Must every historic whistleblower speaking truth to power suffer indictment, exile, or martyrdom? Not Bernie Sanders, the era's most prominent progressive, whose meteoric consciousness raising challenges Hillary's status quo, a celebrity buffoon, and looming Cruz-Rubio extremism. And whether he wins or not, Sanders' truth-telling has already won the Democratic Party "message war," rebranding this party and its summer convention (vs. '12)
As a legitimate, happily unassailable whistleblower, Sanders the reformer stands alone on the national stage, pushing positive, systemic change for the vast majority, decency for the middle and working classes, even redemption for the American legacy of co-operative, collective, democratic values. Contrast Trump's brutally bigoted, anti-education, dumbing down rants full of hot air but zero solutions. Triggering what must be a generation-long revolution, Sanders is kickstarting a mass insurgency against the unholy conspiracy of bad government in bed with predatory capitalism.
Like Snowden and Manning, Sanders the whistleblower doggedly exposes the ugly truths that power elites want hidden away forever. Anything but a single-issue candidate, Sanders exposes a fistful of abuses: 1) inequality of assets, income, taxation and opportunity (economic injustice), 2) the corrupt conspiracy between sold-out government and its big business client, 3) the plunder of the working and middle class via outsourcing and criminal banking, and 4) direct linkages between irresponsible industrialism (mining, drilling, energy, non-sustainable manufacturing and consumption) with looming climate change. Only a political whistleblower like Sanders would confront openly the most powerful, best-funded, criminal enterprise: concentrated wealth owning more than half of all the world's material goods.
Sanders, Polar Opposite to Trump
What's amazing today is that while Sanders successfully rails against rigged capitalism, the perfect exemplar of greedy, low-class, insatiable crony capitalism is ransacking the rightwing party. Is this not a symbolic opposition made in heaven? Trump forever proves, despite hustling alleged billions, he hasn't a clue about emotional intelligence, compassion for the oppressed, or professionally running for the presidency. For how long will a power-mad, celebrity lightweight get away with remaking politics as a pro wrestling TV extravaganza, with front row Trump zealots bellowing for more blood and violence.
What a never-before-seen contrast! In this corner, an unassuming, compassionate, visionary/realist who talks about multitudes redeemed from the bottom up vs. the crudest, least qualified WH candidate ever, a billionaire braggart solely pitching how well he manipulated the system with self-serving, dicey deal-making. Moral polar opposites, their visible campaigns put the lie to any superficial, pundit comparisons between Sanders the thoughtful adult vs Trump, the farcical PT Barnum/George Wallace rerun. That's why a Sanders-Trump face-off, like none in American history, serves as the best, needed catharsis to clear today's noxious air.
Facing the Three-headed Hydra
Like the best whistleblowers, Sanders stands against a three-part, political Hydra: the Hillary status quo contingent, Trump the mock-insurrectionist cramming "bully" into bully-pulpit, and the gang of rightwing dinosaurs. And curiously enough, Sanders has the perfect character, humility, career experience and high approval numbers, let alone fact-driven arguments, to promote widespread reform against this triad of cash-cow "competition."