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The Sanders Institute's Gathering Was About Saving the World, But It Was Not About Bernie Sanders

The Sanders Institute's Gathering Was About Saving the World, But It Was Not About Bernie Sanders

Julia Conley, Jake Johnson, and Jon Queally

It was a small and relatively intimate event—this small conference described as a "gathering of minds to envision the world we want"—that took place over three days as last month ended and December began in Burlington, Vermont.

I mostly stand with the organizers, panelists, and participants in this important event. I absolutely agree that time is running out – in terms of global warming, it’s already too late.

But the comprehensive transformation necessary is impossible within the current 2-party political framework. The progressives at Sanders’ event have to fight not only the r-party, but the dominant faction in the d-party who are happy to take incremental business-friendly steps instead of radically changing course. Thus, if Sanders et al are serious about confronting desperate challenges as the clock ticks, they’d better come up with solutions that work around the duopoly. That calcified farce exists to stop the kind of transformation this event proscribes in its tracks.


simple solution to the world’s ills, but tackling ours right here in Amerika first, is meeting the needs of the least of us, then the prosperity will rise to the rest of us. yes I am talking about black peoples 'needs, since it was their backs that built this nation and they received about - you got it - zilch from it all. Heard about this simple solution from my black son-in-law who heard it expressed by a black commentator on a CNN panel this past week. The white moderator sat their speechless even after the panelist repeated it once again. Invisible as usual to white folks. ugh.


It’s not that easy when there are tremendous roadblocks installed by the dems and the repubs to stop any third party in their tracks. I am starting to find a little hope in the tide of young people who are fighting for their lives. Enough of them will break the roadblocks to democracy. The millineals don’t seem to give a shit so the younger ones are taking over. It’s about time.


From The Real News:



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HI kikik15: yes to everything you said, but don’t forget the Native Americans and ALL the immigrants who helped to build this country. : )

HI AntiFascist451:
Well there is a qualifier there: " the immigrants who helped to BUILD this country," You see plenty did not build, as they only took! : )

All political meetings should be about policy and not about policy. You start with policy and end with policy. Somewhere in the middle of the meeting, you can cover how the selected politician has supported those policies in the past and how they will support them in the future.
The bulk should always be about policy and provide details of actions to be carried out.

The conference seems all over the place, but one takeaway from this summary is the needed focus on combatting the vast weapons industry that sucks up the money and sucks us all into conflict.
That said, I think there is an inadequate understanding of the obstacles posed not just by capitalist structures but by people’s wants. Sure, folks can be made to see that some version of medicare for all is a good thing, so are higher minimum wages, more transparent campaign finance, but: most of us also want to drive and fly everywhere they want regardless of the climate and environment and, as can be seen in France, will riot to keep this right; most of us want to eat plenty of meat and there are hundreds of millions hoping to be able to afford to do the same; most people want to have as many kids as they want (and government support for that with pre-natal care, child care, education etc) no matter the skyrocketing population spreading into the last natural areas, gobbling up resources and wildlife habitat; most people are more loyal to their family, tribe, county in that order before the concept of humanity as a whole. At this point, it is hard to see how all this can be overcome unless these problems are recognized.

On the US contribution to climate change: What legislation couldn’t be passed during the Obama years, won’t be passed during the Trump years. That said, I think the most likely scenario is that we’ll go out by nuclear war. Over the last two years, Republicans have worked to build support for war against China while Democrats have worked to build support for war against Russia. This warmongering finally brought China and Russia together, working out their years of conflict in view of this potential world threat – the US. Until then, I recommend that all those who have privately owned motor vehicles stop driving them unless they absolutely have no choice.

Our own history shows why it’s not possible to rebuild the economy/country without legitimately addressing our poverty crisis, and that’s not going to happen. Many understood that the Obama years represented our last chance to do that, but there was no broader public interest.

“I travel and meet leaders all over the world and they cannot understand how the United States digs deeper and deeper into this hole.”

That’s from Jeffrey Sachs, economist at The Gathering. Sachs, of course, means those in power in USA, digging the whole country - and the rest of the world - into the abyss.

Is there anybody here who doesn’t understand why the 1% continues? Most of the US Congress is in the 1%, btw. Sachs would know that. Did he tell those leaders? The second answer is simply fear of losing all the money and the grip on power.