Diary Of Philadelphia At The DNC 2016

I decided to go to Philly to protest the DNC and the horrible choice of Hillary Clinton. I’ve been putting my heart and soul into Bernie Sanders’ campaign since he announced. I donated time and money for over a year. I saw it through to the end when he conceded at the DNC in Philadelpia. I cannot possibly try to describe the once-in-a-lifetime feeling I had being there around people like me. Everyone was so awesome. Everyone talked. It’s like we were all friends. I even got to see and meet some of my progressive heroes like Lee Camp, Debbie the Sane Progressive, Greg Palast, and Jimmy Dore.

Pictures: https://www.flickr.com/photos/niles38/albums/72157670935743242/

Here is the diary of what my experiences were. If you ever get a chance to be a part of something bigger than yourself, please do it and see it all the way through. I need to keep harping on these feelings since I may never feel this way again. That’s how much this experience meant to me.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

  1. Woke up & finished packing; texted Heidi
  2. Went over Heidi’s house & helped decorate her car with Bernie writing
  3. On the way up to Philly we saw another Bernie car decorated; we honked & waved
  4. We also saw Black Men For Bernie bus; they later honked at us
  5. Got to the hotel in New Jersey and checked in
  6. Went to nearest PATCO station; Heidi & Ken got the Bernie Sanders banner; I got my Jill Stein quote sign
  7. There were other Berners on the platform; talked to them while waiting for the train
  8. Some guy accidently fell; when he got up, he said, “Hillary for prison!”
  9. Did an interview with a news station with Heidi & Ken on the platform
  10. Talked with other Berners on where to go; decided to go to the Climate Rally
  11. Started marching with the Climate Rally that ended at Independence National Historic Park
  12. Chilled at Independence National Historic Park; Ken got us lunch
  13. Decided to go to the March For Bernie at 3; saw Josh Fox speak as we were leaving; gave the rest of our lunch to a homeless man
  14. Went to Philly City Hall to start the March For Bernie
  15. Marched to FDR Park; fire hydrants were open so we took turns going through them to cool off; march was around 4-5 miles
  16. Chilled at FDR Park for a few minutes
  17. Decided to head over to the Fire early for Lee Camp
  18. Walked a few blocks since traffic was blocked off to get an Uber (only Uber we took the whole time)
  19. Chilled at The Fire; Heidi got pizza; drank until the show
  20. It was really hot in the room; Lee Camp and company were late coming out
  21. During the show Ken made a chair joke; there were a few chairs at the front; Ken said “one less chair today” referring to DWS; I was also the only one who “wooed” for agnostics
  22. Left the show early since it was so hot
  23. Got directions from fire fighters; caught the Philly subway (SEPTA) to PATCO
  24. Went back to the hotel

Monday, July 25, 2016

  1. Got up & had breakfast; they had waffles; took picture & sent it to Bri
  2. Got ready & left the room
  3. Had a problem finding parking; parked at a Bernie campaign headquarters a few blocks away
  4. Met more Berners on the platform waiting for the train
  5. Went to Philly City Hall for the Press Conference which turned out to be a rally
  6. It was a huge rally; got separated from Heidi & Ken several times
  7. Saw Nina Turner speak
  8. Met up with Mel & gang
  9. Heidi wanted to eat so we decided to do the 3:00 march instead of the 1:00 march
  10. Walked across the street to a ritzy place; had a crabcake sandwich & beer; talked to two college kids who were Berners
  11. Jimmy Dore walked in as we were leaving!
  12. Said hi to Jimmy Dore and that I was a huge fan while walking out… didn’t want to bother him while he was eating
  13. Ken left for home
  14. Marched to FDR Park
  15. Banged on wall & protested outside the wall
  16. Found a spot on the lawn for the Jill Stein Power To The People Rally
  17. Heard others & later Jill Stein speak
  18. Afterward banged on fence during the rain
  19. Hundreds of Berners seeked shelter under an overpass walking back; some of them wanted to block up traffic; tried to stop them since it wasn’t helping anything
  20. Headed back to the hotel; got a shower
  21. Went to Wegman’s for sushi & fruit

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

  1. Got up & had breakfast
  2. Ran into Hillary supporter at breakfast; asked me where I was going today; tried to tell me Bernie will be a huge part of Hillary’s campaign & platform moving forward; doubted it heavily
  3. Got to the train; went to Thomas Paine Plaza for the Bernie or Bust rally
  4. Debbie the Sane Progressive spoke; Lee Camp spoke; YahNe Ndgo spoke
  5. Heidi stalked Jimmy Dore & when he was free called me over to get my picture taken with him! I told him I had a crush on him & he kissed me!!!
  6. Jill Stein spoke
  7. Got on Philly metro (SEPTA) to take it to FDR Park
  8. Had to exit one stop before since we weren’t allowed at the last stop (since that was for the delegates); when we got off the train people were chanting “Bernie, Bernie, Bernie”; amazing moment
  9. Saw the DNC put up another wall to stop us; protested at the wall; yelled to Hillary delegate that she just voted to send her children to war; cried for my cousin and my friends who are in the military
  10. Watched a bit of the convention in FDR Park (they had a stage & huge screens)
  11. More protesting at the walls
  12. Headed back & ran into Jill Stein walking to FDR Park; I was like two feet away from her; she spoke briefly; people swarmed around her
  13. Headed back to the hotel & had a shower
  14. Went out to dinner and ran into some Berners; had dinner with them!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

  1. Got up & had breakfast
  2. Ran into Bernie supporters on the platform; an older guy named Dan (who looked like Robert Reich) and his trip mate, Patricia; lots of Berners did carpools and traveled together even if they didn’t know each other
  3. Heidi & Dan did an interview with HBO
  4. Black Men For Bernie Rally; a few Hillary supporters showed up; someone took one of their signs & then gave it back (hey they did it to us inside the convention); we later all hugged the Hillary supporters
  5. Heidi got up on stage & spoke
  6. Ran into Mel who got up on stage & spoke later
  7. Kshama Sawant spoke
  8. Had milkshakes at McDonald’s; spoke to a woman who didn’t know who Bernie is; spoke to a Hispanic young guy who would have been deported thanks to the crime bill but he fought it
  9. Listened to Jill Stein speak again :)
  10. They took a picture of everybody
  11. Headed down to FDR Park
  12. Heidi met LBJ’s daughter on the train
  13. Got stuck on the hoity toity delegate train since we couldn’t get off; had to ride it back a stop
  14. Banged on wall
  15. Listened to delegates speak at the stage
  16. Greg Palast spoke
  17. Watched Greg Palast’s new movie
  18. Met him & got my picture with him!
  19. He sat on one of our posters for a bit while we all watched his movie
  20. Rumor started about Bernie so they stopped the movie to address it
  21. Did the death of the DNC march with candles & a coffin
  22. A helicopter started to fly really low since hundreds of us were protesting around the wall & they got scared we were going to do something crazy
  23. Peace and love thing started again
  24. A Bernie delegate was being interviewed; told stories about how the delegates were told to remove one sign, then another, then another; if they didn’t do so they’d be kicked out; if they got up to go to the bathroom or get a snack a Hillary supporter would take their place; the whole convention was staged to make it seem like the democratic party is united when IT IS NOT
  25. Headed back to hotel; had debate with Hillary supporter on the way back

Thursday, July 28, 2016

  1. Got up & had breakfast
  2. Packed up & checked out of the hotel
  3. Headed down to Philly; no Berners on the platform since we just missed the train
  4. Dance party at Thomas Paine Plaza
  5. Saw Debbie again
  6. Listened to various speakers; Hillary supporters there & they spoke & BM4B debated them
  7. One of the BM4B guys got an email from a Hillary supporter who worked for the Pennsylvania government; read the email; horrible horrible email
  8. Left for home
  9. Stopped at Burger King along the way for food
  10. Ran into traffic; didn’t get home until around 7
  11. Sad days ahead

Pictures I’m In

Searching through the internet, pictures of the DNC and protest around it; I’ll keep track of photos I find myself in here:

Why I Became An Independent

I posted on Monday that I have officially changed my party affiliation to Unaffiliated (Independent). I am through with the Democratic Party.

In fact I’m pretty much through with the whole concept of political parties. Why should we label ourselves and put ourselves into boxes? We all do not think alike.

That’s why I really don’t understand the “Vote Blue No Matter Who” movement that some democrats are trying to push. If that’s the case, why should the primaries matter at all? Why vote in them if all candidates representing the Democratic party are equal?

They are NOT equal. For example, Hillary and Bernie are WAYYYYYYYY different. They both have radically different views on a lot of issues. In fact, a lot of Hillary’s views don’t align with the Democratic party at all (ex. she favors trade deals, offshore drilling, fracking, taking money from big interests, war, government surveillance, etc; all of which and more go against who Democrats are supposed to be).

The Democratic party and Debbie Wasserman-Shultz have been completely unfair to Bernie throughout this entire primary. From limiting the number of debates, lining up Super Delegates before a single vote has been cast, sharing campaign offices, joint fundraisers, etc. Hillary has been given every advantage.

I will not just fall in line and vote for Hillary. My vote needs to be earned and she’s no where close to earning mine. In fact Trump is a lot closer. And from what it sounds like, she’s not interested in mine or any other Bernie supporters’ vote. She’s busy sucking up to Bush donors. Democrats compromise everything they stand for in support of Hillary. So many good progressives in the media have lost their credibility by trying to defend her. I don’t get it.

I’m happy that I’ve chosen to leave the DNC corruption. Democrats are in bed with corporations and with friends like that, who needs Republicans? The Democratic Party no longer represents me. I haven’t changed my views. As Reagan once said, “I didn’t leave the Democratic Party. The Party left me.”

Stories Of Flyering Early Voting Poll In Maryland

I never claimed to be a good writer but here it goes…

For the past week I have been flyering around one of the Montgomery County Maryland early voting centers. I did the one at the Silver Spring Civic Center. I was there all this week after work while early voting was happening.

The first day I did it, Monday, I met a really cool older woman who was flyering for Jamie Raskin. She was a very pro Bernie person as well. In fact, she had flyered for him earlier that day. After I was done flyering, I ran home to get my car (I had scootered to work that day). I then went to the Bernie Rockville office to pick up some swag and any materials they had since we were running low. That was a long day. I left for work around 7:30 AM and I didn’t get home until 8:30 PM.

David Throne, Jamie Raskin, Chris van Hollen always had a presence the days I was there. There was even a Trump guy on Wednesday but he didn’t stay very long and he said he was a Democrat. There was always a Hillary supporter there, too except for a few hours on Wednesday when there wasn’t.

Will Jawando’s wife was always there and she was always breaking the rules. They set up lines which us canvassers cannot cross. She was always crossing the line to talk to voters and no one called her out on it. She struck me as very disingenuous. I had met Will Jawando before at one of our MoCo for Bernie meetups. One of our members did his homework and it turned out Will Jawando is a huge Hillary supporter having even gotten money from Hillary. Our member called him out on it but he said he returned the money or some crap which turned out to be false. Anyway, the Jawando’s were bad. They were breaking the rules. His wife kept saying hi to me which was nice and she tried to sway me to vote for him but then I saw the Hillary sticker on her bag. I can’t vote in that election anyway since I’m in district 6.

Yesterday (Thursday) I tried to look up a phone number to call since a lot of the canvassers (including Jawando’s wife) was crossing the line big time but I couldn’t find a number to report it.

The worst day was Tuesday. The DNC guy that was there was very like toolish, if that makes sense. He was all calling me buddy one minute then asking me to do stuff the next minute. He was very pro Hillary. When a few supporters approached, I asked them if they needed any Bernie literature and they said they were very pro Hillary and started to yell at me their reasoning. I couldn’t rebut because the DNC guy was saying “that’s right, I agree, blah blah blah.” So I just had to walk away before I could say my rebuttle which was, “Bernie won’t sacrifice what we want and he won’t start out a compromise with a compromise like Obama does and Hillary will.” The DNC dude even made me take a picture with him, Jamie Raskin, a few other people and the Hillary supporter. Not cool. He was also there yesterday campaigning for Jamie Raskin. I tried to avoid him the best I could.

All week I ran into a good amount of Bernie supporters. I gave them buttons and bumper stickers. They loved them and I loved talking Bernie to the supporters who stopped to talk with me. There were even two people who wanted to volunteer. I gave them a flyer with volunteer information.

Probably my highlight was talking to a woman who told me to give me one good reason why she should vote for Bernie and I said, “he’s anti war, anti TPP, anti free trade, anti Keystone pipeline…” She stopped me there and said, “you had me at anti war.”

The whole week the people flyering around me were heavily Bernie supporters. It was really nice to know I was among like minded individuals.

I was quite nervous the first two days but then New York happened. I had contemplated not going anymore but I know Bernie still needs me and as long as he has a small chance, I’ll be there. On Wednesday and Thursday I got more aggressive and stepped up my game. I approached a lot more people and always smiled and always handed out Bernie info. I wish I was more like the one guy for Jamie Raskin on Tuesday. He would walk up to people, shake their hand, ask them how they were and launch into a whole speech about Jamie Raskin. He was also a Bernie supporter.

Yesterday (Thursday) I had a lot of help. There were like 5 other Bernie supporters there who were flyering with me. They even set up a table. It was very productive. There were a few at the Silver Spring metro, one on the corner, and three of us just walking around.

My favorite part of the day was swapping stories with Brian after we got home. He flyered around two early voting places this week as well.

After working all week doing my full time job and handing out flyers for 2-3 hours each day I’m exhausted. I honestly don’t know how people can have two jobs. But it’s so sad that people have to have two or three jobs just to survive. Another reason why I’m Bernie all the way.

Awesome Things about Bernie Sanders

Here’s a list of some of the awesome things I was able to compile about my favorite (and only) candidate, Bernie Sanders.

  • Longest serving Independent in Congress in history.
  • He calls himself a Democratic Socialist.
  • He knows his facts. He backs up his arguments with facts.
  • He will NOT run as an Independent if he loses the Democratic nomination.
  • He uses Uber, flies coach and is willing to sit in the middle seat, sleeps in cheap Motels across the country.
  • He got 71% of the vote the last time he ran for Congress.
  • He is treated as a fringe figure but he truly is the only serious presidential candidate in the race. He’s the only one with a decent vision for the country and his record indicates he would follow through if elected.
  • He’s never run a negative campaign ad in his life.
  • He voted against DOMA, NAFTA, the Patriot Act, the war in Iraq, the Bush Tax Cuts, and a lot of other bills that were passed that turned out to be huge mistakes proving his judgement and instinct can be trusted and he’s not afraid to fight.
  • He’s for a living wage. If you work 40 hours a week you should not live in poverty.
  • 99% of Sanders campaign contributes have come from small donors. (Less than half of one percent of his donors have given the maximum. Three quarters of his donors give less than $200.)
  • He has a positive favorability rating.

You can’t say those things about anyone else who’s running; including Hillary Clinton.

Bernie Sanders’ Tweets & YouTube Stuff

Here are some of the awesome things Bernie Sanders has tweeted:

  • I’m not running for president because it’s my turn, but because it’s everyone’s turn to live in a nation of hope and opportunity for all. – February 7, 2016
  • I want our country to have the distinction of having the best educated population on earth. – Sept 21, 2015
  • In my view, some of the real heroines in our country today are single moms. – Sept 20, 2015
  • Congress bailed out Wall St. because it was too big to fail. In my view, if a bank is too big to fail, it’s too big to exist. Break ’em up. – Sept 18, 2015
  • It’s time to break up the banks. Their casino-style gambling has helped divert 99 percent of all new income to the top one percent. – Sept 16, 2015
  • Virtually every campaign for president has a super PAC funded by millionaires or billionaires. Not me. – Sept 15, 2015
  • You can’t have it all. You cannot continue to get tax breaks when people across this nation are going hungry. – Sept 12, 2015
  • When Roosevelt ran for reelection, he welcomed the hatred of what he called “the economic royalists.” I’m prepared to do that as well. – July 8, 2015

Here are some awesome YouTube videos for Bernie:

Here’s a bonus article:
Sanders Against The Corporate Media http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2015/08/18/bernie-sanders-is-running-as-much-against-the-corporate-media-as-he-is-against-hillary-clinton/

Not So Good Things About Hillary Clinton

If you know me, you know I Feel The Bern and am a Bernie Sanders supporter to the very end (even going so far as to write his name in if he’s not the Democratic nominee come November). And I know it’s not Bernie’s style to go on the attack as he’s never run a negative campaign ad in his life. But since Hillary is going on the attack against Bernie, I thought it well to attack her a bit.

So here’s a list of stuff I compiled that do not paint Hillary Clinton in a good light. I believe she’s very corrupt, wrong for our country, and here is proof.

Our Biggest Threat

The second Democratic debate happened last Saturday night. The night before, Paris experienced a horrible terrorist attack which had killed 129 people and wounded many more. My thoughts go out to them.

Bernie Sanders was asked specifically if he thought climate change was still our biggest threat and he said YES.

Bernie’s answer is absolutely right. Climate change is still our biggest threat. Obama even got blasted for saying that climate change impacts more people than terrorism. And there’s data to prove it.

Bernie’s plan to combat ISIS is to create a global coalition and let the other countries in the region take care of it; like Iran. Iran is ISIS’ enemy. We have allies in the area that have millions of troops.

The other candidates (including Hillary) have no real plan. In fact Huckabee’s plan is to tear up the Iran nuclear deal. Is he stupid? Iran and ISIS are enemies.

It is very sad what has happened in Paris. And my thoughts do go out to them. But when you tally up deaths from guns in this country (which 129+ people die in four days due to guns in this country) and deaths due to climate change; it’s clear what OUR biggest threats are and they’re not terrorism.

Oh and by the way, if you’re not informed on what is happening in Syria, here’s a cartoon that can explain things to you.

Clinton’s Not-So-Shiny Moments During The First Debate

Thought I’d blog about Hillary Clinton’s not-so-great moments in the first Democratic debate of the 2016 presidential election. The debate took place on October 13, 2015.

  • When discussing banks that are too big to fail, Bernie Sanders said his plan was to break up the big banks. Anderson Cooper then asked Hillary Clinton how her plan was better. She said:

    …The plan that I have put forward would actually empower regulators to break up big banks if we thought they posed a risk.

    If they posed a risk? How about now? The largest five banks control 45% of the industry’s total assets!

  • After Bernie Sanders brought up the deregulation that happened under the Clinton administration and how we need to break the big banks up, Anderson Cooper asked Hillary Clinton to respond. She responded by saying:

    I represented Wall Street, as a senator from New York, and I went to Wall Street in December of 2007 — before the big crash that we had — and I basically said, “cut it out! Quit foreclosing on homes! Quit engaging in these kinds of speculative behaviors.”

    Clearly that worked.

  • When Anderson Cooper asked how would a Hillary Clinton administration not be a third term from President Obama, Hillary Clinton responded by saying:

    Well, I think that’s pretty obvious. I think being the first woman president would be quite a change from the presidents we’ve had up until this point, including President Obama.

    Wow, that is new!

  • Anderson Cooper asked if Hillary Clinton regretted her vote on the Patriot Act of 2001 (you know, the one that took away liberties such as habeas corpus, Hillary Clinton said this:

    No, I don’t. I think it was necessary to make sure that we were able after 9/11 to put in place the security that we needed.

    Aww, come on, really?

  • When talking about the DREAM act and instate tuition for undocumented immigrants, Anderson Cooper asked where Hillary Clinton stood on providing it since both Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley are in for it. She said this:

    My plan would support any state that takes that position, and would work with those states and encourage more states to do the same thing.

    Anderson Cooper then interjected and asked if she believed undocument immigrants should get instate college tuition, she replied:

    …If their states agree, then we want more states to do the same thing.

    So she’s for STATES RIGHTS? WTF?

  • Anderson Cooper said Hillary Clinton plead guilty to being kind of moderate and center and asked her if she changed her identity depending on who she was talking to. She replied:

    No. I think that, like most people that I know, I have a range of views, but they are rooted in my values and my experience.

    A “range of views?” Clearly, yes, her views are whatever is politically popular at the time. She helped negotiate the TPP and is now against it. She also switched her position on the Keystone XL Pipeline, free college tuition, gay marriage… the list goes on.

  • When Martin O’Malley said Hillary Clinton was against Glass-Steagall, Hillary Clinton responded with this:

    Well, you know, everybody on this stage has changed a position or two.

    How original. And that came from a real presidential candidate!

The full transcript can be found at the Washington Post’s website. Please note that it is subject to change since big media has been changing things all over the internet since the debate. Their online polling said Bernie Sanders won, focus groups said Bernie Sanders won, he got the most google searches, the most followers on social media; yet all the news outlets claim Hillary Clinton won.