Wednesday, May 6, 2015
Minority Republicans, Carlo Fiorina and Ben Carson, declaring candidacy for 2016 White House Race: where did the Republican majority failed to communicate the Mundane?
Keywords or terms: Carol Fiorina; Ben Carson; Minority Republicans; State of Texas; Paranoia; Presidential Campaign; Republican Party; Extremism; Racism and narrowed vision of the extreme right; White Anglo-Saxon Male Privileges and the Republican Party; National American Free Trade Agreement; Immigration Reform and Control Act; Stumbling blocks; and American Political Development
The instrument of collective authority and accountability are often essential to a thriving democracy. If residents of the State of Texas believe that routine military exercise and training are precursors to declaration of martial laws and takeover of the State of Texas by the Federal Government, then we need to redefine collective authority and accountability in the context of our democracy to all Americans, no matter where they reside in the union. Further, if the narrow vision of the extreme right have exposed more Americans to doubt the authenticity and purpose of routine military administrative actions or permeated to a consciousness level or psyche of paranoia in the State of Texas, it is time to revisit definition of powers at the federal, state and local government as they relate to governance in our democracy. In addition, if the governor of the State of Texas is unable to shed more light on what the military communicated with his office regarding the on-going military exercise, then the misrepresentation of the ongoing exercise by anyone, for whatever reasons, must be a thing of concern for all Americans.
Could the current Republican propaganda on multiple far-right media outlet or platforms, be it on FOXNEWS or other far-right radio outlets, degenerating to intractable ignorance in the Texan populace; or, a case of misguided misinformation floating around the state as gospel truth? Could the structure of governance in Texas Assembly be meeting new challenges, including unfounded rumors mongering designed to cause disarray and misdirection during a time of relative peace in America? Is there an effort to weaken the credibility of the federal government, just because of unfounded grievances against the current occupant of the White House and President of the United States by a few anarchist or American Taliban? Could Texas Governor Greg Abbot activation of Texas State Guard to monitor US Military exercise and Senator Cruz’s quick missive to Pentagon be construed as the height of ridiculousness or unconsciousness? These are rather pertinent questions that must be explored; however, for more juicy stuff, I’ll like you to reflect on the announcement this week, that two minority Republicans, minority in the context that their sexuality and race is inimical to their self-identified political association or ambition; they are Republicans. Who? What?
Yes, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina and Neurosurgeon Ben Carson, declared their candidacies for the 2016 White House race early this week. The first on ABC Good Morning show and the latter, on a local Ohio Television Station, WKRC-TV. The declarations of both candidates and their chances of ever being the Republican party flag bearer, is as remote as Texas succeeding from the Union and the Pope getting wedded to a beautiful convent nun, independently or simultaneously. Not that both events could not occur; however, the chances of either taking place is as remote as being stricken by a lightning thunder on an early frigid winter morning. You see, these two candidates are talking and campaigning to a base that, by choice, have already ruled minorities or females as incapable of holding the mantle of leadership in their party. Forget the lofty idea of diversity in the party, or bigger tent, metamorphosing around the Grand Old party. The truth is “it ain’t ganna happen!”
With a twitter announcement of New Possibilities and Real Leadership, the $21.4 million golden parachute former Hewlett-Packard CEO, sixty-year-old college dropout, with a ghost written book in her kitty, declared her candidacy, with some choice words for the former US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. If a former CEO, who laid off over 30,000 Americans from work because of her ambitious acquisition of a competitor, Compaq Computer; a gross mistake, if not felonious executive decision, because she got paid off to get rid of her in the office, wants to become the President of the United States, then anything is possible in America. The tax dodgers, the fascist anarchists, the Cuban-American Ambassador of a tax dodger and the bare-knuckled bridge-gate godfather of New Jersey, all have a place here. Welcome to the America of all possibilities!
He is here, the “smartest” brown-skinned former neurosurgeon from Baltimore, Ben Carson. The candidate who wants to undo the glorious effort of President Barack Obama, the Affordable Care Act. With Carson, big government is going to be a thing of the past, a neophyte who acknowledges he is never going to be politically correct, never going to be politically expedient, wants to parlay his academic success and modern-day speaking evangelism for a ride to 1800 Pennsylvania Avenue. His ambition is as huge as the globe; however, the chances are as slim as the spec of a needle’s eye. The nationally acclaimed Republican with “preponderance” support from the tea party wing of the Republican Party, is set to get rid of social programs that create dependency. It isn’t that Dr. Ben Carson could not be a formidable candidate; it is his stars that is against him. “He ain’t just got the zing with the establishment Republican Party, the White Anglo-Saxon male voters that seem to hold the power in the Republican Party of today.”
While both CEO Carly Fiorina and Neurosurgeon Ben Carson are the first female and black to indicate interest in the 2016 contest for the White House, the perception that they both bring diversity to the Republican party fray of candidates, is rather mundane and essentially, a none starter. Let’s debate Racism and Sexism in the next few paragraphs and you’ll understand why the Diversity Candidacy of the CEO and Neurosurgeon are non-starters in current day Republican Party.
To explore these two hot topics, I will default to the subject of immigration, one of the pending issues that will come up in the presidential debates in the 2016 White House Race. The unattended consequence of the unresolved national immigration issue probably has its roots in racism; if not sexism. Regardless of what any Congressional Republican may say, the effort to resolve this problem at the national level, has been fraught with right wing hardliner’s perception of what a liberalized immigration system will mean. The fact that the current occupant of the White House, President Obama, had resorted to using executive powers to move the debate ahead, is one very important reason, why many White Anglo-Saxon, the rich base of the Republican Party, will fight tooth and nail, against a minority, female or male, occupying the White House oval office in 2016.
Advocates of national immigration reform, documented several instances of racist and discriminating undertones that the effort at reforming America’s immigration had taken, most recently. Defenders of minorities interests, Latinos and many under-represented groups, some undocumented and living amongst us, established one fact, it is not the dependence or perceived consequence of the 1993 National American Free Trade Agreement or the debacle of the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act that are the stumbling blocks to resolution of this problem, it is the inherent belief among many in the Republican Party, that a new reform is unfeasible, because the potential beneficiaries of the reform are too dependent on social welfare programs and crime. Contrary to what national statistics say, the predominate movers and shakers in the Republican party, are not about to welcome new social welfare programs’ dependents’, when they are still working overtime and overdrive to win-off dependent citizen minorities, including the poor and elderly, from these social welfare programs.
CEO Carly Fiorina and Neurosurgeon Ben Carson will have to go the length of signing an undertaker statement with the preponderance group in the Republican Party, the White Anglo-Saxon Male, vowing never to sign into law, congressional legislation that regularizes twelve million undocumented US immigrants, for them to get their vote. Organized struggle and activism by interest groups within a party, often have a sway, in who ultimately become the party’s flag bearer. No one is doubting the sincerity of the Republican Party to empower the minorities amongst them; however, the concept of diversity is relatively new to the party; and, it is going to take more time for the party to measure up to the big-tent philosophy that it has often longed for, since a realization of the majority-minority shift in population dynamics; and the likely trending, not certain as of date, that it is probably the burgeoning minority populations in America that are more likely to determine who ends up in the White House, in the near future. This very real but difficult fact to accept is probably, why a minority Republican candidate stands rather slim chance, ending up as the party’s flag bearer in general election.
In entirety, the notion that a minority will end up lording it over the White-Anglo Saxon male is so tormenting and excruciating, some of them will hardly acknowledge the present occupant of the White House, twice-elected in general elections, as the President of the United States. But alongside this, is the fear of dealing with a female power, the testosterone raising in the male specie and the religious puritan upbringing of many White Republican Anglo-Saxons, make it rather unsettling, to have a female in the helms of affairs of this nation. To accept a female Republican flag bearer, is to reduce somewhat in size the ego of the White-Anglo Saxon, that have dominated the flag bearer nominees; and hence, the President of the United States in the past two centuries. However, it is even more important to recognize that the establishment Republican, feels somewhat of a threat at this time, with the excellence in governance and successes of the forty-forth President of the United States, President Barack Hussein Obama.
In terms of overall chances, the scale of preference is still with the White Anglo-Saxon male wielding the power of office of the presidency. To say that this is not the preference of the establishment Republicans, is to ignore the strength of tradition – or accept a minority male as an award winning neurosurgeon or a female CEO becoming the President of the United States. To repeat, campaign teams of Fiorina or Carson, must come up with the ingenuity of crafting their message(s), that they re-assure the predominant Republican Anglo-Saxon White male, that he will not be losing his current privileges; and or, eroding his power any further in the party’s stratosphere and national political arrangement or discuss. If either is going to end up as the Republican Party flag bearer, a sense of present power to chart the future of the Republican Party must be negotiable; however, except one is living in illusion, the current White Anglo-Saxon male is hardly ready to subject himself to this perceived humiliation. One will like to believe that these apprehensions are not true, that all races and sexes within the Republican Party are treated equitable; however, the size of the sacrifice that the candidacy of Fiorina or Carson is calling the establishment Republican White Anglo-Saxon male to make or bear is probably too much at this time of America’s political development.
Friday, May 1, 2015
The Myth about Bernie Sanders’ Versus Hillary Clinton’s 2016 Presidential Candidacies: Listening across Ideologies?
Keywords and Terms: Candidate Bernie Sanders; Candidate Hillary Clinton; Elizabeth Warren; Martin O’Malley; Presidential Campaigns; Leftist ideology; Progressive Values; Trans-Pacific Trade Pact; Overhauling Tax Rules and Regulations; Climate Change Issues; Social Security Expansion; Citizen United; Older population and working poor; party-level campaigns; Intra-Party Competition; Wage-Disparity; China; Mexico; and, America’s Economic Security
For those who likened Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders’ announcement of his 2016 run for the White House as a volcanic eruption within the Democratic Party or among progressives, it may be time to think again. For progressives, it is more like a call to listen across ideological lines regarding economic and social issues that continue to divide us. The issues of income inequality, racial opportunity inequality, climate change, over-burdening taxation regulations, expansive and expanding gaps in socio-economic indicators, that continue to befoul the dynamic and bluntly spoken Independent Senator from Vermont, are genuine; and for all intense and purposes, are reasons why Bernie Sander’s candidacy cannot be written-off; and, roars up against the establishment candidacy of Secretary Hillary Clinton.
Moreover, it is probably in the overall interest of all Americans that Sanders’ candidacy is calling for the woman in the mirror, the establishment candidate, to reflect once again. While Sanders’ Candidacy is perceived in some quarters as having the potential of drawing Hillary Rodham Clinton’s candidacy towards the left, there are no direct correlation to this inclination; rather, it is an opportunity for Democrats to look at those issues that seem to be papered over among progressives, in the national discuss, as we progress towards the 2016 nomination. Many leftist believe, while Republicans do not have answers to many of these problems, or are refusing to acknowledge them, there is a vacuum, a paucity, in communication even among progressives regarding the urgency or attention these problems deserve on the national stage. To some leftists, there is hardly anything wrong with an insurgent democratic candidacy; and better yet, there is hardly anything unappreciated of a candidate who believes that social security must be expanded and taxation of the wealthy is in order, to ameliorate poverty among the working poor, women and elderly.
Senator Bernie Sanders’ candidacy for the 2016 Presidential Campaign, launched on Wednesday, April 29th , in the Capitol, based on a populist income inequality platform, wants to thwart the Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership, overhaul tax regulations and rules that allow American Companies to invest overseas, draw attention to Climate Change issues, and address the Citizen United Ruling from US Supreme Court. A self-described Democratic Socialist, who believes in standing up for the middle income earners in America, is tired of American Corporations shifting jobs overseas in order to dodge paying IRS taxes. Acknowledging that it may take close to a billion dollar to win a general election, a privilege that his candidacy cannot amass, Senator Sanders agrees that, it is probably an uphill battle and improbability to launch a credible national campaign to topple a candidate financed by the enormous wealth of donors as the Koch Brothers in the Republican Party.
It is whimsical, if not awkward and cryptic, to assume that a candidacy like that of Sanders’ may win a general election in America of today; however, for a candidate who Associated Press reported as saying, he is ensuring that someone in the race is holding Clinton’s feet to the fire, on those issues that are important to the left, what are few banters or fights between two heavy weights in a family. Americans, progressives inclusive, must recognize that fierce interparty competitiveness would only enhance the chances of the party’s flag bearer come a national contest, not diminish it. For the candidate, who admonishes himself for running outside the two-party political system and prevailing over Democrats and Republicans in Vermont’s Senatorial races, no one must think his candidacy is inconsequential.
A reflection on how far an insurgency candidacy like Bernie Sander’s will last, can be garnered from the experience of Jack Kemp’s or Jean Kirkpatrick’s run for the Republican nomination in the 1984 White House race. Ronald Reagan was the assured establishment candidate for the Republican nomination, during the final balloting exercise however, candidates Jack Kemp and Jean Kirkpatrick still sustained one vote a piece, while Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush howled away two thousand two hundred and thirty one votes. Establishment supporters of Secretary Hillary Clinton’s candidacy for 2016 probably and tentatively constitute over ninety percent of Democratic delegates; however, there is room for Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren or Martin O’Malley to wiggle one or two ballots at the end of the exercise. Yes, Hillary Clinton like Ronald Reagan, will still carry the day; however, they both wouldn't, without a fight from other promising and astute candidates. The party-level campaign for nomination, is often an opportunity to give a voice to the voiceless, an opportunity to have democracy at play, where candidates, who for any other reasons of handicap, are able to make their point and have their say, in an often cut-throat, winner takes all competition, that is characteristic of the party nomination process.
For example, the morning after the party nomination process, the looser often seeks comfort in the fact that he or she gave it his or her best. There is often some sense of accomplishment at that point, at least the flag bearer does not see himself or herself as winning the nomination on a platter of gold. Subtle rebellion within the party often subside after the nomination process and the flag bearer wins new converts, who may have wished alternative candidate to be the flag bearer. Imagine what this could do for pressure groups within the Democratic Party seeking support for women health initiatives like quality maternity care, preventive health services, birth control insurance coverage and an emergency rape kit in all hospitals. If Hillary Clinton is temperate in supporting these initiatives, so as not to be seen as deferring to women issues on a national platform, or if she chooses to be more centrist in order to win national votes, the candidacy of Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren or Martin O’Malley may force her to negotiate on what goes on the party’s national platform. This is what grassroots democracy is all about.
Insurgent candidacy forces the party nominee to respect the competition’s ideals, even if she or he despises the competition that leads to victory. She or he may not want to be bothered by the theatrics that involve running against other candidates that may share some of her inherent values within the party; however, the competition and associated press appearances, newspaper interviews, talk shows appearances and intra-party debates that are seen on the television at the individual party level, seem often to embolden the party’s eventual nominee, and prepare her or him for the national contest against the opposing national party’s candidate. The usual premonition that intra-party’s competition bloodies the eventual party nominee, while may be true for some candidates, it has often prepared others better to withstand the brutal and challenging inter-party competition on the general election day.
“Bernie-Sanderism’ then, is an act of defiance, a candidacy thumbing its nose at the establishment candidate, one billed on leftist principles, that the Brooklyn-born Senator from Vermont, can take home as a badge of honor. The seventy-three year-old, second term senator can pride himself, even if he loses to Secretary Clinton, and say, ‘You see, my candidacy was built on solid Social Democratic principles one that puts the American workers, women, the poor and elderly on center-stage to ask pertinent questions as: 1) Are you on the side of working families who suffer as a result of disastrous trade agreements that often off-shore American jobs to China or Mexico? 2) Is there still room for the middle class in this widening income disparity war? 3) How many labor and tax laws are still enforceable in America and is the party’s flag bearer ready to see that enforcement of labor and tax laws are essential to combating the growing income inequality in America? 4) Will evolving understanding of the impact of Citizen United Ruling from US Supreme Court help the public see where this is taking our Democracy? And, 5) are Conceptual uncertainties tarnishing the debate over America’s Economic Security?
If it is plausible to argue that Bernie-Sanders’ candidacy will lead to inexorable change in the platform of the eventual nominee of the Democratic Party, it is possible to advance the thesis that listening across ideological lines, is essential for addressing the mammoth issues or problems facing America today. Modest assumption that the United States Congress is expected to work more cooperatively, once the race issue is extricated from consideration of the occupant of the White House, may gain greater credulity, if one buys into the argument that the present day dysfunction in US Congress may be adduced to the race of the current occupant of the White House. However, many progressives know that this is not true, America is a nation of complex incongruences that continue to evolve and often impacting attitudes and shaping the actual experience of resolving political, economic and social problems. That is why, it is important that each of the major political party has contestants vying for the status of the flag bearer, not just one, pre-ordained candidate, as is the case with the 2016 Democratic Party.
With the entry of Senator Bernie Sander into the Democratic Party nomination process, it is probably safe to conclude that the debate(s) for the party’s flag bearer position will take a turn for the better. Ideological and Philosophical issues will be trashed out at the party level, so also, will ideological-philosophical power-sharing, strengthen the eventual party’s nominee. Shaping and changing the party’s platform to accommodate plurality of all constituencies, will assist Democrats to better manage or fight back interruptions from Republican Party. Can party-level insurgency resolve the old-age question: giving everyone an equal chance of being heard and represented may ultimately control the influence of money in party politics? Can constructive and effective engagement within party, strengthen the party’s chances in the general elections? These are important questions which the entry of the Independent Vermont Senator into the Democratic Party Presidential nomination race, is about to answer.