Sanders isn’t Holding the Democratic Party Hostage. I AM.

Writing

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/peter-d-rosenstein/bernie-sanders-should-not_b_13913148.html

Here’s how delusional the Establishment is, they think that they don’t have to examine their behavior after suffering the most devastating and humiliating loss in modern history to a racist man who joked about sexual assault on film. And apparently it’s mean to even suggest otherwise. They also think it is mean to even suggest that they lost and have to give up some power to the people in the party who suggested that their tactics weren’t going to work. They think it is being HELD HOSTAGE when their working class says, “hey, you have to represent us.” WHICH IS SANDERS’ JOB. This is just his job, it is the job of representatives to say, “you have to represent the people, and I’m going to push you to.” This whole article is a transparent attempt on the part of party elites to tell the working class members of the party that they aren’t allowed to talk. These are classic silencing tactics and there is no reason why we should listen to them. They think their platform was “the most progressive in history” and never ask who it was the most progressive for? I don’t remember there being a whole lot in there for the poor, even though we tried to push that in there, and I seem to remember several people telling me I had to accept this to “Stop Trump” or else. Well, they failed to stop Trump, so I’m not sure what excuse they have to keep me quiet now. And they think that all the Sanderistas are independents who aren’t actual members of the party. Despite the fact that this has been proven to be false several times.

So, allow me to pop some bubbles and bring them up to speed on the actual hostage situation they are now in.

1) You lost. You lost big and because you lost, the elements of the party, which are the Sanders folks, now get to take the party over because that’s how the game is played. You can whine about it. You can fight it. But this is inevitable. And it ain’t a hostage situation. This is a hostile takeover and the name of your enemy isn’t Bernie Sanders. The name is Heather Raffin and if you were real feminists you’d give a bitch credit. There are a bunch of me around the country who are sick of you failing to represent us. Who are sick of being treated poorly and who are sick of people bullying us into supporting a party that not only doesn’t represent us in any tangible, meaningful way, but is also actively oppressing us while expecting pats on the back in the process. We DON’T HAVE TO DO anything for you. You need to explain us why we should help you.

2) I’ve been a card carrying Democrat since I was 18. I’ve registered voters. Caucused for you. Increased turnout. I come with a veritable army of working class people that will follow my votes with me and if I leave the party, they will decide what to do themselves like adults, but I promise you that they trust me a lot more than they trust you. TEST ME and see what happens.

3) Your platform was not the “most progressive” in history. It was progressive FOR RICH PEOPLE. It had no tangible benefits for the poor. For that, you have to go back to FDR and LBJ, but you don’t remember that because y’all don’t remember your roots. Well, your working class hasn’t forgotten. We remember and we pass that shit around through oral history. And we are taking the party back for their rightful owners whether you like it or not. You can get out of the way or you can fall. The choice is yours, but don’t blame it on Sanders. You brought this on yourselves.

4) You fucks have been running around laughing about how funny it is that white trash like me will die under Trump. You’ve been doing nothing while my friends have to worry about their baby dying. You have sat back and passed symbolic legislation that puts the poor in more danger while exploiting our labor and expecting pats on the back. This makes you my enemy, not my ally. According to the laws of MY PEOPLE, I have everything I need to justify using everything in my arsenal to take you out. And yet, here I am kindly giving you a warning about what is coming for you if you don’t change your tune. That’s because, unlike you, I have a sense of honor and dignity. That’s me being nice. You should be grateful we are being so kind. You are lucky you are getting this much warning after how you treated us. If I were you, I wouldn’t complain about it.

5) The Republicans are offering to talk about class and to deal with the issues the working class face, you are not. They’ve mentioned this to several Sanderistas in public while you’ve been publishing this bullshit. GIVE ME ONE GOOD REASON WHY I SHOULDN’T TAKE THEM UP ON IT?

That’s right folks. If you don’t change your tune, we have an alternative. In exactly a month, if the following conditions aren’t met, I will LEAVE the Democrat party and encourage the rest to come with me. I will re-register as a independent and support candidates regardless of their party affiliations who back the needs of the working class exclusively. I will continue to organize the working classes, and I will do absolutely everything in my power to take down what remains of the rich among the left who can’t pull their heads out of their asses and do what is right for the poor. From here on out, I am making it my personal mission to COME FOR EACH AND EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU RICH FUCKS THAT IS RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THE POOR. I CONSIDER YOU RESPONSIBLE FOR TRUMP’S PRESIDENCY.

If the following conditions are met within the next month, I will remain within the party and continue to try to work within it. NOW YOU ARE IN A HOSTAGE SITUATION. I hope now you’ve learned an important lesson about checking your fucking rhetoric.

1) You don’t have to make Keith Ellison the head of the party, but I want a Sanderista, and I consider the placement of Rahm Emmanuel as the head of the party a Declaration of War.

2) I want a party platform that includes the input of actual working class people with progressive economic policies that include things that benefit working families and large swathes of the population. I want this process to include actual consultation with the working classes and I want it working class led.

3) I want a microphone and exposure given to working class people similar to what was given to Diamond and Silk. http://www.diamondandsilkinc.com/

4) I want the rich members of the party to stop engaging in bigoted rhetoric towards members of the poor, including poor whites. I want them to accept a backseat role in activism. I want them to give up leadership positions to working class and grassroots activists and I want the focus of the left to change to problems of the poor.

5) I want the party to deal with voter suppression and to admit that there were problems during the primaries. I want the party to advocate for a national holiday for voters so that everyone has the opportunity to vote and I want the left to organize voter ID drives like they used to do.

6) I want the adults on the left to actually get the bullies under control. No more ruining the lives of innocent people. This means no more going after people’s jobs for tweets. This means no more purging of dissenters. This means that the college students are exposed for the brats they are. This also means that the left disavows and repudiates any tactics that puts innocents and the working classes at greater risk under a Trump administration.

THIS IS A START TO FIXING THE PROBLEMS YOU NOW FACE. You guys can fall in line on this or you can fall. I don’t care. We got three years before 2020 and I have the more compelling narrative on my side and the facts. You wanna underestimate us, go ahead. Every time you do, you make this much easier for me. You wanna try to purge me? Go ahead. You make this easier for me. Ignore me? Go ahead? You are proving my point. I suggest you take the deal I am offering you now and save the position you presently hold because we don’t even have to let you have that.

Trump got elected on your watch. So we don’t owe you shit.

This isn’t a hostage situation. YOUR ASS IS BEING RIGHTEOUSLY DETHRONED AND MY NEW NAME IS KHALESSI.

Sanders was as nice as y’all were going to do. You should have gone with him. Attack him again and see what happens.

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I’ll Vote However I Want, Thanks

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When I decide who I’m going to vote for, I ask myself a few basic questions.

 

The first one is “will this person make it more likely that kids like me don’t go hungry in the future?”

 

The second is “will this person, to the best of their abilities make life better for working class people?”

 

and

 

On the foreign policy side, “will this person not embarrass us and avoid anything that resembles bombing poor and marginalized people in other countries/sending poor people to die and kill in other countries.”

 

A quick analysis of that list demonstrates where my priorities are; and that is with improving the life for the poor anywhere. That’s how I decide who I’m going to support when I vote. I decide this way because I grew up poor. Until you take care of basic needs like food and shelter, it’s really hard to focus on things like, say, whether the boys are taking me seriously in boardroom debates (spoiler alert: I’m not getting invited to any boardrooms). Working class women rarely have favorable working conditions and they don’t expect to, and the men don’t either. They don’t have paid leave. Childcare. Access to medical care. Any workplace protections against exploitation, including gender based exploitation (this one you can thank the killing of unions for, a process that began in the 80s and which the Clinton’s continued and will likely continue). Up until very recently, I’ve been both food and housing insecure. My concerns in politics continue to be dominated by preventing that both personally and collectively. For the first time in my lifetime, we have a candidate whose central focus is preventing that.

 

We’ve actually grown less progressive on social and economic policies in the last few generations. Under your grandparents, they would have just called Sanders a Democrat. He’s not even anymore progressive, except perhaps on race and gender, than FDR, who was President during the last Depression. Sanders didn’t leave the party, the party left him and the rest of the economic progressives sometime in the 80s. Now we are facing the kind of economic insecurity that ushered in the Progressive policies in the 30s that we now take for granted. Republicans and the rest of the country were not any less bigoted in the 30s. Those policy changes were fought for, people died for them, and it was just as improbable to get FDR’s New Deal passed as it would be today. Fortunately for us, our grandparents had the fortitude to vote with their conscience. Additionally, for millions of Americans this economic situation is equally brutal to the ones facing our grandparents. The jobs report says one thing but the homeless numbers and the hunger numbers don’t lie. People are still struggling. People with jobs are struggling. And our social safety net is weaker than it was for Baby Boomers or Gen Xers. Things have actually gotten worse for the poor in my lifetime. My mom worked my entire life and I still went hungry and there seems to be a contingent of Democrats that is woefully out of touch with that reality. Some of the people who are voting for Sanders are people who see his approach as the most sensible way out of their situation. The only reason his policies aren’t considered mainstream here, unlike how he’d be portrayed in nearly every other industrialized country, is because America drank the neoliberal kool-aid and then forced it on everyone else. There is no doubt in my mind that Clinton has drank the kool-aid, and everyone else with power has too. If you genuinely believe that the neoliberal policies that began in the 80s is the best way to move forward for your community and self then I respect that. I disagree with you and I’d be happy to have a chat about it, but I respect it. But for the left to sit here and pretend like Sanders’ views are somehow outside the purview of the mainstream while not also challenging what that mainstream is and how it got to that point is disingenuous at best and red-baiting at its worse. If you truly believe in progressive policies, you should be rejoicing about return of the word socialist in a positive light. It has been a very long time since we’ve been able to be openly that progressive and it is a radical and significant cultural shift, one which benefits all progressives no matter where they sit on the spectrum.

 

 

Media representation in this election, like all previous elections, has been utter nonsense. Clinton certainly takes some bullets for being a woman but the Clinton campaign has also done everything in its power to ensure that Sanders is marginalized by engaging in Cold War tactics and basically ignoring his candidacy. Many Sanders supporters are frustrated not just with how Fox News treats Sanders and his positions, but also how MSNBC and Salon and Huffington Post have treated Sanders and his positions, from refusing to cover him at all to labeling his supporters in destructive and divisive ways that are going to hurt us if Hilary is the nominee in the general. I can’t even imagine how the media would have treated Warren if she had thrown her hat into the ring; she’s both more progressive and aggressive. And the vast majority of Sanders supporters, including the bros, would have backed her.

 

This election has also been dismissive of working class people in general. We DO vote (and we’d vote even more if you made the elections national or state holidays so we had time off work and if you provided transportation; maybe advocate for those things if you are really concerned with representative democracy). We DO read. And we DO think for ourselves. We have policy positions and we can vote outside narrowly defined demographic categories whose significance were determined and circumscribed on the same liberal campuses we don’t get to attend for a variety of economic and social reasons that only Sanders seems to be aware of. We are NOT all mindless bigots and those of us that are (AND NEWSFLASH: YOU HAVE THEM TOO!) vote for Trump, not Sanders. Many of us have long-standing commitments to a variety of Civil Right’s movements and see the Sanders candidacy as a continuation of that. Talking about the working class as though they are idiots you need to save from thinking, is precisely why the Democrats lose elections, why it is so easy for the Republicans to cipher off those votes, and is also incredibly frustrating to watch and to attempt to defend from my position. I met as many bigots with problematic views towards women, nonwhite people and the poor on the left as I did on the right and the folks on the right at Stanford would usually at least hear my arguments before grabbing the pitch forks or saying something immensely classist.

 

If you are a Hilary supporter and there are lots of reasons to be, that’s great. I still love you. I voted for Hilary in the 2012 primaries because I felt that her and Obama had remarkably similar positions and she was the one with the most experience and ability to actually carry them out. I then voted for Obama in the general, because I agreed with his positions. The difference this time around is that Sanders’ is actually closer to my views than Clinton is, so I’m voting for him. I think they have basically equally poor shots of carrying their positions out, but if their views were the same I’d vote for the one that I thought had better odds of carrying out policy. Their views are not the same and I have the right to vote based on policy position and so does everyone else. Be a Clinton supporter, she’s worked really hard and has been influential to me as a young woman. I get the appeal. I will vote for her if she is the nominee in the general but don’t tear down Sanders’ supporters. Defend her positions, defend her record, make a case for why she is the better candidate that holds her up as equal to the men. Because that’s the thing, Hilary is strong enough and smart enough that she doesn’t need us to qualify her positions or election by her gender, I judge her by precisely the same standards I judge the male politicians.

 

And that’s why lean Sanders.