DNC Day 3: Nader Rally

Well, the laws of probability had to eventually come to fruition, and for one night of the convention, I decided to have an “alternate night.” I headed to the Ralph Nader “Open the Debates” rally at U of D, which was quite the spectacle. It was at times entertaining, frustrating, bizarre, and exciting. It cost 12 dollars to enter, which was somewhere between a few thousand dollars and a few hundred thousand less than it takes to get in the DNC. I was on the prowl for South Asians, though it seemed that by the time I had arrived most people had already settled in their seats (Nader rallies are not for those with short attention spans, and they are more like performances as opposed to the ‘meeting’ feeling of a convention).naderden.jpg

I was able to catch a glimpse of Ralph at the start of the convention, which was a good thing seeing as though some uncontrollable circumstances prevented me from seeing his final speech. Unlike the DNC or RNC, time management was not in high demand at the rally. I did, however, see Cindy Sheehan, the MC, and the former lead singer of the Dead Kennedys give speeches generally trashing both parties for their many “similarities.” On a slightly more substantive note, Bob Barr and Cynthia McKinney sent taped videos offering their critiques of the establishment and their arguments for opening the Presidential Debates to 3rd party candidates, which was the stated purpose of the rally.

I met one South Asian vendor, Nick Bygon, who was selling black Ralph Nader “rebel” t-shirts in the mold of Obama’s white “hope” t-shirts. Bygon, a student at community college, told me he supports Nader because he believes in a cause “greater than himself,” and that there’s little difference between the two major parties. He cited the example of Afghanistan, saying that Obama’s pledge to increase troop levels showed that he really was no different than McCain when it came to “warmongering.” When asked about the accusation that Nader stole voters from Obama, he replied that Nader supporters would never have voted for Obama or McCain. (He might be interested in this article). He said he first supported Nader in 2000 and has been a major fan ever since.

Cindy Sheehan spoke about the war, Jello Biafra spoke about torture, and Sean Penn gave a highly convoluted and confused speech about terrorism. There were some really weird musicians and some generally bizarre protesters. The impression and general feeling of the audience was: don’t tell Ralph not to run! The two major parties are the exact same! Anyone who truly believes the two parties are the same, has obviously not looked at recent Supreme Court appointees, the candidates’ plans for Iraq, their tax plans, and their healthcare plans. And while I was on the prowl for South Asians, and maybe I was just looking in the wrong sections of the crowd, I have a theory about why there might not be a large amount of South Asian Nader supporters. The extremely diverse group of people attending Nader rallies gushes at the prospect of socialism, single-payer healthcare, high taxes, and increased government. They are shining idealists, fighting for a socialist ideal they have never experienced in the very free and capitalist state of the United States. Many South Asian immigrants, on the other hand, have experienced the full brunt of government socialism, spending, and ambitious programs (see India up to ’91) in their countries of origin, and are thus wary of unbridled government expansion. They have found that good old balanced and centrist economic pragmatism works, whether here or there, and hey – this guy says his whole theory of economics is “pragmatism.”

22 thoughts on “DNC Day 3: Nader Rally

  1. Many South Asian immigrants, on the other hand, have experienced the full brunt of government socialism, spending, and ambitious programs (see India up to ‘91) in their countries of origin, and are thus wary of unbridled government expansion.

    There may be an element of truth to some of these characterizations, but the overall thrust of the descriptions are just off. You need to look at this stuff in detail. India and Pakistan have never been socialist (state capitalism for India for a time, state-directed economy with the military and bureaucracy coming to dominate in Pakistan). India’s economic programme actually shifted in 1980, not 1991, with Indira Gandhi’s government promoting pro-rich (as opposed to pro-market) policies, and the ideological shift to neoliberal ideology was completed/sustained from 1991 on. but the government is still HEAVILY involved in the Indian economy – ask pretty much any business journalist who covers real estate, land, SEZs, etc. Pakistan pioneered state-directed export driven economic growth under Ayub (albeit with strong assistance), but the policy regime failed for reasons that I haven’t come to a conclusion on (some argue a mismatch between social structure and the centralized state, others point to the inevitability of collapse given the East Pakistan / West Pakistan split, and there are other arguments). And of course Sri Lanka (too complicated), Nepal (don’t know enough), Bangladesh (don’t know enough), Bhutan (no nothing), the Maldives (no less than nothing except that an election’s coming up) and whatever other South Asian countries you want to include have their own dynamics at play.

    On the flipside, the United States is far from not having spending and ambitious programmes. Setting aside the fact that Social Security is a 60 year old sustained pension programme that is wildly popular and takes the lion’s share of government revenues, what is distinctive about the United States compared to some European counries is not a low tax rate (if you combine state, local, and federal, it’s actually pretty comparable I think, though someone else would have to back me up on that) – but that an inordinate amount of funding goes to government programmes – namely military, social security, and medicare/medicaid. What the U.S. government does poorly is manage its finances and construct rational systems for distributing them – and it tilts the spending in particular directions, like where military bases are or what companies are lobbying for defense contracts or for the particular constitutencies of the governing coalition. But although Americans like to hate on government ideologically, when it comes to specific programmes, they’re actually fairly likely to support universal social welfare programmes – just not means tested ones like the former AFDC (i.e. welfare). Except, I guess, for veterans.

    Further, the only exposure I really ever had in the U.S. to the the idea that communism could be taken seriously (aside from all the red-baiters around) was through my family. This kind of thing is far more likely in parts of the Indian diaspora (even outside of mallus and bongs ;) as well as Latinos, Chicanos, and other immigrant communities because they are raised outside the United States and are exposed to a more diverse ideological spectrum. This is simply not the case for most Americans.

    Beyond this, there is an element of diversity to the people you’re describing. If by “many South Asian immigrants” you mean Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, you’ll get one read; if you mean mallu nurses, you’ll get another; if you mean Gujarati motel owners, you’ll get another; if you mean Bangladeshi low wage workers, you’ll get another; if you mean 2nd generation NGO / activist types you’ll get another; if you mean 2nd generation investment banker types, you’ll get another, etc.

    I think what is more likely than the characterization you made is that people like me who MIGHT have been persuaded by Nader have moved in other directions because he has failed at party building, doesn’t seem to be attempting to do it this time, and there are race differences in radical activism as well as in mainstream politics in terms of where people will end up. Plus the guy’s been around for a while. Why would i support Nader, who’s of Lebanese descent but doesn’t seem to lift a finger to address mass deportations (as far as I know – please correct if I’m wrong), who has referred to issues of sexuality and gender as “gonadal politics” and who is rumoured to have financial ties and has established political ties with rightwing republicans when i could just as easily support cynthia mckinney or roger calero or whoever else?

    The impression and general feeling of the audience was: don’t tell Ralph not to run! The two major parties are the exact same! Anyone who truly believes the two parties are the same, has obviously not looked at recent Supreme Court appointees, the candidates’ plans for Iraq, their tax plans, and their healthcare plans.

    As for the two major parties – I’ll save my discourse on the shell game that is hegemony for another day because if you’ve made it this far, you already deserve a cookie. (that means sorry :) all I can say is – if you vote for a third party in a swing state and you actually don’t fear the republicans, you’re a committed but unstrategic radical or a christian fundamentalist or run a private contractor to iraq or work for an oil company. but you’re equally a sucker, unless you REALLY REALLY beleive in the mawkish agendas these two parties come up with (both of which are scary if you care about, say, Paksitani hospitals being bombed into oblivion or 10-12 million or however many it is undocumented people being treated like human beings), if you vote for one of these two parties in a state whose results won’t determine whether McCain or Obama wins the general election.

    And most of them- particularly where the largest concentrations of desis are – are currently not swing states

    Moreover, the real solution to this is to have instant run off voting – which is so obvious, and yet will take an inordinate struggle to get through, like everything else in the u.s.

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  3. They are shining idealists, fighting for a socialist ideal they have never experienced in the very free and capitalist state of the United States.

    I think you pretty much nailed it. These are genuinely nice folks who do not get it when it comes to pragmatism. I attended the US social forum sometimes back and the place too was full of the kind of people you describe. People who would usually be found in the more bohemian parts of town. And yes, Nader was a very popular figure at the forum despite not being there. Taking this further though, I would say that the fringe extreme right and left serve a good purpose by bringing to the front issues which the main stream parties would not start talking about.

  4. While I’ll admit Nadar attracks a certain form of misfit, this article completely missage the boat regarding Nadar’s platform and is standard status-quo attacking that lacks any substance. Yes there are minor differences in the two controlling parties, but the common themes are a medical system still run by insrance companies for profit, a miltary industrial complex where we account for 1/2 of worlds miltary budget, and staying in Iraq longer than neccessary. Yes the supreme court appointees are different, but they don’t write the laws, just interpret them. Roe vs. Wade goes to the states if repealed, which never will happen anyway. That’s a big political football. The similiarities are huger in that the govt works for corporate interests primarily with equates to short-term profit for the few when either party is in controll. Ralph isn’t for neccessarily bigger Govt., just better Govt. for the majority. He’s not adgainst bussiness, but fair and ethical bussiness. His policies are well thought out and will be cost nuetral. He is for fiscal responibility which neither party has achieved when you exclude to stock market driven years of the late 90s (I love the way the Clintons tell you the stock market buble that occured on their watch was a good thing.) A mix of Socialism and Capitalism works awefully well in Europe. Time we progress as a nation, as a people and put short-term interests and fears aside and get this great country of ours moving foward again, not backwards. And get our democracy back. This is what Ralph is about. Which is why I support him.

  5. 4 · Bernie said

    A mix of Socialism and Capitalism works awefully well in Europe.

    I think many economists would agree with the statement that European welfare states support an incredibly high living standards but most would not agree that this model is sustainable. That’s the beef.

  6. America actually does have many flourishing socialist institutions….

    The Public Library System Parks and Recreation Departments Police Forces The Military Firefighters among others….

    The funny thing is…..Americans keep getting convinced that Socialism and Communism “does not work” when it is actually in effect and very successful all around them.

    But, America and Americans do need to define what is social and what is not….to prevent corruption….and example would be recent Bank catastrophies….when the government feels compelled to provide a bailout (socialism) when the big-wigs that raked in all the profits from previous years contribute nothing to save their own private institution.

  7. They are shining idealists, fighting for a socialist ideal they have never experienced in the very free and capitalist state of the United States. Many South Asian immigrants, on the other hand, have experienced the full brunt of government socialism, spending, and ambitious programs (see India up to ‘91) in their countries of origin, and are thus wary of unbridled government expansion.

    !!!

    M. Nam

  8. Anyone who truly believes the two parties are the same, has obviously not looked at recent Supreme Court appointees, the candidates’ plans for Iraq, their tax plans, and their healthcare plans.

    Energetic blogging Ravi.

    Having said that, I don’t think each party is a carbon copy of each other, though in many aspects how they behave as organizations on the fundamentals of governance is pretty similar. I think people frustrated with the two party system may lump it under the “both parties are the same” and that sentiment shouldn’t be disregarded. Over the long run (not just today), parties generally try to coopt the populist stance and take advantage of it, espeically when the other party is in power. When it comes to a choice between a popular decision vs. say a more well thought long term decision, neither party is capable of doing so as the system itself does not have any incentives for it. It’s just like going negative in the campaigns. While people and politicans complain about partisanship, it does appear that one of the tactics that works well is doing exactly that. This is why you’ll see shifts in party policies over a period of time. Either party today may make a stand, which few years down the line can be diametrically opposite. Parties will try to ride the wave of populism, “ideals” be damned if it means you won’t get elected. It’s a fine balancing act between those you know will give a vote automatically (which means they don’t have to work for it) vs. those that aren’t sold it (generally the Center right/left).

    From a nuts and bolts perspective, the Republican congress/Presidency, based upon their “principles” should have reduced spending, but it has ballooned. While the wars to account for it, in general, the government has done a crappy job of executing public funds for projects that will yield returns and create revenue (again, I’ll quote Mark Cuban’s idea of no taxes for a small business with less than 25 people. Why kill a business off in it’s infancy with taxes, while you could let it grow, still tax on personal income, and hopefully get more revenue and larger yields down the line.)

    Similarly, the Democrats have been in congress for two years now, but from a governance perspective, not much as shifted. Sure, people they want for the Supreme Court, the wars, and tax plans are different. Those are staple issues that both parties can always fall back on for support and sound bites.

    I’ve noticed this at state level and the federal level, but IMHO, the country always seems to be best off when opposite parties control the executive branch and legislature. The check and balance of having opposite parties in power seems to keep the bullshit either sell to a minimum has they have to negotiate, not simply run amok with the public’s trust/treasury.

    The two presidents considered widely successful by the public in the past three decades are Reagan and Clinton. Both, I believe had the other party in power in congress for most of their tenure. I’m only using the last 30 years as it seems how the house has operated has changed over time, specifically in the 70s.

    Again, one shouldn’t disregard the notion that people have when they say the parties are they same. They aren’t – but in a two party system, each has to constantly jockey to occupy the position opposite of the other (or coopt a popular idea before the other does) in order to stay in power, especially for house members that are on a 2 year cycle.

  9. if you vote for a third party in a swing state and you actually don’t fear the republicans, you’re a committed but unstrategic radical or a christian fundamentalist or run a private contractor to iraq or work for an oil company. but you’re equally a sucker, unless you REALLY REALLY beleive in the mawkish agendas these two parties come up with (both of which are scary if you care about, say, Paksitani hospitals being bombed into oblivion or 10-12 million or however many it is undocumented people being treated like human beings), if you vote for one of these two parties in a state whose results won’t determine whether McCain or Obama wins the general election.

    you, Huntington, Bernie Lewis and Fouad Ajami get together for backgammon on Wednesdays, right? Or so i would think with the massive generalizations and examples of voter stereotypes you so freely deploy in your screed against the dumdum americans who think (in the matrix no doubt) that they have two appreciably different candidates or the other dumdum americans who think that their one vote is significant (or must I do the math for ya?).

    Ravi is right in saying that desi immigrants would be wary of any hints of market altering government intervention, because they are working (to feed/clothe/home themselves/family etc.) and would like to continue making a life they don’t feel is possible back in desh.

    As to the desi representation at the Nader event, one can find all sorts of sub-cultures (in music especially!) where desis are not well represented. This would have, IMO, nothing to do with any group proclivities towards economic suicide, willingness to bolster foreign despots, general disregard of the Constitution, tendencies to armchair-argue events in abstract…etc. What’s really funny is that Nader is not only the father of class-actions but also the greatest promulgator of consumer rights (which curiously never extended to citizen oversight of environmental agencies).

  10. 6 · Vedauwoo said

    edauwoo

    Socialism != Communism. Do not conflate the two. Americans banned Communism and it worked out pretty well. Thee harmful effects of anti-communism are overrated as well — the golden age of Hollywood continued to flourish at the same time as the blacklists (which are considered to epitomize the harm caused by McCarthyism). We could do with a good dose of anti-communism in India.

    Also, if you look into your examples, you will find private enterprise behind all of them. The public library system was started by Carnegie Mellon.

    Many of the militias (which later formed the military) were privately raised. So were may of the fire brigades.

    Public – private partnership has been at the crux of many of America’s greatest accomplishments.

    True this too is socialism, but it is not how socialism is portrayed today in the US. The reason socialism has become a bad word is because it has become too closely associated with an all encompassing government — government control becomes a silver bullet for all problems.

    And if it is continued to be framed in such a manner, the people are right to regard it as something that does not work (since it inevitability leads to cronyism, irrespective of the party — Tammny Hall was democratic after all).

  11. And while I was on the prowl for South Asians, and maybe I was just looking in the wrong sections of the crowd, I have a theory about why there might not be a large amount of South Asian Nader supporters. The extremely diverse group of people attending Nader rallies gushes at the prospect of socialism, single-payer healthcare, high taxes, and increased government. They are shining idealists, fighting for a socialist ideal they have never experienced in the very free and capitalist state of the United States.

    I don’t understand why advocates of the “two party” system insist on viewing the world through dualistic blinders. We are not limited to “either/or” solutions to the problems of the world. Some problems are best solved by the market, others through a centralized top-down approach, still others through decentralized local community efforts, some through individual action or any combination thereof.

    One no, many yeses.” Let’s break out of these limited worldviews and put our imaginations to use, shall we?

  12. Some problems are best solved by the market, others through a centralized top-down approach, still others through decentralized local community efforts, some through individual action or any combination thereof.

    But who gets to make the decision as to which approach to be used when and how resources will be distributed across different problems?

    M. Nam

  13. 12 · MoorNam said

    But who gets to make the decision as to which approach to be used when and how resources will be distributed across different problems?

    Me, of course. ;-) (But seriously, I am in favor of fluid, decentralized decision-making structures, and I think we’re headed in that direction, over the long term, whether anybody likes it or not. That’s why I pay more attention to local races than the big party convention farces.)

  14. fluid, decentralized decision-making structures, and I think we’re headed in that direction, over the long term,

    In the long term, we’re all dead. Or so I’ve heard…

    In the short to medium term, we’re headed towards centralized, static decision making structures (be it raising federal/capital gains taxes, universal healthcare, universal child care etc etc) whereby all decisions will be made in Washington DC.

    M. Nam

  15. you, Huntington, Bernie Lewis and Fouad Ajami get together for backgammon on Wednesdays, right? Or so i would think with the massive generalizations and examples of voter stereotypes you so freely deploy in your screed against the dumdum americans who think (in the matrix no doubt) that they have two appreciably different candidates or the other dumdum americans who think that their one vote is significant (or must I do the math for ya?).

    It’s a strange conclusion to draw from the strategy I laid out (again) to say that I don’t believe there are any appreciable differences between the candidates or party. If that were the case, wouldn’t I be advocating ALL voters to vote for a third party? And yes, voters are ill-informed – not because they’re stupid people, but because that’s how hegemony functions, because people dont’ have much time, because they get bought off through political rents, and because of myriad other reasons. That doesn’t mean I think that it’s smart to “believe” in a Democratic agenda that is emphasizing “smart” imperialism over stupid imperialism.

    Ravi is right in saying that desi immigrants would be wary of any hints of market altering government intervention, because they are working (to feed/clothe/home themselves/family etc.) and would like to continue making a life they don’t feel is possible back in desh.

    Okay since apparently we’re trading in generalizations despite both of our criticisms of them, here’s a thought experiment – is the average White working class person or average South Asian working class person in the u.s. more likely to be accommadating to socialism, strikes, and other anti-establishment activities? Is the average desi upper class person more or less likely than the average upper class white person in the u.s. to be accommodating to ideas like anti-imperialism, anti-zionism, or marxism? Again, these are vast generalizations – and the answers are complex, but I don’t think that the straightforward characterizations made by Ravi (and reinforced by you) are on the right track.

  16. i’m sorta with dr a on this. ever since i met black south africans who weren’t so opposed to apartheid and chastised me for criticizing Buthelezi, I’ve been very careful about drawing conclusions. the oppressed often have a different relationship with their oppression than we think they should. there’s a reason machiavelli warned future dictators that the goodwill of the people is their most valuable resource.

  17. 14 · MoorNam said

    In the short to medium term, we’re headed towards centralized, static decision making structures (be it raising federal/capital gains taxes, universal healthcare, universal child care etc etc) whereby all decisions will be made in Washington DC.

    dont worry, moornam. just like the bush admin spent profligately and increased the deficit in order to speed up the forthcoming libertarian revolution (and i am sure you will agree that their overextending on wiretapping, egregious privacy violations and torture was to the same end), barack’s socialized medicine plan is only to demonstrate that we will all be better off under moron paul’s fend-for-yourself healthcare plan (but i am sure that as president, he will deliver all american babies for free).

  18. 16 · Manju said

    i’m sorta with dr a on this. ever since i met black south africans who weren’t so opposed to apartheid and chastised me for criticizing Buthelezi, I’ve been very careful about drawing conclusions. the oppressed often have a different relationship with their oppression than we think they should. there’s a reason machiavelli warned future dictators that the goodwill of the people is their most valuable resource.

    with friends like these…what exactly did I say that you agreed with? That hegemony exists and ruling elites attempt to convince people that the status quo is in their interests? And you choose to link this to an argument based on anecdotal encounter with Black South Africans that implies that there are some who supported the apartheid regime? Not exactly good faith, but good trolling ;)

    Go read up on your Gramsci; the new prince is better than the old one.

  19. 18 · Dr AmNonymous said

    with friends like these…what exactly did I say that you agreed with? That hegemony exists and ruling elites attempt to convince people that the status quo is in their interests? And you choose to link this to an argument based on anecdotal encounter with Black South Africans that implies that there are some who supported the apartheid regime? Not exactly good faith, but good trolling ;)

    well, if you want stats take abortion. now, i’m more or less aligned with the feminists on this one, as i see abortion as a matter of individual autonomy and its illegality as a remnant of the patriarchy. but stats show women favor abortion only about 58-42%. that’s a pretty significant minorty. do they hate themselves? are they anti-women as some feminists are complaining about palin.

    or do they just see the world thru a differnt paradigm. is it so hard to see a feminist justification for the pro-life position, as fetus become women too?

    sure, hegemony may partially explain why some cubans love castro and communism, why stalin and mao and remain popular in some quaters, why indians support socialism. but over reliance on hegemony arguments is one of the reasons communism descended into an orwellian nightmare. opinions were treated as facts and squashing dissent thus justified. politcs is not an exact science, its more like stock-picking where facts create parameters but within those parameters there are only degress of certainty. so i’m never really surprsed when peoples opinons on what they consider their self interst appear to contradict what I think is really best for them.

  20. hegemony arguments is one of the reasons communism descended into an orwellian nightmare. opinions were treated as facts and squashing dissent thus justified.

    This is basically the opposite of what I understand hegemony to mean in contemporary America. It means the control of public opinion (esp through the media) and thereby the creation of a real “choice” but a meaningless one whose outcome serves capital either way (more or less, over time). The only substantive choice is to emotionally opt out and then reengage.

    well, if you want stats take abortion. now, i’m more or less aligned with the feminists on this one, as i see abortion as a matter of individual autonomy and its illegality as a remnant of the patriarchy. but stats show women favor abortion only about 58-42%. that’s a pretty significant minorty. do they hate themselves? are they anti-women as some feminists are complaining about palin.

    You’re confusing patriarchy with social identity. Patriarchy demands that women’s bodies are controlled, and it affects everyone, including women. A good South Asian example is the power that mother-in-laws wield over women marrying into the family. And that’s setting aside the question of whether people are single-identity voters (especially lgbt people and women who are oppressed on the basis of their individual identities rather than group identity).

    is it so hard to see a feminist justification for the pro-life position, as fetus become women too?

    In the United States, yes. There’s hardly widespread gender-based foeticide going on. That’s why context matters.

  21. 15 · Dr AmNonymous said

    average White working class person or average South Asian working class person in the u.s. more likely to be accommadating to socialism, strikes, and other anti-establishment activities? Is the average desi upper class person more or less likely than the average upper class white person in the u.s. to be accommodating to ideas like anti-imperialism, anti-zionism, or marxism? Again, these are vast generalizations – and the answers are complex, but I don’t think that the straightforward characterizations made by Ravi (and reinforced by you) are on the right track.

    are you defining working class as non white collar? I would lump simple data-entry jobs into this category as well. Now think of the general small business owner population, mainly small-time contractors, owner-operator transportation, hospitality and retail, and ask yourself whether these are the people with the time to mock up a “W.T.0–Kapitalist Pigs Killing Poor People” sign, drive to the latest protest (with numbers inflated/deflated depending on whether you favor CNN or alternet) in a major city, join up with their pink lingerie wearing, issue-intersectionality-deprived comrades and develop pneumonia while listening to Sean Penn/Al Sharpton/Medea Benjamin yap about the vast capitalist conspiracy to slyly reduce the happiness of the people by way of employing them and thus tainting the economic herrenvolk with the profit-driven spoor of aforementioned Pigs.

    The people i hope you’re thinking about, especially those who have to spend most of their time keeping their business running (and hopefully growing), don’t have time for the socialist’s idle pursuits, especially something that is NOW so clearly unproductive as symbolic action (protests and the like).

  22. 20 · Dr AmNonymous said

    In the United States, yes. There’s hardly widespread gender-based foeticide going on. That’s why context matters.

    And yet many feminists still oppose controling abortion in india. why? becuse the overarching principle of the individuals right to autonomy over their own body transcends cultures.

    but in the same breath they deny that others may have similar paradigms (like the fetus is a human fetus) that may trump the right of a woman to do what they like with their own body. unable to transcend their own framework (my framework also, btw) they reduce the opponents position to misogyny and/or false consciousness due to hegemony, adn go happily along their way in their ideologically certion world like the marxists of old…who were the founders of hegemony theories.

    in this sense, progressive politics begins to resemble old fashioned racism, (just read jyotsana’s, who coming from the same paradigm, unhinged and racist attacks on a black and latina commentator on the “My PUMA is flummoxed by Palin thread”) as the deny woman and POC the very diversity whites and men take for granted.