Arizona Eagletarian

Arizona Eagletarian

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Guess what... politics is conflict. Buckle up because it's not going to let up until November.

The Nevada Democratic caucuses are in the books. Like in Iowa, the process was rife with conflict and chaos. One post from a group on Facebook,
My parents waited 4 hours to vote in Nevada today. They explained to me how unorganized and chaotic it was to vote. They were moved around from one room to another. They were told to stand and wait in one line and after waiting over an hour they were told to move to another line 😨. There wasn't enough staff to help with the voting process. One woman went around with an envelope pressuring people to donate cash for the Clinton campaign while people stood in line to vote, another woman was screaming at people because she was angry that people were voting for Bernie. People should not be harassed while trying to vote, that is ridiculous. My parents indicated the process of voting today was "exhausting" 😥 they arrived around 10:05 am to vote and were done around 2:15 pm. Both my parents are 70 years old, so I am just grateful they stuck with it and voted. ‪#‎LatinosforBernie‬
Of course, this is now third hand and not something I can verify. Similarly, Hispanic activist icon Dolores Huerta, a Hillary Clinton supporter and endorser, reported -- and the Washington Post and Huffington Post (and other news websites) dutifully relayed to their readers -- a dubious concern.

Huerta claimed that Sanders supporters shouted her down,
Dolores Huerta, a civil rights leader who has endorsed Hillary Clinton, said Saturday that Bernie Sanders supporters shouted her down when she tried to offer Spanish-language translations at a Las Vegas caucus location -- including by chanting "English-only" -- ahead of Clinton's win in the Nevada Democratic caucuses.
"Shouting 'English-only' -- that is completely against the spirit of everything that we're working for," Huerta told The Huffington Post in a phone interview.
Actress America Ferrera, also there to support Clinton, tweeted about the incident, which they said took place at a caucus location in Harrah's Las Vegas Hotel and Casino.
Here's a video of the incident.




Both the Huff Post and WaPo stories brazenly slant this to be about Sanders supporters conduct. By the way, Snopes investigated and declared Huerta's allegations false. From WaPo,
Dolores Huerta says she was shouted down with ‘English-only’ chants from a Sanders crowd
With primary season in full swing, political news has begun to settle into some expected patterns. The assumption is that most of the big surprises that remain will come from voters, delegate counts and perhaps some unforeseeable candidate scandal.
To that end, there are plenty of stories that put Republican Donald Trump's supporters on record as raucous, not ashamed to use their fists, spit and do other not-so-nice things to  their political opponents.
The most vehement supporters of Democratic Party contender Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) frequently come in for some reasonable comparisons, even if they insist that they are just too progressive for Trump supporter-style antics.
Well, something just happened in Las Vegas that might really and truly challenge that. Dolores Huerta, longtime civil rights and farm-labor activist as well as a confidant of the late Cesar Chavez,  tweeted this Saturday night from a Nevada caucus location:
— Dolores Huerta (@DoloresHuerta) February 20, 2016 
How easy is it to spot the overt bias? Now, I'm not buying that Sanders' supporters are like Trump's. But billionaire Jeff Bezos' (Amazon.com entrepreneur) new toy, the Washington Post, appears to be trying to paint populism as detrimental to our country and its political processes.

Wouldn't it seem at least as reasonable to approach the story from the angle that the caucus process, this year especially, is somehow deficient? In Iowa and now in Nevada, moderators or those conducting the events seem to have been woefully unprepared.

If reporters weren't simply trying to portray populists as thugs, there are several questions they could have asked. For starters, why was Huerta there in the first place? The answer to that appears to be as an official observer for the Clinton campaign.

How exactly is an observer, who was known to be there on behalf of one of the campaigns, and probably was only lawfully allowed to watch and listen (eyes and ears, but not mouth) to even be allowed on the stage to offer translation services in the first place?

How and why would registered voters who recognized (which the moderator clearly didn't) be castigated for speaking up for their lawful rights to a fair vote?

Why do we allow corporate media to define the incident in the first place?

In the meantime, Hillary's campaign and supporters continue to make hay by deceptively painting Sanders supporters as an unruly mob.

Despite the false perception of racism among Bernie Sanders supporters, the Vermont senator still ended up winning the Latino vote by a 53-47 margin, according to entrance polls. This shatters the myth of Sanders’ limited viability among people of color, showing that the surging campaign is appealing to more than just white voters.
Neither Dolores Huerta nor America Ferrera responded to US Uncut‘s requests for comment.
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Longtime Arizona Eagletarian readers will remember that politics is conflict. That was a major theme of the independent redistricting process that got into full swing in 2011. It was rife with raucous public hearings followed by still (in 2016) ongoing litigation. The level of conflict presenting in caucus states should not really be so shocking. 

A project of the University of Colorado, Beyond Intractability, has an essay that says this,
Politics are among the most ancient, enduring, and consequential sources of conflict, as they determine how power will be distributed among people, including over life and death, wealth and poverty, independence and obedience. Conflicts concerning these issues have shaped the ways we have interacted as a species over the course of centuries. At their core, as Hannah Arendt wrote, is the conflict that, "from the beginning of our history has determined the very existence of politics: the cause of freedom versus tyranny."
Freedom and tyranny are factors not only in conflicts between minorities and nation states, but also in small, everyday conflicts between parents and teenagers, managers and employees, governments and citizens, and wherever power is distributed unequally. If we define political conflicts as those arising out of or challenging an uneven distribution of power relational, religious, and cultural power, it is clear that politics happens everywhere. [...]
Journalist H. L. Mencken wrote, decades before September 11, that "The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace in a continual state of alarm (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing them with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary." 
I would pose to you now, that if Hillary Clinton is so damn qualified to lead the United States, why the hell is she so inept at campaigning without having to resort to inciting raucous caucuses and inventing imaginary hobgoblins to deceptively paint Sanders and his supporters as the enemy?

Do we REALLY want to give her the keys to the nuclear firing codes? Methinks she's more like Dr. Strangelove than Gandhi.

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As an aside, don't forget that Secretary of State George Orwell, aka Michele Reagan, has already announced intent to eliminate state/county run Presidential Preference Elections (for 2020). That would put Arizona potentially in the same chaotic dilemma that we've seen this year in Iowa and Nevada.

Is that what you want?  Speak up. Rise UP! And make sure you and your friends are registered to vote (Democrat, Republican or Green... if you want to vote in this year's Presidential Preference Election on March 22nd) by midnight Monday. That can be accomplished online at servicearizona.com

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