Sept. 8, 2015
I posted the following to a facebook page called “Bernie Believers”:
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I think I’m about to be removed from the group Bernie Sanders 2016 – Ideas Welcome because I refuse to live by their rule that apparently we must all live in a fantasy-land where we pretend— in the name of positive thinking— that a Bernie Sanders Democratic nomination is a certainty. One admin calls any mention of any possible scenario in which Sen. Sanders does not receive the nomination “defeatist.”
I apologize for airing another group’s dirty laundry here, but I feel the need to say why that is just an asinine policy for any Bernie Sanders group.
You can’t just pretend. You have to face reality and act. There are powerful, powerful forces stacked against this man. Pretending he’s going to win simply by the fiat of our magical thinking just invites *complacency*. It’s absolute nonsense. This group is called Bernie Believers and I believe he *can* win. But that does not mean I believe that with good thoughts and a Wink from God that he *will* win.
There was a poll today that was released by the mainstream media that said that Joe Biden is polling ahead of Bernie Sanders. One well-meaning Sanders supporter commented that this poll was obviously a lie.
Really? You find it implausible to believe that the sitting vice president of the United States for eight years could actually be polling ahead of a relatively little-known senator from a small northeast state?
The poll does not inspire me to just throw my hands up and say “lies, lies!” It inspires me to work harder, to find more outlets to spread the word, to *act*. That’s not defeatism. Not at all. But it is a recognition that indeed, we are supporting a candidate who faces challenges— as should any candidate who wants the job of being the most powerful person on the planet.
My point being that I’m completely in favor of Bernie Sanders. But I’m also in favor of reality. I don’t think it’s defeatist to recognize that (a) the primary season is inherently adversarial and (b) as such, anyone’s given candidate is— and should be— in for a tough fight.
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I would add:
Here are two planks in my platform of Reality-Based Support for Bernie Sanders.
(1) We agree that his winning the nomination is not a foregone conclusion.
Here is the more important plank, and for some, the more bitter pill to swallow:
(2) We agree to support the eventual Democratic Party nominee, whomever he or she may be, as per the expressed wish of— guess who— Senator Bernie Sanders.
Some well-meaning Bernie Sanders supporters have expressed how “tired” they are of “voting for the lesser evil” and they won’t do it. Come November 2016 they will write in Bernie’s name. (Some probably even will actually follow through on this.)
I’ll tell you what tired me out. Eight long, grueling, miserable years of Bush and Cheney, delivered to us by the same anti-lesser-evil voting strategy which saw a certain former consumer advocate acting as spoiler. Now those eight years— that was really tiresome. If you want to end the problem of lesser-evil voting, then, by all means, let’s amend the Constitution and go to an Instant Runoff Voting system. (I don’t state that rhetorically, either; I am completely in favor of doing this.)
Until we have that, however, we have reality. And the reality is, if you thought President Bush was bad, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Wait until you get a load of what a proto-fascistic President Trump has in store.
I welcome everyone’s thoughts.