\\\\\\\\ Left Leaning Lines

It’s definitely an under-represented perspective that doesn’t get talked about enough. Compromise is built into effective governance, which is why we need someone “radically” left in such an important position.


Not just that, but also someone pragmatic enough to know the difference between campaigning and governance. Thankfully we have that in Bernie. (if not in all of Bernie’s supporters)


So I was going to post this as a follow-up to another post of mine in, I guess, this thread’s strange counterpart, but I think it could spark more interest here:

Being generally keen on distributed and decentralized technology or infrastructure and, notably, Ethereum in particular, I’ve followed the work around RxC (that of Glen Weyl and Vitalik Buterin, particularly, having read Radical Markets and Liberal Radicalism, for instance). Of particular interest to me was the concept of Quadratic Voting, which is the subject of this article.

Anyway, I don’t think it’s terribly contentious to say that electoral systems the world over fail to live up to the grand visions onto which they were tacked.

On quite another matter (or is it?), I couldn’t read that WP piece because it’s got a paywall that, frankly, I’m just not going to ascend. I found another source, however:

Not exactly earth-shattering, and not exactly the same as relegating MfA to the back-burner right out of the gate (if anywhere at all) as every other candidate has already seen fit to do. I still have yet to hear any reasonable argument for how a public option necessarily gets us to MfA or is at all a vital step (do we seriously think it’s going warm people or lawmakers up to the notion in the short or longterm?). It may be a necessary compromise in certain respects as a last-resort, but one in which I anticipate a whole heap of baggage to set back the entire effort (arguably the more worthy and indispensable goal of universal healthcare provision).

I still say that if lawmakers oppose it, let them commit that opposition to the public record. I don’t know that I have much else to say on the matter, given that the only substantial development in the interim has been a generally successful start to Sanders’ campaign.


As people have said elsewhere, maybe Bernie won’t be able to get his whole agenda passed, but you don’t come to the negotiation table with less than what you want.

I also am somewhat amused/bemused by all the people who seem to think Bernie, as old and experienced as he is and as long as he has been fighting some of these battles, is somehow naive and doesn’t understand how politics work as well as a random forum commenter.


Thing is, Republicans have made it clear that they will block even things they support if they’re proposed by Democrats. See Merrick Garland, the Affordable Care Act, the list goes on and on. Their bad-faith dealings have virtually guaranteed a Democratic party that moves to the left.

There’s no sense in compromising before an issue is even brought to the negotiation table, so you might as well shoot for the stars.

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Yes, but you have to get hired first.

I completely agree that Sanders is politically savvy in a way that is often unappreciated.

For instance he does not stray from his healthcare and workers’ rights framework, even on issues where privately he might have more to say - like military spending.

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on the AOC comments, i have a twitter list of mainstream/establishment pundits/media folks to try to keep tabs on what’s going on out of my own bubble. there’s been a fair amount of chatter from extremely mad people about how unbelievably hypocritical it is for bernie bros to now admit medicare for all isn’t realistic after purity testing the rest of the candidates for failing to live up to sander’s plan.

i truly don’t understand this. i’m fairly certain the idea that sanders alone doesn’t have the power to pass M4A has been unambiguously clear to sanders’ base since, forever? here’s chapo trap house, who have to be the most visible/despised people in the “dirtbag left”, talking about this over a year ago before bernie even announced:

I just want to say one thing—realistically, I don’t even think—even if, best case scenario in 2020, Bernie wins and they bring in a whole fresh batch of Bernie baby bros in congress to back him up, I don’t think you’re going to get Medicare for All in the near future anyway. Because we have the United States Senate and the Supreme Court to deal with, and there is not at this point the political capital, the political mobilized force to side step or neutralize those institutions. What Medicare for All does, what a Bernie campaign would do, what this entire political season is going to do––if it’s going to have any value at all, and that’s still up in the air––is to heighten the contradictions within the democratic coalition, and expose the ideological fault lines that have until this point been totally covered up, intentionally, by people like [pod save america].

The reason these guys don’t want Medicare for All––it’s not because they’re too goddamn smart, it’s not because they’re too damn wonk, and they understand how complicated it is––it’s because they have vested interests that are opposed to that reform. By saying “these are two distinct approaches to politics and policy, and that yes, ideology matters,” that is the only way that electoral politics has any meaning in the near future.

You’re going to hear a lot of obfuscations about how, oh, we just want to expand access to Medicare, or just have some kind of government public option that’s going to coexist with private health insurance––uh, that’s not going to work. And if you are on that side, you are carrying water for capital. I understand it if you’re Kamela Harris and you say that, because presumably you or your allies take a lot of money from the health insurance companies. If you’re not getting paid by anyone to say that––you’re a stooge, that’s it. The existence of a trillion dollars a year in profits going into private hands from the health insurance industry is a knife at all of our throats. And any sort of attempt to accommodate that trillion dollar revenue stream by making some sort of minor reform, that’s going to fall flat on its face, even if there is a public option––that’s what they attempted in the Obama administration, and we ended up with the ACA which pisses everyone off.

That’s what they forget because they always assume the end point––because they’re never thinking of politics, they’re always thinking of policy, because that’s what makes them think they’re smart––even though you only get the policy by having an effective politics that gets you in that room in the first place––they always assume they’re in the room. And so for them, ok, you’re trying to get a focus group of slack jawed yokels to sign on for Medicare for All, but they’re too scared of the alternative––because that’s how they see the hogs, obviously––but the idea is, if you’ve campaigned on Medicare for All, it’s not just a slogan anymore, it’s a concept, it is an alternative. You’re presenting an alternative to this shit world we’re in, that people can be like, ok maybe I’m not so scared of losing my insurance anymore. And also, that’s how you get people to fucking vote for it, because it’s simple, and it engages people, and it’s something that they can grasp quickly, any of these fucking affordability alternatives––they know this, it’s just Obamacare all over again. It has to be, if you’re preserving private insurance, if you’re preserving employer based insurance, then it’s a rube goldberg machine of subsidies and plans and shit like that, and it’s the same thing that alienates and makes people check out every time when you’re trying to propose reform.

You have to go to war with private health insurance interest if you want to make any structural change to the health care sector, and that’s a fact.

this is reflective of the vast majority of conversations i’ve had with sanders supporters if m4a comes up. it’s really crazy to me to think that a large chunk of people––a lot of them media professionals whose entire profession revolves around talking and writing about politics––have somehow never encountered this point of view until AOC said it??


When she says it, it carries a different kind of weight.


It loses a lot of nuance in the “OMG news cycle,” however:

Yeah, I’ve blocked The Hill in Google News. OMG indeed.

Such purity. Do I seem like a frequent purveyor of The Hill? Rising is among the little bit of their output I do appreciate:

Probably not in your wheelhouse, either, but certainly distinct from The Hill, at large.

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Not sure I have a wheelhouse!

Rising has caught my eye as of late and I can’t tell if I appreciate or can’t stand them. Somewhere in the middle, I suppose. Krystal and Saagar are both clearly well-intentioned and intelligent folks, but their presentation style can be…grating, I guess? Inflammatory, if still pretty level-headed. And Saagar really needs to learn to not trip over his own words.

Mind blowing name, though, Krystal Ball. Wow.

been thinking more and more about this lately - as a bernie guy there are many bad outcomes, but bloomberg is the absolute nightmare scenario for me. i mostly consider myself a ‘vote blue no matter who’ person (though like this author i am thoroughly grossed out by pete), but i’d probably skip the top of the ticket if bloomberg was the nominee.

his record is obviously horrible in a hundred ways, but the baldness of his effort to buy the election outright is the most disturbing part for me. love trump or hate him, you can’t deny that he has a huge constituency (the extent to which he acts in the interests of that constituency is another story). bloomberg’s just got the very very rich. he’s trump without the facade of populism, and possibly with a much more effective staff of likeminded authoritarians.

…perhaps the most compelling reason not to vote for him is what his nomination would reveal about American democracy. It would mean that the oligarch class has so thoroughly corrupted the system that the voice of the people is drowned. His entire candidacy is a cartoonishly blatant instance of how money can corrupt democracy. Right now he is scooping up thousands of campaign operatives and field organizers by offering them as much as $6,000 a month — creating a desperate shortage for other campaigns. He’s racking up endorsement after endorsement — of representatives, mayors, and one governor, so far — who have cashed checks from his vast empire of bribery. His nomination would mean the Democratic Party can be “bought over the counter like so many pounds of cheese.

does anyone around here have a less bleak view of the bloomberg campaign? truly would love to hear it, politics has been making me feel bad lately.


Nope, I have exactly the same thoughts on this. I would vote for any other of the Democratic candidates over Trump, though I might not like them – but I will not vote for Bloomberg.

I could make an exception for “buying the election” like this if it were a sort of white hat hacker move. As in, Warren Buffet running on a platform of overturning Citizens United, making other electoral reforms, taxing the super-rich, taking the climate crisis seriously and fixing health care and education.

But what Bloomberg is doing is not absolutely not that. He’s not here to save America from Trump. He’s here to stroke his own ego, and to break the Democratic party and the democratic process at the same time. With his resources he could have primaried Trump as a Republican, but he chose not to.

Aside from the plutarchy angle, Bloomberg has basically no redeeming qualities. I’d have a tough time voting for him against Trump if he legitimately entered the primary process along with everyone else and didn’t spend nine figures saturating the world with ads. And in fact I don’t think he’d have gotten very far if he did, because money is all he has.

My nightmare scenario is Bernie taking a plurality of delegates but falling short of a majority, and the Democratic party establishment deciding to throw the bone to Bloomberg out of fear of “socialism.”


I’m just hoping he makes an ass out of himself in the debate and that’s that. :crossed_fingers:


i’m absolutely disgusted by the reaction he’s receiving. if it’s bloomberg or trump and i thought it would be close in CA i would probably vote for trump, and that would be so painful for me i would not even be able to get out of bed for the rest of the year. but if bloomberg were to win, i honestly think democracy at a federal level in the US is just over. it’s just going to be billionaires buying everything from then to the revolution. no no no no no no


The only good news is that the average voter doesn’t really know anything about him. Get him on the debate stage. I am sure more candidates than Bernie would love to throw shots at him. Another positive is that he drowned out Pete’s momentum, who is honestly just like Bloomberg but without actual power, If Pete doesn’t go on the offensive, Bloomberg will continue to siphon support. Bernie’s base of support isn’t going anywhere.

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One thing interesting about the Bloomberg run, is that no liberal conspiracy types have made any claims about his being in cahoots with Trump. Of course, my political views would say that they are in cahoots based on class interests, but I might have expected at least a small cadre of smoky room ‘they’re working together’ types. Instead, they save the conspiracies for sanders and tulsi. Definitely some mask slippage there.

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