Bernie, Watch Your Back – DWS and the DNC

This ain’t rocket science folks. All you need is first grade math and the ability to tell time. The Republican National Committee (RNC) and its leader Reince Priebus have announced a Republican presidential debate schedule of nine debates, the first of which was broadcast to some 20 million viewers last Thursday night. 

In contrast, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, head of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) has announced a schedule of six debates to begin in October. 

Why so few debates and why the late start? I believe it is clear as day that the DNC and its chairwoman, DWS want to protect Hillary Clinton from scrutiny. They would prefer a coronation but since Bernie Sanders, Martin O’Malley, Jim Webb and Lincoln Chafee have announced their candidacies, that simply won’t happen. Sanders, in particular, has the pro-Clinton bunch worried as he trails her by only seven points in New Hampshire. 

The DNC wants Clinton challenged as little as possible. It’s shameful. It’s Debbie’s job to present fellow Democrats with a diversity of views so the best candidate can emerge. To do otherwise makes a mockery of the process. 

I’m calling on liberal organizations across the spectrum of left ideologies to launch their own debates and invite the candidates. If Debbie Wasserman Schultz is too corrupt to do her job, someone else has to. 

What do you think? The bar is open. 


The Folly of Expanding the Franchise 

Before our Constitution was amended, voting rights were basically left to the states and usually defaulted to property owners. Since then, amendments and federal legislation has expanded the right to vote to blacks, women and people between the ages of 18 and 21 with property ownership not a requirement.

After watching a focus group of Donald Trump supporters I’m beginning to think the notion of voting being an exclusive privilege rather than a right is the proper way to go. Bloomberg’s John Heilemann interviewed a focus group of Trump supporters. A few things became clear:

  1. Most had no idea of Trump’s prior, less conservative views on such things as healthcare and abortion rights.
  2. One said Trump was like one of us except for the rich part. That’s like saying a porcupine is like a kitty cat except for the needles.
  3. They liked that he was blunt and “honest” which gave him a pass for characterizing illegal immigrants as killers and rapists (and he “assumes” some good folks too).

In short, the group sounded like a bunch of thirteen year olds. That was their level of sophistication in choosing the next leader of the free world. Mind you, I don’t argue with some of their assessment. I like Trump’s in your face style. I like that he holds over all the other candidates their history of begging HIM for money and endorsement. But does that really qualify him for the biggest job in America?

Now before conservatives get their dander up, I admit this next-to-baseless infatuation is not unprecedented. In 2008, many Americans, including me, became enthralled with a man with near zero meaningful government experience. He had no executive experience. He was articulate, handsome, youthful and most of all black. Besides that, basically a blank slate. And millions, including me, fell in love and put him in the White House. How much CRITICAL thinking went into the decision? And I don’t mean stupid critiques like he was a closet Muslim. I mean serious consideration of his proposed solutions to our problems.

During this go-round I’m on slightly firmer ground but only slightly. I have rejected Hillary Clinton, a political operative and proven liar. But “my guy” has his own major weakness. While Bernie Sanders has a long legislative record and a consistent outlook, as a candidate he’s proven great at defining the problem but not as great at defining the solution. Forget foreign policy. It’s not his thing. I love his straight talk and I share his view of what ails us but how does that make me much different from the members of the Trump focus group?

Now I certainly don’t want to give up my right to vote. But do I work hard enough to make the right decision? Do you? Hasn’t our presidential selection process devolved into American Idol? I don’t know what the proper “test” is for voter eligibility but I have to admit that under the current come one-come all system, our country is probably not in the best of hands.

What do you think? The bar is open.


Bernie’s Black Barrier

At a Netroots gathering over the weekend Bernie Sanders was heckled by members of the Black Lives Matter campaign. On Monday’s edition of MSNBC’s “Ed Show”, Ed Schultz rightly pointed out Sanders’ strong support of civil rights, including protest marches in the 1960’s. He then asked expert black Michael Eric Dyson wassup with that?

Dyson’s reply was to ask Bernie the query made famous by Janet Jackson, “what have you done for me lately?”

I could have seen this coming a couple of weeks ago when Bernie eagerly accepted an invitation to Joe Madison’s Sirius/XM radio show “The Black Eagle”. Joe’s predominantly black call-in audience could not grasp Bernie’s economic plans. They wanted easy answers to address “the black man’s problem”. Then Bernie really blew it when he stumbled over Madison’s basically asinine question of whether President Sanders would apologize to blacks for slavery.

Bernie’s “black problem” is not his. The problem lies with blacks who don’t understand when white folks can’t find jobs, black folks sure as hell won’t find them. An economic prescription to save the middle class and ease entry into it, helps blacks and whites alike.

Hillary will most likely get the black vote. Why should she? What has she done for “the black community” that Sanders hasn’t? Moreover why should anyone do anything for the black community when helping the human community will automatically help blacks if they do their part. The reaction to Sanders, quite frankly, has me fed up with the Black Lives Matter movement.


Need proof? Look at the black on black crime rate in Baltimore and Chicago, just to name two cities. Our problem is we want black lives to matter TO WHITE PEOPLE. First, why should they when we don’t keep our own houses in order? Second, who cares what white people think of us? Will we accept second best until they “love us”?

Just because we got a seat at the lunch counter doesn’t mean we don’t have to pay for the lunch.

A prescription that reduces rich privilege (not white privilege) and guarantees a living wage and healthcare to all who do their part (and makes the criminal justice system even-handed) is what we need right now. There is no problem unique to black folks that Sanders’ plans will not at least partially alleviate.

If all blacks are looking for is a candidate who will apologize for slavery, and promise relief without responsibility, then Bernie is not your man. That’s your fault, not his. If you vote for another establishment candidate, you will wake up again four years from now asking, “what have you done for me lately?”

What do you think? The bar is open.