Sunday, May 7, 2017

Busting A Bernie-Or-Bust Buster, Buster

Cruising through Medium, I came across an item called "Bernie Or Bust People: Wake Up, You Were Conned." As so often happens, my reply to it ran a little long, so I decided to log it here:

It's still a minor marvel to me that so many Clintonites, who so often associate themselves with the reality-based community, feel no compunction against indulging in the same sort of ludicrous political fantasies as the absolute worst rightists. Some are, in this regard, so far gone there doesn’t even feel like much of a point in even trying to set the record straight.

Oh, well. Once more unto the breach...

No, Sanders supporters weren't "duped" nor "conned." They're not crazed cultists mindlessly following some messiah figure. They're not useful idiots who believed and acted on nonsense allegedly spawned by some foreign dictator. They represent a genuine political disagreement with the corrupt, rightist way of doing business of the Clintonites who dominate the party apparatus. And no matter how many of these fantasies you weave while entirely refusing to address it, you no more have the power to change that carved-in-stone, nowhere-to-run-or-hide fact than you have the power to make gravity reverse itself.

It should always go without saying (but usually ends up having to be said anyway) that any political movement--any political movement--attracts a certain percentage of kooks. The progressive left, which coalesced behind Sanders, is no different. I'd always cringe when I'd see some internet Berniecrat repeating the fiction that Hillary Clinton had smeared women who had been involved with her husband (in the more lurid versions, Bill is said to have sexually assaulted the women in question). They've always just been a small fringe though, certainly much smaller in number than the nutbar contingent that attached itself to Clinton (and is so generously represented here on Medium). We don't have any polling on the subject but we can say with confidence that the number of Sanders supporters who believed Clinton had ordered hundreds of people killed would be microscopic. Not even worth mentioning, unless the point is merely to come up with some way to try to smear Sanders’ supporters by an unsupportable inference.

Into that same category falls the efforts to blame such tales on Russian interference. There's no need to go looking to foreign lands; the American right has spun them for decades. Fairy tales are not why any significant number of people were supporting Sanders and opposing Clinton.

Fairy tales do, however, play a not-insignificant part in your own "analysis." You see fit here, for example, to repeat your claim from a previous article that "Bernie Sanders was never vetted by the media," which will, of course, be instantly received as a very poor-man's Brothers Grimm by anyone who paid any more than minimal attention to last year's campaign. Your examples of this alleged failure to vet are some vile ad hominems drawn from a bunch of anti-Sanders oppo-research the Clintonites dumped in the press during the campaign. Adam Johnson of Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting covered how press Clintonites used this material to produce a seemingly endless array of anti-Sanders hit-pieces throughout the primary season. No matter how often they published it, though, Sanders' popularity continued to rise. The "information" has been a matter of public record since early 2016 and Sanders is, today, the most popular politician in the U.S..[1]

You cite a graphic which you assert tried to "separate truth from what was now a BernieOrBust created fiction" and source it to Politifact but you provide no link and reproduce the image so small, it's difficult to read most of it. Politifact isn't generally in the business of generating such graphics. It does, however, consider the claims made in graphics produced by others. Searches via Google, Bing and Politifact's own search engine turn up multiple examples of the org fact-checking various graphics from the Democratic primary season (or what passes for fact-checking from Politifact) but no stories in which that particular graphic appears. General internet searches for the graphic itself based on its legible wording also turn up nothing.

Of the Clintonite oppo-research and "Politifact" chart, you assert, "This, along with many other variables may be just one of other reasons why Bernie Sanders seemed to only attract a mostly white younger crowd of followers," but nothing you'd written makes any case for any of that material being particularly appealing to young white people, unless, of course, one assumes that young white folks are, as you'd just described Sanders supporters, particularly prone to being ignorant dumbasses blindly following a messiah-like cult-leader. I suppose it wouldn't be a Clintonite tract unless it had the standard race-baiting in there but if you can't bottle the ends, wouldn't it be better to simply leave that on the cutting-room floor for once? It isn't as if that particular breed of weaponized faux-"identity politics" isn't already generously represented in practically every Clintonite attack on Sanders these days. I doubt they'd have revoked your credentials in the club for failing to work it in somewhere.

You approvingly quote Clintonite smear-artist Steve Stoft:

"Sander's Vermont strategy was always to run as a spoiler, knowing that even if he couldn't win, he might throw the race to the Republicans."

That is, of course, a strictly tendentious characterization of Sanders' political activities over the years, with essentially nothing to support it. It's very clear that Sanders does have problems with both the major parties and has, throughout his political career, attempted to stand as a choice for views not represented by them and thus locked out of the system. More to the point, Sanders made it very clear throughout the course of his presidential campaign--starting, in fact, long before it even launched--that he wouldn’t act as a spoiler in that race.

"[T]hough he’s an independent, he has implied he wouldn’t run as a third-party candidate so as not to play spoiler."
--The Atlantic, 13 Nov., 2014

"I won’t play the spoiler."
--Sanders, New York magazine, 28 Dec., 2014

"Sanders rejected the idea of running for president as an independent. 'No matter what I do, I will not be a spoiler,' Sanders said. 'I will not play that role in helping to elect some right-wing Republican as President of the United States.'"
--In These Times, 26 Jan., 2015

"[Sanders] emphasized that he would never run as a spoiler if it could lead to the election of a Republican president."
--Vox, 30 April, 2015

And on into infinity. And, indeed, once the primaries had played out, Sanders endorsed Clinton and spent the rest of the campaign working to elect her.

Contrary to the characterization of Sanders supporters as a cult, they didn’t go along with this. Throughout the 2016 race, Sanders had hosted the largest political rallies of any candidate of either party but when he started appearing on Clinton’s behalf, this dried up to the same nearly-nothing that had always greeted Clinton’s rallies. A lot of people loved him but they weren't cultist robots and weren't interested in simply doing what he told them. The movement wasn't about him. In the end, over 80% of them ended up voting for Clinton but they'd been telling pollsters they'd do that all along, and followed through on this even as Clinton went out of her way at every opportunity to aggressively alienate liberals/progressives while devoting her energies to courting Republican voters. You make the bold claim that
"In the meantime, the statistical information is in and those that made the choice to vote third party, sit out or even write Sanders name in, were the cause of the loss to Trump."
…which is the same farcical misrepresentation of the campaign one always gets from Clintonites. It's a fact that in the critical Rust Belt states, significant numbers of formerly Democratic voters either voted third-party or, much more often, simply stayed home, another smaller contingent of them voted for Trump and Trump won those states. Contrary to your assertion, there's no relevant data on people writing in Sanders' name (total write-ins nationwide accounted for only 0.56% of the vote in 2016), nor is there any relevant data on how many of those taking any of these other options being Sanders supporters. It's reasonable to assume that some unquantifiable percentage of Jill Stein's voters were former Sanders backers but only in Michigan and Wisconsin did her total vote exceed Trump's margin of victory. Absent the assumption that Clinton was somehow entitled to the votes of people who didn't want to give it to her, this is a non-issue.

More importantly, the entire suggestion that this is "the cause of the loss to Trump" in the way you make it is a comical atomization of the campaign. We have no real numbers for how many people participated in the Democratic primary/caucus process. The count on which Clintonites depend when making their oft-repeated (and bogus) claims of a "popular vote" victory in that process credits 15.8 million total participants but this excludes 8 contests entirely and has no real numbers for several others. Even if we had some way to theoretically fill in those blanks, the resulting number, less than half of which would be Sanders "voters," would still be utterly dwarfed by the total number who participated in the general election: 136.67 million people. Enough to swallow the total number of Sanders voters whole several times over. Clinton drew 65.85 million votes. The only reason one can pretend as if micro-factors like Jill Stein even mattered in the general is that Clinton, running against the most unpopular major-party candidate in the history of polling, couldn’t manage any significant lead over him, at which point it's necessary to point out that Clinton was the second-most-unpopular major-party candidate. That's what happens when you nominate such an unappealing, weak, loser candidate that most people hate.[2]

Moreover, Sanders was an energizing candidate, meaning he brought into the process large numbers of people who otherwise wouldn’t have participated in it. The fact that more than 80% of his supporters went for Clinton means that even her losing vote-totals are padded with an unquantifiable number of people Sanders delivered whom she would not have ordinarily received.

Now tell me I lack critical thinking skills and am a cultist, rather than a thoughtful, rational observer like you.



[1] More generally, the corporate press was a virtual monolith in forthright opposition to Sanders. After initially trying to ignore him to death--the usual treatment afforded any liberal or left candidate--it switched to attack mode and anti-Sanders editorials, both those clearly labeled and those presented as "news" articles, became a daily offering. In 16 hours leading up to the ever-important Michigan primary, the Washington Post ran 16 anti-Sanders stories. After Sanders trashed Clinton in Wisconsin, Clinton launched a new campaign to present Sanders as unqualified to be president but when Sanders responded, the entire press corps went nuts (at the behest of the Clinton campaign) and presented it as if he had gone negative and said she was unqualified to be president. When they realized a positive story about Sanders' legislative record somehow made it onto the New York Times website, Times editors took it down, rewrote it in order to turn it into an anti-Sanders hit-piece then republished it, without ever indicating they'd made any changes at all. In a great indication of how far this went, the Post ran a hard-hitting piece of investigative journalism wherein Philip Bump asserted that Sanders was lying when he was forever saying the average donation to his campaign is $27. Bump crunched the numbers and discovered that the actual average contribution was--wait for it--$29.14. In June, as the campaign was winding down and Sanders took some questions in California, a New York Times reporter actually asked if Sanders was "sexist" for running against Clinton, thus perhaps getting in the way of her becoming the first woman elected president. If the primary season had run another month, they would have been accusing him of being a sexist for merely existing. That Johnson piece at FAIR charts the course of this with many more examples. The claim that Sanders was never vetted is a standard one in Clintonite literature and it's just as false as the just-as-standard claim that Clinton's popular-vote victory over Trump was the largest in U.S. history.

[2] Priorities USA, the Clintonite super PAC, has conducted a bit of an autopsy of the 2016 loss, studying both former Obama voters who cast their ballot for Trump and the much larger group of drop-off voters who previously voted for Obama but declined to vote in the 2016 general. The org tries to fudge parts of the results, perhaps to soften the blow, but it shines through the numbers loud and clear. The drop-off voters have very negative general feelings about the Republican party and very positive general feelings about the Democratic party. They overwhelming believe the policies of Trump and of congressional Republicans will favor the wealthy over everyone else. Their values are forthrightly progressive on issue after issue. Overwhelming majorities of both the drop-offs and the Obama-Trump voters say their income is either falling behind the cost of living or just keeping pace with it. Asked about their priorities for the president and congress, here's a chart showing how Obama-Trump voters replied:

There are a handful of noxious Trumpite items among them, to be sure, but nearly all of these are progressive priorities (the circles were added by Priorities USA, not me; the "strongly support" and "mixed feelings" columns refer to respondents' view of Trump). Priorities USA concludes from this that "Clinton and Democrats' economic message did not break through to drop-off or Obama-Trump voters," but the problem here definitely isn't one of messaging; it's of the messenger with which Democrats had been saddled. Priorities USA gets squishy when it comes to to make an accounting of why the drop-off voters said they didn't vote, declining to provide a detailed breakdown, but disgust with the choices offered plays prominently in their accounting of it.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Another Anti-Bernie Sanders Hit Piece Considered

Another Medium-inspired rant; this time, I came across another anti-Bernie Sanders hit-piece. My response (which ends up here because, though not really a proper article in itself, it ran a bit long)...

Oh, look, another anti-Bernie Sander hit-piece. Just what the world needed. And as with almost every other article of this genre, it's mostly built on misrepresentations, fictions and horrendous and ill-informed value judgments. Let's see...
"While claiming politics was very important to him at an early age, he has also admitted to not voting until nearly 40 years old."
And then you quote Sanders very noticeably NOT admitting to having not voted until nearly 40. "I think probably, I won't swear to it, that the first time I voted was in the state of Vermont, probably for myself." Sanders’ first political campaign was for governor of Vermont; he launched it in 1971 when he was 30. In a five-year period, he ran four campaigns, twice for governor, twice for the senate, and even at the end of all that, still five years away from 40.

You offer a lot of tendentious talk about participation in electoral politics. "Even protesting has its limits in creating social change if the protesters are unwilling to back up their beliefs at the polls." Radicals typically aren't given a hell of a lot of options at the polls, which a big part of why so many left activists are indifferent to electoral politics--there's rarely anyone for whom to vote, the system is complete bullshit and they don’t feel like putting a stamp of approval on something they abhor. Sanders seems to have ultimately concluded that if the system isn’t producing what you want, do it yourself. He’s been doing the same for 46 years now.
"Only a wide-eyed idealist could say these things and not think they conflict with one another. If you believe elections are important because one gave rise to Hitler and therefore the Holocaust, why don’t you believe in them enough to vote in your own state’s or country’s until you're the one on the ballot?"
Oh, I don't know, maybe it has something to do with the fact that in those years in which he didn’t vote, Hitler was never on the ballot? Ya’ think?
"Perhaps that’s why in approximately 25 years in the House and Senate, Sanders doesn’t have a ton he can point to as an example of change he has championed and seen accomplished."
Sanders has always caucused with the Democrats but he’s an independent; he doesn’t have a party organization with 40 allies instantly behind him on a word. Despite these limitations, his legislative record is actually pretty impressive.

But to know that, you’d actually have to look into it instead of simply assessing his entire career via a pair of quotes from people who were supporting his political opponent at the time they offered the remarks in question (Barney Frank was particularly virulent in his hatred of the entire Sanders campaign).
“However, he conveniently leaves out votes against the Brady Bill, which mandated a waiting period when purchasing a firearm, and in favor of the now-infamous Clinton Crime Bill of 1994, among others.
“He was all too happy, however, to attack Hillary Clinton on such past issues while ignoring his own. This is the impulse of Bernie Sanders: everyone must past the purity test.
“Except Bernie Sanders, of course.”
Sanders never attacked Clinton on the Brady Bill (she attacked him on that one) or the 1994 crime bill. Sanders’ vote for the latter is probably the blackest mark on his legislative record. He voted for it because he strongly supported the Violence Against Women Act, which was attached to it, but that was a compromise he never should have made. He'd spent years denouncing the provisions of that crime bill and pretty much every bad thing he said about it ultimately came to pass. He was right on it but he cast the wrong vote. Hillary Clinton, by contrast, wasn't just an enthusiastic backer of the crime bill, she spent years parroting the same awful right-wing "tough on crime" demagoguery that had generated it. She was singing the same tune right through the 2008 election, attacking Obama as soft on crime. Sanders never criticized her support for it. He did correctly note that the "superpredator" comment Clinton deployed at the time was a term loaded with racist connotations.

Your version of the "purity test" attack on Sanders is that he 1) has a purity test and 2) exempts himself from it, which is, of course, a self-annihilating contradiction. One can be true or neither can be true but both can't be true. After invoking the dread "Purity Test" words against Sanders, you immediately deploy one against him, offering a long section devoted to questioning Sanders' credentials as a Democrat. You lead with a false claim:
"After years of presenting himself as a maverick totally independent of the two parties--to the point of even refusing to caucus with Democrats while he was in the House because they couldn’t pass his purity test”
Upon his election to the House, Sanders, in fact, lobbied for inclusion in the Democratic Caucus. This was repeatedly refused over the years--he didn’t meet their purity test. He’s always caucused with the Democrats though, and been treated as de facto family, getting committee assignments and support from the party in his reelection efforts. He and four other Demos founded the Progressive Caucus as sort of an off-shoot/collaborator with the Black Caucus. He's endorsed all of the Democratic presidential candidates. Later, you trash Sanders for some changing statements on whether he'll continue to call himself a Democrat or an independent, something, like the rest of this topic, is, for non-purists, of absolutely no consequence (40% of Democratic voters presently call themselves "independents," just under 60% call themselves "Democrats"), and if it ever occurs to you that perhaps Sanders had second thoughts about this as the primaries went along in response to the very shabby treatment afforded him by the DNC--the suggestions by Sanders' supporters of a rigged primary were, in fact, true--you remain silent on the matter.
“The debates with Clinton, civil at first, got nasty and more personal the longer the primary went. The more states Sanders won, the more savage he became.
“Sanders attacked Clinton for her past voting record, though it largely holds up to his own. He even at one point called the former First Lady, Senator, and Secretary of State unqualified for the presidency. Then he began to claim the DNC had rigged the election against him.”
That’s a creative reimagining of the 2016 primary season. In the real world, of course, Sanders ran an issue campaign, describing Clinton from the outset as a friendly acquaintance and refusing to personally attack her, though she never hesitated to slanderously attack him at every opportunity. He held to this throughout the campaign, to his own significant disadvantage (and to the consternation of some of his supporters). After Sanders flattened Clinton in Wisconsin, Clinton launched a new campaign, the assertion that Sanders was unqualified to be president. When Sanders responded, he used this attack "as a rhetorical device to criticize her policy record." Robin Andersen, writing for Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting, provides a timeline of these events and describes the pathetic spectacle that followed, as Clinton campaign operatives exploded with mock self-righteous outage and got the entire national press corps to claim that Sanders had finally gone negative and had called her unqualified.

Having learned that you've been so grossly misled by the Clintonites--basically turned into a useful idiot a year after you could be of any real use to Clinton herself--I'm sure you're just as offended by Clinton's tactics as everyone else of good conscience. Right?
"We all know how the story of the primary ended: Clinton wound up building an insurmountable lead that included a raw vote advantage of approximately 4 million and more delegates than Sanders could have hoped to gain with the few states remaining."
There is no meaningful popular vote count in a primary/caucus process. What's presented as the "popular vote" and that you're referencing (repeating a false Clintonite claim, actually) was 3.7 million but that was the total after all contests had finished, not, as you presented it, as they were ongoing, and that number excludes and/or severely shortchanges numerous massive Sanders wins (I just covered all of this in a pretty long article of my own). Clinton only ever had an "insurmountable lead" because of the superdelegates, which, being a good Democrat, I'm sure you'll agree are an anti-democratic abomination that shouldn't have existed anyway. And you're bashing Sanders for declining to drop out while there were still states in play and beyond the point it was statistically likely he could win, exactly the same thing Clinton did in 2008. Maybe you thought poorly of Clinton for this then too--if  you're going to employ false Clintonite claims to attack Sanders, maybe you should say so.

"Since Trump’s inauguration in January, Sanders has consistently attacked Democrats and undercut them from the inside. Even knowing the Democrats face an uphill battle in fighting anything Trump and a GOP-controlled congress wants to do, Sanders can’t seem to quit stroking his own ego."
The usual Clintonite slander; it's all about Sanders' "ego" and not any sort of legitimate disagreement. In reality, Sanders is probably the least egotistical politician in government. Here's what Sanders has actually been doing since the new congress came into session. He and Sen. Amy Klobuchar put together an amendment that would have resulted in the Senate taking up the question of legally allowing importation of much cheaper prescription drugs from abroad. Sanders managed to convince 13 Republicans to support the amendment, and if you've paid any more than minimal attention to how things work in congress, you'll already understand how utterly extraordinary that is. But then Sen. Cory Booker ("D"-NJ) led a dozen other Democrats to vote against the measure, sending it down in flames. Booker and his dirty dozen are financed by Big Pharma. Seems a pretty good example of the sort of bribery-and-donor-service system Sanders has condemned for decades, eh? More to the point, these Democrats, not Sanders, were the ones undercutting most of their colleagues. Sanders has teamed with Sherrod Brown and Al Franken to introduce legislation to, among other things, allow drug importation, prevent Big Pharma from monopolizing the results of publicly-financed research, cut the government-granted monopoly period and allow generics to come to market sooner and allow Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices--basically everything Big Pharma opposes. He's introduced his newest free college tuition plan. He's introduced a bill raising the minimum wage to $15/hour. He's teamed with Jeff Merkley and Edward Markey to introduce legislation to "to build a 100 percent renewable energy economy by 2050." And he's working on introducing a new iteration on Medicare-for-all healthcare. While Clintonites sit on their asses writing poisonous articles like your own (calling Sanders things like a "saboteur from the inside"), he's been working his ass off on behalf of progressive legislation.

You assert that the DNC "has done everything they can think of to appease [Sanders] and his supporters" and use as your example new DNC chief Tom Perez magnanimously supporting the creation of a new position at the DNC for Keith Ellison, Sanders' choice to lead that org, after defeating Ellison for the top slot. In reality, the party bigwigs, upon realizing that a Sanders-backed liberal was about to become head of the DNC, recruited Tom Perez late in the game for no other reason than to take out Ellison. They dumped a bunch of anti-Ellison oppo research in the press to sabotage Ellison's campaign. Perez had no real platform; the Democrats made him the chairman at the same meeting at which, over the Sandersites' fierce objections, they declined to reinstate Barack Obama's ban on the DNC taking money from lobbyists and PACs. More dirty money in which to wallow. Presenting this as an example of the DNC trying to appease Sanders and his supporters requires ignoring pretty much everything that happened.

You turn to the special election in Kansas, where Berniecrat James Thompson, running in an overwhelmingly red district, still managed to come within a few points of his Republican opponent:
"Sanders did not support Thompson in person, vocally, or in writing. He ignored the campaign almost completely, yet saw fit to lecture Democrats on doing the exact same thing he did."
From the very Politico article to which you linked (but apparently didn't read): "Democrat James Thompson, a veteran and civil rights attorney who Sanders endorsed..." The Wichita Eagle: "Sanders, who came to national prominence last year with a surprisingly strong grassroots campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, had endorsed Thompson." The Associated Press: "Sanders did endorse and campaign for 46-year-old Democrat James Thompson, a civil rights lawyer, ahead of his closer-than-expected, losing effort in a special U.S. House election in Kansas last week."Sanders came to Topeka at the end of February, the only national figure to do so. The Berniecrat Our Revolution endorsed Thompson and provided modest support, only $900 (or that's all that's been reported so far). The comparable figure from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, whose dedicated job is to support Democratic candidates, is $0.
"Speaking of which, Sanders also remained conspicuously silent regarding Jon Ossoff and his campaign to take Georgia’s 6th District, vacated by current HHS Secretary Tom Price."
Ossoff had the support of the entire Democratic Establishment, which wasted enough money on him to have won a Senate seat, for no other purpose than to be able to go on television if he won and say "the Trump agenda is being rejected!" It was a bullshit show-election. Your conclusion that Sanders' failure to comment on that race illustrates "his unwillingness to simply help the Democrats in resisting the Trump agenda" is ludicrous.
"Sanders decided it would be a great idea to come out and attack the entire foundation of the party... Again, the sentiment isn't necessarily wrong. However, in a time when Democrats are doing all they can to resist a budding facist, it appears as though the effort to resist Trump really only counts if it's his idea."
Sanders said the Democrats' model is failing. The fact that Republicans now control 32 state legislatures, 33 governorships, the presidency, both houses of congress and the Supreme Court speaks for itself. Just as "clearly," argued Sanders, "the Democratic Party has got to change." There isn't even any conceivable argument against that, so you just try to present his case in favor of strengthening the party as one that undermines it, his argument that it must be a grassroots party as "an attack on the entire foundation of the party." The grassroots are the foundation of the party. You're clearly sympathetic to Sanders' views but you're tying yourself in knots for no other reason than to try to come up with some excuse to attack him, while, again, he's the guy pushing for every issue every progressive holds dear.
"Even if that idea means supporting a candidate who opposes abortion, despite the Democratic party’s official stance to the contrary.

"Again, that’s the purity politics of Bernie Sanders."
That's the "purity test" analysis of his nuttier critics--he stands perpetually condemned for both allegedly having a purity test then, in that case, for allegedly not having a stringent enough one. You can't have it both ways; that's just not possible. Heath Mello, the candidate in question, has an anti-abortion past but appears to be otherwise progressive. He's sworn he won't legally interfere with abortion rights. Take that for what it's worth but he's running for mayor, which means he won't be in any position to affect them anyway. His Republican opponent, on the other hand, is a conservative and strictly anti-abortion. One of them will be mayor.

Of what Sanders is preaching, you conclude, "The message itself is great, but the delivery is horrendous. Attacking the only party attempting to fight for the middle class, the environment, health care, and many of Sanders' other pet projects defies reason." To note what should be obvious, no party can do that if it's out of power and at present, the Democratic party is, in that regard, at one of the lowest points in its history--prostrate, decimated and entirely incapable of offering any resistance to Trump. Unless Trump suddenly decides to start talking to Democrats, Republicans will, for at least the next two years, decide the fate of the American government without any Democratic input at all. Sanders, the most popular pol in the U.S., is making the case for rebuilding the party. He's already shown the way with his small-donor-financed presidential campaign. As I've already covered, he's been working with other Democrats in the Senate to advance a progressive agenda, one on which that born-again party could be built. Those in the bribery-and-donor-service "neoliberal" Clintonite wing of it, who have brought it to such ruin, made sure to keep themselves in their cushy jobs in its leadership. The things that set them apart from actual liberals/progressives are incredibly destructive policies that have no popular support within the party. They're going to have to go. And in a sense, they already are. The young are with Sanders. They're the future.

It isn't as simple as that, of course. The Clintonites have massive backing from Big Money interests--they can put up a hell of a fight and will. Someone's going to win though. "This fight is simple," you incorrectly write, "Democrats are attempting to do the right thing for the country." Some are. They're Sanders' supporters and the people working with them--the progressives. They're not undermining the party; they're rebuilding it. If, on the other hand, you're a Democrat and you're sitting around writing utterly pointless slanders aimed at undermining them, you're part of the problem and certainly have no claim on any concern for doing "the right thing for the country."

--j. (who doesn't even believe liberal democracy is "the right thing for the country" but can see this)