consultants are sandburs

Saturday, April 02, 2016

DFL Senate district 35 convened, with candidates chosen for both House seats, and the Senate seat.

The turnout was encouraging and the Sanders candidacy brought in young people who will be the future of progressive thought. There were Clinton people, (no young among), and I suppose some like leftovers leftovers from the sad NAFTA '90s. Looked like a bunch that don't care to see transcripts. That lack of basic credible skepticism and curiosity befuddled me. How could anyone buy a high milage used car without knowing its history, how it's been driven, by whom, the wrecks its been in?

That's a brief impression, and the thinking here is still: if there were no Tom Bakk in leadership the state DFL would merit a contribution; while if Bakk's still in the saddle, give to individual DFL'ers you in good conscience CAN trust and support.

WITHHOLDING APPROVAL: How change will happen, how to break bad habits; the dog pees on the carpet you get the message to the dog that peeing on the carpet is not acceptable; else you and the carpet just suffer and suffer long term.

Andy Hillebregt running HD 35A against the unappealing incumbent there.

Wes Volkenant running HD 35B against the equally unappealing incumbent there.

Roger Johnson, by acclimation was requested by the convention delegates to run again against Jim Abeler for the SD 35 seat, after Roger had hastily mounted his previous run seeking the balance of the Minnesota Senate term vacated by Branden Petersen who quit the legislature for personal reasons mid-term. If in Petersen's place with the colleagues he had on that side of the aisle and having to deal with them and their games and prejudices, I'd probably have gotten to feel jaded after a short part of an elected term of service too, if in such a place.

But projecting my feelings onto another is unsound. Petersen's reasons for walking as/when he did are his, not necessarily the same as mine.

Other things were done, slowly, while what everybody came for, selecting delegates and delegate support positions for the next DFL convening levels, Congressional District and State Convention - was held to last to forestall a mass exodus mid-session were that interesting part of things set earlier.

The Bern was felt, it was good, it was a message. Hopefully, unlike the GOP with the Ron Paul energy among younger people being callously rebuffed, hopefully ever so hopefully, the DFL will not be so cringingly dumb. Republicans are who they are; but the DFL has the capability of not missteping out of sheer spite. That being said while admitting some may well regard my extreme distaste and distrust toward the Clintons as wrong headed and not going along to get along DFL-style. Hey, though, she took the money; she's as much a money taker as Ted Cruz, re Wall Street, lawyers lobbyists, the energy elite. Open Secrets disclosures in earlier posts in fact indicate more the money taker than Cruz, indeed, in a league with JEB! And Goldman Sachs invests, they don't give freebies.

Lori Swanson and the State party treasurer gave speeches, too heavy on the "however you may feel we need solidarity going into November backing party candidates" spiel; knowing full well how SD35 precinct caucusing turned out a solid majority rejection of the Clintons and Clintonian ways and means, including insensitivities to the rest of us while favoring instead six-figure-a-pop wall street dog-pony stuff, Russian uranium, much else.

BOTTOM LINE: Transcripts matter, just like black lives do.

And with the Sanders candidacy grounded on personal convictions held and advocated over decades, consistently for what's best for the populace and what's sound foreign war avoidance policy, that matters. Especially so with the other candidate tardy in reaching some positions cutting contrary to a held 1% status and pecuniary interests attached to that status on the part of the spousal pair opposing Sanders.

Consistency matters. It matters big time, since "trust me" from the Clintons is not something I'd try to take to the bank [not even to the Goldman Sachs investment bank].

One thing the Clinton people must absorb - the question is not "a woman" as president. The question is "that woman" as president.

In that regard, I would want to see Goldman Sachs transcripts and State Department emails related to returns per this web search.

Arab Spring, and all that BS in getting Hosni Mubarak and relatives/cronies out of their strangle hold on Egypt but letting the Egyptian military and Israel continue holding Egyptian reins of power; while converting Libya from prosperous to a basket case where Islamic State jihadist types run rampant and it is a staging ground for weaponry used in deposing Qaddafi to be shipped along with individuals to Syria; all that is most suspect as a long term beneficial foreign policy NATO advantage.

That incredibly shameful gloating over death "We Came, We Saw, He died," video shows an individual, gender aside, unfit to be in government. Anywhere in government. Unfit for dog catcher. Using Roman Imperial banter as if a jolly fine jest about a modern day Rome having disposed of a modern day Carthage is unacceptable. You do not kill another head of state, whatever propaganda you've ginned up, and then go on video with a "We came, we saw, he's dead" laugh line.

It is beyond grotesque. It is incendiary. It is bloodthirsty. It is too disrespectful of all of the third world, and moreover, too flat-out stupid to do it on camera and to then pretend to be trustworthy to run our country non-stupidly and without a public show of unduly brutal hubris unbefitting the office of Secretary of State, and more so, unbefitting the office of President.

TRANSCRIPTS: While disarming a Qaddafi affront to the worldwide post-WW II banker arrangements being kept intact while also contact info might have been provided on who new in Egypt might facilitate banking and business dealings (if paid to give a speech); all that stuff might justify Goldman Sachs leadership feeling "that woman" is hunkey dory with them and a national leader they'd welcome; the clear fact is we are contemplating a perspective among a broader United States population wanting "good" government beyond what Goldman Sachs' highly compensated mover and shaker honchos might deem "good" government from atop their lofty opulent Wall Street towers.

So the problem now in 2016 and before in 2008 was not, either time, "a woman," but each time, "that woman."

Clintonian DFL'ers need to absorb that distinction as relevant.

Offer the job to Elizabeth Warren as Democratic Party candidate for President, that's as good as Bernie; their quality and integrity are about interchangeable, and Warren is younger. [a clarifying update - as best understood, Warren and Cantwell (next paragraph) and Ted Cruz are roughly contemporaries, at least a generation younger than Clinton, Trump and Sanders, each of whom is roughly the age of Ronald Reagan when first taking office in California - readers correct this impression in a comment if it is in error]

Give me a business success such as Maria Cantwell, Democratic Senator from Washington, as a moderate woman who could be a sound federal chief executive; I'd happily listen. I'd have zero problem supporting a Maria Cantwell inner party choice of ongoing candidate and I'd gladly conform my thinking to such a selection being sound.

Give me Hillary Clinton as an inner party cramdown against the clear will of the populace in attending and backing Bernie appearances unlike the small crowds of connected party regulars and their Clinton fund raiser dinners; well, giving me that means disrespect for the entirety of the Bernie insurgency - disrespect and disdain of a degree suggesting why not stay home. Stay home if the Republicans on their side show honor toward the Trump insurgency; but swallow the awful choice if they Ted Cruz us the same way the Democratic inner party intends to Hillary Clinton us. That would be as bad or worse than the JEB! - Hillary appearance of things six to twelve months ago as the nation's likely two-party inner party 2016 presidential package.

At least JEB! is out. The Bush royal family had no traction. Now sweep the other imperial family aside, and have us something more like a real choice. A Trump vs. Sanders election would be a fresh breeze, as is shown by how staunchly the corporate media is intent to dissuade us from it.

____________FURTHER UPDATE_____________
A most distasteful inner party DFL thing done to the delegates was to have Swanson and that central state party treasurer show up and shake a Supreme Court Justices bogey man at us. It was done crudely and was an insult to our collective intelligence. [update note - neither individual was agenda listed, but lo, each showed up with what looked to me to be a spiel instigated by the Clinton people who know how distasteful she is to some Sanders people, hence wanting to jolly us all into support the candidate whoever she ends up being stuff]

The fact is true, we need more Hugo Black, Bill Douglas, William Brennen quality on that bench, yes, but it will not come from Hillary Clinton. Bernie yes, and we know Ted Cruz would find a Scalia clone, a Roberts clone, an Alito surrogate or two, etc., but a simple fact is Trump is enough anti-establishment that he might be expected to pack a court as well or likely better than either of the Clintons have (for their two White House terms); and Trump if anything is not married to the lending bankers that bone picked his business firm bankruptcy carcasses, and that's to his liking. There is little Donald Trump to John Roberts. There is this nagging feeling Clinton, the Clintons, happily navigate within a Citizens United world, regardless of whatever the lady says. It, Citizens United thinking, is, by Goldman Sachs speech example, a worldview they understand and from which they attained great levels of career politician prosperity for themselves, spouses and child.

Honestly explain to me, what has Hillary PAClady in her endeavors to hold against the Citizens United Roberts court decision? What? Bloody nothing is the answer. It wholly befits her ways and means.

___________FURTHER UPDATE_____________
One of the more interesting exercises at the SD35 convention was the ranked choice opportunity to have at the four pages of fine-print "SD35 2O16 CAUCUS RESOLUTIONS." While possibly not representative of universally felt priorities among attendees, in order my first four choices were, respectively, listed items 30, 25, 27 and 32 (for those still holding their RESOLUTIONS pages. Since some readers may have not attended, and others may no longer hold the pages, they were:

30. Be it resolved that the MN DFL support eliminating all super delegates for all future elections.

25. Be it resolved that the MN DFL support legislation, such as the Democracy for All bill, which would overturn the Supreme Court's ruling in Citizens Unitd through constitutional amendment.

27. Be it resolved that the MN DFL support establishing term limits on congress and senate to no more than two 6-year terms for Senate and no more than four 2-year terms for Concress and prevent members from lobbying for no less than five years after their term of service.

32. Be it resolved that the MN DFL support abolishing super pacs.

It would have been nice had the list been provided online before the event for the greatest deliberative value, but it was not, so forgive any transcription error above.

You must first reform process if you are to reform substance. Procedural rigging of things such as the superdelegate affront are repulsive to your vote counting when the deck's been stacked by the entrenched beneficiaries of superdelegate nonsense. It offends.

Fifth and sixth choices here were:

35. [...] eliminating the Electoral College and using the popular vote.

36 [...] redistricting conducted and voted upon by a non-partisan citizxen committee which would exclude current or former federal or state elected officials.

For those caring about the collective will of attendees but who may not have held onto their blue AGENDA sheets, or for those who may have not attended, a copy of the "Resolutions report" can be requested by email from "Resolutions Chair Laurie Elvig" at:

Hopefully that email address was correctly transcribed, while I have not yet tested it.

Blue sheet text did expressly limit that report access to the group "delegate/alternate of this Convention" (where the "caucus" vs "convention" terminology is unclear to me), but given that publicly held elections will be forthcoming and voters in some measure may care what party caucus-goers believe are principles on which political decision making should or may hinge, limiting that information to only a handful of people who went to a middle school room in Coon Rapids seems counterproductive to having a greatest informed electorate. In any event, I went, so Ms. Elvig shall be emailing me, per request, an e-copy of the resolutions as handed out on paper, and whatever she condenses responses to, in committee with others, to produce a report.

__________FURTHER UPDATE___________
As to that Justices bogey man thing, Eric Ferguson over at MPP echoes the same theme, and if I understand things Ferguson in one Senate District holds an official position. So he states an official position.

I honestly cannot say whether I'd anticipate Trump court appointees to be any worse than Clinton ones; and I doubt Ferguson can either. With the Cruz spouse having been a Bush official, a Goldman Sachs Texas operative, and a CFR maven, I can guess that perhaps even Cruz/Clinton appointees might differ little; although Cruz can be expected to throw raw red meat to the Jesus Jockeys, to inflame the choice-hatred, because that kind of things fits the personna he's adopted as his character, while taking Wall Street, lawyer/lobbyist, and energy industry money in the top five in such categories per Open Secrets, along with Clinton.

BOTTOM LINE: There might be sense in seeing what Trump's insurgency would yield, if the Sanders insurgency gets deep sixed by an inner party elite putsch where a bulk of that inner party elite is not greatly unlike Heidi Cruz.

Remember, the Warren Court was succeeded by the Burgher Court, and that was Nixon who set that up while setting the stage for the Rhenquist Court, and you have to look back for days of wine and roses to Eisenhower's promise to Earl Warren (then the governor of California) that Warren would get the next Supreme Court appointment in exchange for officially liking Ike, and it turned out the next vacancy was Chief Justice.

Those were the days of better decision making, Justice Harlan mouthing the stuff the majority since Burgher's appointment has been making majority dogma; and the one sound thought is that Franklin Roosevelt knew how to use a Court packing threat to create responsiveness with Sanders bright enough and having comparable New Deal integrity, to have learned the lesson. Nine is nobody's magic number. Fifteen would do, if appointments were to come from a President Sanders with advice and consent of a Democratic Senate, Blue Dogs sadly being brake on any overenthusiasm as they were in trying to reform healthcare.

Back to the Ferguson MPP item, this link, it is interesting how he segues from a headline, "Why conservatives are freaking out over Obama picking Scalia replacement," to what has the faint odor of an organized fear-the-unknown propaganda putsch on multiple apparently disjoint fronts, by Clinton people. Always a skeptic, it's been a character fault of mine for decades. I fear Clinton appointments, based on the known rather than the unknown. A TPP loving, satisfied with Citizens United court from Goldman Sachs has no beauty to my beholding, and admittedly that is in theory since my crystal ball is no better nor worse than Lori Swanson's, just different.

______________FURTHER UPDATE________________
In a perfect world, one of the better RESOLUTION proposals was, as stated above:

27. Be it resolved that the MN DFL support establishing term limits on congress and senate to no more than two 6-year terms for Senate and no more than four 2-year terms for Concress and prevent members from lobbying for no less than five years after their term of service.

Were I to have been on the DFL Resolution Committee that produced it, I would have felt proud, but would have sought amended text if allowed, to read at least "...and prevent members from lobbying or giving paid speeches for no less than five years after their term of service," while also liking the thought that such constraints might apply as well to cabinet heads and commission chairs such as head up the FCC, FTC, etc.; indeed, to their senior rank and file employees, Senate and House Committee staff, commission members aside from only chair occupants, etc., etc., everywhere there is a revolving door, and then also look at curbing sweetheart book deals. The one Washington law firm was keeping A.G. Holder's chair warm and his corner office open for him during his public service, his again after he left the Justice Department with no Wall Street banker having gone to jail over the 2007-2008 subprime securitized mortgage shenanigans or with regard to the subsequent market collapse and bailout of AIG and bank billionaires running shops that clearly stood too failed to be allowed big.

Back on point - that one paid speech loophole, you could shove a Goldman Sachs skyscraper through it.

__________FINAL UPDATE__________
Above: The names of the caucus-endorsed SD35 candidates have been highlighted, since despite digression, the post properly is about them.

An email inquiry has been sent to each of the three asking for website, donation, contact, and issues information - things that on the sidebar can be posted either directly or by links; and as we approach November a hope would be timely central-item posting here might highlight campaign activity and needs as they develop.

Finally a parting thought, Donald Trump must be pressed for specficity. How will he, specifically and not with handwaving generality, fix the Peggy Scott, Eric Lucero, Abigale Whelan mediocrity problem? Absent that, how can America be Great Again? It cannot.

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