Pokemon, Privilege, and Other People’s Problems

if you’re on social media (of course you’re on social media) you have no doubt seen the convergence of the two streams of news the past 72 hours. One, of course, is the week’s long plunge back into the national debate on police violence, Black Lives Matter, and America’s love/hate relationship with violence. The other is Pokemon Go, the mobile game being heralded as a game changer and as the best game ever (one hopes by people who have limited experience with games).

The coming together of these two is not of the peanut butter and chocolate variety, but rather more like toothpaste and pickle juice in that I’ve noticed it leaves a bad taste in a lot of peoples’ mouths. Specifically there are numerous posts floating around to the effect of  (paraphrasing here since I don’t want to call anyone in particular out) “Pokemon Go is awesome and it’s awesome to see posts from people just having fun and not worrying about the bad stuff that’s happening in the world.”

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The Nader fallacy (or thoughts on being a ‘good’ Democrat)

I have no idea how many of these posts I’ll end up making but I want to put a standard disclaimer out there for at least the first few to clear up any misconceptions. I am not, and have not been since the 1998 midterms, an active member of either of the two major political parties. Since the 2000 election I have not voted for either one of the major party candidates, and do not see myself doing so this year regardless of who it is (this includes Sanders though that is terribly unlikely at this juncture). I say this to preface that I don’t have a dog in the (two party) fight.

So right off the bat there are lots of places on the web that show why this is bullshit (though you do have to have a basic understanding of how electoral math works, which seems to be a problem for a lot of people these days) but I favor this DailyKos one because it brings together a lot of the data scattered around elsewhere. But long story short is that Nader didn’t cost Gore the election, Gore being a shitty candidate that wasn’t able to keep a large number of Clinton voters from 1996 from voting Bush did.

This matters now because a lot of big D Democrats are trying to tell other Democrats and independents who support Sanders that if they don’t vote for Hillary, or if they vote for Sanders as write-in or third party or whatever then they’re going to cost Hillary the election. So that’s blatantly poppycock.

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