Sanders vs. Clinton

Remember when you took those standardized tests in school and you had to decipher analogies? Here’s one that came to mind the other day:

Humphrey:McGovern :: Clinton:Sanders

Do you remember 1972? We managed to get George McGovern the Democratic presidential nomination over establishment candidate Hubert Humphrey.

And do you remember the general election? At Pitzer College I finished my dinner quickly in the dining room at McConnell Center and headed for the TV room in my dorm, Holden Hall. I never even made it to the TV room before women coming out said, “Don’t bother. It’s all over.” We got four more years of Nixon.

For my friends who are Democrats, I ask that you think about that before you cast your vote in your state’s primary next year.


that was the week that was

Last week was rather amazing, wasn’t it?

The Supreme Court did the Right Thing on two counts.

On Thursday it focused on the intent and not the letter of the law and ruled that the subsidies in the Affordable Healthcare Act were constitutional, therefore avoiding what might have been chaos in the healthcare world.

The next day the court upheld marriage equality. As my friend Boston Pobble pointed out, there is a lot more work to be done, but this is a big, big step in the right direction.

Also on Friday President Obama delivered a powerful eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney, and reminded us that an act that what was intended to start a race war has done more to bring us together than anything in many years.

Friday evening the USA women beat China 1-0 in the World Cup soccer quarterfinals and will advance to the semi-finals against Germany on Tuesday.

On Saturday, Bishop Michael Curry of North Carolina was overwhelmingly elected 27th Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church on the first ballot. He is the first African American to hold that position. Thanks to Susan Russell for this quote from his post-election press conference:

quoteIt’s marriage. It’s not gay marriage; it’s not straight marriage
— it’s marriage

That was the week that was, and what a week it was.


my new favorite comic

When we were in Gilroy we subscribed to the San Jose Mercury News and the San Francisco Chronicle. Here in Hemet we get the Inland Empire newspaper, the Press-Enterprise, and the Los Angeles Times.

The Times has a comic strip I haven’t seen elsewhere. It’s called  Prickly City, and it certainly comes from the left wing of the political spectrum. It is so on and gets things so right so often. The author loves to go after politicians and presidential candidates in general, and he certainly has no love for Hillary. Here’s Saturday’s cartoon.

PricklyCity

Now don’t get me wrong. I like Hillary. I support Hillary. I am voting for Hillary in the primary next year. And in the general election, barring any unforeseen upsets. I want to see Hillary elected president in November 2016 and I want to enjoy her inauguration ceremony in January 2017.

But two things can be equally true, and Hillary, as much as I like her and support her, is far from perfect. So I enjoy Prickly City, which does a great job of getting it right so consistently.


one side benefit of moving south

MSJfromArmoursmallIt occurred to me that there is at least one side benefit of our moving to Southern California. I doubt that our two Democrat votes will be missed in the greater Silicon Valley area. There are plenty of those here. But I think that adding two Democrat votes to the Riverside County electorate would be a good thing.

There is a Democrat Party Headquarters in downtown Hemet. I’m thinking of spending some time volunteering there as I begin networking and get acquainted with the community as it exists today.


priorities

I encountered a new blog last week, thanks to my Catholic and Episcopal Facebook friends. It’s leave it lay where Jesus flang it, written by Margaret, who describes herself as “an Episcopal priest in Eagle Butte, South Dakota on the Cheyenne River Reservation.”

Last week she wrote about the real human cost of the sequester among the rural poor Native Americans.

Regarding the local social services program she says:

…the clients themselves have been cut off –they have received no monies since the beginning of March. They are coming to my door asking for heating fuel, food, clothes, diapers. Children are at risk. There are no Tribal programs that can assist these folks, they are mostly disabled, elderly with grandchildren in the home, or are desperate for work. Last night, after a funeral, I delivered left over food to people’s homes. Funeral food to a family of six of baloney sandwiches, biscuits, two apples, two oranges and some chocolate cake.

Meanwhile, Congress has passed a bill to allow the FAA to shift around funds and avoid the furlough of air traffic controllers. The wealthy and influential, those with a voice and those with influence, cannot be inconvenienced. The poor, the young and elderly, are forgotten and ignored.

It is a tautology to ask what is wrong with our society.


power of love

I saw this bumper sticker a couple of Sundays ago at Trader Joe’s. Given that the quote is from Jimi Hendrix, it’s obviously been around for a while. And considering the generation from which I come, I’m surprised that I haven’t come across it before, but I sure don’t remember it.

In any case, the sentiment is spot-on.

When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace.


artists

Maybe I need to add some serious fiction to my reading rotation.

Whenever I become discouraged (which is on alternate Tuesdays, between three and four) I lift my spirits by remembering: The artists are on our side! I mean those poets and painters, singers and musicians, novelists and playwrights who speak to the world in a way that is impervious to assault because they wage the battle for justice in a sphere which is unreachable by the dullness of ordinary political discourse.

—Howard Zinn, thanks to Jane Redmont


social networks, civility, and the election

A lot of electronic ink has been spilled over the topic of social networks and the election, both within the social media and by the mainstream media. Those with opposing views have been hidden or at worst de-friended on Facebook, as has been mentioned so many times.

I am among the guilty. I hid at least one FB friend who was sharing an excessive number of pro-Romney links. And I liked, and hence shared, a fair number of pro-Obama links, along with posting a few of my own. I stopped that about three weeks before the election when a sensible person called for civility and not being in our friends faces with our presidential preferences. That was good advice, and I complied, as painful as it was at times. After all, no one was going to change my opinion, and I was going to change no one’s. I admit that I lost control Facebook-wise on election night, but was well-behaved the three weeks up until then. In the end I lost no Facebook friends during election season, though I have no idea how many friends might have hidden me.

The popular vote was close. We know that. Certainly people had legitimate reasons for supporting Romney, but I breathed a deep sigh of relief when CNN called the election for Obama. I have not changed my views that:

  • Romney did not have a thought-out plan for the economy.
  • Women’s health issues would have been set back forty years or more under Romney.
  • The environment would have suffered and renewable energy would have taken a big hit.
  • We would have had a president who had no sense of finesse or diplomacy with respect to foreign policy.
  • Romney wanted to be president because it would be his latest, greatest achievement, and not out of any real concern for the country. That smirk always troubled me.

Maybe I’m wrong on some or all of the above, but I feel safer and more hopeful with Obama’s re-election, even with a split congress.

As for Facebook and social networks, let’s forget all of that and get back to being friends, sharing our thoughts, and respecting each other when we disagree.


looking towards the November election

Given the fact that the outcome of the November presidential election is still very much up in the air, I am reviewing my alternatives should the Republican candidate win.

My first option is to get used to hiding under the covers curled up in a fetal position.

My second option is to learn well this song.

We’ll see.


Angela Davis 2012 Pitzer College Commencement Address

I graduated from Pitzer College in 1975 and hung around Claremont for the next two years (a Claremont Cockroach, as I’ve said). Angela Davis was a visiting faculty member of the Claremont Colleges Black Studies program in 1975, which I did not know until seeing this video. I was rather surprised, since I thought I was somewhat in touch with what was going on there that year. But apparently the who thing was kept very secret. In any case, this is a great address and very much in alignment with the values of Pitzer.