Mark Rauterkus Mark@Rauterkus.com
412 298 3432 = cell
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Mental health support for college students, teachers' views on social and emotional learning, and more.
For all the whining and complaining of the Democrats about Russian interference in the 2016 election there is no evidence to support their claim that this led to the election of Donald Trump. In fact, just the opposite is the case. It was the abject failure of the Democratic Party itself to put forward a viable candidate who could articulate a message that would appeal to those outside of the solid blue cities and suburban PMC enclaves, or even campaign in those other areas, that actually doomed Hillary in 2016. Just as importantly, and perhaps more importantly, it was the multi-year failure of the Democrats when in power to propose and enact policies which benefitted those folks the Party just assumed had no other alternative to voting for Democrats – Blacks, Hispanics, working class union members, etc. As a result many of these same people simply stayed home on election day and did not vote since they saw no benefit from either party; while many others turned out to vote for Trump because he actually did ask for their votes and promised to address their needs.
Unfortunately this is a lesson the Democratic Party to this day has failed to understand and learn from. They are still tied to the coat-strings of their corporate Wall Street and Big Tech donors offering virtually nothing in the way of policy changes from the Clinton-Obama years of neoliberal fealty to "free market" pro-Wall Street policies. Furthermore, the indications from the Biden team of those likely to be considered for appointments to critical positions of importance in a Biden administration strongly suggest that it will be a redux of the same Obama team that led to the malaise that resulted in Hillary's defeat. Virtually every poll taken of the American people over the past four years indicated that by significant majorities people supported the progressive policy proposals made by Bernie Sanders. Yet the Democratic Party, submitting meekly to the demands of it donor base, has simply ignored and totally blocked any attempt by progressives to make any of these policies a part of the Democratic platform or even a part of the discussion. It should now be clear to everyone that this is now a total plutocracy controlled by oligarchs who run the apparatus of both political parties. The Trump presidency was (and is to a certain extent) an outlier in that the Republican establishment despised him, but totally rallied around him in order to gain control over is actual policies – which they effectively did.
Thus a Biden win in November, while it will represent at least some relief from the Trump years, should not provide any of us with great comfort that there will be any dramatic improvements in the operation of government in areas that benefit the great majority of Americans. We are likely to see the implementation of more trade treaties which tend to benefit only huge corporation and the already uber rich. Biden's chief advisor, Ted Kaufman, has already said that we should not expect any significant new programs because the cupboard is bare as the Republicans have spent all the money already (a total myth). Probably the best we can hope for is that Biden will attempt to undo the damage Trump has done to administrative agencies by replacing those folks who simply were appointed to destroy the operation of the agencies they were appointed to manage. The truth is that Biden is not likely to win because he is a wonderful candidate, he certainly is not; it is because Trump is so awful and because Trump has run a disastrously bad reelection campaign as he totally ignored the issues which allowed him to gain popularity in 2016. A Biden victory in 2020 should provide Democrats with no solace whatsoever.
"Neo-liberalism simply reproduces itself by resorting to magic theories of 'spillover'
or 'trickle' as the only solution to societal problems. There is little appreciation of the
fact that the alleged 'spillover' does not resolve the inequality that gives rise to new
forms of violence threatening the fabric of society."