Tea leaves?

Discussion in 'Political Discussions' started by nosborne48, Aug 24, 2020.

  1. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Funny. I felt that way about the president who actually sold arms to terrorists.
  2. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    No argument there.
  3. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Carter administration brokered a major peace deal between Egypt and Israel. Camp David Accords was a huge achievement.
    He served in the navy, and as lieutenant left the navy in 1953. He took the office during low output with high inflation and unemployment.

  4. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    A frage...

    According to the surveys, people are voting FOR or AGAINST Donald Trump. That's about what one expects in a reelection scenario. Joe Biden does not have the large, enthusiastic nationwide Base that Mr Trump created in 2016 and enjoys today. But here's my question... Mr Biden has been in public office for decades including serving for eight years in national office as Vice President. How is it that after all this exposure and in the face of nearly universal name recognition that Mr Biden DOESN'T have a significant base of support? Hillary Clinton had many enthusiastic supporters nationwide. So does Bernie Sanders as remarkable as that might seem. Even Mayor Pete attracted dedicated followers. Are the Democrats essentially committing the cardinal political sin of trying to defeat "somebody" with "nobody"?
  5. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

    I hadn't thought of it that way before, but you're right. Clinton at least has some big fans, like Stanislav, whereas I've never heard a single Biden fanboi, like ever.

    On the other hand, she's also polarizing in a way that Biden doesn't seem to be. Some of that is probably because he's not on the business end of misogyny, but I think a lot of it is that he hasn't done a lot that people have ever heard of. I'm trying to think of something memorable that Biden did as vice president, and the only thing that occurs to me is that he supported marriage equality before Obama did (something I've always thought was a deliberate trial balloon). Otherwise the only thing people remember is the Crime Bill, and that's not much considering he's been in Washington longer than half of Americans have been alive.
  6. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    I disagree pretty strongly with the implicit premise there. Trump supporters (like myself) don't typically support Mr. Trump the man so much as we support the vision, values and agenda that he represents.

    Then-candidate Trump didn't just magically create a base through pure power of personality. He recognized a potential base that already existed and mobilized it. The American middle class, people who loved their country, history and values and felt some sense of patriotism. People who felt that they had been abandoned by both the Democrats and the Republicans, as both parties seemed interested only in securing the interests of some NYC-DC deep-state globalist axis that was driving not only them and their neighborhoods, but the whole country, into the ground. That was Donald Trump's brilliance in 2016. He has maintained his base because he continues to speak to its values and its interests.

    Can anyone point to anything that Joe Biden stands for? Anything that he passionately believes in? I think that most people see him as somebody who has been in Washington for 50 years, somebody who has played the game very well largely for his own and his family's benefit, and rose accordingly to Vice President.

    But the problem runs deeper than Joe Biden. Can anyone really define what the Democratic Party stands for in 2020? (Besides hysterical hatred of Trump?) One of the big challenges for the Democrats in 2020 is that people like AOC (a minor first-term congresswoman in real life), the ubiquitous BLM riots, destruction of historical monuments and the history they represent, and Kaepernicking the flag and all the symbols of the common identity that Americans of all races, classes and "genders" shared in common and could rally around, have all defined the Democratic party as the party of the most radical and anti-American extremes.

    I think that the reason why Biden won the nomination was that some of the brighter bulbs in the DNC realized that if the Democrats were going to win back their historical working-class base that was starting to abandon them, they needed to nominate a moderate able to pull the image of the Democratic party back towards the center. Biden was seen as a well-known and presumably well-liked figure who wasn't threatening and represented stability. It might have worked too.

    But in order for the moderate strategy to work, Biden would have had to have come out strong and impose his vision on the party. He would have to be able to drive the national narrative towards defining President Trump as a crazy loose canon incompetent and himself and the Democrats as the safer choice.

    Except that the Democrats' own left-base was having none of it. They rioted in the streets every night on national TV, screaming and attacking mindlessly. Democratic mayors and city councils nationwide tried to defend and justify the lawlessness. Police were vilified and Democratic DAs refused to prosecute arrested rioters. Thousands of small local businesses were put out of business and people started to die.

    At that moment Biden needed to be strong, he needed to take an unambiguous stand if the Democrats' recapture-the-middle strategy was to work. But Biden couldn't do it, appearing confused and doddering the few times he emerged from his basement blinking into the light. There's a sense that even if he was elected, Joe Biden wouldn't really be in charge. Which leaves the American electorate guessing about who might be. And given what's been happening that can be kind of scary and allows the imagination to run rampant.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2020 at 5:51 PM
  7. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

    Well, I agree to the extent that Trump's base consists of people who have been left behind economically, and also that Biden was perceived by DNC decision makers as the prominent Democrat best able to appeal to that group.

    You know when Trump supporters are mocked as a pack of illiterate racist morons? You just did the same thing, in reverse.

    No, American symbology does not unify. That's something you wish were true, not something that is true. It wasn't even true in the mythical good old days. The people who are out protesting day after day to end police brutality and misconduct -- mostly peacefully, despite what you might be shown on the news -- are not just a bunch of evil insane communist agitators who hate America.

    The really sad thing is that the people who support Trump because they've been on the wrong end of the system and the people who are out in the streets right now have a hell of a lot more in common than either think. You're right that the establishment has to go, but it's your common enemy. But when both left and right are succumbing to the calls to shout at each other and hate each other, they're not in a position to listen to each other and find that out.

    And that's no accident.
  8. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    Well. Here is a sub-question of my "frage". A major argument put forth in Biden's favor by various Democratic nabobs was that Biden is somehow "electable" and therefore the best candidate to beat Mr Trump in November. But how is being "electable" consistent with the aforementioned lack of a national base of enthusiastic supporters? Seems to me that a lack of a base would be a major red flag.
  9. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

    Maybe they rightfully perceived that Clinton lost because high negatives overcame having a fan base, and since Biden doesn't share that drawback he'd be better positioned to win?
  10. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

  11. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    A lot of fans of Biden, one just needs to look for them in another location.
    Try China ;-). Well not sure if any are regulars here on degree info.
    Maybe they are, one would need to check DDOS in the web server logs.
  12. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Maybe the agenda is to replace Biden, but if he is elected he may not want to leave and he will trick RHC and Harris who was unelectable and quit the race early- she had no chance until well the Dem's voters were forced to have her as VP.
    If Biden elected he will hold on to the office as long as possible.

    Biden doesn't have the "deplorables"
  13. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    I think that the strategy with Biden was probably that he would appeal to the kind of blue-collar and lower-middle-class voters that historically have been the Democrats' base and win many of them back from Trump. The kind of ancestral Democrats who historically have responded well to 'workers against the bosses' and 'the people against the fat-cats' appeals, but aren't so in-tune with rich Hollywood celebrities, Marxist professors, cancel-culture, disrespecting the flag and other symbols of national identity, eliminating the police and rioting in the streets.

    We are seeing exactly the same kinds of forces playing out in European politics, illustrated when so many traditionally Labour constituencies turned on Jeremy Corbyn. The 'little guys against the elites' thing was still going strong, but the smug cultural elitism out of London induced Labour voters to seek solace in populist voices instead of a party that now so openly despised them and everything they identified with and loved. (How Bojo successfully passed himself off as a populist is another story.)

    It was probably assumed by the DNC nabobs that even a moderate safe-and-sane Biden candidacy would hold on to most of the left since so many of them are seemingly motivated more by hatred of Trump more than by any coherent ideology. So where were the jilted lefties going to go? The Revolutionary Communist Party? There might be some drop-off in turnout among unenthusiastic activists, but that would be more than made up for by old-style union-voters and others like them flocking back home into the arms of the party they and their parents supported for generations. That was the hope.

    It might have worked too, if the left-base hadn't set about knee-capping the strategy right out of the gate, playing right into Trump's hands. And it might have worked if Biden had been more forceful in enunciating a vision more attractive than Trump's to the voters he needs.

    But Biden doesn't seem to have a vision (beyond 'I'm not Trump'). That's why Donald Trump generates excitement among those in tune with his vision and hence appears to have a base, and Joe Biden doesn't excite anyone.
  14. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    I think the comparison with the British Labour Party is apt.
  15. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    I'm confused. Which party has published its platform, and which simply pledged their support of their leader? I get them mixed up.
  16. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    Biden was terrific as Obama's point man on Ukraine, traveling to the country many times. What Obama admin did that was terrific is keeping pressure on Poroshenko to hold to their commitments to reform (which they tried to skirt in many ways in favor of more oligarchic ways of doing things - reflecting President Poroshenko's own career trajectory). Ol' Joe was a de-facto co-President of Ukraine in what was perhaps the most successful time in that country's independence. Of course, we squandered much of that. Joe, come back!

    It is telling whom Russian propaganda chose to demonize in 2014-2016. Back then, big bogeypeople were State Department employees Victoria Nuland and Jen Psaki, John McCain - and Joe Biden. (Hillary is on a whole other level as one of Putin's personal demons). I take it as a big endorsement :).
  17. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    Wait, where did I hear the "historic monuments" argument? Oh, that's right: in Russian and Russophile media, for decades. Of course, they mostly referred to this guy:

    Yes, this is Vladimir Lenin. And the argument is bulls#1t. 99.9998% of the pagan idols of that blood god have no historic value whatsoever (like, why this one in particular - in Kharkiv?); the purpose of putting them into public place (again, not a history museum or a library) was to assert dominance of one ideological group. So most people complaining about "destroying historic heritage" (and they still do) over these things are sympathetic of its message - either crypto-commies or adherents of Russian imperial idea. Maybe it's just me, but the parallel with the statues of slavery-defending traitors bent on destruction of the United States of America, erected decades after their death, is apparent.

    P. S. Kharkiv, an almost completely Russian-speaking city, remains firmly in Ukrainian control. Toppling Lenin seems to provide tangible benefits.
  18. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    It's a very politicized year, so I watch a bunch of political videos on YouTube. Many are from The New Turks, a leftie Internet channel. In 2016, Cenk & Anna spent most of their screen time bashing establishment Democrats and Hillary, with some obligatory "...and that trump guy is bad too, of course". They are still rabid lefties a bit to the left of Bernie, of course, and it felt they are fighting Democratic Party more than they are fighting the Republicans ... up until Bernie endorsed Biden. Now they are super-restrained towards the establishment, with only some barbs towards Pelosi. Even from Anna (the crazy Bernie chick who still hates Warren for "selling out"). It's a remarkable display of discipline.

    Biden will win. There is not nearly as much irrational hate towards him than towards Hillary, AND people feel that stakes are so much higher now
  19. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Platform? ignoring the voters and appointing someone for the VP who dropped from the race early due to not getting votes?
    What's so terrific in selling US sovereignty to the CCP? China is paying well, why do you think so many are afraid of President Trump?
    Because of what he is doing to their plans to sell America to China. Many are fear for their plans to get rich by selling US to China.
  20. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    "So many" had plans to "sell America to China"? I'm sorry, this is not a coherent or serious response.
    SteveFoerster likes this.

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