A primer on identity politics

There has been a lot of talk about “identity politics” since the election, too much of it self-serving complaints from arguably the most privileged demographic in America until it was eaten by its own dragons — working-class white men.

I want to remind all of us, especially those among us who profess to be Christian, that what we call “identity politics” is at least as old as the earliest Christian texts:

Matthew 25:31-46 (emphasis mine):

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’ Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?’ Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

I offer this not as a Christian polemic, but as a reminder that the stance of the Democratic Party towards the least among us is a direct consequence of the teachings of Christianity. I don’t know about anyone else, but I find it impossible to reconcile the highlighted portions of the above text with the hostility towards women and minority groups that laces the endless attacks on my party and its last campaign.

Some of us are disparaged for naming the racism, sexism and misanthropy of the Donald Trump campaign and of those who voted for Mr. Trump. I offer this in a similar vein:
Luke 9:1-6 (emphasis mine):

When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. He told them: “Take nothing for the journey—no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra shirt. Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that town. If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.” So they set out and went from village to village, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.

In my view, during this most recent campaign we Democrats entered the metaphorical house of millions of Americans. A majority of Americans welcomed us. About sixty million Americans did not. When I walk away from those who reject our message, I “leave their town and shake the dust off [my] feet as a testimony against them.”

I agree that we each need to listen to and hear all of us. I think we also need to be clear about what we believe. I believe we need to take people at their word. When we have said our piece, and our audience says “screw you, I want mine first”, then I think the right answer is to “leave their town and shake the dust off [our] feet.”

That may not be good politics, but it is MUCH older than Bill or Hillary Clinton.

Recommended by christopher, fredrichlariccia.



Discuss

95 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. I appreciate this thoughtful response

    Which is exactly how we move forward. All I reject is the false binary between supporting social justice and advocating for economic justice. I can’t emphasize this enough.

    Hillary didn’t advocate as strongly for economic justice as she did for social justice, which is why she lost the general. Bernie didn’t advocate for social justice as strongly as he advocated for economic justice which is why he lost the primary. We must do both. We must do both at all times. And we must do both in every state.

    • Agreed

      I neither intend nor see anything here that impedes striving for economic justice.

      It is the hue and cry against “identity politics” that I reject — I think some of us have been rightly pursuing “identity politics” for several thousand years, and we Democratics since our party correctly and belatedly ejected our southern racists in 1968.

      • The Atari Democrats/DLC also rejected the hard hats in subsequent conventions

        The ones who were racist and the ones who weren’t.

        I think many of our unions are already racially inclusive and welcoming i immigrants and we need to empower them to take the dual message not just tot heir members but to the entire working class. The Wobblies were right-it’s abiitnorganizig sll workers and not just the ones in your given trade. The SEIU gets this, so does Richard Trumka of the AFL-CIO.

  2. I miss striker57

    There’s a guy who anticipated this problem early and worked his ass off to find a way forward to bring the worker wing and progressive professional wing together in common cause. He was the only commentator here in a trade union and I miss his perspective.

  3. I think we have to be careful not to view Trump's win

    as a triumph of white identity politics or solely the result of white men saying “I want mine first.”

    The Democrats are as guilty as the Republicans of ignoring the concerns of middle class voters in this country. Perhaps even more than Republicans, Democrats have embraced a philosophy not of helping “the least of these” among us, but rather of saying “we know what’s best for you,” if they pay any attention to those people at all.

    When people of any group, race or ethnicity feel they are being viewed and treated with contempt by a political system, they will either vote to change it or not vote at all.

    When I tried to contact the staffs of two Democratic state legislators on behalf of constituents of theirs who are being railroaded by the system, I immediately sensed their indifference to those constituents. I knew they would never help them.

    The most privileged demographic in America has never been working class white men. Like many other demographics, white working class men are struggling to get by. They may be misguided in their choice of the man they’ve latched on to as their savior, but they recognize that the Democratic Party, symbolized for me by the legislators I’ve recently dealt with, have no interest in them.

    • I intended no such interpretation

      I intended only to remind those of us who profess to be Christian, or those of us who were raised to embrace Christian values, of the above passages from the holiest of Christian texts.

      In my view, this is less about how we interpret Donald Trump’s win and more about what each of us believes these texts mean for us.

  4. The most privileged class has always been the wealthy

    and while many have been white men, so many here lump the two together in defense of their stand that white men do not deserve an outreach from the party, a voice in the platform, or anything more than blame for electing Donald Trump.

    • What, exactly is "outreach"?

      People will eventually have tomove your way a bit, I suppose, because the alternative is a white flag. But what exactly is “outreach”?

      Do you want there to be a Democratic Committee for the Advancement of the Interest of Middle Aged White Guys, or is something like reaching out to church groups, little league parents, parents of kids in public schools sufficient?

      Its not like we all live in a ghetto and attend the same church.

      • An outreach is:

        The extending of services or assistance beyond current or usual limits. In political context, it’s going after a particular demographic that one feels has not been solicited sufficiently, or at all. In the case of the Massachusetts State Committee, there are outreaches for: Affirmative Action, Disability, GLBT, Labor, Latino, Senior, Veterans and Military Families, Women, and Youth

        We have an outreach for women, why not men? One for blacks, one for Latino, why not whites and Anglos?

        As I look at this list, I am not really represented at all. Why not?

        • Your List is Primarily Marginalized Groups

          We have an outreach for women, why not men? One for blacks, one for Latino, why not whites and Anglos?

          White men, in general, form the political, religious and corporate power structure in the US dating back to the founding of the country. There is outreach for those groups because they have been typically left out (or forced out) of the process.

          The quoted above is dangerously close to:

          • Why isn’t there a white history month?
          • What about HWCU’s?
          • Why can’t there be a NAAWP?
          • Why can’t I say n*gger but blacks can?

          • If I am in the process

            why have my wages been flat of falling for the past 45 years?

            If I’m in control, of it the system is working for me and those like me, how come we’re not better off?

            You see, that’s the problem with identity politics. Yeah, I may look like Mitt Romney or Donald Trump, but look past our IDENTITY and look at our wallets.

            The RICH, not the white men, are in control. The State Party marginalizes white males. We have no representation.

            I would concede your point in the past, perhaps in the 1940′s – 1960′s but not since and not now.

            • The state party does not marginalize white males, that's a crock of shit

              The legislature is overwhelmingly white male even in minority majority districts like Brockton or the Suffolk and Middlesex Senate Seat. Conservative white makes always win our primaries when better progressive women of color run against them. So come off that nonsense.

              What you really mean is there is no outreach to the unenrolled voter who maybe voted for Obama, Brown, Baker and Trump while voting for their local DeLeocratic rep. I agree with that.

              And nationally I’m with you. I’m also against the idea it’s sexist to replace a corporate friendly social liberal out of tune female with a labor friendly social liberal in tune male for Minority Leader. There is something to argue there that we need to have some geographic and demographic diversity in our leadership that largely has shut out white midwestern names

              • Scott Brown

                Tell me why white males went heavy for Scott Brown, especially white males who were members of labor unions. I don’t give a crock of shit about what our legislators look like. Joe 6-Pack looks at our party and sees no one he can relate to.

                Conservative white males always win our primaries when better progressive women of color run against them

                You mean rich white males, connected to the wealthy class, right? On that I agree. (has little do do with conservative)

          • Of course the easiest way to avoid marginalizing anyone

            is to remove the margins all together.

            Replace all the “Affirmative Action, Disability, GLBT, Labor, Latino, Senior, Veterans and Military Families, Women, and Youth” and insert ONE word “Working Class” That does not exclude anyone, except the trust fund kids and their .1% parents. We can win elections without them.

            • Please Define "Working Class"

              Per your account, “working class” would include everyone but the .1% and trust funders? I think that definition is way too broad. I’ve never considered myself to be working class. I came from a middle class family, went to college and work in IT. I am neither working class, a trust funder or a .1%er.

              • Indeed

                I think that’s why this particular appeal has never worked so well in the US, because “classes” are juuuust fluid enough here, unlike UK, so that very few people would actually label their own selves as “working class” but will always choose the more respectable “middle” label– the decline of which notwithstanding.

                “Working class, unite!” didn’t really work all that well in the US, even in the Red heyday of a century ago.

              • Working class is most of us

                A better way to understand who is “working class” is to know who is not working class.

                Rent seekers are not working class. Who are rent seekers? Rent-seekers use of the resources of a company, an organization or an individual to obtain economic gain from others without reciprocating any benefits to society through wealth creation. An example of rent-seeking is when a company lobbies the government for loan subsidies, grants or tariff protection.
                According to Adam Smith, individuals and businesses can earn income from three sources: profit, wages and rent. Generating profit usually requires risking capital in hopes of a return, while earning wages tends to be labor-intensive and requires hard work. Rent is the easiest and least risky type of income one can earn, as it requires only the ownership of resources and the ability to use those resources to generate income through lending their use to others. Because rent income necessitates less risk or work than other types of income, it follows logically that individuals and companies seek to earn this income whenever possible. Rent-seeking becomes a problem when entities engage in it to increase their share of the economic pie without increasing the size of the pie.

                Donald Trump is a rent seeker, as is Mitt Romney as was Gordon Gekko.

                In short, if you earn your income by what you DO versus what you OWN and RENT OUT, you are “working class”.

                You seem ashamed or embarrassed at being called working class because you “have a degree” and “work in IT”….that’s sad. It’s also part of the problem. If you do not see the connection you have with the cafeteria workers at your college or the people who clean at night at your IT business, divided, we fail.

                • Get your nose out of the text books...

                  Words have meaning. If “working class” is essentially everyone, it degrades the meaning of the word. We are not using Adam Smith, or Karl Marx to describe working class.

                  Working class, as I interpret it, is commonly used (at least politically) to describe a group dependent on physical/manual labor and often paid hourly.

                  And screw you for saying I am ashamed or embarrassed about being working class. I’d proudly consider myself working class but it would degrade the meaning of the word and the hard work of those that need advocacy for fair wages.

                  • You've got it bass akward

                    If “working class” is essentially everyone, it elevates the word.

                    I’m sick and tired of the “educated” professional class of Democrats spitting on labor.

                    If you believe the need for a “Middle Class”, you support the notion that there HAS to be a lower class.

                    Maybe you need someone to look down on, not me.

                    • There might be something to that

                      But I doubt the phrase covers what you want it to cover.

                      My grandfather would have HATED it, because it would have a certain shanty Irish vibe, whereas he worked his ass off, paid his union dues, and had a his own roof, didn’t take the dole, etc.

                      That, and, for the most part the phrase has historically been most used by those who consider it a description of a permanent status– whether a status thought ought to remain permanent or a status that can be overthrown by seizing the means of production through revolution, etc.

                      For that reason, “middle” has always been the more inclusive phrase in the USA. And, with respect to most of the issues that you have raised, it does not really matter that much, even if you have a big mortgage in Wellesley. Because unless you have some pretty sizable accumulated wealth, the ice is getting thin for everyone.

                    • LOL

                      How the hell am I spitting on labor? Because I used the term “middle class”? You know who else uses the term middle class?

                      You seem ashamed or embarrassed at being called working class because you “have a degree” and “work in IT”….that’s sad.

                      Maybe you need someone to look down on, not me.

                      Learn to argue facts and stop trying to insult me.

            • That doesn't make sense, though

              Because it goes in reverse, as well.

              “Hello, this is ABCD from the Mass Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus, and I’d like to talk to someone about the Democratic Party’s position on gay marriage.”

              “Umm, I’ll put you in touch with John, who covers the Working Class.”

              “Hi, this is John. Marriage equality? Umm. Well, we support an increased minimum wage, a progressive tax code, and a living wage for everyone. What’s that? Yeah, yeah, I understand your question. We’ll put it in the “to do” file.”

              “Hey, John, a guy from Planned Parenthood is on Line 2.”

              “Hi, this is John. Reproductive choice? Umm. Well, we support an increased minimum wage, a progressive tax code, and a living wage for everyone.”

              • Does this make sense?

                “Hello, this is Joe. I work at the local Walmart managing the sporting good department, I’d like to know more about what the Democratic Party is about!” I’d like to get involved. Can you connect me with someone in outreach for new members?

                “ummm, we have an outreach for Affirmative Action!”

                “Yeah, well I’m Irish, on my mom’s side and German on my dad’s”

                “Okay, that leaves out Latino…..are you gay?”

                “Nope, been married to my wife, Linda, for 23 years. We’re heterosexual”

                “Okay, how old are you?”

                “46, why?”

                “Well, we have outreach for youth and elderly…….are you disabled inany way, we have a outreach for disabled?”

                “Nope, I’m in good shape”

                “Okay, you’re not a woman, and do not plan to be one?”

                “No, not in my plans”

                “Because we have outreach for women and trans people, look, I’m trying, okay!”

                “Yeah, I hear you”

                “How about a veteran?”

                “No, never served”

                “Well Joe, I’m afraid I don’t know who to connect you to out of all our outreach committees. Why not ask your wife to call back tomorrow and we can talk to her. Okay? “

                • Wouldn't you just ask

                  Hi, Joe! Why do you want to be involved?

                  And then direct him accordingly?

                  In this entire exchange, your “Joe” doesn’t really care about anything at all. Doesn’t want anything. Has no goals or aspirations of any kind.

                  The only thing your “Joe” cares about is to make sure that certain other people, who have specific and concrete issues, are ALSO treated as if they don’t care about anything, or want anything.

                  If Joe was something other than an inert mass, then he could answer:

                  I’m a manager at Wal-Mart, and can’t even get Health Insurance for my family. “Please talk to someone in Labor.”

                  I’m the manager at the Wal-Mart in Granby. And the roads are so poor here that we can’t get trucks in and out without crashing into Jimmy’s tobacco barn. “You probably want someone who knows about Rural issues.”

                  I’m Joe and I have kids. “Education.”

                  • Okay

                    But if Jose calls he gets special treatment, as does Linda. Why?

                    I just went over to the Republican state site and it reads:

                    …stands for the principle that we are the Party open to all. We are also the Party of opportunity for all: opportunity for every one of every race, religion, color, national origin, age and sex. We believe in full participation with equal opportunity for men and women, for minorities and heritage groups, and for all Americans regardless of age or social or economic status.

                    Why is that not enough?

                    Why do we have an “outreach” for all the demographics we typically dominate in every election?

                    • Again, as a practical matter

                      Jose gets “special treatment” because Jose has a specific interests in a specific issue. Republicans need not be able to respond to that inquiry because they do not care for Jose in any way, and as has been recently demonstrated, actively seek to do him harm.

                      Jose, likely, has specific interests in immigration, education (possibly education for children whose first language is not English), and in not being subject to violence or discrimination because his name is Jose and not John. He likely also has interests in the social safety net, tax/wage policy. He might also be a veteran. And, lo! There are people to talk to him.

                      And there sits Joe, seething with anger and resentment– not because no one responds to him (he doesn’t even have any questions!!), but because they don’t ignore people he doesn’t like.

                • For the record...

                  …that’s not at all how a conversation would go. You would probably be directed to your local state committee members or town/ward committee chair.

                  • Or...

                    He would be directed to the newly created White-Male-Straight-Middle-Aged-Rejector-of-Class-Based-Terminology-Outreach-Manager for which he started a MoveOn Petition to get created.

        • That doesn't answer the question at all

          I asked what the outreach that you want looks like. That’s a list of outreach that you, evidently, do not want, or at least are not interested in. OK, I get that. But, as a practical matter, all of those other “outreach” efforts exist because those groups have some organization of their own, not necessarily completely political. A church group, an issue-advocacy organization, or something, so that some Democratic Party person can dial the phone and someone takes the call.

          John T. May, the newly appointed Outreach chair of the new subcommittee that you are seeking. What is the subcommittee called? Who do you call that will pick up the phone?

          And what issues are important, that aren’t covered by “Senior,” “Labor,” “Veterans,” or “Youth”? Outreach is a little pointless if it isn’t advocating something. So what is missing?

          My own view is that outreach to churches/synagogues/mosques is conspicuously absent. Would that be enough?

  5. Sorry Tom, I Think This Moral Superiority Is a Turn-Off to Many Moral People

    also “working class” is now synonomous with not able to make ends meet, not sure where you will get the money to retire, worried about the burden their kids will have with college debt (if they want to do better than working class)
    This is the attitude that will continue to kill the Democratic party unless we start empathizing with working class people who do not live in progressive urban neighborhoods.
    Tom, you may be a good guy but you come across as an elite self-centered moralist who sees everything as black and white. When a voice like yours dominates the conversation like it has in many corners of the Dem party defeat is close by.

    eb3-fka-ernie-boch-iii   @   Tue 29 Nov 1:06 PM
    • Funny

      I quoted two passages from the Gospel, for crying out loud. I don’t doubt that those are a “turn off” to some.

      I’ll repeat here what I wrote upthread

      I intended only to remind those of us who profess to be Christian, or those of us who were raised to embrace Christian values, of the above passages from the holiest of Christian texts.

      In my view, this is less about how we interpret Donald Trump’s win and more about what each of us believes these texts mean for us.

      What, pray tell, do YOU think these texts mean for you (never mind those many “Moral People” you reference)?

      • It's Not What The Text Means to Me, It's Your Hi-Jacking The Text and Using it to Claim The Democrats Have Moral Superiority

        but as a reminder that the stance of the Democratic Party towards the least among us is a direct consequence of the teachings of Christianity. I don’t know about anyone else, but I find it impossible to reconcile the highlighted portions of the above text with the hostility towards women and minority groups that laces the endless attacks on my party and its last campaign.

        Question Tom, would you steel a loaf bread to feed your starving family? Tell me what you would do Saint Tom.

        eb3-fka-ernie-boch-iii   @   Tue 29 Nov 1:29 PM
        • would you also "steal" a loaf of bread to feed your family?

          .

          eb3-fka-ernie-boch-iii   @   Tue 29 Nov 1:30 PM
          • He would, if he were Catholic (ha, tom)

            It is pretty basic Catholic ethical teaching is that if the family is starving, then it isn’t theft because no reasonable person would deny a starving person bread.

            Didn’t you ever go to Sunday school?

            • Not Catholic.

              Never heard of this. Stealing is a commandment, not a guideline.

              • Um ... try again

                I, um, think CMD is perhaps on the right path here.

                While not a Catholic, I do know how to use Google and the institutional Catholic church does, in fact, put its catechism online. I direct attention to paragraph 2408 (emphasis mine):

                The seventh commandment forbids theft, that is, usurping another’s property against the reasonable will of the owner. There is no theft if consent can be presumed or if refusal is contrary to reason and the universal destination of goods. This is the case in obvious and urgent necessity when the only way to provide for immediate, essential needs (food, shelter, clothing . . .) is to put at one’s disposal and use the property of others.

                The same paragraph is, by the way, also available from the Vatican.

                Like it or not, I think church teaching is reasonably obvious and consistent about such matters.

                • As I said...

                  …I had never heard of it. Not impressed. I had no idea situational ethics got its start in the Vatican.

                  • Nevertheless...

                    …I had never heard of it. Not impressed. I had no idea situational ethics got its start in the Vatican.

                    Jewish law, specifically Leviticus 23, forbids plowing to the very edge of your field or harvesting the gleanings. You are, in that instance, to leave something for the poor and the foreigner. Can’t get very much more ‘situational’ than that. That is, in fact, how Boaz got a wife (Book of Ruth) and how, therefore, King David got a great-grandmother….

                    Jesus, in the New Testament, most clearly in Mark 2 when he states that “the sabbath was made for man, man was not made for the sabbath” affirms this. When confronted on the ‘work’ he and his disciples were doing, on the sabbath, going through the field picking grain and eating it, Jesus specifically cites David, in what we now know as (IIRC) the First Book of Samuel, entering the temple and eating the bread that was only ‘lawful’ for the priests to eat because he was hungry (and, at that time, David was also on the run from Saul)

                  • Long before the Vatican

                    Try reading the Bible sometime.

                    Not as a religious text, but as a literary work that provides insight into way men (sorry, it’s mostly about men) grappled with the same issues millennia ago that we grapple with today.

                    Let me just run an instant replay of the highlights from the threadstarter:

                    “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.”

                    …for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.

                    just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.

                    If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.

                    I remind us that, distractions and chaff from EB3 notwithstanding, the above passages predate the Vatican by several thousand years — and strike me as aimed directly at those who would have us “move beyond identity politics”.

                  • Not to go all 16th century here...

                    But this is a classic example of where Mssrs. Luther and Calvin threw out the baby with the bathwater, and then tossed out the bucket and soap for good measure.

                    Sola scriptura is just another way of saying “extreme narrowness of mind and unthinking deference to authority” which is a bit ironic, given the circumstances against which they rebelled.

                    The background is the phrase “universal destination of goods,” a phrase coined by Paul VI but a concept dating from the earliest church. In essence, goods and property are gifts of the Creator to all (hu)mankind, and not gifts to specific people. Charity is thus not a gift made by the rich to the poor, but rather a restitution of what the rich wrongfully took from the poor in the first place.

                    So, as Stom noted, theft is usurping another’s property against his reasonable will. If I have bread and keep it from a starving man, that is, almost by definition, unreasonable– a sin against justice, charity, and temperance. If I am starving and need the bread for my own sustenance, then my refusal might be reasonable. If I am starving, and the one seeking the bread is not, then my refusal is obviously reasonable.

                    Stealing may be a commandment, but the superior and overriding commandment is to love thy neighbor as yourself, which is the notion from which this– not very Republican!!!– concept springs. In Catholic teaching, the one who refuses to give the bread that s/he does not need is as much a thief as the one who takes it from the starving man’s hands.

                    • Amen!

                      Glad your parish has a knowledgeable person like yourself involved in it!

                      The argument about sola scriptura is one I’ve had often with my wife
                      and in laws. Sola fide as well. The former actually prevents a wider
                      Range of ethical traditions from Platonism to pre-Christian Judaism that did influence the Church and its social teaching from doing so. The former prevents the possibility of salvation for those outside the faith, which the Catholic Church actually allows for merely considering the Church the best vessel for faith to be received in.

                    • Dad - does this imply coerced giving?

                      And again, I’ve never paid much attention to Catholic teaching.

                      All the quotes, including Tom’s snide ones, speak of giving voluntarily. Which is an absolute duty, no question. But to speak as if it is acceptable to steal since the other has a duty to give anyways defeats the ability of the other to live up to their duty, and assumes that the one stealing knows enough of the circumstances of the person he is stealing from to know that they can spare it.

                      The farmer leaving for the gleaners is doing so voluntarily as his duty in which he should be joyful. Jesus reminding the apostles that how you teat others is nothing but a reflection of how you would treat Him is a reminder to fulfill that duty.

                      In my tradition, there is no Paragraph 2048, subsection b, to inform me what to think. We have the Bible. We have theologians with valuable thoughts like C.S. Lewis, Kirkegaard, and others who offer their commentary and ideas. But since we do not have an intercessor as is the Catholic tradition, we decide for ourselves what is the moral path to God as we understand and believe.

                      To me, justifying theft because there is a duty to give robs both the one who possesses and the one who needs.

                    • That is a different question

                      The original question is whether the starving man is stealing, and thus blameworthy, if he takes bread without permission. The answer to that is, plainly, no.

                      The question of whether the one with bread is “coerced” into giving it is slightly different, as illustrated above, because the obligation is based on reason. People are entitled to reasonable property– but nevertheless hold it all for the good of all– the commonweal. So, does that mean Mr. Extra Bread is “coerced” into giving the extra away? Yes. It is either a duty, or it isn’t.

                      I’m not sure how you came to the conclusion that “theologians with valuable thoughts” are limited to Protestants. In any event, you have the same Bible as we do, and sure enough, right there in Mark Ch. 12, it says that the (second) greatest commandment of all– superseding the “Big 10″ is Love Your Neighbor as Yourself. And, really, if Protestant “theologians with valuable thoughts” would find our starving man blameworthy, then honestly they could use some better thinkers. Nor is it clear why you presume that thinking is something exclusive to Protestants, as if Catholics are barred from exercising their own informed conscience. (Really, is it 1616 or 2016?) See the word “reasonable” sprinkled throughout the discussion above? That’s where Catholics are supposed to decide for themselves…

                      The way that you phrase the question handily illustrates my own decision to stay with my Church, notwithstanding my various disagreements over sexual morality. Charity, as you phrase it, is for “me”– if you take what I do not willingly give, it deprives “me” of my chance to be charitable. Charity is an opportunity for “me” to feel joy. Extrapolating, what is “my” personal relationship to the Savior? It is very much about “me” and me exercising my personal autonomy for the moral improvement of me. It straightforwardly emphasizes individualism.

                      That is, rather emphatically, NOT the Catholic tradition, at least not the modern Catholic tradition. In the Catholic tradition, “me” is almost entirely irrelevant. On the contrary, the most important thing in Catholicism isn’t me, or my personal relationship with God, but rather how I interact with others. What matters is what I do, and how I treat others.

                      In our little example here, my opportunity to be voluntarily charitable is entirely subordinate to the simple fact that someone is starving. Which makes sense to me. If I waited so long that the starving man was forced to take bread without my permission, I have already failed.

                      Put another way, Catholic social morality and theology is fairly unabashedly socialist. That;s why Republicans don’t like Catholics unless the Catholic is talking about sex.

                    • Well said

                      It’s why this son of the church came back and will likely remain, warts and all. From One of our theologians Father Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange , O.P.:

                      The Church is intolerant in principle because she believes; she is tolerant in practice because she loves. The enemies of the Church are tolerant in principle because they do not believe; they are intolerant in practice because they do not love.

                      I would rather the church hold the line on defining sin while being very generous with who’s eligible for mercy. And faith divorced from works is hollow while works without faith are still a means of receiving grace and encountering the divine.

                    • Does the same rule apply to toast?

                      just wondering.

                      eb3-fka-ernie-boch-iii   @   Wed 30 Nov 9:04 PM
                    • only if it was purchased at Market Basket

                      .

                    • stealing is stealing

                      ” The original question is whether the starving man is stealing, and thus blameworthy, if he takes bread without permission. The answer to that is, plainly, no. ”

                      Thank (fill in your deity) we have separation of church and state (not enough for my taste). The idea that all these religious leaders jet about, ride in their cars on the way to huge temples, mosques, churches then preach that well off people should share more and in this instance absolve the hungry guy from stealing is ridiculous. The sermon on the mount didn’t occur in a million dollar building with oak doors and stained glass windows.
                      When all these religions sell off their properties, cars etc and send the money to soup kitchens and have their services in tents, then they can tell me I need to do more for the poor.

                    • A misconception

                      Dad – I did not answer you sooner as I left rather than succumb to bullying and taunting from NPPOW (Nasty Petty Piece of Work, the player formerly known as Tom).

                      This is a blog discussion, not meant to be comprehensive. I mentioned Lewis as an influence I found compelling, and did not mean to imply the examples I mentioned were the only ones. St. Augustine at a minimum would be on my list.

                      I think we all believe as we are inspired rather than by chapter and verse alone. For example, I never accepted Leviticus as a moral guide on homosexuality. It is mainly a list of dietary and sanitation strictures; anyone who uses it to condemn gay marriage must also refrain from wearing garments with mixed threads or eating clam chowder. It is like trying to get moral guidance by reading the tax code. But that us only MY understanding and point I view. Every person who reads a theological text will take away a different interpretation and emphasis. The relationship to God is personal, not institutional.

                      I understand and respect your point if view; I just don’t agree with it. Faith and morals are intensely personal reasonings; if it does not move you it is worthless. It is why freedom of conscience and belief are so important in this nation.

                    • Bullying? Taunting?

                      My oh my (emphasis mine).

                      Not impressed. I had no idea situational ethics got its start in the Vatican.

                      All the quotes, including Tom’s snide ones, speak of giving voluntarily.

                      Situational ethics? “Snide” quotes? Who’s “bullying” and “taunting” here?

                      I made a claim (“That may not be good politics, but it is MUCH older than Bill or Hillary Clinton”). EB3 (no bullying or taunting from EB3, for sure. Not EVER. No sirree) offered a snarky attempt at a trick question that CMD answered rather succinctly and you challenged.

                      See, I think that the attitude you and too many others express around here is diametrically opposed to everything that the literary character of Jesus Christ said and taught in the only source we have about that character. My read of the exchanges regarding the catechism, theft, and so on is that history argues against the position you’ve staked out.

                      I get that you and others feel that it’s “bullying” and “taunting” for me to speak such heresy. I intend to continue.

                    • religious leaders

                      I have very little exposure to real progressives which is why I enjoy reading the exchanges here. I hope no one is ever offended by my questions or remarks (immigration hits home for you and you thought I was being offensive before, but my exchanges were all true) and I brought up something up-thread which I wish someone from your camp could explain.

                      I had a little Protestant indoctrination as a kid, I know mostly Catholics, a few of the Jewish faith, but mostly what I read is how these religious ideas get explained. Of 100 people I know maybe 5 go to church regularly, so I have few people to ask.

                      The churches are wealthy. How can they teach and admonish others to take care of the poor when they hoard so much? Maybe for Mother Theresa I would have emptied my wallet, she walked the walk. If I walk into my vacation home and find homeless squatters do I evict them? (I’m sure some progressives on here have more than one home). Tom you have a multi family, should you be charging others for a place to live? Why do churches lock their doors, shouldn’t the homeless be allowed to camp out inside these huge buildings, or would that cut down on attendance so much it would hurt donations?

                      I don’t want these religious leaders imposing their views on things such as abortion (it’s up to the women) or us paying more taxes (when they’re tax free).

                    • Too long for a response here

                      The questions you ask require much more thought and words than fit here.

                      If you really care, I suggest that you attend a worship service, introduce yourself to the clergy or rabbi, and make an appointment to discuss these (the end of a service, with dozens of other congregants waiting to speak to the same person, is not a good time). All the clergy I’ve ever known — multiple Episcopal priests and even bishops, several rabbis (some of them women, because Jews have been ordaining women for years) — have office hours precisely in order to have conversations like this with people like you (and me).

                      If I don’t charge rent, my wife and I can’t afford to live here. Urban neighborhoods where people want to live require that property owners be able to make the investments in property needed to keep the neighborhood livable. My neighbors and I, owners and renters alike, understand this. Our tenants are very happy. They pay below-market rent, they know that their landlord lives on-site and makes needed repairs immediately. When our tenant had a medical emergency in January, my wife and I called the ambulance, waited with her for it to arrive, and accompanied her in the ER until her out-of-town family could get there.

                      Here in Somerville, as elsewhere, we do have a problem with some non-resident property owners. One formula for “keeping rent affordable” is to do NOTHING on the property, so that it becomes a dangerous eyesore, health hazard, and firetrap. As in so much of life, in my view “balance” is the key word.

                      We have just one property, by the way, and my wife and I feel very fortunate to be able to own it. We are happy to pay our taxes, and welcome the opportunity to pay higher taxes if our prosperity means that, because we recognize that a great part of our own prosperity is a result of extreme sacrifice made by others.

                      I’m really serious about talking to clergy in your area, I think you may be in for a surprise. You might contact Aileen DiBenedetto, the rector at Christ Episcopal Church in Rochdale, or Grace Episcopal Church in Oxford. Or you might arrange to meet with Doug Fisher, the Bishop of Western MA (his office is in Springfield).

                      As much as I love online forums like this, they can never replace direct, face to face contact and discussion. I suggest that if you care about these things, reach out to others who also care about them. I think you’ll find a great many of them gathered wherever people worship.

              • Freudian slip?

                By the way, I’m pretty sure that it’s NOT stealing that is a commandment.

              • And speaking of commandments ...

                Speaking of commandments, where does “Thou shalt not kill” fit into this theology you propose?

                It seems to me that most of the civilized world figured out a VERY long time ago that real life is not nearly so simple as “fill-in-the-blank is a commandment, not a guideline”.

                Some religious traditions wrote it down in a catechism. Others wrote it in lengthy writings, each called a “midrash”.

                Some just punted, and started printing bumper-stickers.

        • Sorry, no sale

          Nope. Not going to play your game. Thankfully, I don’t yet have to make a decision like you offer. I’ve spent a lifetime avoiding that need, and I haven’t knowingly thrown any scapegoat under the bus along the way.

          I’m no saint (I actually don’t believe in saints at all).

          I’m not surprised you don’t want to answer. Your response exemplifies what I meant when I wrote:

          When we have said our piece, and our audience says “screw you, I want mine first”, then I think the right answer is to “leave their town and shake the dust off [our] feet.”

    • Yes, Ernie, it is the self-centered elitists

      who are really turning people off from the Democrats. I cannot count the number of Trump voters whom I have talked to in the last three weeks who were:
      1) Registered Democrats or former Democrats
      2) “deplorables” who resented being called names and voted for Trump out of spite.
      Name calling and holier-than-thou attitudes will not help to energize the Democratic Party. When the Democrats reelected Pelosi as their leader today, they just guaranteed another loss of seats in two years. She will replace Hillary as the most disliked poliitician in America. Sad that only you, JConway and JohnT are aware of this disconnect on this site. Sadder still that the leading lights know so little about human nature.

      • Great flame, but ...

        Great flame, nicely hostile.

        Please help me understand what your comment has to do with:

        “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.”

        …for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.

        just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.

        If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.

        • Tom, with all due respect,

          many people are tired of biblical platitudes. They are almost as tired of them as they are of the platitudes spouted by the liberal press and politicians. You guys simply refuse to see the real reasons why Trump won the election: people are tired of all the old bs cliches and were ready to vote for anyone who finally said what he thought. This is not a flame, nor is it meant to be hostile. You know that I respect your intelligence and all that you bring to this blog.

          • Edgar, with all due respect

            I am tired of people who are tired of “platitudes”. I’ve been hearing the “real reasons” you’re talking about for most of my life. I find that most of them aren’t, in fact, real at all. Perhaps to you these are “cliches” and “platitudes”. In my view, it follows that those who dismiss the “platitudes” and “cliches” and pay attention only to what they deem “real” end up voting for counterfeits like Donald Trump.

            For me, these “platitudes” and “cliches” remind me of what life is about and what makes life worth living.

            Here’s another cliche for you — by their fruits you will know them. The blossoms are already on the Donald Trump tree. I think I’ve got a pretty good idea of the strange fruits they’ll produce.

            • Sure but you don't stop him by belittling his voters or giving up the fight

              I have yet to see a vision from any of you of how we actually beat Trump beyond doubling down on what didn’t work in 2016. The proof is on you, you avatars of reason who assumed demographics was destiny, trade didn’t matter, and data proves we are right to come up with an alternative to your failed status quo. Otherwise we will be stuck with this change for s lonng time and I don’t want to live another four years in this paradigm.

              But it’s the Democrats. We’ll nominate Setti in 18′ and Cory in 20′ and double down on milquetoast moderates who check off a diversity box and wonder why Republicans keep winning working class voters. We are living in extreme times and moderation in pursuit of justice is no virtue. We have to fight back and propose something bold and radical that’s an inclusive alternative to the radical vision too many Americans bought into because we offered them something stale.

              • I don't think you've heard me yet

                I think you’re still mired in fighting political battles when the rest of the America has left those behind. You are not going to win a pissing contest with Donald Trump, he will always piss harder and wetter than you.

                Donald Trump will step down in eight years (if he lasts that long). If need be, look beyond him — and strive mightily to not lose the entire nation in the meantime.

                The data DOES prove we are right. We can fight about it, and try to persuade the unpersuadeable, or we can act as if we are right and keep moving. The demographics are destiny — that’s one reason why the Trumpists are working so hard to suppress minority votes. The world IS global. If you think that “progressive” talk about nuking trade deals or sticking or collective head in the sand about the global economy is going to succeed in the long run, then you’re sadly mistaken.

                I’m not suggesting anything remotely like your second paragraph. Talking about “jobs”, isolationism, and sucking up to voters who already chose a misanthropic fraud and sex abuser is not, to my eyes, “bold and radical”.

                In my view, “bold and radical” is calling a spade a spade, cutting our losses, and building for the future. Trying to persuade Donald Trump voters that our way is better is a waste of time, resources, and psychic energy — life is too short.

                • We're misreading one another

                  I am literally calling for Democrats to move to the left on economics and foreign policy, not to the right. Because the voters perceived Trump to be to the left of Hillary on trade, Wall Street, globalization, cleaning corruption and war and didn’t care that he was far right on race or immigration. So we need to show them why we are their authentic champions and he is a charlatan.

                  Without the Hillary baggage* to distract the voters and the media, this will be a fairly easy case to make. He won’t drain the swamp and he won’t bring back the jobs. Hammer those points relentlessly. Christopher’s lightbulb finally went off and I hope yours can too. I am literally asking every candidate to embrace your rhetoric about the 99% v the 1%. That’s the only issue that matters: class. Everything else is a distraction from that fight.

                  *not arguing about Hillary or Bernie. Only saying a fresh face won’t have a record to defend or scandals invented and otherwise to derail the message

          • And what he thought stinks!

            There’s precious little logic behind liking a guy who supposedly says what he thinks if what he thinks has negative merit. That’s leaving aside the plethora of questions I have about whether he really thinks any of it given that for so much of what he says we have evidence that he once said the opposite.

      • The truly deplorable were already lost to us.

        The others could have easily stood up like WV Protestants in 1960 who voted for Catholic JFK anyway to prove they were NOT bigots. I don’t know why when Hillary said HALF Trump supporters were in the basket of deplorables more people rather than whining that she called them names didn’t more forceably say, “She’s not talking about me – I’m in the other half.” It IS holier-than-thou in 2016 to not hold certain attitudes and to call out those who do hold them, and I for one make no apologies for it.

        • Will you apologize when Trump is re-elected?

          Christopher before NH: Trump won’t beat Jeb because he’s a bigot
          Christopher after NH: Trump won’t win the primary cause he’s a bigot
          Christopher after SC: Jeb is out, but the GOP won’t vote for s bigot they will pick someone rational
          Christopher after NY primary: Bernie is too out there, we gotta pick someone electable or we risk electing a bigot; and remember Trump just won a republican primaries he won’t win a general since most Americans aren’t bigots
          Christopher after debates: Hillary knocked him out! Trade doesn’t matter and most people will vote against him cause he’s a bigot
          Christopher after election: man all the voters were bigots! I guess we just have to keep hoping they won’t be next time

          You consistently underestimated his strength of support, the rejection of the establishment in both parties and the fact that Trump was the lesser of two evils to a lot of people.

          Why is running a populist campaign supporting bigotry? It’s the only damn way we beat it! None of your predictions came true, none of your assertions were right, none of the data bore fruit, and we are living in a radically realigned body politic and have no time to waste responding and recalibrating too.

          • Nope, not me.

            I can’t speak for Christopher, but I’ll say that when Donald Trump is re-elected (and I think he will be if we keep trashing our fundamental principles), then I certainly will NOT apologize.

            I’ll say, instead, that I told you so.

            Half of Donald Trump’s supporters were and are truly deplorable. The other half lack a moral framework strong enough to see past the nose on their face. More than half of American voters see the situation with reasonable clarity. The overwhelming majority of those live together in regions of the country that see the situation with reasonable clarity. It is not accidental that those are the regions that lead the nation, and it is not accidental that those are the regions that fund — because of the very moral principles that “red” America shows such contempt for — the flood of tax subsidies that flow into red America.

            Nope. No apologies from me. We certainly are living in a radically realigned body politic — we’ve regressed decades, to the point where we have Democrats spouting off about “jobs that attract women” (and that just happen to pay less).

            Nope. No apologies.

            • What fundamental principles do I keep trashing?

              The only fundamental principles I see anyone trashing are our ancient principles to fight for good American jobs at fair wages for all Americans. Apparently articulating that makes me a conservative, and a racist one at that? Big news to FDR, Truman, JFK and any self respecting Democrat including Bill Clinton in the last century.

              We were for the common man long before we were for the man that transitioned into a woman*. It’s time we recover that tradition and recognize that it was the bedrock of the longest continual period of Democratic dominance in our history. My grandpa voted for Roosevelt because he gave him a job and his dignity back. That’s all these voters want-their dignity back. Continuing to demean them is not the way to show we listened to their anger and are ready to point them in a better direction.

              *i love trans rights, but fighting for union jobs has always been the hill the party died on. Until we sold out our people in the 80s and 90s to embrace Wall Street, free trade and gentrification.

              • For crying out loud...

                …nobody is calling you a racist, which you proved just nicely by invoking those other non-racist Dems! What put you in such a foul mood tonight? Your most recent comments on at least a couple of threads have had quite the sting to them:(

                • Since I feel like nobody is listening

                  I’m tired of relitigating the last primary, tired of talking about Hillary, and eager to regroup for the next fight. We will not do that until we are all on the same page about why we lost and how we win next time. And if I didn’t feel strongly about this I wouldn’t be so blunt and direct with people I normally agree with when I feel their heads are still in the sand.

                  • I'm not calling you a racist

                    I’m not calling you anything except “my friend”.

                    I’m inviting you step out of the political battle, at least from time to time, and look at the larger human picture. I’m reminding you that I lived through the election — twice — of Ronald Reagan, which was a body-blow like this one (though Donald Trump makes Ronald Reagan look like a statesman).

                    The “fundamental principles” that I refer to are values, like truth, fact, decency, fairness, integrity, courage, and so on. There will always be demagogues who betray those, and there will always be legions of men and women who for whatever reason are seduced by those demagogues.

                    It is sorely tempting to “beat them at their own game” — and I believe we must resist. When the terrorists behead a captive on live TV, our response must NOT be to do the same — because we are then like them.

                    Fight for economic justice? Of course. Do so by continuing the fight against paying women 70 cents on the dollar compared to men for the same work. Do so by bringing good schools and drinkable water to black communities in Michigan.

                    I don’t mind your bluntness, just as I hope and assume you don’t mind mine. I think that times like these demand that we do our best to contemplate all the opinions and alternatives we can find.

                    • I have a question or two....maybe three

                      If female laborers are getting paid 70 cents for doing the same job that a male laborer is getting paid one dollar, why are capitalists hiring men to do any jobs at all? I mean, if I am a business owner and I can cut my payroll by 30% simply by laying off all my male employees and hiring females, that ought to be an easy call. Based on this, male unemployment should be significantly higher than female unemployment, nationwide. But it seems that while higher, it’s only higher by a fraction. Why is that?

                      And, if women are paid “70 cents on the dollar compared to men for the same work”, are women being underpaid or are men being overpaid? Should we pay women more or should we pay men less to eliminate this issue?

                      Finally, if we are to pay women more, where does that 30 cents come from?

                    • Why ask me?

                      I guess that in your world, gender-based wage discrimination doesn’t exist.

                      Here’s my suggestion to you: go talk to some women and ask them. Then LISTEN. As in open your ears, stop arguing, stop defending, and LISTEN.

                    • I'm asking you because

                      so many Democrats toss this slogan out there without thinking about it, how it affects people, if it does at all.

                      I guess that in your world, gender-based wage discrimination doesn’t exist.

                      Sure, and men with Asian heritage make more then us white guys.

                      $3 an hour more, on average.

                      We must put a stop to that too, no? If not, why not?

                    • Simple Question

                      Do you think that men and women are paid the same amount for the same work?

                    • In every job I've ever had

                      Women have made the same as me. I hear that from lots of guys. It’s a slogan to stir up people. Sure, just shout out “RACISM” or “SEXISM” …instead of offering anything of substance.

                    • Fact-based answers

                      The research supporting this is readily accessible to anyone who chooses to look. Here are some examples found from Google in thirty seconds (enter the following search text: gender based wage gap massachusetts data).

                      Massachusetts Women and the Wage Gap, from April 2016.

                      Graduation to a Pay Gap, from March of 2013.

                      The Gender Wage Gap: 2015; Annual Earnings Differences by Gender, Race, and Ethnicity (free download required).

                      The substance is all around you. Your own experience is not data. Perhaps if you weren’t shouting so much yourself, you might hear more.

                    • What do you propose to do about it?

                      Yes, we all know that occupations that females are attracted to pay less than occupations that males are attracted to. Yes, we know that laborers with more education earn more than laborers with less education.

                      This is good stuff to get the female vote if you’re a Democrat running for office. It makes for good headlines. But that’s about it. Nothing changes.

                      Even in Blue Massachusetts, nothing changes. The wealth divide widens, poverty increases, and nothing changes.

                      I hear you shouting about it. “SEXISM”!!!!!

                      And nothing ever changes.

                      My hunch is that nothing changes because too many Democrats are afraid to bite the hand that feeds them. And the hand that feeds them is the the same hand that has its finger of the wage scales.

                    • The first step...

                      is to admit that it occurs. Nothing will change if we don’t think it’s a problem:

                      In every job I’ve ever had(0+ / 1-) View voters
                      Women have made the same as me. I hear that from lots of guys. It’s a slogan to stir up people. Sure, just shout out “RACISM” or “SEXISM” …instead of offering anything of substance.

                    • I did not say it does not happen

                      I am saying that it’s not as cut and dry as the statement suggests.

                      It also fails to answer the many questions I keep asking.

                      Should we pay women more or should we pay men less to eliminate this issue?

                      If we are to pay women more, where does that 30 cents come from?

                      If a business owner can cut my payroll by 30% simply by laying off all male employees and hiring females, why don’t we actually see more of this?

                    • Many women work in minimum wage jobs

                      …and yet the candidate we nominated balked at the idea of a $15 minimum wage….and we had the choice of a candidate was ready to push for $15 and we passed on him.

                      We’re a lot of talk, aren’t we?

                    • You implied it doesn't happen

                      You can’t make statements like…

                      In every job I’ve ever had(0+ / 1-) View voters
                      Women have made the same as me. I hear that from lots of guys. It’s a slogan to stir up people. Sure, just shout out “RACISM” or “SEXISM” …instead of offering anything of substance.

                      And then claim you “did not say it doesn’t happen”.

                      Do you support a $15 Minimum Wage?

                      If you do, where will that money come from?

                      There is the answer as to where the differential to make up for the gender based pay gap will come from.

                    • I support higher wages for labor - all labor

                      And if you need to know what “all labor means”, it means women labor, men labor, GLBT labor, Latino labor, minority labor, all the subdivisions that you and yours deem so necessary….

                      And I support tax increases on the wealthy to pay for it. If ONLY we had a candidate to run on that this time around……gee, if only.

                      But shit, our party attacked him as a “single issue candidate” and we ran with someone who could pepper a stump speech with words like “equal pay” and “glass ceiling”….and get shellacked on election day.

                      A gender based pay gap would be narrowed by many things, including a candidate who did not look down on parents who decide to stay home and raise a family.

                    • Those variables are controlled for.

                      That accounts for some, but not all, of the aggregate pay gap between the genders. I used to have some of the same questions, and yes there are jobs, including I believe all the ones I have held, where there is no difference, but I have since been shown the data which accounts for that.

                    • @ What do you propose

                      Not surprisingly, it’s clear that you didn’t bother to read any of the cited material.

                      See, you don’t appear to be interesting in learning anything. You appear to care only about repeating your biases and prejudices, over and over and over and over and over again. One consequence of that behavior is that nothing will ever change until you get hit by the oncoming train whose headlight you thought was the “light at the end of the tunnel”.

                      Gender-based wage discrimination is real and pervasive whether or not you admit it. The prejudices you so loudly express here (“Occupations that females are attracted to”? Really? Jeesh) are a significant part of its cause. When you write sexist tripe like that, it is YOU that is standing on the damn scale.

                      One of things you continue to seem blind to is the yeoman service you provide The Man while you do that.

                    • I read it

                      And it offers NO answers. You tell me it’s hot outside and I ask you what we can do about it….and you show me the weather report.

                      I’d love to learn what to do about it. You just seem to enjoy shouting about it. Again, you and other Democrats have painted yourselves into a corner. You cannot attack the source because the source feeds the candidates that you admire.

              • Sorry, i meant to upgrade, not downgrade what you wrote.

                My thumb is too big for this ipad mini)))

          • I admit my predictions tanked this year.

            But I absolutely will not concede that I was wrong on the merits. Plus they were absolutely rational predictions given historic examples and the data we had. Running a populist campaign is absolutely not supporting bigotry – Sanders showed that. Plenty of Americans showed their true colors and plenty of others looked the other way – and I am ROYALLY TICKED at my country for it – but the reason I harp on actual numbers (such as HRC’s popular vote advantage) is because if anything it’s the only thing keeping ME sane at this point.

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