Sorry I've been AFI (Away From Internet). Let's shoot through a list of must-read pieces -- and along the way, I'll add a few snarky comments...
Are Bernie supporters more racist?
Heretofore, I haven't criticized the Berners on this score. But this piece
in the Daily Beast is pretty astounding...
While thankfully, I have someone who works for me and wades through much of my mail and social media so I can spend as much time as possible writing (and maintaining my sanity and sense of humor), for more than a week Sanders supporters flooded my accounts with nonstop accusations—one more over the top than the next. I am “a disgrace,” “a liar,” a secret paid Hillary Clinton “mole” or “shill.” Apparently it is beyond the realm of possibility that I, as a free-thinking individual with access to polling data and a fairly vigorous intellect of my own may not consider their chosen candidate a strong one. Simply not possible. After all, as one white Sanders supporter informed me: “You need to be better informed on the needs of Black people.” Thanks for the tip!
I should mention that the writer, Keli Goff, is black.
But there were a couple of messages that made their way to me that were particularly troubling. One Sanders supporter pleaded on Facebook for others to stop attacking me and try to “inform me” (Again this denotes I couldn’t possibly be educated because I don’t agree with them, but at least he sounded civil). To which another replied, “She chooses to ignore the issues and work for her own personal interest. If that is the case than to me everything is allowed as long as it’s not physical violence.”
Remember how Marxists used to offer strained rationales as to why the college-educated "vanguard of the proletariat" knew the interests of working people better than working people did? Here we have the same dynamic, except we have the extra ingredient of truly obnoxious and unforgivable racial condescension.
So when news broke that a prominent white, male liberal blogger known for his appreciation of Sanders and disdain for Hillary Clinton had called Neera Tanden, one of the most prominent women of color in progressive politics a “scumbag” I was not surprised.Who needs a party? BernieBullies think that they can win the day without a party.
And when I learned Sanders supporters had sent death threats to a female Democratic Party official because they were outraged at what occurred at the Nevada state convention, I was not surprised. And when Bernie Sanders declined to denounce such behavior vigorously, I was also not surprised.
Yeah. Sure. That's
the way to pass universal health care legislation: Make yourself hated by Republicans and Democrats.
If Bernie were serious about wanting to flip the superdelegates, he would not be doing everything possible to piss them off.
For some Democrats, Bernie Sanders’ latest gambit — challenging Donald Trump to a debate to cap all debates — is the last straw.
“Bullshit,” said Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia. “That confirms what we’ve been saying. Why would you expect Bernie should be considerate or be nice or be working to bring everyone together? Why? He’s not a Democrat.”
“It’s peculiar,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio). “It’s all about Bernie trying to get the advantage in California. It’s not going to work.”
Look, it's simple: In order to understand what is going on, you just have to make the conceptual leap that Bernie is secretly working for Trump
. What we are seeing is a replay of 1980, when John Anderson was secretly working for Reagan. (By the way, am I the only one who recalls the Reagan/Anderson debate?)
Whatever caused Bernie to hide his tax returns has rendered him blackmailable.
I realize that most people will condemn this idea as one of those awful, awful "conspiracy theories," but this theory has the virtue of explaining a whole hell of a lot. In science, a theory has value if it is predictive. My theory predicts that Bernie will do whatever it takes to siphon votes away from Hillary in the general election -- and so far, I've been proven right at every turn. Manchin and Brown seem astonished by Bernie's antics: I am not.
Just allow yourself to think one "forbidden" thought -- Bernie is a liar whose stated goals are not his actual goals
-- and everything becomes comprehensible.
Let's look at another example
“The tone of Bernie Sanders in the last three weeks to a month has been horrible and destructive and mean-spirited and arrogant,” said John Smart, 53, who lives in Los Angeles and works in the film business. “And I don’t know what he’s up to. … I think it’s completely ego at this point.”
You see? The poor man is confused. I'm not even slightly confused.
And I don't think that this is about ego. John Anderson was not an egomaniac in 1980.
(Here's another example, which will be obscure to many of you: L.A. Mayor Sam Yorty -- a truly vile
individual -- joined the Democratic primaries briefly in 1972, just to draw votes away from Edmund Muskie, the guy Nixon didn't want to run against. That classic piece of ratfucking was engineered by the people who taught Roger Stone, the man who will make Trump president. What's past is present.)
As Josh Marshall
points out, if Bernie really cared about defeating Trump, he would not seek a debate.
Indeed, does anyone alive believe this helps elect a Democratic president? And if not, what is the rationale? Perhaps it's a wash. Sideshows in May probably don't have that much effect. But it certainly does not help.
It is only a spectacle by which both candidates, Trump and Sanders, can indulge their tacitly-agreed common interest in sidelining and diminishing Hillary Clinton, who of course will be the nominee.
Poor Josh! He seems so confused. I'm not even slightly confused.
Speaking of common interests:
Has Bernie Sanders ever commented on the millions he has received from Karl Rove's PAC, American Crossroads
In the wake of Clinton’s close Nevada win, Crossroads claimed credit for driving her numbers down in favor of Sanders.Here's
“American Crossroads and Bernie Sanders helped Nevada caucus-goers see right through Hillary Clinton’s manufactured zeal on immigration reform after spewing virulent Trump-like rhetoric—and that one-two punch shaved Clinton’s 50-point lead a year ago to a slim, single digit win,” Steven Law, Crossroads CEO and president, said in a statement.
Crossroads is one of several groups that has released ads that have been aimed at branding Sanders as the only true progressive in the race—a strategy the Vermont senator’s campaign also embraces.
“If it helps push the needle so that she loses a state, and she comes out a weakened candidate, then fantastic,” said Ian Prior, communications director for Crossroads.
the Crossroads website. Sample headline: "Saudi mega donor to Clinton Foundation subject of tell-all book by ex-wife." As always, the Rovian PAC pretends that the Foundation is a slush fund for the personal use of the Clinton family.
Not true. It's a charity.
All of the usual charity watchdogs have watched it and dogged it, and they report that the Foundation is as clean as a whistle.
If bad guys have donated to charity -- good.
Nobody minded when bad guys donated to charity in Guys and Dolls
, did they?
Jane, his wife.
The Atlantic has an interesting piece up on how Jane Sanders destroyed Burlington College
. Most of it, you probably already know. But there are some nuggets of new stuff...
But several questions at a press conference held by the school’s president and dean elicited surprising replies. Asked whether Jane Sanders was to blame for the closure, President Carol Moore and Dean Coralee Holm declined to answer, even as they acknowledged that that the college’s press release, in naming the land purchase as the reason for the closure, implicitly pointed a finger in her direction. Smith and Holm also declined to comment on whether there was a federal investigation into the college, or whether the FBI or other authorities had interviewed faculty, staff, or administrators, or if they’d sent any subpoenas. Those “no comments” may raise eyebrows, since it’s generally assumed that if the answer was no, administrators would simply have said so.Did Jane spill the beans?
The tense relations between Sanders and fellow members of the Senate Democratic Caucus also raises questions as to what his interactions will be like once he returns to the Senate.
Asked during a brief interview this week at the Capitol when her husband would return to the Senate, Jane Sanders responded, “After the 8th.” But she quickly backtracked and said, “I don’t know.” California and a host of other states are holding their contests on June 7. A Sanders campaign spokesman did not immediately return a request for comment to clarify Jane Sanders’ comments.
Meaning: The Bernie crusade finally ends after the California vote, if Hillary pulls out a win. I'm betting that she will not. (As you know, I always bet on the gloomier prospect.) I hope that when Bernie finally does return to the Hill, his fellow Dems use his office door as a urinal.
Bernie's free ride.
I missed this fine piece
by Michael Tomasky, published a few days ago.
There’s one simple reason Sanders polls better against Trump than Clinton does, which is that no one (yet) knows anything negative about him. He’s gotten the freest ride a top-tier presidential candidate has ever gotten. The freest, bar none.
While he’s all but called Clinton a harlot, she’s barely said a word about him, at least since the very early days of the contest. And while Republicans have occasionally jibed at him, like Lindsey Graham’s actually quite funny remark that Sanders “went to the Soviet Union on his honeymoon and I don’t think he ever came back,” in far more serious ways, Republican groups have worked to help Sanders weaken Clinton.
That would change on a dime if he became the nominee. I don’t think they’d even have to go into his radical past, although they surely would. Michelle Goldberg of Slate has written good pieces on this. He took some very hard-left and plainly anti-American positions. True, they might not matter to anyone under 45, but more than half of all voters are over 45.
But if I were a conservative making anti-Sanders ads, I’d stick to taxes. An analysis earlier this year from the Tax Policy Center found that his proposals would raise taxes in the so-called middle quintile (40-60 percent) by $4,700 a year. A median household is around $53,000. Most such households pay an effective tax rate of around 11 percent, or $5,800. From $5,800 to $10,500 constitutes a 45 percent increase.The emails.
Some of you have wondered what I have to say about that. There's nothing to add to the points I've made in many previous posts: This whole story is crap
. Hillary did not reveal classified information to anyone in these emails. Her reasons for setting up a personal system are outlined superbly by Riverdaughter
Last week, in another unguarded moment, the Slate Political Gabfest trio revealed what the deal was with Hillary’s emails. Go to about the 21 minute mark of their latest episode “I Threw a Chair in Reno Just to Watch it Fly” where they start to discuss why it is that The Donald can get away with not revealing his tax returns but Hillary damaged herself seriously because she didn’t want journalists filing FOIA requests to go sifting through her emails to find stupid little things and turns of phrases that could be made into gigantic, distracting nothings.
They sound like whiny little children. They’re going to camp on these emails and the unreleased transcripts of her speeches to Goldman Sachs and they readily acknowledge that all they and their journalist droogs are going to do is make a mountain of something as trivial as “thank you all for allowing me to talk to you today”.
It reminds me of the papparazzi that regarded it as their right to follow Princess Diana around. Everything she did was documented to death. Literally.
I'll add that one main purpose of the separate server was to allow Hillary to communicate with Sidney Blumenthal and Tyler Drumheller. The Israel-firsters fear the Blumenthal name more than any other, while Drumheller was the former CIA guy who blew the whistle on the Curveball deception, thereby making him an enemy of all neocons.
Get it? Do you finally, finally
The fact that Hillary set up a private line of communication with those two gives us an excellent reason to trust
her. What she says in public to groups like AIPAC is just political necessity. The semi-covert information flow from Blumenthal and Drumheller is key
, and it offers us reason to hope that we might get better from Hillary than we got from Obama.