Politics: Trump, Democrats, the race

Why do Democrats lose so much?

Following a primary election makes me batty. It seems as if Democrats are in some white paper contest, in which the nominee, and eventually, the President, will be picked by either a search committee or some panel of trained judges/referees.

It does not work that way:

Policy wonks and Washington pundits like to describe the Democratic primary as an ideological tug-of-war: moderates versus progressives, centrists versus an insurgent Left, pragmatic policy tweaks versus sweeping proposals. But politics are more visceral than that. Voters are humans who make decisions based on gut and mood, not white papers. They may harbor preferences about one candidate’s proposed tax policy over another’s, but they’ll end up voting for the person that best reflects their vision for the future of America. Do they want to heal the country after Trump’s divisive term? Or do they want to burn the whole rigged system to the ground? Which is more important, hope or change?

And here’s the twist: those emotional preferences don’t always break down on predictable ideological lines. Just look at the 12% of Sanders 2016 voters who picked Trump in the 2016 general election. Or the 6.7 million who voted for Obama in 2012 and then for Trump four years later. Those decisions helped decide that election—and they were gut decisions, not policy calculations.

Someone commented that “Democrats study things like science, history, economics, etc. whereas Republicans study marketing…and just who wins the elections?”

And I think that is the crux of it.

Example: check out this Krugman thread:

Yes, Krugman is a public intellectual and not a politician. But too many politicians act this way.

France: that is the type of place where if your dad owned the town bakery, you will run it when you grow up. But the “American dream” is to MAKE IT BIG..to move beyond. So things like “hey, we’ll raise the minimum wage and expand the safety net” is uninspiring; it sends an emotional message of “you’ll probably need it.” That isn’t what people want to hear, even though, let’s face it, you have a much, much, much greater chance of ending up needing public aid than of earning even 200K a year.

Democrats seem to campaign by *attacking success* rather than by celebrating it. That is bad marketing.

Yes, there is an information problem as the rank and file Republican probably has NOT come to grips with just how corrupt Trump is. BUT: you aren’t going to convince your Republican friend of that; they will dismiss stuff from CNN, Vox, and the New York Times they way you dismiss NewsMax.

For example, your Republican friends probably aren’t aware of the extent that the R’s in Congress are spinning..to the point of dishonesty, the facts of the impeachment case. Nevertheless, impeachment sure appears to be some sort of partisan political power move, which really..isn’t convincing enough people.

Personally, my feeling is that the R’s probably see Trump as acting more or less in line with how all Presidents act, but without the polish. I’d like to take him out at the ballot box.

And that leads to our primary. Many competing candidates are annoyed at the attention that Pete Buttigieg is getting. Yes, he has NOT paid his dues, so to speak; I don’t find him qualified, as opposed to, say, Elizabeth Warren. BUT he does have two things she doesn’t have: political skill and public charisma, and yes, I see a national election as a big exercise in marketing.

My list is: Klobuchar, Booker, Biden …then a tie between Warren and Buttigieg. I am a hard pass to the “bored billionaires” and to Bernie Sanders. Ok, I’ll vote for the nominee…but I’d rather not vote for them..though I’ll do it.

Digression: this is one of many examples why I temper my outrage reaction when I first read about an alleged “hate incident.”

Some Bradley Basketball and walking

Ok, it is the end of the semester rush; I should do ok if only I organize myself well. It will be a challenge to do that; lots of midnight oil over the next two weeks.

I did see some basketball though.

On Thursday, the Bradley women held off North Dakota State 70-64. Though NDSU did not have great record coming in, they have played better recently. And, only 4 Braves scored at all (one lady got 30..so that helped).

On Friday: Bradley opened up a 32-28 half time lead and went on to cruise 83-52; the victim was an out-manned North Carolina A&T team.

Last night: Tracy came over to watch Ohio State beat Wisconsin to move to the football “final four”. Note: Illinois State football moved to the “elite eight” but now has a rough assignment vs. North Dakota State, up there.

Workout notes:
Saturday: run..jog to Bradley Park, run up the hills hard, walk briefly, then jog down. 1:04 for the 5 mile. Today: 10 mile walk at an easy pace (2:52 for just over 10: to the Riverfront, goose loop, dam, etc. Not much of an effort, but ..well, 10 miles is now challenging. I have not gone “double digits” since October 13 (walk/jog half marathon); it is amazing at how quickly I lose distance conditioning. And I am feeling the leg weights/dead lifts.