Monday, January 20, 2020

Bloomberg said it, the uncomfortable truth

We like to think that the property we own, and the successes we have, are earned fair and square.  


We know better. 


     "I also know that my story might have turned out very differently if I had been black, and that more black Americans of my generation would have ended up with far more wealth, had they been white. Instead, they’ve had to struggle to overcome great odds, because their families started out further behind, and excluded from opportunities — in housing, in employment, education, and other areas.”
             Michael Bloomberg

Bloomberg


Michael Bloomberg said it aloud. There isn't equal opportunity. It isn't a square deal.

He chose the site of the race riot massacre of black owned businesses in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1921 to make his speech and meet with the black community. The Greenwood Massacre destroyed 35 blocks of the wealthiest black neighborhood in America, called the Black Wall Street. He was attempting to repair the damage caused by his endorsement of a stop-and-frisk policy. 

Bloomberg spoke to the issue of inequality. Michael Bloomberg represents an America of stratified wealth, the rich getting richer, the poor and middle class falling behind. 

He represents meritocratic success, at its pinnacle. His TV advertising starts off with photos of young Michael and narration affirming he had a middle class start. His biography communicates boundless American potential. 

His bearing and manner project alpha male confidence. He knows Donald Trump is the phony and he the real deal.

To black Americans he represents something else, privilege and entitlement. Johns Hopkins, Harvard Business School, and Wall Street were not accessible to black Americans born, like Bloomberg, in 1942, into a legally segregated America. Bloomberg's stop-and-frisk policy wasn't targeting Wall Street bankers. It targeted street crime. The policy was not another Greenwood Massacre, but it is the shadow and remnant of it, cleaned up for 21st Century sensibilities. Young males of color were stopped on the street, patted down, told not to resist. It was public humiliation.

To some white Americans Bloomberg represents the unspoken rebuke by limousine liberal Democrats in the meritocracy party, telling struggling whites not to whine about how the deck is stacked against them. Inequality? Sure, but Michael Bloomberg got ahead, and if you did not, then you didn't measure up. (Yesterday's Guest Post describes this unspoken insult.)

Bloomberg spoke a truth about inequality. 

Every American--every human--stands on the shoulders of parents, grandparents, and community. Black Americans have been treated unfairly. White people squirm at internalizing that reality because they also experience a second understanding, that white people, too--they themselves-- have also been treated unequally and unfairly some point and no one likesto be blamed.

Americans observe inequality every day. Most Americans internalize the notion that inequality is inevitable and ultimately consistent with the American principle of liberty and justice for all. After all, we have freedom to choose careers, work-life balance, life partners, family size, whether or not to drink or use drugs, whether to drop out or continue schooling. Exercising that freedom, we then experience the unequal consequences of our choices.

But we know it is way more complicated than that. 

We know people do not start out the Monopoly Game of real life even. Instead, we start with property already occupied, and some neighborhoods are way better than others, and parents earn different amounts of money as they pass Go.

Michael Bloomberg holds a nearly unique position in America. He has become gigantically wealthy dealing with some of the wealthiest and most sophisticated people in the country. He has credibility to lead a change in the system, to insist we tax wealth at a higher rate, to advocate education and health policies that push more national wealth away from capital and toward workers. 

He could do what Bernie Sanders could not. Bloomberg could surprise America. He could surprise progressives.

Real change is unlikely to come from the top, spurred by a prudent recognition by the wealthy that the deck is too unfairly stacked for a democracy to survive. That isn't how change happens. Historically in America progressive change happens because people at the bottom demand it, as in the Progressive Era, and again in the New Deal, and then in the Civll Rights movement.

Still, Bloomberg voiced the uncomfortable truth about the allocation of wealth in America. It isn't fair. Not to blacks, not to Latinos, not to women, not to anyone. 

We don't start out even. And a lot of people are restless.




Sunday, January 19, 2020

How the Democrats lost the working class

Democrats have a "yuppie gloss." It's killing us with working class voters.


Stodder
A Guest Post by Jim Stodder


An economist looks at why it is a truck driver or factory worker or waitress might actually prefer that "orange-sprayed structurally coffed liar and rich bastard" to the the Democratic candidate.


"The Rise of the Meritocracy, Or How the Liberal-Left Lost the Working Class"     

The first thing to understand is that it wasn’t just racism or anti-immigrant prejudice. 
For verification, look at Obama-to-Trump voters. Two studies estimate that a crucial 11% to 13% of Trump’s 2016 vote came from people who voted for Obama in 2012.    Click: Rasmussen

These are mostly white voters, but there are also many Latinos. In a December Pew poll, 31% of Latinos approve of Trump’s performance as President, with 23% approving strongly: Click: Pew.  
The second thing is that this is not just a US phenomenon --- most European center-left parties have seen the collapse of their working class base, that of Britain’s Labour Party being only the most recent.
The most obvious factor uniting right-populist leaders – Trump, Johnson, Le Pen, Salvini, Orban – is the stoking of racism. But they wrap their racism up in an anti-elite anti-intellectual package.  
Go back to the roots of today’s progressive Democrats – the student New Left of the 1960s, which is where I come from. Most of us couldn’t have cared less about the proletariat. They were racist, supported the war, and might beat us up.  
We cared about self-directed work, and our radical vision was a society where all would have equal access to education – no more segregation by class, race, or income – and where the most capable, not the rich, would make all the important decisions.
But there was also a dark patch on the road to an egalitarian society.  One of the first to see it was an English sociologist, Michael Young, who wrote “The Rise of the Meritocracy” in 1958 – a sort of “social-science-fiction.”  A militant egalitarian, Young nonetheless recognized that if Labor's goal of equal educational opportunity were achieved, and education became the basis of social advancement then the new hierarchy would form, a “meritocracy.”  (Young coined the term.)   
It would be more individualized and “natural” than any previous aristocracy, defined person-by-person and by scientific testing. But it would still be hereditary, since intellectual ability and skill are largely heritable. He saw a self-perpetuating elite coming to power in the early 21st Century, and it scared him.
Today's Left has a renewed interest in socialism – but center-left parties like the Democrats have largely given up on the idea of more social power because of what you do. They are rather fighting for your rights no matter who you are – gay, trans-gender, of color, foreign-born, female.    
It is no longer that factory workers or waitresses deserve power because what they do is necessary. It is rather that they, or more likely their sons and daughters, should have an equal right to education – so that they will no longer be factory workers or waitresses.  

I think most liberal Dems would say the biggest problem in America today is economic inequality. I agree. I suspect many of them, especially those with higher income and status, would define this inequality not so much in terms of outcome, but in terms of opportunity. The Democratic Party’s idea of a “more perfect union” has become a more perfect meritocracy.  
This isn't the Democratic Party of FDR, with left-labor and Marxist support, believing that working people as a group should have more power. This move to equal opportunity has better protects women, people of color and other minorities, but something has been lost.
To see what’s been lost, say you’re a young white male. Let’s say you’re a truck driver. If you’re dissatisfied with your situation, what does the Democratic party say to you? Basically, that you should go back to school. If you feel frustrated and haven’t had a fair shot, well, they would say you are simply wrong, and that as a white male, you are actually the beneficiary of historically unjustified privileges. You’re lucky we don’t give that truck to someone more deserving.
Can we now begin to see how Donald Trump might look more attractive to this guy than Hillary Clinton? Or more than Pete Buttigieg or Elizabeth Warren, despite her folksy charm? Better someone who was born rich and has lots of construction workers and cleaning ladies working for him. He may be a rich bastard, but he knows he’s a lucky bastard, born lucky. Better him than someone who thinks they’ve earned all their wealth and privilege. And who thinks that you must really be a stupid shit. Otherwise, why would a white guy be driving a truck?
To many of us on the Left, it is absurd that this scion of New York real estate sells himself as anti elitist. We sneer at his gold-plated escalators. How can millions of working class folks can see this orange-sprayed, structurally-coiffed liar as closer to their interests than Hillary Clinton, as more trustworthy than our people? But they do. It’s visceral.  
I hope it’s not too late for the Democratic Party to rediscover its labor roots.  Personally, I like and trust Warren most of all, and hope she has a chance.  But I suspect that only Sanders or Biden can mute that yuppie gloss on the Democratic party. Sanders is more of the real deal, but he hasn’t been attacked by Trump yet. I suspect that’s because Trump would rather face him than Biden.  
That yuppie gloss is more than skin deep. Unless we Democrats become more than advocates of better meritocracy, we can kiss the ass of the working class – not just of whites but lots of Latinos and others – as they leave our party. And kiss goodbye to political power for a long time.  
But the best reason to reject meritocracy is that it’s morally empty. Inheriting intelligence and skill is not so different from inheriting other wealth. Yes, you have to work at it, but that’s true for other forms as well. And for my fellow boomer professionals, it’s time for a politics that is more than our glorified self-image. 

                                          -----     -----     -----

[Jim Stodder teaches international economics and securities regulation at Boston University, with recent research on how carbon taxes and rebates can be both income equalizing and green. He was a college classmate, then received a Ph.D. from Yale in economics. His website: www.jimstodder.com]





Saturday, January 18, 2020

How Boomers Screwed it up, continued: Student Deferrments

War, huh, yeah. What is it good for? Absolutely nothing. . . .

War has caused unrest within the younger generation--

Induction then destruction.

Who wants to die, ah, war-huh, good god, why'all? 

What is it good for? Absolutely nothing.

  Lyrics, "War (What's it Good For)", 1970


Selective Service Channeling 

Opening rounds of the "meritocracy" divide.


There was a time when military service was near universal for men who met minimum standards of fitness. During the Vietnam War era, service was not universal.

Some of us escaped.

In the 1960's the Selective Service system had a policy both of filling the manpower needs of the military and "developing more human beings in the national interest," as General Lewis Hershey put it in a memo that became known as the "channeling" memo. During the Vietnam War era the military drafted 11 million men out of a pool of nearly 27 million. 

There was a conscious decision by military and civilian authorities to exempt people they thought might better serve the country in civilian roles--doctors, dentists, people in professions. Some of the motivation no doubt was protecting the children of the privileged, but there was another idea in the zeitgeist. We survived WW2 in part because our scientists built an atomic bomb before Germany or Japan did. The Soviets had just beat us to put up Sputnik. We were losing the science war. Our colleges were part of the war effort. The resultant policy was to feed the presumed best and brightest into the colleges and not waste them on battlefields. 

This meant some young men got "deferments" from service, which likely would mean exemption from service if the war ended soon, as promised.

It split the generation. College students avoided the draft, made progress toward a financially rewarding degree, enjoyed the free spirit of the 1960's counterculture, and waited out the war. Poorer kids went to war, viewed on television as a combination of misery and wanton destruction. It was not an era of "thank you for your service." The war of search and destroy missions by "grunts"--rifle-carrying men on the ground--was horrific and traumatic. Homecoming veterans were widely perceived as damaged in some way. 

Draftees were the unfortunate ones, who had failed the "channeling" test. People lost student deferments by being unable to afford tuition or by dropping or failing a class. Judges would offer men in legal trouble the opportunity to volunteer for the army in lieu of jail.

A divide emerged.  

Colleges became hotbeds of anti-war activity. People at colleges were aware of their relative privilege, but internalized it as their just reward; they were safe because they worked, studied, stayed in school. Deferment was an earned privilege. They were safe by merit.

Working class communities saw it differently. They saw privilege and a raw deal. It was a working-class war, fought by poor boys and people of color.  

Members of the white working class, in North and South both, were receptive to George Wallace's populist 1968 and 1972 campaign rhetoric that condemned students as privileged elitists. I was in the crowd of 20,000 on the Boston Common in October, 1968. The Harvard Crimson quotes his taunts: 

     "I bet this is the first speech like this you Harvard boys have every heard. You just wait till November. You make lots of noise now, and you've had more influence on national policy than the good people of Massachusetts have had, but the day is coming when they're going to have their say."

The Vietnam draft was an inflection point. The Democratic party became "channelled." The spoken message was "end the war, save the country," and end the war for everybody, but the body language was unmistakable. There wasn't solidarity and unity. Young men in college accepted their privilege and felt lucky. They protested the war from the outside. Save yourself, so you can save the world, sure, but stay out of it.

That same ethic and sensibility persists. This blog has noted that the Democratic solution to the problem of low working class incomes was to tell people to go to college and escape the working class.  

Bernie Sanders's progressive message is the opposite. Don't just escape and join the economic oppressors  You save the entire generation by making being a productive worker a good living. We are in this together, as working class people.

That is a fundamental divide in the Democratic Party, one that most pointedly divides the Party of Bernie Sanders from the Party of Pete Buttigieg, and it helps explain why Sanders's supporters are so adamant in opposing Buttigieg. Buttigieg represents--through the body language of biography--the Democratic party of escape into prosperity through merit. Play by the rules, become a Rhodes Scholar, and you, too will avoid the common misery. That isn't what Buttigieg says aloud, but it is what he represents. 

The Vietnam War is not over, not by a long shot.


                                               ---   ---   ---   ---   ---



Boomers lived this era, and may well remember it. For younger readers, it is history. But it is far from past. The wounds still fester.

Lisa Marie Bailey, Harvard Extension Masters Thesis:
An excellent, very readable history of Selective Service

NY Times Moral Case for Draft Resistance
A short history of the Vietnam draft











Friday, January 17, 2020

OK, boomer.

"You say you want a revolution, well, you know,

We all want to change the world.

Don't you know it's going to be all right. All right. All right."

     The Beatles, written in the summer of 1968
   
1969

These are the Boomer years. We got the music right, but Bernie Sanders says we screwed up the politics.


The Boomer Era in politics started with Bill Clinton's election in 1992 and it isn't over yet. The political parties are realigning under the Boomer's watch.

Democrats used to be the party of working people, a New Deal coalition of factory workers in the North with Solid South white segregationists. It represented the "little guy" or the "average American" against financial and cultural elites. Factory workers in Michigan voted Democratic; educated, sophisticated, prosperous people in the suburbs voted Republican.

A switch is underway. Now the factory worker and person who identifies as a "little guy" is more likely to vote Republican, or at least on the margin did so in 2016 to give Trump the electoral vote victory. Democrats stopped being a party that identified itself around incomes and job status--the "working class"--and became more identified around identity categories. It became the party that represented ascendent blacks, women, homosexuals, secular humanists, plus a base of white liberals who congregated in college towns and coastal cities. 

The "little guy," the white working class American, was open to the message of George Wallace in the late 1960's, to Pat Buchanan in the 1990's, and finally Trump currently, especially as Democrats focused attention on people who were attempting to join that group of "regular Americans" as opposed to people who were already in it. Right populist messages identified around issues of culture, in large part in opposition to the ascendent groups. Trump added an economic argument that free trader trickle-down Romney had made less well; Trump will bring back their jobs. 

Democrats had a different message; we will bring back social justice.

Trump won that argument and Democrats lost enough of the white working class to lose the 2016 election.

The Bernie Sanders progressive message is that Democrats lost their way by ignoring the economic interests of working people in America, as labor, as working class. He says that black, brown, and white people, women, men, straight, gay, and people of all faiths have a common interest in re-asserting democratic power to shift power and economic rewards back toward labor and away from capital, toward workers and away from top managers and stockholders. The top 1%, and especially the top tenth of 1% have glommed onto nearly all the productivity gains of the Boomer era. He says Democrats reconnect with working people by fighting for economic justice.

Democrats are sorting it out now in their primary. The great trend is toward a party re-alignment built around identity, but nothing works better to reverse such a trend than losing an election to someone like Trump. Vote your identity as workers, Sanders says.

Meanwhile, Trump and Fox and talk radio says the great unifiers for the "average American" are traditional cultural touchstones, and the resentment real Americans feel over the complaints of weirdos, interlopers, agitators, foreigners, and communists. Vote your identity as normal Americans, Trump says.

Boomers like David Brooks of the NY Times, and Jim Stodder, a college classmate and economist, have each tried to make sense of this. Here is David Brooks' take: Click: NY Times   

Jim Stodder teaches international economics and securities regulation at Boston University, with recent research on how carbon taxes and rebates can be both income equalizing and green. He was a college classmate, then received a Ph.D. from Yale in economics. His website: www.jimstodder.com




Guest Post, by Jim Stodder

Jim Stodder

I agree with NY Times Columnist David Brooks that our political impact, as distinguished from our social, has not been so great. I worry about the extent to which our boomer leftist politics fostered the right-populist reaction here and in Europe.  

Of course, some sort of reaction to the social upheaval of the 60s was inevitable, We shouldn't blame ourselves for its very existence.  But I think the degree to which our generation abandoned a class-based politics in favor of one that was cultural and identity-based helped lead to this reaction.  

This left the white working and lower-middle classes, but also many people of color in those classes, with the distinct impression that we didn't care anything about them. How else can we explain the wholesale abandonment by these groups of center-left parties in the West?  The  answer of "racism" is true, but is also too easy. Remember those 6 million Obama-to-Trump voters.

Part of the reason we abandoned "middle America," the culture most of us came from, is that our escape from bourgeois mores reflect a kind of cultural narcissism. We boomers have grown up with a spotlight on our every furrow of the brow, every curl of the lip.  Everywhere we looked we saw ourselves.  

This led to a sense, even among many who might be otherwise inclined, that we were too good for mere politics. We wanted to do bigger and higher things. I've long felt a grim recognition from Todd Gitlin's remark that while the Right was taking over State Legislatures in the '90s, the Left was busy taking over the English Departments.

So yes, I think Brooks' C grade on our Politics is fair.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Tinder swipe: Appearances and electability


     "Who in their right mind would use what candidates say to decide who to vote for? Come to that, who would choose a spouse in such a matter? Or love a child for rational reasons? There are many real things other than facts."

     Tony Farrell, brand strategist.
Audition



The Democratic Debate was only superficially about policy issues. It was really about identity, personal appeal, self confidence, character, and relatability. 

We are picking a person, not a policy package.


We paid attention to Bernie Sanders extending his hand and Elizabeth Warren not taking it, and we are deciding how we feel about that. It was a reflection of something for each of them. Character? Temperament?

Facebook comments
We are considering whether Amy Klobuchar strikes us as steady and sensible, or as boring. We observe Pete Buttigieg's manner. Is he ready? 

As a retired businessperson, I reflect that in the current Democratic Party, pulled left in policy and message by Sanders and populism, it is likely that nothing whatever Wall Street billionaire Tom Steyer could possibly say or do would make him an acceptable candidate to Democrats. He is trapped by his identity. 

Today's Guest Comments are from businessmen, former college classmates, and like me, retired with time to observe political presentation. Tony Farrell was a very successful brand strategist for The Nature Company, Sharper Image, the Gap, and handled the doomed-from-the-start Trump Steaks account. Stan Werlin was a business development executive in the environmental, engineering, and management consulting industry. 


Tony Ferrell comments:


Tony Farrell
"Personal appeal and basic skill at speaking and appearing genuine are practically infallible predictors of success in presidential elections. Look at 1932 and the first major impact of mass media (radio) in conveying FDR's profound charisma (and Hoover's icy charmlessness despite being the greatest humanitarian among all our presidents). And when I read popular accounts of Truman's victory over Dewey, the telling comments revolve around the 'little man on top of the wedding cake' criticism of the brilliant Dewey.

Trump is brilliant at conveying a charismatic affection for his base of virulent anti-PC'er, and he has great charm for those that buy in. (Even John Oliver called Trump 'objectively funny." With his roaring economy and relative peace, Trump should have approval ratings in the high 60's but he's never topped 45% because he's chosen the narrow, base-only route. But he is formidable nonetheless, and Democrats need to field a candidate with obvious charisma, charm, and personality in order to win."


Stan Werlin comments:


Stan Werlin says the key to that charismatic presence "is something I think voters are pretty good at sussing out--genuineness.

"Elements such as tone of voice, energy level, bearing, clothing, posture, confidence do matter enormously. I happen to think a natural smile is hugely important. So is speaking with a natural cadence. Being super serious all the time doesn't work.

Stan Werlin
Genuineness is perhaps even more important--or lack of genuineness a killer. Elizabeth Warren always seems staged and artificial to me. She is performing. Look at the mileage Kate McKinnon gets on SNL when she caricatures Warren.

Biden is much more down to earth and relatable. Gaffes often make him human and appealing, more like 'the common man.

Bernie is as genuine as it gets.

Mayor Pete seems pretty genuine to me as well. I think that when a candidate appears intellectuality's most often a put off to voters and a death knell. Warren suffers from that. Ditto Kamala Harris. Mayor Pete seems more in control of his intelligence as an asset, not a liability."

In the end it seems to me - no Ph.D. level political science here - that elections since 1960 have almost always come down on the side of positive personal appeal/charisma for the winner, with negative appeal/charisma a contributing factor for the loser in a couple of cases."




Wednesday, January 15, 2020

The Democratic Debate: Reflections after reading commentary


1. There is witnessing what one sees, in real time.


2. And then there is witnessing, after others tell us what they saw. It is socially constructed.


Today's post is Number Two. 


"Warren hit it out of the park!"


Last night, in real time, I described what I saw, a fast action of questions and brief answers. I had a strong impression of the competence of all the candidates and then one, big takeaway about the dustup between Sanders and Warren.  Click: Last Night's real time impressions

It was obvious to me that Bernie Sanders wanted the dispute to end. Of course a woman can win the presidency. No one would say the opposite, he said, and indeed cited his YouTube video evidence that he had said that years ago. Bigger message: Let's not fight.

Warren, as I saw it, rejected his olive branch. Women win elections, she said, and do so better than guys. You guys up here on the stage, you lose elections. Women beat Republican incumbents and you don't.

That was an accusation.

Bernie said that he, actually, had unseated a Republican incumbent to enter Congress. Warren's assertion that women unseated Republicans had inserted a time limit that seemed arbitrary, thirty years. Her time limit just excluded Sanders' win.

She was accurate, but misleading. The men-don't-unseat-Republicans position relied on it being 30 years, not 32.  

My take on this was negative. That was petty and dishonest, I thought.

The pundits saw it differently. CNN commentary overwhelmingly concluded Warren decisively won the exchange, that Warren looked like a winner and demolished the meme that women aren't electable. Gloria Borger said she hit it out of the park. 

CNN's words on the screen said "Elizabeth Warren fires back at Bernie Sanders." Fires back makes Warren a victim, defending herself, and Sanders the initial provoker. I had not seen it that way.

Click: NY Times columnist ratings.
Meanwhile, the Des Moines Register reports the audience response: 

"Her remarks were met with the most enthusiastic applause of the evening from the small audience at Drake University’s Sheslow Auditorium."

That was a real time response.

The New York Times this morning presented fourteen different pundit opinions on the race. The overwhelming consensus was that Warren looked great and made her case on the really important point to address: women's electability. Michelle Goldberg wrote: 'She had the most memorable line of the night: 'The only people on this stage who have won every single election they have been in are the women.'”

The Times quoted Will Wilkinson saying, "She made a fiery, galvanizing case on women’s electability that made Sanders seem less than honest."  That is the exact opposite of my take. I thought her the one that was less than honest.

Click: Washington Post
The Washington Post had its own story, titled "Winners And Losers from the Iowa Democratic Debate." 

Their conclusion: Warren was the winner, indeed crediting her for her "Sly Attack on Sanders."


View number two--the socially constructed one-- is the more important and durable way to witness the event. The event experience is its interpretation. Others saw her looking strong. Others saw her winning an exchange and appearing sly--i.e good and effective--not misleading and sneaky.  I am affected by that. I notice myself thinking that maybe she wasn't so bad. Maybe others are right. My view was changing.

Still, this morning, I like her less than I did yesterday. That is real, too.






Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Instant impressions, in real time



A look at the Democratic debate for the first hour



There are three perspectives on a presidential debate.

1. The instant, in the moment impression as the debate proceeds.
  
2.  What you think of the debate at the end of it.

3.   What you think the next day or two, after hearing the pundits tell you what happened and you hear all the analysis, and how the consensus consensus settles in.


This is #1, the quick real time look. 



6:02. Bernie immediately talks about his wisdom in opposing the Iraq war. He did not mention Biden.


6:03. Biden said Obama gave him the task of ending the war. It was a mistake to go in.


6:04  Bernie rehashed that he opposed war, Biden rehashed getting out.


6:05  Klobuchar. I respect Buttigieg, but I have different experience. Opposed the Iraq war, but let’s talk about right now.


6:07. Buttigieg says the war there has gone on a long time.


6:08 wolf B said polls think you aren’t prepared in foreign policy. She says she has travelled to war sites.


6:10. Wolf B says Steyer, you don’t have experience.  Who had judgement. An outside perspective is good, for example Obama being ready to vote no.


6:12.  Bernie. two foreign policy disasters, Vietnam and Iraq, were built on lies.


6:14 Biden:  leave a very few troops in Middle East


6:15 Klobuchar: leave a few troops in ME


6:16. Warren: get people out, come home.


6:18 Buttigieg: Trump is adding people!


6:18 Bernie: “the American people are sick and tired of endless wars!”


6:19 Biden: we cannot just walk away. We need a coalition and therefore need a small special force to leverage that.


6:20 Buttigieg. We need to revise the Authorization of force. If our troops have the courage to go to war, the Zcongress must have the courage to vote.


6:22 wolf B asks Warren if she would use force without authorization.  Answer “imminent threat”. “It’s time to bring our forces home.


6:23 Steyer: work in coalitions and have a plan. Trump has no plan.


6:24 Buttigieg: defended Iran nuclear deal, which even a Trump agreed was working. Criticall important to have alliances. Yes or no, should Iran be allowed to be a nuclear power? “No.”


6:26 asked ok Klobuchar, how would you stop Iran from being a nuclear power.  Answer: negotiate, and never let Iran be nuclear.  China is the big economic threat: Iran is big m8litary threat


6:28 asked of Biden, would you meet with North Korea without preconditions? No. Trump has let him get away with everything with Trump.  Bernie helped Biden with a joke, when Biden said Kim said to best Biden with a stick. Bernie quipped “other than that you liked him.”  God all around laugh


6:31 Bernie said no trade agreements without a plan to reduce fossil fuel use. We must get our act together on climate. Against NAFTA.  Oppose new reform, USMCA, is not good enough.


6:32. New trade deal is a modest improvement. Let’s take the improvement, then do more.


6:34 Klobuchar: a plant in Iowa  was shut down because of Trump’s trade war. Support USMCA.


6:35. Buttigieg also supports USMCA.


6:35 why are you, Biden, the best on trade. Trump says he will eat your lunch.


6:38. Bernie says that Biden an he disagree on trade.  If a corporation wants to shut down 8n America, use our contracting power so they get no new government contracts.


6:39 Warren said that our trade deals have been good for major corporations not Americans. It is corruption. 


6:41. Steyer: end tariffs on day one.  Our trade deals need to protect American workers and the climate.  The future will affect the climate of young people.


6:43 I did not cannot say a woman cannot be president.  Hillary won popular vote by three million votes. i support whoever gets 5he nom8nation.


6:46. Warren: women here can win elections. Men here have lost.  


6:47. Klobuchar:  I have won in red areas


6:49. Bernie: I defeated a Republican


6:49 Warren: really, when?  Diminishing Bernie.  Bernie said, yes. Warren questioned the date..


6:50. Break


Observation:  Bernie tried to be a unifier, no fight with Warren.  Warren kept pushing, a woman can win, women win better than men, refused a resolution that noted everyone could win. Kept the dispute alive calculating the time whether Bernie had defeated a Republican 28 yers prior or 30 years prior.  Bernie wanted agreement that anyone can win and he had.


Warren wanted to assert women won better than did men.   


My instant take was very negative for Warren. It was petty.