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ron bailey
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Posted: 15 June 2024 at 4:41pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

At this point, I'm starting to become more concerned about the role the other candidates will play. I would have thought the interest in RFK, Jr would have fizzled as the sideshow it is by now, but he seems to still be polling at the high single digits. Apparently Jill Stein is on the ballot in battleground states as well, where every single vote counts. No way to know which side those throwaway votes would otherwise go to. 
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Andrew Bitner
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Posted: 15 June 2024 at 5:05pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

There are always third party candidates.

What some fail to realize is this:

Suppose a Green or Libertarian or whatever wins. Suppose that happens. Exactly who in Congress is going to support their agenda? Presidents have a lot of power, sure, but they can't make laws happen or compel a Supreme Court, loaded with people appointed by one of the two big parties, to rule their way. They are lame ducks from day one and the world knows it.

The only ones who don't are those ignorant enough to vote for them.

If you want a viable third party, you have to build it up from the bottom. Do the work. Get candidates elected, build grass roots organizations, take a state legislature or a governorship and prove yourselves. Aiming at the top job in the country is a ridiculous publicity stunt and a guaranteed failure unless you have a lot of support built up beneath them.

And no third party has come within spitting distance of achieving that.
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David Allen Perrin
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Posted: 15 June 2024 at 7:07pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Lawerence O’Donnell sums it up nicely for me at least….

Biden on his WORST day is better than Trump on his best.  
This hand wringing over Biden’s age is f-ing nonsense.  

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Jason Czeskleba
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Posted: 15 June 2024 at 7:12pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

It really does sadden me that so many people fail to grasp the actual purpose of voting: to try to move public policy in your preferred direction.  Instead, people seem to think of voting as nothing more than a way to make a statement about themselves.  It blows my mind that there are people considering "punishing" Biden by not voting for him because of his Middle East policies.  In terms of their desired outcome, they are of course punishing themselves far more than anyone else.  I'm always annoyed when I hear someone saying a candidate "has to earn my vote."  No, it's your job to find the viable (as in, has a chance of winning) candidate whose policies most closely align with yours.  Voting is like taking a bus.  There may not be a bus that is going all the way to your desired destination, but you should at least get on one that's going in the right direction.  And one that actually has gas in the tank.

One would think the burgeoning theocracy of the Supreme Court (promoting their dual religions of God and Guns) would be more than enough to motivate people.  I'm certainly frightened by the prospect of Thomas and Alito retiring during a second Trump term, allowing Trump to appoint two more young partisan hacks who can cement the theocratic supermajority for the next several decades.
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Rebecca Jansen
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Posted: 15 June 2024 at 9:07pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Right now if people truly wanted to see a new viable party in the U.S. they could wipe out the shell of what used to be the Republican party to the point where it is discredited and something new would have to take it's place, probably some sort of more stable conservative party. Sadly there might be just enough reasons supplied to not vote for Biden besides age that in the words of Mr. Humphries they will "do themselves a mischief". Only by a complete short term self-interest of a very small number of people and assorted lunatic fringes should there be any votes for somebody other than Joe; someone who worked his way up to the top job the old, one might say conservative, way. As opposed to guys with zero experience and a huge front of b.s. and 'reality' tv shows or conspiracy podcasts... but, as I say possibly one trip or stumble away. Oh, but you were never a democracy ever anyway, which is the new line of Orwellian parrot bait!

Even at best there will be a decade of cleaning up after all this. I sometimes wonder what an alternate world where Gore followed Clinton might look like (perhaps the dividing line involved divorce, Tipper was very unpopular with many people I knew). Then we'd have been spared 'Swift Boat Veterans For Truth', Dan Rather would still be reading the network news, empty trucks would never have criss-crossed Iraq for years at high taxpayer expense while soldiers kept being send back over and over until many plain broke, Phil Donahue might still be hosting a discussion program, and even could have a WTC with two towers rather than just one with memorial fountains. That seems when Stop The Steal signs were really needed from some of the figures that emerged long after 2000, especially out of Florida. That seems to be your own Tienanmen Square thing where nobody can talk about it. Those who lectured 'lefties' not to whine about an election as well as how they have consequences have mostly proven an unequaled capacity to whine about one themselves at every possible opportunity based on nothing at all. The 'lefties' seeing leadership not left enough for them really need to give their heads a shake, and soon.

Edited by Rebecca Jansen on 15 June 2024 at 9:08pm
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Casey Sager
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Posted: 15 June 2024 at 10:18pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

I always find it amazing how many US citizens have no grasp on how their own government works. Sure, there are people that are willfully ignorant, but it appears there are a large percentage of people who believe the POTUS is responsible for a LOT of things they have no control over.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 16 June 2024 at 5:05pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Harry Truman briefly sported on his desk a plaque that read THE BUCK STOPS HERE.

It seems many to this day take it literally.

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David Miller
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Posted: 16 June 2024 at 7:29pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

A significant omission from the candidate health discourse is makeup. I don't know if the media considers the subject childish or problematic or what, but whatever one might say about Biden, his cosmetics are applied tastefully and professionally, but his opponent's makeup has always been weird, and it's gotten significantly worse.

If my mother started going out in public sweating though a cracked shell of clumsily smeared orange makeup, our family would be having a conversation about putting her in a home, not supporting her revanchist presidential campaign.

I am however relieved that as culty as MAGA may become, there still hasn't been a mass embrace of orange-face. That would be disconcerting.
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Rodrigo castellanos
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Posted: 17 June 2024 at 6:24am | IP Logged | 9 post reply

Sure, there are people that are willfully ignorant, but it appears there are a large percentage of people who believe the POTUS is responsible for a LOT of things they have no control over.

Double edged sword, that.

Makes a lot of people say stuff like: "You can't expect Biden to do anything about issue X, that's unfair, he's just the President!"

Well, if the position isn't that important it shouldn't be the end of days and a mortal blow to democracy if Trump wins. He'd be "just the President" too, after all.


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Casey Sager
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Posted: 17 June 2024 at 1:41pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Rodrigo - That would normally be true, unless the POTUS wants to consolidate more power under the executive branch as Trump plans on doing.

Plus, he already tried a coup, the first time in my lifetime I can say that about a POTUS.

So no, Trump wouldn't "just be the President too".

What I was referring to was things like the cost of a gallon of gas or rising prices at the grocery store.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 17 June 2024 at 1:52pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

Ah, it’s 1972 and there I am buying gas for my 1971 Volkswagen Beetle.

35¢ a gallon.

Thing to keep in mind tho, was that what seems like a pittance to us was higher that what we’d been paying before the Arab/Israeli war of 1967. (Imagine the scenario: “Oh! You want to take sides with our bitter enemy, Israel? Uh, you DO realize we have most of the oil, right?”)

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ron bailey
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Posted: 17 June 2024 at 2:39pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

I only hope that there is the foresight, currently while both sides are bruised and unpopular, to start thinking ahead for when it is time to truly think of the next generation and what their needs are. If we're all holding our noses during this election, 2028 will be a blank slate, and the side best prepared to speak to what the nation really needs will win. It scares me that the only evidence we have of any such preparation is Project 2025 (2029 if Trump loses).
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