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Democrats – Lemmings in Search of a Cliff: Why You Shouldn’t Bet the Ranch on 2018


#1

Democrats – Lemmings in Search of a Cliff: Why You Shouldn’t Bet the Ranch on 2018

John Atcheson

Republicans should be on the run. Trumpcare is toxic, the White House stumbles from disaster to disaster, Trump's budget is a giant slap in the face to the people who voted for him, and Russiagate just gets worse and worse.

But Democrats—rather than catching what should be a progressive tsunami—are acting like lemmings in search of a cliff. Here are the details.

The lesson from 2016 should be clear


#2

Exactly why I re-registered as an independent several months after the elections and still no lights go in the DNC. They are incapable of changing just like the Trump voters, of course, not all Trump voters as I am sure there were many Bernie supporters who went for Trump rather the queen of DNC Hillary. I held my nose.


#3

Atcheson nails it in this article! He also nails the old guard Dem elite to the wall. The Dems are closing ranks and saying there is only us or the Repubs but America wants democracy instead of the two political parties telling us that we have no choice but to vote for their choices.

Many Americans think that the two party system is part of the Constitution or the Bill of Rights or somehow there is a law putting the government in the hands of the 'can't get rid of them' political parties - the Dems and Repubs!

If Bernie runs, America will vote for him and I hope he realizes that fact. Even if the Dems and Repubs both fight against him, America would still choose to elect Bernie Sanders whether he calls himself an independent or whatever. In fact he would win in a landslide!

We are sick of these two corrupt parties destroying the best of this country and its people ...well maybe not destroying all of its people...just 99% of them!


#4

sums up my thoughts! Just had to register D so I can vote in the June elections in Maine but I will return to my I status as soon as possible. The entrenched must go or they will lose every thinking liberal, progressive, dem/soc and young person.


#6

Thanks, John Atcheson.

Rather than working on platform and policies to promote economic and social justice, environmental sustainability, domestic and international peace, the Democrat power structure is embracing: elite private capitalism; campaign funding by wealth donors; domestic and international espionage; and war-mongering militarism.

Unsurprisingly and most deservedly, they will not achieve the great electoral victories they are hoping for in 2018. It is unlikely that they will be able to blame their failures, in 2018, on Putin. More likely, they will lash out against progressives and anyone who dares to question the Democrats right leaning agenda including, I suspect, those of us engaged in grassroots community organizing.

For those engaged in such community based organizing, lets get ready for increased efforts by the Democrat power structure to co-opt, undermine, or denigrate our efforts.


#7

This article gives a clear, if unspoken, case for leaving the Democratic Party for the Green Party, which I, and millions of other disgusted progressives and Berniecrats have already done. They are not going to change folks. They are owned and totally corrupted by their own group of billionaires, led by extreme Zionist Haim Saban, the largest donor to both the DNC and the Clinton Priorities USA Super PAC. Get a clue. We cannot influence or change them. We must therefore just leave them to die and go the way of the Whigs. The narrow victory by that fascist thug in the Montana Congressional special election last night goes a long way to show just how impotent and facile Democrats are. His festering presence in the House for next the 18 months should serve as a daily reminder that we need a new progressive party representing real, ordinary Americans that cannot be bought or corrupted. Please join me in making a revamped Green Party our new home. #Demexit 2017!


#8

Until there is a 12 step program to shake corporate money addiction the DLC won't change.


#9

This is a breath of fresh air!

I love the bit about the Center for American Progress not even inviting Bernie.

Frankly, I think Bernie is a little like "St. John, the Baptist", an important precursor but I think it will take solid outsiders to bring disenfranchised young people and WORKERS back to the political system.

Just great to see someone saying the things that are said here.


#10

It will take some years before the true understanding of just how much the Dems betrayed the spirit of democracy this last election. They knew that America wanted to elect Bernie. Nevertheless they arrogantly sabotaged his run and thereby helped create the Trump candidacy. When the 'Repubs in disarray' saw that the Dems were betraying their front runner and their base, they quickly reorganized from their crash and burn clown car absurdity and got behind their front runner with new life! They had nearly resigned themselves to losing until they saw the Dems weren't supporting their front runner. The sensed a big opening and the result is now recognized as a historic blunder for America... Trump!

The Dems literally sabotaged democracy. Someday the true sense of that betrayal of the core principle of America - democracy - will become part of history. We are too close to it right now but years later, historians will see this last election as a lesson of history. It was that shameful. The democrats did not trust democracy.


#11

The is no reason to believe that Sanders would have won against Trump nor other Sanders-like candidates (or in the case of the UK, political parties) will win against a hard-right candidate or party under the current public mood. All the right wing opponent has to do is say "he will raise you taxes and give you hard-earned money to the lazy poor" "He will be soft of terrorism" "War on Coal!" War on Business! and especially, "Willie Horton!!!" and now "lying snowflake news reporters!" and the progressive candidate will lose every time.

The results of yesterday's Montana election, and across the pond the almost certain Labour Party losses on June 8 (and the probable ejection of Corbyn from the leadership afterward) are realistic tests of the "candidates to the left of, and distance themselves from, their party's mainstream can win" hypothesis. And the results are not what we would like.

The solution: Set electoral politics aside for now except as a strategic tool (yes, this means voting for Democrats in most cases), while we organize, organize, organize!


#12

Once again we all must bare witness to the failed ethos that was Clintonianism. Their acolytes now attempt to continue to steer the party without a rudder, clinging to false belief that you can be fiscally conservative and socially liberal at the same time.
Poppycock.
Unless the democrats can somehow scrub the Clinton scum from their shoes, along with their ideology, they are doomed to fail in 2018.


#13

Yes, angry voters are flocking to town hall meetings, but note that they are not flocking to their local Democratic headquarters to volunteer or register as Ds. Yes, there will be a percentage of voters who vote Democrat to protest Trump and the Republicans in 2018, but it wasn't enough in 2016 and it won't be enough in 2018. It's going to take much more than another laughable Sanders-Perez unity tour to ever win back voters after decades of abuse and neglect they have suffered under both Democrats and Republicans.

While I have always appreciated Sanders for his positions on domestic policy, his continued unquestioning and never critical support for the Democratic party as a way of stopping Trump is misguided and counterproductive and does nothing to restore the credibility that he and the few lukewarm progressives within the party lost when they blindly backed Clinton. Voters now want action and proof. The "trust us" bus left long, ago. Unless Sanders and the Democrats accept that, 2018 will be another loss.


#14

You are rewriting history although not quite Orwellian, you rely on people not remembering clearly. Suffice to say, Sanders was sabotaged and even so, he would have taken the vast majority of independent voters.

You obviously have forgotten that or are relying on statistical hindsight (considering only Dem voters but not independents). Nor are you considering the negative reaction generated by the shenanigans of the DNC in voters. If Sanders had had the backing of the party like any front runner should have gotten ( the Dems knowingly backed an unpopular candidate - Hillary, counting on the anybody except the Repubs attitude), he would have had all of Hillary's votes plus a huge number of voters who stayed home rather than vote for her or Trump.


#15

The state conventions should stay interesting, if progressives are allowed in the doors.


#16

"This kind of alienation explains how Trump got elected by less than 27% of the eligible voters."

This suggests a common, but dangerous assumption. Yes, the losing side wants to make the loss look not so bad. On the other hand, it dismisses the role that Klan culture, which is enormous in numbers and effect, had in the elections of Trump and many other Republicans.

The Dems do need to address their party's shortcomings, but we also need to address the dark side of the country as a whole.


#17

It appears that it is you who are not relying on memory - McGovern, Dukaikas, and numerous other left-of-center vs. right wing Republican contests at the US congressional, and state level since then. And independents? There is not a case in history of an independent on the left ever getting more than 5 percent of the vote.

Times may soon change - particularly as the democraphic hump of hard-right middle-aged USAns nurtured on the mothers milk of Ronald Reagan and sustained by Rush Limbaugh, starts to die off, but that time has not come yet.


#18

There's plenty of reason to believe Sanders would have won against Trump. All the polls taken early on showed he had double digit leads over Trump. And he beat the other Republicans in the field as well. Hillary lost to most of them and beat Trump only narrowly, and within the margin of error. There were a lot of Republicans who would have voted for Sanders. At his rally in my very red state, there was a sign "Republicans for Bernie".
Now, whether he would have been permitted the win is another story. Even in Montana, who knows what the vote really was. When the software that counts our votes is proprietary and can't be verified in many, if not most, instances, it hardly matters who actually wins. Until we clean up our elections system we'll never really know who wins.


#19

Those polls were all taken during the period of the primaries, and before the Republicans with their enormous media and financial resources would have directed their campaigns at Sanders (An addition to my previous comment: "He honeymooned in the communist Soviet Union!!!") Dukakis was expected to easily beat GHW Bush too - until "Willie Horton!!!" and "Tax-and-spend-liberal!!". Nothing has changed since then - except that USAns have moved even further right, are at least as racist, and are even more susceptible to media (and now internet) manipulation.

We can only make progress if we a scientific, reality-based view of our challenges. Sure, it would have been far better to have had Sanders as the Democratic presidential candidate, but we should not be under any illusions that he would probably have lost too.


#20

You talk about old races? For what purpose? Bernie has been the exception for decades. An Independent who kept on winning races. Lol. I think you should have mentioned that in your list of Independent races!


#21

"Democrats lost because turnout was low. And turnout was low because progressives were turned off by their choices..."

Two points.

First, regarding "low" progressive turnout: progressives turned out for Clinton in the same very high numbers as for Obama. (And note, further, that there was no party member or electoral 'bump' for Greens after Sanders was out.)

However, that turnout was what Moore - one of a minority of analysts to predict a Trump win - called a "depressed Sanders vote" - a vote that did not campaign, volunteer, or bang on doors to bring every other progressive to the polls. It's not that it was "low" in numbers - but low in energy. By running a right liberal candidate and excluding, belittling and ridiculing the large progressive minority that votes Democrat, the 'big tent' party cut itself off from vital sources of support that went beyond simply voting.

Second, however, note that it was not simply a "depressed" progressive turnout; the minority vote was "depressed" too - and, in fact, numerically lower than for Obama.

Triumphally and proprietarily claiming the black vote, the dominant right liberal wing of the party failed to gauge just how soft that black support would be for a right liberal candidate that might inspire fear of the right...but inspired little positive faith or enthusiasm either...leading to some minorities simply staying home...