The problem with those who refuse to assimilate

The main problem in America today are those who refuse to assimilate into society — who insist on keeping their own culture and not becoming part of what makes America great.

These people just don’t understand that America has a specific culture, and when you’re here, you should accept that.

These white straight Christians refuse to acknowledge that we represent the best the world has to offer. That our diversity is our strength, and we were built by immigrants, including some who did not come here voluntarily.  They go on national television and complain that America isn’t great any more, which is their way of saying “white male straight Christians don’t get to do whatever we want any more.” They don’t understand the greatness that is America — that we welcome everyone and everyone can become an American.  And then their words encourage crazy people to go out on killing rampages.

Until these people learn to assimilate into American society, we’ll never achieve the American dream.


Why conservatives call Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez “stupid”

It’s a popular meme on the right — calling AOC “stupid” and making fun of her for that. Seriously, do a search and you’ll find a bunch.

Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez won a science fair in high school of the kind that usually gets won by people who go on to win Nobel prizes. The competition is the largest pre-college scientific research event in the world.


Then she went to Boston University where she graduated cum laude with degrees in economics and international relations.

So how can they call her “stupid”?

Well, first, let’s remember that facts are meaningless to these people. These are the same people who deny evolution, claim climate change isn’t real, argue that trickle-down economics works, and think Trump is completely innocent. They deny reality all the time when it contradicts their already-held world view.

But mostly, they say that about anyone who believes in democratic socialism. They point to Venezuela (ignoring the fact that Venezuela’s problems are not because of socialism but because of corruption and a near-dictatorship) while they ignore basically every other advanced civilized democratic country in the world that has socialism (most of Europe, Australia, Canada, Japan, etc.).

In other words, they are seriously arguing that a person who graduated with honors in economics and international relations — the two things that would undoubtedly qualify anyone as an expert in democratic socialism — is “stupid.”

Which is about as stupid as they can be.

Taking the country back from the bullies

“When they go low, we go high,” Michelle Obama said.

Well, that didn’t work.

Liberals and progressives are now mad and are refusing to “take the high road” and look the other way. We’re fighting back.  And it’s about time.

Bullies will continue to bully you unless you fight back. You have to be willing to be just as aggressive as they are.

captain america

We’re not used to thinking like that. We liberals tend to want to work with others, and try to understand others. It’s due to the empathy we have that most conservatives are missing.

And that’s how conservatives have won over the years — by pushing their way in, by bullying, by demeaning anyone they disagree with, and by cheating (through gerrymandering, blocking legislation and appointments, and — let’s face it — by breaking the law). I am not advocating that we do these things at all. I am saying we have to stop allowing them to get away with it.

And we’re moving in that direction. We’re fighting back. We’re punching nazis. We’re staging counter protests. Recently, the alt-right’s rally in Washington DC turned out to have only about two dozen participants, facing off against hundreds of counter-protesters. The organizers of the march said some of their members did not attend because they didn’t want the confrontation, because, like all bullies, they can dish it out but they can’t take it.

Being nice only allows those who are not nice to take advantage of us. It’s how con men operate and it’s how the bad guys win. Wars are not won by “going high when they go low.”

Get angry. Fight back.



We are the moderates

Sean Hannity recently screamed about the dreaded socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s radical left-wing platform, posting it verbatim on Fox News in order to scare his viewers (average age: 68).


All those policy positions that Hannity pointed out as being outrageous socialist left-wing extremism? Yeah, they’re pretty much all supported by the majority of Americans.

For instance:

Medicare for All has the support of 63 percent of registered voters.

Tuition-free public college has 63 percent support.

A majority of Americans support Obamacare.  (This is especially true if you call it “the Affordable Care Act.”)

A majority thinks gay marriage,  abortion and marijuana should be legal.

A majority supports more gun control.

A majority wants to raise taxes on the wealthy and do not believe that “corporations are people.”

A majority want to raise the minimum wage and do something about campaign finance reform.   (And a majority support amending the Constitution to overturn the Citizen’s United case).

And let’s not forget that in 6 of the last 7 Presidential elections, the Democrat received more votes than the Republican.

We’re the moderates. We’re mainstream.  We’re the majority.

The right has done such a good job of demonizing liberalism and moving the window to the right that we seem to be extremists only by comparison to their far-right agenda. In most of the rest of the civilized world, our positions are even supported by the “conservatives” in those countries, because they’re mainstream views.

We need to stop acting like we’re asking for outrageous things.

The lesson Democrats can learn from Republicans

The extreme right wing of the Republican party demands purity. If you’re not radically conservative, you’re as bad as a Democrat. They’ve scared the GOP so much that reasonable members of the party are afraid to stand up to them. If it wasn’t for the Electoral College, gerrymandering and voter suppression, they would have destroyed the party by now. If nothing else, they’ve reduced the reputation of the GOP to the point where it’s at the lowest it has ever been.

And in many cases, they’ve lost because of it. Just take Roy Moore for an example. He won the Republican primary over a more moderate Republican after attacking him mercilessly, because the crazy right can’t stand anyone who might compromise. And this led to their ultimate defeat to a liberal Democrat in the general election, in Alabama of all (5)

Demanding absolute purity from your candidates, rejecting anyone who isn’t as far to the extreme as you wish, and demonizing any of your own candidates who aren’t perfect is not a winning solution.

And too many Democrats haven’t learned that lesson.

In 2016, I was a Bernie supporter but I spent much time criticizing other Bernie supporters who constantly attacked Hillary, spreading lies and libel from various memes (many of which came straight from the Russians, giggling at how easy it was for us to help them).

What’s wrong with saying, “We have two good candidates here, but I prefer one over the other for these reasons”? Why do we decide that if you’re not completely on our side, you’re the enemy?

That doesn’t mean we can’t criticize our own; it doesn’t mean we can’t talk about their faults and encourage them to change their positions on issues where we disagree. But outright attacks on our own? How does that help us win in the long run?

We’re all on the same team ultimately and while we may disagree on some minor thing, we’re in agreement 80% of the time. Destroying each other and thus allowing the other party to win gives us someone we agree with 0% of the time.

And sometimes, maybe only 60% is all we’re going to get. Some states and districts are so red that we have to have moderates on our side or we’ll never win. Better to have a Democrat in there we agree with 60% of the time than a Republican we agree with 0%.

Ronald Reagan once joked that the 11th Commandment was “Thou Shalt Not Speak Ill of any Fellow Republicans.” Maybe Democrats could learn something from the Gipper.


Why this deal is not bad for Democrats

A lot of liberals are criticizing the Democrats — you know, the minority party that doesn’t have a lot of power right now — for not getting everything they wanted in this government shut-down.

They don’t quite understand how politics work. You can’t always get everything you want.


The Democrats gave up nothing. They got CHIP funded like it needed to be funded. The government is back open. And they kept DACA from disappearing.  Sure, it’s still on the table, but it’s not dead.

This is not a bad thing. People are now talking about it. We have another few weeks to build more support for keeping it (and, let’s face it, something like 80% of the public supports it).

Honestly, I’m kind of sick of the “Bernie Bot” mentality that if you’re not 100% in agreement with everything they want, you’re the enemy. I’m sick of the idea that compromise in order to move toward your goal is a bad thing.

Take Obamacare as an example. Was it everything we wanted? No, of course not (as I’ve said on this blog many times). But it’s still better than what we had, and we can move forward to make it even better.

There’s nothing wrong with getting half way up the hill, so long as you keep climbing. Instant gratification is something for children, not adults.

So yeah, do I wish the deal had included keeping DACA? Of course. But Jeez, it could have been killed today and it wasn’t. The Democrats kept the option open at a time when they, as the minority party, have little power.

This is a win, isn’t it?

White House just can’t stop lying

The latest lie blames the Democrats for the government shutdown. This is despite the fact that the Republicans couldn’t even get enough votes from their own party to reach 50%.

Mind you, this isn’t just a talking point. In a completely unprecedented and childish move that is 100% away from “Presidential,” the White House has stopped answering the phone, and people who call get a message blaming the Democrats. I am not making this up.
angry trump

Let’s recap. The GOP said “If you don’t either kill the Dreamer program or CHIP which provides health care to poor children, and if you don’t let us build the wall, we’re going to shut the government down.”

Or, to put it another way, “We have hostages. Do what we say and we will only kill one of them.”

The Dreamer Program (DACA, which stands for “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals”) is supported by 87% of all Americans, who clearly think it’s a pretty good idea. This allows innocent children who were brought here illegally by their parents to stay in this country if they do certain things (don’t get arrested, stay in school, join our military, etc.). It has been wildly successful. People like helping children. But, of course, the GOP hates it for some reason. (Hint: it helps brown people.)

CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program) similarly provides support for kids who, through no fault of their own, are poor.  It is supported by 75% of Americans because, come on, we’re nice people who think children deserve not to die. Once more, the GOP says “screw you” to what the vast majority of Americans want.

And then there’s the Wall that Trump promised Mexico would pay for. Now he wants us to pay for it. This is opposed by 63% of Americans as it has been since Trump first started spouting it on the campaign trail. Do you think the Republicans care what Americans want? (And why only a border wall with Mexico and not Canada?  Hint: brown people again.)

The Democrats are standing up for what the vast majority of Americans want. Yet the GOP still claims it’s the Democrats’ fault.

The House came up with a compromise (because that’s what government is all about — compromising) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer met with the president and worked out a deal. Trump, of course, then broke his promise to Schumer almost immediately and then blamed Schumer. “Negotiating with this White House is like negotiating with jello,” Schumer said.

Yet they still say it’s the Democrats’ fault.

You’d think a man who ran on the platform of being “the world’s greatest negotiator” would have been able to come to some sort of compromise, wouldn’t you? But of course, for that to happen, it would have meant that Trump would have told the truth.

And that’s just clearly not in his character.