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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

The Nutshell Positions of "What Is Aleppo?" Gary Johnson

Category: Presidential Politics
Posted: 09/20/16 09:04

by Dave Mindeman

Just in case you are looking at Gary Johnson as an alternative, here are some of his positions:

1. Wants to abolish the Department of Education.

2. Believes that Climate Change is real but that we should not interfere with market forces in energy consumption. Included in that is no subsidies for renewable energy.

3. Is in favor of a consumption tax for the economy.

4. Wants to go back to privatized health care. No government involvement.

5. Does support gay marriage.

6. On immigration, he does favor a path to citizenship.

7. No foreign interventions. Congress must be involved.

8. Thinks police shootings are related to drug war - which he would eliminate. But no mention of race being a factor.

9. Opposes gun restrictions of any kind. Full NRA position.

10. Supports legalization of marijuana.

OK - there is the good and the bad of Gary Johnson.

Just FYI
comments (1) permalink

Utah May Have An Answer For MN's Primary vs Caucus Issue

Category: Presidential Politics
Posted: 03/21/16 02:03

by Dave Mindeman

There is something that bears watching on Tuesday...and it happens to be on the Republican side. In the great state of Utah, the GOP is doing an experiment that is worth watching.

They are holding their Presidential ballot via the internet.

This might be an idea that can solve the Minnesota issue of primary vs caucus. And here are the reasons why I think it can help....

First of all, the registration data would be done online. No more data entry at the local level....(which I guarantee you can be very cumbersome).

Second, you won't have to have a large number of people all flocking to locations at the same time with incomplete information and a lot of confusion.

Third, you can still hold a caucus meeting for those that want to do more. They can hold their vote in person and elect leadership among the group that is already committed to doing more. (You could even have a comparison of internet vs. in person voting)

Fourth, it could save the state some administration time and money. If you don't have to occupy polling places or print ballots and other material, that has to be a win as well, right?

There are logistics that may have problems. That is why the Utah vote will be interesting to observe. They will see the challenges first hand and there will be ideas about how to improve that process.

First question mark would be how to guarantee some ballot integrity. Online voting needs to be secure. But in reality, how accurate do you think the vote count on caucus night was anyway? The voting by that flood of people in a small time window must have had a ton of mistakes...more than likely not intentionally, but mistakes none the less. Still, if there can be a reasonable amount of integrity via security protocols, it could be just as accurate as what we are doing.

Secondly, would the party want some control over who would vote. If it is completely open, then the general electorate would be involved - especially if there is an incumbent in one party and an open election in the other. There might need to be some kind of filter if the party wants to keep it within its own membership.

Still on the whole, it is a process that is worth looking at. Watch Utah on Tuesday night and listen for any discussion on this process.

It might be in Minnesota's future.
comments (0) permalink

It's OK To Point Out Dem Candidate Differences - But Be Fair

Category: Presidential Politics
Posted: 02/07/16 15:25, Edited: 02/07/16 15:25

by Dave Mindeman

I realize that when you have an intra-party contest, there will be points of contention and differences that need to be defined. I get that. But there are a couple of arguments going on lately which I think are pretty lame. And it is one on each side.

First, in regards to the Clinton contention that Bernie Sanders' preference for single payer will blow up Obamacare. That is not even close to accurate and pretty unfair. With a President Sanders, Obamacare will never be repealed and will only be dismantled if a better system can actually pass Congress. If he can't get it through, then we still have the current system. End of argument.

Secondly, the Sanders campaign charges about Clinton's Goldman Sachs speeches also stretches the bounds of credulity. Yes, Clinton takes a lot of corporate donations and yes, a lot of money comes from Wall Street. She has taken a similar pathway to most of the other Presidential candidates, including Obama. Bernie has carved out a preferred donor base, but not many political figures are able to do that. Kudos to him - but it hardly makes Hillary Clinton some kind of corporate shill. I live in the 2nd Congressional district - I know corporate shills.

And let's take the Goldman Sachs speeches. Yeah, that is a lot of money to be paid for a speech, but Bill and Hillary Clinton built a reputation and a global foundation that commands those types of fees. Goldman Sachs is not buying influence - they are trying to take advantage of a brand. When they can announce that Hillary Clinton is going to give a speech on foreign policy at their venue, it raises the profile of not only Hillary Clinton, but also Goldman Sachs....or whatever corporate or non-profit entity manages to get either of them for their discussions.

Sure, it is easy to look at the correlation and be suspicious. But I also think it is unfair to assume the worst. I think she has trouble explaining such fees because the Clinton's have acquired a high level of influence. I doubt that Goldman Sachs is going to be able to pressure the Clintons to bend to their will when they have global connections all over the world that interconnect in a host of ways.

The proof of that is a thoughtful and tough policy on the banking industry. Nobel economist Paul Krugman said that Hillary's plan is the best of any of the Presidential candidates.

And in addition, Clinton's reasoning about representing New York, the home of Wall Street is valid as well. Bernie Sanders' representation of Vermont has definitely affected his stances on the gun industry. Both Hillary and Bernie are moving leftward on those positions now....and for me, their explanations are good enough.

So, before we get into these constant charges and counter charges in social media, please remember - these two candidates are head and shoulders above the public policies that we would see if the GOP candidate would win.

If you want to point out differences, I understand, but let's keep it fair.
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