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Democrats Battling Over Party’s Future

Democrat-Donkey

While much of the coverage of the primary races in 2016 focused on what was going on in the Republican Party as Donald Trump surprised critics, pundits, and politicians alike to win the Republican nomination over a field that included current and former Governors and Senators and political leaders such as Jeb Bush who had long been seen as formidable forces in the GOP, there was a battle going on in the Democratic Party. On the one side, there was, of course, Hillary Clinton, who represented the establishment of the party, had the backing of an overwhelming number of party insiders and elected officials and started out the campaign in such a strong position that it scared off serious challengers such as former Vice-President Biden and others who could have made the race difficult for her with appeals toward the minority voters and establishment politicians that largely made her primary win inevitable. The other side of the battle in the Democratic Party was represented by Bernie Sanders, who ironically isn’t even officially a Democrat. In part because of his ability to draw large crowds and in part due to personal factors, Sanders did far better in the primary than anyone could have realistically expected when he entered the race. Because of Sanders’ success, Hillary Clinton was forced to shift her own message to the left to such a degree that it arguably hurt her in the General Election. Nonetheless, the fundamental battle between the Democratic establishment represented by Clinton and the upstart progressives represented by Sanders became the defining

Since November, the battle inside the Democratic Party between progressives and the establishment continues, and there’s every indication that it will continue well into the 2018 election cycle. Toward that end, forces on both sides are beginning to make their arguments for which the direction the party needs to take. In the short-term at least, inside party forces seem to think that they’ll be successful by standing in opposition to President Trump, who remains very unpopular, and the Republicans. Progressives, meanwhile, continue to argue that the party needs to follow the example of Sanders and other politicians such as Elizabeth Warren and move to the left and adopt a platform decidedly to the left of center. Mark Penn and Andrew Stein, meanwhile, argue in today’s New York Times that the Democratic Party needs to take a lesson from the Bill Clinton era and move back toward the center:

Central to the Democrats’ diminishment has been their loss of support among working-class voters, who feel abandoned by the party’s shift away from moderate positions on trade and immigration, from backing police and tough anti-crime measures, from trying to restore manufacturing jobs. They saw the party being mired too often in political correctness, transgender bathroom issues and policies offering more help to undocumented immigrants than to the heartland.

Bigger government handouts won’t win working-class voters back. This is the fallacy of the left, believing that voters just need to be shown how much they are getting in government benefits. In reality, these voters see themselves as being penalized for maintaining the basic values of hard work, religion and family. It’s also not all about guns and abortion. Bill Clinton and Barack Obama both won working-class voters despite relatively progressive views on those issues. Today, identity politics and disdain for religion are creating a new social divide that the Democrats need to bridge by embracing free speech on college campuses and respect for Catholics and people of other faiths who feel marginalized within the party.

There are plenty of good issues Democrats should be championing. They need to reject socialist ideas and adopt an agenda of renewed growth, greater protection for American workers and a return to fiscal responsibility. While the old brick-and-mortar economy is being regulated to death, the new tech-driven economy has been given a pass to flout labor laws with unregulated, low-paying gig jobs, to concentrate vast profits and to decimate retailing. Rural areas have been left without adequate broadband and with shrinking opportunities. The opioid crisis has spiraled out of control, killing tens of thousands, while pardons have been given to so-called nonviolent drug offenders. Repairing and expanding infrastructure, a classic Democratic issue, has been hijacked by President Trump — meaning Democrats have a chance to reach across the aisle to show they understand that voters like bipartisanship.

Immigration is also ripe for a solution from the center. Washington should restore the sanctity of America’s borders, create a path to work permits and possibly citizenship, and give up on both building walls and defending sanctuary cities. On trade, Democrats should recognize that they can no longer simultaneously try to be the free-trade party and speak for the working class. They need to support fair trade and oppose manufacturing plants’ moving jobs overseas, by imposing new taxes on such transfers while allowing repatriation of foreign profits. And the party seems to have forgotten that community policing combined with hiring more police officers worked in the ’90s — and it will work again today. It can’t be the party that failed to stop the rising murder rates in cities like Chicago.

Health care is the one area where the Democrats have gained the upper hand and have a coherent message about protecting the working poor from losing coverage. But the Affordable Care Act needs to be adjusted to control costs better, lest employer-sponsored health care become unaffordable. For now, the Democrats are right to hold the line in defending Obamacare in the face of Republican disunity.

(…)

Americans are looking for can-do Democrats in the mold of John F. Kennedy and Bill Clinton — leaders who rose above partisanship to unify the country, who defended human rights and equality passionately, and who also encouraged economic growth and rising wages. That is the road back to relevance, and the White House, for the Democrats.

Penn, of course, served as a pollster and political adviser for both Bill and Hillary Clinton while Stein’s political career has included serving as Manhattan Borough President and President of the New York City Council. Both of them have long histories of being allied to the ideas of those who seek to steer the Democrats back toward the center rather than the forces that are seeking to move it further left. That being said, it strikes me that they are largely correct in their assessment of where the Democratic Party needs to go if it’s going to bounce back. With the exception of the 2012 election, which saw the rather unsurprising re-election of a popular incumbent President during a time when the economy was in good shape, Democrats saw losses at the national and state levels during each of the elections during President Obama’s time in office which ended up leaving Republicans in control of the majority of state legislatures and Governors mansions as well as unseating Democrats from the majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. Finally, of course, the GOP recaptured the White House with the most unlikely winning candidate modern politics has seen in quite some time. While one can argue that some of this is due to factors such as redistricting that has generally favored the GOP, it’s also quite clear that Republicans were able to succeed electorally because Democrat had fallen out of favor with a large part of its base, white working class voter.

Penn and Stein are right about one thing, though. Even taking into account the probability that he will end up becoming less popular over the coming year, running against President Trump isn’t going to be the panacea that many Democrats seem to think it will be, especially not in the short-term. For one thing, motivating voters takes more than just a “we’re not as bad as the other guys” message, especially in a midterm election where the voters that Democrats rely on the most are less likely to turn out. For another, in addition to motivating their own base, such a message is likely to motivate supporter of the President to turnout as well, perhaps in numbers that will offset any increase we see among Democratic turnout for midterms. That means Democrats are going to have to find a way to get back the voter they lost over the past seven years. Penn and Stein’s proposal that the party speak more to the issues that those voters care about, rather than the ideological crusades of the progressive, seems from the outside like a good place to start.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    Forget direction…just grow a pair of cajones.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3

  2. Barry says:

    Doug, if Mark Penn is the best that you can come up with, time to rethink.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 2

  3. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    President Snowflake is threatening to stop the Times-Warner/AT&T merger if CNN doesn’t stop identifying bald-faced lies as bald-faced lies.
    Democrats should be screaming at the top of their lungs about corruption and extortion.
    Again…grow some cajones.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 2

  4. Yank says:

    For one thing, motivating voters takes more than just a “we’re not as bad as the other guys” message, especially in a midterm election where the voters that Democrats rely on the most are less likely to turn out. For another, in addition to motivating their own base, such a message is likely to motivate supporter of the President to turnout as well, perhaps in numbers that will offset any increase we see among Democratic turnout for midterms.

    Every midterm election is about “we aren’t as bad as the other guys.”

    It is a referendum on the president and his party and the out of parties’s base is usually more motivated then the party in power’s base. That is what happened in 2006, 2010, and 2014. And so far, Democrats are far more motivated then Republicans at the moment. Democrats lead the GOP when it comes congressional ballot by 7-9 points, which is enough for them to take the house of things remain the same and Trump’s approval ratings are below 40%, already below where Obama was in 2010 and 2014.

    Democrats should worry less about what they should ideology and put all their effort into recruitment. That is how they won in 2006, the party didn’t have some centralized message, but they recruited high quality candidates that fit their districts and states. The GOP did the same in 2010 and 2014.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 2

  5. Dave Schuler says:

    There’s been a battle going on for more than ten years. There was a ceasefire when Obama was elected president, largely created by his appointing Hillary Clinton Secretary of State and thereby burnishing her foreign policy credentials.

    Now the factions within the party are fighting it out again.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  6. Kylopod says:

    Because of Sanders’ success, Hillary Clinton was forced to shift her own message to the left to such a degree that it arguably hurt her in the General Election.

    I seriously doubt this. While she did run on a very progressive platform, hardly anyone seemed to notice. Her own campaign emphasized Trump’s unique unfitness for the office more than ideological differences, and the Trump team, in turn, attacked her far more as beholden to Wall Street than as a subversive leftist. Part of the reason for her loss was a lack of enthusiasm for her on the left, leading many potential supporters to stay home or support Jill Stein. (For example, Stein’s share of the vote in Penn., Wisconsin, and Michigan was larger than the margin separating Hillary from Trump.) If anything, Hillary was widely perceived as being far more in the center than she actually was.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 34 Thumb down 0

  7. Gavrilo says:

    I predict Democrats will continue to rack up huge moral victories in 2018.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 15

  8. Yank says:

    @Gavrilo: GOP racked up alot of moral victories in 2009 and look what happened the following year.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  9. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:
  10. Mister Bluster says:

    @G Spot:..I predict Democrats will continue to rack up huge moral victories in 2018.

    Unlike your hero Republican President Pork Chop Pud.
    He will remain a sexual pervert.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  11. michael reynolds says:

    I think Booman has it about right:

    The way to look at this is not that the party has lost the support of white working class voters by doing too good of a job representing the people in their urban strongholds. The party has lost support from the white working class by doing a lousy job of representing the white working class. And there are a whole host of areas where the interests of the white working class and the Democrats’ urban base are not in conflict.

    For Penn, the Democrats’ problem is that they’ve criticized the police and gone too far in pushing LGBT rights. They’re too soft on illegal immigration, and they’re proposing too many “socialist” solutions. But that’s how the Democrats represent their clients. Their problem isn’t that they do this too well. They’re problem is that these issues aren’t addressing what is foremost on the minds of people living outside of the large population centers of the country.

    The way to look at this is not that the party has lost the support of white working class voters by doing too good of a job representing the people in their urban strongholds. The party has lost support from the white working class by doing a lousy job of representing the white working class. And there are a whole host of areas where the interests of the white working class and the Democrats’ urban base are not in conflict. For Penn, the Democrats’ problem is that they’ve criticized the police and gone too far in pushing LGBT rights. They’re too soft on illegal immigration, and they’re proposing too many “socialist” solutions. But that’s how the Democrats represent their clients. Their problem isn’t that they do this too well. They’re problem is that these issues aren’t addressing what is foremost on the minds of people living outside of the large population centers of the country.

    We have a product line that is attractive to minorities and educated coastal elites. We need to expand our product line and offer stuff you can sell at the local feed store. Let’s talk about opioids, the hollowing out of rural America, the lack of accessible hospitals. Let’s listen more and talk less to mountain west people when it comes to land use and environmental issues that primarily affect them.

    In terms of national issues we need to be very clear on immigration, because this has hurt us very badly. 1) We have an absolute right to decide who gets in and who does not and we should say so. 2) We have a right to attune immigration to the needs of the country. 3) The wall is stupidity, but a national ID check that really finally forces employers to stop hiring undocumented workers is not. 4) In that context we can then demand humane treatment for undocumented immigrants.

    The Big 3 issues dividing Left and Right are abortion, gun control and immigration. We should not soften our pro-choice stand, but neither should we excommunicate pro-lifers who want to sign up. We should differentiate when we talk about guns between densely-populated areas where guns are a net danger, from rural areas where guns have some actual use. And on immigration we need to send a clear message that we do not put the needs of every foreigner ahead of the needs of American citizens.

    None of that is moving to the center, it’s a matter of practicing the tolerance we preach, and putting a little spin on the ball. And again, we need products that we can sell outside of cities, products that rural people can hold onto.

    If the DNC were smart they’d start a long-term program of bringing rural and urban together for town-hall style discussions on issues. If you want to find points of agreement you need to know what the other side wants and what they fear.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 0

  12. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Mister Bluster:

    @G Spot:

    Please do not aggrandize that fool by refering to him as a source of female pleasure.
    He’s as much a G-Spot as the Orange Snowflake is an intellectual.
    Not in anyone’s wildest imagination.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  13. Neil Hudelson says:

    Central to the Democrats’ diminishment has been their loss of support among working-class voters, who feel abandoned by the party’s shift away from moderate positions on trade and immigration, from backing police and tough anti-crime measures, from trying to restore manufacturing jobs.

    First, a correction. White working class voters. Democrats overwhelmingly won the vote of Black working class voters, Latino working class voters, Asian working class voters, etc. That’s not to diminish outreach to white working class voters, but if your prescription for reaching “working class” voters includes ignoring issues important to black working class voters, latino working class voters, etc. the Democrats are going to lose both the electoral AND the popular vote next time around. [EDIT: I see later in the article you make this distinction. Kudos.]

    Second, you join a long list of pundits claiming that ‘working class voters’ were the cause of Trump’s election, despite all evidence to the contrary. The average Trump voter had a household income of $70,000 and lived in the suburbs. Urban working class voters backed Hillary. Rural voters of all stripes backed Trump (just as they backed Romney, McCain, and every ‘tea party’ congresscritter), but they did so with greater turnout. Suburban [white] voters? There’s where your biggest switch from D to R happened. Hell, in every state Hillary carried voters whose main concern was the economy, including in the Rust Belt. When did Trump shine? When voters cited Immigration or [nonexistent] Crime as their top concern.

    Finally, we get to this:

    Penn, of course, served as a pollster and political adviser for both Bill and Hillary Clinton[…]That being said, it strikes me that they are largely correct in their assessment of where the Democratic Party needs to go if it’s going to bounce back.Both of them have long histories of being allied to the ideas of those who seek to steer the Democrats back toward the center rather than the forces that are seeking to move it further left. That being said, it strikes me that they are largely correct in their assessment of where the Democratic Party needs to go if it’s going to bounce back. With the exception of the 2012 election, which saw the rather unsurprising re-election of a popular incumbent President during a time when the economy was in good shape, Democrats saw losses at the national and state levels during each of the elections during President Obama’s time in office which ended up leaving Republicans in control of the majority of state legislatures and Governors mansions as well as unseating Democrats from the majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

    Why do you think their assessment is correct? Penn helped manage Hillary’s loss to Obama–a loss that pitted the moderate against the (perceived more) progressive upstart. WRT to the House and Senate elections we’ve lost in the proceeding years–am I missing the part that those losses hit only (any?) progressive candidates rather than moderate incumbents? Your argument strikes me as “The super-moderate who managed a loss to the progressive, and then whose preferred moderate candidate lost again, is right that we need to become more moderate because incumbent Dems have lost elections.”

    Here’s my prescription for what the Dems need to do, in order of priority:

    -Continue to pursue the coalition that delivered them 3.5 million more votes on election night than Donald Trump, even if that means pursuing greater justice and equality for people of color.
    -Continue to pursue economic policies that help all working class voters, regardless of race.
    -Recruit and run candidates in every district– candidates who can deliver a message that these policies help all individuals.
    -Vociferously defend the ACA, and forcefully remind voters of the basic right of health care.
    -Only after those four tactics are hitting on all cylinders, bring up the 800 Pound Orange Gorilla in the Room.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 27 Thumb down 0

  14. al-Alameda says:

    I suppose you can blame Democrats for the decision by 62 million voters install as our president a man who is well on his way to becoming the worst president in the past 117 years.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  15. Neil Hudelson says:

    @michael reynolds:

    I go through all that trouble of stringing words together, and you provide someone saying the same thing, more eloquently. Stop that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  16. James Pearce says:

    @al-Alameda:

    I suppose you can blame Democrats for the decision by 62 million

    Oh you know I do….

    @michael reynolds:

    we need products that we can sell outside of cities, products that rural people can hold onto.

    And you know I completely agree with this, too.

    In fact, I got a lot of downvotes on Saturday for making this very argument.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5

  17. CSK says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl:

    Can you blame the lady? Gawd knows where Trump’s hand has been.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  18. gVOR08 says:

    @al-Alameda: Thank you. I forget who observed a week or two ago that it’s like the Democrats are the only Party in the country. Yes, the Dems should be reviewing failures and planning for the future. That said, running against Trumpsky is likely to be a damn good start.

    The Rs, meanwhile, have produced W Bush who blew up the Middle East and ran large deficits in the good times before blowing up the financial system. Then they saved W from being the worst President in living memory by nominating and electing Trump. OK, they won an election, but shouldn’t they be doing some soul searching too, and be subject to a lot of outside kibitzing? They could start by instituting super delegates.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  19. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    You can discuss direction all you want…it’s a waste of time.
    Until someone figures out how to battle ignorance this country is going to continue to be fwcked.

    DOE Rick Perry at coal plant:”Here’s a little economics lesson: supply and demand. You put the supply out there and the demand will follow.”

    How do you reach out to white working class voters when they are predisposed to believe complete and total nonsense? How do sell Obamacare when they like everything Obamacare does but they absolutely hate Obamacare? How do you sell reasonable economic policies, that will help the lower and middle classes, when they believe trickle-down economics, and giving tax cuts to the rich, is going to help them? And how do you attack the Orange Snowflake when they are convinced he is a tough guy, a straight shooter, someone who tells it like it is?
    Only when someone figures out how to get around the ignoramus barrier will Democrats win.
    Republicans have fed them bumper sticker level lies for decades. Good luck overcoming that kind of ignorance.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 2

  20. SKI says:

    @Neil Hudelson:

    White working class voters.

    This.

    Despite the claims of the talking heads (on both sides, it is rural vs. urban. It is tribal. It is xenophobes vs. cosmopolitans. It is older vs. younger.

    It isn’t class-based.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2

  21. Yank says:

    we need products that we can sell outside of cities, products that rural people can hold onto.

    Democrats already do this.

    -Democrats gave them the ACA, which helped expand Medicaid into rural areas and yet they vote for people who want to take it away.
    -Democrats wanted to give rural areas funding to deal with the opioid crisis and yet they vote for people who block it.
    -Democrats wanted to revitalized rural areas with clean energy jobs to offset the irreversible decline in coal and manufacturing jobs and also give funding for a job-training program.

    Hell, Trump’s entire budget was a giant **** you to the rural and yet he will win their votes in 2020 no matter what Democrats sell to these people.

    Unless Democrats are willing to move to the right on social and culturally issues, then they have no chance of winning these people over. Economics isn’t what drives them at the end of the day. Granted, it doesn’t mean you don’t craft policy to help them or run candidates in those regions (hell, you might get lucky in a low-turnout race), but I wouldn’t make them a heavy part of the strategy going forward.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1

  22. grumpy realist says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl: Oh lord…

    Someone ask Perry whether this holds for any product at all, like for goat bras?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  23. An Interested Party says:

    I heard a story on NPR the other day about a very conservative community in northeastern California that heavily depends on Medicaid and yet, overwhelmingly supports Trump…there was one individual who loves the ACA and literally needs it to live but who also despises Obama…it ended up being the local government fighting to keep Medicaid even though the locals were opposed to what they saw as “government handouts”…I’ll give Republicans credit, they certainly have a fabulous marketing machine that appeals to these kind of people but it is actually the Democrats whose policies support these kind of people…that is the problem to be solved…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  24. Jen says:

    @Neil Hudelson: I’d add one more to your (very good) list: fight, fight, fight this voter suppression effort being staged by Pence and Kobach. ProPublica reported today that someone from the commission (I think a spokesperson?) confirmed that the databases they are requesting from the states will be matched to “several” federal databases to look for possible fraud. This is likely to result in thousands if not millions of false positives, particularly for those who have common names.

    The effort here isn’t really to root out voter fraud, which is damn near non-existent. It is to “spot problems” in the system, “propose some changes” to “tighten things up a bit…” all of which will end up suppressing the vote.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 1

  25. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Jen:

    It is to “spot problems” in the system, “propose some changes” to “tighten things up a bit…” all of which will end up suppressing the vote.

    Most likely based on psuedo-science, dubious assumptions, and spurious correlations.
    Which Democrats will be powerless to fight back against…because, Democrats.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  26. Guarneri says:

    Let’s see. The Dems carved up the voters into a whole portfolio of aggrieved parties they could throw special issue crumbs to. They ran a horrid woman who was a horrid candidate and rigged the game against a needed Dem voting bloc. And Obama sucked out resources for 8 years because, well, it’s all about me, and whose signature “accomplishment” is imploding while sucking families dry.

    And now the answer is free beer for everyone, “the Russians did it” and, at least for one commenter, an odd preoccupation with testicles. What next, the existential threat to the nation of insufficient trannie bathrooms? Shear genius; that will surely win over the iron worker vote. And you guys wonder why you couldn’t even beat a guy you think is a dunce.

    I’m not to worried about a Dem comeback anytime soon.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 10 Thumb down 22

  27. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:
  28. teve tory says:

    We should differentiate when we talk about guns between densely-populated areas where guns are a net danger, from rural areas where guns have some actual use.

    many people on either side of this don’t understand the other sides’ perspective. If you grow up in the harsher parts of, say, Chicago, seeing a gun means Bad Shit is going down and you may die. If you grow up in BFE Tennessee, guns mean those typically harmless things you use to plink cans and hunt deer with. Then you have the gun manufacturers paying the NRA to whip up a few of the more excitable types with UN jackboot Evil bill clinton schemin to take your guns and put you in FEMA camps! and the whole discussion is borked.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  29. KM says:

    Listen it’s really quite simple: they want to be saved…. on their terms. It doesn’t matter how good the offer is or how desperate they are if its not presented in *just* the right way as to not offend delicate tribal sensibilities. Packaging is everything and for some, pride is more important then a paycheck. That’s why “clinging to guns and Bibles” and “basket of deplorable” went over like a ton of bricks. It’s why the ACA is incredibly popular but Obamacare’s a curse word. It’s why green energy jobs get turned down, retraining sneered at and BS promises of mining jobs embraced… because they’re miners, damnit and that’s how they are going to stay.

    Democrats don’t need to change their policies. They like our policies well enough – they just don’t like *US*. Democrats need to invest in some serious marketing a la FOX and Breitbart to help push the idea that Democrats aren’t here to burn their town down and that policy that helps those urban folks, well guess what great things it will do for you! Seem to be more palatable to the tribe and you’d be amazed at what you can get done.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 4

  30. the Q says:

    “How do you reach out to white working class voters when they are predisposed to believe complete and total nonsense?”

    “If you want to live like a Republican, vote Democrat” Harry Truman

    “How do you sell reasonable economic policies, that will help the lower and middle classes, when they believe trickle-down economics, and giving tax cuts to the rich, is going to help them?

    “If you run a Republican against a Republican, the Republican wins everytime” Harry Truman

    Wow, what an ass kicking in 5 straight elections (POTUS + 4 recent runoffs) will do for some of you ‘Liberals”…maybe coming to your senses?

    If you go back to that grainy past of fall 2016, and look back at my prescient comments (for which I was getting Jeno’s level thumbs down by the nitwit section) you will see a huge overlap in opinion to the article above.

    Some of you neo liberals are like the supply side clowns in Kansas, “the reason the tax cuts didn’t work was because THEY WEREN’T DECREASED ENOUGH….

    Juxtapose that with the neo liberal cry “we didn’t win because we weren’t centrist enough”…..

    Its like, how many times do we cut taxes and expect economic nirvana which never comes and how many times do we run “centrist” candidates that never win?

    My generation of true liberals regularly beat the schitt out of the GOP for the simple reason that Dem policies really were oriented to the working class – all of them, not just whitey.

    I’ve witnessed this game far longer than any of you…and my bone of contention goes back to the DLC and the Clinton/Nunn/From/Bayh/Ford/Reed centrists who declared big gov’t over and started taking wads of corporate cash.

    Opioid crises? Thank the feckless Dems who front for big pharma and could have put in far more stringent FDA policies, but didn’t.

    Single payer? No way when you have Tom Daschle lobbying for drug companies and the President basically signing off on Heritage foundation 1990s style “reform”.

    Off shoring labor? Not when the President declares “TPP is family friendly”.

    Military bloat? Dems have increased DoD spending every year since Bill Clinton.

    You see for some of you young whippersnappers, the DLC decided that money needed to be raised and they went for the Wall St., finance capital, Hollywood/Silicon Beach IP protection crowd.

    Which meant the total ignorance of income inequality while elevating non issues like LBGTXYZ sideshows to critical relevance.

    They declared war on the Catholic church over birth control – the modern Dems went to the mattresses for this, but not on single payer.

    And, finally, some of you are seeing the light on the frivolously stupid sanctuary city madness.

    I wrote last summer that the neo libs care more about guaranteeing court appearances for illegals than they care for the hardships of white laid off Midwestern/mid Atlantic white steel/auto/coal/textile workers. To which a certain genius here said and I quote “phuck the white working class high school grad”….no, they phucked you in 2016 by voting for the lunatic.

    Bernie would have beaten Mangolini easily….he certainly, with his populist worker positions, would not have lost OH, PA, WI, MI….I can hear it know from you “Kansas” Dems who think Bernie wasn’t “centrist enough” to win.

    The Dems have lost staggering amounts of state seats, control outright only 5 state governorships/legislatures, while having to fight 37 GOP governors/state houses.

    We’ve lost 2/3rds of the state houses, the Senate, the House, the SCOTUS and POTUS…and some of you will still shrilly rant “we aren’t centrist enough” bla bla.. Bernie would have been killed by Trump…bla bla.

    I guess, like the Kansas supply siders, the Dems just aren’t centrist enough, even though we’ve been centrist since the Gephardt 1980s.

    And the authors above totally miss the point when they write about Bernie’s success “In part because of his ability to draw large crowds and in part due to personal factors” Nowhere do they mention his popularity due to his attack on the corrupt crony capitalism that workers have to fight against. And this is the crux of the problem.

    Neo Libs got rid of Glass Steagall, gave us Romneycare lite (which really isn’t as good as Romneycare in MA) and focused Dem attention on identity politics, gender/race sideshows and protecting illegal aliens from deportation.

    A digression, Illegal labor has depressed wages for the bottom 60%, but there’s an insidious side effect that neo liberals totally ignore….its now impossible to form a workers consciousness when so many of those workers CAN’T VOTE!!!!!!! We’ve created a permanent exploited underclass of low wage workers who can’t fight back through the ballot box and most libs are ok with that.

    In short, most wingnuts think that modern history started with St. Ronald of Reaganus….that under Dems, we were a socialist dystopian hell hole of eastern European Warsaw Pact economies, waiting in line for hours for a banana or a tank of gas.

    The Dems of the 80s threw in the liberal towel and started running Republicans against Republicans with the Republican winning every time as old Harry warned.

    And now, many of you are doubling down on the stupid….we need “more centrism, not less”, Bernie would have been torn apart by Trump” etc.

    As someone once wrote 50 odd years ago. “the old road is rapidly aging, please get out of the new one if you can’t lend your hand……”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 9

  31. Ben Wolf says:

    In the century in which we live, the Democratic Party has received the support of the electorate only when the party, with absolute clarity, has been the champion of progressive and liberal policies and principles of government.

    The party has failed consistently when through political trading and chicanery it has fallen into the control of those interests, personal and financial, which think in terms of dollars instead of in terms of human values.

    The Republican Party has made its nominations this year at the dictation of those who, we all know, always place money ahead of human progress.

    The Democrat[s], as appears clear from the events of today, [are] divided on this fundamental issue. Until the Democratic Party. . . makes overwhelmingly clear its stand in favor of social progress and liberalism, and shakes off all the shackles of control fastened upon it by the forces of conservatism, reaction, and appeasement, it will not continue its march of victory.

    It is without question that certain political influences pledged to reaction in domestic affairs and to appeasement in foreign affairs have been busily engaged behind the scenes in the promotion of discord. . .

    Under these circumstances, I cannot, in all honor, and will not, merely for political expediency, go along with the cheap bargaining and political maneuvering which have brought about party dissension. . .[i]t is best not to straddle ideals.

    In these days of danger when democracy must be more than vigilant, there can be no connivance with the kind of politics which has internally weakened nations abroad before the enemy has struck from without.

    It is best for America to have the fight out here and now.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  32. Kylopod says:

    @the Q:

    “If you run a Republican against a Republican, the Republican wins everytime” Harry Truman

    This is the second time I’ve pointed this out to you, but it’s doubtful Truman ever said that.

    It would help your credibility not to continue perpetuating urban legends even after seeing them debunked.

    My generation of true liberals regularly beat the schitt out of the GOP for the simple reason that Dem policies really were oriented to the working class – all of them, not just whitey.

    When Social Security was first passed, it excluded agricultural and domestic workers who consisted heavily of blacks. This was a deliberate and conscious decision to gain the support of Southern segregationists in the party.

    When Truman proposed national health care, one of the crucial reasons it failed was because Southern Democrats opposed it, fearing it would lead to integrated hospitals.

    In short, the New Deal Coalition was based in part on a Devil’s Pact with white racists who ultimately fled the party when it became more minority-friendly. It wasn’t the rosy “everybody benefits, leading to bigger electoral gains” picture you’re painting.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 0

  33. Mister Bluster says:

    Illinois Powders it’s Nose and Sports it’s First Budget in Two Years

    “The Illinois Capitol reopened Thursday after being on lockdown for about two hours after a woman allegedly threw a powdery substance in the governor’s office….”

    “The Illinois House on Thursday narrowly voted to override Gov. Bruce Rauner’s veto of a revenue bill that will hike the personal income tax rate — while also voting to override two other budget bills.
    The override motions mean the state has a budget plan for the first time since
    July 1, 2015.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  34. Ben Wolf says:

    Also, Democrats would do well to cease listening to the likes of Mr. Penn and the consultant class who make money by losing:

    Democrats would do best if they abandon broad economic reforms and a more leftward political program, argued Mark Penn, a strategist known best for advising Bill and Hillary Clinton, in the pages of the New York Times Opinion section. Penn wrote that the Democratic Party must “move to the center and reject the siren calls of the left.”

    Progressives have long viewed Penn with deep skepticism, noting that he has repeatedly used his close ties to Democratic officials as a vehicle for promoting his corporate clients. But there’s another wrinkle to Penn’s advice: He now invests in Republican advocacy firms — and profits from the electoral defeat of Democrats.

    In March, Penn’s investment firm Stagwell Media LLC announced that it had acquired a minority stake in Targeted Victory, a major Republican digital consulting company. Targeted Victory, founded by personnel from Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign, was provided consulting services for Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. More recently, following Penn’s investment in the firm, Targeted Victory assisted Republican Karen Handel in her successful campaign against Democrat Jon Ossoff in the Georgia special election last month.

    https://theintercept.com/2017/07/06/mark-penn-centrist-neoliberal-democrats-profits-donald-trump-republicans/

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  35. James Pearce says:

    @Yank:

    Democrats already do this.

    And to say thank you for a job well done, Donald Trump was elected. Republicans are 4 for 4 on special elections this year, control over 30 state legislatures and over 30 statehouses.

    Can we perhaps stop hearing about how they’re so obviously awesome when there is clearly a disagreement of opinion on that?

    (A couple weeks ago I was listening to a podcast with George Saunders. He used the word “facile.” As in, “I don’t want to be facile.” It’s such a great word, and when I heard it, it dawned on me that this was the best word to describe the left circa 2017: facile. This idea that the Democratic party is so great that only racists and homophobes and sexists think differently….that’s facile.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8

  36. Yank says:

    In short, the New Deal Coalition was based in part on a Devil’s Pact with white racists who ultimately fled the party when it became more minority-friendly. It wasn’t the rosy “everybody benefits, leading to bigger electoral gains” picture you’re painting.

    Bingo.

    Race was the primary factor. The New Deal Democrats were not any less economic liberal then the Democrats under the Kennedy and later Johnson administration and yet WWC fled the party after 1964.

    What could have possibly been the reason for that?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  37. Yank says:

    @James Pearce: No one is saying their awesome. The problem is people like you are in complete denial about why these voters are voting the way they are and keep spouting simplistic, stupid, and cliche nonsense that has already been debunked by data.

    The problem isn’t economics or lack of solutions, it is the Democrats stance on non-economic/culture issues (race, gay rights, gun-control, abortion, climate change etc.).

    That is the problem and until some liberals accept this, they aren’t going to be able to figure out away how to fix it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  38. Ben Wolf says:

    @Yank:

    No one is saying their awesome. The problem is people like you are in complete denial about why these voters are voting the way they are and keep spouting simplistic, stupid, and cliche nonsense that has already been debunked by data.

    The problem isn’t economics or lack of solutions, it is the Democrats stance on non-economic/culture issues (race, gay rights, gun-control, abortion, climate change etc.).

    That is the problem and until some liberals accept this, they aren’t going to be able to figure out away how to fix it.

    There’s no reason to think any of this is true, beyond wishfulness.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  39. Dave Schuler says:

    @Ben Wolf:

    For those of you who don’t recognize it the passage that Ben quoted was from a letter that Franklin Delano Roosevelt wrote to the Democratic National Committee in 1940.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  40. Ben Wolf says:

    @Kylopod:

    When Truman proposed national health care, one of the crucial reasons it failed was because Southern Democrats opposed it, fearing it would lead to integrated hospitals.

    The primary line of resistance to national health care was the American Medical Association which ran a scare campaign equating the initiative to communism.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  41. Yank says:

    There’s no reason to think any of this is true, beyond wishfulness.

    Actually there is a reason to believe any of this is true. All you have to do is look at history, data, and actually listen to what these voters are telling you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  42. grumpy realist says:

    @Mister Bluster: The only thing that will actually help us get our finances together here in Illinois is if we basically cut all the state pensions. There are enough aldermen and other politicians who have double-dipped and “requalified” and somehow got their yearly pensions up to ridiculous heights ($400K/year or more in some cases) that although I’m a liberal, I agree it’s time to squeeze the pudding a LOT.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  43. Kylopod says:

    @Ben Wolf:

    The primary line of resistance to national health care was the American Medical Association

    I’m well aware of that, and I’ve written about it here before at some length. But the resistance of Southern Dems was also a significant and underrated factor:

    Following Truman’s victory national health insurance continued to face fierce opposition from various quarters including, most notably, from southern congressional representatives and the AMA. Various compromises might have been possible, including plans that would have attracted southern congressional support, but for its part the White House gave no indication of any inclination to compromise. Doing so would have required compromise not only over the terms of health insurance per se but over the degree to which federal involvement could accommodate segregation in health services and facilities–a much more intractable political problem considering Truman’s reliance on the African American vote in 1948 and continuing Democratic aspirations to court the African American vote in the midterm congressional elections of 1950. The first thing mentioned by a “high ranking Democrat” asked to sum up the achievements of the Eighty-first Congress was that “we haven’t lost a Negro vote”…. Twenty of the twenty-three Democrats who joined the Republicans to defeat the plan in the Senate were from southern states. A renewed reorganization attempt in 1950 was defeated in the House with the support of every single southern Democrat.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  44. An Interested Party says:

    Let’s see. The Dems carved up the voters into a whole portfolio of aggrieved parties they could throw special issue crumbs to.

    Oh please, as if Republicans don’t cater to their own group of aggrieved parties that they can throw special issue crumbs to? Oh excuse me, in the case of their wealthy fat cat aggrieved parties, it’s not so much crumbs they want to throw their way, but rather, most of the loaf…

    …whose signature “accomplishment” is imploding while sucking families dry.

    Oh really? I wonder why it is that most people would rather see the ACA fixed than accept the monstrous rich people’s tax cut bill that the Republicans are masquerading as a “repeal and replace” of the ACA…

    And now the answer is free beer for everyone…

    Is that what rightist reactionaries now call the idea of making sure that everyone has health insurance? Keep using that argument, see what it does for you…

    …“the Russians did it”…

    You deny that the Russians messed around with our elections? The intelligence agencies were wrong? It must be some amazing font of knowledge that you have access to…

    What next, the existential threat to the nation of insufficient trannie bathrooms?

    Typical bigot…who cares about the rights of minorities, right?

    …that will surely win over the iron worker vote.

    Perhaps they should take a page from the book of the buffoon in the White House and promise those voters everything while delivering them nothing and trying to take away their health care too…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  45. Neil Hudelson says:

    @Jen:

    I don’t know if the Dems understand just how much this issue motivates the base AND independents. A month ago the ACLU ran focus groups throughout the nation to gain a better understanding of what’s motivating our supporters and their biggest fears. Voter suppression was #1, and out ranked the next biggest concern (immigrants rights) by more than 20 points.

    And, anectdotally, my own experience managing the ACLU social media here in blood red Indiana confirms this. This past week here are our social media interactions by popularity :

    Repro rights posts: 5k engagements.
    LGBT: 4K
    Immigrant and Refugee rights: 7k
    Voter rights: 45,000 engagements.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  46. MBunge says:

    As I’ve pondered my own asinine behavior, let me share a little bit of crude wisdom I’ve been grappling with. Stop focusing on others. You are usually your biggest problem.

    Stop stroking your egos about how stupid the other side is and figure out how you managed to not only nominate someone that could lose to Donald Trump but also lose governorships, Senate seats, House seats, and state legislative seats.

    Instead of proposing a bunch of self-flattering solutions where what works always 100% conforms with what you want to do anyway, try and figure out why your side isn’t already doing those things. Hint: It’s not because you are just so much smarter than everyone else.

    Pay more attention to policing your own side. This very thread has someone promoting “fake news.” Think it doesn’t matter? How do you think Republicans ended up where they are now?

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  47. Guarneri says:

    @An Interested Party:

    You go, dude. Dem losses as far as the eye can see…….

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5

  48. Guarneri says:

    @grumpy realist:

    And yet a Madigan and crew have known that for quite awhile. So don’t hold your breath.

    IL’s future may reside with municipal bond rating agencies and purchasers. Well done, Dems. Well done.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 6

  49. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @michael reynolds: One of the things that would help is if Democrats would stop people like Reynolds from whining about being tired of needing to promise jobs that pay $70k a year to uneducated lazy loozers in Toadlick, AK and convince them to change their pitch to “what makes us different is that Democrats believe that work should pay–and not just for the guy who owns the business, either.” “We’ll bring job retraining” is too arcane a message–especially for the men and women who took two years of training at the local vo-tech to learn a “high-tech” skill only to see their “new career” become an existing secretarial skill when Microsquash introduced it’s next wysiwyg program. Don’t want to pay $20/hour to the guy who sweeps the floor? Suck it up cupcake!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  50. Ben Wolf says:

    @Guarneri: No, no. It’s all racism, 100%. Democrats can’t change because all the white people who work for a living have hate from 1964 in their hearts.

    Never mind, of course, that an estimated 6.7 – 9.7 million voters switched from Obama in 2012 to Trump is 2016:
    http://www.centerforpolitics.org/crystalball/articles/just-how-many-obama-2012-trump-2016-voters-were-there/
    https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/03/28/upshot/a-2016-review-turnout-wasnt-the-driver-of-clintons-defeat.html

    Nope, they all became secret gun-nut klansmen according to the average OTB liberal genius. Thank god Democrats figured that out in time to avoid having to do real work in reforming their party. And it’s totally the attitude of winners to make up lame, easily falsifiable excuses for their failures. Winners always whine, so you just back up, sir.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 9

  51. Guarneri says:

    Ben, I think you should be on the Dem consultant nominating committer

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 6

  52. al-Alameda says:

    … the thoughts of Mark Penn notwithstanding, how the hell did a flawed candidate like Hillary Clinton get 65 million votes, or to put it another way, 3 million more votes than Donald Trump?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  53. John430 says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl: Calling them ignoramuses and stupid is hardly conducive to getting them to buy the crap you peddle. Much of the article resonates with them. Democrats seem more concerned with illegal immigrants than with the American worker/voter.

    Trump hit the nail on the head with his remark about representing Pittsburgh, not Paris. Today’s anarchist riots in Germany demanding an end to capitalism and Western values say only one thing to the US voter, namely, Screw them, vote Republican.

    Your #Resistance has been taken over by the loonies.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8

  54. Yolo Contendere says:

    @Ben Wolf: Using the info at your link, you could with equal validity claim that Obama got 58% of the vote in 2012.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  55. Yank says:

    This article should be required reading for every liberal, who thinks that the issue with WWC voters can be solved with economic populism.

    https://agenda-blog.com/2017/07/03/primary-colors-on-democratic-presidential-politics-neoliberalism-and-the-white-working-class/

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  56. gVOR08 says:

    @al-Alameda:

    how the hell did a flawed candidate like Hillary Clinton get 65 million vote

    Quoting Cabaret – money, money, money, money, money, money.

    Hardly the only reason, she was also, by any objective standard, the far better potential president. But the fact remains that while money isn’t everything, it’s still the best predictor of elections. And the fwcking gops are awash in money. Therein lies the Dems dilemma. They can’t go so far left they lose their donors. Message doesn’t count if you can’t broadcast your message.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  57. James Pearce says:

    @al-Alameda:

    how the hell did a flawed candidate like Hillary Clinton get 65 million votes,

    Because 2/3rds of the country didn’t vote.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  58. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Yank:

    the Democratic vote among whites without college degrees fell from an average of 55 percent in the 1960 and 1964 elections to 35 in the 1968 and 1972 elections—a decline of 20 points in just over a decade. What happened during the 1960s?

    Hmm – what could possibly have happened in 1964 that pissed white America off? 😀

    Bottom line – aside from the racial factors driving their voting (and those do exist), these people at basis refuse to accept that water is wet. They’re convinced that it can be 1955 again in their dying little burgs – that factories & steel mills shuttered for a generation can somehow magically be brought back to life. That coal mining can be a thing for them once more.

    Why did they vote for Trump?

    He told them what they wanted to hear – lied to them in wholesale fashion on a industrial scale and they ate it up. They don’t want “help”. They deeply resent attempts to “help” them, because IMO acknowledging that they need “help” also means that they have to acknowledge that the romanticized historical fantasies they’re clinging to are just that – fantasies. They’re wistful remembrances of a time and an environment that, for them, is dead & buried, never to return.

    They vehemently resist accepting that. They don’t want it. What they want a time machine, which for obvious reasons they’ll never be getting. Three years from now, hell thirty years from now, they’ll still be losing at three card monte.

    The options for us are basically do a better job of lying to them in the short term, wait for them to eventually hit bottom so hard that they have no choice but to see reality (which they’re already headed for), or just wait for them to die off in the longer term.

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  59. george says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl:

    Sure. But that’s unlikely to make much difference in the outcome. Most people who bother to vote support the home team come hell or high water, and those independents who worry about character/corruption already voted against Trump.

    And the key group, the 40% who don’t bother voting at all (getting even 10% of those would result in a land slide), already think all politicians are corrupt.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  60. Kylopod says:

    @John430:

    Democrats seem more concerned with illegal immigrants than with the American worker/voter.

    Right there is a perfect example of the mindset I was talking about before, when I mentioned how the Dixiecrats, who had supported the New Deal, balked at national health insurance because they feared it might help blacks. Almost the entire Democratic agenda today is directed at American workers who are not only here legally, but are actual US citizens. It therefore should be no surprise that Hillary beat Trump among voters making less than 100K and trounced him among those making less than 50K. (Remember, not all “working class” voters are white.) But because the Democrats also try to help illegal immigrants, you conclude with impeccable logic that it means they care more about illegals than anyone else. You’re literally unable to comprehend the possibility that it’s anything but a zero-sum game; to you, it’s either us or them, and supporting illegals automatically means turning one’s back on citizens.

    And, unfortunately, your attitude is quite common in the populace at large–which is a big part of the problem.

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  61. Jen says:

    @Kylopod: It’s also utter garbage that only Democrats are concerned about immigration issues. There are *plenty* of GOP Chamber of Commerce types who realize that US worker productivity and demographics are a problem unless we figure out a way to get the immigration system fixed–and not, contrary to #MAGA logic–by keeping people out. Maine is having such problems with summer staffing this year that the governor proposed releasing inmates to deal with the worker shortage. These are jobs typically held by foreign college students, or, yes, probably illegal immigrants.

    Business owners know this, and they’d like for a reasonable solution to be proposed. But from W on, we haven’t been able to even have a reasonable discussion on this topic.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  62. Kylopod says:

    @Jen:

    There are *plenty* of GOP Chamber of Commerce types who realize that US worker productivity and demographics are a problem unless we figure out a way to get the immigration system fixed

    The irony there is that the Chamber of Commerce types (including the CoC itself) actually do appear to care more about undocumented immigrants than American workers. (Or, to be more precise, they think supporting immigrants will be beneficial to big business; policies aimed at helping workers, not so much.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  63. James Pearce says:

    @Yank:

    This article should be required reading for every liberal

    Well, I read it….and I think Ben Wolf has the most appropriate response. Picture eyes rolling:

    Democrats can’t change because all the white people who work for a living have hate from 1964 in their hearts.

    I mean, it’s like the 21st century didn’t happen.

    We didn’t get attacked by terrorists on 9-11. We haven’t been at war for 16 years. We didn’t have a great recession. We didn’t have decades of wage stagnation, the rise of the internet, continuing automation, or globalization.

    No, some smart person looked at chart, saw that Dems have been in decline since the 60s, and while they were on their way to blaming racism, they forgot that Fear of a Black Planet came out in 1990 and two whole generations of Americans–gen x and millennials– were born into the “race conscious” society progressives claim we still need. Here we are, nearly 30 years later….and “white people are racist” is still the watchword.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5

  64. James Pearce says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    just wait for them to die off in the longer term.

    They’re not dying off. New ones are minted every day.

    I’ve never mistaken the “alt-right” for a bunch of septuagenarians.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4

  65. Yank says:

    @James Pearce: Yeah, you didn’t read the article at all. Several Democrats have tried to run on an economic based platform for all and still managed to lose WWC voters to Republicans based on culturally affiliation.

    The only two Democrats in the past 50 years to do well with WWC was Clinton and Carter. And both shifted to right on social issues (and to some degree on economics as well.).

    You guys can keep sticking your fingers and your ears, but this is the reality of the situation and Democrats would be wise to accept it and then figure out how to solve the problem.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  66. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @James Pearce:

    Trump supporters, at present, are disproportionately white, disproportionately retired and disproportionately late middle age to elderly.

    Essentially pissed off retirees.

    Feel free to watch video of his rallies, examine the people posting supportive comments about him on social media, etc. You’ll see that the trend holds.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  67. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @James Pearce:

    Here we are, nearly 30 years later….and “white people are racist” is still the watchword

    You’re confusing “racist” with “racialist”. There has been a theme running throughout the WWC shift to the GOP that is underpinned by the loss of white hegemony. It’s not so much that they hate people of other races; it’s that they grew up believing themselves to be entitled to first place based on their being Caucasian.

    All of this predilection for nostalgia they evince on a regular basis is predicated in that same fundamental concept – they long for a time in which their racially delineated social caste was at the top of the pecking order.

    The trend since the 1960s has been one long, continuous erosion of white cultural & economic hegemony. They’re finding themselves now on the same level as those they once considered (and probably still consider) to be beneath them. If you consider it seriously, you can tie just about every “issue” they blabber about – immigration, jobs, whatever – back to that same basic concept.

    They just do not care for no longer being number one, and the GOP has played to that gallery of fears & perceived slights – indeed masterfully manipulated it for decades now. It is what it is. They want something they can’t ever have again, they resent not having it, and until they either hit bottom or die out in numbers sufficient to dilute the advantage that pandering to them has provided to the GOP, we’ll continue to see the same electoral trends.

    Unless we start playing the same game anyway.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  68. HarvardLaw92 says:

    and note: before you go there, you should note that the piece linked to above considers the elections in 1968 and 1972, but doesn’t mention the midterm elections in 1966. The point at which this WWC shift to the GOP begins.

    In which Democrats, just two years after massive gains which gave the party super-majorities, lost 47 seats in the House. The temptation would obviously be to jump to the conclusion that this was caused by a knee-jerk reaction in the South.

    That conclusion would be in error. The map for that year shows Republican gains in 32 states. Bizarrely (or not …), the Democrats gained seats in both Mississippi and Alabama. That event ceases to seem bizarre when you look into the backgrounds of the abject racists / Wallace supporters who won them.

    White America clearly didn’t care for events which occurred under Democratic control between 1964 and 1966. You shouldn’t have any difficulty ferreting out what those events were.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  69. Gavrilo says:

    When whites vote for Republicans by a 60-40 margin, it’s because Republicans manipulate and exploit their racial fears.

    When blacks vote for Democrats by a 90-10 margin, it’s because Democrats are good and pure and do a fantastic job representing their interests.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 8

  70. KM says:

    @James Pearce:

    They’re not dying off. New ones are minted every day.

    But not enough. They need to sustain replacement levels or better and that’s not happening. The alt-right is what happens when 4chan incarnates as the CNN meme flap shows. That’s asshats being asshats in their natural habitat, not a new national movement swelling in size.

    If they weren’t dying off, they wouldn’t be screaming about diversity equaling white genocide. They know their time as majority control is almost up and the panic is palpable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  71. michael reynolds says:

    @Gavrilo:
    That’s the kind of thing that sounds clever . . . in the absence of facts. Post-election analysis has clearly shown that cultural panic is the driving force behind Trumpism. Equating the fears of the 60%, who happen to have possession of all the money, and all the political power, and have since the nation’s founding, with the 13% who have neither is ridiculous.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  72. Monala says:

    @Neil Hudelson: Actually, I think you said it much better than Michael. He thinks we can re-attract the WWC with his prescriptions. This article says otherwise – the Democrats have been shedding WWC voters since the 1960s, whether we ran populist candidates who championed labor and small farmers, or neoliberal candidates who promoted economic growth and tough on crime policies, or progressive candidates who advocated for LGBT and minority rights.

    The TL; DR of the linked article: History shows that Dems aren’t going to win back most WWC no matter what they promote, so don’t worry about appealing to them. Instead, run on policies that are good for the country regardless (including the WWC), and try to win independents and weakly committed Dems.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  73. Yank says:

    <blockquoteThe TL; DR of the linked article: Dems aren’t going to win back most WWC no matter what they promote, so don’t worry about appealing to them. Instead, run on policies that are good for the country regardless (including the WWC), and try to win independents and weakly committed Dems.

    Exactly.

    The election loss has really caused Democrats and liberals to overthink things. They lost by a total of 70k in 3 states, this less then the average attendance to a NY Giants football game. In reality, we lost a close election with a candidate with historically bad favorabilities, granted it is not all her fault, but it is what it is.

    Contrary to popular belief, the Democrats did move to the left in 2016. Hillary’s platform was more liberal then Obama’s 2012 and 2008 platform and that is good thing.

    Again, this doesn’t mean you throw these people under the bus. But Democrats shouldn’t waste time trying craft an agenda to attract them like President Clinton did in 1992.

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  74. Monala says:

    @the Q: I shared this in response to Neil, but I’m sharing it with you, too. It’s an overview of every presidential primary and election since the 1960s, and it shows that Democrats have been losing the WWC since the 1960s, whether they ran populists, neoliberals, or progressives.

    ETA:

    My generation of true liberals regularly beat the schitt out of the GOP for the simple reason that Dem policies really were oriented to the working class – all of them, not just whitey.

    If you’re talking about the FDR generation, that’s not the case. A lot of policies were just, or primarily, for white people, like Social Security, which initially wasn’t for domestic or agricultural workers, of which a majority of African-Americans were at the time; or FHA loans which due to redlining, AAs were unable to access.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  75. Gavrilo says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Post-election analysis has clearly shown that cultural panic is the driving force behind Trumpism.

    That’s not true at all. Post-election analysis has actually shown that the key to Trump’s win was that he flipped several million WWC Obama voters, which gave him wins in key states (As was linked to earlier in the thread.) People don’t vote for a black guy if they’re motivated by racism.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  76. James Pearce says:

    @Yank:

    Yeah, you didn’t read the article at all.

    Yeah, okay….

    I mean, if you got something different than I did from reading it, does it mean you didn’t read it?

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Trump supporters, at present, are disproportionately white, disproportionately retired and disproportionately late middle age to elderly.

    That word “disproportionately” seems to be doing a lot of work…

    Yes, more white retired middle age voters pulled the lever for Trump. But that doesn’t mean that Trump’s support relies on white retirees.

    They have Milo, Spencer, Lahren, all the Reddit trolls, most of the vets. And we have…Bernie Sanders?

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  77. Tyrell says:

    The Democratic Party needs to go out and listen to the people in the south. The party leaders wrote the south off some time ago.

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  78. Kylopod says:

    @Yank:

    Contrary to popular belief, the Democrats did move to the left in 2016. Hillary’s platform was more liberal then Obama’s 2012 and 2008 platform and that is good thing.

    Part of the problem is that people get caught in superficial frames promoted heavily by the media. The born-and-bred billionaire who proposes to slash regulations and corporate tax rates is the “salt-of-the-earth populist,” while the candidate who rose from modest means and whose entire agenda consists of policies aimed at protecting American workers is the out-of-touch elitist… because… because… TPP! Goldman Sachs!

    It reminds me in some ways of how the Republicans appropriated the word “values,” as if the liberal belief in using government to aid the poor and needy didn’t constitute values, only banning abortion and restricting gay rights did.

    These frames are so pervasive that even a lot of people outside the GOP coalition end up thinking in terms of them. It’s one of the GOP’s more under-appreciated successes, the way they seized control of the language so that seemingly mundane expressions (values, working class, populist) became infused with connotations favorable to them, but which pass unnoticed because people take them for granted.

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  79. James Pearce says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    White America clearly didn’t care for events which occurred under Democratic control between 1964 and 1966.

    Interesting that Democratic history starts here, and not a few decades before, when Southern Democrats were elbow deep in Jim Crow, or during the 1940s and 50s, when black southerners escaped their rural enclaves and traveled north and west for jobs.

    Did they find a utopia? No, they found that things up north and out west weren’t that much different from the Jim Crow south. It was almost as if the northerners were cool with black people until they actually had to live with them.

    Soon white people, good liberals included, abandoned the cities and fled to the suburbs. This was going on during, and after, LBJ signed the CRA.

    In 1968, George Wallace, a lifelong Democrat, carried 5 southern states as a segregationist independent. By 1972, Nixon’s “southern strategy” was in place.

    But hey, let’s simplify it and call 1964 the turning point…

    @KM:

    They need to sustain replacement levels or better and that’s not happening.

    I would have agreed with that a few years ago, but the winds have changed since then. The GOP has gone soft ideologically while the left has calcified into this…I don’t know what it is.

    Do I think the future belongs to the brittle over the flexible? No.

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  80. al-Alameda says:

    @James Pearce:

    Interesting that Democratic history starts here, and not a few decades before, when Southern Democrats were elbow deep in Jim Crow, or during the 1940s and 50s, when black southerners escaped their rural enclaves and traveled north and west for jobs.

    That is because post 1964 demarcates the fault line that separates modern (current) Democratic and Republican parties from their what they were before that. What do you suggest, view current racial politics through the prism of our pre-1964 landscape?

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  81. Kylopod says:

    @James Pearce:

    In 1968, George Wallace, a lifelong Democrat, carried 5 southern states as a segregationist independent.

    Four out of those five states had gone to Goldwater in the previous cycle, they all went to Nixon in the next cycle, and they would all eventually turn solid red. It’s likely that if Wallace hadn’t been in the race, those states would have gone to Nixon.

    And while Wallace was a lifelong Democrat, much of the AIP’s platform was soon incorporated into the GOP. The AIP nominee in 1972 was a Bircher and ex-Republican. Historians today consider Wallace’s agenda to have been instrumental in the rise of the New Right.

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  82. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @James Pearce:

    You’ll note that I said Republicans gained seats in 32 states, and took pains to point out that it wasn’t localized to the south. It wasn’t even chiefly the south. It was everywhere. New York. Maryland. Michigan. You name it.

    Northern. Midwestern. Western. People from varied regions with vastly different cultural realities, who nonetheless shared the habit of having voted democratic forever, all suddenly decided at the same time, in the same election, not to do so. Let’s not kid ourselves about why …

    I’ve noted on more than one occasion that my own hometown of Baltimore was (and in many ways still is) a deeply racist place despite being a thoroughly “Northern” city. Redlining. Block busting. Restrictive covenants. All invented in Baltimore. Few can forget how ugly anti-busing protests were in Boston. African-Americans didn’t live below 110th Street in NYC if they valued their safwty. Hell man, Jim Crow laws had their origin in Massachusetts. You’re making my point for me. We were – and we are a society which is – like it or not – stratified along racial lines. 1964 to 1966 upset that established order. The good white folk of America didn’t like it then.

    And they don’t like it now.

    It isn’t difficult to figure out why …

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  83. An Interested Party says:

    When blacks vote for Democrats by a 90-10 margin, it’s because Democrats are good and pure and do a fantastic job representing their interests Democrats do a decent job representing their interests, while their only alternative, the GOP, is full of people who are openly hostile to them and who show this hostility by doing everything they can to prevent them from voting.

    It really isn’t all that complicated to understand why ethnic minorities vote overwhelmingly for Democrats while shunning Republicans…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  84. James Pearce says:

    @al-Alameda:

    What do you suggest, view current racial politics through the prism of our pre-1964 landscape?

    I suggest a more nuanced –and realistic– view of Dem policies when it comes to race. They are not the champions of equality they think they are.

    @Kylopod:

    Four out of those five states had gone to Goldwater in the previous cycle, they all went to Nixon in the next cycle, and they would all eventually turn solid red. It’s likely that if Wallace hadn’t been in the race, those states would have gone to Nixon.

    They also seceded back in the 1860s, but yes…those states were the vanguard of a political realignment wherein they stayed mostly racist, and the parties basically flipped.

    In 2017, these states have the largest percentage of black people living in them. How is it that the blackest states can be Republican strongholds? Racism? Voter suppression?

    @HarvardLaw92:

    You’re making my point for me.

    Is your point that Democrats and liberals are more interested in patting themselves on the back for helping black people than they are in actually helping black people?

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  85. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @James Pearce:

    I mean, if you got something different than I did from reading it, does it mean you didn’t read it?

    No, but it could mean that one or the other or both of you read the article with a goal of confirmation bias. But carry on with your unjustly victimized schtick, by all means.

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  86. Kylopod says:

    @James Pearce:

    In 2017, these states have the largest percentage of black people living in them. How is it that the blackest states can be Republican strongholds?

    The answer is simple: black voters in those states vote overwhelmingly Democrat, but white voters there vote overwhelmingly Republican. In Georgia, for example, where blacks make up 30% of the population, 89% of them voted for Hillary, but 75% of the whites voted for Trump.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  87. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @James Pearce:

    No – my point is that this exodus of the WWC from their historic base in the Democratic Party has in large part been them lashing out – both at the loss of white privilege as they knew it and at a world which has progressed socially beyond their comfort level.

    We aren’t getting them back.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  88. KM says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    We aren’t getting them back.

    Agreed.

    Let’s say Dems ran a platform that was pro-coal, pro-small business, free education (not just college but continuing education et al), first time home buyer credits up to $20K, debt forgiveness for student loans and mortgages up to $20K, a 30% tax cut for anyone making under $250K, free childcare for life and had a healthcare plan that made no drug have a copay of more then $50. All nice shinies for working class and middle America to help climb on up the economic ladder. Catch is, all the social stuff comes with it: no more bathroom bills, religious freedom BS, SSM and abortion is the law of the land. AA and other minority programs run at the same level. No travel ban, Syrian refugees welcome and Dreamers can stay. You get the economic benefits with the current focus on social rights.

    How many WWC would that flip? My guess: not enough to matter. There’s a pretty clear reason why the things that would make their lives much better have an unacceptable price tag to them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  89. James Pearce says:

    @Just ‘nutha ig’nint cracker:

    No, but it could mean that one or the other or both of you read the article with a goal of confirmation bias.

    Certainly possible, but I saw Yank’s “didn’t read it” comment as a blip of bad faith. I mean, as a good liberal, I did my “required reading,” was unpersuaded by it, and was immediately accused of not reading it.

    @Kylopod:

    In Georgia, for example, where blacks make up 30% of the population, 89% of them voted for Hillary, but 75% of the whites voted for Trump.

    Yes, but put like this you’re skewing things just a little. GA has over 3 million black people. If 89% of them voted for Hillary, she would easily have won. Trump got 2,068,623 votes, while Hillary got 1,837,300. It’s not really a stark difference. Six points, maybe. How many black voters would we need to close that gap? (About 8% of the state’s available black vote. If they go to 9%, GA’s a blue state.)

    60% of GA’s population didn’t even vote, and they had record turn-out last year.

    So I’m asking, is that because of racism? Is it because of voter suppression? Or is it because of lack of interest?

    @HarvardLaw92:

    both at the loss of white privilege as they knew it and at a world which has progressed socially beyond their comfort level.

    I get it, but this is true in certain places, and not true at all in others. All the privileged white people up in Maine (96.5% white) aren’t feeling the loss of white privilege the same way that the white people in California (46% white) or Texas (52% white) are feeling it. Maybe they’re not feeling it at all. Maybe in a state where 96.5% of the people are white, the concept of “white privilege” has no actual meaning.

    And look, I’m not dismissing or minimizing the racial problems in this country. They are immense, but they are not being fixed by our political parties, either one of them.

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  90. John430 says:

    @Kylopod: You seem to think that illegal immigrants are voters. You gotta start asking what do the VOTERS want?

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  91. An Interested Party says:

    In 2017, these states have the largest percentage of black people living in them. How is it that the blackest states can be Republican strongholds? Racism? Voter suppression?

    At the Congressional level, gerrymandering, of course…pushing as many of those black people as possible into just a few districts…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  92. Yank says:

    No – my point is that this exodus of the WWC from their historic base in the Democratic Party has in large part been them lashing out – both at the loss of white privilege as they knew it and at a world which has progressed socially beyond their comfort level.

    We aren’t getting them back.

    Yup.

    This is why Democrats of late have been trying to attract college-educated whites who live in the suburbs. A lot of liberals don’t like it, but they are more likely to be open to more socially-progressive Democrats. The downside is that might mean more moderate Democrats on economics in some areas. But this is unfortunately the hand they have been dealt with.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  93. Matt says:

    @Kylopod:

    It’s one of the GOP’s more under-appreciated successes, the way they seized control of the language so that seemingly mundane expressions (values, working class, populist) became infused with connotations favorable to them, but which pass unnoticed because people take them for granted.

    I agree entirely and it’s something that we NEED to address. Right now the GOP can practically redefine a word overnight and liberals have no way of doing the same.

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  94. Guarneri says:

    @Matt:

    It’s just as wicked as it seems……..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  95. Jen says:

    @Yank:

    This is why Democrats of late have been trying to attract college-educated whites who live in the suburbs. A lot of liberals don’t like it, but they are more likely to be open to more socially-progressive Democrats. The downside is that might mean more moderate Democrats on economics in some areas. But this is unfortunately the hand they have been dealt with.

    Exactly. This is really a very important point, and why Democrats on the left need to realize that purity tests aren’t going to work. I’ve said it before, Americans LOVE big government and services. They just don’t like paying for it, and when it all comes down to pulling the lever for someone who is a lovely person but promises to raise their taxes vs. a jerk who promises not to, most of the time they’ll go for the one who will keep money in their pockets.

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  96. Tyrell says:

    @al-Alameda: Most southern Democrats were not racists in the 1960’s and are not racists now. That is propaganda that has been put out by the news media for decades. My friends and neighbors were Democrats and were not racists. The head of the county Democratic party was not racist. A lot of people opposed the heavy handed tactics of the Federal government. You have to think back to reconstruction. Memories are long here.
    Most of the people here are still Democrats but they oppose the views of the party leadership that keeps costing them elections because they are so out of touch and out in deep left field. Here the local elected offices are still held by Democrats. Republicans are still scarce around here. That has been the tradition for 100+ years.
    Hopefully some day the Democratic party will get leaders who will stand for the middle class common people. Then they will again win in the south.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 7

  97. Mister Bluster says:

    @Matt:..Right now the GOP can practically redefine a word overnight…

    Example: Pussy grabbing sexual pervert=Republican candidate President USA.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  98. michael reynolds says:

    @Gavrilo:
    You are wrong. Nate, the WaPo and the NYT at very least have done major examinations of the polling data and it is cultural panic. You don’t like that answer, but it’s reality. Look at the polls, look at the analyses.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  99. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @Tyrell: “A lot of people opposed the heavy handed tactics of the Federal government after it started giving the same stuff we were getting to those uppity black folk.

    Fixed that for you (and your pillowcase has slipped).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  100. gVOR08 says:

    @Kylopod:

    It’s one of the GOP’s more under-appreciated successes, the way they seized control of the language

    Indeed. It’s quite Orwellian.

    You can do that sort of thing when you have enough money to support the massive “Wingnut Welfare” infrastructure full of people like Frank Luntz who “advocated use of vocabulary crafted to produce a desired effect; including use of the term death tax instead of estate tax, and climate change instead of global warming.” (WIKI). You can’t lie as effectively as gops do without a lot of preparation and coordination, evidence of malice aforethought.

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  101. al-Ameda says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    @James Pearce:

    You’re making my point for me. We were – and we are a society which is – like it or not – stratified along racial lines. 1964 to 1966 upset that established order. The good white folk of America didn’t like it then.
    And they don’t like it now.
    It isn’t difficult to figure out why …

    Thank you H92, dead on.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  102. James Pearce says:

    @al-Ameda: I’m still having trouble figuring out how Boomers and Gen Xers and Millenials, who never really experienced the old pre-1964 order, can possibly be upset that it was upended, oh, 53 years ago.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  103. al-Ameda says:

    @James Pearce:

    I’m still having trouble figuring out how Boomers and Gen Xers and Millenials, who never really experienced the old pre-1964 order, can possibly be upset that it was upended, oh, 53 years ago

    Boomers? Boomers were coming of age during the seminal years of Civil Rights revolution in America, so yes, they were extremely aware of that world order and those issues. Gen-X and Millenials? Well, there parents are Boomers so there is that.

    But really, I’m not sure that that is the question here – I thought it was just an acknowledgment of the modern change in our political culture.

    It is, the 1964-1966 period, the story of how the Democratic Party went from being, among other things, the party of Southern racial discrimination, segregation and apartheid, to the party that now now receives the electoral support of 80% to 90% of Black Americans. All the while, Southern Whites, and later working Northern Whites, became reliably Republican.

    Again, to reiterate, I am from a very conservative law enforcement family, and probably one of 2 liberal/progressives among the ten of us. And, not surprisingly, most of our family friends are conservative law enforcement families too. So, I’m quite accustomed to hearing the opposition viewpoints – and perhaps that’s not true of many liberals. I’m not delicate, I can take it.

    What I find interesting is that I am very willing to discuss an issue (any issue) on the merits, but most of my family is not interested in such an exchange. What I get from them is usually pre-packaged FoxNews opinions and talking points on all current issues.

    Finally, I’d say that the current level of contempt/disrespect between liberal and conservatives is a two-way street, however “both sides do it” does not begin to accurately describe the political world we live in now. Conservatives have a seething anger and contempt of their opposition that is not nearly matched in intensity by liberals. Yet, the preferred Talking Point is that liberals are the ones who must change, and no such expectations are on conservatives.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  104. Gustopher says:

    @Gavrilo:

    When whites vote for Republicans by a 60-40 margin, it’s because Republicans manipulate and exploit their racial fears.

    When blacks vote for Democrats by a 90-10 margin, it’s because Democrats are good and pure and do a fantastic job representing their interests.

    When blacks vote for Democrats by a 90-10 margin, that is also because Republicans manipulate and exploit their racial fears. Do you think that Blacks, Latinos and various other minorities are blind?

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  105. Mister Bluster says:

    Boomers were coming of age during the seminal years of Civil Rights revolution in America, so yes, they were extremely aware of that world order and those issues.

    Anecdote:
    I was born in 1948. Don’t know how extreme my awareness was in the 50’s in elementary school but I do have a vague memory of an exchange with my dad when I said: “But the Supreme Court said that separate but equal is not legal..”
    I was probably in the 6th or 7th grade.

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  106. James Pearce says:

    @al-Ameda:

    Boomers were coming of age during the seminal years of Civil Rights revolution in America, so yes, they were extremely aware of that world order and those issues.

    Yeah, I was actually kind of prepared for that response.

    If you were the first baby born during the baby boom, let’s say late 45, early 46, you would have been 19-20 years old in 1964. How attached would you be, really, to the “old order” and how mad would you be if it was dismantled?

    My Mom, a boomer born in ’55 and who just turned 63 last month, was 9 years old when LBJ signed the CRA. How clearly do you remember the political climate from when you were 9 years old?

    Sure, I’ll acknowledge that was the start of the political realignment, but that realignment was complete by the end of the 70s. Anyone under 50 was born into a post-CRA world. Anyone under 60 only has dim childhood memories of a segregated America, and a lifetime of experience in the desegregated one. That’s not to say they have memories of a blissful harmonious racial utopia, because that’s never been the case, but let’s stop telling ourselves that Republicans control the government –almost all of them– because they’re racist and the left are the tireless champions of racial justice.

    For instance, this:

    the party that now now receives the electoral support of 80% to 90% of Black Americans.

    They don’t, actually, have the electoral support 80% to 90% of black Americans. What that figure means is that black Americans vote for Dems….or they don’t vote at all.

    Black turn-out dropped this year. Maybe they were voting but with their feet?

    Also:

    Conservatives have a seething anger and contempt of their opposition that is not nearly matched in intensity by liberals.

    Not yet, but if we’re not careful, it will be matched, and perhaps even surpassed. I get downvoted every time I say it, but the anti-white male vibe on the left is palpable. Even white male lefties get in on it. “I’m one of the good ones,” they say.

    Where have we heard that stuff before?

    Yet, the preferred Talking Point is that liberals are the ones who must change, and no such expectations are on conservatives.

    Yes, the liberals must change. The conservatives already did.

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  107. An Interested Party says:

    The conservatives already did.

    How’s that?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  108. Davebo says:

    @James Pearce:

    Black turn-out dropped this year. Maybe they were voting but with their feet?

    Or maybe believing a ridiculous Census report showing that 65% of white Americans voted in 2016 and only 59% of black Americans did makes one look like a gullible fool.

    That is, if you actually believe we had 65% white voter turnout in 2016. If not, you’re just a tool.

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  109. george says:

    @michael reynolds:

    The 3% of the population who changed their vote from Obama to Trump almost certainly did so out of cultural/racial panic. The other 97% are just voting team, and will always vote team no matter who runs. Most of Trump’s voters don’t know or care anything about him except that he plays on their team, the Republicans. There’s maybe five million voters who care about politics in the country, who could say what the issues are, who post on internet forums and go to demonstrations and rallies. The rest just pay attention for a few minutes on voting day, make sure they picked the home team, then go back to their lives.

    Which is why the target for 2018 and 2020 has to be the 40+% who never bother to vote at all. Getting even 10% of those would be a huge land slide, and most of them have no strong feelings about any of the issues (they care so little they can’t even be bothered to register or vote).

    If this was marketing, everyone would be asking how to tap into that huge potential market, instead of how to steal a few percent of mainly strongly committed voters from the other side.

    Its like trying to convert a Dallas Cowboy’s fan to the Patriot’s side; its not going to happen, no matter how much better the Pats are right now. Easier to just get a new fan with no loyalties. And yes, I know everyone’s loyalties should be to the country, not to the party; unfortunately it just doesn’t work that way.

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  110. DrDaveT says:

    @James Pearce:

    Yes, the liberals must change. The conservatives already did.

    For the 47th time, we ask — what specific change are you advising the liberals to make?

    The conservatives decided to go post-truth and double down on the alternative facts, building a disinformation media infrastructure in support of that. Liberals aren’t going to do that, and shouldn’t.

    So what should they do?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  111. Kylopod says:

    @James Pearce:

    Yes, but put like this you’re skewing things just a little. GA has over 3 million black people. If 89% of them voted for Hillary, she would easily have won.

    I got my data from CNN’s exit polls. They didn’t reveal turnout numbers, but they did reveal each group’s share of the vote, which was quite similar to their proportions in the population (30% black, 60% white).

    I actually wanted to use Mississippi, the state with the largest percentage of blacks. But CNN didn’t feature data for this state, perhaps because it only deals with swing states, a category it apparently puts Georgia in (Trump won the state only by 5 percentage points). It is certainly a potential pickup state for Dems, and the large black population is a big part of the reason–but it’s definitely stymied by the strong white support for the GOP.

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  112. al-Ameda says:

    @James Pearce:

    Yes, the liberals must change. The conservatives already did.

    Well, change for change sake is is a quantity not quality proposition.

    I can think of few changes that current conservatives have morphed-to that I find attractive. When I think of issues concerning the environment, education, macroeconomics, international trade, healthcare, bio-technology, women’s reproductive rights, and more, I am hard pressed to name positions that conservatives have staked out that I find appealing..

    Can you name a few?

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  113. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @James Pearce:

    If you were the first baby born during the baby boom, let’s say late 45, early 46, you would have been 19-20 years old in 1964. How attached would you be, really, to the “old order” and how mad would you be if it was dismantled?

    I confess that I fit the demographic you laid out. I don’t think I was consciously attached I was to an “old order”, but I do recall the horror I felt when, at the age of 17 I saw a white Boston cop beating a 9 year old black child’s face with a baton.

    That scene angered me, and still does.

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  114. de stijl says:

    Modern day American politics is rarely about policy*.

    Voting behavior almost never is.

    Now that ideological sorting is complete, comparisons to past behaviors of parties, politicians, and voters are spurious at best. 2017 Ds and Rs are not applicable to pre-1965 (or pre-1980) patterns or behaviors. Once we hit the Gingrich era, any comparisons are utterly inapplicable.

    Instead, it’s now a strange mixture of class and geography and color and psychology and sociology and language. Mostly, it’s about team or perceived tribe. Basic in-goup / out-group behavior.

    The team you think you belong to and then, the other guys – literally in many cases “The Other.”

    What we often demonstrate with our voting is we what we want from politicians is the feeling that they want to screw or silence (or eliminate) The Other.

    To some degree the Chief of the tribe matters, but the psychological situation would be very dire indeed if one switched tribes entirely. A “bad” Chief causes internal dissent (both meanings of “internal” meant here), but public dissent is a big step that may lead to ostracization or exile.

    Switching tribes is a big damn deal.

    * Health Care is a counter-example to a small extent. All Americans dislike R alternatives to the ACA, but R voters will not punish R politicians for this in 2018. Afterall, those R politicians are doing their duty – punishing Ds and the people who vote for Ds. The policy they propose is unpopular, even amongst them, but the intent is on-point.

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  115. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    Anyone under 50 was born into a post-CRA world. Anyone under 60 only has dim childhood memories of a segregated America, and a lifetime of experience in the desegregated one.

    That very much depends on where you lived. I’m under 50 and I clearly remember my senior class having to approach 3 different restaurants to have a class dinner because there was one African American in our class of about 30 students. Segregation wasn’t legal in the 1980s, but it was still de facto in place in much of the deep south. This was BTW, in Birmingham AL, which, while it has a storied racial past was by that point the most progressive part of the state outside of NASA enclaves in Huntsville.
    People were still up in arms about busing in minority students when I was in high school.
    I was back for a Summer in the late 90s after graduating college and after a night out heard an off duty cop regaling a small crowd about how he and his cop buddies beat an uppity NAACP rep with hoses to scare him out of town. People smiled and nodded their heads as he went on.
    This is all typical.
    I still go back home every few years and get to hear from uncles about how they don’t have a problem with black folk, it’s just the ni&&ers that are the problem with fox newsa constant hum in the background.
    The racial resentments over lost place (since you don’t like the term privilege) are still strong. You are kidding yourself if you think this isn’t so.

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  116. Kylopod says:

    @Matt: @gVOR08: My ideas on this were shaped by reading a book from about 10 years ago with an impressively long title, Geoffrey Nunberg’s Talking Right: How Conservatives Turned Liberalism into a Tax-Raising, Latte-Drinking, Sushi-Eating, Volvo-Driving, New York Times-Reading, Body-Piercing, Hollywood-Loving, Left-Wing Freak Show.

    A word about Nunberg. He’s a linguist who has done a regular commentary piece about language and culture on NPR’s Fresh Air for decades. I first came upon his writings in his 2001 book The Way We Talk Now, which consisted mostly of his collected NPR pieces transcribed into essays. The book stayed mostly out of politics, and when it did comment on politics it was mostly from a nonpartisan, analytic perspective (though Nunberg occasionally dropped hints of his lefty orientation). There was, however, one politics-related anecdote in the book I found fascinating which spoke heavily to the communication problems the Democratic Party has suffered from for a long time. Reviewing the 1996 GOP Convention, Nunberg took the combined speeches of the first two nights and entered them into a summarizing software. What the software came up with was surprisingly coherent, even a bit eloquent:

    We are the Republican Party–a big, broad, diverse, and inclusive party, with a commonsense agenda and a better man for a better America, Bob Dole. We need a leader we can trust. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen, for being part of this quest in working with us to restore the American dream. The commonsense Republican proposals are the first step in restoring the American dream because Republicans care about America. But there is no greater dream than the dreams parents have for their children to be happy and to share God’s blessings.

    Nunberg then tried the same thing with the combined speeches of the first two nights of the Democratic Convention. This time, however, the software spit out, according to Nunberg, “pure word salad.”

    Nunberg’s 2006 book, containing an extensive discussion of the Democratic communication problem, was published not long before the party’s landslide victories in 2006 and 2008. Whether Democratic operatives read the book and took any of the advice in it, I don’t know. But its central thesis is more subtle than the common criticism that Democratic rhetoric doesn’t fit well on a bumper sticker, and as far as I’ve seen, it remains largely unaddressed to this day. Here is the summary of the book’s thesis on Wikipedia (which, I should mention, I wrote, with only a couple of minor edits from later users):

    Earlier commentators have attributed this failure to such matters as weak slogans. Nunberg argues that the problem runs much deeper, in that the entire political discourse in the United States today has been shaped heavily by conservatives. According to Nunberg, ordinary words like values, freedom, patriotism, and indeed liberal itself have acquired connotations that conservatives favor and that even allegedly liberal newspapers like The New York Times and The Washington Post take for granted. Nunberg contends that conservatives have used these terms to paint a picture of elite liberals out of touch with the values of mainstream, middle-class Americans. This stereotype, which Nunberg considers inaccurate, is nonetheless so firmly entrenched in popular consciousness that Republicans need only mention a word like elite to conjure up the image of a stuffy, out-of-touch liberal.

    Democratic politicians have tried to reclaim some of these terms, such as when presidential candidate John Kerry styled his 2004 campaign “a celebration of American values.” But such efforts are ineffective, Nunberg argues, because they do little to unhinge the powerful quasi-populist narrative that conservatives have developed over several decades. Nunberg calls on Democrats to create an equally powerful (but, in their view, more truthful) narrative of their own through which they can weave together the many issues of advantage to them.

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  117. Kylopod says:

    @John430:

    You seem to think that illegal immigrants are voters.

    No, I don’t happen to think that, and there is absolutely nothing in my comment that would remotely lead anyone with even minimal reading comprehension skills to conclude that that’s what I believe. But thanks for the lame rejoinder, anyway. Your inability to effectively defend your position against criticism is duly noted.

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  118. de stijl says:

    Trump is the walking definition of a megalomaniac.

    Your standard issue sociopath businessman who believes and acts as if he has perceived himself as successful he is therefore successful.

    Infallible. Unstoppable. Irrefutable. Early “success” is the worst teacher.

    Ordinarily, no big deal, but being President sharpens the situation.

    Roy Cohn was his mentor.

    There is no path that will cure him. He is stricken. He will remain unfit and unprepared and unaware.

    We just have to survive him.

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  119. James Pearce says:

    @Davebo:

    Or maybe believing a ridiculous Census report showing that 65% of white Americans voted in 2016 and only 59% of black Americans did makes one look like a gullible fool.

    Do you have any reason, aside from suspicion, not to believe it?

    @DrDaveT:

    what specific change are you advising the liberals to make?

    Remove head from ass and put it on a swivel. I know that’s not very helpful, but seriously… Prioritize. Tolerate. Endure.

    Am I the only one who sees the direct line connecting the leftist reaction to Ann Coulter speeches and the Trump Administration shutting off cameras during White House press briefings? Shut it down? No, turn on the frigging lights.

    @Kylopod:

    I got my data from CNN’s exit polls.

    No quibble with your data, just the math. It’s “not 80-90% of blacks voted for Democrats.” It’s “65% of blacks are registered voters, and 55% of them voted in 2016, and ’80-90%’ of them voted for Democrats.” In the end, you come out with numbers showing only a third of the black population in America actively supports Democrats.

    I’m wondering what accounts for the other 2/3s. Many of them, let’s estimate 25%, are under voting age. That leaves 15 million people who could theoretically vote for Democrats…but don’t.

    Is it all voter suppression?

    @Grewgills:

    People were still up in arms about busing in minority students when I was in high school.

    And when I was in high school, we had Rodney King, the riots, Orenthal James Simpson. I’m very well aware that racial resentment is endemic in this country, but I’m trying to clearly state that the left has it too, to their detriment.

    The “mad about loss of white privilege” argument is true in the same way a horoscope is true. It applies to someone, somewhere. But it does not describe the overall phenomenon of what’s going on. I am not kidding myself on this one.

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  120. DrDaveT says:

    @James Pearce:

    I know that’s not very helpful,

    I suppose that’s a start, in the “12 step program” sense…

    but seriously… Prioritize. Tolerate. Endure.

    No, you’re going to have to do better than that. Seriously.

    Which specific priorities are wrong? What should rank higher?

    What should be tolerated? I will assume you don’t mean “stop trying to fix the things that are broken”, so what the hell do you mean?

    Endure? Again, I will assume you don’t mean “give up and just let America suffer for the indefinite future”, but I sure can’t figure out what you do mean from anything you’ve said, here or elsewhere. You portray yourself as someone complaining about tactics, rather than goals, but you have no actual tactics to propose.

    At a certain point, “You’re doing it all wrong!” loses all credibility if you can’t come up with even a single concrete instance of what would be the right way to do it.

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  121. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @James Pearce: So, you grew up in a complete vacuum where you never heard the opinions of you parents, their friends, people being interviewed on the news, teachers, strangers, or anyone else and/or you charted your life completely independent of all those outside influences? REALLY?

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  122. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @James Pearce:

    Is it all voter suppression?

    It doesn’t need to be all voter suppression. As many–including you IIRC–have noted the difference in key states was very small–as little as 30,000 votes in some cases. You really only need a little voter suppression to accomplish great things. But hyperbolize on, by all means.

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  123. Kylopod says:

    @James Pearce:

    No quibble with your data, just the math. It’s “not 80-90% of blacks voted for Democrats.” It’s “65% of blacks are registered voters, and 55% of them voted in 2016, and ’80-90%’ of them voted for Democrats.” In the end, you come out with numbers showing only a third of the black population in America actively supports Democrats.

    First of all, it’s standard shorthand when discussing voter demographics to say such and such percentage of such and such group voted this way, even when you’re talking only about those who voted, not the entire population. I doubt anyone was confused by what I wrote.

    Second, the important point here is that the percentage of Georgia voters who were black was almost identical to their percentage in the Georgia populace–30%. Thus, blacks were not underrepresented in the Georgia vote. Neither were whites, for that matter. The difference is that, while blacks in the state voted for Hillary in roughly the same percentage as the nation as a whole (89%), whites in Georgia voted for Trump by vastly higher percentages than nationwide (75%, as opposed to 57%). That is your answer, right there. When you have an electorate this racially polarized, it’s hardly surprising that the much larger group wins.

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  124. george says:

    @Neil Hudelson:

    The average Trump voter had a household income of $70,000 and lived in the suburbs.

    Unfortunately that doesn’t mean much without some information on the frequency distribution. At an absolute minimum, the standard deviation is needed. If the distribution is bipolar, for instance, that would mean a lot of rich and a lot of very poor people vote for Trump. If the standard deviation is say $40,000 it would also mean a lot of poor people voted for Trump. The average of a guy earning $70 million and 1000 people earning nothing is 70K.

    Why is that kind of information never given along with the average? My guess is that its a Gaussian distribution with a small (say 10K) standard deviation, but that’s just a guess. The average itself tells us almost nothing. Saying the average is $70K is never going to change anyone’s mind, because its a meaningless number by itself. And I say that as someone who thinks Trump is a disaster.

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  125. John430 says:

    @Kylopod: Then why do you pander to that issue if not to garner their support? Do you have trouble with understanding what illegal means?

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  126. Kylopod says:

    @John430:

    Then why do you pander to that issue if not to garner their support?

    What the hell…? You think I’m a politician or something? I base my views first and foremost on what I believe is right, not on what I believe will garner the most votes. Is that such a radical idea?

    But as long as you’re obsessing on the political calculus, did it not ever occur to you that many illegal immigrants have relatives who are US citizens and can vote?

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  127. James Pearce says:

    @DrDaveT:

    You portray yourself as someone complaining about tactics, rather than goals, but you have no actual tactics to propose.

    Well, you got me there, DrDaveT. What would you like to hear? “Subscribe to the NYT?” “Call your Congressman?” That’s the kind of stuff I feel like I’d have to offer, because “Stop denigrating white people” and “Move to Kansas” are too much to ask.

    @Just ‘nutha ig’nint cracker:

    So, you grew up in a complete vacuum where you never heard the opinions of you parents

    Missing the point…

    @Kylopod:

    I doubt anyone was confused by what I wrote.

    No offense, but a lot of people are confused about that means. They see “80-90% of black people voted for Hillary” and they think it means “80-90% of black people support Democrats.” From this error, they proceed onto other things, like “We can’t make the left less anti-white; we’ll lose the support of our minorities!”

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  128. Monala says:

    @george: A majority of voters with incomes under $50,000 voted for Hilary Clinton. Source

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  129. Monala says:

    @James Pearce:

    The Democrats are not “anti-white” and I doubt you have ever heard any Democrat say, “We can’t make the left less anti-white; we’ll lose the support of our minorities!”

    What you probably have heard them say is that Democrats shouldn’t throw minorities under the bus or ignore issues that affect them in order to chase after white voters. Unless you think that, for example, opposing police brutality is anti-white, or supporting a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants is anti-white, or not labeling Mexicans as rapists and African-Americans as thugs is anti-white.

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  130. george says:

    @Monala:

    Sure, but that wasn’t my point. I’m wondering why anyone gives the average without any information of the distribution. Its not only in politics, its all over the place, and its almost always meaningless. At an absolute minimum you need a standard deviation.

    I’m not arguing that Trump got the majority of poor voters (you’ll note I said my guess was that he didn’t, as I guessed a standard deviation of 10K), I’m arguing that giving a single, stand alone average is basically meaningless in something like this (or in fact, in almost anything).

    The graph your source supplied is better; it states Trump got 41% of the under $30K voters, which is 10% less than Clinton got. Note that means that both Clinton and Trump got millions of votes from families earning less than $30K, with Clinton getting more … something the $70K number can’t give any feel for.

    People seem to react to an average of $70K per family as meaning every family is close to that average. A distribution (or standard deviation) shows how accurate (or in this case, inaccurate) that is.

    And given that these elections are decided by 2-3% percent, how those votes are distributed becomes important. For instance, if even two thirds of the under $30K voters had gone for Clinton, instead of half, she’d have won the electoral college and be President. Two fifths of the poorest voted for Trump (only God knows why) – that’s very different than saying only the middle class and rich voted for him. And then the analysis is how to change that for 2018 and 2020.

    In engineering, the data behind a failure is seen as your means to make sure the next bridge doesn’t collapse. You don’t spin doctor data in engineering (not if you want buildings to stand up), you use it to change your procedures/materials/work crews to achieve better results.

    The 2016 election is over, and we lost. Its like a collapsed bridge, we can’t go back in time and change that. But we’re spending more time spin doctoring the loss than analyzing it honestly to see what we need to do differently. From an engineering perspective that’s simply insane.

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  131. Monala says:

    @george:

    Two fifths of the poorest voted for Trump (only God knows why) – that’s very different than saying only the middle class and rich voted for him. And then the analysis is how to change that for 2018 and 2020.

    The reason this is important is that it is pushback against the narrative that Trump’s voters were economically distressed, and opposed Democratic elitists who were making their lives worse. Yes, some of Trump’s voters were – but far more of them were not, and far more of actually economically distressed voters voted for Clinton. (I’ll have to look for it, but I saw a different survey in which voters who said that economic issues were most important, rather than cultural touchstones, were far more likely to support Clinton). If we are to change things for 2018 and 2020, we have to pushback against false narratives (e.g., Democrats are elitists who don’t care about the common person).

    As an example, one idea I’ve seen in many places is that part of the reason why SSM marriage support grew is that they were able to reclaim a narrative – instead of being the deviants opposed by family values conservatives, SSM supporters were the ones promoting stable family values.

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  132. John430 says:

    “…we have to pushback against false narratives (e.g., Democrats are elitists who don’t care about the common person)”.

    False narrative, my eye. Demo-socialists want the proletariat to accept government programs. Even if they have to punish them to get them to accept. It’s for their own good y’know. LOL!

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  133. al-Alameda says:

    @John430:

    False narrative, my eye. Demo-socialists want the proletariat to accept government programs. Even if they have to punish them to get them to accept. It’s for their own good y’know. LOL!

    Thank you, Comrade John

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  134. DrDaveT says:

    @John430:

    Demo-socialists want the proletariat to accept government programs. Even if they have to punish them to get them to accept. It’s for their own good y’know. LOL!

    And there you have it, in a nutshell: the irreconcilable difference. John430 denies the possibility that requiring vaccinations, forbidding water pollution, requiring people to send their kids to school, forbidding dumping raw sewage in the street, etc. can possibly make everyone better off. Or, possibly, that even if it makes everyone better off it’s still evil because Freedum!

    Yes, John, I want the proletariat — and the elite — and you — to accept government programs that make our society as a whole more healthy, more productive, more happy, more free. Real freedom requires choices, and the choices are richer in the future when the people do these things for themselves through their government.

    Are you really advocating against mandatory schooling? Public sanitation laws? If not, how do you decide where to draw the line and assert that freedom today is more important than a better tomorrow?

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  135. Kylopod says:

    @Monala:

    one idea I’ve seen in many places is that part of the reason why SSM marriage support grew is that they were able to reclaim a narrative – instead of being the deviants opposed by family values conservatives, SSM supporters were the ones promoting stable family values.

    Maybe. Personally I’m skeptical that this has much to do with why SSM succeeded. As I explained earlier, people are very set in their paradigms, and the picture of Republicans as the “pro-family” party is hard to dislodge, no matter how many p*ssy-grabbers they elect. “Pro-family” comes to signify opposing gay relationships and really not much else, because people hear the word and they absorb the connotations that are drilled into us through years and years of repetition. So when John Kerry or other Dems start preaching about “family values,” it ends up sounding to a lot of people sort of like white rappers, people attempting to appropriate a language and style they don’t understand. Even though various pundits and intellectuals have made a case for SSM using traditionalist arguments about family, these sorts of arguments have tended to remain esoteric in the larger culture.

    I prefer Jonathan Chait’s explanation for why SSM succeeded. In his words, it was because the opponents had “no arguments.”

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  136. george says:

    @Monala:

    The reason this is important is that it is pushback against the narrative that Trump’s voters were economically distressed, and opposed Democratic elitists who were making their lives worse. Yes, some of Trump’s voters were – but far more of them were not, and far more of actually economically distressed voters voted for Clinton.

    I’m missing something. If some of Trump’s voters were economically distressed (41% of the poorest group were voting for Trump), then its simply wrong to say that his voters weren’t economically distressed. You seem to be treating it as a binary proposition: either his voters were economically distressed or they weren’t. But that simply doesn’t describe the situation. His voters aren’t one cohesive block who share their wealth among themselves evenly. Some of his voters are rich, most are middle class, some are poor. Meaning most aren’t economically distressed, but some clearly are.

    To me it reads like a supplier of screws saying that if most of the bolts in a bridge’s support held, then you can’t say their bolts failed because on average they held. Its simply a misuse, and a particularly unhelpful and misleading one, to use the average behavior in these kinds of situations as a proxy for each individuals behavior.

    And again, this (at least for me) isn’t much about Trump … he’s a disaster, and I think his tenure is thankfully coming apart at the seams. Its about how we use statistics – no wonder so little of the public trusts them, given that kind of reporting. When a number like an average family income of $70K is given, some indication of distribution has to be given with it or its simply meaningless.

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  137. Monala says:

    @george: you’re missing my point, which is about who supported Democrats. The prevailing narrative is, “the economically distressed voted for Trump, while coastal elites voted for Clinton.” I’m saying that the economically distressed were more likely to vote for Clinton, and many Trump voters are not economically distressed, and are in fact, themselves elites.

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  138. James Pearce says:

    @Monala:

    What you probably have heard them say is that Democrats shouldn’t throw minorities under the bus or ignore issues that affect them in order to chase after white voters.

    And yet, to win an election, they have no choice but to chase after white voters. And hey, I get it….they’d rather be pure and living in Trumpistan than do anything to appeal to the dreaded white people of this country.

    And that’s why I’ve departed so much from the movement. I have different priorities.

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  139. george says:

    @Monala:

    If you’re arguing that no one should be saying “THE economically distressed voted for Trump”, then I’m in complete agreement. In fact, that statement would be wrong if even one economically distressed voted for someone other than Trump (and in fact, 51% of them voted for Clinton, and only 41% of them for Trump.

    However, the argument I’ve seen is that some of those who voted for Trump were economically distressed, and that seems to be a true statement.

    There’s this odd tendency to lump huge groups of people (as in tens of millions of them) into a single category and speak as if they acted as a unit, each and every one of which voting the way they voted for the same reason. No engineer would do that even with simple mechanical systems, so why in the world is it being done with humans, who are trillions of times more complicated than our most complicated mechanical systems?

    Computers fail for different reasons. People vote for different reasons. Speaking of either as a unity is simply nonsense.

    And the reason I care is that the bridge has collapsed (Trump the disaster has occurred). Lets honestly analyse what can be done to avoid repetition. And that means honestly looking at both comfortable and uncomfortable factors, without trying to spin them into something that makes us look better.

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  140. Monala says:

    @James Pearce: @James Pearce: Let’s do this again:

    What you probably have heard them say is that Democrats shouldn’t throw minorities under the bus or ignore issues that affect them in order to chase after white voters.

    The relevant part is not, “in order to chase after white voters.” I am in agreement with you – we need to try to win more white voters. I am also in agreement with you (and in fact was, in a prior thread) that making more race-neutral arguments (economics, etc.) are a good thing, and that some white Trump voters might be winnable with that.

    The relevant point is “don’t throw minorities under the bus or ignore issues that affect them.” Democrats should continue to care about issues like police brutality, immigration, and civil rights, even if that means that some white voters will refuse to vote for Democrats even if they agree with them on other issues such as the economy.

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  141. James Pearce says:

    @Monala:

    The relevant point is “don’t throw minorities under the bus or ignore issues that affect them.”

    What issues affect minorities but not white people?

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  142. Monala says:

    @James Pearce: None, really, but the ones I named:

    issues like police brutality, immigration, and civil rights

    are often perceived as only affecting people of color. Why else would someone like you consider these issues “anti-white”?

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  143. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    What issues affect minorities but not white people?

    Systemic racism

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  144. James Pearce says:

    @Monala:

    Why else would someone like you consider these issues “anti-white”?

    I don’t consider those issues anti-white, either. I’ve actually been pretty obnoxious arguing that police brutality, specifically, is a problem in the white community too, but I keep getting shouted down on that. “What part of proportional do you not understand?” they say, as if what we’re trying to do is make police brutality more “proportional” instead of less common.

    The “anti-white” stuff is cultural, and it is real.

    @Grewgills:

    Systemic racism

    White people are not unaffected by systemic racism.

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  145. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    White people are not unaffected by systemic racism.

    Explain how white people are negatively impacted by systemic racism.

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  146. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    Explain how white people are negatively impacted by systemic racism.

    Seriously?

    Racism poisons everything, dude. Everything.

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