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Author Topic: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates [Poll updated!]  (Read 40632 times)

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Online TheGlyphstone

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #750 on: February 21, 2016, 08:39:51 PM »
The real horror isn't the possibility that it already exists. It's the possibility that if it doesn't already exist, Trump will intentionally make it just to capitalize on the publicity. It's not like any other part of his campaign makes logical sense.

Offline Mithlomwen

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #751 on: February 21, 2016, 08:54:06 PM »
....and then we'll all need brain bleach. 

Or one of these...

Online ReijiTabibito

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #752 on: February 21, 2016, 08:58:36 PM »
Actually, Mith, I would prefer...

...one of these.

Offline consortium11

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #753 on: February 22, 2016, 06:50:03 AM »
I admire this more for the technical skill then any great political point:


Offline mannik

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #754 on: February 22, 2016, 04:31:50 PM »

Offline elone

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #755 on: February 23, 2016, 09:16:11 PM »
Interesting, but why is there an ad for AIPAC on here?

Today i went to see Bernie Sanders speak in Norfolk, VA. What a great experience to hear someone tell the truth and actually address questions that people have that will impact their lives. It was inspiring. Why anyone who has a choice between Hillary and Bernie Sanders would chose Hillary is beyond me. Just my opinion. The man is genuine!

Offline mannik

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #756 on: February 23, 2016, 09:40:50 PM »
Interesting, but why is there an ad for AIPAC on here?

Today i went to see Bernie Sanders speak in Norfolk, VA. What a great experience to hear someone tell the truth and actually address questions that people have that will impact their lives. It was inspiring. Why anyone who has a choice between Hillary and Bernie Sanders would chose Hillary is beyond me. Just my opinion. The man is genuine!
Because youtube put it in there?

I know that video is kinda old and not speaking directly about this election cycle, but it's still perfectly relevant. None of that has changed.

And while I'll agree, I like Bernie's platform considerably more than Hillary, and definitely Trump...still not certain he's the right choice. I still get the feeling he's just saying what people want to hear and not what he actually intends to do.

Much of his speeches seem like rehashed versions of Ron Paul monologues. 

Honestly though, I think for true progress in the right direction we need to pick someone who isn't part of the two party system. You know...that is assuming that the system in place would even acknowledge that we did in fact pick someone else, which I'm fairly certain it wouldn't....Trump would probably be declared the winner and the never ending war for profit business will continue as usual.

Offline consortium11

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #757 on: February 24, 2016, 03:15:45 AM »
Honestly though, I think for true progress in the right direction we need to pick someone who isn't part of the two party system. You know...that is assuming that the system in place would even acknowledge that we did in fact pick someone else, which I'm fairly certain it wouldn't....Trump would probably be declared the winner and the never ending war for profit business will continue as usual.

Both Trump and Sanders are largely outside of the two party system already.

Sanders isn't officially a Democrat (or at least wasn't until this election cycle), having kept himself officially independent while only caucusing with the Democrats. As for Trump, he's hardly been a consistent Republican over the years and is largely using the Republicans now in the same way Sanders is using the Democrats; as a pathway to winning an election. Neither are liked by the establishment of either party, neither have relied on the party for fundraising and neither are taking significant money from the sort of institutional donors that normally fund candidates.

I can understand why people dislike Trump (although I will note it's worth looking past the rhetoric during an election cycle to look at what's behind it) but one shouldn't act as if he's some sort of establishment candidate which the powers-that-be support; on the Republican side that was Jeb Bush and is now Rubio.

Offline Mithlomwen

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #758 on: February 24, 2016, 08:18:26 AM »
It's looking more and more like Trump will actually end up being the GOP presidential candidate. 

Offline ThePrince

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #759 on: February 24, 2016, 08:45:34 AM »
It's looking more and more like Trump will actually end up being the GOP presidential candidate.

I think it is still too early to call Trump winning the nomination. If he sweeps Super Tuesday than its more likely, But Cruz, Rubio and maybe even Kasich are likely to win some states and it's not how many early states you when it's how many delegates you amass. Personally, I think that we are closer to a brokered convention than a Trump victory, at lest for right now.

The big take away from the Nevada Caucus, I think, is that Marco Rubio got about the same percent of voters as he did in SC. Rubio strategy has been that Trump has a hard ceiling of support at around 32ish percent. When candidates drop out, voters will consolidate behind a non-Trump candidate that will be able to surpass Trump. With Jeb dropping out Rubio thought that the voters who would have voted for Jeb would vote for him. But that didn't happen, Trump almost doubled Rubio's numbers and for the first time got more than 30 percent of the vote.

Now Nevada isn't a really important state compared to the other early voting states and it's a hard state to poll. I don't think any candidate was betting heavily on winning it. So we don't know if this a anomaly or the republican's preparing for a Trump nomination.

We will find out next Tuesday.

Offline Cycle

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #760 on: February 25, 2016, 03:40:11 PM »
All told, economists see this as creating a surplus economy. It will not be destroying our military, since we spend close to a billion dollars a year on a new plane that doesn't work (F-35). It will help to create jobs, allowing for a higher minimum wage. This in turn decreases the need for people to be on SNAP benefits and welfare. That adds money to the economy as well, though a significantly lesser amount.

So I've looked into this a bit, and it doesn't look like the economists all agree that Bernie's plan will be good for the economy.  There are several who think that conclusion is flawed.  This WSJ article summarizes the different positions succinctly.

Bernie's plan looks like it'll increase the lower income families' annual tax burden by 10-12%, while increasing the amount paid by those who make between $500k and $2M by 25+% (up to an annual rate of 65%).  Trump, Buffet, and the Kochs (the top 0.1%) will get hit at 73%--assuming they don't employ fancy accounting to avoid ordinary income.

An open question remains as to what will happen if we create a tax plan that punishes people for making more money.  I suspect the smart ones will avoid getting taxed one way or another, thus leaving a hole in revenue.

Moreover, no one seems able to address my primary concern:  i.e., Bernie appears to have 0 chance of accomplishing any of the proposed goals--even if the Democrats win control of the Senate--which Bernie's actual campaign appears to have no coherent plan to accomplish.

So yeah, I'm skeptical that it'll be a good idea to vote for this man.

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #761 on: February 25, 2016, 04:24:25 PM »
Even if Bernie has 0% chance of actually succeeding at his goals, in terms of being able to negotiate for resolving the status quo, I think he stands a better chance than Hillary.  Hillary is the political establishment and the status quo - she comes out as being moderate-to-left.  Normally, this would be a good thing.  Except the fact that the right is going hardcore right.  When you negotiate, you start out with 100% of what you want and negotiate down until both sides get some of what they want.  The problem we've been having for the last handful of years is that the Republican party has demonstrated a refusal to compromise, having embraced Mitch McConnell's imperative to deny Obama (or any Democrat, really) continued presence in the White House.  Things that should have been a 'no question' pass or renewal have faced uphill battles to pass.  Bernie is so far left that if the Republicans are willing to negotiate, then there is at least a chance of pulling the country in that direction, compared to the moderate-to-right direction we've been going in.

As for the economic plan, the Republicans have a real chance here to deflate Sanders and accomplish what they say they want, but I don't think they'll take it, because it would require them to behave irrationally.  Most people, by and large, don't really care all that much about making millions of dollars a year - they want enough money to be able to afford a house, food on the table, gas in the vehicles, savings...average middle-class (BTW, middle class being 6 figures now?) needs and wants.  I think it was Vekseid who said that those come out to about $70k a year.  (Though that might have changed upwards.)

The question being posed to those people right now is: "Who do you trust to give you the ability to acquire those funds?"  One side says government, the other side says the free market.  What's happened over the last three-quarters of a century or so is that those espousing the former position have very successfully used the bad behavior of corporations and individuals to argue that the free market is corrupt, the game is rigged, you can't trust the big businessmen, all they care about is their bottom dollar.  There's a reason the Corrupt Corporate Executive is a trope!  The solution to the problem, they go on, is to give government power over business - to regulate it, to enforce the laws it passes on it, to be the champion of the people trying to just make a living and go on with their lives.  Trust government.

The free market advocates have been getting their asses kicked in this debate for quite some time, because their rational and self-interested responses to various actions taken by the government have been successfully portrayed (whether or not this is actually true, people believe it's true, and therefore it is) as business refusing to help out the common man.  The free market men have the power to end this debate - but they won't, because they've bought into a very narrow definition of success, a definition that says the more money you have, the more gadgets you've got, the more successful you are, and everyone wants to be successful.  The free market men, if they want to start winning the debate surrounding the trust question, have to stop chasing after higher and higher profits, they have to start bringing back jobs to the US, reverse a lot of the trends that have happened in the last generation or so.  A company that makes $1000 in profit is just as successful as one that makes $1000000 in profit.  The difference is just a handful of zeroes.

Offline Cycle

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #762 on: February 25, 2016, 04:42:19 PM »
Even if Bernie has 0% chance of actually succeeding at his goals, in terms of being able to negotiate for resolving the status quo, I think he stands a better chance than Hillary.  Hillary is the political establishment and the status quo - she comes out as being moderate-to-left.  Normally, this would be a good thing.  Except the fact that the right is going hardcore right.  When you negotiate, you start out with 100% of what you want and negotiate down until both sides get some of what they want.  The problem we've been having for the last handful of years is that the Republican party has demonstrated a refusal to compromise, having embraced Mitch McConnell's imperative to deny Obama (or any Democrat, really) continued presence in the White House.  Things that should have been a 'no question' pass or renewal have faced uphill battles to pass.  Bernie is so far left that if the Republicans are willing to negotiate, then there is at least a chance of pulling the country in that direction, compared to the moderate-to-right direction we've been going in.

I've heard this argument before and it makes no sense to me.  If we assume the Republicans won't negotiate with Hillary, why would we assume they will negotiate with Bernie--who is even further to the left?  If they won't negotiate, then they won't negotiate.  (Also, that theory of negotiation is flawed.  You don't always get more by asking for more from the outset.  Sometimes starting off in a more reasonable position will lower the temperature and induce more cooperation.  Consider what would happen if a landlord asks $100,000 a day rent for a studio apartment...)

Finally, if Bernie really is secretly planning to bend on every point, then really, how is he different from Hillary (or Trump)?  He's planning to end up as a moderate.  And all this "we need a political revolution!" talk is just snake oil...

Online ReijiTabibito

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #763 on: February 25, 2016, 05:11:25 PM »
Because - and I know this isn't going to make any sense either, probably - Hillary is willing to negotiate, and Bernie won't.  This was a major problem of Obama - he was willing to negotiate and be reasonable with people who are being unreasonable.  He did it so that things could actually get done, I get that - but I think Hillary will suffer from the same pitfall.  Bernie, on the other hand, has the conviction and ability to stick to his principles that if the Republicans refuse to compromise with him, then he'll simply walk away from the table, himself.

If we're really going to change the political landscape, then we have to break the Republican party.  They're becoming more entrenched and bunkered-in year after year after year, and they occupy enough of the political apparatus to force things to grind to a halt.  This is because, for all their posturing about wanting to help out the common person, they're really just looking out for themselves.  (Though the Democrats are not largely better in that respect.)  The best way to break the illusion that the Republicans have woven over the last handful of years is to shatter the mirror.  And you don't do that with a feather, you do it with a hammer.

David Frum, who was a speechwriter for Bush in the early years, basically said during one of the debt ceiling crises that the deal the Democrats were proposing - tons of spending cuts in exchange for a few revenue boosts through taxes and closing loopholes - was practically everything the Republicans could want.  If they were a normal political party, he says, then they would not hesitate one second in taking this deal.  But he's not sure that the Republicans are a normal political party anymore.  (http://bigtentrevue.org/2011/07/snatching-defeat-from-the-jaws-of-victory/)

The only real solution - aside from the Republicans waking up and saying "Jesus J Christ, what have we been DOING?!" - is to show, in the starkest terms possible, that Republicans are not willing to engage in the normal routines of governance anymore.  And I can't think of many more ways to do that than to force them into a corner where it's apparent they would not negotiate with...Ronald Reagan, Jesus, pick your usual GOP exemplar.

Offline Cycle

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #764 on: February 25, 2016, 05:30:52 PM »
Bernie, on the other hand, has the conviction and ability to stick to his principles that if the Republicans refuse to compromise with him, then he'll simply walk away from the table, himself.

So we're assuming Bernie won't compromise.  And we believe the Republicans won't compromise.  And Bernie has no plan to break the Republicans. 

So then, nothing Bernie promises will happen. 

That leads me back to being skeptical that voting for him will mean anything.

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #765 on: February 25, 2016, 07:34:45 PM »
I'm really skeptical that this "my way or the highway" strategy from the White House would work, Reiji. They tried to do it in France a few times - France has a political three-branches system that's not so unlike the US, but with even stronger powers for the president, and it simply didn't work. Left-wing presidents tried to act that way tp push through left-wing, social democrat and spending-boost policies in times of economic crisis and high unemployment, Hollande a few years ago and Mitterrand in the early 1980s - and it just ran aground, they had to abandon it and drop most of those ambitions.

And Bernie would be working in an even more toxic and antagonized political climate, and he would have much less solid support from major newspapers and from (I think) his own party than Mitterrand or Hollande had.  :-( (France doesn't have any Fox News, by the way)

It looks really likely that the Reps are going to remain in control of at least the House, doesn't it? Which would ensure that any Dem president would have a similar uphill battle that Obama has had (I'm not saying that there wouldn't be many GOP people in Congress who might be skeptical with Trump, if he should actually win: they must be well aware of how rickety his GOP credentials are!)
« Last Edit: February 25, 2016, 07:43:34 PM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Lord Mayerling

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #766 on: February 25, 2016, 07:58:31 PM »
As reported in the New York Times, an analysis of YouGov data revealed that nearly 20% of Donald Trump supporters disagree with the Emancipation Proclamation. This was the law enacted during the American Civil War that freed slaves in the rebelling states. A further study by New Republic supports this view, and postulates that Donald Trump's candidacy is, far from being a cancer to the Republican Party, but actually the evolutionary product of Republican policy strategy since the 1950s.

"Conservative elites can denounce Trump all they want as a “cancer” or an impostor. In truth, he is their true heir, the beneficiary of the policies the party has pursued for more than half a century."

https://newrepublic.com/article/130039/southern-strategy-made-donald-trump-possible

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #767 on: February 25, 2016, 08:23:18 PM »
So we're assuming Bernie won't compromise.  And we believe the Republicans won't compromise.

Yes, I am making assumptions based on past behavior.  It's what I do when I don't have direct evidence of the thing I am trying to discuss.  It's got as much chance to be right as to be wrong.  Bernie might win on a landslide and the Republicans might wake up and realize the country is with him and they're all going to be ousted unless they start being reasonable.  It is a projection, a guess.

And Bernie has no plan to break the Republicans.

He has no stated plan to break the Republicans.  There's a big difference between not having a plan and not saying what your plan is.  If there's a speech he's given where he has said, explicitly or in some understood language, "I have no plan for dealing with the opposition," then I'd be happy to concede the point.

So then, nothing Bernie promises will happen. 

That leads me back to being skeptical that voting for him will mean anything.

Everyone makes promises they can't keep - for one reason or another.  The difference between Bernie and most of the political establishment is that Bernie will fail trying to keep his word, whereas establishment candidates treat their promises as mere stepping stones to get where they need to go.  They have no intention of keeping their promises, they just say them so people will vote for them.  This is best reflected in the Republican politicians who promise to cut things like food stamps, Medicare/Medicaid, and other government assistance programs.  As the statistics are so fond of showing, there are more white people on government assistance than there are black people.  And a lot of those are people who vote Republican.  The Republicans go forward and say that they're going to cut these programs, but choose not to because they realize - quite simply - that it will affect the people who vote for them, and then they might not be voted in during the next election cycle.  So they make all their promises, and then dump them the minute they walk in the door because to keep those promises would actually harm their re-election chances, which is the goal of the political class these days.

And we cannot judge whether a candidate is worthy enough to receive our vote simply on the basis of their ability to guarantee that their campaign promises will be kept.  By that logic, then someone who promises to change nothing would win hands down every time, because it's a lot easier to guarantee that nothing changes as opposed to changing some things.  Or someone who is entirely vague about what they're actually going to do, never actually makes any promises and keeps everything cloaked in abstract language.

...oh, yeah.


We have to realize that everything we're promised, we're not going to get.  If we wanted someone to guarantee the promises we made, we would not have a form of government where negotiation is required in order to govern.


I'm really skeptical that this "my way or the highway" strategy from the White House would work, Reiji. They tried to do it in France a few times - France has a political three-branches system that's not so unlike the US, but with even stronger powers for the president, and it simply didn't work. Left-wing presidents tried to act that way tp push through left-wing, social democrat and spending-boost policies in times of economic crisis and high unemployment, Hollande a few years ago and Mitterrand in the early 1980s - and it just ran aground, they had to abandon it and drop most of those ambitions.

And Bernie would be working in an even more toxic and antagonized political climate, and he would have much less solid support from major newspapers and from (I think) his own party than Mitterrand or Hollande had.  :-( (France doesn't have any Fox News, by the way)

It looks really likely that the Reps are going to remain in control of at least the House, doesn't it? Which would ensure that any Dem president would have a similar uphill battle that Obama has had (I'm not saying that there wouldn't be many GOP people in Congress who might be skeptical with Trump, if he should actually win: they must be well aware of how rickety his GOP credentials are!)

The path I proposed is not my ideal one, either.  In my ideal world, politicians would wake up tomorrow and start doing their jobs to serve this country rather than serve themselves; they would stop taking money from corporate donors to aid in their re-election campaigns and rely on building the goodwill of the people back home (through doing their jobs) in order to achieve those results; they would recognize that Congress is not a place you're supposed to spend your entire working life; they would stop being politicians and start being statesmen again.  But I don't believe that's going to happen, because we cannot expect a bunch of egocentrists to think about anyone other than themselves.

What I proposed is basically a Big Red Button.  If that path is taken, the question will not be 'will we crash' but 'how hard?'  But sometimes you need to shake the heavens; sometimes you need to wake the giant.  There is a trope - the Godzilla Threshold - which says:

"...every so often, the time comes when the threat is so great, the situation has gone so horribly wrong, that there is no proportionate response. When circumstances are so dire as to justify the use of any and every thing that might solve it, no matter how reckless, nonsensical, or horrific, regardless of cost. When even the summoning of Godzilla, king of the monsters and patron saint of collateral damage, could not possibly make the crisis any worse."

Is what I've proposed an extreme solution?  Yes.  Undoubtedly.  But the problems we are facing - corruption in government prime among them - are defying the usual solutions we have to such things.  And some of us are even refusing to pick up and use the tools we have to solve the problem, simply because to use them would be to go against their own stated ideology. 

Offline Cycle

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #768 on: February 25, 2016, 08:43:09 PM »
He has no stated plan to break the Republicans.  There's a big difference between not having a plan and not saying what your plan is.

From where I stand, there's no difference.  Having no plan and not admitting you have no plan looks the same to me.  There is a problem that Bernie must overcome to deliver on his promises.  He isn't stupid.  He knows this.  Yet he refuses to articulate a plan to deal with the problem.  That, to me, is a concession he has no plan to deal with the problem.

Everyone makes promises they can't keep - for one reason or another.  The difference between Bernie and most of the political establishment is that Bernie will fail trying to keep his word, whereas establishment candidates treat their promises as mere stepping stones to get where they need to go.

If the end result is no change, then there is no difference.  I see a lot of people supporting Bernie because they believe (hope) he will do something for them:  free college, medicare for all, $15 minimum wage, tax the billionaires.  Their belief is worthless if the man making the promises can't deliver.  Worse, if the man making them knows he can't deliver--as appears to be the case--then that man really doesn't deserve my support. 

Indeed, it makes him no different from Trump.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2016, 08:44:45 PM by Cycle »

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #769 on: February 25, 2016, 08:49:02 PM »
From where I stand, there's no difference.  Having no plan and not admitting you have no plan looks the same to me.  There is a problem that Bernie must overcome to deliver on his promises.  He isn't stupid.  He knows this.  Yet he refuses to articulate a plan to deal with the problem.  That, to me, is a concession he has no plan to deal with the problem.

If the end result is no change, then there is no difference.  I see a lot of people supporting Bernie because they believe (hope) he will do something for them:  free college, medicare for all, $15 minimum wage, tax the billionaires.  Their belief is worthless if the man making the promises can't deliver.  Worse, if the man making them knows he can't deliver--as appears to be the case--then that man really doesn't deserve my support. 

Indeed, it makes him no different from Trump.

Assuming he has a plan, it would be foolish of him to lay it out in public where the GOP can see it, and if he is going to be a threat in the general election or after it, take pre-emptive steps to counter him. They are for all intents and purposes the enemy for him; he has to accomplish his goals in spite of the opposing party, not with them, so it's tactically and strategically sound to keep his cards close to the chest until he's ready to play them.

For all we know, his plan is "get elected, spend two years visibly and publicly failing to get anything done because the GOP house is obstructing him, go whole-hog PR blitz for the next House/Senate election cycle with the obstructionism of his opponents as supporting evidence". It's not a great plan, but it's possible - unless the GOP gets wind of it ahead of time, letting them spike it with their own pre-emptive counter-campaigning.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2016, 08:52:01 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline consortium11

Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #770 on: February 25, 2016, 09:33:34 PM »
The difference between Bernie and most of the political establishment is that Bernie will fail trying to keep his word, whereas establishment candidates treat their promises as mere stepping stones to get where they need to go.  They have no intention of keeping their promises, they just say them so people will vote for them.

Sanders himself had a near miraculous about-turn on immigration once he was no longer campaigning in an almost entirely white state while being funded by large unions which oppose more relaxed immigration (and amnesty) laws (on the basis that they drive wages down) and was instead campaigning on a national ticket where being seen as anti-immigrant on the Democratic side of the fence is seen as a death sentence.

I don't want to go over the top in my criticism of Sanders on that; he generally has stuck to his principles. But he's a career politician and part of being a career politician is doing the somewhat unseemly part of politics. And that includes changing your positions when political advantageous.

In my ideal world, politicians would wake up tomorrow and start doing their jobs to serve this country rather than serve themselves; they would stop taking money from corporate donors to aid in their re-election campaigns and rely on building the goodwill of the people back home (through doing their jobs) in order to achieve those results; they would recognize that Congress is not a place you're supposed to spend your entire working life; they would stop being politicians and start being statesmen again.  But I don't believe that's going to happen, because we cannot expect a bunch of egocentrists to think about anyone other than themselves.

You know this basically sums up Trump right?

While there's no doubt that at least part (and I imagine a pretty significant part) of his Presidential run is to massage his rather large ego, Trump would have a far easier, happier and likely monetarily more successful life if he hadn't run; he's doing anything but serving himself. Hell, he's basically the only candidate who will be materially worse even if he does win due to the amount of his own money he's put into his campaign; other candidates are getting to play with other people's money.
Linked to the above, virtually no money from corporate donors (far less than Sanders has received from the unions and vastly under what other candidates have got from corporations)
Hasn't spent his entire working life in congress (or even politics... unlike Sanders)
He may not be statesmanlike but he's taken the lead on issues such as immigration and China's aggressive economic policy. Hell, he stood up in the middle of the Republican debate, said the Iraq War was a mistake, called out George Bush and is still the front runner.

There's also the nebulous definition of "doing your job". Take pork barrel spending for example... "bridges to nowhere" and the like. Almost no-one likes it, it seems corrupt and ridiculous and a prime example of, depending on your take on such things, the government being far too large or spending it on the wrong projects. Yet if you're a Representative and you can get the Federal Government to invest $300 million in your state next year, providing jobs and income to thousands of people you represent, isn't "doing your job" (i.e. trying to make life better for your constituents) getting that money, even if it is being spent on a bridge that no-one will use? Around half a billion dollars have been spent over the past couple of years on upgrades to the Abrams tank that the army don't want and would prefer to see spent somewhere else... seemingly a perfect example of politicians not doing their job well. But if you're a politician in Ohio, home to the Lima Army Tank Plant (the sole producer of Abrams) and you know that such spending guarantees jobs, wages and investment in Ohio which will benefit the people you represent, isn't it your job to fight for that money... and to get even more if possible?

I'm also not sure how a wish for politicians to "do their job" interacts with your other stated point that it was a problem that Obama negotiated and compromised in the name of getting things done, rather than making a stand and refusing to budge at all; isn't part of doing your job as a politican in a system like the US's compromising and negotiating to get things done rather than finding a hill to die on?



On the wider point about how Sanders will deal with the Republicans and trying to "break" them, let's remember this isn't a one way street. The Republicans have a decent chance of retaining both House and Senate in the coming elections which mean they're the ones in the driving seat when it comes to putting legislation through. Yes, they may use that power to block any of Sanders suggestions that he gets the minority Democrats to propose... but they'll likely also use it to put through their own legislation, forcing either the Democrats to stall and filibuster or Sanders to veto. One can hardly argue that it's the other side ruining politics when you're also stalling and then vetoing any legislation they put through.

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #771 on: February 25, 2016, 09:46:04 PM »
I just watched part of the MSNBC Bernie interview.  Chris Matthews asked Bernie how he is going to accomplish his goals:  that is, how's he going to get 60 votes in the Senate.  Bernie first tries going back to his talking points.  Then when pinned down, Bernie finally answers with:  once I'm President, I'm going to rally millions of people "to demand [members of Congress] vote the right way."  (See "I'm not an inside-the-Beltway guy" clip, starting at 7:30, and especially at 10:15.)

That's Bernie's plan, apparently.  To get people to demand that their Representatives and Senators vote his way once he's President.

Oy.


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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #772 on: February 25, 2016, 09:59:40 PM »
Yeah, Trump has already dubbed Sanders a communist (though without mentioning him by name - he's doing the Julius Caesar thing!). That's going to get repeated ten thousand times over if the two were to face off in the general election.  ^_ ^

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #773 on: February 25, 2016, 10:08:37 PM »
I'm wondering what's going to happen to all the SuperPAC money if we have Trump v. Sanders.  XD 

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Re: The Big Thread For the USA 2016 Presidential Candidates
« Reply #774 on: February 25, 2016, 10:18:54 PM »
A really scary thought would be if it's Sanders and Trump - and some independent candidate (like Ross Perot in the nineties) who would pull more of the democrat vote to him than from the GOP voter base). That way, Trump could actually score a comfortable win despite just getting around 40-45 percent of the popular vote.  :-(