Michael Maiello's picture

    Black Lives Matter & It's Not The Economy, Egghead

    Over on another site, I instinctively defended the premise that the Black Lives Matter protesters were foolish, at best, for protesting at Bernie Sanders events. No real need to recap the arguments here, but I've since read some convincing explanations for why BLM should, in fact, target progressive events where they want to emphasize the importance of their message in the line-up of priorities being discussed.  Heck, while I immediately took the "don't shout him down, free speech doesn't work that way," stance, Sanders went back to the drawing board on his own policies and priorities.  Show you which one of us is a public leader and which is a blogger.

    One of my tendencies, and I know I'm not alone here. is to reduce a lot of issues to a kind of exaggerated home economics. I tend to believe that social problems like racism, sexism and homophobia would be greatly reduced, if not eliminated, in a world where people did not have tremendous economic anxieties that cause them to seek scapegoats.  Good jobs at good wages, we believe, would also reduce the frequency of the petty crimes that cause law enforcement to have interactions with black people that spin out of control.  Creating economic security, in effect, creates a virtuous cycle of reducing bigotry on the part of bigots and reducing crime (by criminals from all walks of life).

    But it just isn't so.  Solidly middle class and even very rich people can and will be bigots.  Donald Trump has dynastic economic security and he's still an asshole.  That Sandra Bland had a job did not save her from the wrath of a cop with a secure job and pension.  Having a great job teaching at Harvard and a friend in the White House did not save Henry Louis Gates from unjust arrest. Owners of perfectly solvent bakeries risk their businesses to not bake cakes for same sex weddings just as owners of perfectly solvent restaurants used to refuse service to blacks.

    It's not news that people are irrational.  I'd love to believe that the total absence of material want would make people stop behaving so crazily but even in the world of Star Trek where a Stradivarius can be requested from a computer and delivered instantly for free there is so maniac loudly proclaiming that we should put down our musical instruments and attack the Romulans before they attack us.

    I think you can tell a voter in Ferguson that your plan to tax financial transactions and to use the money ti pay for better schools in their neighborhood will ultimately benefit them and they will see the logic in that.  But you have to expect that they will point out that better schools five years from now does nothing for their current kid in high school who has to view every encounter with the police as a potential life or death moment.  You have to be open to hearing, "Please get your priorities straight."

    The Black Lives Matter protests are about taking what's happening on the streets of Ferguson and inserting it into a national conversation that has so far been mostly about other, though related, things.  Issues will always compete for prominence.  A Black Lives Matter activist does not believe that an anti Keystone Pipeline activist supports police brutality.  But the BLM activist still needs to compete for space and that might even mean disrupting an environmental event to draw attention to their cause.

    I think all of this adds up to elections coming down to more than lists of policies.  Obama is not the most liberal person we could have elected.  Hillary Clinton is not the most liberal person who can be elected.  That Democrats have a shot at 16 years of the presidency split between a black man and a white woman is significant, though.  It won't fix everything, anymore than 8 years of Obama fixed racism.  But it is meaningful and in many ways more meaningful than who has the right idea on the proper level for the marginal tax rate at the highest bracket.

    It really does.



    Because of course, Bernie Sanders' campaign represents little more than demanding higher marginal tax rates. Jesus.

    And since we're playing this silly game, a 73 year old, Jewish, Democratic Socialist would be more meaningful yet. The only way I can imagine topping those "intangibles" given the current field is a Fiorina-Carson ticket.

    C'mon people. It's the policies, stupid.


    BLM made sure that the policies included judicial reform.

    BLM could get access to Sanders and O'Malley. They settled for a meeting with Hillary because they could not get past Secret Service criteria. They interrupted a Jeb Bush rally earlier this week. Jeb did meet with members of BLM.

    I don't necessarily disagree with anything you've written. My comment was in reference to MM's final paragraph which I found weak and unrelated to the rest of the essay.

    Fair critique.

    I'll think on that.

    The lives that matter are the ones seeking to do the difficult work in the community to help keep other kids like MB engaged, busy, with some good male role models and out of trouble. Not parading up and down streets creating disturbances and opening the way for riots and mayhem.

    But the quiet effective work won't get you on TV or in front of a microphone.

    They have already forced the campaigns to address the legal system as a major part of the platform.Sanders had to shift from a purely economic message. Hillary followed suit. Public protests in the Civil Rights era led to passage of laws.

    Did those laws help MB? His Dad had 8 other kids, didn't live with him, and his Mom let Gramma have him.

    Ain't no law or campaign promise gonna help a youngin in his shoes.

    Middle class black kids with two parent homes are gunned down by police. 

    Exactly.  Doesn't matter if they're straight A students or on the debate team or where their parents work.  You could fix all the economic problems in society and still have this happen.

    Police are in love with their power to humiliate black people. Professor Gates was hauled off to jail despite the police knowing he was at his own home. 

    The problems with police have fortunately and at last become clear over the last year. the DOJ has been at work to clean up police dept's city by city, with very slow results. Cops are getting the message.

    I am not saying that fight is over. It will never be over. Too many guns are a big part of the problem.  Citizens need to ask questions and demand justice when new cases occur.

    But campaign promises and laws ain't gonna help kids like MB today or tomorrow or next week or next year. A GOP Congress will never pass a law worth a damn.

    '1 year anniversary of MB' marches need to end and communities need to move on, they provide fodder for our worthless MSM TV to grab eyeballs, and for some to use it to commit crimes raising tensions.

    BLM: Grab a young man without hope not a Sanders microphone.

    Put some of that energy into direct programs, mentors,  to improve families and communities for the people who live there and businesses.

    Maybe they already are, but it's not MSM infotainment. 


    "MSM infotainment" has helped. There have been 40 law changes in various states since Ferguson 


    States lead the way as usual. Even Missouri passed one law.

    We don't know that necessarily. I get the point you are both making. It's a good point. But we've never fixed all the economic problems in society. We've never come close. So how are you so so sure that isn't exactly what's needed?

    Why are you so sure that economics is all that is needed? Why should the efforts to save lives by altering police behavior be put on hold?  BLM sees what is happening on the ground. Should we wait for January 2017 to see if economic changes work?

    Why are you so sure that economics is all that is needed? I'm not.

    Why should the efforts to save lives by altering police behavior be put on hold? They shouldn't.

    Should we wait for January 2017 to see if economic changes work?  No.

    You misrepresented Kyle Flynn's comment.

    Sanders and Kyle focus on the economics, not the judicial system. Take the judicial foot off the black community and economics will improve. People will not be giving away money to pay for tickets. They will have records free of being jailed.

    Excellent point.  Stop over-policing people and harassing them over minor crimes and, sheesh, their work lives and earnings will improve. Hard to do well at your job when a you're stopped for jay walking on Sunday and then miss work Monday because you were arrested over an outstanding warrant from that time you rode your bike on a sidewalk...

    Realistic estimates of Black unemployment, not the phony numbers the government releases, is over 35% and much higher for young Black males so many of these excess workers are simply being harvested for the profit of the Prison Industrial Complex. Stopping this harvest would affect the profits of many important people in government and industry so it will continue even if there are superficial reforms.

    This new Black Liberation struggle is going to be fought by Black people because there is little real support coming from outside their communities, what support there is is tepid and conditional and will never seek to destroy the roots of economic White supremacy or the forces that are used to maintain their oppression.

    The economic situation for most Black people and a large segment of White people is only going to get worse because these people are surplus workers that no one will be hiring because they don't need them and probably never will although some may find marginal and temporary employment.

    This condition is  ideal for Capitalists because their profits are being maintained, even increased, with a smaller workforce and the surplus unemployed drive wages and expectations down among those who do have a job.

    It also allows Capitalist pricks such as Jeff Bezos to experiment on his workforce, with no government intervention, to see how far they can be pushed before they collapse, to see just how much productivity/profit can be squeezed from his sweatshops.


    "Solidly middle class and even very rich people can and will be bigots."  Sure they will be but that doesn't mean reducing economic injustice won't greatly reduce race tensions and even racist attitudes.  In any event, solidly middle class and (perhaps) even very rich people feel tremendous economic stress in America today.

    Partners in New York City law firms go bankrupt.  Highly paid young guns at top tech firms won't take parental leave for fear they'll lose their one shot at climbing to the top of the tree.  Regarding the uber-rich, using racism and prejudices to keep the poor and working-class at each other's throats rather than uniting against the 1% is an ages-old strategy.  When running for, and as, Governor of California, Leland Stanford demonized Chinese immigrants as "inferior" and the "dregs of [China's] population" while employing them to build the trans-continental railroad.

    BLM attacked Sanders, O'Malley, Clinton, and Bush because the inequities of the judicial system are a prime concern in the black community. Ferguson points out that the police are used as the tip of the spear in targeting black communities. The police used ticketing to collect fines. If you don't pay your fine, you are jailed. If you are jailed you have a record. If you take time off to pay a fine, you risk losing a job. If you are jailed, you risk losing your job. The court collects fines. The fines go into the city' coffers. The black community is used as a cash cow.

    In New York City, Stop and Frisk was use to harass the black community. Before the outrage over police homicides involving unarmed people, the violent crime rate had dropped. There has always been a pretense of black-on-black crime. When Ida B. Wells protested lynchings, she was told to address black crime first. During segregation, blacks were told to address black crime. In the face of data showing a biased judicial system, blacks are told to address "black-on-black" crime despite the dramatic drops in violent crime. The diversion is a very old scam.

    Address the judicial system. Then we may believe that it is possible to address the economics. Having fewer black people targeted for crimes like marijuana possession that are penalized more harshly for blacks then whites, would allow more blacks to seek employment without the stain of a criminal record. The lack of a criminal record would be an economic boost.

    In 2016, Presidential candidates are going to have to address racial bias in the judicial system whether they want to or not. 


    Sure they will be but that doesn't mean reducing economic injustice won't greatly reduce race tensions and even racist attitudes.

    Doesn't mean it will, either.  I'm inclined to believe it would help and that people not undergoing economic stress or pressures are less like to be otherwise crapulent.  However, there's still a core, unanswered question here:

    What happens if you give everybody in Ferguson a fulfilling, secure, middle class job but the cops don't stop harassing people over petty matters? The answer is that very little will change. ask Sandra Bland.  She had a good job.  That's why she was driving while black in Texas in the first place.

    Lots will change if African-Americans' economic situation improves relative to whites.  For one very big thing, the quality of their lives will improve.  For another, their political clout and legal clout will grow which means that they are less likely to be viewed as easy pickings by cops.

     On a related point, your argument seems to be that Sanders doesn't deserve the nomination over Clinton because his focus on economic matters is insufficient as a matter of fact to stop racist police tactics.  But, Sanders has been more aggressive in pushing for restraining police forces and for a longer time than Clinton.  Unlike Clinton, he has demonstrated that he understands that economically desperate people are more likely to be victimized by police.  So, he's better on economics and on policing.  Remind me again why you think she should be President.

    Fortunately you are not a part of Sanders national campaign. Your arguments would fall flat and you would alienate black and women voters. Regarding the "protection" afforded by being black and middle class, I give you the story of Prince Jones.


    African-Americans are rightly perceived by police as a group to be relatively powerless both economically and politically, notwithstanding the fact that there are obviously exceptions, like Prince Jones, to the rule.  To the extent that relative economic differences between 1) African-Americans and other Americans are reduced and 2) all Americans is reduced, so will be the sense by cops that blacks as a class can be targeted without repercussions. 

    You ignore my point that Sanders has been promoting the same kind of broad-based changes in policing that BLM supports for some time now.

    More generally rmrd0000, your primary criticisms of my arguments seem to be based on how you believe certain demographic groups will react to them not on whether they are accurate and well-defended.  Bernie Sanders doesn't worry much about whether some people won't like his positions and statements.  Instead, he speaks truth to power.

    Bernie Sanders has a good platform on paper. It has to get through Congress. Hillary talks racial justice and told BLM that she wants to craft policies that she can sell to the public. She bluntly states that changing hearts is not a priority. The focus on getting effective policies passed is important. A police department that is wearing body cameras and under DOJ observation doesn't have to wait for black citizens to be considered wealthy enough to pose a legal threat if blacks are mishandled.

    Sanders approach comes down to gain significant wealth and you will be protected despite your black skin. Hillary's approach is we will have you on tape and we will have guidelines in place for when deadly force is appropriate. The message is don't abuse the citizenry. Period.

    Sanders approach is to wait for legislation to pass and give it time to reap economic effect. We will have racial justice after this lag period. The Clinton approach is here are guidelines that take effect now. Why should blacks have to wait for an arbitrary economic level to receive equal treatment?

    Sanders says policies then economic benefits follow that will eventually result in political power. Hillary says policies and guidelines that don't require waiting for poor people to wait for some ill-defined economic growth before receiving justice.

    Yes, economics should be addressed, but that does not have to be a requirement for receiving justice as a citizen of the United States. Hillary seems more realistic.

    Your characterization of Sanders' position on how to improve policing and stop race-based killing outcomes is false.  It is not simply, let's reduce economic injustice. 

    From an earlier link I posted, dated August 2014:

    When you see the kind of force that’s being used in Ferguson it really does make it appear that the police department there is an occupying army in a hostile territory, and that is absolutely not what we want to see in the United States. I think we gotta rethink a lot this heavy equipment that police departments around the country are utilizing.

    The second point is that I hope what Ferguson teaches us is that not only the violence being perpetrated against young black men, but also the economic crisis facing black youth in this country. Ed, youth unemployment in America is tragically high. It is twenty percent. African American youth unemployment is thirty-five percent. In the St. Louis area it is significantly higher than that, and if we are going to address the issue of crime in low income areas and in African-American areas, it might be a good idea that instead of putting heavy equipment into police departments in those areas, we start creating jobs for the kids there who desperately need them

    Sanders in June 2015 before BLM outbreaks:  


    Here is Clinton on voting rights in 2013


    Sanders ha an uphill battle in the fight for black voters. His campaign has to be aggressive in outreach. Lamenting that people don't know his full record I will not help. He has to make a convincing appeal to black and women voters. He can come to black and Latino venues.

     On a related point, your argument seems to be that Sanders doesn't deserve the nomination over Clinton because his focus on economic matters is insufficient as a matter of fact to stop racist police tactics.


    My argument, in this regard, is that dealing with economic matters will be insufficient for dealing with racism and prejudice in society, in general, no matter who is implementing the policies.

    Now you're adding that Sanders is also better on criminal justice/social issues. That may well be!  He certainly hasn't made the sale, though, given Clinton's dominance over him with black and women voters. I don't buy that her many supporters have been hoodwinked.  I think they're responding to a public life that they respect.  In short, they believe she will be a wise and effective president and that, as BLM found, that her ears are open.


    Can you point to any specific policy proposals or actions that Clinton has taken that demonstrate she is better than Sanders when it comes to addressing racist police, or even as good, or are you just relying on the fact that at this point her support remains relatively strong among women and minorities?  Do you find that to be a persuasive argument?

    Bernie Sanders voted for a bill supported by The NRA that limits damages that can be collected from gun manufacturers. He voted against the Brady bill. He is not known as a Civil Rights champion to the young generation of voters. Can you point to racial justice legislation that Sanders put forth that has been signed into law?

    First to answer your question: The only racial justice bill of which I am aware that has been passed into law since Sanders took office was the extension of the 1965 Voting Rights Act in 2006.  Sanders and Clinton, of course, both supported the extension.  I am also aware that Bernie Sanders opposed Bill Clinton's "welfare reform" bill which has harmed African-American families disproportionately.  I am aware that he opposed the harsh federal sentencing legislation that both Clintons supported and that has also led to disproportionately harsh sentencing of African-Americans.  Sanders also opposes the death penalty which falls disproportionately on African-Americans while Clinton has said she grudgingly supports it.

    In any case, I am very glad Salon republished this Alternet article - 20 ways Bernie Sanders has stood up for civil and minority rights - so I don't have to do any more heavy-lifting on this.

    One among many money paragraphs:

    15. Strongly Condemned Police Violence Over the Past Year: One criticism of Sanders is that he avoids talking about police violence in favor of talking about the economy. While the economy forms the bulk of his pitch, he has repeatedly condemned police violence during the duration of the Black Lives Matter movement. Here he is in mid-August 2014, before frontrunner Clinton ever spoke about the issue. Here (8/20/14) are (8/24/14) a (8/18/14) few(6/6/2015) more (4/30/2015) examples (6/2015).

    You may also find Hillary Clinton: Good for White Feminism, Bad for Racial Justice, dated April 12, 2015, from Racism Review, instructive.

    So Sanders can't point to any passed legislation. Hillary has name recognition. Sanders needs to show up in African-American venues to promote his ideas.

    Hillary's support among women and minorities isn't just strong relative to Sanders.  It's strong on an absolute basis.  Giving her supporters credit for knowing their own interests, I'd say that counts for something.

    But, policies... I don't actually think you have much to complain about.  She wants higher taxes on the rich, including higher capital gains taxes, she wants to expand Obamacare, universal broadband, an infrastructure bank... she's strongly pro-choice, pro same sex marriage, pro gun control...

    In multiple discussions, you haven't really made the policy argument you've been claiming.  I get it, you think Clinton is hawkish on foreign policy.  I doubt she's any more a hawk than Obama. The most legitimate criticism you've made, really, is that she hasn't said where she stands on Keystone.

    Re: expanding/improving Obamacare, I've never quite believed that the "social security got fixed" model would fly this time, but practically, I'd guess if anyone had the political capital & hooks to spend on that issue, it'd probably be Hillary. Economically, along with jobs & wages  stimulation it'd possibly be the most impactful for the most people. 

    Aside from those 2 issues, I'd guess the 2 most important issues I see include a) reining in the security state tied to some more enlightened approach to our colonial handling of minority opportunity and neighborhoods (are they still "ghettos" or just "open fire zones"?), b) productively & positively handling the massive disruptive transition to new energy.

    There might be other sub-issues in there (like making corporates pay their fair share of taxes, or dealing with the transition to affordable upper education, continuous & remote learning, and digitally handling fast-track just-in-time training - I hear Hillary's pretty good with email & texts/tweets - we can only hope her JavaScript/HTML5 web server skills are as proficient).

    But it would be interesting to hear from others what they think of as the 4 or 5 key high-profile issues that should be dealt with by a Democratic candidate/president (not just specific policies or tactics).

    A difference your analysis does not account for is the accumulated cynicism that surrounds Hillary as a politician. When she and Bernie say they will push for the same policy it is much more believable, to many including me, coming from Sanders.  Also, Hillary has convinced me that she is a Hawk in the mode of neocons and if that is not a strike against her in the mind of an informed person I just cannot understand why. 

    Fair enough.  Hillary's been in public life for a long time and has evolved on a lot of issues.  If you see that as "she'll take whatever position will help her to her desired position," I can see that.

    I think calling her a neocon goes too far.  She's a liberal interventionist.  But, so is Obama!

    Yeah, so is Obama, but I got off him based on his foreign policy in about six months to a year. I did not, and so far cannot, see where any of our "liberal interventions have been either non-hypocritically justified or affective in improving anything anywhere. But I guess that that has long been evident. 

    I tend to agree with you.  I just think the motivations and ends of liberal interventionists tend to differ from those of neocons.

    I'm Jewish but I'd never support Charles Schumer or (heaven forbid Joe Lieberman) in a Democratic Presidential primary because they've demonstrated through their voting history that their values are different than mine.  Likewise, despite some important speeches most particularly in Beijing, Hillary Clinton has demonstrated through her voting history that she is pro-militarist, pro-corporatist, secretive, unwilling to admit error, and ethically-compromised.  I'm sorry but for the life of me, I can't see how it would result in a "significant" improvement in the quality of American lives if she is the Democratic nominee in lieu of Bernie Sanders.

    In the UK, Margaret Thatcher was Prime Minister for nearly 11 years.  Since 1990, when she stepped down, there has not been another woman PM and I'm not aware of any who have even run as party leader for the office. During the reign of Thatcher, the country moved away from economic justice and became significantly more militarist.  Those trends have largely continued to this day.  It's very hard to see just how women have benefited from Thatcher's political success.

    Hal, you're driving me a little nuts with the Hillary adjectives. What's with the Thatcher analogy---the only relevant comparison to our current scene,imo, is to Trump.

    In any case, you compare the policy positions of Sanders---a guy who has nothing to lose---against a person who has been on the front lines and under fire forever for absurd constructs like "unwilling to admit error".

    Will the author please post here the complete transcript of Clinton's meetings with BLM in New Hampshire. And

    Then could someone please tell me how Clinton's interactions in this particular case--- logic, experience, and compassion---don't rise to the highest level political discourse that we might expect from an experienced candidate running for President.

    Your arguments against Clinton have helped my own opinions in favor of her jell. Oddly enough the Thatcher comparison is relevant but not in the way you suggest. Hillary needs to stop  being so nice and kick some ass.

    Here is the link to the 12:28 minute exchange between Hillary Clinton and members of BLM in New Hampshire.


    Hillary was straight forward. She was focused on policy. She appeared truthful. The image of Bernie Sanders, in contrast is now of simply walking off the stage when confronted. He needs images of him talking to BLM.

    The idea that women are voting for Hillary because she is a woman is as offensive as that blacks voted for Obama because he is black. When women and blacks vote for white males, which they do in most cases, it is called normal. When a qualified woman or black candidate comes along and is supported by women or blacks, respectively, they are called biased. 

    I can support Hillary and I can support Bernie. The truth is the perception is that Hillary is more battle-tested than Bernie. We have had the Benghazi nonsense. Now we have the email nonsense. Colin Powell and other Secretaries of State had private email servers. This probe is nonsense. BTW there have been probes of Planned Parenthood by several states, and no wrong-doing has been found. MSM loves scandal and controversy, even when none exists.

    Hillary is qualified and is likely to be able to play the GOP make some gains just like Obama has played the GOP. We have to take a bigger leap of faith that Bernie can deal with the GOP. Bernie also has to show that he can connect with blacks and Latinos. Most of Bernie appeal is to whites. Bernie's problem is not a woman problem. His problem is appealing to minority groups needed to reach victory. Calling women biased for supporting Hilary is not a way to gain votes for Bernie Sanders.

    Edit to add:

    Here is a link to the transcript including the dialog from the exchange between Hillary and BLM and the responses of two members of BLM BY guest host Melissa Harris Perry. 


    Calling women biased for supporting Hilary is not a way to gain votes for Bernie Sanders.

    It's definitely something that Sanders is too smart to ever do, even through surrogates.

    Agreed. It would be self-defeating.

    1) Clinton was prepared to meet BLM on her own terms and did so in private in a controlled setting.  Sanders was rudely interrupted twice and both times extended a hand in friendship and was rebuffed.  Nevertheless, he remained remarkably cool and collected and has responded to BLM's concerns regarding his campaign. 

    2) Clinton did violate federal rules in place when she was Secretary of State that were enacted in October 2009 after Powell and Rice had served.  She was not required to use a .gov email address but she was required to maintain all government-related emails, regardless of the email address, on a government server.  She did not do this.  The specific code provision is as follows:

    Agencies that allow employees to send and receive official electronic mail messages using a system not operated by the agency must ensure that Federal records sent or received on such systems are preserved in the appropriate agency record keeping system.

    36 CFR 1236.24 (Oct 2, 2009) (emphasis supplied).

    3) You write: "The idea that women are voting for Hillary because she is a woman is . . . offensive".  Was it offensive when a female blogger at this site for whom I have great respect explained female support for Clinton as follows:  "I'm a woman, so let me try to explain to you why more women see something in Hillary Clinton than men do. There are plenty of women who dislike Hillary and wouldn't vote for her, but most Democratic women look at her and see someone who understands us far better than any male politician ever could or would.  She gets us". (Emphasis supplied.)  In other words, we support her in part because she's a woman. 

    Was it offensive to suggest that many white working class men voted for Mitt Romney because he was a white man running against a black one?  If not, why isn't it offensive?

    4) I agree that Bernie Sanders is having trouble garnering minority support.  This is very unfortunate and one of the big reasons that BLM has acted irresponsibly if its true goal is to improve the economic status of African-Americans and to reduce the incidents of police brutality against them.  BLM should be touting Bernie as the best candidate when it comes to their specific issues.

    1) You seem to be saying that the optics of Hillary's interaction with.BLM is better than the optics with Bernie Sanders. I agree 

    2) You should make a citizen's arrest

    3) You are the one chastising women for supporting Hillary. I think Kansans are crazy for re-electing Sam Brownback. I think that Republicans are crazy for supporting people like Alan Keyes, Herman Cain, and Ben Carson. Carson does not accept evolution.

    4) BLM is dedicated to challenging both parties and all the candidates. Jen Bush's response fell flat.


    1) Actually, I think Sanders' response is more impressive than Clinton's given the context.  If you don't, why not?

    2) Is this supposed to be a serious response? You called servergate "nonsense" and defended Clinton's use of a private email address and private server by referencing the practices of previous Secretaries of State.  I pointed out that a new federal regulation was enacted just after Clinton took office and that she clearly violated it.  If you don't think this matters, perhaps you can explain why.

    3) You called the suggestion that women support Clinton because she's a woman "offensive".  I responded by pointing to a poster at this site who acknowledged that women support Clinton in part because she's a woman and also to note that many on the left (including me) have said that some white men voted for Romney because he's a white man.  So, why exactly is the suggestion offensive?

    In any case, I am not "chastising" women.  What I have done and am doing is point out the disconnect between what women say are their values and those of the candidate whom they overwhelmingly support - at least as far as we can glean from her voting record, speeches, statements, and actions.

    4) "BLM is dedicated to challenging both parties and all the candidates."  As far as that goal goes, I guess ambushing Sanders was okay, although it was still rude and disrespectful.  If their goal is making America a better safer place for African-Americans, they should be supporting Bernie Sanders by working with him and acting as a liaison to their communities.

    Nope. I laid out in so many of your other blogs the policies of Clinton I am expecting and that I support as reasons for supporting her. Then you write a blog of why don't you understaaaaannnnnndddd how dangerous she is and she isn't even good on women's issues.... she isn't fit to be President. Bernie, Bernie, Bernie.

    You actually repeat Republican talking points when it comes to Clinton as well. "email.... oh noes.., laws broken... she should be no where near the Whitehouse, etc and so on. Give me a break Hal and get over yourself. 

    Hillary Clinton is Bernie Sanders equal, in every single way, and then some. And yeah, she understands women's issue much better than any man ever could, yeah it's true. I am voting for her in part because she is a woman... which doesn't diminish my decision in any way.

    I explained that Clinton's direct response in a face to face encounter is more impressive than Sanders walking off the stage. I explained that the perception is that Hillary is more capable of dealing with Republicans than Bernie would be. You don't accept what I tell you.

    Severgate is nonsense here is an analysis of whether she broke any laws. Bottom line is that it is doubtful that she did anything illegal. Get over it.


    Women didn't come out in droves to support Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachmann, or Carly Fiorina. Women look for qualified female candidates. Blacks in NYC supported white Democrats over Al Sharpton. Blacks did not support Herman Cain, Alan Keyes, or Ben Carson, Blacks support qualified candidates. White males have not shown that the majority will vote for a black candidate in a Presidential primary or general election.

    Confrontation with rude and disrespectful people is part of a Presidential campaign. If he can't deal face to face with BLM, what will he do with Russia and the Middle East? Even Jeb Bush stopped briefly to address BLM from a distance at a campaign stop when he was interrupted. Think of the imagery of Sanders standing his ground with BLM. The crowd would be yelling "Let Bernie speak!, He's on your side!". BLM would be on the defensive.

    Your response seems to be that women and blacks should vote for Bernie Sanders even if they don't believe that Sanders can deliver on his promises. 


    Your response seems to be that women and blacks should vote for Bernie Sanders even if they don't believe that Sanders can deliver on his promises. 

    It's very much a "What's The Matter With Kansas?" type analysis where people are being criticized for voting against their own interests.  They've either been fooled or are fooling themselves or are just not informed.  Problem is, people get to decide what their own interests are and how those are best met.

    Last comment by me on this blog.  I'll be posting a new one shortly.  You have explained what you believe to be the case.  I have explained what I believe to be the case.  There isn't a lot of overlap.  I think my arguments are better.  Obviously, you believe the opposite.  It does not appear that our views are reconcilable.

    Still, I'll try one more time regarding Servergate since it seems so obvious to me Clinton violated the applicable regulation which required her, as of October 2, 2009, to: " ensure that Federal records sent or received on [non-government email] systems are preserved in the appropriate agency record keeping system."  36 CFR 1236.24 (Oct 2, 2009) (emphasis supplied).

    Your response is to cite to an "NPR Fact Check" which you say concludes "it is doubtful she did anything illegal."  In fact the "Fact Check" concludes "it's . .  unlikely she will ever be found to have violated the letter of the law." (Emphasis supplied.)  There is a meaningful difference between your interpretation of what NPR said and what NPR actually said and that difference militates against Clinton.  In any event, NPR fails to cite the applicable code provision which demonstrates beyond peradventure that Clinton violated the applicable federal regulation governing email preservation.

    In your next post, you might focus on what Sanders needs to do to do more outreach to the women and minorities he needs to convince. Sanders, like every other politician, is trying to market a product. What does Sanders need to do?


    Oxy - c'mon do you need me to run through yet again HRC's pro-militarist, pro-corporatist votes and policies and examples of secrecy and dubious ethics.  Last time I did this I was attacked for providing a laundry list when, supposedly, nobody votes based on them.  Regarding BLM, again Clinton has done her utmost to protect her campaign from any disruptions or derailments.  She did meet with BLM in a controlled environment.  Sanders responded twice politely and respectfully when he was rudely and aggressively confronted.  Advantage Sanders.

    Hal, we're not going to agree on Hillary's persona nor candidacy. I'll just say that I liked Hillary's interaction with the BLM group. It seemed tough, it seemed real.

    Oxy - that's great.  Here's another positive for Clinton.  She has come out against Obama's deeply misguided decision to approve drilling in the Arctic.  Way to go Hillary!

    Hal, you're too easily impressed by cheap campaign rhetoric that is little more than a personal opinion. HRC made no promise to ban drilling in the Arctic or even to propose a ban once in office just an opinion that it was unwise.  This is standard political Kabuki to distance the new candidate from the old.

    This is not the impression some commenters and participants saw in this meeting. HRC appeared stiff, patronizing, defensive and evasive. This was not a confrontation with Putin where being ' tough' was called for, these were subjects and victims of policies of Clinton1 who wanted answers from her about her support for those repressive policies and laws. They received no real answer and were subjected to a patronizing lecture about what they need to know.

    She admitted that she has to formulate policies that can get passed. She asked what things they wanted her to do. BLM had no specifics.

    Sanders put out a document, but there is obviously no guarantee that he can get the policies in his document through Congress intact.

    What specifics would you have given Hillary?

    Honestly, the most important thing a president can do in this regard is to appoint an AG who will be a watchdog of civil liberties and who won't be afraid to take over a city police department if warranted.

    Agreed. Mayors and city councils may not be able to reign in police behavior. The NYPD was bold enough to turn their backs on DeBlasio and the Baltimore PD seems to be in a work slow down defying Rawlings-Blake.

    Regarding the abuse of civil liberties by cops, this article puts a different perspective on some of the common reasons given and offers a reason which is mostly new to me. To whatever extent it is good analysis it also suggests how hard it would be to correct. Worth a read, IMO.


    Interesting.  I don't know if a federal system would be better.  Certainly, fragmentation helps aggressive cops find work.  If they go overboard in one place and are allowed to resign without a finding against them, they can get police work someplace else.  Also, the lack of accountability is evident, not to mention the lack of data by which we can judge.

    However, federal law enforcement oversteps all the time as well. Partly, this is because the federal law enforcement divisions are also fragmented (ATF, FBI, Homeland Security...) and partly because the federal government also acts with secrecy and a lack of accountability. I'm thinking all those FBI led terrorism ring stings where the FBI gets idiots to yell "Death to America" and then buy phony plastic explosives...

    Still, a federalized system would probably be better than what we have now.  National standards for hiring and evaluating police officers would be a big step, as well as a national system for handling and reviewing civilian complaints.  This would also break the power of local unions.

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