Democrat/Liberal Soul Searching

Huntn

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I turned on CNN and they were asking a Democrat why they didn't win as big as they thought they would and they had zero election updates since yesterday so I just turned them off. So tired of cable news right now.
It was stated today on National Public Radio that Liberals/Democrats need to do some soul searching and ask why can they only reach a little over half of the populace?

The answer seemed to be, offer the people hope. Now granted that is simplistic and vague, but I think there is something there especially when you have blue collar workers at least some of them buying into The Head Despicable’s lies. Sweet little lies are easier to swallow than hard realities.

What do Democrats/liberals need to do to break through the log jam? Their agenda in the spectrum of a large thriving civilization should be a slam dunk.
 
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Scepticalscribe

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At this stage, it looks as though Mr Biden will win the popular vote by an even greater margin than did Secretary Clinton four years ago, polling - if what I have read is correct - the highest number of votes ever cast for a presidential candidate.

Secondly, at this stage, it looks as though Mr Biden will win the electoral college reasonably comfortably.

Thirdly, well, yes, it seems increasingly unlikely that the Democrats will win the Senate, let alone manage to claim 60 seats.

And fourthly, yes, unfortunately, Mr Trump also secured an extraordinary degree of support in terms of the number of people who ticked his name on the ballot, something that I still think both disgraceful and shameful, but that is a topic for a separate, or different thread.

Now, some of this comes down to the fact that there has been a historically high turn out, and the enduring and persistent nature of a deeply divided and increasingly polarised society.

But, but, but, I really think that the Democrats would do well to challenge - to robustly challenge - disappointed narratives (on the left) and disingenuous narratives (on the right) that are seeking to frame this as "a defeat" for the Democrats.

For, of course, it is nothing of the sort - even if the victory - when it comes - is not as complete as I would have liked, and that being in office will lead to inevitable, and occasionally unsavoury compromises.

When it comes, the victory needs to be claimed, and owned, - and owned proudly - and the electorate thanked.
 
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Eric

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It was stated today on National Public Radio that Liberals/Democrats need to do some soul searching and ask why can they only reach a little over half of the populace?

The answer seemed to be, offer the people hope. Now granted that is simplistic and vague, but I think there is something there especially when you have blue collar workers at least some of them buying into the The Head Despicable’s lies. Sweet little lies are easier to swallow than hard realities.

What do Democrats/liberals need to do to break through the log jam? Their agenda in the spectrum of a large thriving civilization should be a slam dunk.
I just posted this in a private forum but since this thread is asking I'll also share it here. :)

I'm hoping things will take a swing toward the middle, I know my friends on the left won't necessarily agree but I think we need some sort of agreements between both parties to truly move things. If it pisses off both sides it's likely decent legislation (IMO) and I do think Biden and McConnell can work together to an extent.

Yes, I know Trump and the Republican led congress were total dicks about everything but we Democrats don't have to be and can get us back to a sense of unity instead of all the division.

Just my .02 (ducks for cover)
 

Huntn

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At this stage, it looks as though Mr Biden will win the popular vote by an even greater margin than did Secretary Clinton four years ago, polling - if what I have read is correct - the highest number of votes ever cast for a presidential candidate.

Secondly, at this stage, it looks as though Mr Biden will win the electoral college reasonably comfortably.

Thirdly, well, yes, it seems increasingly unlikely that the Democrats will win the Senate, let alone manage to claim 60 seats.

And yes, fourthly, unfortunately, Mr Trump also secured an extraordinary degree of support in terms of the number of people who ticked his name on the ballot, something that I still think both disgraceful and shameful, but that is a topic for a separate, or different thread.

Now, some of this comes down to the fact that there has been a historically high turn out, and the enduring and persistent nature of a deeply divided and increasingly polarised society.

But, but, but, I really think that the Democrats would do well to challenge - to robustly challenge - disappointed narratives (on the left) and disingenuous narratives (on the right) that are seeking to frame this as "a defeat" for the Democrats.

For, of course, it is nothing of the sort - even if the victory - when it comes - is not as complete as I would have liked, and that being in office will lead to inevitable, and occasionally unsavoury compromises.

When it comes, the victory needs to be claimed, and owned, - and owned proudly - and the electorate thanked.
I hate to say it but the quality of the sheep must be examined and the message massaged, but better yet, the challenge of getting people educated, although that kind of a statement has controversy associated with it.

I just posted this in a private forum but since this thread is asking I'll also share it here. :)

I'm hoping things will take a swing toward the middle, I know my friends on the left won't necessarily agree but I think we need some sort of agreements between both parties to truly move things. If it pisses off both sides it's likely decent legislation (IMO) and I do think Biden and McConnell can work together to an extent.

Yes, I know Trump and the Republican led congress were total dicks about everything but we Democrats don't have to be and can get us back to a sense of unity instead of all the division.

Just my .02 (ducks for cover)
The thing is just a short 10 years ago, a two bit Dick Wad like Thump would never have been considered yet alone elected. This phenomena has to be examined. Mass breaking bad or is the stupid in some of us being drawn out? This tolerance for corruption and incompetence in the hope of successful achievement of a wedge issue at the cost of all else is most alarming. Nationally it’s a recipe for disaster If enough imbeciles succumb to the con.
 
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Scepticalscribe

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I just posted this in a private forum but since this thread is asking I'll also share it here. :)

I'm hoping things will take a swing toward the middle, I know my friends on the left won't necessarily agree but I think we need some sort of agreements between both parties to truly move things. If it pisses off both sides it's likely decent legislation (IMO) and I do think Biden and McConnell can work together to an extent.

Yes, I know Trump and the Republican led congress were total dicks about everything but we Democrats don't have to be and can get us back to a sense of unity instead of all the division.

Just my .02 (ducks for cover)

I've replied to this post in the same private forum; however, as this discussion is taking place here, (thanks @Huntn) it makes a lot more sense to post it here.

Yes, but.....yes but.....yes but....

That presupposes the existence of goodwill on both sides, a willingness to accept that some matters are best dealt with on a bipartisan level (which means compromise on both sides), reserving a number of areas for one's own respective political grandstanding or for the preservation of political purity.

Starting with the Newt Gingrich era, the GOP decided to play politics differently, a sort of scorched earth policy, by thrashing the entire legislative programme - where possible - of the Democrats.

Re the Supreme Court: If the GOP had simply voted down President Obama's nominee, Merrick Garland, after a debate - used their political muscle in an acceptable, (well, barely acceptable), well, at least, a recognised manner, a debate, followed by a vote, and concluded with an inevitable defeat, one could grit one's teeth, accept the defeat, and mutter "that's politics, win some, lose some".

But, their intense - passionate and fierce - desire to show as much contempt, and as little respect, as possible for Barack Obama (and nothing will persuade me that there wasn't some degree of racism - conscious or subconscious - in how they treated proposals coming from his administration, yes policy initiatives mattered, but skin tones mattered, too, and they wished to humiliate him) by not even allowing discussion of his nominee - coupled with their flagrant contempt for precedent they themselves had set by ramming through the subsequent nomination of Amy Coney Barrett - suggest to me that unless Mitch McConnell discovers a compelling need to leave some sort of lasting legislative legacy (and not just a stuffed Supreme Court) behind, attempts to promote bipartisanship will simply signal (to the GOP) Democrat weakness, rather than a wish to compromise, or seek solutions to common or national problems..
 
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lizkat

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That presupposes the existence of goodwill on both sides, a willingness to accept that some matters are best dealt with on a bipartisan level (which means compromise on both sides), reserving a number of areas for grandstanding or the preservation of political purity.

There will be a lot of post-election examination of margins in all the districts, for one thing. You can't ignore your opposition in a consituency if you want to be re-elected. People on both sides of the fence are unhappy, it's that we differ on how government should be in the picture on solutions.

Status quo won't do though for anyone, after what covid-19 has done to the big picture. A stimulus program will have to be bipartisan due to the House having the purse strings and being in Dem hands but the Senate likely having the power to second-guess the spending. So that's a good thing in a way on some of the big ticket items we need to move off the languishing pile of stuff McConnell has tabled all this time. And as noted before, McConnell and Biden are not strangers to negotiations nor to each other in the Senate back in the day.

At this point we progressives should just be on knees with moderate Dems thanking each other as Biden voters in 2020 -- for simply making it likely that the "gotcha, Obama!!" anti-science antics in the agencies will stop now: absurdist, vindictive stuff like removing the term "climate change" from anywhere assorted agencies happened to spot it in their websites or research paper links...

...and are we all aware that some agencies not only took stuff off their websites and then upon complaints from scholars and the press made it available as FOIA material but if one actually filed an FOIA request for some of the stuff, what was returned was hundreds of pages of redacted content... but it was unclassified material, and before the Trump era it was all just up on the web for the whole planet to read in the clear. Our taxpayer dollars have been spent on puerile mischief by the gotcha scorecard keepers. So.Much.Winning.

I could live to be two hundred years old and never get over my shock that such a toxic level of destructive politics now routinely operates in the country of my birth. That said, it gives me pause now to hear any sentient person say "but this is not really America".

Sorry, but no: this is really America. Even with my rose colored glasses on i think that now, having seen how things have gone in the past year in particular. At least with the 2020 presidential vote we may have stopped some of the decline in its tracks this season. There are so many ticking time-bombs in the EOs and legislation that rolled back regulations made to protect us. So many amends and repairs to be made.

Still, it looks like we can focus on bailing out the boat now and at least quit wondering if the captain is drilling holes in the hull while we sleep.

The big question is what about the part of the crew that voted for Trump? Do they want to help patch up the ship of state with Biden at the helm, or will they refuse outreach from the new administration? It will be interesting to find out who really wants to help rebuild this country and who just wants to stay on what amounts to the Trump-Bannon "burn it all down" course.
 

Huntn

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Unfortunately, we still have to deal with McConnell. He’s already threatened to block any of Biden’s cabinet picks. Until he’s gone, there can be no meeting in the middle.
This is a completely unbelievable thing for this Jack Ass to say, but he’s already shown that if he can he will, fuck protocol, the President does not need Cabinet members and he would do that? This is scorched earth and based on the premise that Biden wins, I’d hope for a Republican Congressional blood bath in 2022.

The thing is the Democrats can’t become liberal ass hat versions of the GOP on the left. But if they control the whole show, it would be time to put in place hard core rules that reigns in the kind of shit the GOP under McConnell has been pulling.

You know he‘s a mini-Trump, a sociopath when it comes to standards that make for a functional government, things like actually following rules, respect across the isle, not doing whatever he can get away. I’m no expert, but these rules that Congress follow must have the rule and penalty of law, and the Party that is in charge, should be obligated to hold confirmation hearings when they are needed, not rely on the fuck you standard. 👀
 

lizkat

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@Huntn I get how you feel and every Democrat must feel like that at the moment.

But let it be what it is for now. Political passions are riding high any time a close presidential election is still in vote-counting (and doubtless lawsuit-filing) phases. That goes for voters and it also certainly goes for party leaders... and double down for a viciously partisan Senate Majority Leader who's pretty sure he's still the majority leader of his chamber in the next session of Congress....

While not excusing the "so much winning" attitude that any elected official has on tap right now for public commentary, it can be best to step back and look at all this partisan not-quite-post-election blather as we might when in some other country a leader says something we know full well may be aimed at peer sovereign states --enemies, frenemies-- but is actually meant for domestic consumption.

I remember for instance when Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was starting to lose his grip on favor with even the ayatollahs in Iran due to inability to meet economic promises to the Iranian people. His erstwhile rather pro forma death-to-America exhortations took on a more strident tone than back in the day when he was extremely popular with his constituency as well as w/ the clerics, and he had sent an extraordinary letter to Bush 43: that was a letter which, whatever its actual intent, certainly more than just blurred the previous and longstanding red lines of "no negotiation" that both countries had arrived at for their own strategic reasons.​
But by the time Iran's economy was falling apart and taking Ahmadinejad with it, no one even remembered that letter from Iran to the USA with its proposal for new ways of looking at their relationship.​
By then Ahmadinejad was all about distracting his countrymen from problems he had not solved and so "Iran" became synonymous in the world press once again with photos of murals depicting a violent end to America at the hands of the Grand Ayatollah.​

Well so keeping that shift in mind but getting back to the US and 2020, a lot of what both sides and their operatives are saying right now in the wake of Election Day is meant for their own party's adherents. Bipartisan solutions to problems in the USA are not the stuff of our political discourse while the counting house clerks are still tallying the votes, not even in less strident times than we've been experiencing so far in the 21st century.

The GOP is about to vacate the White House, one whose occupant they've had to stretch all credulity to portray as a fit President of the USA for the past four years. They are throwing whatever spaghetti they can find on the wall now in trying to portray that loss as a win... and in fact they have made inroads in the 2018 House and will probably retain control of the Senate. But how sweet it had been for Mitch McConnell to have had that malleable rogue in the White House, eh?

Trump distracted his followers for four years straight with tweet bombs and "watch me piss off the Dems with this move, baby!" -- while McConnell and company in the GOP steamrolled in a largely undiscussed agenda of rule changes and legislative tweaks that were not exactly what Trump had campaigned on in making his populist appeal in 2016. Trump didn't care. He had an audience of hundreds of millions. His fans didn't care either. They got a tax cut, deregulation... and some quietly ticking time bombs under their butts, due to deferred impacts that few in the USA have so far even realized are coming down the track no matter who's in the White House.

But going forward? It's good to remember that most congressional districts and all the states do have both red and blue leaning constituents. Biden and McConnell have separate but compelling reasons to want to show a divided America that self-described and/or actual "winners" on opposite sides of a fence can get things done "for America" in Washington, and their professional encounters --many in pretty strong disagreements that still ended up with bipartisan accomplishments in the end -- do go back decades in the politics of Washington, DC.

Meanwhile Americans on their own sides of political fences will eventually hear their still partisan leaders talking across a table, seeking and necessarily finding common ground that leaves those "so much winning" hot button items in the wings for some other time and focuses on public health (and coverage), jobs, infrastructure and repairing some of the excesses of the Trump era's anti-Obama obsession. Some of the moves might be bandaids. That's ok too. Baby steps.

And why is that? Everyone knows the status of our economy right now is precarious due to covid-19. Some also realize it was already precarious. A precarious economy will threaten every incumbent of a government that hasn't even been sworn in yet. But the bottom line of a prospective difference in 2021 compared to 2017 is nearly cast in stone right now: that Joe Biden is not Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell knows it, no matter the configuration of Congress.
 

lizkat

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I figure if McConnell follows through on these threats, Biden can do like Trump and appoint “acting” secretaries of whatever.

Yep, and there are probably a whole lotta reckonings like that coming down the road. Pretty sure McConnell does realize that although I wouldn't expect him to acknowledge or accept the boomerangs of the GOP's machinations during the Trump era.

What's unclear of course is how far Trump's court picks now sitting on SCOTUS will go in daring to demonstrate they are less "originalist" than memorious of how they landed on the bench. In favor of our rule of law is that at least they've all actually read the Constitution.
 

Alli

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What's unclear of course is how far Trump's court picks now sitting on SCOTUS will go in daring to demonstrate they are less "originalist" than memorious of how they landed on the bench. In favor of our rule of law is that at least they've all actually read the Constitution.
That is the scary part.
 

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Assuming Biden wins, I was initially thinking Republicans will be in a way better “what did we do wrong?” analysis position because there really is no shortage of things done wrong when looking at Trump. But considering how close the race is, they’re actually pretty fucked on trying to figure out their errors, especially for a party that’s repeatedly thrown out morals, rules, laws, dignity, tradition, science, and facts. Which fucked up behavior do they keep? Which do they scrap?
 

Alli

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Assuming Biden wins, I was initially thinking Republicans will be in a way better “what did we do wrong?” analysis position because there really is no shortage of things done wrong when looking at Trump. But considering how close the race is, they’re actually pretty fucked on trying to figure out their errors, especially for a party that’s repeatedly thrown out morals, rules, laws, dignity, tradition, science, and facts. Which fucked up behavior do they keep? Which do they scrap?
Both parties will need to do some deep soul searching.
 

lizkat

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On the soul-searching. I must say I didn't expect to be hanging out in the weeds of House race numbers in 2020 past that of my own Dem congressman who was running (successfully) to keep a flipped seat. But on some slide in Dems' margin in the House, I have to file that under "ok I did not see that coming".

Anyway on the upside of those concerns, here's another good outcome in Georgia, a Dem win in the 7th CD.

https://www.twitter.com/i/web/status/1324798248104697861/
 

Huntn

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Listening to Bernie Sanders this morning who said (paraphrased):
Democrats whole heartedly endorse Medicare for all, some form of single payer health care, and believe employees should work for more than starvation wages.

The working class asked who cares about me? And they voted for Trump because he gave them the rhetoric, nothing more, but it was something. Democrats have to get back on track to keep working class in their corner.
 

DT

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I was going to post this on MR, same thread, but just going to post it here. While I appreciate - and have attempted - some of the same soul searching, hoping for a better country, I have to agree, more-than-not, with the sentiment of this article:


 

Huntn

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I was going to post this on MR, same thread, but just going to post it here. While I appreciate - and have attempted - some of the same soul searching, hoping for a better country, I have to agree, more-than-not, with the sentiment of this article:


I would not ever put it terms that Trump wins even when he loses. He is but the symptom, like the green snot that accompanies a sinus infection, the illness is among us like COVID19, encapsulates the thinking of 70M people in this election. It is cause and effect, we will get what we deserve by our correspondingly good or bad choices and if our destiny is to destroy ourselves, that’s how the cookie crumbles. Maybe we’ll be replaced by something better.

This is not to imply there is not goodness and wisdom among us, but it does suggest there are many of us who are primitive, living in mental caves, trying to steal an extra stick from the neighbors so our burrow can be more comfortable or luxurious.

Ironically this is sometching we lost as we’ve become the predominant species, unlike when we were scattered in small groups a sense of needing to work together to survive. Now for many it’s what can I take from you or horde for my personal comfort? It‘s as if continued civilization in comfort is a given, so if I’m smart enough, I can take, take, take and btw, fuck you.

Yes I’m happy Biden won, but I am thoroughly disillusioned that Trump got 70 million votes. It is not only disgusting, but it’s a bellwether that this fight is not over, not by a long shot. We are too infected. And I believe the motivation is selfishness and just maybe the human race will become a statistic and the epitaph will say instead of saving their species along with the planet, they chose Me over We and destroyed us all. 🥺
 
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Edd

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I could talk at great length about this but I’m pessimistic about swaying Trumpers primarily because of conservative media.

Anything the Dems propose will immediately be painted as an assault on freedoms by Rush and the rest. If the Dems offered free blowjobs for all Alex Jones will convince them it’s a stake in the heart of liberty. It need not make sense.
 
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