Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Democrats: Be Careful What You Wish For

He's for equality. That's great. Is it too much to
ask how he plans on governing?
Hey, I get it. You don't love Hillary Clinton. She's part of the system, she's been a little slippery, the press hates her, and c'mon, where there's smoke there's fire, right? She's friendly with the banks, she's a foreign policy hawk - hell, she voted with the odious GW Bush to invade Iraq in a pointless self-inflicted policy wound. I get your concerns, but you need to think very carefully about where you're going with this.

Bernie Sanders can't get elected. If Hillary is crippled, Bernie still won't get the support of the national party organization. So we either end up with a crippled Hillary Clinton or an unelectable Bernie Sanders as the nominee. How is that good?

The question is simply this: What is the goal? None of these people are people we WANT to be President. 'But mikey', you say, 'you're wrong. I WANT President Sanders.' But you really don't know that. Let me remind you of history - you thought Obama would be the liberal savior - I know, you don't remember it that way now, but I was there. I KNOW what you said. Constitutional Scholar, community organizer, everything he said led you to believe he would do great things to advance the liberal agenda.


But the realities of reality left you unhappy. He stayed in Afghanistan. He couldn't close Guantanamo Bay. He put troops back on the ground in Iraq. He routinely assassinates people with CIA drones without even knowing who they are. He never prosecuted the bankers that blew up the financial system and then took taxpayer money to cover their stupidity and greed (even though the President isn't a prosecutor and can't really do more than define a broad enforcement agenda through his Attorney General).

So I invite you to go to Bernie Sanders' campaign website. Here, let me help you. Now, I invite you to tell me where he stands on a broad measure of foreign, economic and taxation policies. Because he either has no idea or he's not willing to tell us. Either way, bear in mind, you  trusted Barak Obama, are you really prepared to just blindly trust Bernie Sanders? Even now, in an interview with Stephanopoulos on Sunday, he said he'd continue the drone assassination program.

But even worse, if Sanders was to get the nomination, I can already see the campaign advertising screaming 'Socialist'. And this time they wouldn't be pretending - he identifies that way. And if you think Americans are going to elect a self-described Socialist to the White House, you are living in an alternate reality. If Bernie Sanders is the nominee, Scott Walker is your next President of the United States. And you'll cry 'no, it's not my fault, I was just being true to my beliefs', while all the while you KNEW that none of the choices were optimal and you created the conditions where the right wing lunatics were able to take control of all three branches of government.

Fucking congratulations.

This is a game that has to be played for real, and pretending you can get what you want is infantile. The people who reach the pinnacle of American politics are not nice, and they owe a lot of quid to a lot of pro quo. You're not going to get the workers paradise you long for - America is a harsh place, filled with angry, delusional, frightened people who will thwart your desire. All things considered, Obama was pretty good. He made some real progress, and there's more to come. He did what he could with the legislative path closed off to him. Don't forget that the next president may appoint as many as FOUR supreme court justices. You may not love Hillary Clinton, and you may loathe the DNC, but if you read Paul Ryan's budget and listen to Lindsay Graham's pants-wetting rhetoric and Bobby Jindal's idiocy, if you take note of the popularity of the spittle-spewing anger inchoate that is Donald Trump, you might decide that, as a political priority, getting Ms. Clinton elected might just be an undertaking worth considering.

Look. At the end of the day, it's your vote. You can use it tactically, strategically, ideologically or just mindlessly. Nobody can tell you how to use it, and if they try you should kick them in the junk. I'm just here to implore you to think about the secondary and knock-on effects of enough votes in enough places. If you're ok with that, great. Pull that lever. But don't try to pretend you didn't know what outcome you were creating. You can't kill your parents and then ask for mercy because you're an orphan.


  1. well said.

    I believe that not only is Bernie REALLY useful as he is, a gadfly pushing Clinton to the left, but he (like Professor Senator Warren) is MILES more useful in the Senate.

  2. The biggest enablers of the GOP are right-wing Democrats.

    That's the lesson you ought to have taken from the last six years.