Profile cover photo
Profile photo
Scott Cramer
83,148 followers -
"The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other's life. Rarely do members of one family grow up under the same roof." -- Richard Bach, Illusions
"The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other's life. Rarely do members of one family grow up under the same roof." -- Richard Bach, Illusions

83,148 followers
About
Posts

Post has shared content
Sharkcycle

+Michele C​, of course.

Post has attachment
Nataly Dawn and Lauren O'Connell, New Song

I've been a fan of Nataly Dawn for a while now; first came across her as a part of Pomplamoose. In the time honored tradition of marketing, it took me a thousand lyrical hits to the head to finally support her musical efforts in some way! Procrastination, thou name art Scott. That being said, I preordered the album for this song - AND now get my name printed in the thank you portion of the physical deliverable - turns out I'm into that sort of thing. Check her out, then join me so I can have some friend's names around mine; cause that would be even more cool. No matter what, enjoy the music!

Post has attachment
Death, life, thoughts, and a quote, not necessarily in that order.

Expounding on thoughts from a recent post.

There's a lot going on in the world. There always has been, even though it seems sometimes that our moment on this plane of existence is more tumultuous than any other; and maybe it is to us personally. There is a universal certainty, though, that we cushion in beliefs of religion or stoic acceptance of inevitability, or we avoid thinking about alltogether for whatever our fears or reasons. I do not care for dwelling on the fact that one day I will cease to be in this state as I am now; that daily entropy takes it's toll and eventually there will be no fuel left for my spark. However, thoughts creep in around the edges, let in ever more quickly with each aching muscle or popping joint or grey hair, if one is still rooted to hold any color. But I steadfastly try and remember that this dawning of thoughts and emotions each day is a meal comprised of the tastiest decadent treats imaginable, and to savor every bit before the plate has been depleted. You could certainly counter that your plate is filled with ill palatable substances or that you have no plate at all, or that someone has tainted what was originally set before you. I can not deny that it is different for every one of us. I can only choose for myself how to move forward, because move forward we all inexorably will. Part of my journey is to reconcile a journey, to be called such, inevitably has an end. Words such as those below by Mr. Dawkins, that sparked this essay, give me solace. For any who find interest in the flickering light from my path, I offer it up for your consumption also. Peace and love, friends.

"We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of Arabia. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton. We know this because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA so massively exceeds the set of actual people. In the teeth of these stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here. We privileged few, who won the lottery of birth against all odds, how dare we whine at our inevitable return to that prior state from which the vast majority have never stirred?"

Quote by Richard Dawkins from Unweaving the Rainbow: Science, Delusion and the Appetite for Wonder.
Photo

Post has shared content
Wow. Just wow.

Original post quote by Richard Dawkins will follow me through the rest of my days; and was just what I needed right now.

Thank you +Vicky Veritas​​​ and +Andreas Holzer​​!
"We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of Sahara. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton. We know this because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA so massively exceeds the set of actual people. In the teeth of those stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here. We privileged few, who won the lottery of birth against all odds, how dare we whine at our inevitable return to that prior state from which the vast majority have never stirred?"

Post has attachment
John Barrowman is Sparkly

Love John Barrowman. It will truly be a shame, and a lost opportunity, if he doesn't make an appearance soon!

As for 13, I'm over my initial chagrin that they cast it this time more as a statement and a stunt and am looking forward to how she does. Perhaps a statement/stunt is what it takes sometimes to move forward. As for people being upset at the decision OR those upset at anyone disagreeing with the new direction, it's a pretty big change; let it sink in to everyone. Let's remember why we care at all; a love of this wonderful Who universe.

Thanks +Jo Mills​ for the article, from a FB post!

Post has shared content
Factory Error

Love this!
http://luthyen1.deviantart.com/art/Factory-Error-361308878

Thanks +Mara Mascaro​ (pictured in this artwork hehe)!

Post has attachment
Game of Thrones: Libertarian Edition

THIS. Totally this. ;-)

Post has attachment
On Top of the World

A couple of feathered friends perched atop a pine tree. Edited in #Snapseed and applied #Prisma filter (#prismaspringlove).

#birds #naturephotography #topoftheworld

Post has shared content
Interesting take on Sanders strategy.
Vox, A Voice Of The Democratic Establishment, Now Realizes That Bernie Sanders Is The Democrats’ Real 2020 Frontrunner

During the 2016 campaign, Matthew Yglesias and Vox were often seen as a voice for Hillary Clinton and “Neoliberal Corporatism.” It is with this background that I find it significant that Yglesias now proclaims that Bernie Sanders is the Democrats’ real 2020 frontrunner. While many establishment Democrats continue to resist Sanders and his supporters to various degrees, there are signs such as this that others are acknowledging this reality.

The post by Yglesias makes some points which I have made in the past, leaves out some things of significance, and does have some interesting material which Sanders supports might not be aware of.

Yglesias does repeat a point I have made previously, both in the context of one reason why Sanders lost, along with an explanation for why Sanders went on to back Clinton and try to work with the establishment. It is important to understand how things looked before Sanders entered the race. Clinton’s nomination appeared inevitable and nobody (including Sanders) thought he had a chance. Sanders two main goals were to force Democrats to consider his economic views, and to strengthen his position in the party in order to push his priorities in the future. As Vox put it:

By the time it was clear the Sanders 2016 campaign had legs, it was already fatally hobbled. Almost no one believed in the summer and fall of 2015 that he stood any chance of beating Hillary Clinton — and that included Sanders himself. As Patrick Healy and Yamiche Alcindor reported last April, he “was originally skeptical that he could beat Mrs. Clinton, and his mission in 2015 was to spread his political message about a rigged America rather than do whatever it took to win the nomination” and only began to really focus on trying to win when his poll numbers unexpectedly soared in early 2016.

Consequently, labor leaders who sympathized with Sanders’s critique of Clinton didn’t give any serious thought to actually endorsing him. Instead, they used his presence in the race as leverage to extract concessions on issues like the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Cadillac tax on high-value health insurance plans from Clinton.

And since Sanders was running to raise the profile of his issues rather than to win, he didn’t bother to develop much in the way of answers to foreign policy questions, even though Clinton’s record of support for the 2003 invasion of Iraq and her hawkish instincts were some of her biggest vulnerabilities with the Democratic Party base.

Elected officials were almost uniformly afraid to endorse him, even if their policy views were closer to his than to Clinton’s, and left-of-center think tanks — including ones that are deliberately positioned to the left of mainstream Democrats ideologically — shied away from working with Sanders on policy development, for fear that Clinton’s wrath would destroy them if they did.

I would also add that the view that he could not win also affected Sanders’ early strategy. He continued to work in the Senate and initially only campaigned part time. If he realized how close the campaign would be he might have campaigned more in 2015, including going to the Super Tuesday states and work earlier to increase minority support. He might also have protested more about the lack of early debates, and made an issue out of Clinton’s scandals.

The lack of early debates also brings up another point which Yglesias ignored–the degree to which the nomination was rigged for Clinton from the start. There was undoubtedly pressure to clear the field for her, and Wikileaks made it clear that the DNC was not following their own rules about neutrality. This has further been confirmed in the class action lawsuit against the DNC.

Rules since McGovern, including Super Delegates and front loading the process with southern states, were specifically written to get a more conservative nominee. The irony is that they failed to change with the times, and these rules gave the Democrats a nominee who could not even beat Donald Trump, while harming a strong general election candidate such as Sanders when he did arise.

Rather than reverse the outdated rules, the Democrats instead altered the rules even further in 2016 to help Clinton. This included limiting debates, changing fund raising rules, and refraining from announcing the popular vote in Iowa, which Sanders probably won, as was done in 2008. Harry Reid’s actions in Nevada, at a time when he claimed to be neutral, also helped tilt the race towards Clinton. Despite the primary process, Hillary Clinton was chosen in back rooms by the Democratic establishment in 2016 in a manner which was little different than how parties picked their nominees in the proverbial smoke filled rooms in the past, ultimately costing the Democrats the election.

Things will be different in 2020. Yglesias also points to how Sanders is building a team to expand upon the issues he raised in 2008. As I noted again yesterday, among the major reasons I supported Sanders were his opposition to the Iraq war and the Patriot Act, as opposed to the major issues he campaigned on. A future campaign will hopefully include these issues. Yglesias wrote:

Earlier this year, Sanders — who doesn’t sit on the Foreign Relations, Armed Services, or Intelligence Committees — quietly added to his team Matt Duss, a veteran Middle East analyst known for looking askance at America’s tendency toward uncritical alliance with Saudi Arabia and Israel. It’s a clear sign that Sanders, who had a keen interest in left-wing foreign policy as mayor of Burlington but hasn’t had much of a profile on the issue in Congress, is serious about being able to play competently on the full spectrum of issues.

Sanders also picked up Ari Rabin-Havt, best known in recent years for his Sirius XM radio show but previously an adviser for Harry Reid in his early years as Democrats’ Senate leader.

While Sanders is deepening his team in Washington, his national political organization Our Revolution is diligently working to get Sanders supporters elected to state and local offices. Critically, the list of Our Revolution winners — a group that includes House members, state legislators, state party chairs, and even city council members — is quite ethnically diverse. His camp is aware that 2016’s African-American outreach strategy was flawed in both concept and execution, and he’s setting himself up to be able to count on black and Latino elected officials from all regions of the country as surrogates while also courting national leaders like the NAACP’s William Barber.

Yglesias also says that Sanders is moderating his views, but if true he does remain well to the left of Hillary Clinton. While Clinton campaigned against single payer health care, Sanders continues to push for Medicare-for-all. I cannot disagree with Yglesias when he points out that Sanders’ age could be a problem in 2020. We will have to wait and see if he is still up to running. The post did look at other possible candidates should Sanders not run, concluding by saying that “Among the Bernie faithful the most frequently named fallback candidate isn’t the well-known Warren or labor-liberal warhorse Sherrod Brown. It’s Nina Turner…”

Yglesias ended with a strong argument that “It’s time to take Bernie Sanders seriously”

The Democratic Party establishment is, in many respects, in worse shape than it realizes.

Sanders’s insurgent campaign revealed a Democratic Party electorate that is fairly eager to embrace an ideological champion as a progressive counterpoint to the decidedly conservative GOP. The notion of pragmatism continues to carry weight, but having lost control of all three branches of the federal government and blundered to a point where Democrats don’t control the state Senate in New York or the governor’s mansion in Illinois, party leaders’ credentials as strategic masterminds are in question.

Last but by no means least, relying on African-American voters as a bulwark against left-wingery, as Clinton did, is tenuous as black views on economic policy are generally quite left-wing. Democrats now rely heavily for votes on the large — and very Democratic-leaning — millennial generation that lacks clear political memories of the Cold War or the booming neoliberal economy of the 1990s, so “socialism” isn’t a scare word for them, even as it remains unpopular nationally.
Sanders became their champion over the course of 2016 and continues to hold that status now. But while in 2016 he faced a unified — and intimidating — opponent and launched with a ramshackle campaign, today he has a strong national political organization, a proven fundraising track record, and is moving decisively to address his weak points on international affairs, policy development, and minority outreach. Everyone agrees that in a perfect world he’d also wave a magic wand and scrape 10 or 15 years off his age, but that’s not possible. The movement he’s created lacks an obviously more compelling successor, and he continues to be broadly popular with the public.

Predicting the future is a mug’s game. But if Bernie Sanders runs again, he’ll be hard to beat. And as far as one can tell, he’s doing everything you would do to set yourself up to run again.

While I often disagreed with Yglesias during the 2016 campaign, this is a far more realistic viewpoint than he expressed previously, and far more realistic than the delusional account of the race which Peter Daou posted on Facebook today.

See full post for links:
http://liberalvaluesblog.com/2017/07/05/vox-a-voice-of-the-democratic-establishment-now-realizes-that-bernie-sanders-is-the-democrats-real-2020-frontrunner/

Post has attachment
If Congress was your coworker.

I should have posted this on July 4th.
This would be even funnier if it weren't completely true. Sigh.
Wait while more posts are being loaded