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Wed Dec 23, 2015, 06:34 PM

Some final thoughts on the primaries from a millenial.

(In conjunction with this post: http://www.democraticunderground.com/10027471232)

This is about more than the current election--it's also about the future of the Democratic Party.

First, I'm not a Democrat. I've been a liberal for years, but I've never had any particular reason to identify with the party in particular. As I've studied history, I've realized I really don't want anything to do with it, though I may still support individual candidates the party runs. The Democratic Party is the oldest existing political party in the world, and for all the good it has done, it has just as many years of corruption, war-mongering, racism, discrimination, oppression, and support for the political and financial elites of the day. These things stem from the basic fact that the Democratic Party is a capitalist party; there's just no getting around that.

The Democratic Party is losing people my age. We've grown up with bipartisan support for wars, financial corruption, mass incarceration and the war on drugs, the dismantling of public education, and many other things. People on here seem to think that millennials love Obama because we voted for him in 2008. I hate to break it to you, but we don't. We don't dislike him, either, but we've seen too many things he's done to believe in the Democratic Party as an effective vehicle for change. We are much more in support of movements like BLM, Occupy, or the current movement growing that has Sanders as its figurehead.

That's the thing with my generation; we have completely stopped caring about the establishment parties. We fully recognize the difference between the Republicans and the Democrats; we're not that stupid. Very few of us are fans of the extremist rhetoric being spouted by people like Trump, but you have to realize that apathy is one of the defining characteristhes of my generation. It's so easy to disappear into technology with the knowledge that we're screwed by our loans, our skyrocketing tuition, our joblessness, and our leaders. It's so easy to look at a world threatened by the biggest problem the world has ever seen, climate change, and believe that all hope is lost. It's easy to say that we should just live our lives as best as we can while we have the chance--and I'll be honest, I'm not immune to the charms of a life like that.

In the context of all of that, the Democratic Party means almost nothing to us. I have met three, count them three, people that are full-on Democrats my age. We might support them individually, but we have an almost instinctive reaction against identifying with a particular party.

So why am I starting off with all of this? Because I want people to realize that the Democratic Party is not going to be the party of the future. Sanders supporters here often look at the current mess with DWS and the DNC and still believe the party can be reclaimed--that it somehow can be made "theirs". Now, you can believe me or not, but if you look at the almost 200 year history of the party, that's never happened. It's not going to start now, no matter how much we want it to be true. I think you're kidding yourself if you believe corporations will relinquish the hold they've had for so long.

With all that being said, I'd like to offer a few thoughts on the current Democratic candidates and what they mean for the future of the party, as well as say a few things to each of their supporters.

O'Malley fans, I don't have much to say to you guys. He's a solid liberal, and he'd make a great liberal candidate. Best of luck in your efforts. He's not for me, though.

To me, Clinton is everything that millennials don't like about the Democratic Party. Beholden to major corporations and embodying the half-solutions that neoliberals propose, she comes off as the exact type of establishment politician that we have such a passionate dislike for. Now, she absolutely does have progressive tendencies, but when push comes to shove, she almost always defaults to protecting the privileged. I haven't fully committed to not voting for her should she be the nominee, but there's going to have to be a hell of a case made for me to do so. The Republican bogeyman doesn't scare me, because if it's not now, it'll be next election and we'll be voting for a Lieberman instead.

There's three types of Clinton supporters I've met so far, and I have some thoughts for each of you. There's the people who genuinely believe she is the most progressive option, there's the people who recognize all of her shortcomings but are pragmatists, and there's the anti-Sanders folks.

To the people who think she's the most progressive: are you joking? No offense intended here, but to be blunt, you've gotta be blind. She's receiving literally billions from corporations and funds. She makes speeches for half a million a pop. Call me naive all you want, but it's even more naive to think that rich people give their money away without expecting something in return. Those wonderful rich philanthropists like Gates and Buffet? Yeah, they're investing and shaping, not donating. She supports the death penalty. She supports imperialism. She supports corporate trade agreements. She's not an LGBT ally, no matter how many times you show me her record--she's got ties to creepy religious fundamentalists and it took her until 2013 (2013!) to be okay with me marrying a dude. Come on, now. She can say she supports whatever she wants, I don't trust my rights with her in the slightest. I really can't take people seriously who think she's a progressive hero. I think you'll be shocked by how little support she will receive.

To the anti-Bernie folks, well...can't say I disagree with you on most of what you say. But I don't think Clinton is the answer. Best of luck figuring out your path. I don't agree with it.

To the pragmatists: you've almost convinced me. Almost. She would be a decent tool for getting progressive-ish legislation through. She is a woman, and the value of that cannot be understated. She would inspire thousands, and she'd be sure to expose certain elements, just like Obama has. And she sure as hell isn't a Republican. But...and I ask you to really carefully consider my words here, would she really be progress? Or would she just forestall the plunge that the Republicans represent?

I personally think she would make it much harder for activists to do things. Looking at her recent statements about encryption, that scares the crap out of me. We're already being watched, we're already being monitored on the streets. We cannot have someone who would further police power, and I think she would. She also has been a strong supporter of the prison industry and mass incarceration. I have a feeling she would be worse than Obama has been on those issues, and he's been pretty bad. Her foreign policy is quite aggressive, and another war would be devastating. She has supported things like the coup in Honduras and the mess in Syria. She has planted herself firmly on the side of maintaining power for US military and corporate interests, and that's possibly the biggest issue we face other than climate change. For all the issues we face at home, they pale to the war zones and profiteering we create abroad. And of course, neoliberalism is just awful for anything domestic.

I simply cannot see how she represents anything good other than her (admittedly strong, but still rich white liberal) feminism and the fact that she's not a Republican. And that hasn't convinced me. I haven't ruled out voting for her; I already changed my mind on that. But I really, really don't want to. It's going to take a lot to convince me, and the pragmatic argument so far hasn't. I know this country isn't ready for the revolution that will happen under a Trump presidency. I don't want that. But 8 years from now? We might be in a place for that. I don't know. I think you all should really carefully consider what needs to be done to move us on from the current situation we face. I don't think Clinton helps that.

And that brings us to Sanders. I don't have much to say about him that hasn't been covered on this site. I think he'll call out 85% of the bullshit in our current system, and that's good enough for me. I don't think he'll change much right now, but I think he might nudge us in the right direction for once.

So, to Sanders supporters, I have this: be careful about what you think he represents. He's not the future...yet. Capitalism will not work--any variety of it. Sanders still advocates for that, and that's where we part ways. I'm willing to vote for him because I think he might wake us up, and start preparing us for the revolution that will have to come. But he supports the US constitution. I cannot. He supports private property rights to a far more significant degree than I do. And as far as I can tell, he supports the idea of nation states. I don't.

Basically, I am all for most of what he proposes. But we have to be very mindful of where we are headed after we achieve that. What he proposes will not last. It is only a step on the way to a society that I am confident we cannot yet imagine. If we keep that mindset, we will achieve a ton. If it is the end of the road, then we will fail. Be prepared to leave the party when the party abandons you, because it will.

In the end, I haven't decided who I'll vote for. I don't know if it'll be for the Democratic nominee or not. We'll see. There's lots more for me to learn.


Thanks for listening, everybody. I'm not going to reply to comments, so flame away. Love ya all.

21 replies, 3066 views

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Arrow 21 replies Author Time Post
Reply Some final thoughts on the primaries from a millenial. (Original post)
F4lconF16 Dec 2015 OP
dana_b Dec 2015 #1
randome Dec 2015 #2
Juicy_Bellows Dec 2015 #3
farleftlib Dec 2015 #4
rhett o rick Dec 2015 #5
artislife Dec 2015 #6
SusanCalvin Dec 2015 #7
Cassiopeia Dec 2015 #8
CaliforniaPeggy Dec 2015 #9
LWolf Dec 2015 #10
fredamae Dec 2015 #11
whereisjustice Dec 2015 #12
rhett o rick Dec 2015 #13
question everything Dec 2015 #14
rhett o rick Dec 2015 #18
rhett o rick Dec 2015 #15
question everything Dec 2015 #16
CorporatistNation Dec 2015 #17
GeorgeGist Dec 2015 #19
w0nderer Dec 2015 #20
Waiting For Everyman Dec 2015 #21

Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 06:40 PM

1. my daughter could SO relate to you

and actually so can I. I wish you the best and am glad to see how politically aware so many millenials have become.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 06:46 PM

2. I don't think anyone could fault you for thinking for yourself.

 

And without hyperbole or vitriol, to boot! Well done.
[hr][font color="blue"][center]Everything is a satellite to some other thing.[/center][/font][hr]

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 06:48 PM

3. Replying in vain - hoping you continue to post.

Cheers.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 07:07 PM

4. Great read

 

I know few millenials so I thank you for taking the time and effort to lay out your views so thoroughly, patiently and without rancor. It was educational for me to read your post. Mostly I feel sad that you feel so alienated from the political process but I can certainly see why. I do agree that HRC most likely spells trouble for the left-wing, activists in the party whom I believe she detests more than the Republicans.

For all our sakes I hope the future holds more promise than you currently believe it does.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 07:11 PM

5. Great rant. By the way did you see Buttcracker this last weekend? I was there on Sat the

 

early show. Just sayin.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 07:13 PM

6. brilliant

 

I am an Xer..and I think you all really should be the only ones with a say. We have screwed this up royally.

Thanks for being engaged.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 07:14 PM

7. This old lady mostly agrees with you.

Especially:

"I think you're kidding yourself if you believe corporations will relinquish the hold they've had for so long."

If you do maybe decide to do some replies, I'd be interested to know more detail on your view of the Constitution.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 07:30 PM

8. K & R

Keep on keepin on.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 07:36 PM

9. This old lady likes what you've said. I really do. And thank you for saying it so well.

I hope you'll return when you're good and ready, and when you have more things to say.

You are worth reading.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 07:53 PM

10. No flames here.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 08:03 PM

11. I think you may have met

my granddaughter. We have had long conversations about life, religion and politics. She, like you is a wise young person and has taught me enough about the view of the world through your gens eyes that I stand with your generation. I can't argue with your position-not one iota. You, even at your young age - have evolved in your views of the two major party's decades faster than me-but I am where you are, now. Many of us "old people" are. Your view is much deeper and broader than mine. I will re-read your post(s) and chew on your words for awhile.
I wish every voter was as thoughtful and well informed as you.

Thank you so much for your thoughtful posts.
I wish you great success in all you are about to undertake.
Best,
fm

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 08:17 PM

12. Great post and you've expressed much needed viewpoints. Come back when you can!

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 08:25 PM

13. Seriously that is a great rant. I hope you don't mind if I quote you since you said it so well. nm

 

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 08:26 PM

14. There are too many groups and people who want to topple the government

they are anarchists. Of course, except where their Medicare and Social Security payments are.

You say that the current Democratic Party is not the party of the future. Will neither is the Republican party.

We need a functioning government. Our lives are too enmeshed in it.

Yes, it would be nice to start from scratch, perhaps in 2017 and actually propose a real framework to make a functioning government of 321 million people.

But right now, I will take Hillary for the simple reason that she is our only hope for, at least, keeping the Supreme Court from further tilting to the right. We need her to preserve and, perhaps improve ACA. We need her to keep our sanity.

Yes, I know. We have our own faction of "staying on principles" by not voting and letting the other side win. We've seen it in 1968 when Humphrey was not anti war enough for many and we got Nixon.

So I appreciate many here who agree with you, but in the final analysis, we have to stop the Republicans at the gate.

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Response to question everything (Reply #14)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 08:51 PM

18. The problem with your thinking is that HRC will fall to the same fate that Gore did in 2000.

 

The hubris of DWS and HRC will kill our chances in the general unless Sen Sanders wins.

The math is simple, most all Democrats have said they will support Sen Sanders if nominated but many, many have said that they will not support HRC if nominated. Simple math tells you that Sanders will get more Democratic votes in the general. But the hubris of the 1% actually doesn't care if we win the general AS LONG AS A PROGRESSIVE DOESN'T WIN.

This is a class war and those that support HRC are supporting the Oligarchy. Support the Peoples candidate, support Sanders.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 08:30 PM

15. Those that are fans of HRC won't read what you wrote. They don't want to hear reality.

 

They think that the wealthy Establishment will make them wealthy also. They don't really care about the 16 million children living in poverty. They will object to that but their actions prove it. As a recent Princeton study stated, we do no longer have a free democracy but we live with an oligarchy controlled government. So why do some that call themselves Democrats support this oligarchy? 1. They worship the wealthy and HRC is a strong member of the 1%. 2. They believe that the wealthy will help solve the poverty issue which is crazy because the 1% caused the poverty.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #15)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 08:45 PM

16. We do. And we add out comment (nt)

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 08:46 PM

17. Excellent Discussion! You Do Understand to At Least An 85% Degree Where WE Are As A Nation

and in some ways even more so. However, as well as you can visualize the TOTALITY of the Corruption of the Entire system, including the Democratic Party itself and its "leadership," you MUST understand that in this cycle, (by DESIGN orchestrated by The Corporatist Establishment), that The General Election is currently underway and is known by the current moniker as The Democratic PRIMARY Election!

If you or ANYONE else for that matter wants to have a voice in who will be the next President, such a person MUST Register as a Democrat and Vote in the Democratic PRIMARY Election.

As someone who has changed my Party Registration to No Party Affiliation and presently back to DEMOCRAT specifically to exercise my right to...

VOTE FOR THE ONLY CANDIDATE THAT CAN BE TRUSTED TO AT LEAST ATTEMPT FERVENTLY TO DO WHAT HE SAYS HE WANTS TO DO IF HE IS ELECTED... I will vote for, and do Financially Support Bernie Sanders.

I suggest that you as well as your cohorts do the same for this brief window of time in order to MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

Thanks for participating.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Wed Dec 23, 2015, 09:02 PM

19. All in all, I think Hillary is the best the PTB will offer.

Take her or leave her. She may buy you time.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Thu Dec 24, 2015, 04:25 AM

20. K & R for visibility of this N/T

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Response to F4lconF16 (Original post)

Thu Dec 24, 2015, 05:33 AM

21. Anyone who doesn't see the value of the Constitution has an awful lot to learn.

And if you think you can do without stable, sanely and representatively governed nation-states, you will end up with a one-world totalitarianism (or widespread anarchy which will eventually be the same thing), sure as shit.

But it isn't really my problem, it's yours, because thankfully I probably won't be around to see it. Your aspirations are too similar to the anti-government right for me. But to each his own. In this country, fortunately, we have a right to be wrong. We each have our own responsibility (to ourselves and the future) to think for ourselves and come to appropriate and correct judgments. If we don't, we pay for it that's all. There is a price-tag to being wrong, and it's high. But that's the way reality is too, isn't it, and there's no way to avoid that by enforcing our own supposedly correct beliefs on others. Constitutional democracy is a mess, but better than all the alternatives.

You're bright, you're articulate, and you're thinking. That's all wonderful. Someday (if you're fortunate enough to live long enough) you'll see things a lot differently, is all I can tell you. The situation isn't at all the way you think it is now. As a young person, that is unavoidable. It isn't at all what people blithely suppose it to be. Real vision doesn't come easy and it doesn't come quick, and it isn't common knowledge.

The main quality lacking, as far as I can see, is gratitude. You stand on some very tall shoulders, which you don't seem to recognize, let alone understand, the value of at all. That is a huge mistake. Self-hate, even collectively, does not lead to anywhere on the sanity spectrum. It's a chronic neurosis, which I have seen too often used as a very effective lever to lead people into some very dangerous cults (a major blight of the current time... there's a very good book on the cult phenomenon btw called Snapping by Flo Conway and Jim Siegelman, everyone today should read it), and other manipulative, predatory relationships.

I couldn't agree more with what you've said about HRC though.

Good luck out there in the world, to you, and to all the millenials. You'll need it. Keep educating yourself and learn all you can about what happened before your time, and the cons that have been pulled before -- because the same ones are always pulled over again with a new generation who haven't seen them before, you'll be shocked at how true that is. I believe it's your only hope. (I mean "you" collectively, of course.) It's what each new generation has had to realize and then learn to do.

Life is not a John Lennon song. Too many people seem confused about that. Ask yourself, who does internationalism benefit... everyday people? or the mega-rich?






13 generations of my family went into this place, I sure hope those after us don't lose it once us oldsters are gone. But as I said, I won't be here to see it. I'd like to think this generation won't be the first one to fail as caretakers of what was given them.

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