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February 28, 2017 06:20 AM UTC

Tuesday Open Thread

  • by: Colorado Pols

“Those who wish to appear wise among fools, among the wise seem foolish.”



10 thoughts on “Tuesday Open Thread

  1. · 

     Here's something encouraging from Equality Case Files:
    Evancho v. Pine-Richland School District (Lambda Legal's suit against a Pennsylvania school district for implementing a new policy that discriminates against transgender students) ; Court issues preliminary injunction, effective March 1, as to plaintiffs based on their Equal Protection claims.

    Let's see if it sets our resident trolls' hair on fire.


    1. The districts are, in effect, instituting a policy restricting the rights of transgender students where no such restriction existed before. Removing someone's rights is, as we've seen repeatedly over the past few years, a much harder case to win than actually winning those rights the first time…

      The only losing scenario for Lambda and the students is for a court to recognize that transgender people aren't recognized as qualifying for protection in the first place, and that cat is pretty much out of the bag at this point in time.

      1. Trump switch removes the arrow of "deference" to administrative agency from lambda's quiver, however.  Legally that may be important.  But I think SCotus is so polarized on this issue than any deference is likely to be two chevrons short of a corporal in any case.

  2. The Liberal Consensus:

    Myth #1: Party unity

    Myth: The goal must be to win back the moderate suburban Trump voters who may soon suffer from buyers’ remorse. Now is not the time to scare voters with anti-corporate rhetoric and broad social democratic programs like free higher education and Medicare for all. Uniting against Trump is all that matters.

    Not quite.

    The energy of the Democratic party comes precisely from those who cherish the hard-hitting vision that Sanders put forth. There is a reason why the Sanders’ rallies were ten times the size of Hillary’s campaign events. Sanders and his followers want to take on the corporate elites both inside and outside the Democratic Party. It would be a disaster to bury that battle under the milquetoast mantra of party unity.

    Myth #2: The moderate middle is the key to victory

    The party establishment is still clinging to the triangulation model perfected by Bill Clinton as he cuddled up to the Wall Street. Ever since, the Democratic Party has tried to tailor its program to independent suburban voters and wealthy donors.

    That model no longer works.

    Myth #3: Economic empowerment

    The mantra of the corporate Democrats is economic empowerment ― making sure that everyone has the opportunity to succeed. Their position is based on the many incorrect assumptions………

    In France every income group has gained over the past 40 years. But in the U.S the bottom has dropped out according to Thomas Piketty:

    We observe a complete collapse of the bottom 50% income share in the US between 1978 and 2015, from 20% to 12% of total income, while the top 1% income share rose from 11% to 20%.

    This has mainly come from tax laws favoring the rich, corporations at the expense of the rest of society.

    Myth #4: The Sanders Program is too radical for America

    Myth: Sanders-style socialism will not be accepted in America. It will be red-baited to death, leading to the defeat of any politician who supports such programs. So the Democratic Party should not promote the Sanders agenda.

    The Cold War is over. Young voters couldn't care less about the socialist label. The Sanders campaign out-polled Hillary among every shade and color of under-30 voters. Free higher education sounds pretty good to those loaded with student debt.

    Similarly, the time has passed for merely defending Obamacare and its dependence on private insurance companies. Medicare for All is a much sounder and cheaper program.

    Myth #5 Americans really don’t care about income inequality

    Americans cherish the idea of getting rich, admire those who become so, and therefore don’t want to upset the income ladder.

    It’s certainly true that most people hold conflicting opinions about wealth in America. However, it is also true that most Americans just don’t have access to information about how extreme inequality really is.

    Myth #6: The Party needs donations from the wealthy

    Myth: To compete with the well-heeled Republicans it is imperative that the Democrats curry favor with wealthy donors. They have no choice.

    Yes they do.

    The Sanders campaign raised more money than the Clinton machine by relying on an enthusiastic army of small donors. To do so again would require having the party and its candidates take on runaway inequality rather than wishing it away.

    Myth #7: Write-off the white working class

    These voters can be reached ― but only if the Democrats break away from their corporate backers and adopt a Sanders-like program. Rather than writing them off, the Party should develop a vast educational effort to engage these disaffected voters in discussion. TV ads and vacuous platform proposals won’t work…..

    It's being observed, understood, refined, coalesced, reinforced by many Democratic opinion-makers, leaders, electeds, activists. 

    Some consultants and campaigns are still ignoring it. Those that are need to buy a clue with some of that cash-on-hand they cherish so much.


  3. Tell me something I don't know.  Pregaming Trump's speech, Chris Mathews said he expected Democrats to sit impassively  "like a Roman phalanx."

    Actually, the massive, mostly immobile, phalanx was a Greek formation.  Romans favored the legion, which alternated soldiers and open space like a checkerboard.  It was much more maneuverable.  

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