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News: Election 2016 predictions are now open!.

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276  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: PBS Milwaukee, WI Democratic debate @9pm ET **live commentary thread** on: February 11, 2016, 09:19:41 pm
Bernie: "We gotta fight for universal healthcare!"
Hillary: "Eh, I'm done fighting."
277  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: PBS Milwaukee, WI Democratic debate @9pm ET **live commentary thread** on: February 11, 2016, 09:10:04 pm
Hillary in full-on 2008 Mode already.
278  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Bernie could win New York on: February 11, 2016, 08:43:10 pm
Clinton has the best chance win NY today, but it's a long way till April.
279  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Gilmore might drop out soon on: February 11, 2016, 04:45:03 pm
Kasich/Gilmore 2016?
280  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Superdelegates rig election for Hillary on: February 11, 2016, 04:44:28 pm
That's why they won't.
281  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Paint it Red: The Rise of the American Left (1908-) on: February 11, 2016, 04:19:36 pm

The First of Many Detroit Hunger Marches, 1930

  One article in The Daily Worker transcribed the failure of Milligan-Walsh as yet another "chain in the link of broken promises from Washington plutocracy." This article, and much of the Socialist Party itself, offered the opinion that President Ford's last-minute endorsement of the bill was a means to save face, citing wholesale Democratic rejection in Congress as proof that the party had been against the idea of a public program from the start.

  In the first of many 'hunger marches,' this one in Detroit, union leaders and left-activists stated to local press that the establishment had no qualms watching the poor starve. One man was quoted in saying, "These shills would see us die if it satisfied their lust for power." Weeks later, Detroit police would mow down a similar striking demonstration via machine gun, killing four and wounding more than 60. It was later discovered that some of the "police" were in fact security guards employed by the Ford Motor Company. President Ford would give just one statement on the matter: "Stay off the streets," and allow for city officials to work out the issues. This was, perhaps, not the greatest answer.

  Bill after bill was rejected in the Democratic Congress, from Progressive legislation designed to outlaw yellow-dog contracts to Socialist ones looking to guarantee collective bargaining as a basic right. This propelled the narrative that the upper-class (chiefly politicians and those wealthiest in America) had no intention of lessening the damage caused by the ever-worsening Depression. Throughout the latter half of 1930, workers all across the country came to the conclusion that they needed to fight  for the fulfillment of their basic rights and more suitable working conditions on their own.

  From 1930 to 1933, strikes broke out in all corners of the nation: from Sacramento agricultural workers to Tennessee coal miners, from New York newspapermen to Chicago marble setters. Reinforced by the SP and other left-wing radical pro-union organizations, hundreds of thousands of workers refused to work until their demands be met. Many of these individuals had starving families while others had been recently fired, yet their determination lingered on. The Socialist Party, as reported in the Washington Post, spent more of its own campaign funds on family assistance and urban shelter programs than re-election campaigns for the 1930 midterms.

  Both the Socialist Party as well as the pro-Trotsky Communist League of America had a definitive hand in these work stoppages. Just as the IWW had during the May Uprising, the SP and the CLA focused intently on organizing and radicalizing these workers, driving forward the narrative that each struggle against exploitation had been linked with the next. New York labor activist Norman Thomas, during an address to "Relief Demonstrators" in Manhattan, proclaimed, "What we must fight for is beyond this or that local achievement... We fight for a system in which human need is met through fair cooperation and genuine Marxian economics." Thomas also claimed that, "Congressional stalls are no accident," suggesting purposeful inactivity in Washington.

  This message that the system as a whole was corrupt, that Washington was deliberately acting against the working class, and most importantly, that the Depression was caused and perpetuated by capitalist greed gained credibility amongst American workers. Political scientists had been claiming for years that 'socialism' as an idea and practice was contracting as a political phenomenon. The crash drove a nail into this theory, and as would be exemplified by political activities and new movements in France and Germany, a global "Red Tide" was rushing forward.
282  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Paint it Red: The Rise of the American Left (1908-) on: February 10, 2016, 03:16:31 pm

President Ford Struggled to Find a Solution for the Nation's Depression

  Faced with the reality that jobs were disappearing and production was radically declining, the working class began to seriously reconsider their arrangement with big business. At the upper-level, Congress turned down bill after bill proposed by liberal Progressives and Socialists calling for government assistance programs designed to feed the hungry and shelter the homeless. One bill proposed by Senator A.A. Bagewell (S-OK), which would have created a multi-million dollar public jobs program for those living at or below the poverty line (estimated 75% by the following year), was rejected along party lines: 21 to 75.

  The crisis had fueled greater political interest by American workers, and in witnessing which party was on their side, interest in and membership with the Socialist and Farmer-Labor parties reached new heights. The Progressives also served to gain the most in this conversation, especially after planting itself as the sole sensible alternative to the Democrats. Senators Joseph Robinson (D-AK) and Gifford Pinchot (P-PA) also had pushed for federal regulations and jobs programs in 1930-31, but these calls were rejected by the conservative majority in Congress. Speaker Garrett stated in March of 1930 that, "Congress, with my full support, shall reject any measure which would put the United States on the road to socialism."

  Henry Ford, towards the end of 1930, began calling for emergency legislation. He began to go back on his word in calling for a "hands-off" approach, and called for new protectionist laws. He exclaimed that, though he was completely against government welfare and/or public jobs programs, he would agree to sign off on any bill which would "generate lax subsidies" for those businesses which provided a 40-hour work week to their employees. The president derided those "radicals" calling for a "transformative society," and instead argued in favor of short-term adjustments.

  The president also would lose a great deal of support from middle-of-the-aisle centrist Democrats when, in September 1930, he vocally threw his full support behind the Milligan-Walsh Bill. This legislation, though it failed by over 2/3rds of the House vote, would have been the so-called "Ford Modernization Effort" so desired by the president. It would directly subsidize factory-intensive companies to hire new workers if they were currently unable to, and would expand upon the Fitzgerald-Era infrastructure programs in order to generate the need for construction/engineering labor. Democrats overwhelmingly voted against this measure in the House, and Speaker Garrett himself spoke out against the legislation, stating, "The [jobs initiative] is in its early stages...it will require further deliberation".

  Ford's critics mercilessly attacked the president for authorizing the "pseudo-socialist government jobs bill". Though it never even passed through the House, critics asserted that the president's willingness to sign the measure meant he betrayed his party's values and those of his electorate. Former Senator James Reed (D-MO) called President Ford "spineless" and that his endorsement of the "estimated $150 million program would have been the single-largest spending waste in the history of the United States." Critics from other parties had been even harsher on the president.

  The failure of the Milligan-Walsh Bill to pass had two direct consequences. First had been the agitation of the Left Democratic Coalition as led by one of the bill's co-authors, Senator Walsh (D-MA). The LDC and Walsh had halfheartedly endorsed Henry Ford for president after he received the party's nomination, and through 1929 and 1930 agreed to cooperate with the party's mainstream in solving the economic slump. Congress' rejection of Milligan-Walsh altered this course. Senator Walsh stated on October 5th that it was due primarily to President Ford's "difficulty" dealing with Democratic leaders in Congress that he could not rally support for the bill when Ford himself endorsed it. From this point on, the LDC would trend towards Progressive voting patterns, and would routinely call for a new House Speaker election.

  Second, and far more significantly, the labor movement became reinvigorated as it never before had been.
283  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Fiorina Calls it Quits on: February 10, 2016, 03:14:14 pm
From her suspension announcement, "Do not listen to anyone who says you have to vote a certain way or for a certain candidate because you're a woman." BABOOM
284  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Fiorina Calls it Quits on: February 10, 2016, 03:12:10 pm
https://twitter.com/CarlyFiorina/status/697512258595782656

DING DONG THE WITCH IS DEAD
285  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Clinton campaign desecrates American flags on: February 10, 2016, 01:37:44 pm
Who cares?
286  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Which nonwhite group will Sanders have an easier time swinging? on: February 10, 2016, 02:36:01 am
Easily Hispanics.
287  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Republican New Hampshire primary results thread (polls close @7pm and 8pm ET) on: February 09, 2016, 10:35:33 pm
Rubio puts full blame for his loss on the debate performance, says it will not happen again. Dang.
288  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Republican New Hampshire primary results thread (polls close @7pm and 8pm ET) on: February 09, 2016, 10:30:31 pm
Christie heading back to New Jersey for "a change of clothes"
289  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Democratic New Hampshire primary results thread (polls close @7pm and 8pm ET) on: February 09, 2016, 09:56:43 pm
Killer speech, hit all the big points.
Sanders sounding like the nominee is a smart strategy.
290  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Democratic New Hampshire primary results thread (polls close @7pm and 8pm ET) on: February 09, 2016, 09:23:43 pm
Hillary's turtleneck looks like a neck-brace.
291  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Who'll win NV and SC? on: February 09, 2016, 09:07:56 pm
Trump wins both states.
Sanders narrowly wins NV, Clinton wins SC.
292  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Democratic New Hampshire primary results thread (polls close @7pm and 8pm ET) on: February 09, 2016, 08:00:59 pm
CNN calling NH for Bernie.
293  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Paint it Red: The Rise of the American Left (1908-) on: February 09, 2016, 06:57:55 pm

Newly Elected Prime Ministers of France and Germany, Maurice Thorez (left) and Ernst Thälmann (right)

  Germany and France also experienced significant transfer-of-power elections, yet in the totally opposite direction. The party which had led France since the start of the Fourth Republic, the SFIO, lost in a landslide vote during the 1932 elections. Under Léon Blum, the French Socialists had moved significantly towards the center in the past four years, and when the Depression struck, initiated unprecedented budget cuts. Much of the party split off in other directions, thereby leading to the ascension of the French Communist Party (PCF).

  The PCF had stood sternly on the side of the Soviet Union since 1917, and now was no exception. The new Prime Minister, Maurice Thorez, stated that time was overdue for a new Marxist constitutional amendments and official recognition of the Soviet state. Like the EIP, the PCF was also starkly nationalistic, however, and it too would initiate protectionist legislation. The leading party would not push through much dramatic legislation in its first year, other than strict state regulations on financing and new government jobs programs. The SFIO would become the minority party, followed closely behind by the Republican-Socialists.

  In the German Empire, the 1930 parliamentary election saw the fall of the ruling DNVP-Centrists as the SDP experienced a brief resurgence. Though the DNVP had ruled quite effectively since its winning of the majority in 1928, the Depression took them down just as hard as it took down the French Socialists and the British Labour Party. Centrism fell out of fashion in the blink of an eye and, with the SDP also advocating a strategy of liberalism and budget compromise, it ended up being a Coalition of the Left which would come to power in '32.

  This coalition, as organized shortly before the election, had been composed of the KDP along with portions of the Left-SDP, the Radical Workers' Party, and the Agricultural League. The KDP clearly commanded the coalition, and this had been no secret to the German people. The Kommunistische Allianz, or KA, rallied the German workers into the famous cross-industry General Strike of 1931-32, which served to radicalize the working class as only the 1920 Uprising had previously accomplished. With wages slipping and unemployment skyrocketing, the workers demanded either a new class structure or a new economic one.

  The 1932 Elections ended in the succession of the KA to the majority, with 268 seats, while the SDP retained second-minority status. Ernst Thälmann became the nation's new Prime Minister, as opposed to popular speculation that it would be Rosa Luxemburg (she would lead a unionizing effort in 1933). Thälmann gained national recognition in June of 1929 when he publicly condemned the "backward" policies of Soviet leader Josef Stalin as "needlessly confrontational". He therefore led the world's first anti-Soviet Communist Party, and much of the public approved of this message. As a side note, Kaiser Wilhelm initially threatened to dissolve the Reichstag after the election results came in, but when Thälmann agreed not to tamper with the powers of nor demand the resignation of the emperor, Wilhelm reluctantly quelled his opposition.

  The first official acts of Prime Ministers Thorez and Thälmann were the total outlawing of the far-right and/or fascist organizations. Thorez outlawed the National Bloc, Thälmann outlawed the National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP), and many of the leading voices in such groups were either imprisoned for life or executed. In France, far-right politicians and activists which advocated for the overthrow of Jules Guesde in 1918 and Thorez in 1932, like Louis Marin, were exiled. Prime Minister Thälmann, though he had been personally opposed to the death penalty, nonetheless ordered the execution of NSDAP leader Adolf Hitler: an order which was carried out on January 31st, 1933.
294  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Ross Perot? on: February 09, 2016, 02:29:36 pm
Crazy person. Credit for shaking up '92 and '96.
295  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Which Republicans can beat Trump in a head-to-head? on: February 09, 2016, 02:25:52 pm
Christie is nearly as big of a bully as Trump is, so him.
296  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Paint it Red: The Rise of the American Left (1908-) on: February 09, 2016, 01:53:55 pm
 

UK Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald

  As the months ticked on through 1930, it became evidently clear that this "Depression" was here to stay. Banks shut their doors and closed down without explanation, money supply depreciated, unemployment doubled, and the Dow Jones average fell further down. Throughout Europe, the global long-term trend of a rise in radical political thought received its catalyst. The Far Left described the financial crisis as a "failure of global capitalism" while the Right attacked corruption and internationalism.

  Those states already running a state-capitalist system with an all-encompassing centralized government, such as Poland and the Soviet Union, did not feel any of the reverberations from the collapse, and both saw huge economic growth in 1930. Benito Mussolini's Fascist Italy, though certainly hit by the crash and subsequent Depression, chose to take state control of bank-owned companies in order to lessen the strain of international tension. Chiefly rural countries, like Ireland and Lithuania, felt very little in terms of economic pressure. These aforementioned countries were virtually the only ones without huge social and cultural changes brought on by the Depression.

  Great Britain, which had been paying war reparations for all of this time, hardly recovered economically from its 1924 Recession before the new international crisis struck. The Labour Party, under Ramsay MacDonald, had won a slim majority government in the May 1929 general election and began instituting mild reforms with cross-support by the Liberals. When the panic hit, MacDonald and his government took the blame. Divided and struggling to find a solution, the Labour Party was expected to lose in a landslide to the protectionist Conservatives.

  On October 27th, on the day of the election, due in part to a long-term campaign and virulent blaming on the traditional "party system of the elites," the English Independence Party won the greatest amount of seats in Parliament: 287. The leader of the EIP and the new British Prime Minister, Thomas "Tommy" Moran, proudly proclaimed that the election represented the, "Dawning of a new age for the British Empire." The far-right politician called upon a renewal of spirit and vitality for the English and declared that with strict protectionist legislation, the common man would have no need to fear the "international financiers".

  Outgoing Prime Minister MacDonald along with Conservative PM Stanley Baldwin blasted Moran for his indistinct policies and political inexperience, but, in this midst of the economic panic, this criticism fell on deaf ears. The Labour Party had retained roughly 150 seats, and with their new leader, PM Arthur Henderson, they would seek to act as a progressive alternative to the "clouded judgement" of the EIP. The Conservatives and the Liberals had the third and fourth party slots, while the Communist Party of Great Britain took 33 seats.
297  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: How big of a "p[inks]y" is Ted Cruz? on: February 08, 2016, 10:18:10 pm
"That's terrible" as translated in the Trumptionary means "I completely agree."
298  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Albright poll: Women will go to Hell if they don't vote for Hillary on: February 08, 2016, 06:29:51 pm
Why doesn't Albright support Fiorina? What a sexist.
299  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Surprises of the NH primaries. on: February 08, 2016, 04:27:11 pm
4-way tie for second
300  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Atlas Predicts NH 2016: 'We know exactly what we're doing' on: February 08, 2016, 04:09:39 pm
Republicans

Trump: 25%
Rubio: 15%
Cruz: 11%
Kasich: 17%
Bush: 15%
Christie: 10%
Fiorina: 3%
Carson: 3%
Gilmore: 0%

Democrats

Sanders: 58%
Clinton: 42%
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