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How Sanders Supporters can Up Their Game (or, Why Sanders Lost NY)

metamars's picture

(cross posted at the reddit group SandersForPresident)


This is what democracy looks like, when you get high school kids riled up. Link to story.

I was thinking how Sanders could have possibly lost to Clinton in NY, this late in the game, when there have been lots of opportunities to educate the public about how different Sanders is from Clinton.

My take on what sorts of memes need to be pushed - i.e., what the education of the public should look like - comes from three areas. The first is something my mother told me, viz., that she would never vote for Clinton. When I asked her why, she was quite clear - she's been reading Roger Stone's book "The Clinton's War on Women", and has lost any conviction she may have had that Clinton has the moral wherewithal to be President.

Secondly, I saw a "focus group" after the last Sanders/Clinton debate, and one Hillary supporter insisted that Clinton was well-versed on the issues - in fact, the best informed. (Suggesting, to me, that this lady had internalized the image that the Clinton campaign wanted her to internalize, but that she actually had little idea of the downside of Clinton - what a lousy Secretary of State she had been, e.g.)

Thirdly, I recently viewed Abby Martin's new video, Empire Files: Abby Martin Exposes What Hillary Clinton Really Represents (see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PV_PLCC6jeI). It was when I was musing over how NY voters could pick Clinton, the subject of Martin's video, over Sanders, that the thought jelled in my mind: NY Voters, in the main, had little knowledge of what is in Martin's video. (And, presumably, of what is in Stone's book, which I haven't read.)

SO, WHY IS THIS THE CASE?

Well, on the one hand, I think Sanders is somewhat trapped by the fact of he caucuses with Democrats, is running as a Democrat, and probably has lots of friends that are Democrats. Plus, he's apparently so principled that he not only doesn't take the low road, but (I'll guess) doesn't want to even appear to take the low road. A lot of Hillary's dark side is fuzzy - we have to be inferential, judge her partly on the company she has kept, etc. A gentleman like Sanders probably doesn't even want to infer likely criminality, for charges against her that are less than "slam dunks".

IN A NUTSHELL, I DON'T THINK SANDERS CAN TAKE ON THE "DARK" HILLARY CLINTON, FROM A PSYCHOLOGICAL POINT OF VIEW. (Furthermore, it's questionable that he'd even be well advised to do so. He might end up getting a demoted presence in main stream media, which supports the same plutocracy that Clinton seeks to serve, as President.)

SO, THAT LEAVES THE CONSIDERABLY LARGER GROUP OF SANDERS' SUPPORTERS.

=============================================================

Should Sanders supporters decide to boldy go forth where Sanders, himself, cannot or will not, how should they proceed? I BELIEVE AN AMAZINGLY UNTAPPED VECTOR FOR NON-MAINSTREAM MEME PROPAGATION ARE PUBLIC SCHOOLS - IN PARTICULAR, HIGH SCHOOLS. THE IDEA IS PARTLY THAT RILED UP HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS WILL SHARE THEIR KNOWLEDGE AN PASSION WITH OLDER MEMBERS OF THEIR HOUSEHOLDS, THAT CAN VOTE.

I'll wrap this up by quoting myself from a recent email to a Bernie supporter ("Voter's Revenge" is a new web based tool that I've been working on. See votersrevenge.info for more info on that):

unexploited education route
===========================

I've just started calling Voter's Revenge an "opionated" tool. That's because the main sort of "wrangler" punitive pledge that I'm going to try to funnel users towards is the the fliering one, that targets schools. I grew up in a suburb, where it's sort of obvious that 'high density meme targeting' opportunities are uncommon, but definitely exist.

I CHALLENGE YOU to take a look around at a local public school, either at opening or closing time. I can almost GUARANTEE you that nobody will be fliering there (on public sidewalks, where it's perfectly legal, though some municipalities might require a permit, which will cost around $30, based on what I've found out here in New Jersey.) In West Orange, where I live, the police department told me that for non-profits, there is no permit required.

Your mission, {name redacted}, should you decide to accept it, is to get Bernie enthusiasts to inject memes into American households, bypassing mainstream (and alternative) media filters, via school fliering. Bernie rallies are exciting, and all, but I'm afraid they can obscure the huge opportunities which ubiquitous computers and personal printers have placed in our hands, but go unexploited.

Indeed, if you could get Bernie to REQUIRE an (informal) fliering pledge (as the cost of admission) to future Bernie rallies, that alone might push the "revolution" he talks about over the tripping point. He wouldn't need a "Vote's Revenge" to accomplish this, even though it'd be a nice to have.

In about 27 states, we now have legalized imprisonment for debts (according to Gary Null of prn.fm). Students will often have parents cosign educational loans, which means we will eventually see both parents and their children doing time in the pokey for gambling on a secondary education. MY fliers, when I get around to making them, will focus on this fact, and point the way towards the candidate who favors truly affordable education.

If you want to see "what democracy looks like", when it gets into the hearts and minds of school kids, take a look at this:

http://www.boston.com/news/education/2016/03/11/how-a-group-of-boston-te...

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Comments

metamars's picture
Submitted by metamars on

Wouldn't there be restrictions on what sort of flyers could be passed out? I just had a long chat with a NJ Bernie supporter, and she told me that she was surprised to learn that setting up tables with political literature is commonly suppressed on college campuses. She came of age in the 60's, and tabling and perfectly free political speech on college campuses was the norm. I've also noticed that some public library bulletin boards are explicit about not being willing to post anything "controversial".

The sort of flyers I'm envisioning personally handing out, to be handed out to high school students and their parents near school grounds, are part issue-related (student debt + debtor's prisons* + anti-TPP) and partly pro-Bernie. "Pro-Bernie" is a tactical decision, as Trump is also credibly anti-TPP. The simple fact is that Bernie inspires young people, much more than Trump. If you want to spark a fire in a Bernie forest, I figure it's better to use Bernie matches.

Well, they'll probably also favor Trump, but if his supporters want to pass out fliers which gives him top billing over Sanders, they'll have to pay for them, themselves.

Can "community service requirements" be satisfied by fliers that favor a Democratic Party candidate??

As it is, the dynamic I'd like to see is kids replicating the fliering, who (I hope) are too young to have incurred community service obligations. Also, their parents.

* From memory, Gary Null has mentioned debtor's prisons existing in abou 27 states. From this cnn article, which I've only glanced at, seems to suggest it's more a city-specific problem.:

A Supreme Court ruling in 1983 prohibited putting people in prison for failure to pay their fines and fees without an indigency hearing. And yet at least 15 states have found ways to ignore this mandate. They have made this a standard practice.

The "indigency" hearing is also creepy sounding, as it suggests a wide open door for jailing working poor people, who haven't quite fallen to "indigent" status...

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

Roger Stone is a well-known Republican Ratfucker

Here is a wiki on the term "Ratfucker", just in case you don't know.

Y'know, Correntewire used to stand for something. We didn't link to RW sites, and we didn't adopt right-wing rat-fucking tropes. Could you please respect your posting privileges and moon-walk this back? We got it, you hate Clinton. I've got some issues with her myself, but we don't need this kind of "argumentation". Never did. You should probably be asking yourself, "Why should I believe a Republican political operative?" The answer is, you shouldn't.

Jay's picture
Submitted by Jay on

You should probably be asking yourself, "Why should I believe a Republican political operative?"

That's a good point, and precisely why Hillary and her surrogates are so widely hated across the American electorate.

metamars's picture
Submitted by metamars on

Your link "Roger Stone is a well-known #$%^#$^" contains the sentence,

I'll say it again: I like Bernie Sanders, but his supporters are human vomit.

Would you please inform readers of this blog post and commentary, whether or not, if it's true that Bill Clinton is a rapist, and Hillary tried to suppress her (as alleged by Juanita Broderick, ref), that you would then consider both Bill and Hillary Clinton "human vomit"?

Inquiring minds would like to know (where you're coming from).

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

"If"?

I got a better "if" for you:

"If" a person used completely unsubstantiated allegations of rape and cover-ups, and forced you to assume they were true in order to gauge your bona fide as a properly-thinking human being, would that person be accurately portrayed as "human vomit"?

Just speaking hypothetically here, of course, because providing a person a completely false choice like asking "So when did you stop fucking goats?" would be an unfair rhetorical device beneath the dignity of Correntewire

Or at least, beneath the dignity of the Correntewire I once knew.

Oh, and you can say "fuck" here. It's OK.

metamars's picture
Submitted by metamars on

I'm sure you didn't miss the point, any more than you could have answered the question without accepting the premise. Some people think of the Clintons with the same contempt as your "reference" regards Bernie Sanders' supporters . And frankly, I'd say that they have a lot more justification for doing so. Here's an interview with an example of what your sHillary-loving reference calls "human vomit"; it's a Rosario Dawson interview by Amy Goodman, of democracynow.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHkqQNAP4B8

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

Roger Stone is a ratfucking Republican and you quoted him. He is a major premise of your post.

End of story.

You are the one ducking. You got it pointed out and are coming up with red herrings.

Rosario Dawson doesn't quote Roger Stone, at least for the two minutes I listened.

Challenge Hillary Clinton from the Left? Fuck ya. Engage in the "Shillary" or "Shillary" nonsense? Fuck no.

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

Sanders lost because he is a terrible, shitty candidate for the Democratic party and fewer people voted for him than Clinton. It's pretty simple.

Most people understood that the media that loved Grumpy McFingerwager now was going to chew him up like a Rottweiler does an old cow bone. Trump would beat him like the proverbial gong. It would be a laugher. The kind of old-fashioned hiding that Republicans would laugh over for decades to come.

That is why Sanders lost New York. It's because he is a pathetically weak candidate.

Sorry if that sounds harsh.

metamars's picture
Submitted by metamars on

Sanders lost because he is a terrible, shitty candidate for the Democratic party and fewer people voted for him than Clinton. It's pretty simple.

Wow, what a stunningly insightful commentary. Have you considered a career as a political pundit?

Sanders has done amazingly well, though he's not particularly good looking, and in spite of his coming across as somewhat of a curmudgeon.

One of my many continuing gripes about the dysfunctional political culture in America is the lack of depth of information on a whole slew of topics. Lacking serious investigation, and non-superficial polling, it's relatively easy to espouse any number of mythologies.

E.g., we know that Clinton did very well with blacks in southern states. How much did the blacks who voted for her really know about her positions and background? (Not their opinions of her; I mean, what did they actually KNOW about her?) How much did they actually KNOW about Bernie's positions and background? Why did Clinton do better with black voters in the South, as opposed to black voters in the North?

Somehow, I don't think these sorts of 'details' concern you. Your self-evident analytical political brilliance has seen right through to the most compelling explanation.

Another concerning aspect of American political culture is the lack of democratic experimentation. The creativity associated with the Sanders tecchie fan boys and girls is impressive (I'm not aware of ANYTHING even CLOSE to bernkit.com in other campaign websites; please correct me if I'm wrong), but even there his supporters have room for improvement.

Something I intend to be helping them out with, shortly (though my technology project is Bernie friendly, not Bernie specific).

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

I may not be perfect, but I don't use Roger Stone or other creatures of the Right Wing conspiracy complex, paid for by Koch brothers, Richard Mellon Scaife or Rupert Murdoch billions when making my arguments.

Your own mileage obviously varies.

As for what those voters "KNOW", well here we go again, here comes the " low-informatiom voters" trope. That one just never gets old, does it?

"An entire class/race of people didn't vote the way I wanted because they aren't as wise/educated/worldly/sophisticated/connected/savvy/smart as me and all my Facebook and Instagram friends! Waah!".

If only all those minorities and poor folk would listen when we whiteman-splain. After all, Bernie knows what is best for them. :rolleyes:.

metamars's picture
Submitted by metamars on

You ducked, again!

You don't actually care to understand why Bernie did better with northern blacks than southern blacks, nor why Clinton did so much better than Bernie with southern blacks, do you? You can't help yourself from smearing, as a defensive measure to ward off probing along these lines, can you?

Heck, I don't even get the age thing. Why, oh why - other than familiarity - is Bernie so popular with young people, compared to Clinton, but not so much when it comes to older people? I doubt that it's either wisdom, or senility. If I was a smear merchant, such as yourself, I would probably just blurt out the self-validating claim of "wisdom", with not a scintilla of evidence.

I don't think "wisdom" is quantifiable, but knowledge about the candidates on particular issues, and knowledge of their record, is quantifiable.

It's likely that the crushing weight of student debt plays a factor, but I find it hard to believe that that could constitute most of the explanation.

A lot of voting behavior appears to related to deep-seated differences in other cognitive areas, which can't be rationally explained. A certain fraction of the population will vote largely irrationally, and I don't think anybody can escape their irrational side, completely.

So, I guess to be more accurate, I would like to know how people would have voted differently, if they were more knowledgeable about both Clinton and Sanders, and what the upper bound percentage of the public this would be.

It's easy to find youtube videos of supporters of politicians, who know almost nothing about those politician's views. E.g., here's some clueless Clinton supporters STUPID HILLARY SUPPORTERS STRUGGLE TO NAME HER ACHIEVEMENTS

Ah, but that's anectdotal evidence. Where is the statistical evidence?

If the Sanders campaign has statistical evidence that shows that Hillary's support has no rational basis in her record, then they've done a really poor job of dealing with that ignorance.

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

Once again. I'm not "ducking", I'm refusing to accept your faulty premise.!

You are making the assumption that voters that didn't vote for Sanders "lack knowledge". On the other hand, I'm assuming that they know enough to make the choice they feel is the best one for them. Even if they lacked the info you feel is important, someone else could say the same thing about Sanders voters, they lacked information that would lead them to think him a bad choice. Like the fact the Republicans were dying for the chance to run ads of Bernie Sanders pointing and yelling in front of a giant, waving, red, hammer and sickle flag backdrop. "This man went to the Communist Soviet Union for his honeymoon". That kind of nonsense.

See how that works?

I'm sorry for you that he was a crap candidate. I would have liked a better candidate far to the left of Clinton (especially on the Empire). Sanders wasn't that candidate. But not buying into the politician as savior concept, it is easy for me to not become emotionally involved. It's a rookie move.

metamars's picture
Submitted by metamars on

Like I said - you ducked, again. Clearly, obtaining knowledge about rational voting behavior (as well as irrational voting behavior) is something that interests me, but you evade even agreeing on the desirability of obtaining such knowledge.

After all, you have your insulting narrative - Bernie is a crap candidate (even though he's blown past the confines of mainstream punditry expectations) and his supporters are "human vomit" who "know enough" to make the best choice they "feel" is the best one for them. And you're sticking to that narrative, resisting all attempts to show how absurd it is.

I am interested in finding out the truth of the matter (of voter behavior as a function of verifiable and verified voter knowledge), while you want to paint a picture of adequate voter knowledge (with respect to their "feel"ings, anway).

Your fear of finding out the truth is rather transparent. Since a logical possibility of the sort of research that I am calling for is to support Clinton as majoritarian choice of knowledgeable voters, if you had the sort of confidence in your narrative that you pretend to have, you would have EMBRACED my suggestion.

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

Did I say "human vomit"? No. So you can stop with that obfuscation any time now. And my reference was "they KNOW enough to vote for the person they feel is best", so you are taking my comment out of context, since I could have said ", "consider" or "chose" or "reflect".

What the fuck do you know or how do you assume what "verifiable" or "verified" votor knowledge is? My point is that is a well-known white-liberal dogwhistle that is very familiar to "The Class of 2008", when the "Creative Class" used it against poor rural white voters. Now it is poor rural black voters that get their intelligence and knowledge questioned.

Proving once again that it really is about both class and race.

But back to the point, are you saying Sanders was NOT a shitty candidate? I mean, he lost to "That Evil Woman", the Anti-Beast, a horrible person (according to folks like you) whonwears pantsuits and is fat and short and old and ugly and a woman and has cankles. She stands for all that is crass and awful and cynical in the world. She cackles. She opposed Obama. She has among the highest unapproval ratings of any currently living politician. She is a terrible campaigner. She is married to an accused serial woman abuser (as you allege). She may have killed Vince Foster. She voted for the Iraq War and engineered the Surge and the Syria and Libya debacles and is in favor of Obama's free trade agreements (supposedly), AND FUCKING STILL BERNIE SANDERS LOST EVEN AMONG DEMOCRATS!!!!!

I mean, could there be any more evidence how bad he sucked?

Jay's picture
Submitted by Jay on

That's the reason Hillary is going to lose, right there. Hillary's campaign has burned its bridges with the left, and continually insults the Bernie voters she'd need to win. Her instinct is to always pivot to the right, and Trump is going to exploit that. We'll see who gets beaten like a gong. Come October the Clintonistas will be falling all over themselves to vaguely promise all sorts of shit to the left but it will come after months of campaigning to woo GOP voters and will fall on deaf ears. Just you watch.

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

I have no doubt at all that Clinton will lose the man-bun vote, and that anything progressive or left-leaning she ever says will fall on deaf ears to a certain segment of purists.

That has been true since before 2008, so why won't it be true now?

She ran to the left of Obama ("The One") at that time, but you wouldn't have known it then and you won't know it now from basically the same cast of characters who still suffer from Clinton Derangement Syndrome.

Jay's picture
Submitted by Jay on

See? There you go again. You just can't help yourselves. "The man-bun vote." "Left-leaning" (but never left!). "Purists." Equating the democratic wing of the Democratic Party with Kenneth Starr by invoking "Clinton Derangement Syndrome." Even MoveOn.org endorsed Bernie. Insult after insult after insult after insult. That's not how you get votes. You can't Sister Souljah everyone under the age of 30 and leftists and win the general.

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

Are you saying those people and those attitudes don't exist? Because I can easily prove it. Heck, this very post uses a Right-Wing political operative as a reference.

If those descriptions don't apply to you, then don't worry about it.

Oh, and The Hell with Hillary Rodham Clinton I wrote that long ago.

And yet, I will vote for her over Trump. Know why? Because I don't believe in the "politician as savior" concept. I'm not a purist. She will, on nearly every issue, be better than Trump.

Jay's picture
Submitted by Jay on

That's the problem! Hillary is a Right Wing Political Operative!

TTP/TTIP? BAM!
Big Pharma Insurance ObamneyCare Hack? BAM!
Military Industrial Complex Campaign Donation Recipient? BAM!
School Privatization to Prison Industrial Complex Pipeline Proponent? BAM!
$10/hr minimum wage pre-defeatist negotiator versus $15/hr? BAM!
Social Security liquidator? BAM!
Bank deregulator with revolving-door nominees for Treasury, SEC, CFTC, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency? BAM!

BAM! BAM! BAM! Who needs Bob Dole when you have Hillary Clinton? When you run a Republican against a Republican, the Republican always wins. Time to end your desperate love affair with Hillary Clinton.

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

Oh please.

Desperate love affair? Where in the actual fuck would you get that idea when I just showed you what I posted about her years ago?

When people talk about Clinton Derangement Syndrome, that is exactly what we refer to. Nothing short of rabid hatred of all things Clinton are allowed.

Clinton is a poor candidate. Sanders is worse. Trump is worse than either. See how easy that is?

Jay's picture
Submitted by Jay on

Desperate love affair? Where in the actual fuck would you get that idea when I just showed you what I posted about her years ago?

From the signoff/signature line at the end of all of your comments.

I'm sorry, which presidential candidate are you supporting in November?

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

I am viciously opposed to the one who wants to deport Muslim citizens and wants to "build a wall and make the Mexicans pay for it". Therefore, I will vote for whomever is the major party candidate is running against him. Reality regrets to inform Sanders voters, that won't be Sanders.

I'm glad, but not because I have an issue with his policies or him personally. I'm glad because he would have lost badly and set back "my" side another decade.

metamars's picture
Submitted by metamars on

She will, on nearly every issue, be better than Trump

International affairs in conflict zones won't be one of them. Not exactly a plus for a former Secretary of State, ya know?

In a recent debate, she still defended the idea of a no-fly zone in Syria. The Russians are legally in Syria, having been invited by the legitimate Syrian government. The US is not. There will be no UNSC resolution authorizing a no-fly zone, as the West stuck it to Russia and China with the Libyan no-fly zone.

And with such wonderful results! Hillary "we came, we saw, he died" Clinton must be so proud!

Thus, if we take Clinton at her word, she's a dangerous nut-case, who shows contempt for international law, and worse, is quite willing to risk war with Russia. And, over what principle? To preserve what power remains in the hands of the head-chopping, terrorism-loving proxies of that most wonderful "ally" of ours, Saudi Arabia, within Syria?

I tend to doubt that Clinton is really that crazy, and is instead trying to maintain an image of "tough as any man". Unfortunately, I think she could be that crazy, and thus is inferior to both Sanders and Trump in this area.

THIS IS NO MINOR MATTER. THE WOMAN IS DANGEROUS.

In spite of my being a Bernie fan, I fault him for letting Clinton off too easily with her record. He "questions" her judgement, does he? Overall, Sanders has proven to be an excellent candidate, but clearly he has flaws.

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

We all have our deal breakers.

Wanting to deport all Muslims even citizens, and barring all entry of all brown people into the US as Trump wants are just two of mine.

Playing footsie with the Ku Klux Klan is another, but hey, wevs.