Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 13, 2016

How U.S. And UK "Liberals" Disfranchise Their Party Members

The "liberal" party establishments in the U.S. and UK, within the Democrats and Labour, are united in their distaste for party member opinions. They alone want to decide which positions the party has to take. They want to make sure that there is no alternative to their rule. It is elitism at its worst which no longer bothers with the pretense of democracy. Does it count as "shared values"?

Bernie Sanders folded. This without gaining any significant concession from Hillary Clinton on programmatic or personal grounds. (At least as far as we know.) He endorsed Clinton as presidential candidate even as she gave no ground for his voters' opinions. This disenfranchises the people who supported him.

Trump's attack lines on this are spot on:

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump - 7:01pm · 12 Jul 2016

Bernie Sanders endorsing Crooked Hillary Clinton is like Occupy Wall Street endorsing Goldman Sachs.


Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump - 7:03pm · 12 Jul 2016

Bernie sanders has abandoned his supporters by endorsing pro-war pro-TPP pro-Wall Street Crooked Hillary Clinton.

Those are valid statements. I find it hard to to argue with these.

Abstaining from any endorsement or running as independent or Green party candidate would have been more honorable ways for Sanders to admit defeat. It would have pressed the Democratic party to stop its movement to the right of the Republican party.

I expect the "Not Hillary" protest vote to be very strong in the November election. There is still more significant dirt to be dug up about her and her family foundation. Trumps current lows in the polls will recover when the media return to the "close race" mantra that makes them money. He still has a decent chance to win.

Then again - its the first time now that I have to concede that Clinton may well win. But that would be with a record low turnout, and record low legitimacy. There would be no wins for the Democrats in the Senate and House. She would be another Republican President who would represent only a record small slice of the electorate.

The election shambles on the other side of the Atlantic are no less depressing. "Corbyn can not win votes," is the claim of the anti-Corbyn Blairites. That is why they have to resort to dirty tricks to disenfranchise Corbyn voters. His supporters are not allowed to count in a Labour leadership election because they support him. How can such "logic" and this step be legal?

Jeremy Corbyn was jubilant after the party’s ruling national executive committee (NEC) decided his name should automatically appear on the ballot paper in the leadership contest triggered by Angela Eagle.
However, in a separate decision taken after Corbyn had left the room, the NEC ruled that only those who have been members for more than six months will be allowed to vote – while new supporters will be given two days to sign up as registered supporters to vote in the race, but only if they are willing to pay £25 – far higher than the £3 fee many Corbyn backers paid in the contest last year.

If that ruling stands nearly 100,000 new party members who have joined in support of Corbyn will either have to immediately pay a poll-tax of £25, or will not be allowed to vote. Here is what the Labour website promised them when they joined:

Corbyn may need some lawyers to set the NEC straight.

One can only hope that he wins the new Labour leadership election. The Labour establishment stinks like an Augias stable and the party needs a thorough house cleaning.

Posted by b on July 13, 2016 at 4:18 UTC | Permalink

« previous page

rufus avoids the issues; picks fight with "lame-ass poseurs" instead.

rufus' "long game" reminds me of the old joke about the company that loses money on each sale but plans to make it up on volume. LMFAO!

Sawant does argue for Socialist Alternative, rufus. But recognizes that GP is best positioned for this election.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 14 2016 4:13 utc | 101

Given the sort of invective tossed my way, even on this thread, I'm thinking "lame ass poseur" is pretty respectful.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 14 2016 5:00 utc | 102

@92 crazy I didn't notice it until now

Posted by: bbbb | Jul 14 2016 5:25 utc | 103

@92 & 104 - it's OT but better than the US elections.

This looks like a non-story whipped into froth for propaganda. I couldn't find it anywhere and finally had to search Google. The first results page shows the top Atlantic media carrying the identical meme, namely that Putin fired all the commanders of the Baltic fleet because they refused to confront and provoke western ships. It was a "Stalin-style" purge.

The truth is actually found in this story at Russia Beyond the Headlines, dated June 30 - 2 weeks ago:

Commanders of Russia's Baltic Fleet fired
-- Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has dismissed Baltic Fleet Commander Viktor Kravchuk and other high-ranking officials following inspections in the region.

This is all part of the snap inspections and massive drills at zero notice that Russia has conducted lately. The leadership of Russia is determined that its military will be actively ready for war at any time. The Baltic fleet was sloppy, and had falsified reports. Part of the neglect concerned improving the lot of the service personnel, which had been ordered and not carried out.

It didn't take Putin to order this - Shoigu alone is all it takes to be outraged by a lazy military command in a time of war preparedness.

The true story is thus one of noble aspiration rather than one of egoistic "purges". But leave to the UK and US media to drag it down to their level.

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 14 2016 5:44 utc | 104

Bluemot5@20 If we're speaking Latin, the plural of referendum is referenda though the OED frowns on that construction, preferring referendums in English usage. Since few speak English any more, preferring to speak trash talk, double talk, obscenities, gibberish and other forms of political newspeak, it hardly matters what you call a referendum or referendums. They seem to mean nothing whatsoever any more so why not call them unimportant opinion surveys.

Want my opinion on all this? Nah! I didn't think so. Sorry to have asked.

Posted by: Macon Richardson | Jul 14 2016 8:19 utc | 105

virgile @ 36 You say, "In fact Sanders has more in common with Trump that he has with Hillary." Au contraire! Sanders has everything in common with Hillary. That's why he's backing her. All the Sanders "socialist" shite over the years, all his lefty, lefty politics is just bling to throw to the yokels. "Oh, I got this gold coin at Mardi Gras! Lucky me!" Right! All Sanders has ever thrown out is cheap bling.

Oh, don't get me started on Elizabeth Warren, the pit bull against Wall Street! Better bling, better presentation. Pocahontas threw wampum to the yokels and we know how much Mad Dog 20/20 a piece of wampum buys in the trading post these days. (MD20/20! Look it up.)

The Democratic Party is a big tent. Sure enough! And the carnies in it will roll you up every time. Of course, the Republicans are just a pack of street thugs. They don't even give you cotton candy (spun sugar) before they mug you.

Posted by: Macon Richardson | Jul 14 2016 8:43 utc | 106

Macon Richardson | Jul 14, 2016 4:43:59 AM | 107

Ah, such a refreshingly real view of the U.S. body politic in the guise of democrats.
It's obvious USians just don't get "it". Never will IMO...

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 14 2016 11:53 utc | 107

Thomas Frank: What Ever Happened to the Party of the People?

Posted by: okie farmer | Jul 14 2016 12:06 utc | 108

I meant this link:
Thomas Frank: Listen! Liberal!

Posted by: okie farmer | Jul 14 2016 12:19 utc | 109

Here's an indicator of what sort of transparency in government one might expect from the Trump "Administration."

Trump Sues Ex-Staffer For $10 Million For Breaking Nondisclosure Agreement.

Not only are staffers subjected to this, volunteers are as well. "The tight control of volunteers stands in stark contrast to not only American political-campaign norms but also Trump's reputation for speaking his mind."

Combine that with his statement that he'd like to change libel laws to make it easier for himself to sue news organizations that down fawn all over him. Does he seem like the sort to encourage whistle-blowers like Manning or Snowden? Will he be logging all his email traffic for future FOIA requests? Or maybe he'll kill that off, too.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 14 2016 12:21 utc | 110

$6;Far right small govt?How the f*ck would they repress their people,wo big government?Jesus.
They both suck,command and control scum with plans for other people,just like the scumbag zionists.
Trump has absolutely no MSM in his corner,it is a complete Zionist held apparatus,and any polls from them are as suspect as OJ Simpson.
Nobody is polling US,the hoi polloi,and all opinions are of the zionist variety.
I live on LI and I have yet to see one HRC bumper sticker or lawn sign.
Her support,like Israeli in America,might be a mile wide but an inch deep.
And Wapo says he is tied with her,btw,but that is more poppycock,cause he is winning.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 14 2016 12:59 utc | 111

94;Stop Chip stop;My daughter is married to a chosen and it hasn't affected me in the slightest as I hate Israel with a passion,same as their f*cking whore ,the hillaryous one.
I didn't get 20 pieces of silver I guess.
And my son in law,by marrying a shiksa,illuminates the melting pot of America,of which we are all members.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 14 2016 13:34 utc | 112

38;I guarantee you the republican turnout for Trump will be immense,and it will be independents and life long democrats(me)in proud support.
The only nationalism permitted by zion is their own,but the British,and US in the fall will say otherwise.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 14 2016 13:37 utc | 113

108;The naked ambition of pocahontas was startling to say the least.
Two bubbleheads for the price of one.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 14 2016 13:52 utc | 114

Early reports of strong movement toward Greens (from rich at nakedcapitalism):

There’s been an explosion of Berners coming in through every portal of the campaign, and it’s really exciting:
Donations to Jill Stein Explode Nearly 1000% Since Sanders’ Endorsement of Clinton
Tom Cahill | July 13, 2016

Jill Stein, the presumptive Green Party presidential nominee, is seeing an unprecedented surge of energy for her campaign in the wake of Bernie Sanders’ endorsement of Hillary Clinton.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 14 2016 13:54 utc | 115

Most awesome? story of the day;Hollande pays 11,000 a month for a hair stylist,at the French peoples expense.
Man,how did they stuck with that clown?Where's Chirac,they need him.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 14 2016 13:55 utc | 116

Hollande's hair stylist: it would be worth every penny to hire him to take charge of Boris Johnson whose mane resists all types of hair spray that are available without a professional incense.

Boris promises to be the best Foreign Minister ever. The Independent selected 10 quotes of varying quality, but number one is priceless:
In November 2007, Mr Johnson said of Hillary Clinton: “She’s got dyed blonde hair and pouty lips, and a steely blue stare, like a sadistic nurse in a mental hospital."

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 14 2016 14:54 utc | 117

Piotr at 79. Interesting, I didn’t know that these kinds of provisions existed. (Also I thought around 25% would be effectively excluded from Labour membership and thus voting rights, the article says the 25 pounds is an obstacle for only 20% - still quite a lot.)

I don’t approve of the essentialist or ‘social belongings’ inherent classifications though - joining a Union - ethnic/religious minority - LGTB, sexual ‘minority’ - or an ‘upper’ group, Scientists. This kind of pigeon-holing does nobody any good, it is part of the divide-to-rule strategy, it instills in ppl the idea that some groups are truly (and perhaps even legitimately according to some!) discriminated against, and therefore they are encouraged play the victim card, band together, to obtain special conditions, considerations. In French it is called communautarisme and is viewed by many with great suspicion, as the Law of the Land (or…) should apply equally to all citizens.

A huge fail for GB Labour as far as I am concerned. Not that it is surprising.

P.S. Sanders always said he would line up with support for the Dem. candidate, whomever. Never deviated from that afaik (?) Where is the surprise?

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 14 2016 14:54 utc | 118

@119 Don't get distracted by Boris' hair. He's a nationalist, similar in some ways to Trump, which is why the MSM don't like him.

Posted by: dh | Jul 14 2016 15:04 utc | 119

News Flash: Israel wins U.S. election; Iran to be nuked during inauguration

Trump just picked Mike Pence as running mate. And from (((Forward))):

"...Pence has said his support of Israel is deeply rooted in his Christian faith, as well as in his strong relationship with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. Pence was introduced to AIPAC members in 2009 by then-board member Marshall Cooper at an AIPAC policy conference.

“Let me say emphatically, like the overwhelming majority of my constituents, my Christian faith compels me to cherish the state of Israel,” then-Rep. Pence said.

Cooper described Pence to the audience as “Israel’s good friend.”..."

So whether Hillary or Trump gets the job (or Obama declares a national emergency an remains) Israel will be the de-facto new commander-in-chief of the U.S., henceforth to be know as Palestine West.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 14 2016 18:57 utc | 120

@107 macon. lol.. thanks for that.

@ 121 dh... nice to see you back!

@122 paveway - the usa is zionist property politically.. nothing changes here..

Posted by: james | Jul 14 2016 19:23 utc | 121

Noirette: today I have read in The Guardian that the affiliate union members will be subjected to the same six month limit. Apparently, even political correspondents of The Independent and The Guardian have trouble figuring what the rules are, and one phrase suggested that they will be discussed further.

In the meantime, a "Labour donor" vowed to sue to have the ruling on Corbyn (entitled to defend his post) reversed. "Michael Foster, a former parliamentary candidate, will lodge the application at the high court on Thursday afternoon." The Guardian ended the news piece with those two paragraphs:

"Foster, a former showbiz agent who has given more than £400,000 to the party since 2010, came to prominence during the last Labour party conference, after he confronted Corbyn at a Labour Friends of Israel reception, angered the Labour leader had not mentioned the word “Israel” in his address to the meeting.

“Say the word ‘Israel’,” he shouted at Corbyn, who is a longstanding pro-Palestinian campaigner."

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 14 2016 19:37 utc | 122

Piotr @ 124, All this (thx for the news) is similar to the mind-boggling rules / moves / etc of the Dems in the US, nobody is sure of anything, everything is manipulated, nothing can be checked, challenged, chaos is good, court cases take 20 years (and only serve lawyer fees, all is always too late.) Sham, erstaz democracy. With Israel always looming large…

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 14 2016 19:58 utc | 123

Israeli Mass Surveillance System Launched in UAE

The new Falcon Eye surveillance system—sold to the UAE by an Israeli defense contractor—“links thousands of cameras spread across the city, as well as thousands of other cameras installed at facilities and buildings in the emirate,” the Abu Dhabi Monitoring and Control Center said in an official statement. The Falcon Eye will “help control roads by monitoring traffic violations while also monitoring significant behaviors in (Abu Dhabi) such as public hygiene and human assemblies in non-dedicated areas.”

Strange bedfellows? Not at all. The Israelis and the GCC countries, the USG and EU, are all soul brothers : tiny 'elite' minorities attempting to rule their respective roosts by technological means encompassing everything from drones to the media to their ubiquitous taps.

Totalitarianism is alive and well in the Middle East ... and in North America, the UK, Europe ... the last thing to be tolerated, the first things to be crushed, are 'human assemblies in non-dedicated areas' over which their corporate selves would rule.

The Powers That Are are thicker than thieves. Among mere thieves competition remains. The PTA are acting in loco parentis ... taking 'care' of us all for their own good.

Mike Gravel used to describe our present political situation as 'adolescent': mature enough to understand the fix we're in, too immature to do anything but complain to 'those in charge'.

We're in charge. We've just been asleep at the wheel. Time to wake up, finally? Before our whole world become Nice?

Posted by: jfl | Jul 14 2016 23:28 utc | 124

I agree that if Sanders had gone on to the Green Party he could have gotten significant support, enough to guarantee Clinton's loss. But that's not what he wanted to do, whatever his reasons for running. Folks overseas who think that Trump is anything more than a loudmouth, racist who would be controlled by the same forces as Clinton is controlled by are fooling themselves. If Sanders ran as a "pied piper" it wasn't successful. If anything, he presented a contrast to what the Democratic Party has become.

In 1963 there was a coup in America. Since then the military-industrial complex has run the country. It has been most apparent in its foreign policy, which has been the conquest of natural resources (especially oil and gas) worldwide. America's resentment with the USSR/Russia has to do with their living on top of resources.

But in order to continue the illusion of democracy in the US, it was necessary to maintain some differences between the two parties so that Americans would think that they have a choice. Meanwhile, the party that is supposed to represent the working class has been sliding into the arms of the corporatists. Essentially, in order to give Americans a "choice" Trump has been pushed as the demonic clown versus H. Clinton. Unfortunately, for good reasons as well as because of endless propaganda from the right, most Americans distrust Clinton, as well they should. Her casual announcement about enforcing a "no-fly zone" over Syria is essentially a declaration of war against Russia.

Going back to the coup in 1963, in order to maintain control of the population it was necessary for the ruling class to continue to generate candidates each election cycle to pretend to care about the working class. I have long suspected that early on in their careers both Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton were recruited by US intelligence. During his time in Britain Bill's classmates assumed that he was CIA. At about this time Hillary, who'd been raised a rabid Republican, went to both the Republican and Democratic national conventions in 1968. Not only was it a rather expensive thing to do for a college student, but most people who are interested in one party aren't interested in the other. I suspect it was the beginning of her career in US power politics. Shortly after she wrote a pro-Vietnam speech for Melvin Laird in 1968, she was involved with the various Black Panther trials around the US. It's hard to believe that the Hillary who stands before us now was ever a political ally of the Panthers. Rather, I suspect she was observing for an intelligence agency, the FBI or CIA. She sat through a Panther trial in New Haven, Connecticut, and then spent a summer in Oakland working for the law firm that was representing the Panthers in the Bay Area. Essentially, she was in the right place at the right time to glean information for COINTELPRO, the massive spying program directed against anti-war and black movements. A few years later she worked on the Democrats' legal team for Watergate, another good place for a government informant to be. Bill, during his time at Oxford, would have functioned like the thousands of informants who sat in on peace group meetings across American campuses.

Later, when the CIA was dumping cocaine at Mena, Arkansas, Bill Clinton was in position to make sure state police left the operation alone. It's not surprising that George W. Bush's first head of the DEA was Asa Hutchinson, who'd been the incurious federal prosecutor over that part of Arkansas when the drugs came in.

The Clintons were prominent in the Democratic Leadership Council, which was an organization within the Democratic Party pushing it to the right. In 1992 Bill pushed trade agreements that would destroy the American middle class. Since then the party has been hopelessly corrupted by Wall Street money.

It's now Hillary's turn. If you've always wanted to take a vacation somewhere or wanted to do something before you die, I suggest you make time for it this year. I cannot think of another president in memory who is more wed to military adventurism than Hillary.

Posted by: Bob In Portland | Jul 15 2016 0:02 utc | 125

in re 103 --

Here's the issue -- the Greens stink. More evidence follows later.

But let's talk now about you're gold old fashioned anti-communism. It's the main thing that unites the bourgeois parties, like the Greens and the Republicans.

You know next to nothing about socialism or politics, so your nervous laughter neither surprises nor impresses me.

Telling that you would resort to a business metaphor, but you are in finance and new media, no? That is to say, in an industry that openly produces shite as click-bait. Who cares if it's bogus, we got hits!

I stand by my point. We socialists took a hard hit with the "collapse of communism." And yet a democratic socialist nearly beat the Clinton machine for the nomination, in large part because the youth view the doctrine favorably.

And why is that? Do you think it could have something to do with the tendency to monopoly and the impoverishment of labor inherent in the bourgeois mode of production that Marx described? Or maybe Vladimer Ilich's dissection of finance capital? Gee, why would that resonate in the here-and-now?

Underlying social forces still favor economic democracy. Rather like the underlying force of capitalism and liberal democracy could not be stopped, perhaps not even slowed, by the defeat of the English and French Revolution, it's still either -- "socialism or barbarism."

Trump's election might perhaps clarify that choice, but the correlation of class forces does not favor the proletariat, and will far more likely lead to the latter than the former. Hence, the long game.

And so my constant advice -- do not blow shit up, if you do not know where the big pieces will fall and how they are to be reassembled.

Oh, and, "America must have proportional representation!"

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 15 2016 0:04 utc | 126

Proportional representation etc. is not a panaceum. I think that party solidarity, even if the party is only partially satisfactory is a good tool. What is happening is that Sanders who represents "turn left" for Democrats is now more electable than Clinton. This has a potential for a big change, much bigger than ephemeral "relative success" of the Greens, who are fated to collect less votes than Libertarians (they may have their best year in a long, long time).

Of course, the "right wing of the left" discards party solidarity with ease. They more or less rejected McGovern and Carter. Hillary's health care reform had the same fate. But they have very hard time copying with change. Hillary basically promised good old times, and this is not good enough. I suspect that her game plan is to unload full blast of "Trump's corruption" ads closer to elections and keep the "positive tone" for now, and that may even work. But if she polls badly enough, Democratic establishment may see the light and go for Sanders.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 15 2016 1:19 utc | 127

The Guardian

Ewen MacAskill
Thursday 14 July 2016 17.00 EDT Last modified on Thursday 14 July 2016 19.35 EDT

Labour grassroots members are in open revolt over a series of restrictions imposed by the party’s ruling national executive over the leadership contest – with some branches holding unofficial meetings in defiance of a ban imposed nationally earlier this week.

Labour branches in London, the Midlands, Liverpool and elsewhere all defied the order and organised impromptu events, reflecting unhappiness in some parts of the party’s membership at the decision taken at the same meeting that confirmed that Jeremy Corbyn would be on the leadership ballot.

New union members barred from voting in Labour leader election
Read more
After Corbyn’s candidacy was validated, the NEC ruled that only those who had been members for more than six months would be allowed to vote, while new supporters wishing to cast their vote would be given two days to sign up as registered supporters. They will have to pay £25, far more than the £3 many Corbyn-backers paid in the contest last year.

Pro-Corbyn members are also protesting over the suspension of all constituency party meetings until the election for leader is over at the end of September.
Almost strangely, the coverage in The Guardian is increasingly sympathetic to the opposition to PLC/NEC.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 15 2016 5:27 utc | 128

@130, pb 'Almost strangely, the coverage in The Guardian is increasingly sympathetic to the opposition to PLC/NEC.'

They just wanna be on the side that's winnin'.

That's if I've read your usual, pellucid 'sympathetic to the opposition to the PLC/NEC' ... you're sayin' Guardian's got a lotta nerve sayin' they're Corbyn's friend, right?

Posted by: jfl | Jul 15 2016 9:39 utc | 129

Late to the party as per usual. Chiefly because I've been devoting most spare time and energy to the Corbyn push for resistance to neoliberalism in the UK.
As far as Sanders goes, that was pretty much how we all predicted it would go when he first kicked off.

Yes it is a piss off that another generation has been permanently turned off political activism by Sanders' selfish careerism, but millennials probably wouldn't have turned up anyway. This isn't a criticism - I completely understand why young people have decided voting is toxic, but it can be frustrating as fuck. For example the pix of millennials protesting brexit belies the reality that voter turn out in the referendum was low for 18 to 25's.
Huch lower than say the boomer turn out where millions of people unaffected by the long term outcome of england outside the EU, turned up and said their two bobs worth -OUT. (yeah the EU has morphed into a neolib horrorshow but that need not be permanent. Sorting the EU into a viable humanist structure for a united europe would be a doddle compared with trying to achieve the same thing within the english reactionary system - england still wants to be part of the single market, all they've done with brexit is remove themselves from the decision making body while still having to follow EU decisions. The French have a better approach - just ignore the rules the EU pushes out that are disagreeable - no one ever seems to pull France up for that.

Anyway the Corbyn thing. I dunno how many are aware exactly how scared the parliamentary labour party chicken coup organisers are.
In addition to stopping new members from voting they have also passed a meeting at the NEC barring branches from having any official meetings (including the Annual General Meetings they are required to have by law) until after the leadership campaign has finished. They are obviously worried that branches up and down the country will deselect the chicken coup plotters before Corbyn is replaced.
The hope is that Corbyn will be defeated and his supporters won't be able to vote for sympathetic NEC. Then a motion will be passed making all preselection for constituency seats the role of the National body rather than the constituency branch.
See as well as parachuting like minded neolibs who they knew up at Offord or Cambridge while they were being indoctrinated, the corrupt blairites have also been selling seats to rich fuckers who want to become 'leaders' e.g. This Michael Foster asshole whose family donated just under half a million pounds to Labour and was rewarded with a promise of a seat. Now that the party doesn't appear to be a plaything of the rich with Corbyn at the helm Foster is suing in an effort to have Corbyn chucked off the ballot.

This is what it is all about. For years now local electorates have had people parachuted in and been told to support their candidature. It is a scam because many many Britons vote Labour no matter who is running because the level of trust for the party was that high. No longer hundreds of Labour MPs abstaining on welfare cuts was the straw that broke the camels back for millions of Labour voters who live in regions that have been derelict since Thatcherism destroyed all employment in the area. For too many citizens the only easily attainable work that pays sufficient to keep the family fed is selling smack and/or whiz to the other unfortunates in the area.
These globalist assholes thought that being seen to support welfare recipients would be a turn off for the bourgois London citizens they have been trying to woo from Toryland.
They just took the poor fuckers in the rustbelt for granted, thinking "well who else can they vote for?" in that time honoured rip of an ersatz left political movement burning the impoverished who have no one to turn to other than those who are screwing them.

This leadership election could be closer than the last because there is no doubt some will give way under the deluge of propaganda the media are pumping out.
Certainly the chicken coup plotters' polling is telling them it is a big ask which is why they are pulling all these scaredy cat stunts.
Despite the talk about forming another party, they know that without the Labour 'brand' they are just another mob of chancers trying to compete with the centuries old chancers tradition of the conservative party in other words they are fucked if they can't win this.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Jul 15 2016 9:51 utc | 130

I’m late arriving at this party (limited net access due to austerity) but I still want to put in my three ha’porth. In a nutshell, the reason that the PLP (Parliamentary Labour Party) are seeking to unseat Jezza right now is because it’s their last chance before the LP Conference. When Conference is held, the JezAgenda will become Party policy and neoliberalism in the Labour Party will over.

A year ago, when JC got elected to the leadership, much of the PLP were aghast. Not only did he have a comprehensive set of new policies but half of the established Labour Party membership voted for him. He would’ve won without the 3 quidders (the Jezralites).
So detached were the representatives from their members.

Since then, they’ve done everything to undermine him. Votes in Parliament, maintaining a hostile media etc. His presence as leader has caused a loss of old party members and a massive recruitment of new members. New members, wherever, are usually enthused and the new LP membership is massively enthusiastic and is being v.well organised.
Party Conference nears.

It’s crunch time. They’ve tried through undermining him and failed, they’ve tried through bullying him out and failed, a desperate plan C to stop him being on the ballot when challenged has failed.

Behind all of this I see the malign hand of Mandy (Peter Mandelson), part of the Blair inner circle since before ’97 and now a Party “grandee”. He once infamously remarked about being “relaxed about the filthy rich”. He’s more conspiratorial than any internet site.
(He’s also one of the initiators of Progress, a neoliberal think-tank / pressure group. Many of the recalcitrant PLP are members of Progress.)

I’d guess that the NEC came to the decision they did because they couldn’t stomach / face the consequences of keeping Jezza off the ballot.
The membership, who are now more l.wing than they were a year ago, are mad as hell about the absence of support for Corbyn.

Whatever, the “rebels” have suicided the Labout Party.

Recommended vid abt the state of the nation: John Harris

Posted by: Stubbs | Jul 15 2016 10:45 utc | 131

How bad are the Greens at politics then?

Let’s look at the actual data they report, shall we? Here’s the underlying source.

I note the snark in Stein’s statement. “There is so much courage out there to stand up to the marching orders handed down by the usual suspects.”

Of course, if Sanders marching orders had been to go with the Greens, as Stein kept pleading as late as five days ago, then of course he’d be an “elder statesman” and not one of “the usual suspects.”

Since Tuesday morning, the Green Party has received over $80,000 in contributions, over half of which comes from first-time donors, and half of which comes in the form of contributions under $50. Tellingly, about 615 of those contributions totalled $27, the exact number commonly trumpeted and solicited by the Sanders campaign during his revolutionary grassroots funding movement.

So let’s see – assume that only the first time donors are disillusioned Sanders supporters. So that is about USD40K. Some USD20K is collected in the form of donations under USD50. USD16,605 would be the total of USD27 contribs.

So that would be under 1/4th. of the total haul since Tues. can be ID’d as likely Sanders voters.

Since this is said to represent a ten-fold increase in their pace, I think the real take-home message is how poorly they were doing before. We'll see if it is sustained.

And actually, I would hope and expect that they gamed it. That Sanders would endorse the nominee was a given, so they knew this day would arrive. And some amount of money was likely to flow. So they had some reliable givers lined up, they ponied up their USD40K of donations over USD50, inflating the total.

If not, they're worse aktiv than I thought.

The dating of the love note on USUNCUT (sometime Wedsneday) suggests that the campaing is raising about USD80K per day, at best. With just over 2,775 days at that clip, they will have collected the USD222.6 mil. that Sanders raised.

Yeah, quite the little prairie fire there. Not.

Maybe her polling numbers will rise in a few days. Or maybe not.

Sanders supporters had begun consolidating around Clinton’s candidacy after she all but secured the nomination in May, according to Washington Post-ABC News polling.

Before then, 71 percent of Democratic-leaning Sanders voters supported Clinton against Trump in a two-way matchup. The number rose to 81 percent in June — larger than the share of 2008 Clinton backers who supported Barack Obama at a similar point that year.

Although only 8 percent of Sanders voters said they support Trump, the latest poll found that third-party candidates pose a risk to Clinton. In a four-way matchup, 11 percent of Sanders Democrats said they would back Green Party candidate Jill Stein and 8 percent would back Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party, dragging Clinton’s support down to 65 percent.

And actually, they might only be gaining back folks for who earlier had defected Green ranks for Sanders' fresh, young face.

"The Sanders Campaign Is Absolutely Destroying Us!" California Greens told Mother Jones.

The party's steep decline in registration — from nearly 110,000 voters in early 2015 to 78,000 now — represents a tiny fraction of California's 18 million registered voters. Yet it underscores how the Sanders campaign has made deep inroads into California's liberal electorate, tapping voters who may have never before considered voting for a Democrat.

Sanders going Green was always a fantasy. They've been after him since 2011, and he has yet to return their calls.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 15 2016 11:46 utc | 132

PB at 129 --

I lived for many years in Cambridge, Mass., proportional representation produced a fairly representative, progressive government. With multi-member districts, it ends winner-take-all and more accurately reflects the nuances of public opinion.

I would say it is a necessary but not sufficient step.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 15 2016 11:49 utc | 133

"Abstaining from any endorsement or running as independent or Green party candidate would have been more honorable ways for Sanders to admit defeat."

This apparent failure makes much more sense if you understand that Bernie is at heart a deeply committed patriot and is only doing what is best for his nation, the Jewish nation.

Posted by: Ezra Pound | Jul 15 2016 12:13 utc | 134

@132 DiD, @133 Stubbs

Thanks for the news. It sounds as though the people are coming to life in Britain.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 15 2016 12:21 utc | 135

rufus magister @ 129

Cambridge has a progressive/liberal majority that would be in city government under any fair scheme. I am not sure if "reflecting nuances of public opinion" is important, but surely, it is important to have a flow of ideas represented in the "elected mainstream", and a more efficient way of eliminating those who became worse during years in office.

However, in any system, "mini-parties" do not have a critical mass to sway the political outcomes, and if they have a role in deciding the majority of representatives, all too often they are basically bought.

In any case, Sanders has to thing how his program can advance best in the current system, and "playing nice" with the party system will help more than hurt. Moreover, one has to get majority under the current system first to change it. Armed revolution is clearly not an alternative.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 15 2016 13:03 utc | 136

86;My idiot brother left a voicemail on my wifes phone;Bill Clinton is stocking viagra for erection day.
At first I didn't laugh.Then I did,heartily.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 15 2016 13:24 utc | 137

135;Oh,a poison ivy league commie zionist.A perfect hell bitch voter.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 15 2016 13:32 utc | 138

b;The white vote will be massive this year.Bet on it,and it will mostly be for Trump.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 15 2016 13:35 utc | 139

rufus pissing in the wind (of change). LOL!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 15 2016 13:58 utc | 140

In addition to stopping new members from voting they have also passed a meeting at the NEC barring branches from having any official meetings .. Debs at 132.

here an example to illustrate:

The Blairite type ‘coupists’ really have their heads in the sand. How could they have imagined something like that would work? A stunning example of short-sighted elite closed off group-think, totally out of touch.

Anyway it looks like there will be ginormous fight to keep the assets of Labour as a major party (what they are exactly is hard to define…and probably they have dire debts?…) and that Labour might split. Alternatively the Corbynistas win and take over the Party, with the rest left out in the cold or scattering…in other words they are fucked if they can't win this as Debs wrote. (see also Stubbs at 133 for commentary.)

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 15 2016 14:11 utc | 141

Cornel West endorses Jill Stein

... I am supporting Jill Stein. I am with her – the only progressive woman in the race ... I have a deep love for my brother Bernie Sanders, but I disagree with him on Hillary Clinton. I don’t think she would be an “outstanding president”. Her militarism makes the world a less safe place.

Clinton policies of the 1990s generated inequality, mass incarceration, privatization of schools and Wall Street domination. There is also a sense that the Clinton policies helped produce the right-wing populism that we’re seeing now in the country. And we think she’s going to come to the rescue? That’s not going to happen.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 15 2016 14:14 utc | 142

Jill Stein Pledges to Grant Edward Snowden a Full Pardon and Appoint Him to Her Cabinet (ht ZeroHedge)

How can anyone not admired such a courageous and principled stand?

Throw the bums out. Vote Green.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 15 2016 15:16 utc | 143

@2 bill..bernie spporters better not show how stupid they are by also voting for hillary..

Posted by: james | Jul 13, 2016 1:27:48 AM | 3

Sanders supporters are by definition stupid and/or dishonest

For example: the one commenting at #14 and #101 in this thread is a prime example of a Sanders supporter that is both stupid AND Dishonest

Posted by: DownWithThat | Jul 15 2016 16:08 utc | 144

It ain't piss you silly rabbit, it's Dust in the Wind. We all are just Ashes to Ashes after all, Runnin' Against the Wind.

I trust you have all found Lovers in a Dangerous Time.

Don't the hours grow shorter as the days go by/You never get to stop and open your eyes
One day you're waiting for the sky to fall/The next you're dazzled by the beauty of it all

'Cuz Love is the Drug.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 16 2016 1:59 utc | 145

I’m not an Ivy Leaguer. I went to high school with no AP courses in rural Delmarva. My undergrad ed was at Northeastern and UMass/Boston, I took my MA from Boston College and was a doctoral student at Pitt.

The drearily glibly, moralistic Preacher West, however, is an Ivy League theologian. And a prominent figure in identity politics.

The Greens don’t offer real change; they represent a different, more piously moralistic wing of the bourgeoisie. They do not challenge capitalism, they simply want a more green and sustainable version. We’ll go from Big Oil influence peddling to Big Herbal All-Organic Supplements influence peddling. You would still slide envelopes of cash across the table, but the envelope is unbleached, 100% post-consumer recycled paper, and the table artisanally fashioned from sustainably grown hardwoods. But no leather cushions on the seats, and no dairy for the organic Fair Trade coffee.

I can’t see how pardoning or even appointing Snowden to the Cabinet is especially principled or courageous. He's popular with progressive voters, no risk there. I rather doubt if the Greens were the first to think of the pardon. With absolutely no chance of winning the Presidency, it’s showboating. Which is what candidates do.

It is a clever little stunt. Except for the fact that even if Stein won, with no Green Tea Senators, Snowden would never be confirmed. I don't think he's Cabinet material myself, at this time, though he looks good for a responsible post among the siloviki.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 16 2016 2:28 utc | 146

Whatever my unproven failings I’m definitely way smarter and more honest than one styling themselves “DownWithThatSortOfThing”. Has the air of the patronizing, small town, old-money matron about it, no? Reflects good breeding.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 16 2016 2:30 utc | 147

@149 rufus,

these tit for tat responses get boring, lol.. i thought you were british? do you get to vote in the usa election? seems to me (and as b points out), the idea of sanders throwing his support for hillary is disingenuous.. the reason so many people believed in him is he was presenting himself as a viable alternative.. now that he has bowed out, there is no viable alternative... those folks who wanted to vote for sanders are essentially screwed... well, if you believe you have to vote based along party lines, i believe many people are going to be rudely awakened in this election, just like some folks were with brexit..

Posted by: james | Jul 16 2016 3:17 utc | 148

jas, 150

I don't find them boring. At least, in moderation. And typically, I usually add a little info to the mix, even if it is ignored.

I fail to understand the widespread, affected amour propre. Rightly or wrongly, Sanders felt he could change the Democratic Party, and clearly stated this as his goal. Past mass movements have forced changes, most dramatically in the 1930's, and perhaps the Sandersistas will do do now.

Sanders made it crystal clear that he would support the eventual nominee, so the posture of Affection Rejected seems misplaced. And So it Goes. "The way it's goin' no one knows... And in the air there's aftershave lotion...." Fifty thousand watts, and a big acoustic tower!

No alternative? Keep on keepin' on. The genie is out of the bottle. Even if "pwogwessive" Democrats do capitalize, other movements will benefit as well. The aftermath is likely to aid the socialist left. It's a long march, stay alert and keep your powder dry.

I have no problem with people voting their conscience on party lines; its what one should do. I have consistently said so. Socialist, Green, Libertarian, Peace and Freedom, even Democrat or Republican. I'm voting red, like I have for thirty-odd years.

This does not contradict the (obvious) notion that we might all be better off should The D**khead Donald lose. Nor does it preclude arguing that some parties have more suitable programs than others.

I'm a native of Delmarva. I acquired a number of anglicisms over the years, under the influence Monty Python and an English girlfriend. I'm of largely English descent (paternal side has been here since the 1640's it seems), so wry understatement comes naturally. And what's not to like about British punk power pop?

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 16 2016 12:53 utc | 149


I don't trust anything you say about yourself.

I'll take Greens today over the false promise of your bullsh!t 'long game'.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2016 17:37 utc | 150

rufus magister says:

...I'm voting red, like I have for thirty-odd years

the Communist Party hasn't run a presidential candidate since 1984, over 30 years ago, when they ran Gus Hall and Angela Davis, and accrued 36,386 votes, 0.04%. i guess after that inglorious result they decided that in order to maintain any relevancy at all they'd just curl up under the wing of the Democratic Party and endorse EVERY candidate it ran, including Hillary Clinton.

so, is that red, as in Democrat?

Posted by: john | Jul 16 2016 17:55 utc | 151

There are other socialist parties than CPUSA. SWP for many years, but they've faded. Socialist Party of late.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 16 2016 18:01 utc | 152

Of course, someone active on the left, or even in politics generally, would have know that. Unless they were a troll, that is.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 16 2016 18:02 utc | 153

in re Jack Rabid

"You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free." Is any of this inconsistent with my background, as previously outlined?

I have no doubt that you are who you say you are. Sanctimonious, inclined to impute bad faith to others while insisting upon your own superior rectitude. Incapable of acknowledgeing the experiences or viewpoints of those who differ from you, you filter out anything that fails to confirm your narrow views.

In short, you are financier and a new media click-baiter, ignorant of most things you profess to pontificate upon.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 16 2016 18:06 utc | 154

@151 rufus, i agree with your last line, lol...

personally i would dump the idea of voting along party lines as it has gotten folks nowhere, especially in a country that has only 2 parties.. the best event in recent years i recall is ross perot running.. it sort of shook up the static environment that many voters continue to see themselves in, and of course young people can't even bother voting as it seems a complete waste of time... i am for upending the party system and i think donald trump has done a lot of good in this regard.. i hope it continues.. screw the party system.. it is great for corps, but shitty for people.. if i was in the states, i would be voting for trump.. trump is like a brexit vote in the usa and i bet many are going to take it..

Posted by: james | Jul 16 2016 18:46 utc | 155

james --

Glad to see we agree on the important stuff. I saw Rokcpile's "Seconds of Pleasure" Tour, best concert ever.

Trump is not Brexit. Established figures in the Conservative Party are now at the helm, most of the new Cabinet is apparently committed to leaving the EU, which itself is encouraging it.

One's protest vote in America will get to appoint Supreme Court Justices and will serve as Commander-in-Chief. And other fun stuff like that there. He has no organization and has trouble attracting money and endorsements.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jul 16 2016 21:01 utc | 156

rufus magister

so, you'll be voting Emidio "Mimi" Soltysik/Angela Nicole Walker in the presidential election?

Posted by: john | Jul 17 2016 12:24 utc | 157

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