Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by PoisonSymic » 2018-05-04 12:56am

Simon_Jester wrote:
2018-05-03 08:06am
Soontir C'boath wrote:
2018-05-02 09:17pm
LOL @ identity politics.
In fairness, objecting to "make everyone promise not to run attack ads, then run attack ads" is the kind of thing people have been saying was wrong WAY before the days of identity politics.
But "Have everyone pledge to not run attack ads, then run attack ads against everyone who didn't agree to the pledge" is an logically optimized strategy if your objective is to incentivize candidates to actually reduce the use of attack ads. It's only "hypocritical" if your goal is to virtue signal that "attack ads are bad".
Pressuring a candidate not to run in the primary because you're worried they'd win it but lose the general may be obnoxious but it's not necessarily corrupt.
I would go further and say that it is arguably corrupt not to pressure popular but non-viable candidates not to run. The party's job, so to speak, is to select viable candidates that will advance its overall platform.

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by Soontir C'boath » 2018-05-04 01:49am

If this was the case, then it is highly strange to see so many seats lost to the Republicans. Funny, how that happens to be. Damned if we do, damned if we don't. It's not the establishment fault for putting forth these shitty candidates that don't respond to voters, it's the voters themselves who refuse to toe the party line after all.

Your definition of a viable candidate and your faith in the party to pick them is highly irrational.

If this was the case, we would've had Hillary and not Obama, and perhaps we would've actually have seen McCain in the White House as well. The fact that we are now so readily drop any sense of a democratic process means the baby has truly been thrown out with the bath water.

Let's also keep in mind that the article's election that is is all about has the Democratic pick lose twice already.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by Soontir C'boath » 2018-05-04 02:11am

I mean shit, who fucking knew the 2016 Republican Presidential primary would be more democratic than the Democratic primary. Guess who's reaping the award now? It's not us. No sirree. Though of course, I suppose this is not necessarily true either. It was Clinton's strategy to pump up Trump in the media to drown the other Republican candidates, now that I remember this tidbit.
I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro's great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen's Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to "order" than to justice; who constantly says: "I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action"; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man's freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a "more convenient season."

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 01:53pm

Soontir C'boath wrote:
2018-05-03 10:34pm
The point is that, they refuse to stand on policy that would surely garner them brownie points with the base, but their wealthy donors don't allow them to do so because they know it's another step to actually passing them. Gay marriage is a great example of this across the state legislatures, but apparently fiscal policy cannot be touched. Only social issues. These are circumstances I understand which is why we need to get money out of politics and that includes the politician as well.
These are genuine problems in the Democratic Party that must be addressed, but there is a range of opinions and positions in the party, and I'd rather we acknowledge that than painting all Democrats with a single brush, saying they're just like Republicans, and calling it a day. Which contributes absolutely nothing positive to our political discourse as a nation, but does serve to fuel a culture of general cynicism and contempt towards democracy. That's all I'm saying here.

I probably wouldn't be so bothered by this if "the Democrats are just like the Republicans, they're all corrupt" wasn't a narrative that was deliberately and systematically used less than two years ago to split the vote and help get Trump elected.
The only flip side is that we confirm a bunch of stuff that Republicans want and we are left with crumbs in return. That's the flip side because we've all been told that Democrats need to pull more Republican to get more votes to win come election time.
See above.

That said: I believe in the necessity of the big tent strategy, but that only works if you're actually appealing to a broad range of voters. You're not wrong that the Dems. need to stop valuing "moderate" Republican votes at the expense of their base.

This, I think, is partly a holdover from the '80s/'90s, a mentality that the old guard has never really grown out of.
lol Obama rolled like a dog on Obamacare if you care to remember and the Republicans and Dixiecrats kept voting against practically everything else, but yes ok, "circumstances" matter. *cheers*
There's no need to be so snide just because I try to actually acknowledge the nuances of American politics.

Obamacare got passed, and it included some genuinely needed reforms. It wasn't nearly enough, it was a compromise basically nobody liked, but it was more than anyone else did for decades on the issue. And it burned most of the Dems political capital and cost them a Congressional majority, so we've had to spend a decade-long battle trying to keep the Republicans from scrapping it.

That said, the political climate has changed now, and if we get a Dem majority and President in 2020, I'd absolutely fault them for not pushing single payer through. And I've stated before that I believe that the party should adopt Single Payer as a major part of its platform.
Of course circumstances matter, I have Flagg (? I'm assuming that's him) still bitching about Bernie not being an actual Democrat, whatever that means nowadays anyway, rather than caring about what policies are actually being pushed, so there are voters who have to see things differently than the current state.
I don't think Flagg posts here any more.
I have people here who are perfectly fine with the Democratic Party rigging elections because apparently the party has to be pure to the status quo and not to actual Democratic policy.

I am fully fucking aware that circumstances matter.
Who, on this board, has ever said that they are fine with the Democratic Party rigging elections? I've seen a few who denied that such rigging occurred, but I can't recall anyone actually defending it.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by Simon_Jester » 2018-05-04 02:57pm

PoisonSymic wrote:
2018-05-04 12:56am
Simon_Jester wrote:
2018-05-03 08:06am
Soontir C'boath wrote:
2018-05-02 09:17pm
LOL @ identity politics.
In fairness, objecting to "make everyone promise not to run attack ads, then run attack ads" is the kind of thing people have been saying was wrong WAY before the days of identity politics.
But "Have everyone pledge to not run attack ads, then run attack ads against everyone who didn't agree to the pledge" is an logically optimized strategy if your objective is to incentivize candidates to actually reduce the use of attack ads. It's only "hypocritical" if your goal is to virtue signal that "attack ads are bad".
Is the underlined strategy described in your quote what actually happened, in the incident Ritterin Sophia described in Texas?

From her description, I'd gathered that the DCCC pressured everyone into signing the pledge, and then and only then broke the pledge as a way of targeting the leftmost candidates (who had themselves signed the pledge).

Is that incorrect? Could you provide some evidence?
Pressuring a candidate not to run in the primary because you're worried they'd win it but lose the general may be obnoxious but it's not necessarily corrupt.
I would go further and say that it is arguably corrupt not to pressure popular but non-viable candidates not to run. The party's job, so to speak, is to select viable candidates that will advance its overall platform.
Failing to pressure inviable candidate to not run might be incompetent, but it wouldn't be corrupt.

Corruption implies an unethical action performed for the benefit of some particular person or group, usually oneself. Simply making a bad decision, or failing to correctly do one's job, in a way that does not benefit them, would not be corrupt. Just incompetent.

For example, if a tree-trimming crew from the power company comes by and you pay the crew a thousand dollars to 'accidentally' drop a tree on my house because you're tired of putting up with my loud stereo, that's corrupt. Deliberately dropping the tree on my house was unethical, and the crew was doing it for direct benefit of some outside parties- namely you, and themselves.

If the crew just randomly fucks up and drops a tree on my house, that is not corruption, because no one got any benefits out of the deal.

Cipolla's Laws of Stupidity apply here. Consider the difference, in Cipolla's theory, between a stupid person and a bandit. Stupidity causes incompetence; corruption is the province of the bandits.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 03:00pm

Well, the implication, I suppose, is that the Dems. are pressuring out progressive candidates not due to misplaced concerns about electability, but because they've been bought by lobbyists. If that was the case, it would qualify as corruption by your definition, would it not?
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by Zaune » 2018-05-04 05:53pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-04 03:00pm
Well, the implication, I suppose, is that the Dems. are pressuring out progressive candidates not due to misplaced concerns about electability, but because they've been bought by lobbyists. If that was the case, it would qualify as corruption by your definition, would it not?
The two motives aren't mutually exclusive. I wouldn't be surprised if there are a lot of lobbyists in the employ of various Democrat PACs giving talks about how they've got to pick moderate and sensible candidates beause otherwise there'll be a huge media backlash and anyone who stands to eat some higher taxation will continue to throw money at the Republican candidate even after he's photographed at a cross burning because they're that scared of Socialism... And to be fair, that's probably true, as we discovered in this country soon after Labour decided to experiment with being a centre-left party again.

But what doesn't seem to have sunk in yet is that those tactis don't actually work all that well anymore, not in this day and age when anyone with the level of research and critical-thinking skills expected to get a passing grade on your high-school History classwork can poke holes in a biased news story with nothing but a search engine and a free afternoon. Not everyone has the initiative or the imagination to actually bother doing so, of course, but the people who do bother tend to make a lot of noise about what they find.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 06:09pm

Zaune wrote:
2018-05-04 05:53pm
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-04 03:00pm
Well, the implication, I suppose, is that the Dems. are pressuring out progressive candidates not due to misplaced concerns about electability, but because they've been bought by lobbyists. If that was the case, it would qualify as corruption by your definition, would it not?
The two motives aren't mutually exclusive. I wouldn't be surprised if there are a lot of lobbyists in the employ of various Democrat PACs giving talks about how they've got to pick moderate and sensible candidates beause otherwise there'll be a huge media backlash and anyone who stands to eat some higher taxation will continue to throw money at the Republican candidate even after he's photographed at a cross burning because they're that scared of Socialism... And to be fair, that's probably true, as we discovered in this country soon after Labour decided to experiment with being a centre-left party again.
To an extent, yes.
But what doesn't seem to have sunk in yet is that those tactis don't actually work all that well anymore, not in this day and age when anyone with the level of research and critical-thinking skills expected to get a passing grade on your high-school History classwork can poke holes in a biased news story with nothing but a search engine and a free afternoon. Not everyone has the initiative or the imagination to actually bother doing so, of course, but the people who do bother tend to make a lot of noise about what they find.
The thing is, it doesn't work so well because we've tried safe Center-Left/Centrist candidates, and it worked for a while, but they're no longer delivering enough, quickly enough, to deal with the problems they're facing. And even their superior electability has been called into question by Clinton's loss to Trump.

Now, in fairness, there are many reasons why Clinton lost, including voter suppression, outright foreign interference in the election, and Clinton's own personal baggage and relative lack of charisma. And, yes, racism and sexism. And the impact of that loss is somewhat diminished by the fact that she technically won the popular vote- just not in the "right" states (thank you Electoral College for ensuring that their are only a dozen states who's voters actually get a real say :finger: ).

But at the end of the day: we ran a more Centrist candidate, and they lost. To Donald. Fucking. Trump. To a reality show host who makes lewd comments about his daughter, got taped bragging about how he could get away with molesting women, and couldn't properly repudiate an endorsement from the fucking Klan. That there ought to be a real wake-up call. For that matter, the fact that Bernie Sanders could be semi-competitive in the Democratic primary despite the fact that he was an independent, running against probably the most well-known and heavily establishment-backed candidate in the country, ought to have been a wake up call. And for some people, it was. But for others, the message still hasn't sunk in. They haven't figured out that the old socialist bogey man isn't a bogeyman any more for a larger percentage of the voters, but an actual viable political force.

Edit: And, yes, I don't doubt that there are some who have figured it out and are scarred stiff by it, either because they genuinely believe that socialism is a menace, or because it means the prospect of losing their office/funds from corporate lobbyists.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 06:14pm

In part, of course, its a generational divide, between the old guard who grew up in the Cold War and lived in a time when Socialism was the great dirty word in American politics, and the younger generation who likely don't associate socialism with an existential threat (and who overwhelmingly supported Bernie in the primary). Which makes me think that this is something that will likely change with time, unless all the young progressives quit the party in disgust and squander their potential future influence on third party spite votes or not voting. Hopefully that's not where this is heading.
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"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 06:21pm

Soontir C'boath wrote:
2018-05-04 02:11am
I mean shit, who fucking knew the 2016 Republican Presidential primary would be more democratic than the Democratic primary. Guess who's reaping the award now? It's not us. No sirree.
And not the Republicans, either, really. They got to become the party of Trump, which means they end up as the new Fascist Party of America, and either get to play the lapdogs to a deranged bully, to be thrown under the bus when their no longer useful to Dear Leader's ego, or they get hammered in the next election. I mean, its not a coincidence that Congressional Republicans are resigning in droves.

I don't shed a tear for the fuckers, who brought it on themselves. But they ain't coming out of this winners either. Nobody won in 2016, even if they don't know it (well, except maybe Putin). There's just different kinds of fucked.
Though of course, I suppose this is not necessarily true either. It was Clinton's strategy to pump up Trump in the media to drown the other Republican candidates, now that I remember this tidbit.
And the lesson here is: Never prop up the worst candidate in the primary because "They'll be the easiest to beat in the general election." Because sometimes, the worst candidate actually wins.
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"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by Zaune » 2018-05-04 06:41pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-04 06:09pm
But at the end of the day: we ran a more Centrist candidate, and they lost. To Donald. Fucking. Trump. To a reality show host who makes lewd comments about his daughter, got taped bragging about how he could get away with molesting women, and couldn't properly repudiate an endorsement from the fucking Klan. That there ought to be a real wake-up call. For that matter, the fact that Bernie Sanders could be semi-competitive in the Democratic primary despite the fact that he was an independent, running against probably the most well-known and heavily establishment-backed candidate in the country, ought to have been a wake up call. And for some people, it was. But for others, the message still hasn't sunk in. They haven't figured out that the old socialist bogey man isn't a bogeyman any more for a larger percentage of the voters, but an actual viable political force.
Quite so. But tell that to the party leadership of the Democrats, which I dare say has at least as many old fossils who haven't had a new idea since the Reagan administration but are too stubborn to make way for someone younger as their opponents. And doing anything about that requires fighting the traditionalist wing of the Democrats nearly as much as fighting the Republicans, perhaps more so in the US because your political parties are much more loosely organised than ours with less actual control over who stands as a candidate.

And at some point, the question will have to be asked: Is fighting to change a party culture that's outright hostile to the campaign platform the progressive wing wants to run on really any easier or more worthwhile than just starting afresh with a party of its own? It's good and healthy for a political party to have a broad spectrum of opinions that lead to debate and compromise, but if the factionalism has got to the point where people are resorting to dirty tricks to win the argument then the divisions might not be reconcilable.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 07:55pm

Zaune wrote:
2018-05-04 06:41pm
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-04 06:09pm
But at the end of the day: we ran a more Centrist candidate, and they lost. To Donald. Fucking. Trump. To a reality show host who makes lewd comments about his daughter, got taped bragging about how he could get away with molesting women, and couldn't properly repudiate an endorsement from the fucking Klan. That there ought to be a real wake-up call. For that matter, the fact that Bernie Sanders could be semi-competitive in the Democratic primary despite the fact that he was an independent, running against probably the most well-known and heavily establishment-backed candidate in the country, ought to have been a wake up call. And for some people, it was. But for others, the message still hasn't sunk in. They haven't figured out that the old socialist bogey man isn't a bogeyman any more for a larger percentage of the voters, but an actual viable political force.
Quite so. But tell that to the party leadership of the Democrats, which I dare say has at least as many old fossils who haven't had a new idea since the Reagan administration but are too stubborn to make way for someone younger as their opponents. And doing anything about that requires fighting the traditionalist wing of the Democrats nearly as much as fighting the Republicans, perhaps more so in the US because your political parties are much more loosely organised than ours with less actual control over who stands as a candidate.

And at some point, the question will have to be asked: Is fighting to change a party culture that's outright hostile to the campaign platform the progressive wing wants to run on really any easier or more worthwhile than just starting afresh with a party of its own? It's good and healthy for a political party to have a broad spectrum of opinions that lead to debate and compromise, but if the factionalism has got to the point where people are resorting to dirty tricks to win the argument then the divisions might not be reconcilable.
Is it any easier?

Abso-fucking-lutely.

Let me put it this way:

The Greens and Libertarians (the next-strongest parties) would be having a phenominal year if they broke five percent nation-wide. Bernie got about 45% in the Democratic Primary, starting with fairly low name-recognition and basically no campaign funds or infrastructure, against a candidate who had overwhelming party, corporate, and media backing, and the presumption that she would be the nominee going back years.

Which do you think is the steeper hill to climb?

But you say "start a new party". Alright. Are all the progressives going to agree to join in that new party? Or (more likely) will they simply continue to factionalize, with some going to the Greens, some to the Libertarians, some doing spite votes for Trump, some giving up and not voting, others forming multiple new minor parties, some staying with the Democrats, etc?

And then, even if they pulled it off... remember that scenario I posted earlier?

30% Progressive Party.
30% Democratic Party.
40% Republican Party.

How are you going to form a large enough voting block to win a national election, when such a party would, realistically, mainly draw in people who prize ideological purity over the compromises necessary to build a big tent party? This is basically the problem the Greens and Libertarians have (well, that and running conspiracy nuts in place of serious candidates).

Then you have to look at the demographics. Every year, the old hidebound Centrists in the Democratic leadership will get fewer, and the Progressives will get more numerous. Unless the young Progressives voluntarily politically neuter themselves by taking their marbles and going home because they didn't manage to go straight from zero to total victory in one election cycle. If that happens, my generation will likely be responsible for driving the final nail in the coffin of American democracy and ensuring a Neo-Fascist one-party state, and Progressivism will die of a self-inflicted wound. I hope that doesn't happen.

There is absolutely no pragmatic argument for progressives abandoning the Democratic Party to form a third party given the situation in American politics. None. A big tip off should be the fact that Trumpers and Russia deliberately encouraged progressives to do more or less what you're suggesting in 2016. I tend to think that a good rule to follow is "Don't take strategy advice from people with a vested interest in your destruction."

Yeah, dealing with the bullshit in the Democratic Party is deeply frustrating, but Progressives going third party isn't going to help us. It only makes sense for a Progressive to do that if they've given up on actually accomplishing anything, and just want to vent their rage at the Democrats (and even then, if I was going to vote based on shear spite, I'd rather spite the Republicans). And in the process, it makes things harder for the rest of us.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 08:04pm

Also, to be clear, when I talk about making compromises to build a big tent party, I mean actual compromise. Where all parties get something, and all parties give something. Not "Progressives shut up and stay in line, while the Centrists set the agenda." The Centrist types and Clinton supporters who seem to want that are every bit as in the wrong as the "Bernie or Bust" types who want to destroy the party if they don't win.

You need a big tent to win, but you need to actually offer something for everyone in order to have a big tent.
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"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by aerius » 2018-05-04 08:15pm

I'd argue that BOTH parties in the US along with the entire government and election system are broken beyond repair and need to be burned to the ground and rebuilt from the bottom up. Constitution needs a serious rewrite as well.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 08:36pm

aerius wrote:
2018-05-04 08:15pm
I'd argue that BOTH parties in the US along with the entire government and election system are broken beyond repair and need to be burned to the ground and rebuilt from the bottom up.


And both Republican and Russian operatives (you know, the ones you refuse to acknowledge existed) made use of this exact argument to put Donald Trump in the White House.

Its an effective argument, though, because it appeals to an ugly but common part of human psychology, particularly among angry and frustrated people. Purge the evil, then build a new and better world on the ashes. This is the basic psychology underlying pretty much every apocalypse prophecy/myth ever. Its an alluring fantasy precisely because it promises a quick, simple, emotionally cathartic solution to complex problems. It is, however, an illusory one.

Its a pretty poor basis for political policy though. Because its a lot easier to burn things down than to build them up again, and usually, when you burn everything down, what you're left with is a lot of ashes and charred corpses. Especially since its unclear to me how you imagine the "entire government and election system" could be "burned to the ground" without, you know, literally burning things to the ground.
Constitution needs a serious rewrite as well.
I don't disagree on this one. Personally, I support amendments to:

1. Abolish the Electoral College and institute a nation-wide popular vote system.

2. Create stronger protections of voting rights including making voter registration automatic and requiring paper mail ballots.

3. Institute some federal oversight of the primary process to ensure fair votes.

4. Scrap Citizens United.

5. Restrict or abolish the President's power to pardon, particularly in situations where there is a conflict of interest.

6. Modify the Second Amendment to facilitate greater gun control.

7. Prohibit the President from conducting a nuclear first strike without conferring with Congress.

8. Guarantee equal pay and protection under the law for women.

I just don't imagine that the most effective way to accomplish any of these things is by following the Joker Doctrine.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 08:42pm

Actually, I'd probably be okay with triggering a Constitutional Convention, if not for the fact that right now most of the government at both the Federal and State level is in the hands of people who would use it as a chance to enshrine a pseudo-Fascist theocracy in our highest laws. If that changes... well, it would be a very dangerous move with unpredictable consequences, but it is an option which is legally provided for, and perhaps overdue to be used.
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"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by PoisonSymic » 2018-05-04 08:49pm

Simon_Jester wrote:
2018-05-04 02:57pm
PoisonSymic wrote:
2018-05-04 12:56am
Simon_Jester wrote:
2018-05-03 08:06am
In fairness, objecting to "make everyone promise not to run attack ads, then run attack ads" is the kind of thing people have been saying was wrong WAY before the days of identity politics.
But "Have everyone pledge to not run attack ads, then run attack ads against everyone who didn't agree to the pledge" is an logically optimized strategy if your objective is to incentivize candidates to actually reduce the use of attack ads. It's only "hypocritical" if your goal is to virtue signal that "attack ads are bad".
Is the underlined strategy described in your quote what actually happened, in the incident Ritterin Sophia described in Texas?

From her description, I'd gathered that the DCCC pressured everyone into signing the pledge, and then and only then broke the pledge as a way of targeting the leftmost candidates (who had themselves signed the pledge).

Is that incorrect? Could you provide some evidence?
I meant as a general case principle, because Sophia mentioned that this happened in Texas but provided no specific references.

I tried to look it up in response to your request for evidence, but couldn't find anything verifying that there was a general pledge not to run attack ads (much less the actual text of such an agreement). The only "attack" I could find the DCCC launched was posting opposition research justifying their decision to oppose one candidate in the seven-way primary.

Several media articles opposing this move claimed that it was an break from the DCCC's general habit of neutrality and counterattacked the points of evidence that the DCCC presented, but did not mention violation of any formal pledge or promise. Given how vehement a lot of those articles they are, I'd argue that this is at least implicit evidence that no such pledge existed, because surely they would have trumpeted it from the rooftops along with the rest of their attacks on the DCCC.

Moreover -- even if the attack ad pledge existed, I'm not sure I agree that opposition research counts as an attack ad. It would violate a strict neutrality pledge, but no one is claiming such a pledge actually existed.
I would go further and say that it is arguably corrupt not to pressure popular but non-viable candidates not to run. The party's job, so to speak, is to select viable candidates that will advance its overall platform.
Failing to pressure inviable candidate to not run might be incompetent, but it wouldn't be corrupt.

Corruption implies an unethical action performed for the benefit of some particular person or group, usually oneself. Simply making a bad decision, or failing to correctly do one's job, in a way that does not benefit them, would not be corrupt. Just incompetent.
That is a good point, so let me revise my position accordingly: pressuring a non-viable candidate to drop out of the primary is exactly what the Democratic Party should do.

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by PoisonSymic » 2018-05-04 09:05pm

Soontir C'boath wrote:
2018-05-03 08:56pm
One of the fundamental problems of American politics is that we have, at the national level, two viable parties: one of them is good at governing (relatively speaking), and the other is good at getting into office.
Again, you're all being too nice. This is assuming Democrats actually gave a fuck about you and me.
My experience is that -- as a general rule -- hard-right types are maniacally obsessed with hating people like me, moderate-right types can be convinced to support at least limited civil rights by framing it as "fairness" rather than "entitlement", moderate left types sincerely care about supporting my civil rights, and hard left types hate me for "being in the way" of whatever ideological purism is their Flavor of The Day.

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by Zaune » 2018-05-04 09:07pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-04 08:04pm
Also, to be clear, when I talk about making compromises to build a big tent party, I mean actual compromise. Where all parties get something, and all parties give something. Not "Progressives shut up and stay in line, while the Centrists set the agenda." The Centrist types and Clinton supporters who seem to want that are every bit as in the wrong as the "Bernie or Bust" types who want to destroy the party if they don't win.

You need a big tent to win, but you need to actually offer something for everyone in order to have a big tent.
That's all very well, but actual compromise is only possible when both sides are willing to deal fairly and in good faith. Now as a former Occupy protester I would be the first to acknowledge that the far-left is not good at backing down over a deeply-held matter of principle even when it would be in their interests to do so, but if the behaviours being discussed in this thread -particularly the attack-ad pledge incident- are not isolated, unsanctioned acts of a small number of individuals* then it's not the progressives who are the unreasonable ones. There's no point negotiating with someone who will go back on their word as soon as doing so becomes more convenient than keeping it.

* If they are isolated, unsanctioned acts then that's great, but I'm not holding my breath.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 09:16pm

PoisonSymic wrote:
2018-05-04 08:49pm
That is a good point, so let me revise my position accordingly: pressuring a non-viable candidate to drop out of the primary is exactly what the Democratic Party should do.
Problem is, who defines "non-viable"? The Progressives think Centrists are non-viable, and the Centrists think Progressives are non-viable. A lot of people thought Hillary was more viable than Bernie (or vice versa). We'll never know for certain, but we do know that she lost.

There is also a real risk of backlash from voters, who rightly object to anything that smacks of a rigged game where there is a pretense of being able to choose their nominee but in fact the choice has already been made for them.

Of course, there are also different degrees of pressure. Democrats choosing to endorse one candidate over another- fine. Setting different sets of rules for different candidates, or trying to suppress votes- not fine.
Zaune wrote:
2018-05-04 09:07pm
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-04 08:04pm
Also, to be clear, when I talk about making compromises to build a big tent party, I mean actual compromise. Where all parties get something, and all parties give something. Not "Progressives shut up and stay in line, while the Centrists set the agenda." The Centrist types and Clinton supporters who seem to want that are every bit as in the wrong as the "Bernie or Bust" types who want to destroy the party if they don't win.

You need a big tent to win, but you need to actually offer something for everyone in order to have a big tent.
That's all very well, but actual compromise is only possible when both sides are willing to deal fairly and in good faith. Now as a former Occupy protester I would be the first to acknowledge that the far-left is not good at backing down over a deeply-held matter of principle even when it would be in their interests to do so, but if the behaviours being discussed in this thread -particularly the attack-ad pledge incident- are not isolated, unsanctioned acts of a small number of individuals* then it's not the progressives who are the unreasonable ones. There's no point negotiating with someone who will go back on their word as soon as doing so becomes more convenient than keeping it.

* If they are isolated, unsanctioned acts then that's great, but I'm not holding my breath.
I don't think they're isolated acts, but I also don't think they represent the entire Democratic Party, to the extent that internal reform is impossible. There are deep, systemic problems with the Democratic Party, but the question is what the most effective way of addressing those problems is. I laid out my best case for why I think that trying to reform the Democratic Party from within is a more viable approach than trying to split off and form a third party.

I think the fact that Bernie Sanders did as well as he did, against the opposition he faced, from such a weak starting position, shows that internal reform by progressives is possible- especially given that demographic trends may favor us in the long-term.

And, at the end of the day, Centrist Democrats may be spineless and ethically-compromised, but we do honestly have more common ground with them than with Republicans.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by PoisonSymic » 2018-05-05 02:43am

Zaune wrote:
2018-05-04 09:07pm
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-04 08:04pm
Also, to be clear, when I talk about making compromises to build a big tent party, I mean actual compromise. Where all parties get something, and all parties give something. Not "Progressives shut up and stay in line, while the Centrists set the agenda." The Centrist types and Clinton supporters who seem to want that are every bit as in the wrong as the "Bernie or Bust" types who want to destroy the party if they don't win.

You need a big tent to win, but you need to actually offer something for everyone in order to have a big tent.
That's all very well, but actual compromise is only possible when both sides are willing to deal fairly and in good faith. Now as a former Occupy protester I would be the first to acknowledge that the far-left is not good at backing down over a deeply-held matter of principle even when it would be in their interests to do so, but if the behaviours being discussed in this thread -particularly the attack-ad pledge incident- are not isolated, unsanctioned acts of a small number of individuals* then it's not the progressives who are the unreasonable ones. There's no point negotiating with someone who will go back on their word as soon as doing so becomes more convenient than keeping it.

* If they are isolated, unsanctioned acts then that's great, but I'm not holding my breath.
I would point out that there is no evidence on the table that the "attack ad pledge incident" actually happened.

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-05 01:59pm

That's a good point, especially in the age of Fake News, on a topic which is rife with disinformation (from all sides).

Anyone care to provide a link?
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"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by PoisonSymic » 2018-05-05 09:03pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-05 01:59pm
That's a good point, especially in the age of Fake News, on a topic which is rife with disinformation (from all sides).

Anyone care to provide a link?
I've both posted and described all the evidence I could find on the matter:

1. No evidence of any formal pledge against attack ads.
2. No evidence that all candidates were pressured into signing such a pledge.
3. Evidence that the DCCC released opposition research against one candidate, not an "attack ad" per se.
4. No evidence that the DCCC launched attacks (ads or otherwise) on all of the "legitimately Leftist candidates".

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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by Simon_Jester » 2018-05-07 08:13am

More generally, I think the Democratic party apparatus should serve as a neutral reservoir of campaign expertise and resources that left-of-American-center candidates can draw on. Sometimes, one of the discouraging consequences of that kind of research will be "we really, really do not think this candidate can win the general election, or that they would be a liability in same." And in that case, they arguably have a responsibility to say so.

On the other hand, IF that is the goal, then more people in the party hierarchy should probably have been comfortable pointing this out in 2012-15- that Hillary Clinton might be tolerable to a lot of Democrats, but that she was one of the single least popular names in all of politics among Republicans and nonaligned voters, that she had relatively few enthusiastic supporters, vast numbers of furious detractors, limited ability to excite or mobilize the party base, and great ability to excite and mobilize the opposition.

It's not clear to me that the Democratic party apparatus prepared for that, which admittedly calls into question whether they are fit to judge which candidates are or are not electable.
PoisonSymic wrote:
2018-05-04 08:49pm
I meant as a general case principle, because Sophia mentioned that this happened in Texas but provided no specific references.

I tried to look it up in response to your request for evidence, but couldn't find anything verifying that there was a general pledge not to run attack ads (much less the actual text of such an agreement). The only "attack" I could find the DCCC launched was posting opposition research justifying their decision to oppose one candidate in the seven-way primary.

Several media articles opposing this move claimed that it was an break from the DCCC's general habit of neutrality and counterattacked the points of evidence that the DCCC presented, but did not mention violation of any formal pledge or promise. Given how vehement a lot of those articles they are, I'd argue that this is at least implicit evidence that no such pledge existed, because surely they would have trumpeted it from the rooftops along with the rest of their attacks on the DCCC.

Moreover -- even if the attack ad pledge existed, I'm not sure I agree that opposition research counts as an attack ad. It would violate a strict neutrality pledge, but no one is claiming such a pledge actually existed.
Well, I will extend Ritterin Sophia the common courtesy of assuming that events unfolded more or less as she described. However, I would certainly appreciate it if she could provide a more detailed description, and/or a link to such a description, of what happened.
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Re: Democratic Leader Recorded Pressuring Candidate to Drop Out of Primary

Post by Zaune » 2018-05-07 08:31am

Simon_Jester wrote:
2018-05-07 08:13am
More generally, I think the Democratic party apparatus should serve as a neutral reservoir of campaign expertise and resources that left-of-American-center candidates can draw on. Sometimes, one of the discouraging consequences of that kind of research will be "we really, really do not think this candidate can win the general election, or that they would be a liability in same." And in that case, they arguably have a responsibility to say so.

On the other hand, IF that is the goal, then more people in the party hierarchy should probably have been comfortable pointing this out in 2012-15- that Hillary Clinton might be tolerable to a lot of Democrats, but that she was one of the single least popular names in all of politics among Republicans and nonaligned voters, that she had relatively few enthusiastic supporters, vast numbers of furious detractors, limited ability to excite or mobilize the party base, and great ability to excite and mobilize the opposition.

It's not clear to me that the Democratic party apparatus prepared for that, which admittedly calls into question whether they are fit to judge which candidates are or are not electable.
Which brings up something I've been wondering about. How exactly does the process of determining which candidate is the "official" Democrat or Republican candidate work in a US election? A lot of this story is kind of bizarre from my point of view, because in this country political parties are only allowed to field one candidate per post, and aspiring candidates have to be approved by a selection panel.
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