extinguishing the bern

I’m not a great election forecaster. Or even a good one. But that never stopped me before and I’m going out there again: Bernie doesn’t stand a chance.

There…I said it.

As I’ve written before, I’m pulling for an outsider win this time. Outsiders give us the best possible result we can hope for in our current dysfunctional federal government: glorious gridlock. For the millennials following along, here is exhibit one: the Carter Administration.

I admit it: gridlock isn’t really that glorious. It only seems glorious juxtaposed to Congress unleashed. I’m firmly in the camp preferring nothing over misguided half-measures like the Affordable Care Act. That’s Obamacare for the baby boomers following along.

But my expectations are getting ahead of reality and I must throw cold water on myself. The Democratic machine is powering up and while they can’t quite dictate a Hillary victory, a $4.5 Million spending spree and a 394 Superdelegate head start gets close.

Fighting Two-party Hall on the inside is tough.

The ugly truth is that $4.5 Million is just the start as the power elite pullsil_570xn-844756496_76kb out the stops. So far, The Bern has 44 Superdelegates. How many of the remaining 274 do you think he will get. Hint: not many.

As Curmudgeonly as I am about our current state of political affairs, I do see glimmers of hope. My sense is that the populist trend is real. After a lifetime of political pendulum swings, demographics are beginning to assert their actuarially inevitable tidal forces. 2020 could be a whole new political world.

Think Latinos and Millennials.

Both Latinos and Millennials are less deferential to the past than the Old White People that will be dying in the next four years. Certainly less deferential than my generation was when we were the whippersnappers.

Working in Software Engineering, I’m around a disproportionate number of Millennials for an Old White Curmudgeon, and I can attest, they have completely different life experiences and the progressive attitudes that are a natural result. My recent teaching foray in a very conservative high school confirms that we are seeing a very broad shift across diverse socio-economic classes on a wide range of political and social issues.

Four more years of Old White People dying. Four more years of millennials attaining voting age.

This is big.

If you doubt the progressive groundswell consider the data coming out of Iowa and New Hampshire. I won’t bore you rehashing the numbers—there are plenty of sources for you if you want to dig.

But for those who dig, a few things become clear. It is clear that “socialism” is not a dirty word for those who learned of the Cold War in history books and not newspapers. It is clear that “social justice” resonates with the working poor. It is increasingly clear that it also resonates with those middle class at risk of joining the ranks of the working poor.

2016 is not, however, the dawn of a new progressive age. The political elite will not go down easily. The headlines deceive: Hillary is overwhelmingly ahead in the delegate count. And will stay that way.

It is exceedingly hard to fight Two-party Hall.

As for the Bern? He is Bernt Toast.

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12 thoughts on “extinguishing the bern”

  1. I really have started to doubt that $ currently plays a crucial role in our elections. We don’t seem to get a FoxNews GOP candidate every year. Jeb! has the $, and voters are not following like lemmings. The superdelegate thing is definitely the legacy issue that needs to go. I still think Citizens United, money equals free speech, elected in a non-stop dialing for campaign $ are all terrible. I just don’t see the Karl Rove’s having much success, or the Koch brothers, etc. That is an unusual and rare observation by someone of my ideological views. I think Bernie is right that the game is rigged, but I disagree with him and Curm that is primarily because of $ in elections or political parties. I think it is rigged because the natural path of the economy with globalization and business consolidation is the distribution of wealth to fewer and fewer at the top (pyramid owners in my other post). Yes, these few at the top throw $ at politicians to maintain their gatekeeper status, but the truth is politicians wouldn’t have a clue how to assist or block this economic march. As an example, early in globalization a new plot twist was introduced. Companies started outsourcing labor and production from the US, and turned right around and sold those products back to the US. That is totally different than building a plant in China and then selling those products in China. I heard many debates on this with economists and college professors at the time, and I concluded this was new, the economic theories and textbooks didn’t cover this. If true, you certainly can assume your presidents and senators have no real answers to these changes. Tax cuts ain’t going to fix it…and to be honest, perhaps nothing can. And if politicians can’t help with that, good luck with them helping with that world previewed by the video posted earlier “Humans need not apply”.

    The power of $ and parties seem to be vastly diminished in this election, regardless of future demographic change. Trump seems an expensive price to pay, but hard to argue the Republicans are not currently burning down their party THIS election. I don’t think we are doing that in the Dem side because most of us like our party.

    On the demographic change coming, I predict the Presidency and the Senate will permanently change first, and the House will lag behind. I think gerrymandering and the rural vote will impede progress for a long time.

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    1. I definitely think the power of money in campaigns is diminishing, but it is far from over. The most significant impact that banker bucks and the Koch brother have is in funding primaries against incumbents that don’t tow the line. But it is still a force in elections…for now.

      We will know after Super Tuesday whether the GOP will self-destruct or not. If Trump and Cruz are still the front runners, it will be hard to see any other result.

      As I sit hear now, the probability of a Trump/Hillary/Bloomberg race is much higher than I dreamed even when I posted about that. I REALLY hope that happens. That will be amazingly fun. Still don’t know whether I’d vote for Bloomberg or not.

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      1. “Trump/Hillary/Bloomberg”

        Think you said Trump/Sanders/Bloomberg, but result will be the same… President Trump

        I think Trump will win the GOP primary and lose to Hillary in the general without 3rd party nominee, but I throw out the following general election in the hope of the world NOT ENDING:

        General election:
        Rubio
        Nikki Haley

        vs

        Hillary
        Elizabeth Warren

        We (Dems) love Elizabeth, Hillary not so much. For me… the perfect scenario would be Hillary for one term, followed by Warren for two terms. Give Warren a full term to ramp up on foreign policy.

        I think Rubio is a nutcase with the “take America back” bs… but compared to Trump and Cruz you have to hope for something else. The US likes “pretty” candidates, so those two should have a shot. They would run as the “young and the future” and the Dems would run as “New Deal #2 once Hillary leaves after one term”.

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  2. Curm just got his “glorious deadlock”. GOP is about to leave the Supreme Court with a vacancy for 1 year, probably more likely 18 months. One party problem is about to become a reality tv show.

    Watched the GOP food fight debate last night. I am so impressed with Jeb I am thinking of changing my handle to:

    Old Friend!

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    1. I don’t think people will let Congress get away without nominating Scalia’s replacement. That could be just the thing to motivate people to vote anti-incumbent.

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      1. The Republicans got Bush in the White House with that 5-4 vote. They will do anything to keep it. You would think they would be smart enough to not to announce “Obama should not fulfill his constitutional obligation of nominating”, but then it’s the same McConnell that publicly announced his main job was to make Obama a one term president. McConnell would be a good guy to play poker with.

        Funny thing about that 5-4 Bush vote. It probably gave them Obama. Without Bush, probably no Iraq war. No Iraq war, most likely no Obama, no ISIS. No Obama, no Trump. Karma is a Mitch.

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    2. I am going to work on a post about the Scalia replacement. Wanted to get the South Carolina musings out while it was still relevant.

      I think that if the GOP doesn’t moderate it its tone, it will risk bearing the obstructionist label alone. Several senators have recently said that they will wait to see who the appointment is before they decide to be uncooperative. This is of course just a trial balloon, but it hints at some nervousness.

      They should be nervous. If Trump or Cruz gets the nomination, a lot of GOP Congress Critters are going down.

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      1. Amateur hour politics to just announce the way McConnell did. It would be assumed that they would try and run out the clock, but McConnell is bad at his job.

        If this election goes to the Supreme Court, we get a 4-4 vote.

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  3. Who is going to break it to those millennials they are too late? Pyramid capitalism won in 1981, and has never looked back. That bridge repair and safety-net $ has padded the accounts of the Waltons, Koch brothers, Langone, Wall Street … ever since… call it a malinvestment of the private sector. The problem isn’t that innovators are rewarded, it’s the percent of the reward and those rewarded. As an added bonus, the owners of these pyramids get more say about your government, and almost total say about new products. Try and get a new product in Walmart or Home Depot. A few billionaires legacy box stores will decide 1) if it makes it to the shelves 2) where you have to manufacture it…China 3) what your margins will be. Creative destruction really isn’t the free market deciding… it’s a billionaire’s legacy big box retailer decision. Of course Obamacare was a
    half-measure… our society (half of it) is nowhere close to being able to take the measures necessary to control costs. Across the country surgeons, big pharma and big insurance executives, medical malpractice lawyers are teeing off at the country clubs laughing their asses of that the we are arguing about the number of political parties and “limited government”. BTW…your chance to argue your medical malpractice case before a judge or jury will be determined by a law firm deciding if there is enough $ in it for them…think of them as a pre-jury. I guess those giant law firms are saving us all health care costs by throwing out the small fish. I bet the folks at Wall Street make donations so it’s the bright shiny object for the lemmings, distracting them so their pockets can be picked.

    You really want to talk about health care cost half measures? This one deserves it’s own paragraph. This will be blunt…even by my standards. You will never control costs until we make it legal, and assistance provided for individuals to choose death. I won’t even argue about the immorality and sheer horror of walking through a nursing home where we house those who left us a long time ago. We would never treat our pets this way. Why with our parents, elderly? No interest in a religious discussion, simply saying without addressing this issue it’s really a waste of time to debate costs. Note: that is not a Sarah Palin death panel. It is the opposite, it’s providing the individual with the right to a legal death with dignity…i.e. MORE liberty. GOP says they can solve this by “selling insurance across state borders”. Every time I hear that, I picture those guys at the country club high-fiving….cigars lit, life is good.

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