Beware of the Bern! Ivory tower pundits dismiss the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign, but a grassroots revolution appears to be spreading like wildfire. It is coming to a street near you.
Pundits like David Brooks (NPR/PBS) conceal reality, such as Bernie being more in line with American public opinion than Hillary Clinton and Republicans. All he needs to do is get his powerful message out, which can transcend partisanship. According to the Examiner and other sources, there is evidence that even some Republicans support him.
Bernie is actually the least extreme candidate. For instance, getting Big Money out of politics is a campaign pillar for him. This includes overturning Citizens United and public financing of elections.
Sanders said of Citizens United: “”This is unprecedented and it is the most savage attack against American democracy, and…what it is saying is if you are a billionaire, you can buy elections. You can buy politicians, (and intimidate them), because you will be saying to them if you are going to vote against Wall Street, or the insurance companies, or the military industrial complex…we’re going to have millions of dollars in thirty-second ads in your state this weekend.”
On this issue, he is mainstream. According to an Informed Comment article, over 80 percent of Republicans and Democrats oppose Citizens United. More Americans believe in ghosts, witchcraft and UFOs than support Citizens United. In reality land, Republican politicians are the lunatic fringe.
What about Hillary? She persists in blowing her characteristic vacuous, mouth-fart bubbles on the issue, while accepting massive sums from corrupting sources. In the altered words of Pink Floyd, “Her lips move but I can’t hear what she’s saying.”
This pattern is replicated over and over. Another pillar of Bernie’s campaign is economic inequality, and recent Gallup polling showed 63 percent of Americans believe the wealth distribution is unfair and 52 percent think taxes should be raised on the rich to address this. Again, Republican politicians are the fringe, recently giving hundreds of billions in tax cuts to the top 1 percent, and Hillary blows bubbles while Rome burns.
Hillary takes massive campaign bribes from Wall Street banks, and unsurprisingly opposes undoing the problem her husband created by repealing Glass-Steagall, a Depression Era banking law. This deregulation allowed commercial and investment banks to merge, creating “Too Big to Fail” and consequent trillion dollar bailouts.
According to economist Robert Reich, Hillary’s opposition is “a big mistake economically because the repeal of Glass-Steagall led to the 2008 Wall Street crash, and without it we’re in danger of another one.” Bernie not only voted against repeal and predicted the meltdown, but also is leading the effort to re-solve this simple puzzle.
How about climate change? Bernie has made seriously addressing this issue a prominent part of his campaign. Is he a kook? Gallup polls show 71 percent of Americans believe global warming is occurring and 57 percent are sure humans are causing it. Who are the kooks? You know. Who cannot be trusted? Bubbles, the Democratic candidate who will not refuse fossil fuel campaign funding.
On education, Sanders has a concrete solution for confronting student debt. Surprise, surprise: 79 percent of Americans think college is not affordable. The Republican extremist solution: cut education funding, making it more unaffordable. Bubbles: pop, pop… inaudible muttering beyond receptive capacity of human ears.
Credibly, pundits say Bernie has little chance against the Clinton fundraising machine. Over 90 percent of the time the candidate with more money wins, and Hillary has already raised over $45 million, and plans on raising $2.5 billion. However, only 17 percent of her money came from small donors of under $200.
Bernie has taken a hard stance against taking money from corrupting special interests and super PACs, but still managed to raise $15 million. This is more than any Republican candidate, excluding their super PAC funding. More importantly, more than 80 percent of his funding came from small donors, the inverse of Hillary. This indicates a broad level of grassroots support, and as Bernie has said, the only way to defeat the billionaire class is if millions of people rise up.
As the Bernie train continues gaining steam in the polls, and with the largest crowd yet of 11,000 in red state Arizona, it is safe to say Wall Street is “Feeling the Bern.” On July 29, Dickson Street is set to feel it too.
According to a Washington Post article: “On that Wednesday night…Sanders will livestream his case for the presidency to more than 1,500 simultaneous gatherings planned in bars, coffee shops and living rooms nationwide…Sanders’ aides say that it’s all been building up to (this long dreamed of moment)… ‘What we are trying, as part of creating a political revolution, is creating a grassroots movement of millions and millions of people,’ Sanders said. ‘…we will be holding what we believe will be the largest digital organizing event in the history of this country.”
For many, Bernie is inspiring and speaks plain English, not hidden agenda euphemisms and linguistic acrobatics, which conceal unspeakable slime. The status quo Old Guard establishment has outlived its purpose. It is time to Bern the page.
A new chapter of human well-being awaits. Help write it.