This morning I was hanging out with some of my veteran friends on Facebook, discussing Bernie Sanders.
In the course of the conversation I happened to mention that last Monday I did something I had vowed never to do, which was to make a monetary contribution to the Sanders campaign. Looking back, I think part of the reason for my reluctance was that at that time he didn't seem to stand a chance against the presumptive nominee.
Now, I'm not fully satisfied with Bernie, I declared to this fellow, but he is the only hopeful sign, the only bearer of the banner of politics as public service, in this presidential campaign. How many other eager public servants do you see running? Name one, I demanded of him.
It's a travesty when Hillary Clinton is solidly the second most public-service minded candidate running (I will also not denigrate Governor O'Malley, who's kind of gotten a screw job in this campaign, and the same probably goes for Gov. Kasich of Ohio, though he's disqualified himself with me for foreign-policy reasons. You just do NOT say, even in an early Party debate, that "it's time to punch Russia in the nose.").
My geopolitical conclusions are quite bleak. The planet does not have time for glacially-paced incrementalism which is business as usual in American government.
Leonard Crow Dog was the chief medicine man of the Lakota in 1978 when I took part in the end of The Longest Walk. He prophesied (I know, it's a religious term, but I was there, and I'm using it advisedly) to a few of us around the campfire in the Black Hills:
"The human beings have a few more years to stop tearing Mother Earth, or She will take herself back from us."
Even electing Bernie Sanders may be no more than a rear guard action, because there are so many more DINOs than RINOs. The Democratic Party has become more loyal than opposition, and that started in the Clinton Administration!
However, I think Bernie Sanders has more cojones than President Obama, about who I still have trouble getting angry. About all I can muster is profound disappointment and sadness, and maybe a little anger that he didn't seize the time in 2009-10 and use his Democratic majority to be the public servant some may have expected because of his history as a community organizer.
Every Republican with a brain knows that the Trump phenomenon has destroyed any chance for a Republican President in 2016. However, what Americans, even seemingly intelligent, thinking Americans, are virtually unanimously clueless about is that the GOP doesn't CARE if it wins the presidency!
Republican core strategy is to maintain and enhance GOP domination of state legislative bodies, with the eventual aim of a Constitutional Convention where they can make an end run around both President and Congress with as many amendments as they can ratify.
Depending on who is sitting in the USSC, they could enshrine right-wing, Talibanesque social policies so securely that only another Con-Con or a significantly different USSC willing to revisit the constitutionality of already ratified amendments could ever change them.