Sunday, September 08, 2019

Andrew Yang in his own words

A decent, 8-minute sound bite of Andrew Yang giving a short speech in New Hampshire's Democratic Party National Convention:

Yang wisely de-emphasizes all the stupid conspiracy theories that purport to explain how and why Donald Trump ended up in the White House. His thesis—he calls himself a "numbers guy," so he says he's going where the numbers lead him—is that automation has been "taking a buzzsaw to the economy," eliminating jobs, especially in the swing states that Trump won in 2016. Whether you agree with Yang's thesis is a question I leave up to you, but I'll give him credit for not automatically making Trump the Russia-loving, racist bogeyman that other candidates are talking about. Yang is, at least, clear-eyed on that matter, and he doesn't sound as if he's taken the bait that so many other candidates have taken. (My opinion may change if/when I listen to more of what he's said about Trump in public.)

Statistically speaking, Yang doesn't really stand a chance, and his recent crying jag won't have helped his numbers. The Democrats, who think of themselves as the multicolored, big-tent party of diversity, have three old, white, corporatist schlubs—Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren—as their front-runners right now. The party of racial diversity could be fronting Yang, or Tulsi Gabbard, or maybe even Kamala Harris (whom I find batshit insane), but they've instead chosen to move forward with "electability" as their top criterion. And somewhere deep in the leftist's brain, in some hidden, reptilian portion, "electable" somehow still means "old and white." What a sad (yet rich) irony for a party that spends so much time and energy scorning and demonizing old whiteness.

Anyway, the upshot is that Yang, polling at only 3%, can be safely dismissed this time around. He, like Gabbard and maybe Pete Buttigieg, might have a chance in 2024. I expect to see all those folks again in the next cycle, when the Democrats will—I hope—have finally realized that nominating crazy, spineless, and/or senile-demented people isn't the way to win an election.

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