executive and in foreign affairs. He also dealt with some setbacks (getting shot down in WW2 and losing elections in 1964 and 1970) which gave him the character to persevere through hard times.


Blue blood family should not be considered any type of qualification for the presidency. Real world experience should be, though.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2019 1:44 am 
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eldanielfire wrote:
Ali's Choice wrote:
Is Seneca now posting as 'Eldanielfire'?


No. We are politically very different. I also didn't type 'Interesting'


santa was our "interesting" guy tbf not Sen.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2019 1:47 am 
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goeagles wrote:
The Rock wrote:
Flyin Ryan wrote:
I agree with you the country didn't care for foreign policy. That's how absolute morons on geopolitics like Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump became president.


Very true, I have just finished reading a biography of Herbert Walker Bush and my biggest takeaway was that there may never again be another candidate for the WH with a comparable foreign policy resume, or something even remotely close. Not only was he a WW2 pilot he was an ambassador to the UN, to China and head of the C.I.A. before he spent 8 years as the vice President. Every President since has virtually no foreign policy or military background to speak of which is a huge weakness.

In fact, HW Bush was probably the most qualified President imaginable in that he checks all the boxes. Blue blood family, well educated, served in the military, successful businessman, experience in Congress AND the Executive and in foreign affairs. He also dealt with some setbacks (getting shot down in WW2 and losing elections in 1964 and 1970) which gave him the character to persevere through hard times.


Blue blood family should not be considered any type of qualification for the presidency. Real world experience should be, though.


Yeah that's a weird comment. I see Hilldawg is apparently thinking of another run. As is Bernie. Those 2 need to just not do that for the love of Christ! Also, Kamala Harris seems to be the frontrunner at the moment for the coporate Dems.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2019 2:12 am 
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The Rock wrote:
In fact, HW Bush was probably the most qualified President imaginable in that he checks all the boxes. Blue blood family


:lol:

The best part is it’s listed first!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2019 2:30 am 
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Bowens wrote:
The Rock wrote:
In fact, HW Bush was probably the most qualified President imaginable in that he checks all the boxes. Blue blood family


:lol:

The best part is it’s listed first!


Joe Kennedy III is loving that part.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 2:39 am 
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goeagles wrote:
The Rock wrote:
Flyin Ryan wrote:
I agree with you the country didn't care for foreign policy. That's how absolute morons on geopolitics like Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump became president.


Very true, I have just finished reading a biography of Herbert Walker Bush and my biggest takeaway was that there may never again be another candidate for the WH with a comparable foreign policy resume, or something even remotely close. Not only was he a WW2 pilot he was an ambassador to the UN, to China and head of the C.I.A. before he spent 8 years as the vice President. Every President since has virtually no foreign policy or military background to speak of which is a huge weakness.

In fact, HW Bush was probably the most qualified President imaginable in that he checks all the boxes. Blue blood family, well educated, served in the military, successful businessman, experience in Congress AND the Executive and in foreign affairs. He also dealt with some setbacks (getting shot down in WW2 and losing elections in 1964 and 1970) which gave him the character to persevere through hard times.


Blue blood family should not be considered any type of qualification for the presidency. Real world experience should be, though.


In and of itself it should not be qualifier but in George Herbert Walker's case it was indicative of the fact that he was a gentleman who had been groomed for leadership since a young age, he had a noble bearing, he was Presidential. HW possessed unimpeachable character, he was a moderate and hard working person who was kind toward his adversaries, humble, charming when he needed to be and most importantly he understood that governance is only possible through compromise, take a bit from the left and a bit from the right.

One of the interesting tidbits of the biography is when after one of their summits Gorbachev asks for some help with regards to organization and HW sat him down and coached him up, gave him some pointers of how he could improve the organization of his desk, keep track of his appointments and so on. Another is how he found Maggie Thatcher's abrasive and combative nature tiresome - he was more of a conciliatory figure who preferred to get along with other people rather than make enemies of them. A characteristic that is perhaps in short supply in modern times.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 9:14 am 
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flaggETERNAL wrote:
Yeah that's a weird comment. I see Hilldawg is apparently thinking of another run. As is Bernie. Those 2 need to just not do that for the love of Christ! Also, Kamala Harris seems to be the frontrunner at the moment for the coporate Dems.



I see Kamala Harris has been getting a few hit pieces about her old tough on crime stance being blamed for high black jail numbers.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... ts-truancy

A position that always amuses me, surely high Jail numbers is largely due to high crime numbers. And high crime numbers is due to a toxic culture of poverty, low expectations, poor family cohesiveness and plenty of criminal influence. This SJW thinking that a minority goes to prison more is bad regardless of reality is mental.

While I'm a big believer that society doing more to change these toxic environments is the solution, it needs to be coupled with tough on crime stances and the removal of criminal elements from these environments.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 9:16 am 
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flaggETERNAL wrote:

Yeah that's a weird comment. I see Hilldawg is apparently thinking of another run. As is Bernie. Those 2 need to just not do that for the love of Christ! Also, Kamala Harris seems to be the frontrunner at the moment for the coporate Dems.


Hilary has been teasing running since she lost. She has shown some moments of understanding why she lost but then betrays the fact she fundamentally believes it was everybody else's fault. She still doesn't get it, she's the toxic one.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 9:28 am 
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The Rock wrote:
One of the interesting tidbits of the biography is when after one of their summits Gorbachev asks for some help with regards to organization and HW sat him down and coached him up, gave him some pointers of how he could improve the organization of his desk, keep track of his appointments and so on. Another is how he found Maggie Thatcher's abrasive and combative nature tiresome - he was more of a conciliatory figure who preferred to get along with other people rather than make enemies of them. A characteristic that is perhaps in short supply in modern times.



Very good points. What amplifies that issue I think is political groups, and supporters of political parties are also less and less willing to accept compromise or meet political differences with good nature. That makes it harder when political figures who do so because their support base collapses.

In the UK we see this a lot this past decade. A lot on the left say the want a PR systems of election. But that tends to go to coalition governments, but the first coalition government we had in years the left side of it abandoned their party the Lib Dems because of the compromises they made were just called betrayals and lies. And yet the general public still claim on principle they want politicians to grow up and discuss and meet in the middle.

This is perhaps where I feel for some politicians who want to work in conciliatory ways, they are getting two absolutely contradictory commands from the population. 1) We want to see a nicer, cooperative way of working where adults compromise and meet in the middle and 2) We don't want to give an inch to the other side either because we hate them and our political ideals are the only way forward.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 2:25 pm 
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Hillary isn't running. They seem to ask low level people that work for her and turn that into a story. I don't see it. I am also not sure Bernie is gonna run either. There are so many people in the "I am a progressive" side, it will be tough for him. I guess he can still play his parasite, sorry, outsider routine. But it I don't think breaking rules will be allowed this time.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 2:33 pm 
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eldanielfire wrote:
flaggETERNAL wrote:
Yeah that's a weird comment. I see Hilldawg is apparently thinking of another run. As is Bernie. Those 2 need to just not do that for the love of Christ! Also, Kamala Harris seems to be the frontrunner at the moment for the coporate Dems.



I see Kamala Harris has been getting a few hit pieces about her old tough on crime stance being blamed for high black jail numbers.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... ts-truancy

A position that always amuses me, surely high Jail numbers is largely due to high crime numbers. And high crime numbers is due to a toxic culture of poverty, low expectations, poor family cohesiveness and plenty of criminal influence. This SJW thinking that a minority goes to prison more is bad regardless of reality is mental.

While I'm a big believer that society doing more to change these toxic environments is the solution, it needs to be coupled with tough on crime stances and the removal of criminal elements from these environments.


Boy you love labels. SJW, Liberal elitist, April apparently you are the only who is clear headed. It might help you to realize in the US, the party is a three legged stool and dismissing one of it and promoting the other leg as the end all be all is unhealthy.

Every person running will have to explain an unsavory part of their political history. She is a former DA, so some her decisions will be questioned. It is tough to be a reformer and progressive if as the DA, your policy didn't show this. She will need a good explanation that pleases most people. It won't satisfy all but should be something she can be able to stand on.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 2:46 pm 
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Here's some advice from the coffee man as you lot try to figure out which platforms to run on in 2020:
Quote:
Indeed, the neosocialist turn national Democrats have taken is precisely why Schultz decided to run as an independent. He calculated that he could not win the Democratic nomination running as a conventional, centrist Democrat. "I no longer feel affiliated [with the Democrats] because I don't know their views represent the majority of Americans," he says.

Schultz is right. In fact, a recent Pew Research poll found that 53 percent of Democrats want the party to move in a more moderate direction, not embrace the radical policies of Ocasio-Cortez. That is precisely what the party needs to do if it wants to beat President Trump. Democrats should be trying to win back the millions of once-reliable Democratic voters who twice cast their ballots for Barack Obama but switched to Trump in 2016.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 3:02 pm 
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One problem the Democrats may have with their leftward shift is that it’s ultimately impossible to please the far left. There’ll always be a marginalised group or a new grievance that they need to iron out before they can archieve purity. Trying to pander to every grievance will fudge them. On the other hand, good centrist policies that put more money in your pocket and more food on the table is what should win. Fingers crossed.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 3:18 pm 
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Deadtigers wrote:

Boy you love labels. SJW, Liberal elitist, April apparently you are the only who is clear headed. It might help you to realize in the US, the party is a three legged stool and dismissing one of it and promoting the other leg as the end all be all is unhealthy.


My SJW comment was directed at the author of the piece I referenced because that is exactly the sort of politics they are displaying and are pretty relevant in mainstream left leaning politics recently. I have a bone with it because such groups do write unbalanced and very selective hit pieces of influence quite often in mainstream press for example the regular labelling of centralists, classic liberals or anyone who doesn't fit the typical SJW narrative as 'Alt Right'. Heck it wasn't even directed at anyone in the US. I'm sorry you don't like the labels unless they are "racist" or "believing the republican narrative" like you do.

Quote:
Every person running will have to explain an unsavory part of their political history. She is a former DA, so some her decisions will be questioned. It is tough to be a reformer and progressive if as the DA, your policy didn't show this. She will need a good explanation that pleases most people. It won't satisfy all but should be something she can be able to stand on.


That's fine, but considering the selected 'Guardian pick' comment actually points out that the comment piece wasn't fair and presents Harris' past very selectively ignoring many of the stages of support the whole process. Which was my criticism and it as well. Hence it reads like hit piece like the other articles read that leaves out certain details to lay one sided criticisms of her.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 3:21 pm 
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Man In Black wrote:
One problem the Democrats may have with their leftward shift is that it’s ultimately impossible to please the far left. There’ll always be a marginalised group or a new grievance that they need to iron out before they can archieve purity. Trying to pander to every grievance will fudge them. On the other hand, good centrist policies that put more money in your pocket and more food on the table is what should win. Fingers crossed.


Indeed. Hence the term "The left eat their own". IMO it works to go for a good centralised-left leaning base pointing out the good left leaning policies that are good for people. Like what Obama did in his first run at President in 2007/2008 or early New Labour. Don't be afraid of republicans moronically trying to claim these policies don't work as if free health care is killing all the countries that host it.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 4:16 pm 
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These polls feel like the polls that come out and show the public hate negative ads but then they are successful.

I mean wasn't part of the attack on HRC was she was too centrist and Bernie was really about moving the party left and about change. Now according to this poll, centrist are wanted, I mean come on!


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