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The Most Substantive Political Debate in Recent Political History


The Most Substantive Political Debate in Recent Political History

David Morris

Win or lose, Bernie Sanders has made this Democratic primary the most substantive in my lifetime. Not that Hillary Clinton’s campaign is devoid of ideas. She has some thoughtful ones. But the boldness of Sanders’ proposals is what has driven this historic and instructive debate.

The dynamic so far consists of Sanders setting a marker (e.g. free tuition, universal free health care, breaking up the banks, a $15 federal minimum wage, a $1 trillion public works investment); Clinton responds, and their two camps engage in a spirited, intelligent, and surprisingly concrete debate.


Oh, yes. Substantive.

The other night Charlie Rose interviewed Sanders. Rose asked, "Is going too far to say she bears responsibility for Iraqi war deaths?'”

Sanders answered, “Of course she doesn’t bear responsibility. She voted for the war in Iraq. That was a very bad vote, in my view. Do I hold her accountable? No."

If anyone needs more proof that Sanders' entire candidacy is pure Political Theater, I just don't know how to help you.


Rose asked the 'have you stopped beating your wife' question. You are a clinton shill. Go on deny it.


We have insurance, but we avoid going to the doctor because of copays. One appt can cost $100 and then even more if there are tests or medications. We have ended up putting bills on our credit card and have increased our credit debt because of medical bills. We already filed for bankruptcy because of medical bills after I had a chiropractic injury. I had migraine medicine that cost $80 per pill and that was WITH insurance.

Bernie Sanders gets our votes.


You might want to ask yourself WHY a mainstream media 'host' poses a question about historical policy and consequences and frames it for a yes or no answer. Golly, tsktsk, just not enough time for something like that.


Morris' "Grand Canyon" analogy falls apart when you compare Clinton's track record with her 2016 campaign rhetoric that will be forgotten in November 2016 if she wins the presidency and starts announcing appointees. At that point Clinton will be on the same side of the canyon as the GOP, with Sanders disappeared into the woods on the other side of the canyon.


It is an interesting article. I wonder why there is no mention of the candidates' foreign policy differences. Hillary is a NeoCon Light. Bernie is much more circumspect and wise.


This 'comparison' article is a bit late in the race to my mind. It needed to be written before the primaries not in the latter stretches. Nevertheless, you get the feeling that many people of good will are beginning to contemplate what life will be like if the rigged game succeeds in forcing us to end up with Hillary being the nominee. Nobody but nobody expects her to keep her promises, so what we will end up getting is more Obama style republican light and excuses for letting the republicans block social programs. The Hillary who takes huge amounts from Wall St and yet says she wants everyone to have some skin in the game... What an image as in they got skinned alive?

$12 an hour Hillary wants skin in the game? I think people are realizing that this shows us best who she really is. A multimillionaire telling poor people that they should get paid less while states are already agreeing to pay $15 an hour. That is our $12 Hillary. Friend to oligarchy and conning the poor. Does anybody think the rich will choose to send their kids to for free college educations instead of the Ivy League schools? Seriously? That comment shows just how dishonest Hillary is. She is playing to the republicans ( admittedly female ones I suppose) and simply deceiving people. She is making promises because Bernie is winning voters but she has absolutely no intention of keeping them. It is so obvious it is almost painful to watch.

And will someone please tell me just why Hillary has been given the reputation of being so competent and able to accomplish so much? Based on what record? Where is Hillary's record of these accomplishments? Where?


The Reagan gutting of administrative capacity of the federal government followed by oiling the revolving door for PRIVATIZATION - to render demnocratic governance a profit source has been running in overdrive and the consequences are piling up with deadly results. The bizarre side effect of this seems to be an unspoken assertion that human beings are incapable of governance for the common good. At best a projection of the economic premise of constant growth, now clearly proving to accelerate environmental destruction (ahhh... the "green revolution"), mass extinctions, not to mention conceptual impoverishment of the economic model itself. It has been demonstrably doubling down on secrecy, mendacity, violence, militarization. It is sliding down an authoritarian skid slicing democracy in an attempted death by a thousand cuts. The blades used are exemplified, albeit certainly not being the first, by Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State in the coup against democratically elected president Zelaya of Honduras.

Ironically, the model based on absolute colonization, which must first assert a God-given mandate to dominate, having reached the wall of its insatiable demand for constant growth by negation in every sphere its parasitic demands espy, has no functional knowledge of HOW real life balances for healthy equilibrium. It has alienated this sphere of function for so long that cannot even recognize it when it looks right at it.

One characteristic of invasive plant species is the secretion of substances that prevent endemic plant species from growing. Tragic that this seems to be the framing of the failing system clawing as much as it can terrified of changing - terror seeming to be its among its most powerful secretions.


While the debate has been substantive it has largely been academic since the Republicans have a firm hold on the House of Representatives. So largely the debate has been about what can we do if we imagine the Democrats controlled the Senate and House. The debates between Obama and Clinton were more relevant because things were much more favorable for the Democrats in Congress in 2008 but by the time of the election in November the economic system was collapsing and the focus became how to save to save it. The task for the Democrats is to do better on the state level so the Republicans can't gerrymander themselves into 10 more years of controlling the House in 2020. Until then all we can do is get by and continue to play mind games about what we would do if the Republicans didn't control either or both the Senate and the House .


"Hillary has the support of most economists. Twenty-two selected by NPR’s Planet Money “from across the political spectrum” turned thumbs down on Bernie’s proposal. 2007 Nobel Laureate Eric Maskin spoke for most of his profession, “ Many students can afford to pay a considerable amount toward their higher education. It is wasteful to give them a free ride.”

NPR shilling for Clinton and distortion of her record catering to big-money, as well as distortion of Bernie Sanders record and proposals for the common good, and how he proposes to pay for them, is typical for NPR and WNYC!



And to carry your thought further - we continue to forget that we always forget in mainstream politics.
The forgetting of our endless forgetting is the basis of mainstream insanity.


Love this - "has no functional knowledge of HOW real life balances for healthy equilibrium. It has alienated this sphere of function for so long that cannot even recognize it when it looks right at it."

Yup, centrism cannot see its own insanity. The language of centrism precludes understanding its extremism. After all, it's "centrist". The center is in "the middle" (not), is the result of compromise (not), and is the essence of democracy (antidemocracy). Its metalanguage is air-tight. The epistemology- meaningless and openly deceptive.


Great Post!


Ummm, except they aren't really "debating" those things. She is saying pretty things until she no longer has to. She is a privatizer, a regime changer, and loves the TPP.

Bernie is saying the same things he's been saying for his whole life.


Yes, this is the neoliberal firm mindset. They are so meritorious for having risen so far, and we are almost a sub-species, deserving of their pats on the head and the gutting of our life savings.

i wish that I could be easy going and say, oh yeah, she'd be great, too, and not dislike her so much, but i just cannot and be honest. I'd love to have more love for my hillary voting Dems, but right now i'm just a tad angry and should likely stay away from all this and just phone bank and canvas.


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or write in Bernie. :O)


Or we could do what the French just did over the weekend and take it to the streets. The great thing about humans is that we have free will, and in the US, we the people are the sovereigns of this nation--by law. In my book, that provides us with a lot of latitude to not only question but act against authority when warranted. The time now warrants it, and has done for a while.

There is always an alternative, it just may be uncomfortable for many, and downright painful for some.


Another word for center is middle, and there exist all kinds of middle euphemisms, which apply here:
Play both ends against the middle.
The mushy middle.
Middle of nowhere.
Caught in the middle.
Never change horses in the middle of the stream.
And my favorite, don't stand in the middle of the road, you'll get run over.