What we talk about when we talk about Susan Sarandon

Susan Sarandon says Trump’s election may help the revolution. Liberals scream, “IRRESPONSIBLE!”

The Democrats say that Trumpcare’s victory in the House will help the Democrats in 2018. Liberals say, “Strategy.”

Bernie Sanders says abortion shouldn’t be a litmus test. Liberals cry, “SOCIALIST CLASSBRO HATES WOMEN!”

Nancy Pelosi says—twice, second time even more strongly—abortion shouldn’t be a litmus test. Liberals say…almost nothing at all.

It’s almost as if we’re not really having an honest conversation about our disagreements.


  1. mazzaus May 4, 2017 at 10:27 pm | #


  2. jcc2455 May 4, 2017 at 11:27 pm | #

    House obamacare vote sure to win the 2018 elections for the Democrats. Just like how Obamacare won the 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016 elections. Strategery!

    The majority of Americans’ coverage has eroded badly since President Obama promised them they could keep it. But Trump voters are stupid.

  3. John Miller May 4, 2017 at 11:30 pm | #

    It’s not a strategy. It’s an expectation. They didn’t vote for Trumpcare.

  4. phatkhat May 5, 2017 at 12:00 am | #

    Liberals hate leftists. Establishment Dems hate Bernie more than they hate Trump.

    • Artie Alfreds May 5, 2017 at 6:50 pm | #

      for me, Bernie is a faux leftist. A true leftist would oppose the US Empire/War Machine//criminal Israel.

  5. Chris Morlock May 5, 2017 at 12:19 am | #

    Maybe it’s time to Listen, Liberal?

  6. hasburgh May 5, 2017 at 6:14 am | #

    Here’s the platform… right left or moderate, progressive or liberal … Choice, Single Payer, 15.00 minimum wage and Public School Education, including free college. Pro NATO, Pro EU and UN. Pro Israel but AGAINST the settlements. That’s it, the whole deal; done.

    • ronp May 5, 2017 at 1:50 pm | #

      plus energy conversion (keep it in the ground), half earth eco-preservation, parental leave, same day voter registration, national election holiday, double social security benefits.

  7. zenner41 May 5, 2017 at 10:20 am | #

    Politics (in the rough-and-tumble boxing ring of practicality) is not a place for honest conversations. It’s a kind of war. Remember the saying “war is a continuation of politics by other means.” It’s also true that politics is war with slightly less lethal weapons.

    Honest conversations about social issues are fine and necessary, but they rarely win elections. It’s way past time that intellectual types understood that.

  8. troy grant May 5, 2017 at 1:26 pm | #

    Global problems are caused by ignorance. The Internet, the Universal Mind (God?), the greatest educational tool ever, would end ignorance worldwide.
    It is difficult for liberals to focus on minutiae when paralyzed in awe of the rapid technological changes leading to the Singularity.
    Thanks to Elon Musk and Space X for their intent to place the other half of the world online.

  9. dkloke May 5, 2017 at 2:48 pm | #

    It looks like herding.

    Too bad so many people don’t know how herding works.

  10. amajzels May 7, 2017 at 5:49 pm | #

    Okay, I don’t get it. How is the desire to have an honest conversation at all compatible with the extremely broad and frankly useless labels you have assigned here?

    Its not.

    You don’t need me to tell you this.

    So I cannot begin to understand what you mean to accomplish here? I need an explanation, prof.

  11. Nick May 8, 2017 at 9:05 am | #

    The whip fast response to events with assigned equivalences is not academic or journalism. People who are white hot with rage are obviously not going to talk about anything with their opponents. Many liberals and “leftists” are like this.

    • Artie Alfreds May 8, 2017 at 9:38 am | #

      I’m a hard leftist, & not white hot. I will engage in debate, calm & rational, with anyone.

    • Patrick May 8, 2017 at 12:36 pm | #

      HA…. too funny. The “white hot response” of liberals and leftists? In my experience there’s not a more viciously hotheaded, more thoughtless subgroup than right wing christians. Absolutely the last people who should ever be allowed to serve on a jury.

      • Artie Alfreds May 8, 2017 at 9:48 pm | #

        In my experience the hard left is very well read, very educated, knowledgeable about philosophy. You’r ejust slinging mud.

  12. Robert Helfand May 10, 2017 at 10:15 am | #

    This is very disappointing casuistry. The Democrats who are trying to use the Putincare bill to retake the House are dealing with a situation in which Trump is already President and already causing real harm to real people. Such as the thousands of immigrants and refugees who are now afraid to leave their homes. Susan Sarandon spoke before the election, saying, in effect, that the suffering of those people would be worthwhile for the sake of gaining a hypothetical tactical edge. Congressional Democrats are engaged in trying to undo the suffering Susan Sarandon welcomed. There is no equivalence.

    Similarly, Nancy Pelosi declared that she wouldn’t use abortion, or any other single issue, as a litmus test for membership in a Democratic coalition. That is not the position for which Bernie has been criticized. Bernie does use litmus tests–hence, his failure to support John Ossoff. But in Bernie’s world, support for a $!2 minimum wage is a dealbreaker, while support for forced pregnancies is OK. Again, no equivalence.

    • Artie Alfreds May 11, 2017 at 7:30 pm | #

      1) Bernie supports US Empire/War Machine/criminal Israel. 2) sure, Trump is doing damage, but, at least, it’s clear to almost everyone, while damages were being done before- you don’t remember that Obama was known as the Great Deporter?

    • roger gathmann May 30, 2017 at 10:42 pm | #

      “Let me be very clear. It is imperative that Jon Ossoff be elected congressman from Georgia’s 6th District and that Democrats take back the U.S. House,” Sanders said in statement. “I applaud the energy and grassroots activism in Jon’s campaign. His victory would be an important step forward in fighting back against Trump’s reactionary agenda.”http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/democrats-vs-trump/bernie-sanders-clarifies-support-jon-ossoff-after-dustup-n749491

      • troy grant June 2, 2017 at 4:57 pm | #

        Why depend on Bernie or any politician to save us?

        We could discuss and fix all our disagreements if we followed Switzerland, Iceland, Barcelona and Helsinki’s lead and adopted direct grassroots democracy now rather than later. We could make proposals and cast secure encrypted votes on any and all laws by the touch of a cellphone key.

        Why depend on a corrupt, archaic, oligarchy designed system of government when we can have all the advantages the Swiss have had for almost 300 years of direct democracy? They have enjoyed one of the highest per capita incomes in the world despite their lack of natural resources, no wars although surrounded by warring nations, no drug war and few drug problems, few immigration problems, no pollution, no boom and bust economy, the best healthcare and education, etc. One could say direct grassroots democracy online is technologically inevitable.

        Direct Democracy in Reykjavík: The Wisdom of the Icelandic Crowd-Sourcers

        Switzerland’s direct democracy


      • Artie Alfreds June 2, 2017 at 5:28 pm | #

        Sanders supports US Empire/War Machine/criminal Israel. On top of it, I’m totally done w the Democrats, & their new support for a New Cold War.

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