Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

For The People -or- For The Billionaires?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, February 23, 2020

Bernie Sanders is the man to beat. He is gathering a full head of steam, and when he selects Elizabeth Warren as his Vice Presidential running mate, together, they will be UNSTOPPABLE!

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders addresses an ecstatic crowd in El Paso, Texas following his Nevada Caucus win.

The irony of ironies, is that they more his opponents within and without the party castigate him, they make the case for him EVEN STRONGER!

After Sander’s Nevada Caucus win, Bloomberg’s campaign manager claimed that Sanders’ campaign “appeals to a small base,” however, as Senator Sanders – and others – have pointed out, he won the Nevada Caucuses precisely because of the diversity of people to which he appealed: Latino, African-American, White, Native American, Asian American, gay, straight, religious & non-religious, young, old, male, female, those with and without college education, single, married, working class, middle class, and more. And when he makes a good showing in South Carolina – where Joe Biden is the projected winner with a significant African-American population – Bernie could topple Biden, but even if he won 2nd place, it would reinforce his status as Democratic front-runner.

Edward-Isaac Dovere, writer for The Atlantic, authored a brief article titled “The Democratic Establishment Is Broken” which was published February 22, 2020. Its banner read “After the Nevada caucus, Democratic Party leaders have never looked more uncertain about their future.” In it, he makes the point that, like Sanders and others have been saying – including Warren, Buttigieg, and other former candidates – which is that Sanders’ grassroots supporters acknowledge that so-called establishment Democrats -and- Republicans bear significant responsibility for the corrupting influence of money in which American public policy and law have caused, and because in turn, party bosses and others perceive their BIG MONEY funding sources could be jeopardized, has caused consternation among them. Yet ironically, by their very remarks, those same party bosses are making the very case about which the grassroots supporters are complaining.

Multi-billionaire Mike Bloomberg, entrepreneur and former New York City Mayor who left the GOP in 2007, and won a 3rd term as an Independent candidate, is campaigning as a new-comer Democrat, insofar as he decided to cast his hat in the ring very late in the game, long, long after most candidates’ ground game had been in effect. In fact, he affiliated with the Democratic party only recently, in October 2018, and launched his candidacy November 24. Bloomberg, whose net worth is an estimated $62 BILLION, has self-funded his candidacy, and according to records from the Federal Election Commission, has spent well in excess of $350 million, and counting in advertisements. That accounts for 0.564516129032258% (about 1/2 of 1%) of his vast fortune. And then, there’s the costs of his campaign team members, most whom are reportedly paid very handsomely in comparison to standard accepted rates for such work – at least twice, or more – and given iPhones and iPads to keep for themselves after their work for him is done.

That, of course, is not begrudging well-paid people, nor his largess. But it does cast a somber and sobering pall over the very matter, of the system now in effect, when to numerous causal observers it appears, for all practical purposes, as if he’s attempting to buy the nomination. And it certainly raises questions about his motives, or of others who may have encouraged him. Altogether, “the optics” as some say, don’t look good.

And then, there’s the other matter in which party members are clawing at other party members. Hillary herself, ever a lightning rod for criticism, whether warranted, or not, has had her hand in that pie as well, having earlier obliquely criticized Hawaii Representative Tulsi Gabbard CD-2, who she claimed on Democratic strategist David Plouffe’s podcast “Campaign HQ with David Plouffe” some months ago (Plouffe was Barack Obama’s campaign manager in 2008, and later a senior adviser to him), was being groomed as a third party spoiler candidate, and went so far as to call her a “Russian asset” and “the favorite of the Russians.” She further claimed without evidence that they’ve “got their eye on somebody who’s currently in the Democratic primary and are grooming her to be the third-party candidate.”

Clinton’s remarks in context were:
“They’re also going to do third party. I’m not making any predictions, but I think they’ve got their eye on somebody who’s currently in the Democratic primary and are grooming her to be the third-party candidate. She’s the favorite of the Russians, they have a bunch of sites and bots and other ways of supporting her so far, and that’s assuming Jill Stein will give it up, which she might not, because she’s also a Russian asset. Yeah, she’s a Russian asset, I mean totally. They know they can’t win without a third party candidate.”

Some media outlets attempted to put a happy face spin on what Clinton said by publishing what Clinton spokesperson Nick Merrill Tweeted in response that “HRC speculated that the only way the GOP is going to win in states where Trump can’t hit a 50% majority is to 1) Suppress the vote, as they do widely and routinely, & 2) Bank on the 3rd party spoiler.”

But Tulsi Gabbard, who is an officer in the Hawaii National Guard, in addition to being an elected Congressional Representative, is still a candidate for the Democratic nomination, and has plainly stated that she has no plans to seek a 5th term following her Presidential candidacy, and conclusion of her term in office. In 2016, she was a surrogate for Sanders’ Presidential campaign, and also identified the corrupted state of affairs within the Democratic party by Tweeting that, “I am calling out my own party and I am calling out what I have seen as a corrupted influence in our party that’s taken it away from the party of the people that it needs to be.”

“I’m not going to run as a third party candidate. I’m running for the Democratic nomination to lead the Democratic Party and take it back from those who have been advocating for waging more regime change wars and serving interests other than the interests of the people.”

In response to Clinton’s remarks, Gabbard wrote 3 Tweets which said, “Great! Thank you @HillaryClinton. You, the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption, and personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party for so long, have finally come out from behind the curtain. From the day I announced my candidacy, there has been a concerted campaign to destroy my reputation. We wondered who was behind it and why. Now we know — it was always you, through your proxies and powerful allies in the corporate media and war machine, afraid of the threat I pose. It’s now clear that this primary is between you and me. Don’t cowardly hide behind your proxies. Join the race directly.”

She reconfirmed on CBSN that she “will not be leaving the Democratic Party. I will not be running as an independent or a third-party candidate.”

So, Gabbard is by no means the solitary Democrat concerned with the party’s direction away from and obvious disaffection from the people they purport to care about, and toward big money and corporate favoritism.

After Bernie won the Nevada Caucus, Bloomberg’s campaign manager spoke out.

“If we choose a candidate who appeals to a small base – like Senator Sanders – it will be a fatal error. The Nevada results reinforce the reality that this fragmented field is putting Bernie Sanders on pace to amass an insurmountable delegate lead. This is a candidate who just declared war on the so-called ‘Democratic establishment.’ We are going to need Independents AND Republicans to defeat Trump — attacking your own party is no way to get started.”

– Kevin Sheekey, Mike Bloomberg’s Campaign Manager, remarks to press after Nevada Caucus Saturday night

Naysayers said Bernie wouldn’t be able to win black and brown voters, but his Nevada supporters were racially and ethnically diverse, and he won 27% of African Americans and 53% of Hispanics statewide.

Some said Bernie Sanders’ support was limited to crazy college kids who never heard the word ‘socialist’ being used as being a slur – yet there were many older Sanders supporters at the Bellagio resort and casino who chanted “Bernie!” right alongside their 20-something friends.

In fact, Senator Sanders won every age category in Nevada except those over 65, which Joe Biden won.

After Senator Sanders’ win in the Nevada Caucus, some of his campaign volunteers also spoke out.

“I didn’t think it was going to happen, that we were going to have this kind of lead. It proves to me that the last election wasn’t in vain. It was just the beginning. Now we’re seeing how it’s going to turn out and people are going to pay attention now. Bernie has woken up so many minds and that gives me hope especially for the future.”

– Valeria Romano, a pregnant 32 year-old mother of two, works at retail art supply store, and at a second selling her screen printing, Sanders campaign volunteer who helped increase Latino voter support and turnout in Nevada

After it was apparent Senator Sanders would win the Nevada Caucuses, he flew to San Antonio and addressed his supporters there following his victory by saying:

“Don’t tell anybody… I don’t want to get ’em nervous. We’re gonna’ win the Democratic Primary in Texas! And you know… this is also important – the President gets very, very upset easily, so don’t tell him – that we’re gonna’ beat ‘im here in Texas!

“And now, I’m delighted to bring you some pretty good news. All of you know we won the popular vote in Iowa, we won the New Hampshire Primary, and according to three networks and the AP, we have now won the Nevada Caucus!

Let me thank the people of Nevada for their support. In Nevada, we have just put together a multi-generational, multi-racial coalition which is not only gonna’ win in Nevada, it’s gonna’ sweep this country. And in Nevada, and in New Hampshire, and in Iowa, what we showed is that our volunteers are prepared to knock on hundreds, and hundreds of thousands of doors, that no campaign has a grassroots movement like we do – which is another reason why we’re gonna’ win this election.

“In Nevada, I want to thank our rank and file union members. I wanna’ thank ‘Make the Road,’ and all of the grassroots organizations that helped us win there.

“We are going to win here in Texas… we are going to win across the country, because the American people are sick and tired of a President who lies all of the time. They are sick and tired of a corrupt administration. They are sick and tired of a President who is undermining American democracy, who thinks he is above the law, and who apparently has never read the Constitution in this country. The American people are sick and tired of a government which is based on greed, corruption, and lies. They want an administration which is based on the principles of justice – economic justice, social justice, racial justice, and environmental justice.

“Now Trump and his friends think they are gonna’ win this election. They think they’re gonna’ win this election by dividing our people up, based on the color of their skin, or where they were born, or their religion, or their sexual orientation. We are gonna’ win because we are doing exactly the opposite – we’re bringing our people together!

“We are bringing our people together – black and white and Latino, Native American, Asian American! Gay and straight! We are bringing our people together around an agenda that works for the working people of this country, not the 1%!

“All over this country, workers are sick and tired of earning starvation wages. You can’t make it on 9 bucks an hour, or 11 bucks an hour, or 12 bucks an hour. We’re gonna’ raise the Federal Minimum Wage to 15 bucks an hour! We’re gonna’ provide equal pay for equal work for women! We are gonna’ make it easier for workers to join unions! We’re going to create millions of good-paying union jobs by rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure, and building the 10 million units of low-income, affordable housing this country desperately needs.

“We’re gonna’ win this election because we believe in education! We are going to have high-quality affordable universal child care! We are going to triple funding for low-income, Title I schools! And we need great teachers in this country! We need more Latino teachers! We need more African-American teachers! And because we know the vitally important work teachers do, we’re gonna’ fight to make sure no teacher in America earns less than $60,000 a year! And because we believe in education, we believe that all of our people – regardless of their income – are entitled to a higher education. And that is why we’re gonna’ make public colleges and universities tuition-free. And we’re gonna’ cancel all student debt in this country by imposing a modest tax on Wall Street speculation. Twelve years ago we bailed out the crooks on Wall Street, now it is their turn to help the working families in this country.

“And together, we are going to end the international embarrassment of the United States of America – our great country – being the only major country on Earth not to guarantee healthcare to all people. So let me as clear as I can be: Healthcare is a human right, not a privilege.

“We’re gonna’ end the absurd situation in which we now are spending twice as much per person on healthcare as the people of any other country, yet 87 million of us are uninsured, or under-insured, 30 thousand die each year, and 500,000 people go bankrupt because of medically-related debt. In America, you should not go bankrupt because you’re struggling with cancer! The function of a rational, and humane healthcare system is to guarantee healthcare to all, not make $100 billion in profits for the drug companies and the insurance companies. And we are gonna’ take on the greed and corruption of the pharmaceutical industry. Under our administration, the American people will not pay – in some cases – 10 times more for the same prescription drugs sold in Mexico, Canada, or Europe.

“And when we talk about the major crises facing this country, it is a sad state of affairs when we have a President of the United States who believes that Climate Change is a hoax, while the Scientific Community has a slight disagreement with Mr. Trump. They think that Climate Change is an existential threat to this planet. And our administration believes in Science, not right-wing extremism. And that is why, together, we are going to adopt the principles of the Green New Deal, which creates up to 20 million good-paying jobs as we transform our energy system away from fossil fuel, to energy efficiency and sustainable energy! Brothers and sisters, this is a moral issue. We must make sure that the planet we leave our children and grandchildren is a planet and habitable.

“And when we talk about issues that must be dealt with, we – in fact – are gonna’ reform a broken and racist criminal justice system. We do not want to continue a situation where we have more people in jail than any other country, including China – 4 times our size. And the people in jail are disproportionately African-American, Latino, and Native American. And that is why we are going to invest in our young people in jobs, in education – not more jails and incarceration. That is why we are going to end Private Prisons and Detention Centers. That is why we are gonna’ end the War on Drugs and legalize marijuana in every state in this country.

“Let me ask you all a question. Let me ask a serious question. How many people in this room tonight know somebody who was arrested for possession of marijuana? We are gonna’ move forward to expunge the records of those arrested for possession of marijuana.

“And when we talk about broken and racist systems, we’re gonna’ bring about fundamental reform to our immigration system. I am the son of an immigrant. My father came to this country from Poland without a nickle in his pocket, couldn’t speak a word of English, had very little education. I know something about the immigrant experience. Together, we are going to end the demonization of the undocumented in this country.

“On our First Day in office, through Executive Order, we rescind all of Trump’s racist immigration Executive Orders.

“On our First Day in office, through Executive Order, we restore the legal status of the 1.8 million young people – and their parents – eligible for DACA.

“On our First Day in office, we end a border policy which today allows Federal Agents to grab babies from the arms of their mothers… and throw children into cages! That is not what America is about! And together, we will do what the American have wanted to do for years – and that is pass comprehensive immigration reform, and a path on citizenship.

“Earlier today, Jane and I were in El Paso at the memorial at that terrible shooting… terrible shooting in El Paso – at the Wal-Mart store there. And this is my promise to you: Our gun safety legislation – which the American people want, because they are disgusted by the amount of gun violence and mass killings in this country – our gun safety legislation will be written by the American people, not the NRA. We will have universal background checks. We will end the Gunshow Loophole. And we will do what the American people want, and that is end the sale and distribution of assault weapons in this country.

“You know, I am a United States Senator, and I am on the floor of the Senate very often listening to speeches from Republican conservatives. And as you know, their mantra – what they talk about all the time – is that they believe in small government, they believe in getting government off the backs of the American people. And what I say tonight to those hypocrites… if you believe in getting the government off the backs of the American people, understand, that it is women that have a right to control their own bodies – not the government.

“And my promise to you, is that I will never nominate anybody to the Supreme Court, or the Federal bench, is not 100% pro-Roe v Wade. We will codify Roe v Wade – put it into law – ad we will significantly expand funding for Planned Parenthood.

“As a United States Senator, I do understand the power of the corporate elite, and the 1%. They have literally, unlimited amounts of money, they have significant control over the media, over our economy, and over the political life of this country. But at the end of the day, the 1% is 1%. Now, I don’t have a PhD in mathematics, but I do know that 99% is a heck of lot bigger number than 1%.

“So what this campaign is about, is understanding that if we do not allow Trump to divide us up by the color of our skin, or where we were born, or our religion, or our sexual orientation – if we STAND TOGETHER! – if we fight for an agenda that works for working families and the Middle Class, if we get involved in the political process, if we stand for justice, if we stand for compassion, if we understand that we are all in this together, that my family has to care about your family, your family cares about my family – Brothers and Sisters, if we stand together, not only will we defeat Trump, we will transform this country and create a government and an economy that works for all of us, not wealthy campaign contributors!

“Thank you all very much!”

– Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders to a cheering crowd in a rally San Antonio, Texas, after his Nevada Caucus win

 

One Response to “For The People -or- For The Billionaires?”

  1. […] his Nevada victory, Bernie said in part that, “we have just put together a multi-generational, multi-racial coalition which is not only […]

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