DARK HORSE: Bernie Sanders 2016-Black Lives Matter, for some. (Updated)

It was an outdoor event for Bernie Sanders in Seattle. Just as Sanders began his speech before several thousand supporters activists for BlackLivesMatter overtook the stage. Sanders retreated, abandoning the stage to the activists. Amid boos and shouts the activists demanded a moment of silence for Michael Brown, killed by police in Ferguson Missouri a year to the day earlier. Calling Sanders supporters a bunch of white racists, the activists were a gift the Clinton campaign. But what if they were something else? What if they represented an attack by Clinton on Sanders? There is a history that supports that theory.

Bernie Sanders is a distraction for Hillary Clinton. On August 5th it became only too clear to her campaign that the distraction had in fact become a threat. He has real momentum, as a virtually every poll of likely voters found Sanders and Clinton in a statistical dead heat. More alarming for the Clinton camp is that those numbers show Sanders’ numbers continuing to rise as confidence in Mrs. Clinton continues to fall. The attitude of the Clinton camp is that she will be the democratic party’s nominee, and major forces are aligning behind Clinton to ensure that inevitability. The Clinton campaign’s number one task is to deliver a decisive blow to Sanders.

Sanders’ Achilles heel is his lack of recognition within the Black community. It represents a substantial weakness, as the Black vote is critical going into the primaries, but more so for the general. Hillary lags behind and even is perceived as insincere on economic issues. In the past she courted banks and financial interests, while Sanders has been consistent about those institutions and their legacy in bringing about the financial collapse of 2007-2008, which decimated millions of middle class and poor families. Sanders has helped to drive her to a more public position of holding Wall street accountable, even while she still courts those same interests.

The facture point is in the BlackLivesMatter movement. That movement has succeeded in highlighting the singular disparity in police shootings of Blacks versus any other racial or ethnic group in the country. A Black man is seven times more likely to be shot by police than a white person. Getting to a proper comprehension of that issue poses challenges to many in the white community who have no cultural reference to the Black experience in America. Martin O’Malley found that out abruptly at a campaign stop in Arizona when interrupted by a black lives matter activist when he proclaimed that “all lives matter.” Sanders was forced off the stage at the same event. The reaction by both candidates did little to increase their profile in the Black community.

The Arizona Netroots Nation event, moderated by Jose Antonio Vargas, an undocumented immigrant, was focused on immigration, in a state in which police have pursued an anti-immigrant agenda. She is trailing Sanders in the immigration debate, adamantly opposing illegal immigration but supporting TPP and remaining silent on corporate transgressors, both of which are directly responsible for driving undocumented immigration. 2293692353_e17a771b2f

Here is the interesting part: Bernie Sanders has been the target of two high profile disruptions, covered extensively on the corporate press and on social media, as if to make the case on how poorly in touch with the Black community Sanders appears. Unlike Arizona, sanders did not immediately leave the stage until it was obvious that the protesters were not going to allow him to speak, understanding that the imagery of BlackLivesMatter protesters being dragged off the stage would have been potentially devastating. But Sanders can point to a half Century of work for race issues and neglected communities, including an arrest in Chicago over fair housing practices.

Hillary made the same mis-speak in June, following the tragedy in Charleston when she said that “All Lives Matter,” while speaking at a Black Church. Despite that she has not faced the same disruptions that have dogged Sanders in particular. Whether or not that has been a deliberate tactic to drive Sanders out of the race is yet to be seen. There is, however, a history by Hillary Clinton in this sort of all out political warfare. In that fight her campaign has always gone for the jugular. While establishment democrats and progressives are keen to warn constituents and voters against the so-called circular firing squad in criticizing fellow dems, Hillary Clinton has shown an inclination in destroying adversaries and their supporters regardless of party affiliation. This is her last shot at a run for the white house. Those long knives are apparently out and quicker than ever.

Recall, it was Hillary Clinton’s campaign who began the “birther movement” to undermine the Obama campaign. The campaign also circulated the now infamous Obama “Turban” photo, meant to portray Obama as both a non-citizen and as a Muslim as a means of playing on base nationalism and bigotry. It was attorneys acting in support of Clinton who first raised erroneous doubts regarding Obama’s eleigibility(http://canadafreepress.com/article/22345). At the end of July the Clinton campaign began its outreach to Black Lives Matter leaders led by Clinton Black outreach director LaDavia Drane. On July 25th Drane attended the Movement for Black Lives convention in Cleveland, which saw some 1400 attendees. BuzzFeed confirmed from the Clinton campaign that Drane held “one on one meetings” with key figures (http://www.buzzfeed.com/darrensands/clinton-campaign-starts-black-lives-matter-outreach#.pxv5VPoJ7). Opel Tometi, founder of the group that disrupted the Netroots event expressed an interest in meeting with Drane. This from her Twitter following the event:
opal tometi ‏@opalayo Jul 27
opal tometi retweeted Tana Hargest
Nah, Clinton camp absolutely did not meet with #BlackLivesMatter. https://t.co/pam8V0Yh8U
opal tometi added,
Tana Hargest @TanaHargest
Clinton’s black engagement dir. LaDavia Drane attended #M4BL & didn’t meet w/@aliciagarza @osope or @opalayo Huh??? https://twitter.com/katherinemiller/status/625496183360892929 …

Tometi is a tireless activist, for both immigrant and African American rights. It seems likely that two events disrupting Bernie Sanders, just as his momentum is proving a substantial threat to Clinton’s designs on the white house are coincidental, a lack of organization or the open door policy of Sanders events in welcoming everyone. By contrast Hillary maintains strict order in every environment, even roping away reporters. Hillary events, it should be noted, are virtual fortresses, usually requiring mandatory donations to get within eyesight of the candidate. Still, Sanders’ immediate reaction was to hire a new press secretary, a Black woman and active supporter of the BlackLivesMatter movement, Symone Sanders. It at least communicates an effort to squarely address issues critical to progressives and the Left.

Tia Oso, who works alongside, Opel Tometi, and who took the stage and microphone in Arizona tweeted earlier this month that, “Hillary has been getting protests. There is likely a demonstration in front of her HQ every day.” That may describe the true problem. The Black community is the battleground between Sanders and Clinton. For Sanders, the reaction by his predominantly white base may become his biggest weakness. That base was clearly upset by the Seattle disruption, sparking a social media battle that may drive away Black voters and BLM activists. In Chicago, so-called progressive radio station WCPT’ drive-time host Norman Goldman was livid about the affront to Sanders.

For Hillary it may just be hollow words to a community exhausted and cynical about hollow words and focus group responses at a time when deaths of Blacks at the hands of police seem to be on the rise rather than…

As one activists put it on Twitter, echoing a theme and strategy of oppressed peoples everywhere. “When oppression is the #statusquo, disruption is a moral duty.”

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DARK HORSE: Bernie Sanders 2016- Death of a Soldier


The number of veterans who commit suicide daily in the US, according to the Veterans Administration is 22.

In November 2013 CNN reported that the figure might be low. The VA figure was based upon data from 21 states and did not take into account deaths from three of the five largest states, Illinois, California and Texas. Considering the VA figures take into account only 40% of the nation, the reality indicates a daily suicide number in excess of 50 veterans daily, or an annual figure of an astounding 18,ooo annually. By comparison there were 14.748 homicides of all types in the US in 2010, and yet the tragedy of suicides among the nation’s veterans has gone largely ignored.

In April 2007 Afghan veteran Levi Derby, haunted, according to his mother, by seeing an Afghan child blown apart by a landmine as he handed her a bottle of water hanged himself. According to CNN, Illinois does not send data on suicides, like Derby, to the VA. In September 2014, Iraq and Afghan Veterans Against the War, #IVAW activist, who had served three combat tours in Afghanistan Jacob David George committed suicide, the ultimate therapy for sufferers of the aftermath of combat, violence and trauma. George, who struggled with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, PTSD was critical of treatment by the VA, saying in an speech that the VA, “isn’t designed to address the depths of the wounds we have. They don’t really look at the soul and how the soul has been injured in war.”

The irony is that in a society which was relatively untouched by the war, and in which reporting on the war was filtered and sanitized, American veterans may be more susceptible to suicide than countries where warfare has occurred. A study titled, “Suicide in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the city of Sarajevo” found no significant increase in the number of suicides pre and post war (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24197489). Bosnia was involved in a bloody civil war, with its capital Sarajevo besieged, from April 1992 until April 1995. Bosnia’s overall official suicide is moderately low, according to worldlifeexpectancy.com. who takes its data from the World Health Organization, UNESCO and other databases (http://www.worldlifeexpectancy.com/cause-of-death/suicide/by-country/). While the numbers coming from Bosnia are suspect, the author’s experience in more than 20 years in the Balkans indicates a cultural ‘understanding” that indicates shared trauma on a community-wide scale. They all suffered through the war and now commiserate in its aftermath, even after more than 20 years. There is no such understanding on a national level in the US. As with Vietnam and Korea, veterans return to a nation with little or no understanding of the traumas and moral transgressions of war veterans must confront.

It was only in the last several years that tens of thousands of veterans, dishonorably discharged for PTSD related behavior could apply to upgrade their discharge in order to receive VA benefits. The Pentagon did not formally recognize PTSD until 1980. Indeed, the culture of the military still is far behind in understanding, let alone dealing with PTSD. In 2012 Blue Star Families, an advocacy group for military family members, in a report s aid that inadequacies in treatment were to blame for the high number of suicides among veterans. They also pointed to the military culture as well, and a system of soft retribution for soldiers admitting to PTSD.

Congress has been painfully slow in action regarding the PTSD crisis. While there has been legislation regarding mental health care and quality of life issues for veterans facing lifelong disabilities, it has continued to ignore the unique characteristics of PTSD (http://mic.com/articles/3400/despite-combat-ptsd-act-congress-is-falling-short-in-providing-for-veterans-with-ptsd). For veterans the primary issue is one of trust in the therapy and the therapist. PTSD is unlike other mental illnesses, in that there are multiple dimensions to the disorder from a myriad of causes and is highly individual in its nature. Compounding the disorder is the social nature of PTSD as family, friends and coworkers feed and become part of the disorder for a returning veteran. PTSD becomes community. True lasting an substantive therapy should combine individual psychological and physical therapy with family therapy as well. America must become part of its war making process and be a full agent in its aftermath. Currently it is not. Uncertainty, such as Joblessness and the economy factor greatly in the long term recovery of soldiers and civilians suffering PTSD. Insolated, isolated from warfare and its horrors, propagandized by a burgeoning and greed-centered defense industry and harboring jingoistic notions of war and violence, the nation has created a climate encouraging suicide rather than minimizing it.

Donald Trump did indeed call attention to veterans’ issues, though not in the way he believes. Trump, in assaulting and insulting the not just McCain, but all former American Prisoners of War, as well as veterans overall. What he did was to underscore the ultimate ignorance of the American government, the Pentagon, lawmakers and the American people regarding the plight of veterans, who are all but forgotten once they return home from war.

Trump is all but out of the race. Since his candidacy was far more about his ego than about the country, and based upon defiant comments to critics, and a refusal to back down at all over the McCain comments, Trump won’t leave quietly. Supporters flooded phone lines equally redoubling support for Trump as well as supporting his attacks on McCain’s service. Within that narrative is a glimpse into the direction the Tea Party and hardliners are taking the GOP. To observers it is no secret that support for veteran’s issues is a populist ploy to further corporate and power interests. To be accurate, the DNC has pandered here as well, both parties using the military as a gateway into the heartland while promoting policies that ultimately are anti-vet, anti-minority and anti-poor.

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DARK HORSE: Bernie Sanders and the race for 2016

Coming next week: The numbers and how they shake out. Can Sanders become the nominee? Could he win in the general?

Continued from the previous article:

…both parties ignored the voice of the people, not over prudent judgment, but in favor of smaller but far better funded special interest groups.

For Hillary Clinton’s bid for the White House in 2016 that spells big trouble. The Progressive base is less and less enamored with Clinton, as early polls, and this is still a very early race, in favor of Sanders. Clinton felt that heat when newcomer Sanders garnering 208 votes against Clinton’s 252 votes in a Wisconsin Straw Poll. It was not an aberration. Throughout June that trend continued. While Clinton won narrowly in the New Hampshire primary against Senator Barack Obama 2008 she might not be able to stave off a serious challenge by Sanders. Recent polls, with less than a year to the primary show Sanders steadily gaining ground with 31% to Clinton’s 41%, according to a Suffolk University poll looking at 500 likely Democratic primary voters. http://www.suffolk.edu/academics/10738.php

That terrifies a Press who on one hand has alternately exalted and vilified Hillary Clinton as the presumptive Democratic nominee. The Republicans and the Right has rallied fully all of their resources and vitriol into a decades long feud going back to President Clinton’s trouncing of George Bush Sr. in 1992. Squandering energy on exaggerated or manufactured scandals has only done minor damage to Clinton. That Press is simply playing to its own already decidedly anti-Clinton base. All the while Sanders builds steadily, drawing a Progressive and Liberal base deeply disappointed in the Obama administration, and in a political hierarchy, including Clinton, whom they feel no longer speaks or fights for poor and working class Americans.

In 2007 Obama promised that he was, “in this race to tell the corporate lobbyists in Washington that their days of setting the agenda are over.” Once in office Obama filled his administration with lobbyists, including Monsanto executives, Wall Street insiders like Larry Summers as his chief financial advisor and former lobbyist Tom Wheeler, and outspoken opponent of Net Neutrality and a lobbyists for both the cell phone industry and cable television. He further soured and alienated the base when he and his justice department refused to hold banks and those responsible for the economic collapse. Instead they w ere bailed out while, as the Occupy movement railed in 2011, the people got sold out. That disenfranchised base feels betrayed by a refusal to hold banks accountable for the financial crisis, equivocations on climate and the TPP, NSA spying on Americans, immigration and more.

It is all about the base. While the media would love to claim credit for the mistrust for Hillary Clinton, it was Hillary and the Progressive and Democratic base which is leaning in greater and greater numbers to Sanders. She is trapped by the very media she feuds with, playing to cameras with messages so broad that compel her into being overly cautious, and appears to be cozy to lobbyists and special interest groups to an alarming degree. In April she hired Jerry Crawford, a Monsanto lobbyist as a campaign adviser. Not surprising, since earlier she spoke in favor of so-called genetically modified organisms, GMOs, saying that she stood,” in favor of using seeds and products that have a proven track record….And to continue to try to make the case for those who are skeptical that they may not know what they’re eating already. The question of genetically modified food or hybrids has gone on for many years. And there is again a big gap between what the facts are and what perceptions are.” In mid June she hosted a fundraiser with a top pro-TPP lobbying firm.

These are issues that pit her directly in opposition to the Democratic base, and to the majority of Progressive and Liberal voters. When pressed she equivocates and postures on issues, which the base immediately views as a dodge. That does not sow trust or create confidence. By contrast, Sanders has never wavered from clear positions and his critical positions against the TPP, banks and GMOs and his support for net neutrality. While Clinton is forced to waste energy and money posturing, Sanders, the would-be statesman, is reaping the benefits of an all too scarce commodity lost to America’s political landscape: Honesty.

Who would have figured?

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DARK HORSE: Bernie Sanders 2016

He is unassuming and professorial in appearance, with brushed white hair and wide eye glasses. At a glance one might almost expect that with rolled up shirt sleeves and loosed tie that Bernie Sanders, born September 8th 1941, just three months before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, that he just finished grading a stack of English papers, or concluded a patient exam. He slouches a bit and talks with his hands in a way reminiscent of a conductor conducting and orchestra. Those unfamiliar with Sanders say he should smile more. His smile is warm with a hint of irreverence. His words are chosen with great economy, but without hesitation. Like an aural roadmap of his life, Sanders ubiquitous Brooklyn accent is softened and tempered from nearly a half century in his adopted home of Vermont. Sanders is decidedly non political, perhaps the only current elected official in Washington DC never to run a negative ad. He is the biggest political story of the 2016 Presidential election.

Prior to March of 2014 most Americans knew little of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. While Republican candidates were lining up for the GOP ticket the Democrats were growing ever discontent over the prospect that Hillary Clinton had been ordained as the sole Democrat candidate. On May 26th Sanders officially announced his candidacy from Vermont to a virtual media blackout. Almost no one carried the announcement live in contrast to republican Rick Santorum a day earlier or Marco Rubio in April whose speeches were carried live on FOX News and on conservative radio talk shows around the country.

The national media relegated Sanders to a long shot. Almost two months into his rapidly growing grassroots campaign, they still show him little respect, instead the media clings to the Hillary brand. Maybe that is a good thing for now. He was dismissed and derided as a nobody and a socialist. Social media picked up and drove his story. Sanders was not just saying what progressives and liberals alike wanted to hear, like other candidates. Unlike those other candidates his record and actions mirrors his rhetoric.

“I voted against the war in Iraq, he told MSNBC’s Ed Schultz on May 28th 2015, “I believe in a nation in which someone who works 40 hours per week should not live in poverty. I believe in a nation in which everyone gets a fair shot, in which we don’t have massive income inequality.“

All of this happened amid a bitter political fight in Washington over the Trans Pacific Partnership trade pact and an effort by the Obama administration to fast-track the TPP through the House and Senate, avoiding lengthy debates over the specifics of the agreement. Clinton, courting Union votes was inconsistent on her position regarding the TPP. Unions and a great majority of Progressives and Liberals vehemently opposed both fast track and the TPP, which many dubbed NAFTA on steroids, referring to the North American Free Trade Agreement championed by Clinton’s husband, President Bill Clinton.

While the Obama administration asserts that the TPP will improve working conditions and wages for workers in Asia-Pacific countries-the agreement excludes China-the experience of other similarly structured agreements would tend to discredit that possibility. Though the actual text of the TPP has been kept a secret, including from lawmakers, parts of the text have been leaked and posted to Wiki-leaks on the internet. Less talked about are the ISDS or “investor-to-state dispute settlement “ courts which would allow corporate run arbitration boards to decide and impose damage awards against states and the federal government or to overturn US law, including constitutionally “protected” civil rights.

Far-fetched? Wording similar to that found in other pro-corporate trade agreements is reported to be found throughout the TPP. Critics and observers point to growing abuse by corporations in ISDS courts to the detriment of workers and sovereign governments. For example, a Swedish company is currently suing Germany for a decision to begin phasing out nuclear power in favor of clean and renewable energy sources.

Egypt’s decision to raise its minimum wage was met by a lawsuit from a Multinational company, the Veolia Group, according to France’s Le Monde Diplomatique. Veolia decided that the increase in the minimum wage was simply too much. Under the NAFTA agreement, the Canadian Company Methanex sued the government when California decided to prohibit the use of a gasoline additive. The government ultimately prevailed in the case, but at a monumental cost in court and legal fees.

These are just three of numerous examples of the sort of corporate assault against the treasury and the constitution the United States might face in ISDS courts. There is well placed concern about environmental and human rights abuses which could result from the agreement. It is conceivable, and even likely, as with the Egyptian minimum wage case, that the government could be sued and journalists jailed for writing or reporting pieces that could be argued resulted in lost revenue for corporations.

Moreover, the TPP was touted as producing jobs for Americans, yet lawmakers could not agree on a key provision of the fats track bill which would set aside one billion Dollars for US workers displaced by TPP. Even more, it could have a disastrous and destabilizing effect on other global markets, particularly emerging markets like Africa. It was that duplicitous nature which hardened many Americans against the agreement, a position that Sanders has remained very consistent and very clear about his distrust for the agreement.

Recall that many refer to TPP as NAFTA on steroids. NAFTA itself had disastrous effects on both the US and Mexico. In 2011 Dustin Ensinger wrote in Economy In Crisis that,”
highly subsidized corn flooding the Mexican market has displaced millions of rural farmers…” and that, “Mexican officials had promised that NAFTA would result in the “export of goods, not people.” That, however, has turned out to be far from reality. Since NAFTA was signed into law, illegal immigrants in the U.S. has increased to 12 million today from 3.9 million in 1993, accounting for an overall increase of over 300 percent.

There is ample reason to believe TPP will prove at least as damaging to the US economy and to be detrimental to foreign workers as well. Sanders, then an Independent representative from Vermont noted no on NAFTA, a position he has never waffled over. (http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/01/01/1255736/-NAFTA-at-20-An-Unhappy-Birthday-and-a-Look-at-the-Roll-Call-Votes-on-Free-Trade-Deals)

Last February on the Senate floor sanders was unequivocally opposed to both NAFTA and TPP:

I think it’s obvious for anyone who has taken a look at this issue that is the TPP is just a new, easy way for corporations to shut down in America and to send jobs abroad. The United States, it is estimated, would lose more than 130,000 to Vietnam and Japan alone if the Trans Pacific Partnership goes into effect.
…and the reason for that is my understanding is that the minimum wage is 56 cents an hour — 56 cents an hour. when you’re dealing with a country like Vietnam…Corporate America has said we want these trade policies and the leaders of both parties have said, yeah, that’s what we will do. I think it is time to say enough is enough. This country is in a major race to the bottom. Workers are working longer hours for lower wages. No American worker should be force to compete with desperate workers around the world who are making pennies an hour…

Beyond the obvious issues and details of TPP which the Obama administration and many republicans and democrats alike support, the way this agreement has been hidden from scrutiny and debate speaks directly to the way this nation is governed and how it responds to its constituents. More than 2000 grassroots organizations and tens of thousands of Americans called congress voicing their displeasure over TPP and the fast track vote. The vote defeating the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) bill, which also halted the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) fast track bill from reaching President Obama’s desk was 126-302. Most observers were quick to point out that the defeat of TAA and TPA were hardly victories for those opposed to TPP. Many of the republican nay votes were more likely partisan in nature, continuing the obstructionist tactics characterizing much of Obama’s presidency. Congress and the senate were quickly at work on a compromise bill. In truth both parties ignored the voice of the people, not over prudent judgment, but in favor of smaller but far better funded special interest groups.

Listen Saturday’s from 11am-1pm to WC Turck, Brian Murray and guests on Chicago’s real alternative media, AM1680, Q4 radio, streaming at www.que4.org.
CAM00236WC Turck is an author, artist, playwright and talk radio host in Chicago. He has been called the most dangerous voice on the Left. His new book “A Tragic Fate: is an unflinching look at the events leading up to the shooting down of Malaysia Air Flight 17.” His first novel, “Broken” was recommended by NAMI for its treatment of PTSD. In 2006 he published “Everything for Love,” a memoir of his experiences during the siege of Sarajevo. He wrote and produced two critically acclaimed plays, “Occupy my Heart” and “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden.” He works with the homeless and foreclosure victims in Chicago. He partners in a weekly radio show dedicated to issues, society and politics with cohost, activist and artist Brian Murray For more information, past shows, videos and articles, visit www.revolutioandbeer.com

The Illinois Policy Institute (IPI) is a conservative think tank with offices in Chicago and Springfield, Illinois, and member of the State Policy Network. IPI is a member of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) as of 2011. IPI is also a member of ALEC’s Health and Human Services Task Force and Education Task Force. Senior Budget and Tax Policy Analyst, Amanda Griffin-Johnson, presented model legislation (the “State Employee Health Savings Account Act”) to the HHS task force at ALEC’s 2011 annual meeting.[4] Collin Hitt, Director of Education Policy, is a private sector member of the Education Task Force representing IPI. He sponsored the “Local Government Transparency Act” at the ALEC 2011 States and Nation Policy Summit. In its 2006 annual report the Cato Institute states that it made a grant of $50,000 to the Illinois Policy Institute. The Cato Institute is a libertarian think tank founded by Charles G. Koch and funded by the Koch brothers. .

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Updated: Don’t Be A DemAss Part 1


“Abstract promises about increased jobs and exports misrepresent the real overall effects of trade on the U.S. economy. Trade both creates and destroys jobs. While exports tend to support domestic employment, imports lead to job displacement: As imports are substituted for domestically produced goods, production that supports domestic jobs falls, displacing existing jobs and preventing new job creation.” (source)

So, we here at Revolution and Beer don’t wear anyone’s jersey but our own. There is a very cultish atmosphere surrounding Hillary Clinton’s (#Hillary2016) prospects of a 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. It a bit frightening, and it seems the behavior of this cult only promises to further isolate the working class from the Democratic Party, and mainstream political discourse. If you want to see what kinds of creatures step into fill those voids, look at what’s happened in North Carolina. Hell, look at the leadership produced by the Tea Party movement.

As my father used to say, “never trust a fanatic of any kind.” That’s straight from the mouth of a true believer in our government, longtime government employee, and committed democrat. I, of course, did not come out that way.

Yesterday, I got banned from a page supporting democrats in 2016 (actually, just Hillary I learned) for asking questions. I grew up in a small town in the south, and witnessed first hand what happened as NAFTA was being implemented, and big tobacco was being pursued in court. It was devistating to the small town economy, and leads me to a mantra that many of my good friends are familiar with: “The South may never vote another Clinton into office.” Admittedly, this is a personal soar part for me. I’ve had many other experiences as I’ve ventured into Mexico, and formed deep friendships with the real left in this country. All of these experiences have lead me to denounce the neo-liberal, right-leaning policies that were brought into the mainstream political spectrum by Clinton and the like. It lead me to support Nader in 2000 (I know, booooo!!! I lost Gore the election). However, this first-hand experience; which became very personal as my father lost his non-profit job and went to work in the few remaining manufacturing plants as a temp worker, has always been my main reason for turning a cocked-eye to knee-jerk support for #Hillary2016… until I ran into this:



I was speaking from my heart; my queries were sincere. There are typos, and I wasn’t citing sources, but planned to return and provide them. This is very real to me.

When I asked why one of them was punctuating every sentence with exclamation points, I was accused of insulting him, and they pretty much swarmed on me. There were some great off-thread posts on the page specifically targeted at me, and I started getting private messages from David Simms, who is an admin for the page. If you want dirt on centrist democrats, and you want to see how they’re followers are no better than the tea-party ideologues they claim so much to despise, I highly recommend this page.

Part 2 will be the “chat” I had with David Simms, who banned me from the group. I did get rather angry during that one. I’ve never actually intentionally trolled anyone, but I’m starting to feel inspired.

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