Democratic Convention 2016

Politics and Wine Only Place Americans Have Just Two Choices, Says Former Clinton Strategist

Mark Penn points out you might even get peanut butter avocado at an ice cream parlor.

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The Atlantic

Former Hillary Clinton 2008 campaign strategist Mark Penn pointed out that the only place Americans had just two choices was "red and white wine and politics." Penn noted in an event hosted in Philadelphia by The Atlantic that Americans get more choices at the ice cream parlor, where they might even be able to get a peanut butter avocado concoction.

"For a long time I think people have said there is no independents because people vote Democrat or Republican," Penn said. "That's because there are only two flavors in the ice cream store."

Penn also suggested that while usually about 10 percent of voters like both major presidential candidates, this time that number was "virtually zero." The decisive voters, about 20 percent according to Penn, supported neither.

"Anything can happen when there's just two candidates," Penn said when asked whether Donald Trump had a chance to win.

Trump and HIllary Clinton's favorability ratings are at historically low points, contributing to an environment in which third party candidates like Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson are outperforming in the polls versus where they were four years ago (if they were even included in polls) and final finishes in 2012. Johnson, for example, pulled just short of 1 percent in November 2012 and is now polling at around 10 percent and rising. He needs to get to 15 percent for a chance to participate in the presidential debates.

Related: "Binary Choices" Like Trump or Clinton are So 20th Century, where Nick Gillespie noted: "There are 40-plus types of Pop Tarts out there, 10 flavors (?) of Astroglide personal lubricant, and effectively an infinite number of entertainment channels thanks to the internet."

NEXT: The logic of voting for a lesser evil

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  1. whycome I harumph?
    another Trump article!
    harrumph! I harrumph!

  2. When it is politics and a system of coercion, people will choose the lesser of evils and a chance to win, which levels out with two choices in a competing system.. when the system is voluntary, diversity of choice appears because their is no punishment for not siding with a “winner”

    1. The flaw in the system is that you get the president a plurality of other voters select (unless the Electoral College messes that up as well), and not the president you select yourself. If everyone had to live under the government they elect, and only the government they elect, third and fourth parties would get a lot more votes.

      And why not? We can have a dozen insurance companies and half a dozen credit card companies and banks, why not 4 or 5 national governments to choose from? How many things are truly national and couldn’t be split up that way, besides defense? Say each government has to pay a proportional share of a minimum level of national defense, and then let them decide how to pay their share.

  3. Former Hillary Clinton 2008 campaign strategist Mark Penn pointed out that the only place Americans had just two choices was “red and white wine and politics” wine (white or red) and U.S. politics.

    Come on, man, that one was in the first paragraph.

    1. HEY YOU’RE WELCOME FOR CALLING IT OUT

  4. Anyone that thinks there are only two kinds of wine can’t be taken seriously.

  5. There’s rose’, white zinfindel, sparkling wines, mad dog.

    1. Boone’s Farm, Thunderbird, Cool Breeze. Exactly. See you get it.

      1. Many of those are fruit flavored malt liquors, not wines.

    2. My dad bought me a bottle of white merlot once.

      Horrid. I wouldn’t even serve it to Tulpa.

    3. And orange wine (white wine run through the red wine process) is become more common.

  6. There are 40-plus types of Pop Tarts out there, 10 flavors (?) of Astroglide personal lubricant, and effectively an infinite number of entertainment channels thanks to the internet.

    Bernie would have put an end to such decadence. Why do you want children to starve?

    1. Did you know that sommaliers do no better than the average jerkoff on the street when it comes to separating good wine from bad wine? True fact. They just have more words. In fact, they have so many words, that they don’t communicate well except with other sommaliers. What the fuck does wet stone smell like? I didn’t smell that in the white we drank the other night.

      1. Tobacco, smoke, human skin

        1. I really prefer my reds to have the smell of AIDs tainted blood, old pipe bowls, and sin.

          1. I just say “red fruits” and people nod at my sagacity.

            Wine people are like art people, say any dumb thing you like as long as you say it with confidence.

            1. Needs more blackberry and currant notes.

              1. Yes. Currant is good. No one even knows that those little fuckers taste like.

        2. This wine has the aroma of

          gym socks, menstrual blood, old eggs, and a wee hint of methane.

          1. Methane is actually odorless.

            1. then prove there is no smell of methane.

  7. Libertarians are well aware that they offer a third choice but seem unable to figure out why they get so few votes. One would think that an outfit so big on markets would pay some attention to marketing. You know, convincing people that what you offer is what they want. Pushing the “socially liberal” ideas by calling socons ignorant racist troglodytes won’t get many votes from that demographic, and talking about “fiscal conservatism” without some reasonable path from the welfare state to No Free Shit Land won’t go over with nearly everybody.

    1. You know, convincing people that what you offer is what they want.

      I’m afraid that the problem might be that what libertarians offer isn’t what people want. People want someone to be in charge to make them feel safe and brutalize people they don’t like.

      1. And there you are. Castor oil vs. marshmallows is a tough sell.

      2. Yes, but they also want to not be brutalized, so you can just reframe it as negative marketing. Speak less about the things you won’t do for people, and more about the things you won’t do to people. Less rape, for one thing. And much less chance that we will put you in boxcars, relative to Trump or Hillary.

    2. I see in the latest LP News that local candidates can pledge to lower property taxes by either 25% or 50%.
      I daresay a whole bunch of “true libertarians” will immediately complain that this waters down the Libertarian message. Such folks don’t really want to be in a political party, or at least one that takes note of reality.

  8. The wine thing is a pretty lousy analogy. Has he not been to a liquor store?

    1. This is why people hate libertarians. Every time they try to make common cause and accidentally make an overly broad statement, some pointdexter stands up and says, “well, actually…”

      1. Meh. You aren’t meant to take it seriously. It’s not as if I go around doing it in public.

        1. I’m that guy. You probably aren’t. We all role play here.

      2. Also, that’s “Poindexter”.

    2. Wine isn’t liquor.

      1. “Liquor” often refers to distilled spirits specifically, but it can also mean any alcoholic beverage.

        And they do sell wine in liquor stores.

  9. There are two kinds of beer.

    American and domestic.

  10. Hillary can win with 2% of the vote and won’t care because PRESIDENT.

    And it’s her turn.

  11. That’s funny. I’ve never seen a presidential election ballot with only 2 choices. I think people must be brainwashed or something.

  12. Penn noted in an event hosted in Philadelphia by The Atlantic that Americans get more choices at the ice cream parlor, where they might even be able to get a peanut butter avocado concoction.

    Speaking of peanut butter: Smooth or chunky.

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