The Democrats’ un-brotherly love convention

If you had woken up from a deep eight-year sleep and listened to the Democrats’ speeches at their convention last week, you would think all was wonderful with the world, except for a few glitches here and there. (Well most speeches; Bernie was still yelling.)

Everything is so great. America has never not been great – said and repeated by those who have never believed in American exceptionalism. There has been an ISIS-related attack every 84 hours since June 8, yet ISIS, allowed to form and made worse because of the nominee and her boss, was barely mentioned in prime time. No mention of the savage throat-slitting of a beloved 85-year-old Catholic priest in France. Now had the priest been killed by a gun instead of a knife…

The convention strategy was to ignore reality, to be bright and shiny. Maybe if the speakers tell everyone things are pretty much both hunky and dory, viewers will not look out the window. All is sunny here and abroad as we prance and twirl merrily around the meadow, arms flapping in the wind, with daisies in our mouths, all the while humming Peter, Paul and Mary songs.

Before the convention even got underway, the united front the Democrats wanted to project never had a chance when it was learned through hacked emails from the DNC that, what a shock, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Democratic National Committee Chair, and her staff actually did use the DNC to Hillary Clinton’s advantage over the Bernie Sanders campaign.

One staffer even suggested a way to hurt Bernie Sanders by exploiting his Jewishness or lack thereof. Boy, had this happened with the Republicans, the cries of racism would have been relentless. The superdelegate scam giving Hillary 602 unelected delegates and Bernie only 48 didn’t help. Of course, the talking points directives went out posthaste. Deflect away from the DNC emails to the hacking issue. It was hard to find any Democrat not falling in line and actually being gutsy. But that’s typical for the Democrats.

By Day 1, everyone inside and outside the convention had felt the Bern and I don’t mean a rash, although one never knows with those radicals who set American and Israeli flags on fire. Wasserman Schultz resigned from the DNC and her role as gavel-pounding chair of the convention. And in the spirit of “party reconciliation,” Hillary appointed the proven liar, and this time I mean Wasserman Schultz, her campaign’s honorary chairperson. I am sure that slap made the fuming Bernies feel so much better, don’t you?

Now notes on some speakers.

Vermont senator Bernie Sanders was the rock star of the first night. After he was introduced, there was so much genuine applause and cheering, it took forever for it to stop. No other speaker generated that kind of welcome, not President Obama and not Hillary Clinton. And Sanders didn’t need to walk around the stage to milk as much adoration as possible, like Hillary Clinton would do on Thursday night.

The bombastic, angry, zero-achievements socialist shouted what he has been shouting all along about his revolution and then he took the air out of it. The next day after the roll call nominating the person he bitterly claimed was unqualified to be president – he was right (and he wasn’t qualified either), Sanders asked the convention to convert all of his delegates to Hillary’s and he then walked out.

And so exits the leader of the revolution – with not a small number of followers mind you, 46% of the pledged delegates representing millions (scary), whimpering away unrevolutionary-like, tail between his legs, betraying the very people he galvanized.

So what now for the burned Bernies? Most will go Hillary, some will go Green Party, a very, very, very few may go Donald, and the rest will refuse to vote and go back to binge watching The Young Turks, Democracy Now!, and reruns of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. That is, when they aren’t waving Palestinian flags at anti-Israel rallies. And Democratic National Conventions.

The Democrats recognizing the American people want change – 70% believe we are on the wrong track, had Bill Clinton be the first to strenuously make the Hillary change agent case on Day 2, and after all, who better to talk about change than that amorous Oval Office cigar aficionado relic from the 1990’s? He did the change thing about Hillary in 2008 when Obama used “Hope and Change” to such effect, and he did it again. “She’s the best darn change-maker I ever met in my entire life!” exclaimed the impeached one.

So eight years later having spent even more years in Washington, Hillary is even more of a change-maker. Right. Change, change, change, change, change. As if repeating the lie again and again will make it true for the biggest liar ever to run for US president.

The only change Hillary could make was if there was a million dollar bill in circulation. “Hey, can anyone break a million?” “Yeah, I just spoke to Goldman Sachs again, here you go.” (Bill: “Hey, honey, if you can’t do it, I can. The Saudis and Qataris just gave the foundation a bunch of cash between floggings and beheadings of gays and adulterous women.”)

For half of Bill’s speech right from the start, interspersed with wonderful things Ms. Rodham had done – apparently, everything he did as Governor was all her, he never had an idea of his own – the former president told a sweet story about how as a young law student he fell in love with Hillary and kept trying to get her to marry him. She finally relented allowing the warm and fuzzy Bill Clinton to become the faithful husband we all know he has been. So we can readily believe everything he said.

In my opinion, Vice President Joe Biden gave the best speech of the convention. Emotional in the beginning about his late son, passionate all the way through, and he hit all the right red meat points. Had Biden been the chosen one, the Democrats wouldn’t have had to worry at all as they are now doing with the oh-so-flawed Clinton. People genuinely like Joe Biden, on both sides of the aisle; he comes across as authentic and likeable, everything Hillary Clinton is not.

VP pick, Virginia Senator Tim Kaine’s use of Spanish and his continued mimicking of Donald Trump – “Believe me” – worked well for the crowd, all laughing about Trump’s tax returns, for example. But Kaine could have said the same about Hillary’s Wall Street speeches transcripts. In fact, for so much of Kaine’s speech, he could have replaced Donald Trump with Hillary Clinton and vice versa. And when Kaine called Hillary consistent, I nearly fell out of my chair. When Kaine praising Clinton said you couldn’t believe a word Trump said – “Not a word” – I did.

Day 3. President Obama, the teleprompter master, gave a great speech. He was comfortable and flawless in delivery, trashing Trump and cherry-picking what he felt were successes out of the domestic and foreign messes he is leaving to the next president.

After Obama said this about Trump: “He suggests America is weak. He must not hear the billions of men, women, and children, from the Baltics to Burma, who still look to America to be the light of freedom, dignity, and human rights,” I immediately thought sure he hears them, we all do. We all know billions of suffering people look to America to be the light freedom. And those same people are also painfully aware Obama is the last person on earth who will do anything about it.

Day 4 and now it was Hillary’s turn. I thought her delivery was so-so, and in regards to the text, there were only platitudes. It was the standard “We should do this and we should do that speech.” Generalities and not much more. This on ISIS: “We will strike their sanctuaries from the air, and support local forces taking them out on the ground. We will surge our intelligence so that we detect and prevent attacks before they happen. We will disrupt their efforts online to reach and radicalize young people in our country.”

Duh. Can you be a little more specific please? For example, will we strike their sanctuaries wherever they are? Do we support local forces with troops, and if so, how many?

When she said that with humility she accepted the nomination, I nearly gagged. OK, all those who think Hillary Clinton is humble, please raise your hands. Thought so.

When this true money-grubber (sorry Elizabeth Warren, Hillary has a tough-to-beat standard) said Democrats were the party of working people, I did gag. Now anyone who thinks Hillary Clinton, this ethically-challenged, shameless, fee-driven hands-out opportunist to rich and poor institutions alike carpetbagger represents working people, as she and her husband have racked up tens of millions of dollars since leaving office, please raise your hands. Aha.

During the speech, there were so many “Hillary” and other chants as she kept on speaking, I knew something was up. Because the campaign was well aware the nominee would be heckled by the Bernies who did not walk out or get thrown out, and there were many of those, DNC operatives led counter-chants of “USA!” “Join Them!” (huh?) and “Hillary!” depending on the Bernie heckle.

Hillary officially introduced her new “Stronger Together” slogan. Look, say what you will about The Donald and I have, at least he has had one slogan from the start and he has stuck with it. And it resonates.

Hillary began her campaign with “Hillary For America.” Then in no particular order, “Building The Economy Of Tomorrow,” “Strengthening Our Families.”  “Ready For Hillary,” “Make America Whole,” “Real Results,” “Fixing Our Dysfunctional Political System,” “Defending America And Our Core Values,” “Fighting For Us,” “Love And Kindness,” “Protecting Our Country From Threats,” “Revitalizing Our Democracy,” “Break Down Barriers,” “Build Ladders Of Opportunity,” “I’m With Her,” “Love Trumps Hate,” “United Together,” and now “Stronger Together.” I might have missed a few. I guess Hillary Clinton brings change after all.

Don’t tell anyone, but I was able to find out the next bunch of Hillary slogans should the race remain close. And no, I didn’t hack into Hillary’s emails, but the Russians did send me the list. OK, here goes: “She Was Not Indicted,” “I’m With Stupid,” “Bernies’s Bubbe 2016,” “It Was Only Emails,” “Break Down, Build Up, Fight, Love, Lie, Defend, Fix, E Pluribus Unum, Cholent,” “What Difference At This Point Does It Make?” “Hillary Doesn’t Lie, She Clarifies,” “I Sort Of Trust Her,” “She’s Entitled,” “Even Monica’s Voting For Her,” “Why Release The Transcripts?” “Change-Maker Since 1977,” “It Takes A Villain,” “I Like Ike,” and “Mares Eat Oats and Does Eat Oats and Little Lambs Eat Ivy.”

OK, so there you have it. I hope you were as amused and/or appalled as I was. On to the campaign trail!

About the Author
Shia Altman who hails from Baltimore, MD, now lives in Los Angeles. His Jewish studies, aerospace, and business and marketing background includes a BA from the University of Maryland and an MBA from the University of Baltimore. When not dabbling in Internet Marketing, Shia tutors Bar and Bat Mitzvah, and Judaic and Biblical Studies to both young and old.
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