We'd do it with basically any establishment candidate the DNC put forward, especially if they rigged the election in favor of that person the way they have with Hillary. It's about a refusal to settle for the two party system that doesn't serve us. It's about living up to the promise of a political revolution we gave when we threw in our lot with a guy who only showed single digit numbers in basically every state but his own. It about making it absolutely clear that we're not going to allow the DNC to be hijacked by neo-liberals that are two steps away from Republicans any more. We're tired of voting for the lesser of two evils, which is exactly what a vote for Hillary is.
As stated previously, Hillary has been the stated successor to Obama, and the Democratic-controlled media outlets have had eight years to build her up as the next candidate. I don't remember where I saw it, but there was a very apt analogy I read for this election the other day: the election is a baseball game, and the goal is to circle the bases and score. On the Democratic side, guys like Bernie, Jim Webb, Martin O'Malley, all start off at home plate.
Hillary gets to start on third base.
The fact that Bernie has stayed in this long, forced Clinton to fight this hard for the nomination, and that's STILL NOT OVER, tells me two things. One: the pure strength of Bernie's message. I listened to some of the other candidates when they were still in the race, and I can tell you that if Bernie hadn't run, I think the Democratic primary election would have been decided by the end of March, rather than it still being a bit of a toss-up. Two:
I mentioned it before and I'll say it again: Hillary is not really a liberal. She's only more liberal
than guys like Cruz.
She's backed literally every major bad decision (Iraq, NAFTA, the TPP, etc) and been on the wrong side of history up until the time it was politically expedient for her to be on the right one (civil rights issues - no one talks about the fact that she campaigned for a segregationist, gun laws, gay marriage, etc). And instead of making an honest attempt to win us over and show that she really IS "on our side" as she likes to put it, she belittles us as voters. We're "unrealistic" for wanting universal health care. We're "unrealistic" for wanting public colleges to be free. And for no other reason than the fact that we're voting for Bernie and not her, she accuses us of not doing our own research. Never mind the fact that the independents... who make up HALF the voters in the country and are heavily swayed toward Bernie, are historically the most well informed demographic out there because we aren't beholden to a party color.
Expect those bad decisions to come out in the general election. Bernie's been playing nice and refusing to use attack ads and the like, instead falling back on the strength (and goddamn is it strong) of his message. The Republicans will not be as kind, especially if Trump secures the nomination. If I were him, I would attack her relentlessly on those fronts, knowing full well all she can't criticize me for my own voting record, because I don't have one. That's not to say she can't attack him, but I think he will have a much easier time of it than she will.
The growing attitude of the political establishment (left and right) has been one of authoritarian sentiment: the American people are morons, they don't know what they're talking about, they should just leave all the politics to us. That argument might actually stand, if I didn't believe that the parties have been complicit in trying to engineer a populace that, to paraphrase George Carlin, are just smart enough to work the voting machines, but just dumb enough not to know what it all actually means.
That is an attitude of dis
enfranchisement, that is a re
gressive stance - pushing us back rather than forward.
I switched my registration from independent to democrat to vote for Bernie. Once this primary is over, if he loses, I'll be switching back to independent and I will be writing him in. Why? Because I refuse to abandon my morals. I meant what I said when I said I want a political revolution. Hillary cannot and will not ever give us that, it would mean she loses most of her power. It means her bread and butter, her way of life will no longer fly. I refuse to allow the threats of a Trump presidency to force me to abandon what I stand for. I don't owe Hillary or the DNC anything. Early polls, before primary voting even began, showed Bernie was the better candidate to send up against anyone on the Republican side. The DNC and their bought and paid for corporate media ignored that and stacked the race against Bernie, assuming we'd all fall in line once Bernie lost the race. It's on them if Trump or Cruz wins. Not us. We owe them nothing because they've done nothing to represent us.
"What have you done to represent us and our interests?"That
must be the driving question - the only
question - behind any person who wishes to vote. You can excuse people who haven't done this sort of thing before, but for professional politicians, their voting record should be the key piece of evidence in the process of deciding if you're going to vote for them. Speeches are nice, but I would be voting for Bernie even if he was perpetually tongue-tied and Hillary was about as silver as a gun loaded for bear against a werewolf. People can hide what they say, but hiding what you do - when it's a matter of public record - is a lot harder, and a lot more telling.
And the truth is that the political establishment has done nothing for us - they've spent the last few decades carving out little fiefdoms for themselves, at the expense of doing their job. So, as you've said, we owe them precisely JACK.
Completely agreed. I think the republicans are doing it on their own though, and I only have one vote, so I'm choosing to work on the party that's a bit too happy being stagnant. Ideally, if Bernie doesn't take the nomination, I'd like to see both parties fall apart because they both lose a ton of support (Remember that Trump supporters and Bernie supporters have the biggest, most important issue in common: they both want big money out of politics) because they pushed their establishment nominees, and a strong, single minded third party came together. It's how we got rid of the Wig party. I'd love to see it happen again. I just worry most Americans are too complacent and too easily bullied by fear tactics ("If you don't vote for Hillary you're giving the presidency to Trump!" is a fear tactic, pure and simple).
The Republicans are self-destructing because they no longer represent a legitimate political entity - they've basically become a holding company for a handful of diminishing populations that wield influence disproportionate to their numbers: Wall Street & the militant religious right, for examples. I've listened to various commentators on the Republican side of the election, and most of them have been comfortable saying that the Republicans are on their last legs - if Trump or Cruz get elected to the office, it's the end of the party NOW; if someone like Paul Ryan gets the nomination in a contested convention, it's going to be merely SOON. After they lost to Obama in '08, they had a chance to pull back and do some soul-searching and figure out a new direction to take the party in to ensure their survival. They didn't take it seriously, instead trying things like putting Marco Rubio up to win the Hispanic vote, or copy-catting Obama with Herman Cain and Ben Carson - things that meant nothing, because all they were doing was giving the same philosophy a more racially-friendly face. And now it may destroy them.
Hillary's campaign lives and breathes on two things: fear of what another Republican in the White House might do, and Democrats who aren't willing to challenge their own party allegiance. I have a friend who I discuss the election with - he's been a big fan of the Green Party and Jill Stein for years
. He's told me more than once that if the Green Party ever became more than just an American third party, he'd dump the Democrats and go for them. But they don't have any influence and power, so he stays where he is.
One of the more common fear tactics I've seen used against Trump is the 'A Republican will destroy the country!' No, he won't. You know how I know?
Because for the last eight years
, all I've been hearing is 'Obama will destroy the country! Obama will destroy the country! The sky is falling, the sky is falling!'
We may call him the most powerful man in the world, but the President does not have that kind of power. If he did
, he would be a dictator, not a President.
Whether or not Hillary succeeds - both in the general and in the remaining primaries - depends on whether or not people realize that, and whether or not the remaining people in the race start hitting her back for stuff she's done, when all she can talk about is what they might
The theory is that you can tell something about a candidate's views, goals, and ideologies by which party they are associated with. For example, the Federalists, who believed that the executive branch needed to be stronger, and the Whigs, who believed it was already quite strong enough (and could even stand to lose some power.) This is why the option of voting 'straight ticket' would even be a possible strategy: even if you didn't know the actual stand of a particular candidate on the issues, you could be reasonably sure that they would line up with the others you'd picked.
The problem with that - party being a stand-in for what a particular candidate believes - is that the parties have swapped around and changed sides and things have stayed a bit muddled since then. As an example, during the Jim Crow era, blacks tended to vote more for Republicans than for Democrats, whereas Southerners hated the 'Party of Lincoln.' Once JFK, LBJ, and the Civil Rights Act was passed, that changed - the socially conservative (read: racist) 'Dixiecrats' jumped ship, refusing to vote again for the man who had outlawed segregation. The Dixiecrats voted largely for George Wallace in the '68 election, and then were picked up by Nixon during his re-election bid in '72. They've been there ever since.
You know all that screaming about Republican voter suppression in the South? Laws that disproportionately disenfranchise blacks and other typical Democratic voters? That's your Dixiecrats at work, right there. They might be dead or dying, but that doesn't mean they gone.
Back to the main point - the party label is just that, a label. And a label is only good if you can understand what it means. As an example: I can pick up a jar of peanut butter, read the ingredients, and understand what goes into it. I can do that because, as a trained chemist, I know what the various chemical terminologies on the jar mean. Your average person can't do that, so they don't understand. Of course, with the parties today, it's less a case of unclear label and more a case of they ripped the label off and are hiding it...