Wednesday, January 02, 2019

Bigger Than Beto, Biden or Bernie

There's a whole lot of back and forth online about how it's sacrosanct to criticize Beto O'Rourke. Though Beto himself says he isn't running for President in 2020, he's been drafted by a whole lot of people who say he reminds them of Obama. Certainly he's a great speaker, and he's appealing to a whole lot of people. Too bad more of them aren't in Texas, or we wouldn't have Ted Cruz to kick around anymore.

A lot of people, including some Facebook friends of mine, see this as prime opportunity to stereotype progressives. It's our fault that Trump's President, evidently. Too many of us failed to vote for Hillary. Worse, a lot of people will vote for Jill Stein in 2020, and hand Trump the election once again. For the record, I voted for Hillary against Donald Trump, though I found her beyond unsatisfactory. Hillary said we would never, ever get universal health care, and that free college would benefit Donald Trump's kids, as though he'd send them to community colleges.

I understand Texas is different from the rest of the United States, and that you have to take different positions to be electable there. But there's nothing wrong with reporting facts, even if they're about Beto. I've seen a gaggle of articles saying that this was some sort of conspiracy from Bernie, or Bernie Bros, or whatever term they're using to stereotype progressives this week.

Here's something that David Sirota, crucified by a lot of non-progressive benefits for pointing out how much oil money Beto took, has not been mentioning--Beto's wife is not only a billionaire heiress, but also runs a charter school. Now again, this is Texas. Union's not a big thing down there. It's a little more important to me, to us, and to New York. Union's also kind of pivotal in America, if we want our children to have a shot at middle class. I haven't necessarily ruled out Beto, but I'd need to have a whole lot more detail on his national positions, in the unlikely event he were to run.

I keep recalling Joe Biden sitting by and watching Anita Hill get crucified up there. I don't recall his raising a peep when Arne Duncan declared Katrina to be the best thing to happen to NOLA education. His credentials are less than sterling.

Others are far worse. Cory Booker is a definite no for me. I don't care who he runs against. His education positions are horrendous, in line with Chris Christie, Betsy DeVos, and every hedge fund operator who hates us and everything we stand for. I can't cast a positive vote for anyone who works to dismantle public education, and if Democrats want to retake the presidency, they're gonna need a more effective battle cry than, "not Donald Trump."

Michael Bloomberg is tossing his billions around again, offering to take another hundred mil from his pocket change and buy himself the White House. Bloomberg called an effort to repeal term limits, twice affirmed by city voters, "disgusting," but went and bought himself a one-time exception. For Bloomberg, breaking the rules is disgusting unless he himself chooses to do it, in which case it's fine. This is the same kind of thinking we get from the current occupant of the White House.

We don't need another self-important billionaire making decisions for us. Bloomberg is a whole lot smarter than Trump, and therefore a whole lot more dangerous. Rudy Giuliani probably had wet dreams about mayoral control in NYC, but could never make it happen. Rudy was always suing everyone over perceived slights like not being able to bring his mistress into the home he shared with his wife and young children. Bloomberg is more focused and gets things done. Given he has no regard for the will of the people, that's pretty scary for me.

If the Democrats want to win, they aren't going to be able to just prop someone up who stands for little or nothing. 70% of Americans support Medicare for All, including 52% of Republicans. A majority of Americans would like to see free college tuition. Of course, American wants higher wages, and I'm not sure how long we can be fooled by trillion dollar, budget-busting bonanzas for those who least need it.

We're gonna need a Democrat who really stands with working people this time, not just anybody. The threat of another Trump term, or even another GOP term, is unacceptable. It's not enough, in America, to just get more votes than your opponent. We need to win the next race, and we need to make it worth winning.

The problem with a lot of Democrats is they toss out 1972, and say be careful, you don't want to repeat that. Actually, union was stronger, middle class was more vibrant, and despite all the turmoil, working people were not quite so up against it in 1972. Furthermore, George McGovern was absolutely right about Vietnam, and history proves it. He wasn't "radical." He was 100% correct.

It's time to replace that outdated paradigm with 2016. We certainly don't want to repeat that. If we can't learn from 2016, we deserve to lose.
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