The Democratic Debate

Same topic, different views

By Joe Carbonari and Tim Baldwin

By Joe Carbonari

I think that the Democratic debate was a game changer. Prior to the debate, Hillary Clinton was looking weak, potentially beatable, Joe Biden was gaining strength, and Bernie Sanders was stirring the pot, speaking to the heart and soul of the party’s base, often sounding reasonable.

Bernie turned the tide when he said, directly to Hillary, that he was tired of hearing about her “darn” emails, that there were more important issues to discuss. It was a thank-you-Jesus moment that she took as such. She reflexively dropped her script and reverted to herself.

She morphed into the Hillary that was confident, forceful, and safe. She knows the system. She has the knowledge, the experience, and the advisors. She was back, and she appeared ready.

That suggests that Joe Biden might best be served by biding his time. He can wait out this week’s Benghazi questioning to see how she does. He gets free publicity while pacing safely in the wings, looks good, and takes very little flack.

Additionally, Bernie Sanders advanced his cause: a better society. He spoke well and directly. He plays to the discontent and to the needs of the democratic base. He energizes it, he expands it, and he will help turnout.

He will also help advance the debate within our society. Who’s running the show? Who benefits? What’s fair? How do “we” move ahead again? This is good.

Hillary’s back on the wall. Biden awaits a fall. Sanders seems a stretch too far. Your guess?

By Tim Baldwin

In the recent Democratic debates, Bernie Sanders fought for socialist democratic ideals and Hillary Clinton tried not to make herself look worse than how people already perceive her. The remaining candidates do not appear strong enough to overcome Clinton and Sanders’ popularity.

Bernie is the most intriguing of them. He fights against political corruption, strongly opposes the unholy alliances of global corporations and government, and decries how foreign and global monies corrupt the democratic process. This is an appealing message.

Politics is a continual experiment of human nature. No one formula fits all people and nations for all times. Circumstances, culture, and environment affect what political models work best. This is why Thomas Jefferson argued for a constitutional convention to be held every 20 years.

Many conservatives overly criticize Bernie for being a socialist democrat, but world history and politic show that not all socialist states are evil, especially non-Marxist/Leninist socialism. Some have liberty and promote the general welfare. How those systems work well is a matter of scientific study, which all ardent students of politics should consider and acknowledge.

While America has adopted some aspects of socialism in form, our structure remains a democratic republic. Instead of changing the structure, most Americans focus on changing statutes through Congress. As frustrating as that may be for political parties, few seem willing to make fundamental changes through a constitutional amendment, whether to bring America back to smaller republics or to create Bernie’s socialist state.

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