By Carol Kuczora

I just listened to “This American Life” on KXJZ (ThisAmericanLife.org).  Today (1/25/18) the show was all about the chaos in the Democratic Party and its failure to define its goals and mission.  Really?  To me those have always been perfectly clear:  Compassion.  Fairness.  Ethics. Somebody ought to tell them.  Everything else is a corollary.  Every separate policy in some way is intended to actualize those principles in practice.  But, as the show also pointed out, the bold champion of those principles is Bernie Sanders.  And, he was the one who, as a presidential candidate, drew the most massive and enthusiastic crowds.  How did we miss the boat?

One Comment on “MISSING THE BOAT”

  1. Hillary beat Bernie with more than 3.5 million Democratic primary voters, 56% to 43%. She also beat Donald Trump by almost 3 million counted votes, and I believe based on abundant circumstantial evidence that millions more attempted to vote for her but were prevented from doing so because of the massive voter restrictions in Republican states made possible by the scuttling of the Voting Rights Acts in 2013. Had the rules from 2012 still been in place she would have likely surpassed Obama’s winning numbers from 2012 when he beat Romney by more than 5 million votes. In other words the 2016 election was stolen as fortunately many Democratic action groups are now finally realizing. This is a fact, and ignoring it buys into the intricate lies weaved by the right-wing.

    Bernie Sanders supporters base his alleged national appeal to very high Democratic primary numbers in very conservative states where voters almost never vote Democratic in a national election. Many of these states are solid Rush Limbaugh country where the heroes are anti-establishment, and Hillary Clinton has been maligned and lied about for decades in daily rants. Sanders in fact got huge positive press from the right-wing as the “good” Democrat, the one they knew would an their easy target because of his admitted Socialist pedigree. Donald Trump praised Bernie Sanders on many occasions. In big Democratic states like New York, California, and Indiana Sanders lost by 300,000 to more than 400,000 votes primarily because minority voters know how much Hillary Clinton has done to improve their lives. To my knowledge there is no other politician that has come close to Hillary Clinton’s personal accomplishments, on the local, national, and international level, on behalf of disadvantaged groups, women, children and minorities. That is certainly my definition of a progressive candidate.

    Democrats have been punished for the last half century because the right-wing has persuaded voters that the Democratic Party has been too leftist so how in the world Bernie Sanders, an admitted Socialist would not be an absolute disaster in a national election, is difficult to fathom. 60% of Americans believe we have too much government, and that it needs to be curbed and reduced. Socialism by definition involves much increased governmental control of many public functions in society.

    The very unfair criticisms of the Democratic Party in general are the natural results of us having lost a lot of elections during the last decades, but I for one am proud that we stuck with protecting the civil and voting rights of minorities to the best of our ability even if it cost us dearly. The Reagan Democrats and the Southern Democrats were swayed by racist and extremist libertarian rhetoric and we lost those voter groups, but we will just need to continue appealing to the more enlightened, better educated moderate voter groups that presently are becoming very alarmed over the overt sexism and racism now an integral part of the Republican Party, and the prospect that our social safety net may be dismantled, along with clean air and water regulations.

    The Occupy section of the Democratic Party already collapsed once just a few years ago all on its own so to place the future of this country on this relatively small faction would be a huge mistake. We need to concentrate our efforts on reaching the largest voter group, the independents, because they are the swing voters that decide elections.

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