I’ve long understood that a lot of people who ended up voting for trump did so as a second choice. What they knew was that they were tired of politics as usual. They were tired of watching the Democrats and Republicans switch chairs and simply exchange playbooks, majority and minority, then continue doing the same old things.
Part of the problem has been the success of Charles Koch’s war against America. As corrupt politicians have worked steadily to dismantle FDR’s New Deal, life for most Americans has become increasingly difficult – with the blame constantly falling on the victims. Koch’s assault began in the 1970’s. It gained steam with the “election” of Reagan. It coalesced under Clinton with the founding of Fox “News.”
Americans suffered court-appointed “President” Bush (43). Thinking Americans THOUGHT they’d found a champion in Obama, only to be disappointed by his ineffectiveness. (Yes, I know, Obamacare. The Affordable Care Act was better than the the cruel, so-called “free market” but many remember he RAN on universal health care and surrendered even the possibility before negotiations even began. Disappointing…)
By the time the 2016 “election” came about, huge swaths of Americans were simply fed up. Two candidates in that “election” promised change: Bernie Sanders and Donnie Dumbass. As time wore on, it became clear that Sanders was the choice of the people. He was proposing changes and promising to overturn the status quo. That’s what the vast majority of Americans wanted.
But the DNC had already pre-sold the nomination to Hillary Clinton. They were gobsmacked to discover Bernie’s popularity and had to resort to…well, let’s just say…”extra-electoral” activities in order to provide their end of the deal, the nomination. MANY people reacted in many ways. Mostly, people couldn’t be convinced to come out for the same-as-usual, incremental, baby-steps candidate who ran such a god-awful campaign. But a large number of disenfranchised voters had a second choice, somewhere to go, another candidate promising to overturn the status quo: Donald J. Trump. And so they did.
So, the Democratic Party did their postmortem and, after careful consideration and thoughtful reflection, decided to excuse their own cheating and blame Bernie. Okay, fine, whatever. They ALSO started paying lip-service to trying to become more inclusive – but ONLY by doing the same incremental, baby-steps thing.
Cut to 2020. Bernie’s surging again. Loyalist, party Dems still don’t understand. (“Why do people like THAT guy so much more than the candidate I prefer?!?”) Far and away, the vast majority of the American people want Bernie’s vision in the White House because he promises change. The thing that distinguishes Bernie’s change from trump’s is Bernie’s isn’t about destruction. Think of a kid who wants attention. Some kids gain attention by excelling at good things (Bernie), some kids get attention by being complete assholes (trump). But they get the attention…
Enter Joe Rogan.
By way of disclaimer, I’ve never heard ‘The Joe Rogan Experience.’ I know he hosted ‘Fear Factor,’ a show I never watched. In short, I know nothing of Rogan from personal experience. After two or three minutes of “research” I think Rogan leans Libertarian but sees himself as liberal. I also know he doesn’t understand the transsexual community. I know that because Rogan recently said on his podcast that he would probably vote for Bernie Sanders. Sanders highlighted the “endorsement” and the loyalist, partisan, Democrats went nuts, highlighting the fact that Rogan once said trans women weren’t “real women.”
The fact that Sanders continues to draw air is enough to disqualify him in the view of the loyalists. They’ll pounce on anything that seems even remotely able to derail the Sanders campaign. So, Rogan saying he liked Bernie was portrayed as Bernie agreeing with every word Rogan has ever said, not because Bernie agrees with Rogan but because it’s a fun smear.
In point of fact, the idea that a left-leaning Libertarian (who knew?) might consider voting for the Democratic nominee SHOULD be welcome news. Rogan’s is one of the most popular podcasts in the country. If Rogan says Sanders deserves a look, literally millions of people will look. In short, Rogan’s comments should be everything the Democrats pretend they want to see happen: the tent opening up to a larger crowd.
But Rogan can’t pass the Democratic purist test so, he’s out. (And let us not talk falsely now, Rogan endorsed Bernie. I suspect if he had endorsed, say, Warren, purist Dems would be just fine with him.) “Let’s not accept any votes unless they come from dyed-in-the-wool, tested pure Democrats,” say the Dems. “BUT…let’s be sure to bitch and moan endlessly when it turns out there aren’t enough dyed-in-the-wool, tested pure Democrats to put one of our own in the Oval Office.”
It’s starting to look as though the Dems are preparing to use their superdelegates to defeat democracy again. The party wants Biden and the party will GET Biden whether he can win or not. The thing is, California is voting in the primaries on Super Tuesday, along with much of the nation. Bernie does VERY well in California. Without DNC interference, it’s VERY possible Bernie could win the nomination. Personally, I would enjoy knowing all of the purist, loyalist Democrats are out there casting ballots for their hated nemesis because the party told them to.
I’m voting for Bernie in the primary in part because he’s bringing in a larger swath of Americans than the other candidates. Yes, I’ll vote “blue to block” in the general but I genuinely don’t believe Biden can generate enough enthusiasm to overcome the deceived right. Warren might be able to, having co-opted many of Bernie’s positions but why accept the copy when one can have the original, yes? A Sanders/Warren ticket would be MY dream team.
I STILL believe Bernie would have beaten trump in 2016. (So, I think, do the Dems. That’s why they’ve been so aggressively smearing him since.) I think Bernie could beat trump in 2020, given the chance, precisely BECAUSE he attracts more than just the loyalist base. But it’s looking more and more like the party would rather lose with their purity intact than actually DO what they claim they want to do: include everyone…