Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Alligators in charge of the swamp - Life in the time of Trump

Welcome to our swamp, citizens! We have it fully stocked with gators, just waiting to thrash their tails and sharpen their teeth. This swamp is a particularly nice one, with a whole new crew of critters moving in. Here are some of the Swamp Monster's Cabinet picks:

Secretary of Corporations, formerly Department of State  – Rex Tillerson, former head of Exxon Mobil, who was overheard speaking into a cell phone as he boarded the Trump Express for Russia, "I'm checking on my holdings there, Vlad. Chill the vodka."


Secretary of Public Lands Mining and Drilling, formerly the Dept. of the Interior - Ryan Zinke, former Navy Seal, who wants to keep those contracts in Donald Trump’s, eh, the public’s, hands.

Department of Nuclear Proliferation, formerly Department of Energy – Rick Perry, former Governor of Texas who has stated he wants to get rid of this department altogether. “Energy smenergy” said Perry. “We should sell those nukes to the highest bidder, now.”


Department of Worker Management, formerly Department of Labor – Andrew Puzder, fast food CEO. Says Mr. Puzder, “This is a great opportunity to put a stop to higher wages and those pesky unions, so the great unwashed can enjoy a cheap Hardee’s roast beef sandwich, while I get richer, and can make more donations to Trump, as God meant things to be.”  

NBA, formerly SBA – Linda McMahon of World Wrestling Entertainment, who said, “What do you mean it’s not about basketball? Who wants to watch small businesses on TV?”

Department of Fossil Fuels, formerly Environmental Protection Agency – Scott Pruitt – former Oklahoma Attorney General, who says, “Drill baby drill, get every last drop out of the ground. Climate change is just a hoax by those tree hugging, polar bear loving, organic foods eating liberals. Be a man and eat smog.”  


Show me the Money Department, formerly Department of the Treasury – Steve Mnuchin former Goldman Sachs executive, who loves him some Hollywood movies. “Get your hands off my cash,” said Mnuchin, when asked how he’d advise the government in matters of money.

Department of Privatize This, formerly Health and Human Services – Tom Price, leader of the opposition to the Affordable care Act, which he called “a commie plot to let poor sick people off the hook, and impoverish insurance companies. That’s just wrong,” when asked his opinion of Obama’s signature health policy.

Department of Charter This! formerly Department of education – Betsy DeVoss, charter school advocate who says kids appreciate education more when they have to pay for it, instead of us paying for those damn teachers unions always wanting better pay at the expense of administrators.


Secretary of Homelessness and Blight, formerly Secretary of Housing and Urban Development – Ben Carson, neurosurgeon and former candidate for President.  Mr. Carson said, “I think Section 8 is a part of the brain we can just cut out because it doesn’t fit anymore. It’s not brain surgery. Poor people just cost money. If you can’t afford a house, live in a box; that's why God made cardboard.”


CIA director, formerly CIA Director – Mike Pompeo, former Army officer, who said, “Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi!” 


Border Wall Department, formerly Attorney General – Jeff sessions. “Get them wetbacks out of here!” said Mr. Sessions, wielding a Confederate saber which he rattled meaningfully.

Court Jestor, formerly Chief of Staff – Rience Priebus, GOP stooge in charge.


Overlord, formerly Chief Strategist – Stephen K. Bannon, Alt-Right News. “What, you never read 1984?”
 

Sunday, December 4, 2016

More on either or

In response to the Bernie bashers on Facebook, reacting to something he wrote back in 1969 in a Montpelier Vermont paper The quote goes thusly:  

"The revolution comes when two strangers smile at each other, when a father refuses to send his child to school because schools destroy children, when a commune is started and people begin to trust each other, when a young man refuses to go to war, and when a girl pushes aside all that her mother has 'taught' her and accepts her boyfriend's love."

These folks took exception to the language, especially girls leaving their mothers to follow their boyfriends, and the fathers taking their kids out of school.

Well, I don't know what the schools in Vermont were like in those days, but I do know about the girls following their boyfriends.

And the "Revolution" we were sure was right around the corner. So I wrote this little piece in response:

"I have to start by telling you I came of age in the sixties. In those days, the days of Vietnam and just post-Selma and the height of the Civil Rights movement. The mantra for those of us in what was known as “the Movement” was “Girls say yes to boys who say no.” Yeah, gross huh? Boys were burning their draft cards, and resisting the war, some going to Canada or to Federal prison. Soldiers with consciences took sanctuary in churches.
 
"That’s how I got involved, in the first sanctuary in 1968, in Arlington St. Church in Boston. I stayed involved with the New England Resistance. The men were in charge. We were the “resister sisters.”

 
"We were the “office chicks.” Then something remarkable happened. We heard about something called Women’s Liberation. We realized that we were just as exploited as factory workers or other women not getting paid for equal work or being harassed on the job. We weren’t housewives, but we got their oppression too. So we rebelled. We started consciousness raising groups. A large group, Bread and Roses, grew up around all those women taking charge of their lives. Men did not like it. They feared it, they didn’t know what to make of newly angry women. Many of the old organizations fell apart. New ones popped up.
Then came Stonewall and the “gay liberation” movement. This was just too much for some, even our enlightened brothers. I was working at a movement paper at the time, one that tried very hardtop be egalitarian with all, men and women alike, and even they were very uncomfortable when I insisted we cover gay rights. 

 
"Yes, identity politics. At the same time, we identified as anti-war, anti-imperialist, and anti-income inequality, although we didn’t call it that at the time; we just thought it was important to understand and to help the “working class.” (And yes, many of the movement people came from privilege; this was Cambridge, teeming with Harvard graduates. As one of the few who actually grew up in a working class family, who had experienced foreclosure, unemployment and a broken family, I often felt out of some of the more abstract discussions people would get into.). We actually believed the Revolution would happen before we all turned thirty. 

 
"So, should I be thrown under the bus for past beliefs and cringeworthy statements? Should all my colleagues from those days? I surely hope not. 

 
"And neither should Bernie. You may not think so, but I believe Bernie gets it, he gets the nexus between so called ”identity politics” and economic politics. That it’s not an either or situation; it’s a both-and. That’s how I see what he has brought to this discussion. And why I was proud to be a delegate for him in Philadelphia. We can all learn from each other; we can all learn from history. And we all, I believe, must stop talking past each other (I know I’m as guilty of it as anyone else), and work together, to defeat Trump and to build the kind of society that serves us all.

 
"Just fyi, context for myself, today, I run campaigns for progressive candidates, mostly Democratic women. We have an excellent win rate. I work with a Women’s Political Action Committee, serve on the California Democratic Party and its Executive Committee and Platform committee. I was a co-founder of our Progressive Caucus in 2005, a caucus which is still going strong. Thanks for listening."


What we ate in the sixties while working for the Revolution:

Dunkin' Donuts and black coffee. And you can still get them both.  (But I recommend better quality baked goods and coffee, unless you are feeling very nostalgic.) 

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Either-Or? Or is it?



Well, it’s been three weeks and the Trumpster in Chief is still the Mad Tweeter in Chief. Are we living in a farce? I could talk about Democratic unity, but it hardly seems anyone cares anymore. Who will be the new DNC chair and will it make any difference? Can the Electors really choose the one who won the popular vote, that’d be Hillary, and change the course of history? No one seriously thinks that’s a possibility.
And what did the Russians really do and what kind of effect did it have on the outcome, if any?

All questions without answers, unless you are a conspiracy theorist and then you know it was all rigged and Bernie would have won if the DNC hadn’t stolen the primary. 

For daring to assert that no one knows if Bernie could have won the general if he had been the nominee, I get called a Hillary troll (I was a Bernie delegate, as my loyal readers know); if I suggest that the Trump team would have buried Bernie in a sea of lies, innuendo, historical revisionism and plain old nasty name calling (Can you just see the tweets? #BolshevikBernie; #PornGate; #DonothingCongress – that would be the kindest one), I get called a fake progressive; sort of like the Doubting Thomas of Biblical times. Tempers are that high. And those are my allies.

The Hillary side is just as bad. Now the great Democratic divide is over “identity politics” versus “progressive economics.” I tell them it’s not an either-or thing. We need to reach out to and offer something to those who are out of work, underemployed, undereducated, fearful and ignorant. Plus we need to stand firm for all minorities, and women, the largest “minority of all (I never have understood how we can be the majority and still the underclass at the same time.) But maybe it is and I don’t get it. 

 Anyone want to weigh in? Here's what the Daily Kos said a almost two years ago: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/6/4/1390747/-Identity-Politics-vs-Inequality-Politics-My-Two-Cents 

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Local Election News

Turning away from the National Disaster that is the Trump election, I am pleased to let you know the victories that GreenDog Campaigns had this year. Heidi Hall, a strong up and coming Democratic leader, handily won her election against a Tea Party darling to become 1st District Supervisor in Nevada County. Happily, she won this victory outright in the June Primary, and will take office in December. A big congratulations and a lick of the GreenDog tongue to Heidi!

In the East Bay, GreenDog candidate Monica Wilson won her re-election to a second term on the   Antioch City Council. Although an anti-incumbent sentiment was in the air, her message of improving economic development prospects, public health and safety and protecting the environment, carried the day. She has been a strong voice for civic improvement and transparency on the Council and will continue to be so going forward. Great job Monica!

Locally, we had a mixed bag, losing a hard fought General Election for Superior Court judge, after a virtual dead heat in the June primary, but counting our modest help on Fairfax's Measure C (continuation of much needed sales tax for public safety and infrastructure) as part of a winning campaign. Congratulations to the great team in Fairfax (my hometown for the record)!

As we go forward into an uncertain future, comfort food is always in order:

Your pre-Thanksgiving mini sweet potato souffle:

 Ingredients

 For the Souffl├ęs
  • 3 sweet potatoes
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Large pinch of kosher salt
  • 4 egg whites
For the Crumble Topping
  • 1/4 c. finely chopped pecans
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 2 tbsp. butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place sweet potatoes on a large baking sheet and poke all over with a fork. Roast until tender, 50 minutes. Let cool completely.
  2. Scoop out flesh and transfer to a food processor along with cinnamon, brown sugar, vanilla, and salt. Add egg whites and continue to process until combined.
  3. In a large bowl, mix crumble ingredients until well combined.
  4. Butter two small ramekins. Divide batter evenly and smooth tops. Sprinkle each with crumble topping. Bake until puffy and completely set, 35 to 40 minutes. Serve imm


Thursday, November 10, 2016

If Jesus Christ Himself had Run Against Trump

Preface: I was a Bernie Sanders delegate at the Philadelphia National Convention in July. While it was clear from the primaries Bernie wasn't going to be the nominee, while he himself had endorsed Hillary the week before and he was the one who made the nomination, still many of the "Berners" around me insisted he could still carry the day. They said, "we must talk to the Superdelegates, get them to change their mind." Too late. And it wasn't the Superdelegates, it was the voters. People pointed the finger of blame at the DNC (guilty), at the media (guilty) and at those of us who accepted reality and went on to support Hillary after the Convention. (I won't accept guilt for that, but all of us should have pushed Hillary to address the real issues, like loss of jobs and alienation in the so-called "Rust-belt" States).

So who do I blame? The Zeitgeist mostly. I do not think this could have been pulled out no matter how much more Hillary did, or Bernie did, or the few Stein or Bernie-write-in voters did, that this election could have been save.

And if you think it's because they didn't like "crooked" Hillary, or the emphasis on the emails, or the last minute James Comey kerfuffle, yeah, that was all part of it. But this was the year of the dumb white man. The gross white man. The angry white man, who says what he wants and isn't going to be pushed around any more, by liberal elites, by his nagging wife, by the Boss. He's mad and he's not going to take it anymore.
It could have been Jesus Christ himself, come back to save us all by running against Trump. And it wouldn't have made a bit of difference.

"Turn the other cheek?" Real men don't turn the other cheek, they sock the other guy in the jaw.

"Suffer the little children?" Bugger the little children.

"Get those money changers out of the temple?" Whoa, there, those are my money changers, my money, my pay day loans.

He could clean up his act, cut his hair, put on a suit and tie, or just roll up the sleeves on his blue dress shirt, and they would kick his butt back to the manger.

"Hippy!" "Communist!" "Faggot!" "Jew!" Maybe even, with a name like Jesus, "Mexican!" He wouldn't last through the Primary.


So when people say "Bernie Sanders would have won," I wonder. I thought that might have been true, but looking at the numbers, at the votes in the job-loss places,  I'm not so sure. I think they would have eviscerated him, a 74 year old Socialist Jew from the Northeast. It's easy saying it's just about jobs, but even if Hillary went to those places, what could she offer that the Orange One didn't? Or, let's look at what he offered that no other candidate ever has - permission, permission to blame the other, permission to let our your inner demons. I  think this election hinged on not out and out racism of the disaffected voters, but a xenophobia that neither the Democrats nor the mainstream Republicans had a panacea for.

So, in a match up between the billionaire buffoon urging hate, and the rebel Senator from Vermont urging restraint. No, they would torn him apart. they never would have believed he could get them their jobs back, but they were willing to believe Trump. Why? Even though he was crude and lewd; even though the had gone through fortunes like water, they identified with him. Why? Maybe they welcomed the chance to cut loose their own crude lewd, racist thoughts, the ones they'd been held back from by their perception of the stranglehold of "political correctness." Maybe they liked that he was a multiple bankrupt, like so many of them, mortgaged and impoverished. Only of course, we know he was never impoverished, no matter how many bankruptcies he had.

Maybe they thought they could BE him someday, and he would teach them the secret, or they would get it by osmosis once he was in power. Who knows, but here we are. There he is, and where we go from here is anybody's guess.

Nobody ever wanted to be Jesus, or Bernie sanders for that matter. They never got to have their own TV Show. It may be just simple celebrity. Whatever it is, we just ain't got it.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Vote! Why this Berner is voting for Hillary

That's right; this diehard Bernie Sanders supporter, and delegate, is casting her vote for President for Hillary Clinton. The stakes are too high. We cannot afford to have a Donald Trump presidency. We need to vote for Hillary, as Bernie Sanders has urged us to do, and then to keep up the fight.

It is disappointing to me that so many Bernie supporters and fellow delegates appear to have a shallow understanding of politics, to put their ideology above what's good for the country, and sell themselves short in thinking they cannot make a difference by participating in the system to make it work. They'd rather stand outside and complain.

Sorry, but that's how it looks from here. But then, I've been active in the Democratic Party for years. I've seen how changes are made. Slowly, yes, and not perfectly. But delegates; you got a candidate who actually got some delegates at the convention. Who got them on committees, who got changes in the Platform. Perfect No. A progressive paragon. Of course not. But more than ever before. Jesse Jackson, where did he get? Kucinich? I would have been a delegate for him, if we'd managed to get 15% of the votes in my Congressional District. But we didn't. So I stayed home and he became a footnote to history. Not completely of course. He left an amazing legacy in his Ohio Congressional District and a lot of committed progressives working for the Department of Peace and other great causes. 

This is me now. It can be you too.
And then enjoy a delicious Election Day libation. Here's the one that sounds good to me:

Nasty Woman

3 Thai basil leaves
1/2 ounce simple syrup
3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice
2 ounces Square One basil vodka
Shake, double strain into a glass, and top with about 1.5 ounces Fever-Tree Bitter Lemon soda. Garnish with a spring of Thai basil.

  Now, go vote, then Enjoy!

 


Tuesday, November 1, 2016

If you Support Bernie, Vote Hillary

Let me preface this by saying I am a Bernie Sanders supporter. I was a Bernie Sanders Delegate to the Democratic National Convention. If you're a regular reader of this blog, you saw my posts, and photos from Philadelphia. I sat up in the almost nosebleed section way to the left of the stage with the other California Bernie delegates, who waved signs and chanted and some of whom walked out in protest after Hillary secured the nomination, the night that Bernie, in fact, nominated her.

I would like nothing better than to write in Bernie Sanders on my ballot, but I won't do it, not even in safe California.  Why? Because for Bernie to succeed in the Senate, for any of the hard-fought planks of the Democratic Platform so many of my fellow delegates helped craft, and to keep this Revolution going, we must elect Hillary Clinton as the next President of the United States and we must do it overwhelmingly.
And for the record, I waved my No More Wars sign and chanted as loudly as the others did when Leon Panetta spoke in glowing terms of the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden; and when Hillary herself reprised the same theme. And I waved my Ban Fracking and No TPP signs when Kaine and Jerry Brown spoke. I felt it was important to protest and to send a message. But I felt and feel it was and is just as important to support our candidates, both Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, as Democrats and as the bulwark against a Trump victory, and even more critically, a Trump movement of fear, racism, misogyny, climate change denial, and so much more that will only grow stronger and more hateful in the face of weak Hillary victory.

We can't afford to let that happen. 

The Clinton nomination wasn't a surprise to anyone who had been paying attention, but it didn't stop the loyalists from calling foul. There were, after all, leaked emails from some DNC staffers who seemed set on doing everything they could to make sure Bernie did not get the nomination. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the chair, was rightly forced to resign on the eve of the Convention because of it. 

But now, the only way for our progressive values and the Bernie Sanders campaign to be more than a footnote of history, and to defeat the venom of Trump is to hand Hillary a landslide victory. No, the Donald will never stop his poisonous rants and inciting violence and hatred among his followers, but if she gets a humongous popular vote on Election Day, it might dim the momentum of whatever evil deed he plans for after the election, claiming it was "rigged, so rigged" and that he's the rightful Commander in Chief and she is a pretender to the throne.

She needs to have a large popular vote to show she can govern without a split citizenry; she must win the trust of vast numbers of American voters to govern effectively. And she must win decisively to create a tidal wave of down ballot votes for Democratic candidates in Red States and Districts.

Writing in Bernie Sanders or voting Third Party not only diminishes her influence and her credibility in the White House, it hinders any progress on progressive issues. It casts a pall on the legitimacy of any strides attempted to be made by Democrats. It emboldens the Republican obstructionists in the House and Senate. We live in a divided nation. One thing the Donald's toxic campaign has shown us is just how far we are away from a truly just and equal society. Why then would we even further divide our nation, by splitting ourselves, supposed the rational, humane, environmentally and socially conscious ones, into splinter groups each wedded to our own form of purity and self-righteousness? Now is not the time for dissension in the ranks of the left. As Michael Moore says in his brilliant new movie Michael Moore in Trumpland, "Hate Hillary, but force yourself to vote for her anyway."
I have been called out by my fellow delegates. I've been labeled a "Troll" and a "Hill-bot" for listening to Bernie Sanders when he said we need Hillary Clinton in the White House. But, here's how I see it. The ones who have betrayed their progressive values, who have turned their back on their (our) candidate Bernie Sanders are the ones now urging a vote for Jill Stein or a write-in vote for Bernie they know is nothing but a protest vote. A protest of a system we all know is far from perfect. So I do understand their anger, their disappointment and their protest. But I also believe Bernie when he says "Now is not the time for a protest vote." By turning their backs on Bernie now, by abandoning the Democratic Party (yes I know many of them were never Democrats to begin with, just played one to get to the Convention), is to ignore the real strides made in this revolutionary, historical campaign that netted Bernie Sanders more than 1800 delegates to the Democratic National Convention. And yes, I am very proud to have been one of them.

I was and am proud of the platform Bernie helped fashion with the hard work done by many of these same delegates who now gloat over Hillary's emails, while virtually ignoring Trump's sex scandals, hatred and ugly greed. No, now is not the time for a protest vote. Now is the time to be united. Then keep the movement alive on November 9th and beyond. Do it for Bernie.
Let's not throw our precious vote away.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Too Many "October Surprises" to keep Track of

Update: All this to do has to do with serial sexter Anthony Wiener. See  http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/29/us/politics/fbi-hillary-clinton-email.html  Remember him? And the server they were on, apparently was his. What this has to do with Hillary I don't know, except Wiener's wife, Huma Abedin, works for Hillary. Anthony looks like a small time perv compared to the Donald, the "Groper in Chief."

First it was emails, then it was Trump's gloating about sexually assaulting women, then accusations of "voter fraud" now back to the emails. Deja vu all over again?

Such reputable outsets as Mother Jones and NPR are reporting James Comey's new investigation into whether or not  some emails found on another device held by another person might be relevant.
This is being done, said Comey " to determine whether they contain classified information, as well as to assess their importance to our investigation."


What it is we don't know. No one does and Comey has not said. So why is it being reported as though it is some major new revelation. Trump of course is gloating; Fox News is salivating.

Comey Letter:

11 days until Election Day. I wonder how all this came about so conveniently at this time? As the Donald said about revelations of his own slimy behavior with women. "Lies, all lies," said the Donald, threatening to sue the women who accused him of sexual assault.





Why then is he so willing to assume the worst about the FBI simply doing their due diligence by looking at what these emails may contain?

Do we even have to ask?

What next, Flying Monkeys?

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Going from Bernie to Trump, Really?

In the 60's we talked about "heightening the contradictions," that if things got so bad in America, that they would have to take a turn for the better, that people would wake up from their Cold War stuper and slap themselves upside the head, saying "I coulda had a revolution!"

Then we little radicals would run in and claim our rightful places in the new government, after the old one crumbled from it's own weight, and would be hailed as conquering heroes, while still being under thirty.

Remember "Never trust anyone over thirty"? Now we are all over thirty, way over and we can look back on that time with a little it of reality and historical perspective

As a Bernie Sanders delegate who proudly case my vote for the most progressive, the only true progressive in the running this year, at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, I am living in a kind of deja vu. Shades of the 60's and Eugene McCarthy (although i was not "clean for Gene" back then, because I thought that was a rather condescending and demeaning phrase, assuming all young people were dirty and had to be cleaned up before they could go on the stump). We did not get the progressive candidate of our choice, but we did get a lot accomplished. Instead of taking credit for a job well done, instead of listening to Bernie Sanders when he urges us to vote for Hillary, when he even nominated her, some of his delegates are pushing Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate, who doesn't have a chance. Or worse, openly rooting for a Trump victory, because that will pave the way for a truly progressive president to emerge and win, next time.

Now, before you jump all over me and say I sold out, then or now, look at the parallels. In 1968, we had a choice between Richard "I am not a crook" Nixon and Hubert Humphrey. Humphrey had been a civil rights leader in his day. But these days he was looking just liberal, maybe a warmonger, certainly the establishment. Tricky Dick was a liar and a thief and sleazeball paranoiac, but we decided in our youthful wisdom that they were just the same, Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum.
 
We marched in rallies when Humphrey came to town and chanted "Dump the Hump!" We didn't vote. (To be fair to my young self, I couldn't vote, as the voting age was 21 and I had just turned 20 that year). We got Nixon and the rest, as they say, is History. Ok, it would have been history one way or the other. But my point is we thought let them vote for Nixon; things will surely change. I bet some people even said what some Bernie Sanders supporters now say, If Nixon (Trump) is elected, we'll be setting the stage for a really progressive president next time." Fast forward past Cambodia, Kent State, Watergate, impeachment, resignation. Gerald Ford. 1975. The Vietnam War finally ends.

Then we do get Jimmy Carter, the earnest peanut farmer, one of the best I think, but weak as a president and vulnerable to an October surprise, paving the way to Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush. Finally Clinton, not the most progressive, but a Democrat; then George W. Bush, warmonger extreme and village idiot. Which brings us to Obama. And now, you say Trump will lead to a truly progressive era. The best we've been able to do is fight like crazy to clean up the mess left behind.

Been there, tried that. Bernie Sanders himself, who was also there and so is a part of living history some of his own supporters who now spout off on Facebook, should pay attention to. Am i in love with Hillary Clinton? I am not. Is she the lesser of two evils? She may well be. But do you really want to take a chance with racism, mysogeny, anti-immigration policies, anti-labor, and all that goes with Trump's vision of "Making America great again," as a social experiment you hope will turn out ok in the end.

If you won't listen to Bernie, pick up a damn book. Go on the History Channel. Google the last nearly fifty years and tell yourself how great it is to live in this post-Nixon time, when all is peace and love. Because, wait for it, the contradictions were heightened.

Magical thinking my friends. Accept reality, accept the very real victories we have earned with more than 1800 Bernie Sanders delegates in Philadelphia, with the most progressive and forward -looking platform the democratic Party has had in years, if ever, with Hillary invoking Bernie's name and policies. Don't see it as co-optation; see it as a chance. Don't squander it. That is the way to a truly progressive future, maybe even in your lifetimes.

Vote!



Monday, October 17, 2016

Donald Trump's Evil Twin

"It wasn't me, ok? I can't believe you people, loyal Trumpanistas, could ever believe that I would do any of those horrible, horrible things to women. I love the women, you know that right. No one loves the women more than me. And I mean that in a totally respectful way.

"It was my evil twin. There I said it. I have an evil twin. No really, you think I'm making it up, right? You think 'there he goes again' excusing away some really despicable behavior.

"How do you think it makes me feel to have this evil twin stalking me all the time, pretending to be me, doing these really really bad things? I have never, never, put my hands, and they are good hands, really strong, and not small; he's the one with the small hands, mine are perfectly formed, really great hands, never put these hands up any woman's skirt.

"Imagine the burden I suffer under. I build a real estate empire, and he goes and gambles it all away. Bankruptcies? Me? Never! It was him, What a loser. So now I am being honest with you. I have tried to cover iup for that loser, but no more!

"Make that guy take a drug test! Make him get his fake orange hair tested too, and his fake orange face also. I mean, does anyone really think a real American man like me has fake anything? That guy is an imposter, and he has got to go. Worse than crooked Hillary.

"I'm the good guy. I love the women, I love the Mexicans (in the right places, like busing tables and picking lettuce and selling tacos.  Did I tell you how much I love taco trucks? Love them!)
"And I love the Muslims too, great people, the Muslims, they've got no fashion sense, but what are ya going to do? I am not prejudiced against the Muslims. And did I tell you how much I love the blacks? Salt of the earth, those blacks.

"So, I'm the one wronged here, and I am going to get rid of that evil twin right now. You are going to see a new Donald Trump at the next debate, I mean the real Donald Trump, just wait.

"And if crooked Hillary says one negative thing about me, I can sue her lying ass for libel, because it wasn't me. It was him, and she better get that straight right now!"



Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Donald Trump's Locker Room

Satire alert; hope you like it.

Deep under Trump Tower in New York, Donald Trump entered his private locker room from the sauna, his big belly heaving over the skimpy towel. He began to sniff eagerly, like a hound dog seeking out a treed raccoon.

"Do I smell sweat socks?" he asked of Putin, just pulling up his girdle.

"Not mine, you don't" Vlad said, giving a delicate sniff of his own. "Must be Howard Stern's.

Howard sauntered over, hair all disheveled and breathing heavily. "I think it's my pits Donald. Here." He held up a hairy armpit, which caused Donald to draw back just the slightest bit.
"Pussy!" accused Howard, while Putin sniggered.

"Who you calling pussy, you dickhead!" Donald retorted, his orange face turning beet red.

"Don't give yourself a coronary," Vlad said, examining his pecs in the locker room mirror. "We need someone to wipe down these mirrors. They're all steamed up."
"Get Kelly Ann," said Trump, opening his own locker, where his climate controlled stem proof mirror hung from the door. He proceeded to pull out various sprays, lotions and potions, and applying them liberally to his hair.

"What is that anyway?" Howard Stern said, coming up behind Donald. "A dead wombat?"

"Why you Kike bastard!" Are you stalking me?"

"Calm down," Vlad implored the two men. "It's just locker room banter Donald. Don't get your panties in a twist."

"You know I can bomb the pants right offa you anytime I want Vlad, so cool your jets. My bombs are the best, by the by the way. So good." He sniffed heavily again. "Gym socks in here somewhere. Who's that hiding under the bench over there? Hey you with the smelly feet!"

"Sorry sir," said the meek smallish man wearing a Trump for Dictator tee shirt in day glow orange. "I'm the janitor. I can only afford one pair of socks, and the laundromat in my building is defective. I thought since you were all for the people, and helping us little guys, maybe you could spare a pair or two. My athlete's foot makes it really hard to keep the job."

"My good man," said Trump, beckoning the little fellow to him. "You may be small in stature, but you are great in political capital. And I do have a thing for stinky feet you know. So real."

"Then you'll help me?" asked the man, hardly able to believe his good fortune.

"I didn't say that. But I might be able to give you a part in my next TV ad, which I will fund myself. I'm rich, you know, so rich. And I love the little guy. No one loves the little guy as much as I do. Almost as much as the women. And not a word out of you two bozos or it's Siberia for both of you, he said, menacingly to Putin and Stern.

"What happened to your hair anyway Howard? You been wrestling alligators or something?"

"Ha! I was mobbed on the way in here by a bunch of liberal pinkos with protest signs. They assaulted me!"

"Did you call the cops?"

"Nah, they were all girl scouts, trying to sell me cookies, in between the smackdown. They are a tough bunch."
"I'd like a cookie. Did you get any?"

"Not cookies," said Howard, meaningfully."

"Hey, that's great locker room banter, don't you think Vlad and..." he turned to the diminutive janitor "What's your name, anyway? You look familiar. Do I know you"

"It's John Kasich; I used to be, you know, a Republican candidate. "But after my humiliating loss, I had to take any job I could."

"Can you clean the steam off this mirror?" Vlad gestured Kasich over.

"I guess so, but I sure could use those socks, Mr. Trump."

"When you make an ad for me, then we'll see about the socks."

"I'm not sure about that ad, Mr. Trump. I know I'm poor and deperate, but my wife would kill me."

"Your wife?!" Donald grew outrageous. "Get yourself another one. Clean socks. That will do the trick. But first the ad."

With that, he turned back to primping, his bowl full of jelly tummy bobbing along to the spritzers of hair product he kept applying as Kasich pleaded with Vlad for some clean socks in exchange for clearing the mirror. Howard Stern turned off his mic and scooted off to air the tape on his next show.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Trump and Putin: the Dream Ticket

A little borrowed levity from Michael Lerner, written by another Rabbi with a good sense of humor and outrage. Enjoy:
[A bit of humor in light of the latest revelations about a presidential candidate whose disgusting attitude toward women is no laughing matter! This is a selection from a fuller piece written by my Jewish Renewal rabbinic colleague Elliot Ginsburg who teaches Jewish Studies at the U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor-- Warm regards to all. Rabbi Michael Lerner rabbilerner.tikkun@gmail.com]
 Trump Exes Pence and taps Putin as new Veepster
(unedited transcript)
Breaking News:  And here to deliver the news is our undercover reporter, known gnomically as Trump L’ie. (Or do you say, Trump L’Oy?)...His voice has been digitally altered lest he be publicly fingered and outed…and force-fed with well-meaning gluten.
Thanks Pritchard. I’m here streaming undercover at the Tsibl Tower, deep in the heart of Gruzya and have we got a hot scoop for you. 
[Full voice, stentorian]: As we all know, pressure has been mounting over the past 36 hours for Donald J. Trump to withdraw from the Presidential race in the wake of the Excess Hollywood tape scandal. We have it on reliable source that Trump is planning his counter-offensive, preemptively removing Mike Pence from the ticket for his “half-baked, on-the-fence support” and “his longish fingers which make me look bad.” And here’s the gobsmacker: The Donald’s allegedly replacing “Weak-Mike Pence” with “a strong leader” with downright stubby digits, Vladimir Putin—who would simultaneously retain his position as pre-eminent Russian leader.

This unprecedented decision came about in a hush-hush confab in the Alaska compound of travel-show host Sarah “Litwack” Palin (or do you say, Poiln?). Palin has been serving as Trump’s unofficial advisor on World Affairs and Birth Control. (In that order. First the Affairs and then the Birth Control.) Campaign Insiders Newt Gingrinch and Chris Crispie (code-name Creme)—Trump’s Weight-Watcher sponsors—were also in tow. Looking through Sarah’s famous window, Trump reportedly grew agitated before growing glassy eyed and waxing prophetic:
“I see London, I see France, I see no future under Pence….In fact, I see the future and it is Rootin’ Tootin’ Vladimir Fuckin-Putin rearing his head (and heading u-know-who’s pantsuited rear) as my Veep. If Crooked Hillary launches a Putin Riot, we boink the protesters, and make America really great again. Vladimir Putin, initials Vee-Pee, will be my sidekick and hobnobber, my bouncer- in-chief. We give half-baked Pence the heave-ho, the hobnailed boot, and bring on Putin-Boots. Or as I call him, Vlad the Impaler. Did you see the size of that man’s hands? Smaller than mine.
Newt interrupts (gassy): Er, one problem, Donald. He’s not exactly American or even Murican. That’s against the Second Amendment—even if Scalia were still alive and kicking—as I’ve noted in my learned books.
Trump: No problem. We give Putin special status as native-born, like the rigged system did for John McCain who was born in Panama, or that Mexican, Mitt Romney. Where was the damn wall when we fuckin’ needed it?
Crispie: No Donald. You can’t make Putin American until after you assume rule and expand the Second Amendment by executive fiat.
Trump: Unless. Unless...I've been pullin' your legs, guys. Damn it, Sarah, you tell ‘em:
Sarah: You betcha. And aren’t we all looking swell in our sensiband expando-slacks?! So, I got this doohickey from Breitbart this morning….
Trump (interrupting). Wrong. It was technically last night, Alaska time, in the wee hours my time, while I was tooting up a storm or maybe tweeting. It’s Vladimir Fuckingovich Putin’s secret goddam birth-certificate. The long-form. Says right here, he’s really from... get this, that swing state, Florida.
Crispie: no shit

Gingrinch: you sure it’s real…
Trump: it’s a real hack...really real. Could have been the Russians, or maybe Jina or maybe it’s from my 400 pound twin brother sitting on a bed somewhere. But it’s real...I can smell, and taste, and rub its yuge reality. See, born in Florida. St. Petersberg, to be exact.

Gingrich: shit...
Trump: Yup, da man’s from St. Petersburg. Right here, in black and white. Fucking St Pete. I love Florida. I own half of Florida. I have many buildings there. We could make Del-a-Mar the new White House! Build a dacha for Putin behind. So, in with Putin, out with Fencey-Pence. We got this baby in the Gucci bag. A round of Trump Steaks for the house! (Pauses to spray hair) Liar liar yo’ Pence be fired!
Sarah (martial in tone): Newt and Chris, you take care of Reince and Ryan. I’ll neutralize Pence with some fractured syntax. We’ll all need new hats: Maybe “Make America-n-Russia great again.” Something with faux fur ear-flaps. And maybe some sexy caribou antlers for huntin’ season.
Gingrinch: Yeah, but what’s in it for Putin?

Trump: He keeps his Russian post. And we give him an American beach-head: West Palm Beach, Miami Beach and Boynton Beach. And a sexy byatch, the one from Days of our Lives. Did you see her legs? And maybe if he pushes back real hard, Brighton Beach.
Crispie: And remember, I have a bridge I could sell him real cheap. He’s got the dough. As they say, Crimea pays.
Trump: Fellows, fellows...leave it to the Donald to close the deal. I tell you. Vlad’s got the hots for me. Believe me. No one has greater hots for me than him. I’m one star he can’t resist. For starters, we can go horseback riding. He without his shirt and me without my Pence. I’ll dismount. I’ll remount. We’ll rub noses. I’ll suck his toots, get him all hot and buttered, and, the piece de no-resistance, grab him by his Putin.
Trump for the Win!
Chris and Newt: Yessss! Score one for the Donald.
Trump: Sarah, pack my extra-long tie and my rack of tic-tacs...
[ Now, he has something to say in tonight's debate!]

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

How to get free publicity for your campaign without committing a scandal

There are a number of ways to get free publicity for your campaign. Make a public blunder, have some "private" embarrassing moments go public, but if you want good publicity, it's not so easy. The press isn't going to take notice of your campaign beyond the usual short blurb they give every candidate. They might cover a debate or two if the issues are juicy, but short of punching your opponent in the nose, it's hard to get reporters to cover you.
So you need to do it yourself. There are a few ways of do it yourself press. One is the oped. If there is a newsworthy issue in your campaign, and the press hasn't picked up on it, write an oped piece that focuses on the issue and real solutions. This needs to be something other than a puff piece bout your own campaign.  Another person might write about the issue and why you'd be the right person to solve it. They would likely invite your opponent to have someone send in an article on his/her behalf as well.

Another way is to start your own blog, but that's a lot of work, and online publication just don't reach voters that well, despite the proliferation of social media sites dedicated to politics. In fact, that's one of the problems, there are so many, people tend to ignore them in favor of cute cat videos.

The simplest is to have people send in short letters to the editor. These can be written by one person and signed by others. Issues can be split up, so that one person writes about how you are the best candidate to fill potholes, while another writes about your talent at bringing people together. Still others can discuss the differences between you and your opponent and what makes you the most ft for the job.
 
Letters are a good way to convey your message to a number of people (at least the newspaper reading people, and remember, many read the paper online, so you are reaching them as well), and it is one section of the paper people do read. Your letter may well get some responses from your opponent's camp or people who may be passionate about whatever issues are on the line.

These can come in at various intervals, so that they don't bunch up on an editor's desk. Here are a few guidelines for a successful Letters to the Editor campaign.

1. Keep them short. 200 words are so is the optimal length. Much longer and you risk editing and possibly losing your main point to a pair of scissors.

2. Proofread carefully. Spelling is important, good grammar and punctuation also count. If you are speaking on a candidate's behalf, you want to come across as articulate and well informed.

3. Make sure they are truthful. do not make things up, or exaggerate your abilities. Don't make your opponent sound like an ogre unless he/she truly is one, and still, pick your words wisely.

4. Be prepared to write follow up or response letters if you get attacked by others, or if others write letters that cast you in a negative light.

Follow those easy rules and you'll get your name in the paper and maybe find some new volunteers to help with the campaign too, when they see how many enthusiastic supporters you already have.
Here is some "Brain food" to snack on while composing your letters:

KAMUT UDON NOODLES WITH KALE & AVOCADO

(Avocado is said to help with blood flow to the brain for clarity of thought.)
Time: less than 20 minutes
Servings: 2
8-oz package kamut udon noodles
2 tablespoons avocado oil (or grape seed oil)
1 tomato, chopped
3/4 bunch of lacinato kale, cut into long thin strips
3 carrots – peeled and sliced/grated
a handful of mushrooms, white or brown – finely sliced
generous drizzle of organic soy sauce/tamari, to taste
a few sprinkles of crushed red pepper flakes
dash of salt
squirt of honey
1 avocado, peeled and sliced – garnish
squeeze of fresh lime juice
In a pot of boiling water, cook kamut udon noodles as per package instructions until al dente, usually 8 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water.
Pour noodles back into pot with heat on low to medium. Then add kale, carrots, tomatoes, mushrooms, tamari, honey, red pepper flakes and avocado oil. Heat gently, stir until steaming and kale has softened, 2-3 minutes.
Garnish with thick slices of avocado and squeeze of lime juice. Dig in!

Friday, September 2, 2016

Time to start Planning that first Mail Piece

Today is Sept. 2. Monday is Labor Day, the "official" start of the campaign season. If you're a serious campaigner though, you know the campaign started months earlier with your decision to run, hiring the right consultants and staff, and assembling an awesome team of volunteers.
You've honed your budget and used your fund-raising skills to make phone calls for that important early money. You've got a walk piece or door hanger "in the can." Or you may have already started walking with it, depending on the size of your volunteer force and your district.

Now you are ready to start planning that all-important first mailer that will hit the voters' mailboxes around the same time their absentee ballots do. More and more Americans are voting by mail and the vote-by-mail (sometime called permanent absetee0 voter is more and more important. Although many of these voters hang on to their ballots until the days before the election, there is still a significantly large enough number of them that you need to reach them early. That means your mail needs to be created and sent to the printer well in advance of the date, so that it arrives in the voters' mailboxes right on time.

Work with your consultant who knows the timing, and can be sure that the mailing label is placed correctly and get an estimate for costs well ahead of time. Most printers need payment up front, and the Post Office doesn't take IOU's.

So, start working on that messaging now. Make sure you have good photos to tell your story with, and you'll be well prepared to get the mail out and in the early voters' hands when it counts the most.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Open Letter to Jill Stein and the Green Party

I have given up trying to talk Bernie delegates out of voting for a third party candidate or not voting at all for that matter. I understand the bit about voting your conscience; I understand the deep visceral dislike and distrust of Hillary and all things Clinton. I'm not in love with her myself. But she is the nominee. There are only two candidates in this race, so far as I can see, viability wise. and Jill Stein is not one of them.
The Green Party, for the most part, has not done the hard work of building the base, for building up a reservoir of local State and Federal officials. Yes, where I am fortunate to live, the San Francisco Bay Area, there are Green City Council members, even a water board member in Marin County. But how common is that? Arcata has Greens on the Council. I'm sure others do too. But there is a deep gulf between the City Council of a small progressive town and the President of the United States.

So while I support the Green Party's progressive policy statements and platform points, I cannot support the decision to run Presidential candidates at such a critical juncture in our history. And I am and have always been a strong supporter of some form of a multiple party system; of coalition governments like they have in Europe. However, we do not have such a viable system now. And running losing Presidential candidates every year, with no back up in the form of legislators in State and Federal government, doesn't make the job easier.

Especially in crucial years, such as this one, where the stakes are so high. Where a Donald Trump Presidency, however remote that seems to all of us, cannot be counted out.

Call Hillary and the Dems corrupt all you want. They are all that stands between us and world annihilation, deep alienation at the least, a country where guns may outnumber classrooms, where hate is encouraged, suspicion of one's neighbors is encouraged, and how long do you think it will be before they start asking us to "name names?" Trump has been called the new McCarthy, Hitler, Mussolini.  Yes, he is a dangerous man, and his invective against anyone not white, male and sycophantic horrifying.

So, I have decided not to address the earnest Bernie supporters who have left the Party (Democratic Party that is), who do not think its worth trying to appeal to Hillary, to stay and fight and hold her feet to the fire, as Bernie has asked us to do. It's your right to ignore the candidate you supported all those months, years, because he is disappointing you by supporting his rival in the Primaries. I get that.

And so I turn to the Green Party itself and to its candidate, Jill Stein. At one point she offered her position to Bernie Sanders. He declined to take it. He does not want to run as a third party candidate. He gets that the stakes are too high to take the risk.

Now it is time for the Green Party to step up, or stand down, as the case may be. To give the Bernie delegates and supporters false hopes that their candidate has a chance, that their message, at the least coming from the outside, will make a difference, is just plain cruel and wrong headed. (Of course, I hasten to say this is my opinion only., but it seems to be the logical conclusion); and the Green Party does not and should not indulge in cruelty. They call for peace, for humane treatment of all, for justice.

Love her or not, Hillary is the only nominee we have capable of beating Trump at this point. Bernie is gone. Jill Stein, no matter how saintly, is marginal. Do the right thing, and drop out of the race; throw your support to Hillary for the good of the Country and the future, for the children.
'
And I am talking quite literally here. With Donald Trump and his petty vendettas, there may be no future, nothing for the children, no clean air, or water, possibly no livable planet at all if he gets his finger on "the button."

No chance to build a viable third party movement that can make the changes we all want to see.  

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Our Revolution or The Kids are All right

Democracy is always unruly. So are revolutions. And you can't always separate what works from what doesn't. There are always going to be sausage casings on the floor, and slippery muck underfoot. Don't look too close and take away what you will.

Like conspiracy theories. Was the election rigged? Like most things, the answer will turn out to be yes and no. Those in power want to stay in power. You sometimes have to chop them down at the root. Whoops, there goes Debbie Wasserman Schultz. And the people doing the chopping and the chanting, don't always know what they want, or when they get it it.

On the last night of the Democratic National Convention, as I sat among the Bernie kids, I didn't have a very hard time seeing my younger self in them. We wanted revolution too, and we seriously thought we'd get it. Not only in our lifetimes, but before we turned thirty, and could not longer trust ourselves, an irony totally lost on us back then.


Tonight, I see disorganization in action, carefully Kinko printed signs waved at appropriate or inappropriate times; Bernie no longer visible in his box where he has been sitting, chin on hand for the last three nights (although people say he's still there, hidden behind the crowds, his own people, Hillary people, Secret Service, DNC goons, or whatever the theory of the moment is about where all these new people came from).

We had rushed to get there early, warned that seat holders, hired off Craigslist would keep us from our places in the stands, and the seats had occupied -  the three old ladies, I call us, Mayme, Ruth and me - do find our accustomed places three rows from the top of the California delegation, at the end of the row, amidst the unruly northern California Bernie kids, taken, we find places a few rows down where a lone woman in a white blazer, with smoldering eyes stands in the middle of the row and declaims "These seats are for my friends."

You can't save seats, we say; we are sitting here. No she says, my friends are coming. "You can stay," I say in my most accommodating tone, "but we have to sit somewhere, and people are in our seats."  We sit, she fumes; she threatens to tell someone; schoolyard tactics.

later Alieta from the DNC arrives, smoothing ruffled feathers.  I realize I may one of the very few people here who actually know people in the DNC, who actually got to vote for them, as I sit on the Executive Board of the California Democratic Party. It's the last night of the Convention; previously empty seats are filled. How did all the Hillary people get here so early, when the first buses didn't leave until 2:30 and we were on one? (How, for that matter, did all these other Bernie people get here before us to take our seats?) Seat fillers, people knowingly whisper, no, shout around us. Goons, paid to keep us, rightfully elected Bernie delegates, from our seats.

If you leave you'll never get back in, they say. They will put someone in your seat. The guards at the door wont let you in.  I seriously want a drink. Tom Steyer, of Next Gen Climate Change has established a watering hole and buffet free to California delegates in the closed down bar across from our section. You need an ID to get in, to prove you are a California delegate, and not an interloper from, say Arkansas. Bernie and Hillary delegates mingle and drink together, eat ersatz fajitas and middle eastern fare, fruit and popcorn, vie for a space on the comfy white leather couches and fat arm chairs equipped with outlets for phone charging.
I ask the volunteers at the door if I can go out and still get back in. Of course, as long as you have your floor badge. At least one myth debunked. But later I see videos of the reserved signs on all the seats, ours included, and the very same woman who tried to keep us from sitting in the row she was saving "for her friends" refusing to budge, even after the Bernie people pull all the reserved signs off the seats.

I head for the bar. There on the TVs usually reserved for basketball viewing (this is a basketball arena after all), I watch some blustering General echo the troubling theme of military might. Inside the arena, the kids are shouting No More War and waving signs wildly. California may be off to the side, the Oregon and Washington are front and Center, their bright neon shirts proclaiming Enough is Enough leading the chants.

Inside, more conspiracy theories. Shawnee Badger, a twenty-two year old delegate who aspires to modeling and acting on her website, talks incessantly and urgently into her phone, recording the whole action; "See those things up there," she says, holding aloft her phone to film the mounted boxes above us that look like speakers. "Those are white noise machines, to drown us out." Later we learn they are wi fi enhancers or something innocuous , but it does seem to be true that after the first unruly chants of nights one and two, the home viewing audience doesn't hear much from the California Berners. Across from us, chants of USA USA are drowning out the "No more war" chants when Hillary speaks, once again, of American military might. I have the very surreal feeling I have stumbled into a parallel universe of the Republicans National Convention, or maybe an international soccer match.

After some Bernie kids creatively "deface' the first few official signs, using their smuggled in markers to change some wording to reflect pro-Bernie, anti-war, anti-Hillary sentiment, they are handed on the first couple of nights, signs reading  Stronger Together, Love Trumps Hate, others, the volunteers in neon vests, or hall monitors, as I think of them, no longer give us any more. We don't get the Hillary signs, or the USA signs, don't want those. We do get American flags, the kids affix to their Bernie signs or their Ban Fracking signs, or other signs, some of which make no sense, until deep reflection. Not made for prime time, but the cameras are not on our section.

The Oregon group across the way sticks to the main message NO TPP. When Hillary speaks, our elected whips or representatives try to keep a form of order by determining which signs to hold up when. Bernie has texted everyone that he wants us to be respectful. He has nominated Hillary after all. Some people can't help themselves and boo anyway. Sounds of Shhh Shh, can be heard. Shouts of "Hold up your signs. No, the other sign!" pointing out the "intersectionality Matters signs people have been given. "But I don't know what it means," says a woman behind me." I'm not holding up any signs. Except, I can't help myself, once an anti-war activist, always an anti-war activist, I do wave my No more war sign, when Hillary who must prove she is tough, Commander in Chief material, I get it, starts in on how she helped decide to kill Bin Laden.

The night before, we shouted that message to Leon Panetta, and I chanted along with the rest, and he got it, looking chagrined to be out shouted by the crowd. They turned off the lights in Oregon, and the kids took up the chant, "Lights lights lights!" And the Oregon delegation lit up their cell phone flashlights. This is what Democracy looks like.

Many of these kids came out of the Occupy movement. And they have come to occupy the DNC. Many of them have turned their back on Bernie from the moment he endorsed Clinton last Tuesday in a joint appearance. Or they just refuse to believe it. The vote is rigged; (well, yes, isn't it always), he didn't actually say he conceded. When we cast our votes for him at the Convention, won't they be surprised. The interwebs are buzzing in the lead up to the Convention, with loose strategy. "Talk to a superdelegate," Some people urge. "Make them understand  if they vote for Hillary, she can't win. They must vote for Berrnie." "Talk to Hillary delegates," say others, "Get them to change their votes. Explain the polls to them. Only Bernie can win against Trump"  I don't know if anyone actually did try talking to Superdelegate or Hillary delegates at the Convention. I know letters were sent to some Superdlegates urging them to vote for Bernie, or at least abstain. On the night of the roll call, several abstentions were noted in some states. Were these Superdelegates who listened? or leftover Martin O'Malley supporters? Or something else altogether?

When WikiLeaks confirms the fears of NC complicity in a Hillary victory,  and Wasserman Schultz provided more resources to the Hillary camp than the Bernie camp despite their supposed neutrality and even handedness toward all candidates, the game is amped up. Wassermann Schultz is forced to resign. But why did Hillary hire her?The questions persist. Many people still to this day feel the election was rigged. Perfect, no. Did some in the DNC try to influence the election for Hillary. No question. But what exactly was done, who did it and why? It's up to us to ferret that out. Let's ask our DNC delegates as soon as we can, to sit down and discuss these serious issues with us.