Reality Comes and Brings the End for Bernie Sanders 2020

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Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonderandhome.com

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166 Responses

  1. Avatar Philip H says:

    I say its a disgusting disgrace that the Democratic Party has so sold its soul to the big money business community that a neoliberal centerist is the best they will allow us to do. He may be a shade or two better then the current semi-literate cheeto but not by enough to matter.

    The Democratic Party has handed the WH to the current occupant for 4 more years, if he’s smart enough not to screw up his prospects any further.Report

    • Avatar greginak in reply to Philip H says:

      Well i guess this is the convo for next month. Any generic D is far better then the trump. Far better. To many people, D’s especially, have focused to much on the prez. Sure it’s important. But there are judges and admin positions that do a lot. R’s have done their standard job giving the enviro to polluters. Trump has gone almost to the brink of war with iran. Do you think bernie likes that? Did he prefer Obama’s dealing with Iran and better protections for the enviro or the judges he appointed. Just naming a couple things Biden will be better on then trump. That is leaving aside the staggering corruption under trump.

      Nonsense. The election is toss upish and that probably wont’ change for a while or ever.Report

      • Avatar Philip H in reply to greginak says:

        The problem with your analysis is a lot of middle of the road folks who supported Mr. Obama took a look at Hillary and voted for Trump in no small measure because they looked at Obama’s policies – concluded Hillary would perpetuate them – and noted they didn’t see their very real needs in those policies and positions. Joe Biden doesn’t really represent enough of a pivot away from those policies to move that needle.Report

        • Avatar J_A in reply to Philip H says:

          The problem with your analysis is is a lot of middle of the road folks who supported Mr. Obama took a look at Hillary and voted for Trump in no small measure because they looked at Obama’s policies – concluded Hillary would perpetuate them – and noted they didn’t see their very real needs in those policies and positions. Joe Biden doesn’t really represent enough of a pivot away from those policies to move that needle.

          The problem with your analysis, @Philip_H, is that it assumes that those Obama to Trump voters (which exist)are satisfied with the Trump presidency enough to vote for four more years of it.

          There is little in the Trump presidency that reflects any positive change from the Obama policies from the point of view of an Obama-to-Trump voter: health care is not more accessible, but less, infrastructure is not being built, inequality has increased, corruption is rampant, the wars continue, and are at the risk of increasing (see Iran), the USA is less respected in the world scene. Hey, even the coal mines continue closing. And Trump’s bigger domestic triumph, the tax cut, definitely didn’t impact the Obama to Trump voters in any meaningful way. Large corporations did not reinvest their tax cuts in new manufacturing but in distributions to shareholders.

          The thing that Trump has offered to his base, including the Obama to Trump voters, is a lot cultural symbolism: children in cages, pardoning war criminals, bullying and insulting, etc.

          If the Obama to Trump voters were looking for policies, Trump hasn’t delivered those, and, if anything, their actual situation is worse than in the Obama era, and a vote for Biden represents going back to the better-off Obama years.

          If, on the contrary, the Obama to Trump voters moved because they were drawn to the cultural message, then, yes, they will stick with Trump.

          But then, let’s all be clear, it has nothing to do with policiesReport

          • Avatar DensityDuck in reply to J_A says:

            “The thing that Trump has offered to his base, including the Obama to Trump voters, is a lot cultural symbolism: children in cages, pardoning war criminals, bullying and insulting, etc.”

            and your response to that is to nominate bland white mush?

            “this is the most hated president in history! we should take this opportunity to nominate someone who won’t change a goddamn thing.

            you people are wimps who’ll get stomped, and you deserve it.Report

            • Avatar J_A in reply to DensityDuck says:

              Your comment doesn’t make much sense to me

              If Obama to Trump voters (which are the ones under discussion here) prefer Trump because of his message about minorities, women, liberals, the swamp, the lamestream media, etc., as opposed to liking his actual policies, like gutting the ACA, tax cuts for corporations, deficits, and war with Iran, then why would they abandon Trump for a candidate that is not a white, Christian, straight, man ?

              Observe that except Bloomberg, Steyer, or Biden, all mayor candidates, even Tulsi, weren’t able to tick the four boxes.Report

              • Avatar DensityDuck in reply to J_A says:

                “Your comment doesn’t make much sense to me”

                This was the moment to pick the guy who would actually fix the things you’re going to attack Trump with.

                You, apparently, do not want that guy. You’re telling voters that when it comes down to it, what you really, deeply care about, more than anything else, is not electing Bernie Sanders.Report

            • Avatar Philip H in reply to DensityDuck says:

              I’ve been saying this from the left for a long time but no one seems to listenReport

    • Avatar LeeEsq in reply to Philip H says:

      The Democratic voters who helped Biden win the nomination are working and lower middle class African-Americans combined with suburban white women. They are many things but not people who sold their soul to the big money business community.Report

    • Avatar Brandon Berg in reply to Philip H says:

      I say its a disgusting disgrace that the Democratic Party has so sold its soul to the big money business community that a neoliberal centerist is the best they will allow us to do.

      You really need to adjust the intensity of your opinions to match the depth of your understanding of the issues.Report

      • Avatar Philip H in reply to Brandon Berg says:

        both are in equal alignment thanks very much. Joe Biden won’t get the Trump to Obama crowd back to the D side, nor will he inspire the 45% who didn’t vote last time to go pull the proverbial lever this time. The DNC – which is way more responsive to big money corporate donors then actual voters – bears the lion’s share of that blame and most especially so because they have been chasing big money corporate donations since Clinton.

        We now have a centerist candidate competing against a far right candidate in a nation with firm left issues/problems.Report

        • Avatar Brandon Berg in reply to Philip H says:

          Biden was slightly more moderate in his first term, but from 1981 to 2009, his voting record in the Senate consistently placed him not in the center of the spectrum, but around the 75th-80th percentile, which made him about average, or slightly left of average, for Democratic Senators. He’s not a socialist, but there’s quite a lot of space between socialist and centrist.

          That aside, I was referring less to your assessment of where Biden sits on the political spectrum than to your notion that not fully embracing Sanders’ agenda proves that the Democratic Party has “sold its soul to the big money business community.” That’s some high school sophomore shit.

          I get that you really feel like you understand the issues, but pretty much every comment you make about economic policy makes it clear that you don’t. It’s okay not to understand these issues. I bet you know a lot more about marine biology than I do. But I don’t really have any strong opinions about marine biology, because I know that I haven’t put in the work to understand it.

          Of course, not many people are tempted to have strong opinions about marine biology. But I also know that I don’t know much about foreign policy. You won’t catch me pontificating about foreign policy here or anywhere else, and in the rare cases where I do express an opinion, I will make it clear that it’s speculative and that I don’t really have a good handle on the topic. It’s important for us to know and respect our epistemic limitations.Report

          • Avatar Philip H in reply to Brandon Berg says:

            so what don’t you think I understand? Because absent a clear set of you got this wrong statements – supported with data – you’re just making really polite ad hominem attacks.Report

            • Avatar JS in reply to Philip H says:

              Well, for starters — Biden won on the votes of blue-collar white workers and blacks.

              Which seems hardly..”big money business community”

              Now I understand the common rejoinder to that point is something like “low information voters” but just in case you’re tempted to try — and I really cannot fathom you would, but just in case — I’d like to point out black voters are really familiar with being called ‘low information voters’, generally right before they’re called “welfare queens” and complaints about Obamaphones.Report

              • Avatar Philip H in reply to JS says:

                He was making statements that I don’t understand economics . . . for which I was an am still waiting for specific examples . . . and disagreements about outcomes of policies aren’t a lack of understanding . . .

                I know who voted for Biden, but he’s in the race in no small measure because Democratic political operations nationally – including the DNC – are funded by corporate interests (same as the RNC FWIW). Tos interests have aligned with the DNC since Clinto, in large part becaus ethe DNC has put forward and supported candidates who govern from a corporations first, neoliberal economic perspective.

                Now, I also get that a LOT of voters in this country are scared, a lot are feeling left behind, and a lot of them didn’t see in Bernie or Warren or Harris someone who would help them. That’s in part on the candidates, but its also on the national political organizations. Had the DNC actually learned any lessons from 2016 they would have told Joe to sit it out, that the Democrats salvation isn’t from a more comfortable version the same old same old, and the DNC would have put resources behind someone else. People voted for the familiar because they were not really given the choice not to, not because they are uninformed or low information. They simply got steered in a certain direction, and my beef is with those who steered – they have likely handed Trump another 4 years in the WH.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Philip H says:

                You really want the DNC to do that, have that heavy a hand in preselecting which candidates we are allowed to vote for?

                Why, or how would this lead to a better outcome for the party, or for America?Report

              • Avatar North in reply to Philip H says:

                You really don’t understand how the Democratic nomination process works. The DNC has nowhere near that kind of power; not even in that universe of power; to promote a candidate or to keep one from running.Report

              • Avatar Philip H in reply to North says:

                I grew up in Louisiana – power politics has been the bread and butter of my life. Yeah the DNC has that kind of power in as much as they aggregate funds. Had anyone in the DNC told Uncle Joe to sit down because he wouldn’t get their support he would have.

                And Chip -my contention is they already have. which is why we are where we are.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Philip H says:

                “Preselecting” 21 candidates for us to choose from provokes the Inigo Montoya response.Report

              • Avatar JS in reply to Philip H says:

                Oh well, if you grew up in Louisiana you can’t possibly be wrong about this. Now onto the next hilarious bit:

                “Yeah the DNC has that kind of power in as much as they aggregate funds”

                How’d they aggregate funds, and to which candidates, and how did that affect the primary? DO TELL.Report

              • Avatar JS in reply to Philip H says:

                “Had the DNC actually learned any lessons from 2016 they would have told Joe to sit it out,”

                Well first, it’s hilarious you think the DNC has any sort of power like that at all.

                Secondly, it’s funny you seem to want the DNC to be able to tell candidates whether they can run or not despite having a dark view that the DNC somehow “meddled” or “messed up” in 2016.

                Third, you’re again claiming Biden is — somehow — big corporate money despite his support coming from actual voters who are the opposite of big corporate money.

                It seems mostly that you’re super angry about who won, so you’re just sort of throwing buzzwords and vague allusions to “big money” around as an explanation because “He got the most votes” is somehow not a working explanation to you.Report

              • Avatar Philip H in reply to JS says:

                he got the most votes because a number of organizations including the DNC positioned him to get the most votes. Where those organizations came to that place independently is not the point. Biden’s economic policies are the point – in as much as they won’t solve the issues that drive voters to the polls. He is and has been for 30 years a neoliberal economically, which means he supports economic approaches that support corporations preferentially. As did Hillary Clinton, and as did Obama.

                Many of the D’s who voted for him see that, and saw the stories being spun about the other candidates and concluded his approach wasn’t as radical a change as theirs was alleged to be. It doesn’t mean Biden is the answer to beat trump; it doesn’t mean he will support labor over corporations when making policy and it doesn’t mean he will motive the base (much less the 45% of non-voters) to actually pull the lever.

                And if you want to call me angry – fine. I’m happy to be angry. All of you should be too.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Philip H says:

                Its like you think there is some huge, latent untapped pool of voters, who would have surged to the polls were it not for “a number of organizations including the DNC .”

                What are you seeing to make you think this would have happened?Report

              • Avatar Philip H in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                45 % of voter sat the last election out. There’s been a lot of reporting on why since then, and many of them said they didn’t see their vote counting as well as they didn’t see solutions to their needs in either candidate. When you look at where those folks are – a lots of them are or were in states that went democratic, or in the mid west and rust belt, which we all know got less attention from HRC then they should have due an assumption they would simply vote for her. Add in the fact that a good number of them also suffer from active voter suppression campaigns and there you go.

                Will any candidate get all 45% off the sidelines? Doubtful. But the right candidate could get 10% off the sidelines, and thats what D’s need to get past the 27% who are set for the President.Report

              • Avatar JS in reply to Philip H says:

                “45 % of voter sat the last election out”

                So?

                2016: 55% turnout.
                2012: 54.9%
                2008: 58%
                2004: 55.7%
                2000: 50.4%
                1996: 49%

                1964 and 1968 are the most “modern” elections that broke 60%. You have to go back to 1912 to find elections that routinely saw 65% plus turnout.

                I’m not sure what “all the reporting” was about beyond “Yep, about 55% of the eligible voters voted, just like has been the case since 1972”.Report

              • Avatar North in reply to Philip H says:

                *shrug* that 10% of non-voters to voters would have, had they shown up, easily turned the primary election into a Bernie romp to victory. Despite his claims and calls to the contrary the voters didn’t show up. The DNC didn’t hatch a nefarious scheme to keep them from showing up- they just didn’t show.Report

              • Avatar JS in reply to Philip H says:

                “because a number of organizations including the DNC positioned him to get the most votes”

                How?

                I mean normally when spinning a conspiracy theory you need the actual theory part to.

                Frankly, this seems like a lot of handwaving to cover the fact that Biden got the most votes, you dislike that, but aren’t yet ready just to call everyone else “fools and idiots”.

                “All of you should be too.”

                Why? Dude with the most votes won. That’s how elections work. What am I supposed to be angry about?Report

    • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Philip H says:

      Well, there truly is a first for everything. Philip, I agree with you almost entirely. I don’t much like Bernie or think he’d win, but at least he would have been a clear contrast to Trump and we could have finally settled the argument of whether 2016 would have gone differently if Dems had gone big and bold. Frankly, if he did win, I do think he’d make a better President than mushy old flip-flop Joe (who tacked too far left this time to be called “Centrist” in terms of policy, but I kinda doubt he actually has the backbone to stand fast on those positions once in office rather than trade them away for any compromise he can call “bipartisan”), not that “better than Joe Biden” is a particularly high bar to clear these days.Report

      • Avatar Philip H in reply to Urusigh says:

        Obama ran as a progressive the first time and then spent 8 years governing form the center – which among other things is how we got the GOP voting in the House 72 times to can off the ACA – which was their own idea originally.

        Biden isn’t even doing a good job of pretending to tack left.Report

        • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Philip H says:

          No, Obama ran as centrist the first time and then spent the rest of his time in office tacking Left as far as he could get (which wasn’t far once Reps took the House, but he certainly tried and his executive actions sure as hell weren’t “Centrist”). He just tended to lie about it, such as the canard you just repeated: the ACA was NOT originally a Republican idea. Romneycare didn’t even survive in Utah, which is hardly a state representative of the national Republican Party, There WAS a Republican bill in the Senate that looked a whole lot like Obamacare in 1993, but it wasn’t the only GOP bill on Capitol Hill, it never came to a vote, and plenty of conservative Republicans didn’t like it, because it itself was regarded as an unacceptable compromise that borrowed too much from the competing Democrat proposal. So, let’s summarize: Republicans drafted a plan that included some Democrat priorities as a compromise to give it a chance of passing as “bipartisan”, less compromise-minded Republicans killed it without even a vote, then Obama and the rest of you spend ever after claiming that Democrats including in their own plan policies that Republicans borrowed from Democrats in the first place (and then rejected) somehow makes a wholly Democrat plan “bipartisan”.

          “Biden isn’t even doing a good job of pretending to tack left”

          Biden isn’t doing a ‘good’ job of anything, but his current policy platform would still be the most radically Left to win The Office in the past few decades.Report

          • Avatar Philip H in reply to Urusigh says:

            “Romneycare” was implemented in Massachusetts while he was governor there and still is considered a wild success. I get that him now representing Utah makes it tough to keep up but still.

            And all the ideas in the ACA that Republican politicians now claim to hate were written in policy proposals by the Heritage Foundation in 1996, including the much maligned individual mandate. Once proposed Mr. Obama and Democratic hill leadership spent 13 months meeting with Republicans on the issue, and Senate Democrats allowed and supported dozens of republican amendments to the bill to make it even more palatable to Republicans – who then voted against enmasse and tried to sink it there after. But what was passed and signed into law was in no was leftist nor radical.

            As to the rets of Mr. Obama’s record – what the hell is lefty about it? He authored the permanency of the GW Bush 9/11 tax cut – because you know Democrats are inveterate tax cutters; he got the personal liberty infringing Patriot Acct renewed and made warrantless wiretapping legal; he deported more undocumented migrant workers then any of his predecessors; and his major recession busting stimulus achievement was more tax cuts. If that’s what constitutes left wing madness as opposed to centerism, then boy is America in deep dodo.Report

            • Avatar Brandon Berg in reply to Philip H says:

              He authored the permanency of the GW Bush 9/11 tax cut

              It would be charitable to call this a half-truth. Most of the middle- and lower-class tax cuts were kept, but the estate tax was restored to a level of 40%. This is moderately lower than it was in 2000, but it was scheduled to be phased out entirely under the Bush tax cuts. The top tax rate on long-term capital gains and dividends was raised from 15% to 23.8% (20% plus a 3.8% surtax), which is higher than the 20% capital gains rate in 2000, although the treatment of dividends as long-term investment income was retained.

              Under Obama, taxes on the rich increased dramatically, while subsidization of the lower and middle classes also increased moderately. And he made this happen despite a Republican Congress. During his first two years, when he had a Democratic Congress, he passed a huge new spending program. He was not nearly as awful on economics as his 2008 fanboys wanted him to be, but he governed as a Democrat, not a centrist.Report

            • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Philip H says:

              “And all the ideas in the ACA that Republican politicians now claim to hate were written in policy proposals by the Heritage Foundation in 1996, including the much maligned individual mandate”

              Name which ones were ever brought to the floor, voted on, and received a majority of the Republican votes. By your logic UBI is a Republican proposal, but I doubt you’d call Yang a right-winger. There is a clear distinction between “A thing that got floated as an idea once upon a time” and “something that actually received the backing of the majority of the party”.

              “But what was passed and signed into law was in no was leftist nor radical”

              It is undeniably to the Left of where we were, significantly so, which makes it by definition neither centrist nor right, “Left” is the only possibility that remains and given that it was and is of highly dubious Constitutionality, “radical” is a given.

              Brandon Berg already shot you down on the tax cut, warrant-less wiretaps and overseas assassinations aren’t even a right-left issue, that’s going the wrong way on the libertarian-authoritarian axis, his deportation numbers are manipulated and contradicted by the multiple statements and policies he pushed to draw and shelter illegals (Again, even he admitted that he lacked the authority for DACA, yet did it anyway), and his major contribution to the stimulus was massive government deficit spending on social welfare, which is about as Lefty on economics as you can get without going full FDR. What he could get past a recalcitrant Republican House isn’t the measure of his politics anymore than you would call Trump “centrist” simply because House Dems are frustrating his agenda.Report

              • Avatar Philip H in reply to Urusigh says:

                Preserving the private insurance industry – which the ACA very much does – is not a left of center political or economic idea. The Individual mandate is indeed a heritage foundation idea – no less the Newt Gingrich said so (https://www.forbes.com/sites/theapothecary/2011/10/20/how-a-conservative-think-tank-invented-the-individual-mandate/#1947d4696187); and the “liberal left rag” The Wall street Journal found that every one of the Heritage Foundation’s ideas in health insurance reform were incorporated into the ACA (https://www.wsj.com/articles/heritage-rewrites-history-1383157826). But sure, keep claiming its all a left wing socialist plot. And there’s this as well: https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2010/apr/01/barack-obama/obama-says-heritage-foundation-source-health-excha/

                Your characterization of his stimulus package is wrong factually too – the largest portion was a temporary (and now long gone) payroll tax reduction – meaning funding for those “socialist programs” of social security, medicare and medicaid. Again hardly lefty . . . . He also spent much less money on short term unemployment insurance increases and the often maligned shovel ready construction projects. If that tax cut and the insurance spending are lefty so is the massive amount just passed by a Republican Senate and signed by a Republican president to keep the economy from tanking.

                But sure, Obama was a raging socialist and so Biden will be as well.Report

              • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Philip H says:

                “Preserving the private insurance industry – which the ACA very much does”

                Calling it “private” while the federal government sets what plans are available, what benefits they offer, what they can charge, who can get them, and then pays such a chunk of the now otherwise ruinous costs that those insurers literally have no other viable business plan… yeah, that’s about as “private” as the Soviet Union.

                “If that tax cut and the insurance spending are lefty so is the massive amount just passed by a Republican Senate and signed by a Republican president to keep the economy from tanking.”

                Tax cuts aren’t, but if you intend to claim that those originated on Dem’s side of the aisle I want to see your sources. And yes, I consider much of the recent relief package socialist. I’ve already said previously here that it’s another lousy pork barrel bill and I don’t approve of it. It wouldn’t have gotten enough Democrat votes to pass any other way. That’s the problem with not having a supermajority: nothing passes without making concessions to the other side.Report

              • Avatar Philip H in reply to Urusigh says:

                Calling it “private” while the federal government sets what plans are available, what benefits they offer, what they can charge, who can get them, and then pays such a chunk of the now otherwise ruinous costs that those insurers literally have no other viable business plan… yeah, that’s about as “private” as the Soviet Union.

                Bluecross is not a public sector entity. Kaiser Permanente is not a public sector entity. United Healthcare is not apublic sector entity. They may be not for profit, but the vast majority of Americans who have healthcare coverage of some kind get it through private entities not the government. The ACA did not change that – and its individual mandates drove more people to purchase the products of those private entities.

                As to the current stimulus package – No I don’t think the tax cuts arose from the democratic side of the aisle. I was merely pointing out that the use of tax cuts for stimulus was in fact a republican approach, and so dinging Obama for deficit spending on taxcuts was disingenuous since republicans under Mr. Obama’s succcessor just did a similar thing.

                I am amused to hear a conservative call what the President just signed socialism since it contains $500Bn for business relief controlled by the Secretary of the Treasury . . . .Report

              • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Philip H says:

                You and I clearly aren’t going to agree on the definition of “private”. You seem to think it’s just some version of “who’s name is on the ownership papers” whereas I define it more as “who actually gets to make the decisions about how the company is run, who it hires, what products it offers, and at what price”, e.g. actual decision-making power. Obamacare moved control of “what product is offered”, “to who”, “at what price” pretty much out of company hands and into the legislators’ hands. They even tried to control who the customers are, both through the mandate and the subsidies. There’s nothing “Free market” about the federal government controlling the entire trinity of product, payment, and customer. That is NOT what the Heritage proposals called for (according to even your own links). It didn’t merely add people to the customer base as you imply, it drastically reshaped who is in those markets and what they get out of them. A point of personal example from my family: the rapid rise in premiums and inability to qualify for the subsidies drove my own Mother off her insurance, the corresponding need to cut costs forced my medically-fragile sibling’s provider to narrow their network, excluding specialists who had been treating them for years, and my grandmother who had skin cancer was flat out forced off of treatment and onto “palliative care” to die in excruciating pain. To say that I am NOT a fan of Obamacare’s “changes” is an understatement. It was and is bad policy that made things worse, not better, by de facto nationalizing those companies (even if not de jure).

                “and so dinging Obama for deficit spending on taxcuts was disingenuous”

                I didn’t. I ding Obama on many things, but tax cuts that he did not propose, did not support, and could not avoid is not among them, but since they weren’t his in any sense, neither will I let you credit them to him as an example of him being centrist.

                “I am amused…”

                Shrug, He said upfront that he would sign literally anything put in front of him that provided aid. That’s not right, left, or center of him, it’s a fishing abdication of his responsibility to lead… Just because I support Trump doesn’t mean that I agree with every single thing he does or doesn’t do. I REALLY hate omnibus spending bills because instead of both sides cutting each other’s attempts at pork, you just get both sides bribing the other with pork. So yes, there’s plenty of socialism in there, plenty of crony corporatism, plenty of individual little pet priorities, and also a few good ideas buried in the slime and slush. Don’t expect me to defend that monstrosity and certainly don’t expect me to call it “Conservative” in whole or part.Report

  2. Avatar Jaybird says:

    Elizabeth Warren comments:

    Come for the tweet. STAY FOR THE REPLIES.Report

    • Avatar Zac Black in reply to Jaybird says:

      Well lookit that, she finally endorsed him.Report

      • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Zac Black says:

        Did she?Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to Zac Black says:

        If you can’t get inspired by not having kids locked up in cages, protecting and expanding the ACA, having a Judiciary that is not filled with right-wing firebrands, competent and noncorrupt administration, I don’t know what to tell you. Politics involves compromise. Even if Bernie won the Presidency and Democrats took control of both houses of Congress, there would be compromise and things would get watered down. There is no utopia, there is only a constant striving to make things more equal and fair. Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Heightening the contradictions only leads to suffering, nothing else.Report

        • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Saul Degraw says:

          The “kids locked up in cages” thing might be worth not bringing up. Those pictures were from 2015.

          Politics involves compromise.

          Hillary talked about how this means that we have to expand the exchanges rather than institute something like Medicare-For-All.

          Politics involves compromise.

          Hey, remember the #MeToo thing?

          Politics involves compromise.

          How many of the things that you care about are you refusing to compromise on while, at the same time, you’re asking me to compromise about the things I care about?

          Politics involves compromise.Report

          • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Jaybird says:

            Biden can hit Trump on caging kids, but it will mean *ignoring* the predictable response and doubling down on Trump’s depravity. “Hey you jacketty splat, that’s bullshit, you wanna go outside, ya nokey tuk?” (Think of it as a test: will the Dem candidate turn into squirmy mush in the face of a direct challenge or will that candidate stand up and fight, ya nacky span.) There is probably nothing Biden can go negative on which the right won’t throw back in his face. He either breaks through the crushing weight of his own (and Obama’s and the Dems’) imperfections to articulate a New Vision For America, or his candidacy dies slowly from the political equivalent of being suffocated by a small 800-fill power goose down pillow.Report

            • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Stillwater says:

              I suppose Biden can, but I don’t think the whole “I am voting for Biden because he is the *ONLY* *MORAL* *CHOICE*!” line of argumentation holds up under scrutiny.

              It certainly isn’t a good starting point when your goal is “Politics involves compromise”.

              I mean, Jesus. If your goal is to get people to understand that “Politics involves compromise”, open with making them a goddamn offer! Not “OH, YOU’RE OKAY WITH CHILDREN IN CAGES I GUESS”.

              Because, at the end of the day, if you vote for Biden…

              Ah, well. Maybe it doesn’t matter.

              Politics involves compromise, after all.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird says:

                I don’t think it is difficult at all to hold up Biden and Trump as radically different conceptions of racial tolerance and justice for immigrants and asylum seekers.

                And in any discussion of human rights and equality, “compromise” seems like a bizarre word to introduce.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                And in any discussion of human rights and equality, “compromise” seems like a bizarre word to introduce.

                Kinda makes you wonder at the mindset of people who *WOULD* introduce it, then, huh?Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird says:

                Or alternatively, we can note that none of the major players in our politics IS introducing it.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                I guess it’s kinda weird that someone even down at our own little league game would bring the whole “Politics involves compromise” into the conversation in the first place, huh?Report

              • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                “I don’t think it is difficult at all to hold up Biden and Trump as radically different conceptions of racial tolerance and justice for immigrants and asylum seekers.”

                I think it’s a lot more difficult when the people doing it rely almost entirely on an example that also took place under Obama’s terms while Biden is basically running as a third Obama term. It’s hard to credibly say “I’m against kids in cages!” when he was literally the Vice-President while it was happening and AFAIK he didn’t say a peep about it then.

                I agree entirely that it shouldn’t be hard, but if it’s not difficult at all, why do so many of his supporters seem to have such a difficult time actually doing it?Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Urusigh says:

                I agree entirely that it shouldn’t be hard, but if it’s not difficult at all, why do so many of his supporters seem to have such a difficult time actually doing it?

                This.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Urusigh says:

                I wonder if it works in the other direction;

                Like a guy who fervently listens to Lou Dobbs and Tucker Carlson and believes that immigration poses a mortal threat to American culture, would he shrug and say “Yeah, Joe Biden also put kids in cages, so I guess he’s as good a choice as Trump!”Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                I wonder if it works in the other direction;

                Chip, one thing we’ve learned is that conservatives play by a different set of rules than liberals do. Here’s something true: conservatives defend Trump and contrast him with Democrats regardless of what he’s actually done and often despite the fact that he’s done the exact opposite.

                Why does it matter what conservatives do or can get away with? They’re not trying to elect Joe Biden.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                “Yeah, Joe Biden also put kids in cages, so I guess he’s as good a choice as Trump!”

                While I’d phrase it differently, I’d appeal to something like that. Here’s a mini-speech that I think would work.

                “Now, folks. The last four years have been crazy. Don’t you want to put all that behind us? And don’t worry about the stuff you’ve heard the ‘woke’ kids talk about. If you vote for me, I’m not going to abolish ICE. We’re still going to enforce the laws that are on the books. You don’t have to worry about me doing something radical or crazy on gun control or instituting some sort of crazy European Socialized Medicine program. Obamacare was pretty good! We’re just going to make it better. And that’s what you’re going to get when you vote for me. Stuff you had before Trump. We’re just going to make it better. BIDEN: MAKE IT BETTER.”

                There. That’s the speech I’d put forward for him.

                And the whiny pissbabies who care about shit like “children in cages” can learn that, hey, sometimes you’ve just got to compromise.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Jaybird says:

                {{The Democrats squandered a real political advantage when they reduced the child separation policy to “putting kids in cages” since the truly abhorent, morally repulsive part of Trump’s policy was the permanent separation of kids from their parents. The kidnapping part was just monstrously grotesque. }}Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Stillwater says:

                To the point where, if I believed in conspiracies, I’d believe that the photos of 2015 were leaked by Trump’s team.

                I know that nobody is that good at this crap, of course, and it was just an example of goldfish memory on the part of the media.

                But if I believed in conspiracies, I’d boggle at how effectively the most biting of criticisms of Trump were embraced by Trump’s most vicious enemies for a year or so before Biden got nominated.

                And how “THIS IS A POINT OF PRINCIPLE!” pivots, overnight, to “well, you have to understand…”Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird says:

                Honestly I’m cool with a Biden speech like that.

                Of course, I can still see BIDEN IS IN FAVOR OF OPEN BORDERS AND SHARIA LAW attacks, but thats because I remember the Obama years.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Sure. You’re going to see people attacking Biden both for being way too left and way too right.

                But there are three groups of voters.

                I think that Biden will have a (minor) issue where he will have to shore up his support of the left. He’ll have to make some acknowledgments of some realities and talk about how some of the things they want are doable and he’s the guy to do them.

                And he’s going to have to talk to the swayables about how they shouldn’t have to worry about the other stuff his base wants because, hey, he knows that what they want is a return to sanity.

                And not have a health incident. He needs to not have a health incident.Report

              • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Jaybird says:

                Congrats, you just wrote a better campaign in one paragraph than any I’ve seen in the last year. You even nailed the alliteration to make it stick in memory.

                Of course, I’m still hoping his tone-deaf campaign advisors settle on “Biden: Our Time” unironically, just because there’s no more accurate way to sum up his case as a designated Placeholder and the memes would be hilarious.Report

              • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                “I wonder if it works in the other direction;”

                It did once before. Remember when Obama was “Deporter-in-Chief” during his 2012 reelection bid? It wouldn’t surprise me much if in the general Biden ran targeted adds in those areas emphasizing Obama’s record as some version of “Strong on Enforcement” to try to reassure those voters that “He” isn’t some open-borders nutcase that must be mobilized against. Motivating your own base is only half the equation in building an enthusiasm gap, the other half is trying to not register as a threat that drives turnout for your opponent. “Non-threatening” is probably about the closest thing to a positive brand Biden can realistically try for. Seems like one of those “Only Nixon could go to China” kind of things, where demonstrating a willingness to buck your own party is exactly what is required to be considered “authentic”.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Urusigh says:

                There are some people who would respond by pointing out that Biden’s policy platform would be “the most radically Left to win the Office in the past few decades.”Report

              • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Yup, behold the wonders of micro-targeted advertising. The ads you’ll hear on local radio stations in Smalltown, USA will have little resemblance to and attempt to imply rather opposite policy priorities than the ones that run in Spanish on Telemundo. Jaybird’s draft speech is great, but it’s a pretty safe bet that you’d hear it at a town hall in the Blue Wall, but not an Interview with the NYT. Politicians pander to voter groups in turn and try not to get caught out on the discrepancies in their pitches to groups with strongly divergent views. That’s how the game is played.

                It apparently works on some people, because we still have commenters here who think Biden is “centrist” and Obama was “centrist” despite no less than the NYT, the WaPo, and 538 all stating as fact that Democrats (primarily but not exclusively upper class white “liberal” Democrats”) have indeed been moving sharply left for the last 30 years and dragging the party with them. Republicans haven’t actually moved much at all, we’re still Right of the European mainstream right and left of the European far right. That’s the inherent flaw of “Progressives”, their underlying logic creates a treadmill whereby they must constantly either move further Left or admit that they reached “mission complete” and be subsumed by the moderate wing of the party. The Iron Law of Institutions works strongly against that outcome.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Urusigh says:

                If you want to make the case that the Republican party of Trump is who they have always been, all I can say is…
                Please proceed, Governor.Report

              • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Sure, though I’m surprised you’re the one who asked. You’re probably the only person here on the Dem side who’s actually read a Republican Party Platform.

                But given the audience here, I’ll just start with quoting from a 2019 NYT article using data from the Manifesto Project: “the Republican Party lies far from the Conservative Party in Britain and the Christian Democratic Union in Germany — mainstream right-leaning parties — and closer to far-right parties like Alternative for Germany, whose platform contains plainly xenophobic, anti-Muslim statements. However, the Republican platform does not include the same bigoted policies, and its score is pushed to the right because of its emphasis on traditional morality and a “national way of life.””

                An “emphasis on traditional morality and a “national way of life.” sure sounds like the Grand Old Party to me.

                For a more neutral point of view on the matter, let’s go to my preferred bipartisan news portal: RealClearPolitics https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2018/05/16/has_the_republican_party_really_moved_to_the_right_137048.html

                The short version is that we’ve actually slid left slowly on a few issues, while actually taking action on some things the Reps have often talked about, but less often managed to do anything about (like reducing regulation and confronting China on trade issues). It’s still the same party it’s been. There have been some shifts on the margins (picking up some labor, losing some suburbs), but it’s still mostly the same Republican voters we’ve always had, generally advancing the same priorities we’ve always had.

                Where exactly do you think you’re seeing a departure from within our tradition?Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Jaybird says:

                Well, I did say he has to break through the crushing weight of his own imperfections…Report

          • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird says:

            And if there is one thing that Joe Biden is known for, it is his zealous radicalism and refusal to compromise!Report

            • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

              A good point.

              Which is why my suggestion for arguing for Biden will involve talking about the deals he’s going to be able to make and the sanity he’ll restore than pointing out HOW MORALLY IMPORTANT IT IS TO VOTE AGAINST TRUMP BECAUSE OF #METOO AND CHILDREN IN CAGES when you’re running Biden.

              Remember when I talked about the importance of coming up with arguments to vote *FOR* Biden rather than relying on *AGAINST* Trump?

              That’s still important.

              Biden no longer gets to be “Generic Democrat” as of today.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird says:

                “Biden will restore honor and decency to the American Presidency” seems like a pretty good talking point to me, and carries the implied points about racism and corruption.

                I’m not sure where “deals” fits into this. My suspicion is that Americans have had enough of used car salesmen but I could be wrong.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                I’m not sure where “deals” fits into this.

                Do you remember saying “And if there is one thing that Joe Biden is known for, it is his zealous radicalism and refusal to compromise!”?

                Like, okay. I’m willing to acknowledge that you don’t remember saying that.

                Do you agree that you did say that? And the statement that you made was what I was thinking about when I wrote the comment that I wrote?

                Do you see how *I* might have thought where “deals” fits into this when I wrote my comment in response to your comment?Report

        • Avatar LeeEsq in reply to Saul Degraw says:

          Everybody complaining about the Democratic Party and the nomination of Biden sounds like the KPD protesting that they can’t vote for the SPD because they are “social fascists.” Its even worse in someways because KPD members were really at danger in the Nazi regime. White male Sanders diehards are not no risk in Trump’s America.Report

          • Avatar Stillwater in reply to LeeEsq says:

            What’s weirder is that noone actually defends Joe! from the complaints and criticisms. It’s like everyone agrees he’s a deeply imperfect candidate and the only arguments we have are over the intentions behind expressing that view out loud.Report

        • Avatar Zac Black in reply to Saul Degraw says:

          “If you can’t get inspired by not having kids locked up in cages, protecting and expanding the ACA, having a Judiciary that is not filled with right-wing firebrands, competent and noncorrupt administration, I don’t know what to tell you. Politics involves compromise.”

          Kids being locked up in cages was the result of Democratic compromise on immigration.

          The ACA was the result of Democratic compromise, by adopting a Republican idea that’s basically just a subsidy for massive for-profit insurance companies. Premiums are projected to go up 40% next year. So yeah, forcing everyone into that system instead of just going single-payer turned out to be a great idea. Good call.

          Having a judiciary filled with right-wing firebrands? The result of Democratic compromise. Any Democratic senator, provided party leadership support, could put an anonymous hold on any motion by the Republicans to put forward a federal judicial nominee. If they cared to, they could literally stop the Republicans from ever putting another person on a federal court. That they don’t do that is a lack of political will, not some sort of inability (the Republicans do shit like this all the time).

          Competent and noncorrupt administration? I mean, sure, compared to the current mess. But it will still be full of the Hunter Bidens of the world.

          I agree, politics *does* involve compromise. But when one party has fully decided to check out of the basic concepts of a democratic society, you don’t actually *have* politics anymore. My problem is that Democrats don’t seem to realize we’re at war with the political equivalent of domestic terrorists, and we’re already losing.

          Because we think this is still politics. So we play by the rules. So we compromise.Report

  3. Avatar DensityDuck says:

    I still think about that one tweet that said the reason old black dudes in South Carolina voted for Biden was that he let a black man tell him what to do, and they liked how that felt.

    What’s his plan? What’s his history? What policies does he endorse, and how will they affect us? Dunno. Dun’ care. He let a black man tell him what to do. That’s what they care about. That’s all they care about.Report

    • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to DensityDuck says:

      Yeah, I often let a single tweet from the internet shape my understanding of the world.Report

    • Avatar Urusigh in reply to DensityDuck says:

      This reminds me of when Obama was running for his first term. I asked everyone in my office who they were voting for (all said “Obama!”), why (all said “”Electing the First Black President would be historic!”), and what policies of his they favored (not a single one of those enthusiastic Obama voters could name a single policy he ran on. Let me repeat that for emphasis: They didn’t actually know what policies they were voting into office and they couldn’t care less at the time. Most of them spent the rest of his term saying “Thanks Obama” sarcastically as one new idiocy after another came down from above to complicate our jobs, but they still liked the guy personally even as they mocked his terrible policies. When Hillary ran in 2016 only about half my office fell for the “It would be historic!” reason, but they still couldn’t articulate any of Clinton’s policies they actually cared about. Maybe to the old black dudes “he let a black man tell him what to do” is historical enough, but to the rest of the electorate I doubt Biden will be considered “historical” in any sense except that he’s a fossil. I sincerely hope that those ignorant votes are gone and this election actually does come down to differences in policy.Report

      • Avatar Philip H in reply to Urusigh says:

        Kind of like how many Trump supporters can’t name a policy outcome that they like (except maybe the increase in the stock market prior to March 2020) but like the “look” of th guy and the way he “fights.”Report

        • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Philip H says:

          I’d guess that it’s safe to say my social circle includes a lot more Trump supporters than yours does and all of them I asked the same questions had clear answers, i.e. Conservatives judges, Pro-Life, “Build the Wall!”, better trade deals, etc. Even his foes have admitted repeatedly that Trump has been remarkably consistent in office with his campaign promises. You might not LIKE those promises, but I’m seriously skeptical that you know any Trump supporters who didn’t know and like “Build the Wall” and “Drain the Swamp”. If there’s one thing Trump excels at, it’s putting his brand out there. His list of “Promises made, Promises kept” is extensive.Report

        • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Philip H says:

          Speaking as someone who is friends with Trump supporters (and I define “friends” as “I have cooked for them, they have cooked for me”), they are capable of naming policy outcomes they like. Urusigh points out judges and immigration, my friends mention Israel (they *LOVE* the embassy move) and they like that he’s skeptical of free trade with China (if not free trade in general).

          A quiz I saw on twitter that I thought was interesting: “What’s your favorite Biden policy?”

          Quick! What is it!

          The point isn’t to get you to google something and answer me, the point is to dig around in your head and find one and notice how long it takes you.

          Another fun question I saw on the twitters: “What has Biden done to earn your vote?”

          Run that around your head and see what you get.

          (The answer I saw to the second question was, paraphrased, “He won the primary.” For what it’s worth, I don’t see that as a particularly GOTV kinda answer but… hey. Biden appeals strongly to a number of people that we have no, absolutely no, visibility to. Which means that we have to rely on people that we have no visibility to being energized enough to get out and vote in November.)Report

          • Avatar Philip H in reply to Jaybird says:

            so my next door neighbor is an Obama to Trump guy, and a union carpenter in a right to work state to boot. I’ve got retired Navy chiefs close by as well (who are also obama to trump voters) and we all regularly socialize (though now with social distancing). Sample size is about 10.

            To a person they all say first and foremost its his bearing that won them (the old “he’s a fighter” saw). they split 50/50 on his immigration policies, and none of them support his taking DoD funds to build a wall. They were all grateful for the stock market going up under him until recently, though more then 50% acknowledged he inherited a rising economy.

            Thats what I’m working with first hand – and it doesn’t read a major support for his policies.

            As to Mr. Biden – he hasn’t earned my vote at all and I don’t support most of his policy choices as expressed by his record (you know the actual doing not the saying). but he’s all we are left with on the left (!) and since I believe the current President has done more harm then good, Biden is what I have to work from to remove him, and hope the down ballot does better.

            And yeah, 45% sat out last time, and I don’t see Biden getting them into the fray.Report

            • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Philip H says:

              Well, my main arguments for Biden beating Trump have always been Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania.

              My Trumpy friends have been Trumpy since he won the nomination (one of my bosses explained to me that a vote for Gary Johnson was a vote for Hillary, if you want his mindset). So I don’t think I have any Obama-to-Trump friends. They’re all either Vote D diehards or Vote R diehards. (I suppose I have a couple of “I don’t even know who’s running… No, that wasn’t an invitation for you to tell me” friends.)

              The main dynamics I’m looking out for are:

              Will Trump inspire his base to turn out again?
              Will Trump’s excesses over the past however many months/years instead depress his base?
              Will Biden inspire his base to turn out?
              Will Biden’s campaigning and past record over the past however many months/years instead depress his base?
              How many people could go either way? Who will do the best job of inspiring those people?

              And, of course, the ever-popular: Will there be a Bradley Effect again?

              And that’s it. I see a bunch of stuff out there for people who are looking for an excuse to vote for Trump to latch onto.
              I see a bunch of stuff out there for people who are looking for an excuse to vote *AGAINST* Trump to latch onto.

              But then I put Biden in there for those two statements and… I’m not having trouble with the latter. The former? Yeah, I need some help with the former. (Maybe this is where the people we have no visibility to come in.)Report

              • Avatar Philip H in reply to Jaybird says:

                That’s my point about Biden. He doesn’t inspire the Democratic party fully, much less the 45% who sat out. And, with relatives in Wisconsin, he won’t win right leaning moderates.Report

              • Avatar JS in reply to Philip H says:

                “He doesn’t inspire the Democratic party fully, much less the 45% who sat out.”

                45% or so of every election sit out. Including 2008, since at least the 70s. So what’s your point? I think Obama got it down to 42% in 2008, but it was 46-47% or more in 2012.

                Second, who would “inspire the party fully”? What percentage do they need to win the primary by for you to consider the party “fully inspired”?

                I mean Obama won something like 50.1% in the 2008 primary. Was that enough? Because Biden’s pulling 60/40 in every remaining state.

                Who has every “inspired a party fully”? In recent history? Or ever, for that matter? What’s the cut-off?

                You’re just throwing universal crap at the wall and claiming that’s somehow a bad thing thing — but all of that applies to Sanders as well. And Obama. And Clinton. And Trump. And Dubya. And the other Clinton. And the other Bush.

                So put some meat on the bones here. What qualifies as “inspiring a party full” and who has done it? Why is “45% sat out” a big, sudden, urgent, election-shattering problem when it’s been the status-quo since the 70s?Report

  4. Avatar InMD says:

    I think both the D establishment and all the hyperventilating progressive types losing their minds on TV and social media over ‘BernieBros’ really owe the guy an apology.Report

  5. Avatar Saul Degraw says:

    Analogy time. The DNC is to Bernie Supporters as to the U.N. is right-wingers. Both are largely ineffectual and toothless organizations but they get treated as convenient all powerful cabals/foils when things go wrong for said side.Report

  6. Avatar Stillwater says:

    Justin Amash:

    Trump versus Biden is not the contest America deserves or the one it needs right now.

    There are very few people in politics who’ve made it through the Trump era without getting s***-smeared and Amash is one of them.Report

    • Avatar J_A in reply to Stillwater says:

      I’m not sure what is Amash proposing here

      To just call off the whole thing as unneeded and move on to Trump’s second term directly? For Trump to gracefully concede that he is unpopular and retire to Mar a Lago?Report

      • Avatar Stillwater in reply to J_A says:

        He’s not proposing anything.Report

        • Avatar J_A in reply to Stillwater says:

          Then Justin Amash gave away the chance to shut up. Either the contest should go on, or one of the two has to bow out. There’s no “contest, nut no contest because it is not needed” third alternative

          It might not be what we deserve – But we definitely NEED it

          And we can have a bet who Amash will vote for in November. Not Biden, for sureReport

          • Avatar Stillwater in reply to J_A says:

            J-A, he’s offering social commentary. That’s all.

            Add: and again a Democratic Party voter rejects criticism because the person making it wouldn’t ever vote Dem anyway. I don’t know who Amash will vote for. Why does it matter? I feel the same way he does and I’m voting for Biden…Report

          • Avatar Jaybird in reply to J_A says:

            And we can have a bet who Amash will vote for in November. Not Biden, for sure

            I have a guess:

            Report

      • Avatar Stillwater in reply to J_A says:

        I’m not sure what is Amash proposing here

        Your spidey sense is finely tuned my friend. Word on the street is that Amash is considering a third party run for POTUS. lololololcrycryReport

  7. Avatar North says:

    Good on Bernie for bowing to political reality. Personally I really would have preferred that Biden hadn’t run. It is difficult to try and even game out how the primary would have gone without Biden in it considering how massive a political gravitational effect Biden’s present had on it both in the constituencies he held in his orbit and the candidates his presence deterred from running or deprived of oxygen. I would like to think that had Biden not run then Bernie would have simply lost to a different moderate Democratic candidate (a younger more eloquent one) but there’s simply no way to be sure.

    Bernie’s whole campaign premise was based on 3 assumptions:
    1: That he could motivate large numbers of new previous non-voters to turn out and pull the lever for him. He failed to do so, indisputably, and this is the heart and soul of his campaign failure.
    2: That the majority of Democratic voters who are, despite all right wing propagandizing to the contrary, generally centrist to center leftist at most would remain fractured across multiple candidates.
    3: That the Democratic party would remain as inept and inert as the Republican party was when Trump invaded it. For better or for worse one of the oldest political parties in the world still has some sap flowing in its veins, it’s a living community and it acted to protect the interest of its voters and itself.

    There’re other more minor issues, his negativity verging on flat out hostility to everyone outside of his political cohort, his personal style and assorted other things but I think they’re all just clarifications or provisos on the above 3 items.
    The socialist left has come a long way with Bernie leading it, they probably owe him a lot of gratitude. They also need to find a new younger standard bearer. The center will need one too after Biden and I suspect Biden’s veep choice will have a lot of impact on that but for now their job is going to be to make a Democratic President a reality in November. Biden’s victory makes that an easier task but it’s far from assured. A lot of work has to be done.Report

    • Avatar Jaybird in reply to North says:

      I’m in a weird place where I’m thinking “If you were going to drop out, you should have dropped out a week ago. A lot of unpleasantness could have been avoided when it became mathematically impossible to get enough delegates.”

      I mean, I understand that he was running on the “We’ve got a 10-15% chance that Biden will die and then we’ll become the frontrunner again” narrow path and all. But he should have dropped out last week, if dropping out this week was on the table. Nothing was gained by dropping out today that wouldn’t have been given by dropping out last week (or two weeks ago, even).Report

      • Avatar North in reply to Jaybird says:

        Well it’s Bernie, he’s a stubborn ol’ coot in both the best and worst of ways. Sure dropping out last week would have made more sense but it takes a lot of drubbing to get that idea through to him.
        And, really, it’s anyone’s guess why he’s dropping out now. I’m still a little surprised he is doing so. Presumably due to the virus. I’m confident in saying if it were not for the virus he’d be going all the way to the convention again regardless of the math.Report

      • Avatar Jesse in reply to Jaybird says:

        I genuinely think Bernie was planning to run to the convention, but COVID made further primaries a possible vector for infection and since Bernie is a decent person who can do math, he decided it’s better to drop out, instead of getting 35% of the delegates versus the 29% of the delegates he’ll end up with or whatever.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to North says:

      I agree. The big issue I am seeing is that in the very online political world, there are lots of people who are just damned upset that most people do not agree with them and why won’t you let them be a vanguard damnit. That includes the non-Bernie political world and people here. There are also lots of people seemingly drawn to inconoclasm for the sake of iconoclasm.Report

      • Avatar North in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        We’re at the storming phase of the nomination process. A contender for the nomination has given up the ghost and his passionate supporters have to come to grips with that. The best thing Biden supporters can do is be gently sympathetic and let the Bernie supporters vent. If there’s signs of serious Bernie or nothing/Bernie or else Trump movement closer to the end of summer then maybe a different response is merited but right now the reactions you’re seeing are natural and normal.Report

        • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to North says:

          Again you prove to be more patient than I am. I think a lot of his hardcore supporters hate the Democratic Party more than they hate alleged reactionaries. Some of them are already stating they will vote for Trump. His press secretary spent more time shitting on Democrats than she did not critiquing the actual gouty reactionary in the White House. Then they get defensive and angry when you point out that they are shitting on you for being a proud Democrat because in their minds “icky.”Report

          • Avatar North in reply to Saul Degraw says:

            Eh, it’s just good politics. A kind word turns away wrath. Joe doesn’t need to embrace Bernie’s politics but simply being kind, as he is being, to his supporters is the best bet for him. The Berniacs will rage online but who the fish cares? There weren’t remotely enough of them to push Bernie to the nomination and it remains to be proven that there’ll be enough Bernie to Trump voters to outweigh the gains Biden will clock in simply by not being HRC.
            Look at how Biden performed in Michigan. He won every state. He won non-college educated voters. He probably isn’t going to win that Demographic against Trump but if he shaved even a few percentage points of the margin of victory for Trump in that state then he wins. Trump has nowhere else to make gains.Report

            • Avatar Jaybird in reply to North says:

              (Technically, he has *ONE* place where he might make gains. In 2012, Gary Johnson almost got 1% of votes. It was, like, .99%. That’s *REALLY* close to 1! In 2016, he got over 3%. I read that 2% as being protest votes.)Report

              • Avatar North in reply to Jaybird says:

                True, but if Trump counting on genuine libertarian legions of voters to eschew their cat herding party and come save him then I’d say he’s making a more risky bet than even Bernie made betting on young normally non-voters to turn out. Especially as my back of the envelope scribbling estimates that Trump has accomplished utterly nothing in his term that would appeal to a genuine libertarian*.

                He’s cut no government functions, he’s exploded the debt, his judicial appointments are red meat for socialcons but I doubt they should much impress libertarians, he misappropriated defense department funds to build a couple sections of wall, I mean what would a genuine libertarian see in any of that to win their vote? I mean if the Dems were going whole hog communist then maybe but this whole conversation is being had in the burning flames of the “socialize everything” lefts train wreck while the Dems are tacking back to the center.

                *As opposed to the far more numerous republitarians, but Trump had all their votes in 2016 already.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to North says:

                The genuine legions of libertarians make up that .99%.

                It’s the 2.something% of 2016’s libertarian voters that *MAY* wander back.

                The question is “did they jump to the libertarians from the Dems or from the Reps?”

                Or, I suppose, from the “never voted befores”?

                Remember, I’m not talking about the Vote Gold! No matter! Bold! people. I’m talking about the 2% that Gary Johnson picked up that, surely, Vermin Supreme won’t pick up.

                In Michigan, Johnson/Weld got 3.59% in 2016. In 2012, the Libertarians got .16%. (That’s one sixth of one percent.)

                In Wisconsin, Johnson/Weld got 3.58%. In 2012, the Libertarians got .67%.

                In Pennsylvania, Johnson/Weld got 2.38%. In 2012, the Libertarians got .87%.

                Two states gave an additional 2% (or more!) of their vote to the libertarian party. PA only gave an additional 1.5%.

                (All numbers taken from here and here.)Report

              • Avatar North in reply to Jaybird says:

                I get ya. But in my opinion that far out on the political spectrum I suspect that it’s almost impossible to have a unifying theme that encompasses all those outliers.

                For Trump to cut into that population and get their votes in 2020 what does he need to do?
                -I mean is it likely that a portion of that population will find Joe Biden more repulsive than HRC and vote for Trump to block him? We’re talking about people who didn’t vote for Trump to block HRC in 2016. I suspect that is extremely unlikely. If it was Trump vs Bernie I could imagine it but vs Biden??
                -Then there’s actions in office. Presumably a portion of that 2% didn’t support Trump in 2016 because he tacked left on economics- promised to protect entitlements, do something better than the ACA etc. Trump did flagrantly break those promises and has governed as a pretty standard Republican. He’s tried to take the ACA down, ran up decific funded tax cuts etc… maybe that could lure some portion of those libertarians back?

                Otherwise, I dunno, past those two reasons I can’t think of any rationale for the true libertarians you highlighted in that voting cohort to support Trump now when they didn’t in 2016.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to North says:

                Here’s one *HUGE* thing that has changed since 2016: Donald Trump has moved from being an unknown quantity to being a known quantity.

                Given Trump’s actions in office, and given not only the promises he’s broken but the promises he’s more-or-less kept, is that enough to win back the non-true 2016 libertarians that got added onto the top of the 2012 numbers?

                I don’t know. I don’t know how many of those people were Anyone But Clinton voters (who now heave a sigh of relief that Biden is running and they can, finally, vote for a Democrat that they don’t hate). I don’t know how many of those people would have voted for Trump if they knew he’d be a president like the one he’s been for the last 4 years.

                But I do think that there is room in the 1.5-3% in those three states for Trump to court and mine and otherwise try to get to vote for him (or stay at home or vote for Vermin Supreme instead of voting for Biden).

                It’s the overconfidence I’m warning against.

                Because the libertarian numbers for those states is going to regress to the mean, and hard, come November.Report

              • Avatar North in reply to Jaybird says:

                Oh I’m definitly trying to be wary of overconfidence but still. It is hard to imagine that those libertarians who refused to vote for Trump when his opponent was HRC are going to suddenly give Trump their vote when his opponent is Biden. I don’t know either, of course but I do know that Trump will desperately need a lot of them if Biden narrows the gap between himself and Trump with non college whites by even a point or two.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to North says:

                It is hard to imagine that those libertarians who refused to vote for Trump when his opponent was HRC are going to suddenly give Trump their vote when his opponent is Biden.

                For what it is worth: I don’t find it difficult to imagine that. The question, for me, is whether the vote ends up being 50/50 for Trump vs. Biden or if those regressing-to-the-mean find themselves lopsidedly finding the same answer to the question “Who do I hate more?”

                And on one side is Trump and his ilk… and on the other side is Biden and his eminently qualified associates.Report

              • Avatar North in reply to Jaybird says:

                Well you’re closer to the libertarian mindset than I so I must defer to your expertise but recall we’re talking not just about voting for Trump over Biden but voting for Trump over Biden AND over the Libertarian Party candidate.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to North says:

                Again, I’m not talking about the .16% that voted Libertarian in 2012. They will, unless they are dead*, vote for the Libertarian candidate in 2016.

                It’s the ones who made that number jump by more than an order of magnitude that I am thinking about and asking myself “how many of their worst fears have been realized?” versus “how many of their worst fears have been avoided?”

                Plus, on top of that, you’ve got The Culture War in full effect and if your main measure of who is winning the culture war is “who is screaming the loudest?”, Trump is the greatest culture warrior we’ve ever seen.

                *If they are dead, they will vote for Biden.Report

              • Avatar JS in reply to North says:

                The swing in suburban women — see 2018, a high turnout election on both sides — has been particularly devastating to Trump and the GOP.

                For him to win, they’d have to come back.

                I’m struggling to think, on that front, anything that’s happened so far to swing that back. Or anything the GOP — or Trump — has even tried.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to JS says:

                If I could think of anything that might blunt Biden’s advantage with women against Trump that 2018 didn’t have but 2016 did, it would be the whole #MeToo thing.

                In 2018, it was Trump against #MeToo.

                in 2020… well, you have to understand. There are a lot of women out there who just make things up. Look at Amber Heard.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird says:

                In every one of these crystal ball gazing conversations, some actual data would help:

                In the general election match up, however, there is very little crossover support for either Biden or Trump among partisans: Biden is supported by 91% of Democrats, while Trump holds 96% of Republicans. Independent voters break for Biden, 52% behind the former vice president, 40% for Trump.
                The demographic divides that defined the 2016 election seem likely to persist in 2020. Biden carries 62% of women to 32% for Trump, while Trump leads among men (51% to 44% for Biden).
                Biden performs well among voters of color, 72% of whom support him, while white voters break toward Trump (52% for Trump, 44% for Biden).
                And the poll suggests Biden holds a broad advantage among younger voters, who tended to be more supportive of Sanders in the Democratic primary fight. Among those under age 35, 62% back Biden, 31% Trump, while Trump’s support is stronger among seniors (55% Trump to 42% Biden).

                https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/09/politics/cnn-poll-biden-trump/Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                In that actual data you mention, do they compare Biden’s numbers (that are better than Trump’s) to the numbers that Clinton had (that were better than Trump’s)?

                Because I’d really, really, really want to know that Biden is doing better in those categories than Clinton was.

                I mean, if Clinton had similar numbers in 2016, I could easily see holding them up, in 2016, as why Clinton would win.

                But if I held them up, in 2016, as why Clinton would win, I’d then look to see how they translated in practice.

                Should I bother clicking on the link?Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird says:

                No, just embed the “Dewey Defeats Truman” pic.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Thanks for the data, I guess.Report

              • Avatar North in reply to JS says:

                I wouldn’t want to tempt fate. A certain optimism about Biden is warranted but only if married with a grim determination to get out the vote to support him.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels in reply to North says:

                Right, which is why I keep harping on the 45% or so which forms Trump’s support.

                They aren’t going to abandon him no matter what happens so we have to work like hell to gain that sliver that separates the two.

                IMO, that sliver is less about crossover persuadables, but by GOTV and enthusiasm.Report

              • Avatar North in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                That is a very reasonable opinion but even if the election does turn on GOTV and enthusiasm then thinking about what marginal right wing Trump voters care about is relevant since not turning them out or amping their enthusiasm to vote vs just staying home is important.

                Hell, half the sour grapes I read online is from Trumpians who’re bitterly disappointed that they don’t get to run against Bernie. That soothes my worries about Biden mildly.Report

  8. Avatar Saul Degraw says:

    I am starting to think that a lot of people are deeply upset that their preferred policy outcomes and preferences are not high priorities for a lot of their fellow countrymen and would rather stay ideological pure than have to compromise and get some of what they want. Compromise is difficult and hard and can often be disappointing. Ideological purity and taking the toys home is easy.Report

    • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Saul Degraw says:

      You mean like “children in cages”? Shit like that?Report

    • Avatar Urusigh in reply to Saul Degraw says:

      Today is truly a red letter day. Saul, I agree with you entirely.

      Admittedly, I generally consider that more of a feature than a bug (I like voters having meaningful choices between clear alternatives over “no matter who you elect as President, all you’ll ‘win’ is a different signature as he signs pretty much the same compromise Congress would have handed the other guy to sign”), but then I’m also a small government libertarian type who considers a gridlocked federal government to be the next best thing to a smaller, less powerful federal government. Besides, we’ve been doing this for a long time, pretty much everything worth compromising on already has been, so there’s not much left to talk about that’s actually negotiable.Report

  9. Avatar Jaybird says:

    And I have seen my first attack ad.

    Get your counter-arguments ready. We are going to have approximately one million years of this sort of thing.Report

    • Avatar Philip H in reply to Jaybird says:

      He probably is going to get crushed.
      Democrats keep bringing policy binders to a gun fight.Report

    • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird says:

      Meanwhile in Rhinelander WI Trump is suing a small local TV station for airing an anti trump ad bought by a liberal PAC. Seems like there are plenty of anti trump attack ads which will hit home. Of course this is leaving aside the suing people to suppress speech thing. Attack law suits are a trump MO.Report

      • Avatar Stillwater in reply to greginak says:

        BREAKING: Trump SLAPPs Beer-Brewing Badgers!Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak says:

        Greg, I already know that both sides are exceptionally unappealing. You don’t need to point that out.

        Here is a take I posted to my work off-topic chat earlier today:

        Now we just have to figure out if Trump can weather the next 7 months, if Biden can survive the next 7 months, if the Democrats need The Left to win elections and if The Right is energized even after a global pandemic.Report

        • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird says:

          Ohhhh a BSDI siting. Must be spring and migration season.Report

          • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak says:

            Greg, you *DO* realize that you’re the one who brought up Trump in response to my talking about Biden, right?

            I was specifically talking about seeing my first anti-Biden attack ad and your response was to start talking about Trump.

            Please acknowledge that you understand that what *I* see was me talking about Biden and your response to my talking about Biden was to bring up Trump.

            That happened, right?Report

            • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird says:

              I was noting something beyond what every campaign does. There are plenty of attack ads. Trump is suing a local tv station for airing an ad. Not suing the PAC. The suit is almost certainly a loser. But it is a SLAPP, trying to scare stations away from airing anti trump ads. That seems ohh so very slightly different. Just a tad, a skoosh different.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak says:

                Well, I imagine that that is how it will play out in the real world.

                “Here is a criticism of Biden that will need to be answered.”
                “BUT TRUMP!”

                Additionally, this whole “both sidesism”, while it exists in the Real World, it isn’t seen as an immediate “YOU LOSE THE ARGUMENT!” there.

                (For the most part, it also isn’t seen as one here… outside of a couple of people, of course.)Report

              • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird says:

                Well i know people will just do the “nothing to see here, keep moving” thing. Boiling frogs and all that. Of course the only things that matter are how things play in the media or help with arguing. What else could there be.Report

              • Avatar Aaron David in reply to greginak says:

                Well, there really is nothing to see here, as you didn’t provide a link or source of any sort. So, as of now it is heresay. Which means nothing to see here.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Aaron David says:

                {{Aaron, just jumping in here to note your new-found reliance on citing media sources in arguments when only a few months ago dismissed those sites because they consistently got everything wrong. What changed?}}Report

              • Avatar Aaron David in reply to Stillwater says:

                What site am I ignoring? What am I missing here?

                If it is citing (siting?) the NYT or somesuch, I generally do it to show even left-centric sites (cites?) are saying what I am trying to show someone. Trying to convince someone who leans to the left politically t by cited FOX or other right leaning source tends to get ignored, but using a source that generally agrees with someone politically goes a lot farther. In other words, if I show something to Greg that is in FOX, he might poo poo it, but if I show him something in Cross Country Skier, it could be a little more convincing.

                And we have had this exact discussion before, albeit a few years back. Same answer then also.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Jaybird says:

                I’m not entirely sure Biden will have to answer the question implied in the Smug video. I’m not sure he’ll have to answer *most* questions asked by the opposition. Politics is mostly about winning hearts, not minds, which is something Democrats have lost sight of with all their white papers and triangulation and stuffnthings.

                But to win hearts Biden has to actually project an image which goes quite a ways beyond merely being not-Trump.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Stillwater says:

                The argument over Trade Policy is currently undergoing an earthquake.

                A mere year ago, we could discuss how much better the median American was due to our trade with China. How much better stuff like Acid Rain is due to offshoring manufacturing and whatnot.

                I don’t know how things are going to shake out by November but I think that Biden is vulnerable on such things as the TPP.

                And Trump being skeptical and wrecking the TPP was an obvious bad thing that Trump did… last year.

                But it is the current year.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Jaybird says:

                He’s biden his time. The thing I’d pay attention to at this point: who is his staff. More than any other campaign in our lifetimes, Biden’s team is gonna have to manage him, his message, his exposure. Farm out the negative ads to surrogates, have him focus on the positive message. Trust that people *already* know how awful Trump is and give them a reason to vote for you.

                {{That’s the same advice I gave Hillary last cycle and she never returned my calls…}}Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Stillwater says:

                Bernie gave his endorsement and that was good news (even if the various DSAs didn’t follow suit). I’m hoping that Biden figures out some way to realistically attack Trump on the current crisis.

                Everything I keep coming up with is easily flipped around. “Why don’t our heroic nurses have more masks?” “Because you outsourced our medical manufacturing to China to please your corporate donors.” See? Just play around with that sort of thing and see what you can come up with. “Why didn’t you shut down New York City?” “I tried to. Leadership there said that they’d rather celebrate Chinese New Year.”

                Biden can get a good week’s worth of press in the next week or two by announcing a running mate.

                Two months ago, Gretchen Whitmer struck me as being a perfect name on the short list (if not *THE* perfect pick). But the seed/lottery thing strikes me as very bad.

                There are so very many perfect storms of things going so very wrong.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Jaybird says:

                I’m hoping that Biden figures out some way to realistically attack Trump on the current crisis.

                “What would you do differently Joe?”

                “I’d have had tests developed and in the field two weeks after the intelligence community’s first briefing of the pandemic coming our way; I’d have empowereds US companies to make medical gear by relaxing FDA regulations on those products; I’d have worked with governors to acquire necessary PPE from foreign sources instead of outbidding those governors or outright stealing it from them. … Oh you haven’t heard about that? Trump told FEMA to steal medical equipment purchased by private hospitals and states at the point of delivery, equipment hospitals needed to save lives. Yeah, that’s bullshit, ya nackey. I’d have immediately asked universities and private businesses to develop an antibody test with a guaranteed approval if it was at least 80% reliable. I’d have made sure Congress included financial resources for states and hospitals to buy all this equipment. I could go on all day folks. Seriously, I could go on and on.”Report

              • Avatar InMD in reply to Stillwater says:

                It all depends on how Joe and Jane normie voter are looking at all this. I mean I’m personally feeling Jaybird’s chickens coming home to roost narrative, but that’s probably just my biases. I’m definitely not sure the vast voting public Out There sees the connection.

                Maybe the real concern should be less the broader questions about trade and more Biden’s ability to deliver your proposed response under the bright lights. I’m sure he can mouth it but increasingly alarmed he won’t be able to deliver it the way he’ll need to.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to InMD says:

                I’m not sure he can deliver it either. He’ll need to *really lean on* on his advisers, his surrogates, outside ads and the like.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Stillwater says:

                I hope he has decent advisors.

                I suspect that he doesn’t.

                It’s also slowly sinking in that this isn’t the same Joe Biden that slaughtered Paul Ryan in 2012.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Jaybird says:

                Yeah, the Joe Biden from 8 years ago is the Joe Biden we need now.Report

    • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Jaybird says:

      China crippled America? When did that happen?Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Kazzy says:

        Response the first:
        Three sets of voters, Kazzy.

        1. They will vote for your guy, no matter what. (Assuming they vote.)
        2. They will vote for the other guy, no matter what. Assuming they vote.)
        3. Could be persuaded either way.

        Do you really think that getting bogged down in how much responsibility China had when it came to the SARS-COV-2 s, will be to the benefit of Biden? Making the opposition discuss what “crippled” means and “when” that happened? That will *HELP* Biden out? Because, lemme tell ya, while there are a whole lot of #1s who will want to talk about how Trump screwed up protecting the US from this virus, getting bogged down in China’s relationship to Trump screwing that up AIN’T gonna help. As a matter of fact, it might fire up the #2s. Get them to argue about a global economy where stuff our supply lines for essentials (such as medical equipment!) is reliant on China. And given how I see the “China screwed us!” vs. “Oh! Go into more detail!” argument shaking out, I see the #3s as, at best, not being pushed toward Biden. This is a bad play and I hope that that isn’t the response on a national level.

        Response the second:
        You’re teaching toddlers through a monitor rather than by sitting with them. While I appreciate that “crippled” is a rather ableist term, I’m pretty sure that you’re in a situation where you’re trying to make the best of a bad one, rather than working in a situation where you have all of the tools you had at your disposal a mere 4 months ago. If you don’t like the word “crippled”, would “gravely hindered” be okay? Would it be okay to talk about how China “gravely hindered” the US?

        As for “when that happened”, it would be with the release of the Wuhan Virus.Report

  10. Avatar North says:

    Well, Bernie has endorsed Joe in a surprise showing as a guest on Joe’s podcast. That’s good news for Joe and the party though it’s anyone’s guess if it’ll help. It certainly can’t hurt though.Report

    • Avatar Philip H in reply to North says:

      LOTS of Bernie supporters on Democratic Socialist Facebook are now going to have a reckoning -as they have been ardently advocating for voting for Bernie in the remaining primaries and then either writing him in or voting 3rd party. That’s where the popcorn needs to be popped.

      I still say Biden isn’t going to inspire the numbers of people he needs in the places he needs to get the votes he needs. I guess we shall see on that too.Report

      • Avatar North in reply to Philip H says:

        I’m on the opposite side from your predication. I see Trumps victory as so extremely narrow and his subsequent Presidency not doing him any favors. I don’t know if I’d say Biden is going to inspire much excitement to vote for him but Trump inspires a lot of excitement to vote against him. None of the elements (Democratic complacency towards the mid-west, HRC’s own errors and baggage, Trump’s ability to be ambiguous about what kind of President he’d be) that pushed Trump over the line will be operative in 2020.
        I’d not be so bold as to predict a landslide or an assured victory but I don’t think calling Biden uninspiring is as much of an assurance of his defeat as you do.Report

    • Avatar DensityDuck in reply to North says:

      hey, he endorsed Clinton too, for what it was worth.Report

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