On the decisive differences between Clinton and Obama’s campaigns

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“ In 2012, 57% of millennials said that Obama’s policies would be “good for people like me,” compared to only 38% in 2016 saying the same about Clinton’s policies. According to the same research, Democratic messaging centered too much around personality and Trump’s unfitness for office, rather than on how Democrats would improve the lives of young voters ”

Sean McElwee & Causten Rodriguez-Wollerman, ‘Democrats need to win over young voters. Here’s how they can do that’, The Guardian

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On the mainstream dislike of old-style socialism and the collapse of centrism in the UK

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“ The Guardian is a big influence, and it has to be said that both its comment writers and its news editorial stance have been about as pro-Corbyn as the New York Times was pro–Bernie Sanders — that is, not at all. And for the same reasons. These are the liberal elitists. It’s people who don’t like old-style socialism. All the identity politics around Corbyn, they’re different than the ones around Sanders, but they were there. Lots of mainstream feminists don’t like Corbyn. In the end, Corbyn has proved you can run a traditional left campaign and energize young people. The other possibility is so dire — a right-wing Conservative and racist UKIP alliance government. The Guardian, which I write for, has had this hope that some centrist party would emerge, a bit like Emmanuel Macron in Paris, or like the Clintonite Democrats. But that kind of politics has collapsed in Britain, and the Liberal Democrats, who are the small third party here, just have really not done anything ”

Paul Mason, ‘The Movement in Corbyn’s Wake’, Jacobin Magazine

On the deceptive Clinton resistance to Trump

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“ Despite claiming the banner of ‘the resistance’, it’s these neoliberal cronies who enable Trump. They lend their services to the same politicians who created the socioeconomic environment that birthed Trump. They move in elite Beltway social circles, only interacting with working-class people during photo ops. They’re incapable of stanching the bleeding from the wounds inflicted by the Trump administration and its congressional allies. Clinton’s resistance is anti-democratic: it’s about giving millions of dollars to other people who already have millions of dollars, all because they hobnob together at the same cocktail parties and adhere to the same arbitrary norms of civility ”

Alex Press, ‘Still Not an Activist’, Jacobin Magazine

 

On why if Macron loses, it will be his fault, not Melenchon’s

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“ For some Macron is a most unbearable turmoil of Le Pen’s victory, for others he’s not. If Macron was a bit more tolerable for them, the first would perhaps vote for it, and if Le Pen was less frightening for them, perhaps the latter would not vote for Macron to avoid her. In short, there is no great principle, nor universal rule: every vote has a part of conviction and a part of sacrifice and doubt, and each weighs the two parts with its meter, not with that of the others. Those who do not want to vote Macron obviously ‘knows how to distinguish between Macron and Le Pen,’ like those who deny dinner because they only have a worm dish or plum covered with mold; they see the difference between worms and a plum. To attribute to any leftist who does not want to vote for Macron a whimsical infantile selfishness is just as childish, supposedly, and incapable of sensitivity to the reflections and doubts of others: and the history of the elections is always made of contexts such as this (Trump also won because many Sanders voters did not vote for Clinton, and they have widely explained the reasons, the 5 Star Movement will also win thanks to those who would not vote for Renzi, etc. […]) ”

Translated from Italian.

Luca Sofri, ‘Turarsi il nez’, Wittgenstein

On the French elections contradictions and confusion

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“ Besides undermining Hamon’s chances to win, the crippling efforts by prominent figures of the PS revealed the rotten core of the party apparatus. As in the case of the Democratic contest between Sanders and Clinton in the US, the attempts to obstruct an even moderately left-wing candidate like Hamon to campaign illustrated the extent to which the party does not tolerate any deviance from its new liberal, pro-business, anti-social character (…) Macron represents everything that gave rise to the FN in the first place. In this sense, in the 2nd round French voters are called to choose, as in the 2016 US presidential elections, between proto-fascism and what fuels fascism. The extreme centre and the xenophobic right feed off each other in a toxic, dangerous cycle. They are two sides of the same coin. Although barring the way to the FN in the 7th of May is the most sensible thing to do in the short term, we must have no illusions: Macron and what he represents are part of the problem as much as the FN and the far right across Europe ”

Tommaso Segantini, ‘Six considerations on the French elections’, Tommaso Segantini Blog

On the futile Democratic Party’s resistance to President Trump

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” Hillary should have done more than just beat Trump – she should have destroyed him. He was one of the worst Republican candidates in decades. He was and remains unpopular. Yet Hillary stood for and campaigned for nothing but fear; her primary selling point was ‘I’m not the other one’ (…) Our unwillingness to admit our own weakness is the flip side of not having a clear set of principles that can serve as the basis for a mass movement. Instead, we give ourselves the appearance of unity and purpose by resisting evil and by taking our collective ‘No’ out into the streets. We find comfort in knowing that we are not them, that at least we are doing something ”

Alex Gourevitch, ‘Beyond Resistance’, Jacobin Magazine