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Member since: Sat Dec 6, 2003, 04:15 AM
Number of posts: 57,936

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Right off, I see problems.

She wants to shift the cost of social programs like leave for new mothers onto employers. That will be hard to get through Congress.

Then she favors "free" trade, which thus far is one of the main reasons for the decline of the middle class.

She supports free trade agreements, which she's said is more important than defense in establishing global leadership.

. . . .

Clinton was Secretary of State from 2009-2013. . . . . She drafted the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and pried open Chinese markets to U.S. companies

. . . .

Create the American Retirement Account to allow tax-deferred contributions of up to $5,000 per year. The first $1000 contributed into any retirement account will be eligible for dollar-to-dollar tax credits. (Source: HillaryClinton.com, Issues)



In addition, the retirement savings account will just result in more retirement money being gobbled up by the fraud, greed and sharp money "managers" on Wall Street. We need to raise the cap on contributions to Social Security and strengthen that system.

Maybe Hillary wants to be managing the private investments in her Wall Street accounts when she is in her late 80s and 90s, but I don't. I want strong Social Security.

It looks like she also will raise taxes or impose financial costs on the members of the middle class who own small businesses and also on larger corporations to pay for her social programs.

Programs like family leave for new mothers, free tuition for college education (Hillary limits it to free community college education) and pre-school education have to be paid for.

Hillary is being, again, dishonest about the fact that the burden for these programs will fall on the middle class under her proposals. She says she won't raise taxes on the middle class, but the middle class will still pay for her proposals because she is not adequately raising taxes on the very, very rich. She can't. They are funding her campaign.

Sanders is being honest with us. He is telling us what programs he wants to provide and how he will pay for them.

Let's put Hillary on notice that she needs to do that too.

And it is interesting how Hillary has lied about her role in the negotiations of the TPP. When convenient, she says the agreement does not meet her standards.

But from this article, we now know that she negotiated it. She has taken credit for the TPPP.

Hillary. Who in the world is falling for those vague statements.

If other countries like Hungary and Austria (used to have this kind of leave)

can afford to pay for it, certainly we can.

We already pay for it in lost income for mothers who do stay home and costs of infant care for mothers who work.

The minimum wage is $7.25 going up to $15 in Los Angeles in a few years.

The cost of a full time baby-sitter for one week for one baby at $8 per hour is going to be at least $320 per week. That for 12 weeks would be $3,840.

The mother would probably be paid not her full salary but a stipend that was standard. Employers could also be required to pay the cost of the leave. There are two possibilities right there, probably more.

Perhaps the amount paid to the mother during her leave would be reduced to a standard rate that Congress would agree upon.

My guesses based on my experience living in countries in which this leave is routine. I did not, by the way, live in Hungary. But I know they at least used to have it. So do countries like Sweden, and most of the countries that are democracies.

More on this issue:

When Australia passed a parental leave law in 2010, it left the U.S. as the only industrialized nation not to mandate paid leave for mothers of newborns. Most of the rest of the world has paid maternity leave policies, too; Lesotho, Swaziland and Papua New Guinea are the only other countries that do not. Many countries give new fathers paid time off as well or allow parents to share paid leave.

. . . .

The U.S. joins Lesotho, Swaziland and Papua New Guinea as the only countries that do not mandate paid maternity leave. Most countries insure at least three months of paid leave for new mothers, and many give fathers benefits too.


There is a chart at that website. In Brazil (a poorer country than the US), new mothers get 100% of their pay for 120 days of leave.

In China, new moms get 90 days at 100% of pay.

Nasty, mean old Russia gives 140 days at 100% of pay.

Even Saudi Arabia gives 50% of your pay for this kind of leave.

It's a disgrace that we do not have this leave. The cost is bound to be something we can afford.

Good Heavens. How penny wise and pound foolish can we be.

The relationship between mother and baby that is established in the first days and weeks of life after birth is utterly essential. It's value in human terms cannot be measured in money.

The baby has lived for about 9 months within the body of the mother. It knows the mothers smell, the gait of her walk, her voice. And then suddenly it is torn into a world that is new. New mothers should have time with their babies so that the babies can cross over into our world from the protected haven of the womb. This precious, irreplaceable time is probably even more important to adoptive mothers than to natural birth mothers.

I just can't believe that we in the supposedly richest country in the world do not already provide this leave to new parents.

I am appalled at the materialistic values in our country.

I'm all for civility, but the stakes are too high in this primary season to cause me to value

being polite over getting the right Democratic candidate.

You pointed your finger to the crucial issue in this primary season when you wrote:

Can't someone look at Hillary Clinton and see someone with a lifelong dedication to helping children, women, and the middle class? Someone who is obviously very smart and tough? Is John Lewis suffering from Stockholm Syndrome? Is Howard Dean corrupt? Is Wendy Davis not thoughtful?

Can't someone look at Bernie Sanders and see a highly principled public servant who is focused on reversing the great inequalities in our society? Someone who is untouched by the dirty money that sloshes around our political system? Someone who is drawing huge crowds and who has made true-blue liberalism mainstream again?

This election is about the corruption in our government.

Bernie Sanders is the first candidate in my lifetime to strongly and positively oppose corruption. Not only is he opposing the corruption that our campaign finance customs and laws encourage, but he is living his opposition by refusing contributions over $2700 per person and campaigning without the backup of one or more superpacs.

Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, although strong on certain issues like women and children (Bernie is just as strong on those issues and stronger on the race and prison and many other issues) is mired in the corruption right up to her neck. She is taking the money from the wealthy, the Wall Street billionaires, anyone who will cough it up.

Bernie is, in my opinion, our last chance to maybe get clean government at least for a few years.

I want a Bernie appointee heading the Department of Justice. I want a Bernie appointee heading the Commerce Department, the Agriculture Department, the Labor Department, the Treasury and every other department in the government.

The TPP would not exist; it would not be a question to argue about in this election, were it not for the extreme corruption throughout our government.

We would not have gone to war in Iraq and would not be concerned about war in Syria were it not for the corruption in our government.

We would be dealing with climate change in a rational way and would have reduced our carbon emissions to far less than they are now had it not been for the extreme amount of corruption in our government -- and especially the influence of the oil and gas and coal industries.

I know it is troubling for nice people to come to a website like DU and find so many nasty posts, so much argument, so much turmoil.

But, I am a 72-year-old woman, and I tell you, the stakes have never in my life or the lives of my parents and grandparents been this high.

The industrial revolution, the advent of the automobile and all the wonderful inventions we enjoy -- hey, the internet and cell phones and medical advances, and on and on, have given us great lives, great opportunities but the energy we burn when we use those amenities are killing our planet.

And it is the corruption in our government that prevents us from dealing with the slow destruction of our planet that is happening as we type.

Corruption. That is the issue in this election.

You pointed to it yourself.

Hillary represents business as usual. Her huge financial backing, her big donors, they represent the polluters of the world, those who view the future of our planet as not their problem. There is no way that a candidate can amass the sums that Hillary has pulled together without taking from the polluters and the destroyers of our earth.

Corruption -- that is what I am voting against this primary season, and that is why I am voting for Bernie Sanders.

We each have to make up our own minds.

I have made my decision.

Not nearly enough to justify yet another give-away trade deal that helps corporations and hurts

the American people.

Your chart says it all.

BILL CLINTON signed NAFTA in 1994.


BILL CLINTON also extended favored nation status to China in 1994.

Friday, May 27, 1994

Clinton Grants China MFN, Reversing Campaign Pledge
By Ann Devroy
The Washington Post


It was followed by the dot-com boom.

And then, three years after the signing of NAFTA and in spite of the dot.com boom, our manufacturing sector steadily declined.

Other important dates.

We joined GATT in 1948. All went well until the oil crises of the 1970s.

We joined the WTO in 1995,


For those who are interested, here is a list of the countries with which we have trade agreements:

The United States has free trade agreements in force with 20 countries. These are:

Costa Rica
Dominican Republic
El Salvador


More information on our free trade agreements:


1985 -- free trade agreement with Israel including Palestine.


We do not need another "free" trade agreement.

As your chart shows, there is a direct relationship between the decline in our industrial sector and the growth in the number of our trade agreements.

And with each trade agreement, we hide our consumption of dirty fuels and our contribution to the death of our planet.

No thanks to these dirty trade deals.

We can trade without "free" trade agreements. These agreements take the control over our trade out of the hands of the American people and into the hands of large multinational corporations. There is nothing "free" about them for the American people.

We do not want or need more trade agreements.

More facts about this: (from a report published in 2005)

Actually, Mrs. Clinton has a mixed record on the bankruptcy bill, which wended its way through Congress over the course of several years, and on fighting the banks, which are a major constituency and major source of campaign contributions in New York.

The bankruptcy legislation was sought by banks and credit card companies, which wanted to make it harder for consumers to use the bankruptcy laws to walk away from their debts.

As first lady, Mrs. Clinton worked against the bill. She helped kill one version of it, then another version passed, which her husband vetoed. As a senator, in 2001, she voted for it, but it did not pass. When it came up again in 2005, she missed the vote because her husband was in the hospital, although she indicated she would have opposed it.

. . . .

The bill popped up again 2001, which was Mrs. Clinton’s first year in the Senate. She worked with Republicans on it and was one of 36 Democrats who helped it pass the Senate, saying it had been improved from when she opposed it. Still, this version was vigorously opposed by consumer groups and unions, and ultimately did not become law.



The 2005 bankruptcy bill hurt students and former students with student debt really badly because it excludes a broad range of education or student loan debt from eligibility for discharge, that is forgiveness by a bankruptcy court.

This means that a business executive, let's take Trump as an example, can take his corporations into bankruptcy court and either hold the threat of a discharge or forgiveness of the money he owes his lenders, his creditors over their heads until they forgive some of it but a 24-year-old who owes $40,000 in student loans and for some reason cannot pay them cannot get that debt forgiven by the bankruptcy court in most cases. It's much harder for the student to get an education-related loan forgiven by the court than some spendthrift, irresponsible corporation.

To me, that is a perversion of justice.

Students should be able to go to school for free.

Some suggest that students who get the forgiveness of college or post-secondary education debt should have to volunteer or work to pay back the debt. That reminds me very much of the old indentured servitude system when immigrants to America in the early days of our country were indentured servants for a period of time, even years in situations like a sort of slavery that had a predictable end (not meaning to make of slavery less of a wrong, less of a crime, but to indicate the kind of relationship that the indentured servant potentially had with the master for the duration of the servitude. So I think that is not the answer.

To me, the answer is to tax everyone to support state schools and to lower or provide free tuition for state schools.

Bernie is on the right track with regard to student loans in my view.

Forrgive me for paraphrasing your statement in post #15.

"It's easy to have a record like Sanders" if you have a brilliant mind and can enjoy the luxury of thinking independently BECAUSE YOU DON'T ACCEPT HUGE DONATIONS FROM BILLIONAIRE DONORS.

It's also easy to have a record like Sanders if your lifestyle is not lavish and is close to that of the average person and therefore you don't have to make $200,000 speeches to the very banksters that are pinching pennies out of the pension funds of the people you claim you want to represent.

Bernie is simply the smartest guy in the room.

No matter the label he carries or that the media attaches to him.

See this:


That links you to an article discussing Bernie's uncanny ability to foresee disasters before they occur.

The must-read article on his track record of prescience:


Bernie warning about entering into the Iraq War.


Proven right.

Bernie warning about the gambling on Wall Street and the crisis it would and did lead to:


Note that this c-span video is dated 1998!

A couple of times in a century, we get the opportunity to elect a true leader, one who has the judgment and wisdom to excite us with new vision and guide us with wise caution. Bernie is that opportunity.

When Abraham Lincoln was elected president, the country was divided. As I understand it, although he did not favor slavery, he never intended to force slave states to abolish it. The argument was about the ability of slaveholders to pursue and capture slaves in the North. That is my understanding.

But the remarkable thing about Lincoln was that he had the moral courage and the intuition and the foresight to see that protecting the Union was our foremost priority and that slavery as an institution was too great a danger to our Union and to the rights of man and of the slaves to tolerate.

He was a leader, a wise man, a courageous man.

But to much of the country, his ideas were horrifying. To be an abolitionist was in the South akin to being a Communist in the US.

Bernie is not a Communist. He is a Democratic Socialist. There is a huge difference. Western Europe even when conservatives are in charge as in Germany, still provide free college tuition and single-payer healthcare to their people. They do not entangle their military in crazy adventures without thinking about how they will govern the countries after they have ventured into them.

Sanders is that kind of cautious Democratic Socialist. A lot of Americans will like his ideas.

He is 73 years old, an age at which even Jeb Bush thinks he is entitled to retire and enjoy his life. But he is willing to go on and serve his country and the American people. He has great wisdom, years of experience and a powerful bunch of courage and energy, and I sure do hope for the sake of our country, that we elect him in 2016.

He is the first and only presidential candidate who has inspired me to this degree in my life, and I myself am 72. I have never seen a candidate of the quality of Bernie Sanders.

We will be so lucky if we can elect him.

He is fiscally somewhat conservative in my view. He has served on the Budget Committee. He may be the ranking member. He said in his speech to the DLC that one of his first goals will be to order an audit of the military.

If you have ever talked with someone who handled military contracts or did military work, you will understand why that is a good idea. The process encourages spendthrift use of tax money. It is very likely that we can have the same or a better defense than we now have for less money. Bernie is not a spendthrift foolish person.

I think that electing him is the chance of the century for America.

In 1998 Bernie Sanders predicted the economic collapse that the gambling on Wall Street

would lead to.

America did not listen then. Will we listen now?


Rarely, maybe once or twice in a century, does our country have the opportunity to elect a man with Bernie's intellect, judgment and foresight. He asks the right questions. He has proved that over and over.

Will we miss this opportunity?

I hope not.


Thanks to peacebird who posted this on DU here:


Feel the Bern!

Wrong. Brown v. Board of Education and the Supreme Court decisions

that supported the rights of people of color were decided by courts of 9 justices, 8 white and one lone Black.

Those white justices were relatively liberal and were appointed by relatively liberal presidents including the Republican, Dwight Eisenhower. It was Eisenhower, a white president and not ultra-liberal president, who enforced Brown v. Board of Education in Little Rock.


True, Black people, supported by white activists, demonstrated non-violently but persistently for civil rights under the direction of Martin Luther King, supported by a lot of liberals including Robert F. Kennedy, Hubert Humphrey and Lyndon B. Johnson. But their movement would have failed had it not been for the fact that we had a liberal majority in Congress that was elected thanks to the liberal ECONOMIC POLICIES of FDR and subsequent presidents prior to passage of the Civil Rights Act.

The Civil Rights Act was passed by a majority including many white members of Congress with no support to speak of from white Southerners. It took a president who was liberal on both social and economic issues, Lyndon B. Johnson, to sign the Civil Rights Act.


All of these decisions and laws were decided or passed by relatively safe Democratic majorities in the Supreme Court and Congress that were won in a nation that had a strong industrial base, strong unions and an liberal economic policiies.

The tide against liberal majorities in Congress and the Supreme Court date back to the signing of the Civil Rights Act and the Viet Nam War. Following the signing of the Civil Rights Act in 1964, Goldwater won five states in the South in the presidential election.

n 1968, Nixon ran on the Southern Strategy,, which was opposed to Black equality at the most elementary level. He won the South, and the South which had prior to the Civil Rights Act voted Democratic thanks in great part to FDR's economic policies.

Since the 1968 election of Nixon, we have elected only three Democratic presidents, two of whom were from the South. The third was a Black president. Thanks to our failure to elect sufficient numbers of liberal Democrats, regardless of race, to Congress, we are unable to pass legislation either on important economic issues, voting rights or justice for Black people on the streets, in their contact with the police and in general. Really vital law enforcement reform as well as the passage of environmental legislation, the repeal of damaging trade agreements and the passage of trade agreements that support the rights of humans and not corporations, as well as domestic economic reform will only be possible when we have both a very liberal president AND VERY A VERY LIBERAL MAJORITY IN CONGRESS AND ON THE SUPREME COURT.

So, no, we don't get to vote for just whomever we want to vote for if we want to change our country. Certainly, Obama's administration is proof of that. I like Obama very much, but he has not been able to make the changes he probably wants to make because he has not had the support of a liberal Congress. To get a liberal Congress, voters have to think strategically. You have to choose candidates who are very liberal but who know how to appeal to a very broad base of voters and to attract new voters to the polls. Describes Bernie Sanders to a tee.

. . . .

It was FDR's economic policies that improved the lives of white and Black Americans, white Americans more than Black Americans, but ultimately, all Americans that made it possible to have a majority in Congress that would pass the Civil Rights Act, and other legislation that was necessary to improve the lives of Black people.

Today, minorities are potentially a larger portion of the electorate in the past, but in spite of the urgency and importance of Black issues including Black Lives Matter, judging from the past, especially our losses in 2014, we Democrats cannot expect to elect a majority in the Congress unless we all work together.

To gain votes and to get out the votes of all Democrats in the US we have to focus on both equality and justice issues and above all environmental issues, because there will be very little for any of us to argue about if we continue to destroy our environment at the current rate: economic equality and justice, racial equality and justice, gender equality and justice, environmental equality and justice. All of these issues.

We will not succeed in one area without succeeding in all of them.

We cannot win elections if we focus only or overwhelmingly on racial and gender issues and do not focus also on economic and environmental issues. The majority, thus far, is just not there if we narrow our focus.

It is not a choice between these issues. We have to choose all of them.

If Black people want to continue the current situation in which the federal government does not have the legal authority to do much about the police brutality at the local level, they cannot make the mistake that the union members made in 1980. They need to support the truest, strongest progressives in the country. In the presidential elections, that means voting for Bernie Sanders.

If Black people or union members vote for right-wing or our middle-of-the-road, slow-to-move-toward justice candidate, Hillary Clinton, we will lose in the general election.

It's our failure to emphasize and explain the need for economic justice that ended the Democratic majority in Congress. We need to return to emphasis on economic issues if we are to have a strategy that will elect enough truly liberal Democrats to Congress to make progress on environmental and most of all on racial issues.

We are nearing a time when people of color will have a majority. I think we may already be there in California. That's great. But we aren't there in many states including mid-western states. The political reality is that we need liberal members of Congress from many states including Southern states. We can't wait until people of color are in the majority in enough states to elect a strongly Democratic Congress.

BLM is absolutely right on their issues, but from what I can tell, they are wrong on electoral strategy. They have to work with white liberals to get what they want. Politics is a matter of mutual support,, of coalitions. I know that Black DUers don't like to hear this, but we have to work together, and we need to support liberal Democrats who will go further on justice issues, racial, economic and especially environmental than the Carter, the Clintons and Obama have gone.

That's the reality. It may not be fair, but it is the reality. Think about it.

Until we get a strong, strong liberal majority in Congress, the racial injustice in police departments and neighborhoods is in the control of local authorities. The president can't do much about it.

So the strategy to achieve racial justice and to stop the killings of Black people by law enforcement has to be to elect a strongly liberal, a truly liberal majority to Congress as well as a truly liberal president.

Black Lives Matter. Yes. Really. Black Lives Matter. The numbers. The facts.

Many African Americans, and Hispanics in San Diego, are afraid every time they see police officers. This is not exaggeration. When children go to school parents fear they will not come home. When young men, of a certain age, go get a burrito to the corner store in their Sunday best, they are stopped and profiled, at times cuffed. Those are some of the stories we have heard in the streets.

. . . .

An African American man expects to go to jail not college. It is a rite of passage. It usually is for mistakes that while men make and never see a police officer, let alone a judge.

These are the statistics according to the NAACP:

Incarceration Trends in America

From 1980 to 2008, the number of people incarcerated in America quadrupled-from roughly 500,000 to 2.3 million people
Today, the US is 5% of the World population and has 25% of world prisoners.
Combining the number of people in prison and jail with those under parole or probation supervision, 1 in ever y 31 adults, or 3.2 percent of the population is under some form of correctional control

Racial Disparities in Incarceration

African Americans now constitute nearly 1 million of the total 2.3 million incarcerated population
African Americans are incarcerated at nearly six times the rate of whites
Together, African American and Hispanics comprised 58% of all prisoners in 2008, even though African Americans and Hispanics make up approximately one quarter of the US population
According to Unlocking America, if African American and Hispanics were incarcerated at the same rates of whites, today’s prison and jail populations would decline by approximately 50%
One in six black men had been incarcerated as of 2001. If current trends continue, one in three black males born today can expect to spend time in prison during his lifetime
1 in 100 African American women are in prison
Nationwide, African-Americans represent 26% of juvenile arrests, 44% of youth who are detained, 46% of the youth who are judicially waived to criminal court, and 58% of the youth admitted t

More, much more and well worth reading and bookmarking.

Netroots Nation 2015, Sanders and O’Malley: 911 What is your Emergency?


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