Friday, February 12, 2016

Rubio Robots and Bernie Bots

As I wrote in my last piece, I think she did what she needed to do which is to show Bernie's laser focus on money in politics and single issue and one dimensional.

As noted by a number of folks, he came across as a bit of a robot himself last night.

"And yet there's a vague hint of Rubio-ism in Sanders. When pressed on specifics he comes back to this very general if powerful critique about a rigged economy, a corrupt campaign finance system that undergirds that rigged economy and so forth. He keeps coming back to those same talking points. Now, he's no Rubio of course. Rubes really is a callow pretty boy who's had a series of elegantly crafted paragraphs produced for him to fit a certain political moment. What Sanders is saying is what he's been saying for decades. It is rooted in a lifetime of a very specific way about thinking about the political economy, economic policy and the nature of equality itself. In a way the country or rather a decent chunk of it has simply caught up with him."

"But different kinds of people, perhaps the same people at different moments, are going to resonate with one or the other of these approaches. And much of this campaign is going to come down to which group is bigger. In a very basic sense the two of them were simply talking past each other."

"I think one meta strategy that Hillary brought into this debate was hitting specifics precisely to push Sanders back on to his same recitation."

Politico noticed that as well:

"Ask Bernie Sanders about anything – ISIS, the Trump Phenomenon, four hundred years of slavery and the oppression of blacks -- and he’ll make it all about those evil Clinton-enabled Wall Street SOBs. Marco Rubio has got nothing on Sanders, who possesses the singular gift of making something he’s repeated ten thousand times sound like it sprung from his deepest feelings at the moment."

"That’s not to say core Democratic voters, especially young ones, aren’t moved by his call to end economic inequality. But at times, it seems that Sanders – in an effort to buttress his belief that America’s woes stem from the monied elite -- shoehorns everything into his unified field theory of American politics, even a socio-politico-economic phenomenon as the troubling, persistent phenomenon of generational black poverty."

"And here Sanders’ relentlessness allowed Clinton to score significant points with African-American voters in the critical South Carolina primary. When the moderators from PBS asked both candidates how they would approve race relations, Clinton offered a nuanced answer focused on the “systemic racism” in American history and a vow to carry on President Obama’s legacy. Guess what Sanders talked about? “What has to be appreciated is that, as a result of the disastrous and illegal behavior on Wall Street, millions of lives were hurt,” he said with deep passion, and glint of the mechanical. “People lost their jobs, their homes, their life savings. Turns out that the African-American community and the Latino community were hit especially hard. As I understand it, the African-American community lost half of their wealth as a result of the Wall Street collapse.”

Read more:

She also finished strongly by pivoting to Flint in her closing statement. At the end of the day, Bernie thinks that racism-he says even less about  sexism-goes away if you get money out of politics. This is the weakness within his strength. 

She has been trying to highlight it in succeeding debates. Last night she made it stick. 

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