A few thoughts, now that Bernie has said he will work with Clinton against Trump. I'm going to put aside all personal opinions, saying we ought to back Bernie-the-man-and-his-causes and not merely Bernie-the-candidate. You have to decide what's right for you. I'm merely observing, not trying to tell anyone how to think. Bernie has told us a thousand times, it's not about him, it's about his causes. I'm a chess player. I know how to rescue a bad position. It's all about the endgame. Clinton will be a deeply flawed candidate, we all know that. But if elected POTUS, there is a way to get what we want out of her.
I remember how bitter the fight was between Clinton and Obama back in 2008: it got so ugly the Clinton supporters marched out of DailyKos in a big huff. Clinton eventually got in step with Obama. Her price was becoming Secretary of State.
Bernie is going to the convention, firing on all cylinders. His price for getting on board with Clinton ought to be Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee. From the noises I'm hearing, that will probably be his price. That's an incredibly powerful position, a solid pair of locked knights, with Elizabeth Warren, whom I parenthetically hope will not take an offer of VP from Clinton. Yes, Warren as VP would be President of the Senate, but she would be far better off paired with Bernie as two progressive knights on the board. She's going to get a chairman's position too - if the Democrats can take the Senate.
I can only speak for myself, but I don't think I'm alone in saying I believe in Bernie Sanders because he believes in us, as ordinary people. He's stood alone against a host of evils and been on the right side of history every time. But he can't do it alone. This isn't just a presidential race. There's all the down ticket candidates to consider. The GOP will outspend the Democrats between now and November, it may go as high as 2:1 against us. But with that idiot Trump at the wheel, the GOP is in such serious trouble, and we're in such a great position, politically, we are in good shape to take the Senate and put a serious dent in the Republican majority in the House.
We need to keep a weather eye out for the GOP's next move. We need to back progressive candidates, as we've backed Bernie. Whatever happens, even if by some wonderful set of conditions, Bernie takes the Democratic nomination - Bernie won't be able to do it alone. We need a Democratic majority in the Senate for Bernie to grab the Budget Committee chairman position and Elizabeth Warren to get another such chair appointment. We don't know how it will work out at the convention, but Bernie is still on message. And if we want the sorts of changes Bernie wants, we will need progressives in the Senate.
Now I'm going to tell y'all a true story. I'm in Eau Claire County, Wisconsin. Went to the Bernie rally at Zorn Arena, bitterly cold day, snow coming down hard, in a long line. Political volunteers going up and down the line, with pamphlets on down ticket candidates. Including JoAnne Kloppenburg, who was running for Wisconsin Supreme Court against that weasel Scott Walker's political appointee, Rebecca Bradley, on the same ballot. Bradley, calling AIDS victim “degenerates” and “queers".
A fine judge, JoAnne Kloppenburg, good progressive, would have served as a mighty obstacle to Scott Walker's dismantling of good regulations.
So Bernie wins Eau Claire County handily, wins Wisconsin, too. JoAnne Kloppenburg loses.
Now you'd think the progressives and all those people who voted for Bernie would have been outraged by Bradley and voted for Kloppenburg. They didn't turn out in sufficient numbers. And now Weasel Walker got his little appointee elected to the State Supreme Court.
Bernie has always said it's about who runs the show. It's either Wall Street or Congress. Big Money or elected officials. If we want reforms, we will not get them by going big for the top of the ticket and ignoring the obscure little elections of people like Kloppenburg. The Big Money went for Bradley. Every piece on the chess board has a role to play. It's about winning, people.
You want to know why the Democratic Party has been letting us down? The simple, godshonest brutal truth? Because we've been letting them down. We make a lot of noises about being some big political tectonic shift, we're a big movement now - but when Obama got elected, and had a majority in the House and Senate, and got Obamacare passed - where did the Obama supporters go in the next election, 2010? They stayed their precious asses home. They thought their job was done! That was the most important Congressional election in a decade because that Congress was the one which rezoned voting districts. It was a census year. And because the Obama voters didn't turn out and keep Democrats in power, the GOP gerrymandered the living daylights out of the House. And we won't get a chance to rezone until 2020.
So now y'all know. The Democrats have no use for Hero Worshippers whose support for their candidate never has enough ass meat on it to vote for their down ticket candidates. And while this remains true, don't expect them to have any respect for us.
You say you're part of the Bernie Sanders movement? That's so wonderful. You're the future. Now act like it. Learn about your candidates. Vote for progressives. Be the movement.
-copypasta from a post I wrote in another context....
The practice essentially involves learning to observe the mind and influence its behavior so that ultimately you get to a point where you can intentionally place the mind on an object in a way that is stable, without the usual automatic refocusing of attention on new objects which tends to be the norm.
While it is a goal of the practice to get to the point where the mind can engage with persistent stability, the process of training the mind to do that is arguably the more interesting part of the processs, because you just sit there for extended periods of time noticing what is happening and trying to influence it, and seeing the results of sustained effort over days or months both in your ability to see what is going on, and in your ability to influence it effectively.
If you do this, at some point supposedly self-talk falls away without you having to do anything. I've found that there's some value in specifically noticing self-talk, because it usually comes up as a precursor to distraction, but the goal isn't really to stop self-talk. The insights Brad is talking about arise because in the process of learning to develop mindful stability, the mind is more able to notice the big picture and see the cracks in it, and also to notice the very small picture and see implications of what is happening down in the details.
Whether you are "doing it right" or not I don't know, but the progression I'm describing is something that can be done deliberately, and requires a great deal of practice, like learning to ski or ride a bicycle. For me at least the realizations that have arisen out of the practice have tended to be mundane, but useful. I haven't had any profound insights into the nature of reality, but I have learned a lot about myself and been able to redirect bad habits over time so that I'm engaging in a lot less self-sabotaging behavior than I used to. Still a work in progress though. :)
This lady wins the debate in a couple hundred words.
BONUS: Here's an archived copy of the 4chan discussion mentioned in the article:
#election2016 #feelthebern #hillary2016
I've been to enough events that are reported in the press, and am a subject matter expert in topics that are discussed in the press, so I have encountered quite a few press reports over the years that were obvious garbage.
Lest someone accuse me of tinfoil-hat-wearing, that's not where I think this comes from. Reporters have to report on a broad variety of things, and they don't have deep knowledge of those things. They are rewarded for stories that attract eyeballs, so finding the conflict in a story and highlighting it is basic self-interest, so basic that I would expect it to become unexamined habit over time. Reporters also have limited time to prepare stories, so we can expect them to take shortcuts.
And, of course, there are people who are close to the story in whose interest it is that the story be reported incorrectly. Which is probably what led to the rather remarkable set of reports shown in the attached photo.
What needs to happen is that the rules need to be changed. There's a pretty strong push for doing that at the grassroots level.
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