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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 8/28/19

DNC's Outrageous Debate Poll Policy

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Getting a spot at the Democratic debates just got harder The Democratic National Committee (DNC) just changed the rules for 2020 candidates hoping to get onstage for the September debate. Not everyone is happy.
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It looks like the DNC's poll policy will keep Tulsi Gabbard and Tom Steyer out of the third debate.

That is outrageous. On its face, the policy of requiring candidates to achieve two percent in polls to show their viability as candidates is a bottom-up approach that seems fair. But it is fatally flawed.

The whole poll policy hands the process of how to poll and who to include in polls to the polling organizations, many of them mainstream media owned by multi-billion dollar corporations. For example, although Senator Mike Gravel raised over 67,000 donations he was not allowed in the second debate because he had not met the criteria in enough polls. The problem was, not all pollsters including Gravel in their polls at all.

That alone is a reason not to consider poll results as a condition for eligibility to participate in debates. If the DNC required pollsters to include all declared candidates in their polls, it might start to look kosher. But imagine, if a private company was given the responsibility of counting votes That would be ridiculous too. Oh, wait that's what most elections do, by trusting the electronic technology currently in use.

Consider that Tulsi Gabbard reports she has achieved at least two percent in 26 polls. But only two of them have met the DNC's criteria. Gabbard notes that "Many of the uncertified polls, including those conducted by highly reputable organizations such as The Economist and the Boston Globe, are ranked by Real Clear Politics and FiveThirtyEight as more accurate than some DNC "certified" polls."

Now you could say that all candidates have had to deal with the same rules, But those rules are wrong and should not exist at all.

The DNC is right to seek bottom-up ways to show candidate viability. And the number of donors works for me. But polls are not really bottom-up. They are run by parties with special interests and conflicts of interest. They are decided by a handful of powerful people. And polls are notoriously unreliable.

There are better ways to create a formula for assessing eligibility and there are some bad ones. For example, looking at number of social media followers-- Twitter or Facebook-- is a bad way, because it is possible to set up fake accounts. It's said that millions of Trump's Twitter followers are fake.

One reasonable approach might be to look at number of campaign volunteers.

Another way is to assess crowd size. This can be quantified. I'm not sure Hillary would have made the debates if crowd size was considered. I'm not sure Joe Biden would.

Another way to assess the bottom-up, crowd supported power of a candidate's campaign would be to look at the percentage of donations under $100. If a candidate has a higher ratio of donations under $100 then the candidate has a bigger potential for receiving continued support than a candidate who has maxed out.

There are probably other ways as well. They should be used to replace the outrageous use of polls.

 

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Rob Kall Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Rob Kall is an award winning journalist, inventor, software architect, connector and visionary. His work and his writing have been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, ABC, the HuffingtonPost, Success, Discover and other media. 

He is the author of The Bottom-up Revolution; Mastering the Emerging World of Connectivity scheduled for release May 22, 2019

He's given talks and workshops to Fortune 500 execs and national medical and psychological organizations, and pioneered first-of-their-kind conferences in Positive Psychology, Brain Science and Story. He hosts some of the world's smartest, most interesting and powerful people on his Bottom Up Radio Show, and founded and publishes one of the top Google- ranked progressive news and opinion sites, OpEdNews.com

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Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind.  Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives  one person at a time was too slow, he founded Opednews.com-- which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big)  to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, debillionairizing the planet and the Psychopathy Defense and Optimization Project. 

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We knew the DNC and the MIC would not want a candidate who wouldn't support the "Forever Wars" --- didn't we? Tulsi has (unfortunately) said she won't run third party. I predict lower voter turn out. I think I'm going to skip the vote, it has become an exercise in frustration.

Submitted on Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019 at 6:40:13 PM

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This is horrible enough news to make me think of going back to Belgium where lost my wife May-5-2017. Watching stuff from there from July 2011 to now was bad enough. It's worse now for nothing can be done.

Submitted on Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019 at 6:59:48 PM

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2016 Deja Vu all over again.

Brace yourselves to be re-trumped.

Then it's Bye, Bye, American Pie.

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The pie is not in the sky.

It's baking in Hell.

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The way to sort out the candidates is called primaries and caucuses. Prior to at least Super Tuesday, the DNC should keep it hands off the entire process of deciding which candidates are "viable."

Polls measure nothing more than name recognition. And the media feeds off them, giving more air time to the people "winning" the polls, which in turn increases their name recognition. It's rare when the MSM actually does a story on issues and candidate positions.

Submitted on Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019 at 7:26:42 PM

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Listen to my fellow Maine neighbor. He knows his s--t.

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Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 4:10:32 PM

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Rob, why do you persist in claiming that the DNC is not a criminal organization? I'm a rocket scientist and maybe you'll listen, Rob. You are a lemming going over the cliff and complaining about a fixed election. You are the very definition of insane. Bernie proved that the DNC is crooked. I accept that condition. Vote Green, or something else!

Submitted on Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019 at 8:46:10 PM

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Thank you. I've been trying to get that message across on this site and it falls on deaf ears.

When your house is engulfed in flames and all the first floor escape roots are blocked your best bet is to jump from what ever window you have access to. That's how I look at jumping to the Green Party. They are the only viable escape route I see at this point. So people are afraid of what the outcome of abandoning the dismal Dems will be. At this point, they're choosing to remain in the burning house rather than take a chance on the only escape which may look risky, but it beats being burned alive.

All the Green Party really needs at this point is enough people to make it a force to be reckoned with. The infrastructure is already in place.

WHAT ARE YOU PEOPLE WAITING FOR?

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when we have ranked choice voting, which has begun to be used in a few places, it will be the time to vote Green. I voted Green in 2016 and I now regret it. I am very aware of the problems with the Democratic party but I won't be risking another four years of Trump.

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Jill Stein did not give us Donald Trump. The establishment did. And they'll do it again without remorse rather than allow any candidate they don't approve of having a chance to be elected. That's how depraved they are. I would rather stay home than vote Democrat.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 1:00:40 AM

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"...but I won't be risking another four years of Trump."

I voted Green three times and am also now not sure that I want to risk four more years of Trump, but I also consider that every time an election comes up we tend to think that it's the most momentous event ever and that we must avert at all costs having the wrong party elected. Logically that is unlikely, and I think it is this time too. Take climate ("Please!"): the likely very bad things to come have been building up for a long time, and four more years of Trump is probably not going to change things much one way or the other, and, similarly, having someone like Biden or Harris is not likely to make things better. And I think similar cases can be made for problems of racism, inequality, and most other issues. Perhaps a Biden would be marginally better at letting more migrants in, if that's what you want, but I wouldn't count on it, given the Democrats' previous record.

It's hard sometimes to take the long view when it feels like the house is on fire, but it still seems better, in the absence of being able to make real significant change by doing so, to vote the lesser of two evils when, by sticking to your guns, you could vote for someone whose principles you share.

That said, I personally don't know at this time what I will do in this regard. For me it's complicated by my impression of the Green party where I live, which seems rather incompetent and disorganized, and, anyway, I was pretty p.o.d at the way Stein hopped right on the Russia-gate train after the 2016 election.

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The same way the mainstream gets to be "authoritative" on what speech gets its say on social media, the mainstream is being held up as "authoritative" on what candidates get proper promotion.

These "polls" are just a fail-safe for the scam. This had to be obvious to everyone some time ago.

You're all now being denied a fair election at every level, and there's not really any concerted effort to hide that fact. They're ripping you off and sticking a finger in your eye while they do it. Time to storm the castle. There's no other option.

Submitted on Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019 at 10:31:55 PM

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Bravo, D.A. Seems that most of us should agree.

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"It looks like the DNC's poll policy will keep Tulsi Gabbard and Tom Steyer out of the third debate. That is outrageous."

Yes, outrageous but predictable. Why is anyone surprised? Why are people wasting time trying to rehabilitate a party which has irreversibly gone to the dark side?

Submitted on Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019 at 10:57:49 PM

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I've been working for Tulsi, so I am really depressed about this. The only hope is that so many people discovered her in the first two debates that there may be a public stink if she is eliminated. sure, it's rigged. but now the DNC has announced, WE ARE RIGGING THE ELECTION AGAIN.

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That's Pelosi - obviously, she's "too timid to impeach" and that makes the Democrats look "weak and indecisive" - "hard chargers" like Tulsi, Sanders, and Warren, aren't going to "make a big difference" as long as the Republicans, either as the majority or the minority "are in power".

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These debates really should be completely open to all candidates, as a classic service to the public. There should be no interference in that process, and no control given to any party brass or corporate entity.

Anything else is just dishonest.

Submitted on Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019 at 11:39:00 PM

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Remember in 2012 when Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala were tied to a chair for 8 hours to keep them from entering the debate hall? Welcome to democracy in the US.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 12:57:32 AM

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Yup. The number of such incidents has been steadily increasing, and they're right out in the open, yet still, there's no outcry. It's bizarre. The masses are seriously distracted. If it doesn't just pop out in front of them on their phones, they notice virtually nothing now.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 1:19:47 AM

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Looks like Orwell and Huxley were both right.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 1:27:38 AM

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What an insult to our intelligence. The DNC does not deserve any kind of respect. Shut them down at long last.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 6:44:38 AM

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It's a wonder they didn't set their criteria including at least ten individual donations from Billionaires, at least 1 separate donation from each of the following areas: insurance industry, banking industry, fossil fuel industry, military-industrial complex, the NRA, Israel, any other special interest group on the DNC approved list.

In addition to the above an approval rating of 2.0 or higher in 4 opinion polls approved by the DNC, to be determined later. A poll must include only those who state they have been getting their news from CNN, MSNBC, or other MSM sources in consort with the DNC.

Such criteria would eliminate Sanders, the only candidate threatening the DNC's choice of Harris-Warren.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 9:54:04 AM

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Chris Hedges was right back at the winter soldiers gathering in DC that "progressive change" will not come through the Democratic Party who sold US out.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 2:42:25 PM

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I was there for that action. It was amazing.

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Good for you. Still share Michael Prsyner"s video from there now then.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 4:53:16 PM

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The DNC is trying to appear "fair," but as we all know, the scales are being tipped toward Bidden. And keeping out "climate change" as a debate topic to keep the Democratic Platform "safe" and "not controversial" is no surprise. After all both parties are beholden to corporate fossil fuel money. Hence Bidden saying he has "middle ground approach" to climate change. He is announcing compromise or capitulating without a fight. Can't alienate all those PAC and corporate campaign donors. Ah, the good old "Golden Rule" is a work again. "Them that has the gold, write the rules." "We can do better" Kerry, "Incremental change." "Better together" Hillary. Mediocreism, wishy-washy is not going to sell. What do Democrats stand for? What is their vision? We don't need "Republican lite."

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 4:12:56 PM

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Jim Thomas

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(Member since Jan 15, 2013), 3 fans, 296 comments
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There is no rational reason to believe that the Democratic Party is going to support progressive policies. It has not done so since the 1960s. The adoption of right wing policies was completely solidified by the Clinton administration. At this point I do not think meaningful change can be effected by our corrupt electoral/political process. We are not given the opportunity to vote for progressive candidates (with a few exceptions at the Congressional level). I will not vote for an establishment candidate just because he or she is a member of the Democratic Party. I have never voted for a Republican at the national level and cannot imagine doing so in the future. I believe it is time to show up at the polling places and protest the corrupt system and the lack of democracy in this Country.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 6:36:06 PM

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Michael Dewey

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You sum it all up very well. Personally figure all we can do is wait for the house of cards to finally crash bringing down enough walls in people, who still support it, the people get what ever we want.

Submitted on Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 at 7:44:46 PM

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