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Feeling the Bern

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on March 28, 2016

Bernie Sanders at the Seattle Rally (photo credit off the Smart Phone of Son of K-Dog)

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I leave work, it is Friday night and Bernie is having his biggest rally ever about a mile away.   Normally I'd pass the stadium and hop on a cantilever called Edgar Martinez Way, getting on the western end of I-90 heading east over long Lake Washington then south on I-405 to home.  Generally it is twelve miles or forty five minutes, whichever comes first. 

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/e/ea/Downtown_Seattle_from_Kerry_Park.jpg/360px-Downtown_Seattle_from_Kerry_Park.jpg The trip around the south end of the lake, perhaps from twenty one to twenty five miles depending on how I decide to drive through the city takes closer to the forty five minutes traffic might mean the way north and across the floating bridge over the lake but always less than the stop and go traffic times that way can bring and a more consistent trip.  There are places to stop at for doggie treats.

Generally starting north to the stadium is the way to go but I've noticed the area in the last two days (SODO) has been crawling with law enforcement of every conceivable kind and some kinds of which you can't even conceive of.  A baseball game at the stadium can severely inter-fear with the commute as it is and I guessed with Bernie Sanders in town the northern route might be a bit dicey.  It was also Friday and stopping for doggie treats on the way home and avoiding stop and go traffic altogether is what I generally like to do on Fridays.

I headed south.  I knew Bernie would be arriving soon but I had no desire to rally and there is nothing Bernie could possibly say to make me a supporter because I already am.  I was not in the mood for circus.

One donut and coffee later get home and no Mrs. Dog.  Turns out she is with our son at the Sanders rally and they lucked out and got seating four rows back from the home plate stage about a hundred feet from Bernie.  A top seat and they get this in spite of deciding to go to the rally at the last minute.  Other people not so lucky had been lined up to get into the stadium since noon.  Fair Fortuna had been with my family.  The people outside had a festive time waiting for the doors to open and the weather was good.

After I spend a lonesome evening alone by myself I ventured out for a late night snack and when I returned Mrs. Dog and son had come home.  They were both animated and inspired muttering things like 'political revolution' and 'get out the vote'. 

With wry pleasure; knowing that neither one of them are morning people, I looked at their wide eyes and said to them.  'Since you are both so inspired you have to get up in the morning and get to the Democratic Party Caucus at Newcastle Elementary to see Bernie is chosen as the Democratic party candidate choice from our district then.'  I knew about the district democratic caucus in the morning only because a Sanders volunteer had called the house earlier in the evening urging me to be there for Bernie.  To be nice to him, I had said I'd think about it not telling him how protective I am about my Saturday mornings which usually involves at least a couple of hours laying about in a Hugh Hefner bathrobe being contemplative sipping coffee and that is all.  As I was talking to the Sanders volunteer the future with coffee was the future I was anticipating.  With my utterance about attending the caucus all that had changed.

That is the story of how I wound up at our local Democratic Caucus Saturday morning with Mrs. Dog.  Our son who had left later in the night to hook up with his girl friend must have gone to her Democratic Caucus because he wasn't at the Democratic caucus where he is registered to vote. 

It was an interesting experience.  Audience participation of a well thought out ceremony.  A retired but still well known Seattle sports announcer, Tony Ventrella now Digital Media Host for the Seattle Seahawks and a well know former sports announcer for Seattle television manned a microphone upon the convening of the caucus and read a letter about why we were there.  Tony lives in the area and was caucusing like everyone else who was there.  I have seen him at the local grocery store.

After a preliminary vote which would have given Bernie three of five delegates from our local precinct at a county wide caucus, the next step up of the caucus pyramid we talked at the precinct level.  After another vote and by following written instructions we had been provided on how to allocate the percentage of the vote that did not round to a candidate evenly Bernie wound up getting four of our five local delegates to the Democratic Caucus for King County from our district precinct.  One delegate went to Clinton.  King County is twice the size of Rhode Island.  I filled out paperwork and when my voter registration is checked I will be notified that I am a delegate and I'll know where to go and when.  I do know it is on a Sunday.

As one of the delegates to the King County Caucus I will be representing Bernie on behalf of the Democrats in my local district precinct after being duly elected to do so.

 :icon_sunny:

And as RE says, who couldanode?!


"Here's another fine mess you've  gotten me into Ollie!"


Bernie is on a roll.  The rally in Seattle was huge.  Bernie can take the entire West Coast if he keeps up his momentum and that will give him more delegates than Clinton and that is the plan!

 

Despite the media disparaging Bernie and building up Clinton every chance they get, the results in Washington show that some of us still have a few clues and don't drink the mass media Kool-Aid with as much abandon as has been assumed.  Mass media radio is spinning the Sanders win as 'he can't keep up the momentum so why bother'.  The voice of empire speaks to quell Sander's gains.  Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Utah, Washington State may be the beginning of a wave that will crest in California.  We shall see how bewitched people are to the siren song of media puppet string pullers who seek to crash the nation on the cliffs and rocks of Trump or Hillary to maintain their song of oligarchy.

Helping Bernie get that extra delegate was a rewarding experience.  I did some of the talking and helped change a few minds.  I'll have fun at the county caucus.  I might wind up being the dog that makes all the difference, because:

 

Videos off the Smart Phone of Son of K-Dog

I'M REPRESENTING !!!

After the King County Caucus some will go on to the Washington State Caucus as delegates and from there delegates to the D.N.C. will be elected.  That is my understanding of the process so far. 
 
If I bark for Sanders right I suppose I could wind up going to the Washington State Caucus without too much trouble.  I expect getting as far as the D.N.C in Philadelphia could wind up being a bit more 'political'. 
 
If I get to the D.N.C. I know someplace I'll be sure to visit.  Geno’s Steaks.  I think it is where Philadelphia cheese steaks started, I'm not sure.  Regardless I could spend several days in Philadelphia hunting cheese steak sandwitches.  They are my kind of doggie treat.
 
Saturday I did not compare Hillary to Rodan the Flying Reptile even once!  I figured I might be in a crowd where some people actually like her so I was careful what I said.  The most I went in any negative direction regarding Hillary was when I said.
 

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/15kdTQWTch0/hqdefault.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quote:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I don't think she is actually evil but ………

The overall feeling about Hillary behind the closed doors of the elementary school was that she is inconsistent.  A political deal maker who does not have consistency because she is always doing what 'the money' tells her to do.  She blows in the wind and was called a flip flopper.  Sanders was portrayed to be consistent in his positions with thirty years of solid experience working for principles of social inclusion that the Democratic Party takes seriously.  At least on the local level, from what I saw, this appears to be true.  We all know Democratic Party leadership has other priorities living as they do in a pragmatic stratosphere far above the people they represent but at my caucus on Saturday the principles of the Democratic party were explained along with the rules on what we were to do. 

Sanders was also felt to be a 'stronger' anti-war candidate.  I thought that was a good way to put it.  Nice and gentle, and non-confrontational.  One of the caucus rules was that you were not suppose to mention opposition candidates by name.  It is a good rule and it forced concentration on the relative strengths between Bernie and Hillary on their positions and records.  For the most part this rule was observed.  A few times a name or a couple of initials slipped out but when that happened it was always relevant to a point being made and no big deal.

I did point out that Bernie has a better chance of beating 'The Republicans' than Hillary does.

My son told me that he had thought about making it to the caucus on Saturday but he figured getting me to go was good enough.  This turned out to be true.  No way was Sanders going to take all the delegates from our district.  Four of five was the best we were going to do.  He figured the caucus would probably be closed by 4:30 PM too.  We had finished and all gone our separate ways by noon.

Had I checked the weeks mail before Sunday I would have known I had an invitation to Caucus for Bernie Sanders on Saturday March 26th at 9 AM waiting for me.  I might have clued my son in had I seen it but it was a general mailing and did not say where the caucus would be.  Mail is easily ignored anyway.  As things worked out it was all good. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notes from the Locked Ward

rubiogc2smFrom the keyboard of James Howard Kunstler
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rubio

 

Originally Published on Clusterfuck Nation February 8, 2016

 


The remaining Americans sound-of-mind must view the primary election spectacle with mounting sensations of wonder, nausea, and panic. It’s one thing for the financial system to crack up, and another thing for social norms to disintegrate, and still another for the political system to become a locked ward of obvious psychopathology. Even the neurosurgeon on duty went narcoleptic the other night when his name was called to take the stage.

Last week’s candidate “debates” (or boasting contests) only underscored the human frailty on display. Marco Rubio was unmasked as an android with a broken flash drive. For a few moments I thought I was seeing an clip from the old movie Alien. In fact, the Republican melodrama more and more echoes the tone and plot of that story: a hapless, bumbling crew lost in space. One of these nights, something unspeakable is going to shoot out of Donald Trump’s mouth and there will be blood all over the podiums.

The Democratic boasting contest was not more reassuring. Bernie blew his biggest chance yet to harpoon the white whale known as Hillary when he cast some glancing aspersions on Mz It’s-My-Turn’s special side-job as errand girl of the Too-Big-To-Fail banks. Together, Bill and Hillary racked up $7.7 million on 39 speaking gigs to that gang, with Hillary clocking $1.8 million of the total for eight blabs. When Bernie alluded to this raft of grift, MzIMT retorted, “If you’ve got something to say, say it directly.”

There was a lot Bernie could have said, but didn’t. Such as: what did you tell them that was worth over $200,000 a pop? Whatever it was, it must have made them feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Did it occur to you that this might look bad sometime in the near future? Is there any way that this might not be construed as bribery? And how is some formerly middle-class out-of-work average voter supposed to feel about you getting paid more for 45 minutes of flapping your gums than he or she has earned in the past five years?

Bernie could have found a gentlemanly way to say that directly, but perhaps he experienced a sickening precognitive vision of his jibes being used against the party establishment’s candidate in the fall general election. Of course, if it looked like Hillary was going to get elected, the remaining sound-of-mind in this country might be falling over each other to apply for citizenship in Uruguay.

Beyond all the political histrionics, is there not some broad recognition that whoever occupies the White House in 2017 will preside over a financial debacle like unto nothing in scale that the world has ever seen before? With all the reverberating side effects imaginable among the traumatized nations? Something wicked has been creeping through the stock markets since the year began. The velocity and damage are amping up. Credit default swap spreads are yawning like fault lines in a ‘quake. Bankers are watching their share prices collapse. It’s a wonder that panic has not already broken out.

This is not just about Wall Street and its counterparts in London, Shanghai, Tokyo, and Frankfurt. This is the financial world (and underworld) catching up with the Economy of Actual Stuff. In the USA, that economy has bled out like a hapless bystander with a sucking chest wound for the last eight years. Despite all the patriotic sanctimony on view at the Superbowl, the nation appears to be visibly cracking up, along with the fantasy of a permanent global economy.

None of the desperate work-arounds since 2008 have worked around the predicaments of our time. Politics will not abide a rational journey out of our fatal hyper-complexity to something simpler and more consistent with the realities at hand. Expect more and greater craziness as the year lurches on.

 


James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency, and Too Much Magic: Wishful Thinking, Technology and the Fate of the Nation. His novels include World Made By Hand, The Witch of Hebron, Maggie Darling — A Modern Romance, The Halloween Ball, an Embarrassment of Riches, and many others. He has published three novellas with Water Street Press: Manhattan Gothic, A Christmas Orphan, and The Flight of Mehetabel.

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