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Last Week's Radio Derb Transcript: The Bonnie and Clyde of U.S. politics
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April 15, 2016, 05:19 PM
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This week's Radio Derb will be up shortly. While you're waiting, check out last week's transcript, just posted.  Sample quote:
The Bonnie and Clyde of U.S. politics.     For the month of April, the big primary contests coming up are New York on the 19th and Pennsylvania on the 26th. For the GOP, New York offers 95 delegates, allocated in proportion to how many votes each candidate gets. Pennsylvania yields 71 delegates, winner take all. For the Democrats, New York has 247 delegates and Pennsylvania 189, both proportional.

Latest polls show Trump far out ahead in New York, with Ted Cruz actually polling third, behind John Kasich. Hillary Clinton is well ahead of Bernie Sanders here.

For Pennsylvania the same, Trump and Clinton leading. Trump’s not leading by that much, though, and Cruz could possibly catch him. The flaw here for Trump is the people who tell pollsters they’re undecided. When they do decide, they tend to break big-time for Cruz. That’s why Trump’s voter numbers have been lagging his polls.

Again, regional culture is a guide to the likely results. Bernie Sanders’ appeal is to the less clannish, more universalist groups, like those Germans and Scandinavians in the Midwest. On a word-association test with the phrase “democratic socialism,” the response “Scandinavia” has to score pretty high; although in fact the first real advances towards modern democratic socialism took place in Bismarck’s Germany. So it’s no surprise that Bernie won in Minnesota, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Kansas, Michigan, Wisconsin.

In New York and Pennsylvania there are more clannish, tribal groups — Americans of Italian, Irish, and Jewish origins — and Mrs Clinton will naturally do better among those, as will Trump.

Meanwhile, Mister Clinton’s been out campaigning for his wife. These two are a real tag team, aren’t they? — the Bonnie and Clyde of American politics.

Thursday this week Bill was in Philadelphia at a rally for his business partner — I beg their pardon: his wife — when protesters from the George Soros front organization Black Lives Matter tried to disrupt the event by yelling and hoisting banners.

The focus of the protesters was the 1994 federal crime bill, which funded lots of new police hires and prisons, and created new death penalty offenses. The bill was mainly a response to the crack epidemic of the eighties and early nineties, and to demands from black community leaders for more law enforcement.

The blogger M.G. included the 1994 laws in her list of what she calls “diversity whack-a-moles“: blacks demand that the government do something about something and then, when the government does do the thing requested, complain that it’s hurting blacks.

“Get the crack dealers off the streets of our communities!”

OK, we’ll arrest them and put them in jail.

“Too many of our young people are in jail!”

Uh …

So these protestors were yelling at Bubba about that 1994 Crime Bill. Bubba yelled right back at them.
[Clip:  I don’t know how you would characterize the gang leaders who got 13-year-old kids hopped on crack and sent them out on the street to murder other African-American children … You are defending the people who killed the lives you say matter.]
What’s going on here is a classic pivot to the center. The Clintons had to be nice to blacks when the Southern primaries were in play. There are a lot of blacks down there, and Bonnie and Clyde wanted to get them out to vote.

Now that’s all over, the nomination is sewn up, and the Clintons are looking to the general in November. For that they need to get working-class white votes; so the blacks can go pound sand.

Incidentally, having mentioned blogger M.G. just there, I note that she’s now resumed blogging after a four-month hiatus. This is the blog named Those Who Can See, and it’s well worth a visit — beautifully crafted, plenty of links, lots of useful and interesting information gathered in one place. In this latest blog, she gives a thorough work-over to a topic I touched on back in January: anti-racism, and progressive ideology in general, as religions. Check it out.