Bernie Sanders’s ride has come to its end. Finally. Or has it?
When Senator Sanders launched his nascent bid for the presidency last year, my initial thoughts were not complimentary. Here was a perennial outsider and nonconformist (qualities I actually could respect), who had charmed my home state of Vermont into thinking he could accomplish something in the Senate, casting aside any notions of political independence in signing on to the Democratic party machine. Why? “It is the only way to get elected,” he claimed at the time. If that were true, then Jill Stein and Gov. Gary Johnson would have to be at the party doorstep, would they not? The truth is, that was never the reason.
|I kinda love this meme.|
Bernie finally admitted that he latched on to the Dems for two reasons: media and money, and the first begets the second. Yes, he wanted an easier path to the presidency if possible, but what he really wanted was the media attention and the donations that would accompany that. He got both, and don’t let anyone tell you Bernie has been ‘ignored’ by the media. He has received just as much attention as anyone not named Trump or Clinton in this race, and if that isn’t enough, then maybe he should ask Jill Stein how she feels about the media attention she doesn’t receive.
And the money did roll in. While Sanders will tell you he didn’t get the ‘big money’ that the others got, that is another falsehood. Sanders received more outside money than any other candidate! And maybe the list of his direct donors doesn’t include the billionaires and banks that Hillary’s has, I’m pretty sure the people ponying up for those SuperPACs were making six-figure incomes, thus perpetuating the supposed ‘income inequality’ that Bernie rails against.
Bernie’s real goal was, and still is, to make the Democratic party a Socialist one. Which is why he remains in the race despite being technically incapable of winning at this stage. One might ask why he didn’t just align himself with Socialists in the first place. After all, there are Socialists actually getting elected in America. The reason is: Americans don’t actually like Socialism.
Bernie’s uphill battle wasn’t an effort to win the presidency, it was an effort to convince people that progressive, Democrat, and Socialist are all the same thing. Pursuant to this, he’ll look at the ballot returns in his favor as evidence people are on his side. However, his notion that the vote tallies in his favor are the indication of a revolution are laughable. Though the article cited above states that nearly 35% of Americans have a favorable view of Socialism, only 5% of Americans have voted for Sanders. And that ‘favorability’ number has actually declined in the period in which Sanders has been campaigning!
Sanders claims to have started a revolution. He hasn’t. The net effect is that Sanders has made people more aware of what direction the Democrats are actually moving - bigger government, less liberty. And that scares people. People clearly like free enterprise, entrepreneurship and small business according to those Gallup results. Those things are antithetical to Socialism, in which the federal government would own the means of production. And make no mistake, that is what Sanders has advocated for in every day of his career… Well, right up until he ran for president.
Look around and ask yourself, if this is Sanders’s revolution, who will carry the torch going forward? Who are the up-and-coming politicians who will champion his policies when this campaign subsides? The list of endorsees is actually more chock full of people who have left office, seems more interested in celebrities than public servants, and is notable for its lack of anyone with any kind of executive experience. And don’t look past the fact he has Nicolas Maduro’s backing. But don’t fret, he recently decided to flip-flop on legalizing marijuana, so he has Kumar’s vote.
There is no one in Congress who sides with Bernie. This explains why not a single piece of legislation that Bernie has authored has ever passed in either house. And Sanders’s supporters have taken umbrage with the flaws in the system that have inhibited his campaign without acknowledging that a) Sanders chose this route and b) there is no one in the system who aligns with him that is interested in changing things. Not. One. Person.
So when we dissect the denouement of his supposed revolution, we can look back at a man who cast aside principles for party, chose money and media over making a difference, and who now has an army with no incipient leader – all while public opinion of Socialism has declined. In other words, in every way imaginable, the Bernie Sanders campaign has actually failed.
And that’s a good thing for America. You know, the one that loves free enterprise and all...