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Jonathan Alter Thinks Democrats Need to Be Less Democratic

Jonathan Alter Thinks Democrats Need to Be Less Democratic

Kevin Gosztola

There is a genre of commentary from liberal pundits that persistently appears like crab grass, and it involves scolding progressive or left-wing voters for their activism around elections. Jonathan Alter, a columnist for The Daily Beast and an MSNBC analyst, is the latest pundit to pen a nauseating lecture.

Ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, even though the “odds” favor flipping the House of Representatives, Alter expresses concern about Democrats who are already banking on a victory.


It’s people like Alter, who were totally in the tank for Hillary from the beginning who cost us the one nominee who could have beaten Donnie - Sanders. Their sabotage of Bernie and billions of dollars in free publicity for Donnie did more to give us the nightmare we are living through than anything else. I don’t know why anyone listens to these supposedly liberal pundits, they are like the neo-con commentators like Bill Kristol who lied to get us into the Iraq War, but keep “failing up”, never losing their positions for being very, very wrong.


Kevin has a nice dream and his assessment of failed democrats is accurate. The last democratic presidential candidate pushed austerity and war. That policy combo was so awful a slovenly slum lord won the election.

Political parties are part of the representative democracy scam that continues to govern while all the advanced economies plunder and destroy so much that humans could become extinct very soon.

What is coming? No person or organization has the answer. Evolution is accelerating and we either come up with something to replace capitalism growing to infinity or humans die out.


Jonathan Alter- cheerleader for the Inauthentic Opposition Party.


I whole-heartedly advise Alter and his ilk to push the “we’re all moderates now” agenda.

The stayed-home-didn’t-vote contingent will surely grow, and Alter will blame Jill Stein voters.

And pretty soon, the stayed-home contingent will realize that they should become Jill Stein voters because the D-Party offers them nothing.

One last thing: Since the Ds can only take back the House by getting a lot of Blue Dogs elected, just what kind of progressive legislation can we expect from the Bart Stupaks and Dan Lipinskis of the world? Hint: Hope you like RomneyCare and endless war.

Oops, I revealed that I’m anti-war. Now I’m guilty of ‘moral vanity.’


Atler is a fool masquerading as an idiot. There a reason voter turnout plummets in the USA and there more people NOT VOTING at all then there are voting either Republican or Democrat and that exactly because of the “strategic thinking” of guys like THIS buffoon.


I’ve just returned from a Kucinich appearance here an hour ago. Last month I had the opportunity to interview Rich Cordray. My conclusion was that Kucinich can sound “respectable” and Cordray can sound “radical.”

Alter’s perspective is erroneous on both.

Wish they could both serve.


Journalism 101? I’m having a hard time finding in the article where and in what media Alter wrote the lecture that is being reported on here. What is the source?

This kind of Democratic Party gaslighting occurs every election cycle. Jonathan Alter isn’t remarkable or extreme in making the arguments again. Some posters at CD have a permanent, full-time job arguing the same stuff.


“A remnant of lefties are still living in Jill Steinland—acting as if midterms are in the bag, and they can indulge in expensive primary fights over minor policy differences that drain resources from the constitutionally critical task at hand,” …

You mean:

Single payer
Endless war and complete whitewash of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians
Blank checks for the MIC
Tepid support of unions and the working class
Sabotaging any candidates who challenge the economic power structure all the DNC folks protect
Not holding anyone accountable for torture and war crimes
Support for the surveillance state

Alter’s another corrupted media figure who has pulled up the ladder behind him once he got paid enough. Dime-a-dozen sellout you can watch throughout any given day on MSDNC.


I think it is a waste of time for people like Alter to try to deter more progressive candidates from running in primaries. The Democratic Party is split, that is a fact. There is a progressive movement focused on economics that seems to have begun with Occupy and grew with the Sanders’s campaign.This movement is determined to run candidates in primaries and will not be dissuaded by any arguments. I think individual voters should consider which candidate they agree with the most on issues, which candidate seems most suited to be in Congress, and which candidate has the best chance of winning in the general election. Usually the decision will be pretty easy to make but in some cases it will be difficult. There is no question that liberal democracy is at stake. Trump is clearly an authoritarian figure and he has millions of voters who believe in authoritarian government. This includes white nationalists and a large segment of Evangelicals, and economic libertarians supported in large part by the Koch brothers. These groups know that if everyone has an opportunity to vote their agenda will be defeated. They are using voter suppression and keeping their agenda largely hidden in an effort to succeed. It is critical that whomever opposes Republican candidates wins in November. It is now very clear that Republicans cannot be counted on to stop the march toward fascism.


What could possibly be less democratic than Dirty Debbie and the Superdelegates?

It has been clear for several decades that NEITHER major party can be counted on to stop Amerika’s march toward fascism.  The DamnocRats - being less well organized than the RePoopLickens - aren’t able to march quite as fast, but their leaders are headed in the same basic direction – a Korpocracy – which is something my dad warned me about more than thirty-five years ago.  I’m glad you are finally catching on (sort of).

Of course a RePoopLicken Korpocracy would lean a bit more toward being a “christian” theocracy – at least on the surface – than a DamnocRatic Korpocracy, but in either case the real leaders behind the throne pulpit will be the owners of the Multi-NaZional Korporations.

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I’d like to know why the punditocracy warns the Democratic party not to run their campaigns “against Trump” while the Republican party, recognizing their big tax cuts for the wealthy have gone over like a lead balloon, are running now against Hilary!

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That couldn’t possibly be because the DamnocRats are still under the control of Hilliary and her elitist cronies, could it?   Maybe the RePoopLickens (other than Tweetle-Dumb) are smarter than we give them credit for . . .

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What’s my dream?

Definitely, the differences are anything but minor


My mistake. Here’s the link that didn’t make it into my piece: https://www.thedailybeast.com/democrats-are-primed-to-win-big-reclaim-the-house-and-save-our-democracy-heres-how-they-could-blow-it

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The voting analysis of the last electoral charade shows those who did not vote (eligible voters) far out “voted” both R’Con trumper racists and Shillary die-hards. The data shows a steady decrease in Dem Party voting; why? Because the DP is accurately viewed as corrupt and complicit, serving big-money, corporate-banker-wall st thieves and parasites, obscene pro pentagon war-machine spending, and NOT standing-up for the little guy and gal! They are not a proactive/progressive party since Bill Clinton (at least - maybe back to FDR) or a real opposition party now in the age off the orange mental case - ie there’s nothing of real substance or progressive for informed people who really give a shit to vote enthusiastically FOR coming from the DP! We were sold that pig-in-a-poke garbage by Obama - the “change we could believe-in” BS, only to be immediately betrayed!

Now, with the 2018 mid=terms coming up fast, the DP is still mired in the corrupt muck of their own creation, refusing to reform, following the same political rubbish people like the “analyst” Alter are selling, and the so-called Dem “strategists” pushing - a bunch of fuckin idiots that haven’t gotten it right for a very long time and still want the DP and America to “trust us”…

The DP is following in its own failed footsteps dominated by the same losers, self-interested sellouts to big-money, the war-machine, and treasonous pro-Israel at-any-cost (to us) creeps that hold first loyalty to a foreign power…all taken with all, this mid-term (s)election is looking like all the rest where the Dems having nothing really courageous to offer, snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in their stupidity and arrogance!

"2016 election facts "
"As a percentage of eligible voters, Clinton received 28.43% (65,845,063) of all votes compared to Trump’s 27.20% (62,980,160) and Did Not Vote’s 44.37% (102,731,399).
Total voter turnout was estimated to be 55.3% of the voting age population and 59.0% of the voting eligible population.

“Neither Candidate even won a majority of votes cast, Clinton got 48.0% vs Trump’s 45.9%”


In the Alter-universe…

Social Security needs “reformed” e.g., benefits cut (just a bit slower than Republican proposals)

The rest of the safety net…ditto.

HR 676, or Medicare for All isn’t politically feasible and that the ACA should be “strengthened”.

None of this talk about decreasing spending on the MIC.

None of that whole Moral Movement highlighting the plight of poor people (chicken holds up hand)

None of this talk about corporate subservience within the ranks the Democratic Party. Hell, no, none of that because it’s just Republicans you know.

And the rest of the fucking “moderate” Joe Lieberman No Labels type sorry tripe.

It just never clucking ends.

But I’ve been informed, I just don’t get it. Not sophisticated enough. Heck I might have opposed FDR’s New Deal according to my whacky leftist arguments.

Oh if only we had anything close to an FDR.

This is the same Corporate State Democratic rot that has infested the party since the DLC spawned Bill Clinton.

Go ahead CSD apologists, have the last word. I’m too exhausted to debate the clucking “nuance”.


As the Socialist of the late 1800s used to say: “The Democratic and Republican Parties are separate wings of the same bird of prey.”


You, Jonathan Alter, may think it is minor, unimportant ‘small differences’ because you don’t give a flying fig about the thousands of children being killed in Yemen by the American MIC or the thousands of Americans dying because they have no health care or the globe warming towards an ecological disaster. These are minor differences to you.

You say we have to protect democracy. You are a disgusting, hypocritical liar. What you are pushing is anti-democratic. Democracy means level playing field primaries where the base chooses who is their candidate. But in your mind that is not wise.

You obviously don’t believe in democracy or in your selected candidates because you don’t argue for voters to pick your candidates because they are better on the issues. No, instead you shame, lie, confuse, gas light, and work against the people choosing in the name of pragmatics.

Fuck you and the horse you rode in on. (The Clinton machine.)