NEXT KCDW MEETING NOV. 18TH: Yacht Club Broiler – No host lunch – 11:30 am; Meeting – 12:30 pm. As we did not have a quorum at our last meeting, no vote on the proposed Bylaw changes was taken. Should we have a quorum at this meeting, we will take that vote over lunch. Dr. Samantha Powers will join us for a discussion on military sexual trauma. NO RSVP required. The Holiday Party will be Dec 12th at Ambrosia Catering Company. More information will be sent later.
by Jo Fox Burr
How many times have we heard about how some particular Trump antic will surely be his demise only to see his poll numbers soar instead? How many strange and naïve statements has Carson made which then have no impact on his numbers? On the Democratic side, who would have predicted Bernie Sanders would challenge Hillary Clinton as much as he has? It seems that the ground is shifting and the pundits seem totally bamboozled. When they dare to make predictions now they attach caveats which indicate less and less confidence. What’s happening? Well, there have been a couple of surprising demographic studies recently released which might explain a lot.
Most importantly there was the study which found that starting in 1999, there has been an alarming increase in the death rates of middle-aged white Americans between the ages of 45 - 54. Turns out the increase was primarily in a sub-group who had less than a college level education. Most of these deaths were due to either suicides or drug and alcohol related deaths.
Who do I blame? Well, first there is Mitt Romney and his fellow corporate raiders who shipped the manufacturing jobs of this sub-group of Americans overseas. Then I blame the bought political enablers who changed the rules, allowing this to be done and, among other things, also allowed medical costs and energy prices to rise astronomically, made college unaffordable, and ultimately allowed Wall Street to cause a major recession. This sub-group was hit hard by all of these disasters with no significant recovery from the recession coming their way. As they face retirement they find they will have little to support them. I blame Rush Limbaugh (why not?) and his ilk, who masterfully misdirected their resulting rage towards dummy targets – like the liberal press and politicians. I blame FOX News which fed them lies and half-truths, while pretending to be fair and balanced. While I don’t want to blame victims for their own death, perhaps allowing themselves to be snookered by Limbaugh and FOX into voting against their own interest forced many into a box with no apparent exit to them other than suicide. However, I feel we Democrats must also blame ourselves for allowing this to happen – for not recognizing and finding a way to significantly counter it.
This group and others who have not recovered well economically, perhaps see it this way. They did not profit from either a somewhat conventional Republican President, Bush, (compared to the yahoos now running), or a conventional Democratic President, Obama; so why not look outside the box towards a Trump or Carson. How could they possibly do worse? Of course, I would counter that Obama would gladly have done more for them, but his hands were tied by a totally incompetent Congress for most of his administration which they helped to elect with the encouragement of Limbaugh and FOX. As it is, he has done an amazing amount for them as much as he could without the aid of Congress.
I remember when canvassing for Eugene McCarthy – in my twenties – an older woman told me she did not understand what was happening, but was ready to let the younger generation take over. As a senior citizen now, I’ve been waiting for an energetic and in-tuned younger generation to take over. Well, it turns out this second demographic study shows the millennial generation, age 18 – 31, feel comparatively less inclined than previous generations to attach themselves to organized institutions – such as religions or political parties. The good news, is that they are generally more liberal leaning and vote mostly for Democrats. The bad news is they don’t seem inclined to help build the party to make us function better. However, it probably explains why Bernie Sanders being a Socialist and not a Democrat, doesn’t bother them.
In short, the ground is changing. We need to come to terms with it and adjust accordingly. I don’t know how to do that, but it seems to me that recognizing and understanding this shift is the first step.
OTHER UPCOMING DEMOCRATIC MEETINGS AND EVENTS: (*GM designates a general membership meeting)
Kitsap Co. Dem. Central Com: GM* Nov 16th (Monday); 6:30 pm Desserts; 7 pm meeting; Eagles Nest
Holiday Party – Dec. 5th for more information see http://www.kitsapdemocrats.com/
23rd Leg. District Democrats: GM* Nov 17 (Tuesday); 6:30 pm social time; 7 pm meeting; Poulsbo Library
26th Leg. District Democrats: GM* Dec 3rd (Thursday); 7-9 pm; Kitsap Rm, Givens Ctr 1026 Sidney Rd, Port Orchard
35th Leg. District Democrats: Nov 15 (Sunday); 2-4 pm; West Sound Extravaganza of Music, Dance, Art & Humor.
Tickets through AdmiralTheatre.org/Tickets - $30; $35 at the door
Have you noticed that every one of these [GOP] candidates say, “Obama's weak. Putin's kicking sand in his face. When I talk to Putin, he's going to straighten out.” Then it turns out they can't handle a bunch of CNBC moderators at the debate. Let me tell you, if you can't handle those guys, then I don't think the Chinese and the Russians are going to be too worried about you. – President Barack Obama.
DON’T FORGET, THAT IT IS NEVER TOO LATE TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE BAKELESS BAKE SALE!!!