Is not the first obstacle, for any "radical" underdog in quest of primary election upsets, to expose the "safe" frontrunner as anything but? Not just as misguided, dishonest, and packed with infamous backers, but a vulnerable loser even against a rightwing clown so bizarre there'd be nostalgia for Dubya. Well, not quite. Thus, the first array of trials for upstart Bernie Sanders: roil the field, dislodge the fat cat favorite, then plunge into the mayhem of the miraculous.
Just like Obama did in '08, arguably his greatest single feat. What if by 2050 Obama's notoriety has nothing to do with his perverse presidential loyalty to the status quo but his shocking triumph six months before his first election? What if this first Hillary slayer, stopping cold an even more regressive reign, is his great historic marker? What if the future plays up Obama's role as the David who vetoed eight years of Clinton Plutocracy 101, run by a gang of her Foundation Goliaths? Obama's betrayals aside, one may still dread worse loomed (and looms) on the horizon. Apparently, this Goliath returns from the dead, inviting a second slingshot of stones.
Okay, Obama the phony "systemic reformer" morphed into Hillary-ite, even a Dubya clone, one of history's nasty little jokes. Yet, who doubts any Second Clinton Coming won't prove more hawkish and more WS-friendly than Clinton I or Obama? Give the smaller devil his due, trumping the Clinton juggernaut from handing off the baton from the husband who triangulated our politics, pushing NAFTA and banishing Glass-Steagall. Would not this weird inheritance match the horrors of Papa Bush doing the same, first to the older dimwit, now to Jeb, so far a political halfwit? Thank God when that lineage dries up.
Thus, my not so modest, opening gambit for Bernie Sanders: duplicate Obama, exile the bad queen, open the floodgates. That alone won't redeem decades of painful progressive defeats, but counting our blessings beats enduring more disasters. If he does nothing else (hardly my projection), an empowered Sanders postpones the death of the Democratic Party some four or eight years. Not enough for you? Hardship and desperation make for appreciation of the plausibly positive.
The Anti-Sanders Brigade
In those terms, I defy Chris Hedges' logic that scoffs at any "energy invested in these elections, including championing Bernie Sanders' ill-advised decision to validate the Democratic Party" as an unequivocal "waste of time." No movement that reduces the widespread cynical malaise towards elections, beyond any conceivable third party leverage, and sends a sleazy dinosaur packing refutes Hedges' overstated "electoral farce." Offsetting the smash mouth bloodsport that is American politics (Trump, Paul, Cruz, Clinton), any leading light who dispatches Hillary, ever more dangerous than Obama as a gnarled Washington denizen, deserves support.
That doesn't deny Hedges' more pertinent observations, "The specter of meaningless presidential elections caters" to "the idiocy" of personality soap operas, the production of media- and billionaire-run parades. That's exactly why Sanders is gaining traction, as his gritty, anti-plutocracy, anti-inequality and anti-corruption manifesto spotlights outmoded, bipartisan idiocy. Just saying No to the "inevitable" winner awards Sanders even greater importance than Obama's '08 upset. This final exile dramatizes majority judgment HC should not run (I mean, ruin) anything beyond the (indictable) family Foundation.
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