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Sat Mar 19, 2016, 01:22 PM

Old Man Looking

“Old man, look at my life
I’m a lot like you were.”
-- Neil Young


I attempt -- at least once a day -- to look objectively at the Democratic primary process, and evaluate how it will impact the Democratic National Convention …..which will then impact the presidential election in November. This morning, on Face Book, I saw a picture from the 1968 DNC in Chicago, with the saying: “This is what happens when you refuse to listen to the People.” Moments later, I started reading DU:GDP. Yikes!

It’s often said that DU does not represent the Democratic Party. That’s not entirely true. Certainly, it does not represent the sum-total of our party. Nor is it the only thing that represents it. But it does represent a couple significant groups within the larger party. For example, the forum DU:GDP represents the thinking and values of both Bernie and Hillary supporters.

Last night, I was able to listen to an interesting conversation while driving home after picking up my older daughter from her school. Her high grades, along with my financial status, allow her to attend a private university for a fraction of what she’d be charged by the state university system. Also in the vehicle was my oldest son, a graduate from the state university system, who is under-employed in a local factory; he owes a lot on his college loans.

All four of my children support Bernie Sanders. (Three are currently in college full-time; two of these work part-time, to get by.) Both daughters are truly afraid that Donald Trump might be elected president. Of the “Sanders for President” club at the younger one’s school, she estimates that over 50% will vote in the general election, even if Hillary is the nominee.

At the older sister’s school, she said very few of the Bernie-supporting students will vote if Hillary is the party’s nominee. She finds this frustrating, and unacceptable. In part, she believes this is because some of the students are mere fad-participants; while others simply believe Hillary Clinton to be part of the corrupt system they reject. My daughter believes that a Trump presidency poses so many dangers, that it has to be prevented, even if it involves voting for the lesser of two evils.

Her brother pointed out that the biggest stumbling block that will prevent everyone joining in a “big tent” effort to stop Trump would be Hillary, if she were to win the nomination. I said that there were potential difficulties with Bernie as candidate, too -- the truth is that most of the establishment will oppose his being elected. For, regardless of if they are socially-liberal Democrats, or conservative republicans, the establishment allows places money as their number one voting priority.

The two of them discussed the strengths and weaknesses of Bernie and Hillary, without a single insult or attack upon either candidate, or each other. Neither attempted to score cheap debaters’ points. They stuck to facts, opinions, and values. It can be done!

But it doesn’t seem to be a common feature on DU:GDP. Rather, this forum is a microcosm of the larger society’s divisions, which are rapidly becoming more entrenched. Our “differences” with each other are surely at least as important a factor in discussions here, as our beliefs about each candidate. More, neither Bernie nor Hillary can fully repair the damage being done today. Every politician would like to be a popular, unifying figure, of course. But it is evident that there are many here who will not support the nominee, if it isn’t the candidate they currently support. That holds equally true on both sides.

Just as DU:GDP is representative of parts of the Democratic Party, the three people in my vehicle last night are, too. It does not appear that DU:GDP can serve as a vehicle for uniting people behind a common goal -- or set of goals -- at this time. But maybe both sides could reduce the tensions, by at least acknowledging the strengths and weaknesses of both of the candidates.

Peace,
H2O Man

47 replies, 2896 views

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Arrow 47 replies Author Time Post
Reply Old Man Looking (Original post)
H2O Man Mar 2016 OP
Downwinder Mar 2016 #1
H2O Man Mar 2016 #8
Downwinder Mar 2016 #25
blm Mar 2016 #2
H2O Man Mar 2016 #9
Triana Mar 2016 #3
H2O Man Mar 2016 #10
Dem2 Mar 2016 #4
djean111 Mar 2016 #7
H2O Man Mar 2016 #12
Dem2 Mar 2016 #16
djean111 Mar 2016 #21
Dem2 Mar 2016 #22
djean111 Mar 2016 #24
Dem2 Mar 2016 #33
djean111 Mar 2016 #34
Dem2 Mar 2016 #36
monicaangela Mar 2016 #26
djean111 Mar 2016 #35
monicaangela Mar 2016 #37
H2O Man Mar 2016 #11
Dem2 Mar 2016 #18
H2O Man Mar 2016 #19
Gregorian Mar 2016 #5
KoKo Mar 2016 #13
H2O Man Mar 2016 #14
Gregorian Mar 2016 #30
malthaussen Mar 2016 #45
monicaangela Mar 2016 #27
malthaussen Mar 2016 #46
Jenny_92808 Mar 2016 #6
H2O Man Mar 2016 #15
malthaussen Mar 2016 #47
LineReply .
NCTraveler Mar 2016 #17
H2O Man Mar 2016 #20
KoKo Mar 2016 #23
H2O Man Mar 2016 #28
noretreatnosurrender Mar 2016 #29
Blue_In_AK Mar 2016 #32
kgnu_fan Mar 2016 #31
H2O Man Mar 2016 #38
Scuba Mar 2016 #39
H2O Man Mar 2016 #40
coeur_de_lion Mar 2016 #41
H2O Man Mar 2016 #43
Zorra Mar 2016 #42
malthaussen Mar 2016 #44

Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 01:35 PM

1. It seems that there is a big generation gap

between those of us raised under the loyalty to the Company/Corporation meme and those raised under globalization. The indispensability of current workers is all too apparent.

Edit to add.

It is like the gap between those who went trough the depression and those who came after.

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Response to Downwinder (Reply #1)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:41 PM

8. Valid point.

Very important. Thank you.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #8)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:34 PM

25. It may come into play in loyalty

to the party or the candidate or the issues.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 01:39 PM

2. Completely agree.

Thanking the Waterman, yet again.

; )

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Response to blm (Reply #2)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:42 PM

9. Thanks!

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 01:52 PM

3. You must be so proud of your kids...

 

...and you should be! They sound like fabulous young adults. Well done Dad!

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Response to Triana (Reply #3)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:43 PM

10. Oh, thank you!

That's really nice! And yes, I'm mighty proud of them.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:02 PM

4. "...who will not support the nominee... That holds equally true on both sides."

According to a relatively large sample of DU-GDP - 100% of Hillary supporters would support Bernie, a VERY large percentage of Bernie supporters (perhaps half?) will not support Hillary:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1251&pid=1475599

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Response to Dem2 (Reply #4)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:25 PM

7. I honestly believe that a huge factor in that "100%" of Hillary's supporters is that they do not

 

think for a second that it will come to that. Also, there are, as I have led to understand, a lot more Bernie supporters. I have seen an 80-20 figure.

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Response to djean111 (Reply #7)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:46 PM

12. Right.

That's definitely one of the factors.

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Response to djean111 (Reply #7)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:57 PM

16. Yes, the poll shows 80/20 Bernie/Hillary

We won't count the few percent of us who would be happy with either candidate.

But I disagree, if Hillary voters say they will support Bernie, then they will. I know I will support either happily.

To assume otherwise is not logical and appears to be wishful thinking.

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Response to Dem2 (Reply #16)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:04 PM

21. Where do you get wishful thinking? From what I have read from Hillary's supporters,

 

they spend a lot of time informing us that "Hillary already won" - and saying that oh, yeah, they will vote for Bernie? Like me telling my grandson I will buy him a new car as soon as I win the lottery or find a big box of money or something equally not gonna happen. I can almost see the eye-rolls and the "as if".

Another factor - it seems to me that Hillary's supporters are just fine with war, fracking, lies galore, cluster bombs, increased H-1B visas, the trade agreements. I am hoping they are not actually huge fans of that stuff! But one reason I support Bernie is because he is against those things, and voting for someone who is for them - that would be like saying nothing really counts any more, no principles, nothing.

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Response to djean111 (Reply #21)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:09 PM

22. OK

This is how you "feel" about DU, I can't argue with your personal beliefs and emotional attachments to Bernie and his supporters.

As for me I like Bernie, but I will admit I do not always like Bernie supporters. Bernie supporters are so unlike Bernie.

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Response to Dem2 (Reply #22)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:14 PM

24. You do know that this is all about actual fucking issues, right?

 

Like I just tried to explain?

It is about the war and fracking and the lying and the TPP and the cluster bombs and the private prison, etc.

How the fuck is that merely "emotional attachment"? Or are you just being disingenuous. Never mind.

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Response to djean111 (Reply #24)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 05:27 PM

33. "this is all about actual fucking issues, right?"

That's exactly what the wing-nuts on reddit say too.

I'm not implying that you're a wing nut, just that people can be reasonable and find reasonable explanations for their candidate, and become serious, rigid and "nothing but the facts" when attacking their opponent. The word you used, disingenuous works though there's a better word to describe it that I can't think of right now. We'll just call it human nature.

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Response to Dem2 (Reply #33)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 05:30 PM

34. Bwahahahaha!

 

No, disingenuous is perfect - not totally honest or sincere. Like, say, Hillary.
Again, nothing about the issues, just attacking me.
'bye!

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Response to djean111 (Reply #34)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 05:32 PM

36. Just pointing out that you bring up other issues, move the goalposts

to any argument you see. But yeah, I'm the disingenuous nitwit.

Keep repeating that if it helps you sleep at night.

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Response to djean111 (Reply #21)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:39 PM

26. Thank you djean111

Why is it so hard to get people to understand that? I wonder...

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Response to monicaangela (Reply #26)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 05:31 PM

35. They understand, they just do not care, so they pretend to not understand. n/t

 

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Response to djean111 (Reply #35)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 06:12 PM

37. If that is the truth, then they really aren't thinking about the country as a whole

Just their own selfish interest.

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Response to Dem2 (Reply #4)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:45 PM

11. I'm aware of

that poll. Thanks for providing the link.

That poll, and numerous other posts etc, do not change anything, though. At very best, the poll may have reached a 50% accurate position.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #11)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:00 PM

18. I believe the poll

Even those who chose not to select an option are all Bernie supporters, thus the number of those who feel they can't support Hillary is even higher than the poll says, they are just afraid to say so as they feel they might be banned later on for doing so (and I witnessed at least 2 posters admit this.) I think you're reading this incorrectly.

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Response to Dem2 (Reply #18)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:01 PM

19. That's fine.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:03 PM

5. Some thoughts on this.

What is it that Noam Chomsky calls republicans? Radical insurgents?

Yesterday, I saw a few posts recommending Jack Pine Radicals forum. That is a forum where many progressive voices from DU have gone after being prevented from posting here. I began thinking that it would be nice to have productive discussion without being irritated by emotionally charged counter-posts. I imagined being a member. Then I imagined how we would all be getting along better than on DU. Then I asked myself if even there, we would be all aligned. Maybe politically, and maybe not. But let's say we began discussing music, or sports. Suddenly we would find ourselves in disagreement. I began asking whether we could find more disagreements, and if those could create a lack of harmony. I'm not sure where this is going. Is there a minimum amount of disagreement below which we all get along? Could we become divided more, over time? There is no doubt we could find disagreement.

Now here's what has been on my mind lately. Both parties have shifted to the right. This is the problem, as I see it. If I think of Noam's words, what I see is that republicans have gone off the charts. They have moved so far right as to be "crazy". And as I experience it, I see the two halves of the Democratic party in a new way. I see one part filling the vacancy left by the republicans, and the other filling what was once the core of the Democratic party. That explains much of my sentiment regarding how I perceive our present situation.

I'm still in a state of shock over this. It's a sad and empty feeling. I guess that's life. Unfortunately, one of my goals in life is to transcend the difficulties of this life. That takes effort and teamwork. It's like America needs political therapy, and we're still debating that there's a problem.

Thanks for posting your thoughts. It's always thought provoking.

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Response to Gregorian (Reply #5)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:52 PM

13. ...!

"Now here's what has been on my mind lately. Both parties have shifted to the right. This is the problem, as I see it. If I think of Noam's words, what I see is that republicans have gone off the charts. They have moved so far right as to be "crazy". And as I experience it, I see the two halves of the Democratic party in a new way. I see one part filling the vacancy left by the republicans, and the other filling what was once the core of the Democratic party. That explains much of my sentiment regarding how I perceive our present situation."

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Response to Gregorian (Reply #5)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:53 PM

14. Interesting.

One factor in politics et al is if one has respect for other people, including their right to their opinions, even if those opinions seem wrong to us? While that sounds like a low bar, it is clearly high enough to prevent much civil discourse here on DU. And, more and more frequently, we see tensions between groups in this country -- and around the world -- because many people are convinced that not only are they right, but that only their opinion is right. Real life has a pesky way of creating issues where there may not be a clear right or wrong; indeed, there are many issues that actually can't be reduced to those definitions.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #14)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 04:33 PM

30. That takes patience.

I can understand being tolerant. I have great difficulty when there are serious issues involving human suffering. But I suppose that boils down to decisions on which candidate will do what, in the mind of the supporter. Or maybe the decision is made for selfish reasons. I don't see that with Bernie supporters.

It's hard to be patient when one has the goal of health. Some things have a time value. It's even harder having waited nearly a half century, and an opportunity shows up.

I have friend who is a genius when it comes to getting people to see themselves. He even works with a Limbaugh devotee, and they've gotten along famously, with my friend patiently getting him to see glimpses of light. It's a gift I would love to have. I feel threatened by that kind of difference. And that's how I'm feeling on this forum lately. It's probably good for me, but I dearly hope this kind of thing hasn't created a permanent division. Now that I've said it, I think the difference in the two groups of supporters has been there the whole time. We've just come into a situation where it has become obvious.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #14)

Tue Mar 22, 2016, 12:12 PM

45. Reminds me of the 1840s and 50's, actually...

... in which one regularly saw arguments asserting that anyone who held an opinion different from one's own was either mendacious or uninformed. Not that this is a particularly uncommon argument, but we see it so much more often in times of serious polarization.

-- Mal

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Response to Gregorian (Reply #5)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:47 PM

27. Who would have thought

Both political parties wheels would go off the rails at the first time. I see it as the republican party as you say has gone from bad to worse, from awful to crazy. And it appears the DLC is salivating to take the position they held when they were just awful, while the other half of the democratic party is trying to maintain the sanity that helped unify the party after it changed from the Republican party to the democratic party. Like you say, a lot of us are in shock because we didn't believe the party would ever make that turn to the right again. So much for that, I believe we are seeing it now, and it's really ugly.

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Response to monicaangela (Reply #27)

Tue Mar 22, 2016, 12:19 PM

46. Oh, I should think that would have been inevitable.

Nature abhors a vacuum. As the GOP moved harder right, it began shedding supporters who had nowhere to go but the Democratic Party, given the way things are set up in the U.S. Inevitably, the carpet-baggers would try to seize control, and by simple manipulation of the fear factor they could achieve it.

-- Mal

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:17 PM

6. We need to puke out

 

the right-wingers from our Democratic Party!

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Response to Jenny_92808 (Reply #6)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 02:54 PM

15. True, that.

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Response to Jenny_92808 (Reply #6)

Tue Mar 22, 2016, 12:20 PM

47. But where will they go?

The GOP can make no pretense of representing the "Moral Majority" anymore, and there is no third party extant.

-- Mal

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:00 PM

17. .

 

Sander- he is getting a lot of young people involved and making many in the country more comfortable with many progressive/socialist concepts that the republicans have spent decades deionizing.

Clinton - one of the most recognizable people in the world and she is promoting progress in a progressive direction every day. She preaches equality worldwide.

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Response to NCTraveler (Reply #17)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:04 PM

20. Thank you.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:13 PM

23. Thanks for sharing this.

What a fine family you have. Always like to hear what they are up to.

Re: the GDP atmosphere. Sadly, Skinner's latest post where he announced he was removing the restrictions of "Time Outs" for 5 Hidden Posts, may have unleashed forces that will keep things boiling until the Convention. Using "Ignore Function" or clicking the "Trash Post/Thread" box may be the only option to have any civil political discussion going forward, around here. I hope he will rethink this.

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Response to KoKo (Reply #23)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 03:47 PM

28. Thanks, Buddy!

Much appreciated!

I agree with you. While I've never "ignored" anyone by way of that function, there are a few people that I never read.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #28)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 04:12 PM

29. Agree

I've never put anyone on ignore either but like you I choose not to read/participate in thread after thread where the only aim is to divide. At first I gave some of them the benefit of the doubt by reading and participating but over the course of the election it is clear what their game is all about. I only wish more people would refuse to be baited and let those threads die the death they deserve. I truly feel sorry for the people who create those threads and who only appear happy when they are sucker punching people in an online forum.

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Response to KoKo (Reply #23)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 04:53 PM

32. I went almost 12 years without ignoring anyone,

but after the amnesty, I found it necessary. When it gets to the point where I, a pacifist to my core, feel like punching someone, it's time to put them somewhere where I can't see them.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 04:33 PM

31. Voice of reason. Thank you... Young ppl are sometime wiser than old folks.....

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Response to kgnu_fan (Reply #31)

Sat Mar 19, 2016, 10:17 PM

38. Thanks!

I was a bit surprised when my youngest daughter went and got a tattoo this weekend. She took a hand-written note from my old buddy, Rubin "Hurricane" Carter, to her when she was little. Part of his message to her -- "Dare to Dream!" -- in a perfect copy of Rube's hand-writing, was what she picked out for a tattoo.

I thought you would find this interesting!

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sun Mar 20, 2016, 10:33 AM

39. You should be very proud of your children.

 

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Response to Scuba (Reply #39)

Sun Mar 20, 2016, 10:36 AM

40. Thanks.

I am very proud of my kids. And I'm mighty proud of their circles of friends. I wish that the entire Democratic Party was invested in listening to, and working with, the young adults who are involved in political activism.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Mon Mar 21, 2016, 12:03 PM

41. Really good post H

Sorry I missed it on Saturday.

I know you are proud of those kids -- you should be -- you're a wonderful father.

I can see both sides of the Hilary / Bernie argument. Whoever gets the nomination will get my vote.

We have bigger fish to fry than which of the two Democratic candidates is better.

I do wish we could have a President Bernie but it seems far away to me. Maybe we are not evolved enough for him yet.

Voted for him in the primary. Wish I could vote for him in the GE.

My personal opinion is that everyone thinks Trump will get the GOP nomination, and Hilary is a better opponent to Trump than Bernie is. I don't think that is necessarily true but that is what many people believe and it will get her the nomination.

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Response to coeur_de_lion (Reply #41)

Mon Mar 21, 2016, 03:21 PM

43. Thank you!

Speaking of postings from FaceBook -- did you see my daughter's tattoo?

And, speaking of Ireland -- obviously, this Sunday means something special to us -- but my normal brother asked me to accompany him on a visit to the Old Sod. He even offered to pay for the whole trip ..... 'spect it's good to have one capitalist in the family! If my health permitted, I'd have accepted his offer.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Mon Mar 21, 2016, 02:31 PM

42. K&R nt

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Tue Mar 22, 2016, 11:57 AM

44. I can't even keep up.

I try to reply to all your posts because I enjoy the virtual conversation, but you are so consistent in your posting I keep falling behind.

I've noted a couple of objections cropping up to Mr Sanders recently which I had not fully credited before. One is his recent "conversion" to the Democratic party, and the other is an assertion that he is really a demagogue selling a con. The two are easily linked of course. As to why he has decided to con us now, instead of any time in the past generation, charges of opportunism are laid (although why running against a previously-ordained and largely acceptable candidate would be considered an "opportunity" is something I haven't quite worked out, yet).

We can, perhaps, see some of this in the fact that Mr Sanders performs much better in open primaries than in closed ones; Independents are likely to vote for him, but Democrats appear to have something against him. This objection is perhaps of more consequence for the primary than the General, but if it keeps him from the nomination, that makes no difference. Of how much consequence might this be, and what can be done about it?

The accusation of demagoguery startles me, but looked at dispassionately, it is not so unreasonable. That it makes him indistinguishable from Mr Trump is, I believe, a false equivalency: Mr Trump has no discernible principles and no track record against which he can be measured, whereas Mr Sanders has both, and has been quite consistent with them. That he draws crowds and has inspirational rhetoric is unquestionable, but the same could be said about JFK or RFK. (Who were also accused of demagoguery, now that I think of it) But even if we stipulate that he is a demagogue, it does not follow that he is therefore perpetuating a con: he may truly believe what he says, and that message may be successful because it resonates with substantial members of the voting public. Then again, I suppose one might say the same for Mr Trump, so one would have to ask another question: is the message being articulated by the demagogue favorable or unfavorable, good or evil? Mr Sanders advocates revolution, 'tis true, but a revolution neither violent nor unconstitutional. He wants to change quite a few things, but is he really advocating burning down the house in the style of 60's radicals? I think not, but I suppose those with a closer connection to the way things are currently done might consider that no change is good change.

-- Mal

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