Can Bernie Sanders Win? Can We?

Bernie Sanders announces he is running for president of the United States and calls on Americans from all over the nation to join him in building a massive grassroots movement.

But is he electable? Here is the announcement:

by O Society Feb 19, 2019

Sanders’ announcement today – he is indeed running for president in 2020, just as we surmised way back on Dec 3 – is going to be met with a barrage of questions from the media. The first, as always, is “Can He Win?”

Perhaps a more lucid question should be posed by We the People, namely
“Can We Win?”

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Why is this a better question than the mainstream media establishment’s questioning whether or not Bernie Sanders can win?

Because motive. And don’t worry, I’ve spent the last three months talking with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, so we do have an answer.

Simple. Let’s draw a picture and all will become clear as an unmuddied lake, clear as a sky of bluest azure…

walking on clouds

Can you see it? In the crystal ball? The blue sky, vast and open, just as our minds are?

Good. Then here we go:

Let’s go back to a time when we were kids. Obviously this will be a different piece of time and space for each of us, so we’ll talk about the time of my childhood as an example.

Just the same, y’all should reflect on your own lives at this time as well. As they say, the shit is about to get deep. No worries. No need for hip waders. Learn to swim!

When I was a child, I vaguely remember this man called “Jimmy Carter” being in charge.

And I remember Mr. Jimmy asking us to do simple things, such as go from what’s called the Imperial system of measurement, to what’s called the International System (SI) of measurement.

Sound familiar? Some folks call it a British system and a Metric system.

No worries. Same difference.

Now, what do you think happened when ole Jimmy told us to do this?

To give up our inches, feet, and miles yo try something different.

To try the stuff scientists use. Meters. Why meters takes care of all 3 at once!

And best of all, do you have 10 fingers? If you do, then you can use them, all 10 of ’em, to convert any sort of meters, milli- centi- deci- and so on…

Do you remember?

Are you smarter than a 5th grader?

so easy a caveman could do it

So what happened when Mr. Jimmy asked us to do this thing?

This thing “so easy a caveman can do it.”

Right. We all know what happened:

America said, “Hell no, we won’t go, because Chevrolet, something, apple pie, something something, baseball, and because ‘Merica!”

That’s exactly what we said to Mr. Jimmy, didn’t we?

Apple pie, mom, and Chevrolet say we don’t have to. Because we’re exceptional!

This is American Exceptionalism in action, isn’t it?

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m no communist 10-speed bicycle rider. I love Chevys!

My first car was a Nova. It looked something like this one:

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Yes. A ’71 SS Chevy Nova, except mine was blue instead of black. We called it the Blue Bomber. Built like a tank, she was. Everything steel and leaded gasoline and so on.

Wreck proof and death proof, and all the parts were in this Imperial system: 1/4″ here, 3/4″ there, throw in some 5/8″s and more.

Nothing you can count on your fingers though. How do you count to 7/16″ on your greasy hands?

No one knows…

The point being, the British came up with this Imperial system to standardize things in the British empire back in the day, and later they abandoned it for another system which made actual sense, rather than being based on the length of some random king’s left foot or something as the Imperial system was. Didn’t they?

Oh, but not us. Not ‘Merica!

You see, we beat the British in a fair fight called the Revolutionary War. Never mind the French helped us win, keep your eye on the prize: 1776.

We won! We don’t got to do what the British tell us to do now. Because tea. And redcoats. And muskets. WINNING!!!

See? Even though to this day, we use the British scale we were made to use by the British Empire, when those bleeping b@$+@rd$ told us to go metric, we told them to piss off, didn’t we?

Because candy apple red 1963 split window Stingray! AmIrite?

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Don’t you see? Dropped on your head much, were you?

You’ll pry these British Imperial ratchet tools and crescent wrenches from my cold dead hands because they fit my car, you bloody idiots!

Scientific units? Science? Nobody cares about science. Witches have more fun!

We’d much rather memorize 2.54 cm = 1 inch and do conversions in our heads to fractions like 7/32 now wouldn’t we?

Damn right we would! No one cares what the rest of the entire world does because we got steel muscle cars, baby! ‘Merica!

Jimmy Carter. What a moron that guy was. Anyone remember these?

Signs in kilometers. AS IF! I can’t drive 45 Mr. Jimmy! WOO HOO!

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That’s American Exceptionalism. AKA too cool for rules.

Rules apply to someone else: LOSERS!!! Nuremberg. Surely you jest.

Once upon a time, I despised Jimmy Carter.

I mean, who didn’t, right?

President Jimmy Carter.  He was weak and cowardly I thought, and I certainly wasn’t the only one. Iranian revolutionaries had just overthrown the Shah, stormed the US embassy in Tehran and taken fifty-two American diplomats hostage.  And there was Carter, the hapless peanut farmer, and he wasn’t doing anything about it. We had the mightiest military in the world. Those were our people. Our embassy. Our soil, our property. A bunch of goddamned towelheads were touching our stuff, defying the United States of America.

And it just went on and on, four hundred and forty-four days.

It was infuriating.

It was embarrassing that a bunch of camel jockeys should have us – US – bent over a barrel like that.

I mean, how dare they? We were America, Goddamn it.

And Carter, well, Carter did nothing

The reasons for the Hostage Crisis were woven deeply into that history and included resentment over things most Americans still don’t know about their own past let alone Iran’s – such as the CIA-orchestrated overthrow of the Iranian government in 1953.

In America, the Iranian Hostage Crisis was the birth of modern shallow mindless patriotism, of overdone flag displays and empty gestures of self-indulgent nationalism.

USA! USA! In the end, the release of the hostages had very little to do with the election of Ronald Reagan and a great deal to do with the patient statesmanship of Jimmy Carter.

This is not a world for a government run by amateurs.

As the man said, Walt the Janitor isn’t qualified to land a Boeing 707.

The Hubris of Ignorance: Stonekettle Station

Everyone loved Ronald Reagan. Ronnie didn’t do no metrics. Just jellybeans. And action!

Those hostages came home, didn’t they? Damned right they did.

They came at the very same time Reagan was sworn in! How’s that for action!

Documented right here in the New York Times, isn’t it?

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Can’t read it?

No worries. Here, we’ll blow it up:

Washington, Jan. 20 — Ronald Wilson Reagan of California, promising “an era of national renewal,” became the 40th President of the United States today as 52 Americans held hostage in Iran were heading toward freedom.

The hostages, whose 14 months of captivity had been a central focus of the Presidential contest last year took off from Teheran in two Boeing 727 airplanes at 12:25 P.M., Eastern standard time, the very moment Mr. Reagan was concluding his solemn Inaugural Address at the United States Capitol.

The new President’s speech, however, made no reference at all to the long-awaited release of the hostages, emphasizing instead the need to limit the powers of the Federal Government, and to bring an end to unemployment and inflation.

Government Is the Problem

Promising to begin immediately to deal with “an economic affliction of great proportions,” Mr. Reagan declared: “In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” And in keeping with this statement, the President issued orders for a hiring “freeze” as his first official act.

At the same time! Wait… doesn’t anyone think there is a problem here?

I mean, Jimmy Carter took his sweet time. 14 months. Nothing happened. Zilch. Nada.

No hostages came home.

But good ole Ronald Reagan – everyone’s grandpa – gets the hostages back at the same time he’s being sworn in!

WTF?!? Now that’s something you don’t see every day! What is it?

It must be magic… or something

And that something was a scam, ladies and gentlemen.

Oh yes, it was. A glorious scam. That’s where the evidence leads us. Straight to Scamtown.

You think having a shot Stoli with Vadimir Putin over prostitutes and pee pee is awful?

Try negotiating with known terrorists holding American hostages so you can sabotage the campaign of your political rival. Because that’s exactly what ole Ronnie and George HW Bush 41 were up to!

Rigging the election indeed. Did we mention Bush 41 was head of the CIA and overthrowing governments is their specialty?

A tower in Moscow? Try a Boeing full of hostages magically appearing as you have your hand on a Bible for a magic trick. Now there’s a sense of context.

But hey, have a jelly bean. Bonzo, give the nice people a jellybean. A whole pawful, handful. Now Dance Monkey, Dance!

Please remember, as Bootsy Collins grooves you with the bass-o-licious funk, we’re all still in a trance. Yes. A trance. Remember?

Time travel. Space travel too! Childhood. Nostalgia. Clear blue sky.

What are we talking about? What does any of this stuff about Corvettes and chimps have to do with Bernie Sanders running for president?

Bonzo Goes to Washington? Bootsy? Bananas! Bonkers! Huh?

Monkeys jumping on the bed. The president’s bed!

How many? I don’t know. I don’t do metric, Ronnie!

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You see, that very inauguration day ended the term of the last decent man America had in the Oval Office: Jimmy Carter.

We didn’t know it then. We do now.

See? Jimmy builds houses for people. People he doesn’t even know. And he has cancer. And he’s 90 years old. Still swinging a hammer. He’s what Diogenes would call “an honest man.”

But we didn’t like Mr. Jimmy, because he didn’t kill enough folks. See?

We thought Mr. Jimmy was a pussy:

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So we hired an actor to play president for us instead. You know, an actor who would kill people, like he’s supposed to with his six shooter. Cowboys.

And fuck the metric system. And jellybeans. See? Because Hollywood stars!

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Have you made the connection yet why this stream of consciousness is relevant today?

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Hold on, we’ll spell it out for everyone with a campaign slogan then, shall we?

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Stole the MAGA slogan right off old grandpa’s buttons, didn’t he?

That’s what our story of Ronald Reagan, B-list Hollywood actor becoming El Presidente means, kids.

He opened the door to greatness. To MAGA. To Back to the Future. See?

Reactionary, dude!

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And that’s how we get to Bernie Sanders in 2020.

Take 1980 – when Reagan and his chimp, Bonzo, ran on the slogan “Make America Great Again” – and then fast forward 40 years to 2020.

That’s math!

Whatcha got?

That’s right. What you got is Trumped. Another B-list Hollywood actor in charge.

It’s a re-run folks. And you know what else?

If there hasn’t been a decent man in the White House in 4 decades, well Hell’s Bells, that’s my whole lifetime!

Two generations of Americans who don’t have a single president to look at as a model for a good man in the White House. 20 years = a generation. That’s math!

Right. There are 2 generations of people who don’t think it can happen, because they have never seen it actually happen in person! To wit:

Ronald Reagan and his trickle down voodoo economics.

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That’s the story of how George HW Bush 41 helped Reagan steal the election. Then former CIA director Bush 41 invited the CIA to come live in the White House with him. And antagonized some guy in Iraqistan.

Overwhelmed by Reagan’s success and his Bush successor, Bill Clinton decided he would be an actor too, and play the role of a Republican president.

Yes he did.

Thus Bill Clinton founded the Inauthentic Opposition Party and pioneered the triangulation method of throwing away your own morality for the sake of a handful of magic beans.

Jelly beans, dear Bonzo. Jelly beans.

Have one…

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Thus it was Bill Clinton – aka “Slick Willie” – came to stand for nothing. And by standing for nothing, the Democratic party itself became Centrist New & Improved Democrats.

Thus did the Democratic party become neoliberals awash in Grandpa Ronnie Reagan’s money voodoo.

And to be different, they called it being “fiscally conservative and socially liberal.”

And it was good. Or so they thought…

But it wasn’t, was it?

trickle-down-lucy.jpg

WTF, Chuck?!?

Next came George W Bush 43. What can we say about Dubya?

Maybe the worst US president of all times. The anti-GOAT!

Could be. I dunno. It’s possible. Seems likely.

Anyway, Dubya 43 led us into what even a blithering idiot can see was the biggest mistake in US foreign policy history:

Dubya invited the neoconservatives into the White House (to live with the aforementioned CIA spooks and neoliberal voodoo priests of the unholy money tree), and thus it became filled to the gills, run to the hills, as stuffed as a roach motel full of Black Flag kills. She puts that shit on everything…

Pssttt…Are you still with me?

Come now, wake up and look at all of these links later, to get background documentation, understanding, and context of what a real recipe tastes like.

For now, let’s keep going. Shall we?

Lookit! Here’s a gratuitous Rorschach ink blot to wake you up, man.

Some might say it looks like Jennifer Garner wearing a Catwoman outfit.

Some me-ow!

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It’s the trance. Meow indeed.

Dubya. 9/11. Need we say more?

Let’s not. Speaks for himself quite unintelligibly, that one.

On to Barack Obama, or as his devoted followers called him, “Black Jesus.”

Now, Obama called himself a “New Democrat” just as Bill Clinton did.

And what all his “fiscally conservative but socially liberal, Hopey, Changey” jive meant was Obama bailed out the banks with one hand, and simultaneously gave We the People the middle finger salute with the other.

Yes, he did.

Which leaves us where?

Oh yeah… here. In 2019 with AOC:

The voice of a new generation

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was 11 when the Twin Towers came down and 18 when the Great Recession struck. She watched President Barack Obama bail out the banks, Occupy Wall Street fail to extract concrete wins, and college debt soar.

That series of events, she said, defined her generation.

“Our whole adolescence was shaped by war, was shaped by the increased erosion of our civil liberties and privacy rights, and then was shaped as soon as we got into college by a ground-shaking recession, which haunted our economic outcomes ever since,” she said.

She said.

There you go. Forsaken by Dubya’s Middle Eastern Saudi Arabia Saddam Hussein bait and switch scam, then pump’n’dumped scammed by Obama’s legion of vampire squid Wall St bankers. Did you get dinner and a movie out of it?

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And P.S., Dear AOC and everyone else in America:

Barack Obama expects you to thank him for it.

So where are we?

choose-your-own-adventure.jpg

Oh yes, we’re Breaking Bad. Choose Your Own Adventure:

Why Big Brother Turned On America

How America Lost It’s Damned Mind

Was the American Dream Destined to Fail?

Is the American Dream Killing Us?

Anyone still wonder how we got Donald Trump?

Because he’s next…

trump-swamp-720

Short recap of season Swamp Thing

This is how we got to Donald Trump:

Take 9/11, Neoconservatism, and the Forever Wars

Add Too Big To Fail, Neoliberalism, and Big Brother

Stir. Shake. Shaken not stirred. Shake’n’Bake. Shanked.

What did you expect would happen?

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Then Hillary Clinton rigged the Democratic primary.

Oh yes, she did.

Notice how 17 Republican candidates ran for president?

Oh yes,they did.

Notice how Hillary Clinton was the only Democratic candidate who ran for president?

Oh yes, she was.

Until Bernie Sanders – the longest serving independent member of Congress in American history – decided to run against Her, just to “keep it real.”

Told you we’d get to Bernie.

He knew, and we knew, and she knew, hell, we all knew HillBillary rigged the DNC primary against Bernie Sanders. He couldn’t win. A mirage it was. Cigars. Back rooms.

That’s how we got Donald Trump.

See, if Nobody had run, Nobody would have won, because Nobody got more votes than Hillary or Donald done got, Red and Blue.

did-not-vote-2016-update.png

Anyway, Hillary lost and immediately decided to blame Russia for Her loss.

Thus Russiagate became Too Big Too Fail,  and here we are.

Now, it’s time to answer our question. Finally. Is Bernie Sanders electable? Can he win?

I mean, aren’t people tired of him running for president? That one time.

It’s not like Hillary Clinton ran a bunch of times… or Trump.

Here’s the TV Guide for reference.

Yes. Of course he can.

Bernie Sanders is the most popular politician in the United States.

Yes, he is.

Can the most popular politician in the United States win the election?

Is this a real question, or is it bullshit? Enquiring minds want to know…

karen-Mcdougal.jpg

Noam Chomsky’s answer:

Bernie Sanders is an extremely interesting phenomenon. He’s a decent, honest person. That’s pretty unusual in the political system. Maybe there are two of them in the world, you know.

Two decent politicians in the world? We’re almost back to the present.

Remember, before the 2016 presidential election took place, I told people Hillary Clinton was going to lose. People did not believe me. I said after 8 years of there being an African-American president called Obama, much of America was not wanting to hear a woman called “Hillary” tell them what to do on the TV when they got home from work.

It’s not that a woman can’t be president of the US. Of course she can.

Golda-Meir.jpg

It’s that 2016 was the wrong time to play the identity politics card again so soon after Obama broke the “glass ceiling” for black folks. Too much identity.

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Simple as that. Folks can only handle so much change at a time. Don’t overthink it.

Hillary was the wrong woman at the wrong time.

Americans Wanted a Revolution, and Clinton’s Campaign Only Offered Us Obama 2.0

It will happen. Just let’s not try vs. Trump AGAIN, shall we?

Now, if Bernie had won the primary, he may or may not have beaten Trump in 2016. I think he would have, but it doesn’t matter now.

Anyway, if he had run against Trump as the Democratic party nominee in the presidential finals, I know exactly what would have happened, in a general sense.

Trump would call Bernie a “socialist” and a “communist” and the words “Jew” and “Antisemitism” and “Atheist” would get thrown around endlessly on Twitter. There would be some stupid nickname for Sanders supporters, “Bern Victims” or something.

So what?

Bernie was a white guy, which is what mattered most at this particular moment in time and space.

Yes it did.

Thus Bernie could win and Hillary could not.

Now we arrive at 2020:

They Say Bernie Sanders Is Too Old, Too White, and Too Socialist to Run for President in 2020. They’re Wrong.

Math quiz:

Donald Trump (born June 14, 1946) will be 74 years old by 2020.

So does it really matter Sanders (born September 8, 1941) is going to be 79  by 2020?

Ahem. Trump was old to start with last time around. Are you smarter than a 5th grader?

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Since when did being and old white dude disqualify anyone in politics?

Even so, “They” are going to tell you:

“NO, DEMOCRATS DO NOT NEED TO NOMINATE A WHITE MAN IN ORDER TO DEFEAT TRUMP!”

I say do you really want 4 more years of Trump?

No? Then stop with the identity politics and get me someone authentic. I don’t care what color, gender, or planet. Authentic.

They (“They” being the mainstream media) told us Hillary Clinton was certain to win in 2016. They all endorsed Her. And their minds were blown when she blew it.

“They” told you Trump would be impeached by now. Because something something Russia.

And I told you “They” were full of shit before Trump was even sworn in.

Didn’t we just review the history of presidential performance (or lack thereof) over the past 4 decades?

Didn’t we just conclude all the Democrat AND Republican presidents sucked?

All of them. No, not just the Red ones or just the Blue ones.

Time for something different. This is why Sanders calls himself a “Socialist” even though he really isn’t one. To distinguish himself from 40 years of assholes.

“They” are going to tell you the Democratic party has to play the middle, just like HillBillary Clinton did, to get the “moderate Republican vote.” Again.

You see, the Democratic party is made up of Neoliberal Centrists, which means The Democratic Party Is Further Right Than Most Voters on policies already.

So all they got is identity.

Identity. Which brings us back full circle round to The Doctor and Miss Hyde:

You see, Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde are identical, meaning they are not a “they” at all, but rather they are the same person.

Not two, one.

Moreover, America has had nothing but one Mr. Hyde for the last 40 years. He came in different colors, true, but he still sucked.

Yes, he did.

Thus, the feeling of learned helplessness is strong in today’s America. Rightly so. We’ve been tortured.

As the Election Circus begins yet again, our corporate masters – namely, the oligarchs – are going to tell us what to do yet again through the mainstream corporate media they own.

The oligarchs are going to try to herd us, as sheep or buffalo are herded. Off cliffs. Into pens. They’ll use fear and anger, get us emotional and stupid, and thus get Hyde to come out.

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Identity politics is how they do this.

The KKK, Nazis, white supremacy, nationalism,immigration… this is identity politics.

Race, religion, gender, sex, sexual orientation, this is identity politics.

And guess what? Republican party membership and Democratic party membership is identity politics too. Red and Blue. They play each against another. Divide and conquer. Sound familiar?

That said, I still believe Americans know authentic when we see it. It’s just we haven’t had an authentic president since Jimmy Carter to know what one looks like. Abraham Lincoln. Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Teddy Roosevelt too. Thomas Jefferson. There are authentic presidents.

So choose a Doctor Jekyll this time. An authentic human being. It could be Bernie Sanders. Could be Tulsi Gabbard. Could be Elizabeth Warren. Could be Sherrod Brown. Could be someone else authentic.

Please note, I am not endorsing anyone specific here.

What I am saying is there are authentic, honest, decent rational people in the world who will look out for the public’s best interests. Someone who will enact legislation like the New Green Deal people want and will benefit from.

Then there’s Mister Hyde. We all know who he is.

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Donald Trump is the superlative Hyde. All resentment and ignorance. The herd.

Trump is the quintessential anti-authentic. The monkey with the hand grenade. The brick through the window. The Molotov cocktail.

The solution is to find an authentic candidate, one who will end the Forever Wars in the Middle East, not begin new wars against China and Russia. We want peace.

America has generations of apathetic people who’ve never known a country not at war. It has been like this since Jimmy Carter, our last Doctor Jekyll.

Find an alternative to neoconservative foreign policy. War profiteers. Merchants of death.

Yes, I know Barack Obama fooled many of us with the Hopey Changey.

Still, find the authentic candidate, one who will give an alternative to neoliberal economics. We don’t have to have corporate fascism and oligarchy. We can do better.

We can be better than this.

 

The Doctor’s answer is “Yes, of course Bernie can win.” Or someone else authentic can win instead. No worries. It will get better. Someone whose identity is not solipsism and narcissism. Someone who cares.

Hyde’s answer is “No, so why bother? Just break stuff instead.” Never mind you live in the same house whose roof you’re pulling down upon your own head. Just move fast and break stuff, stupid. We can’t have anything nice. We cannot cooperate. Do the duopoly. Just kill and steal. Make sure I get mine. Greed and violence; its the American way, honey.

Which will it be? What is America’s identity in 2020? Choose wisely.

Bernie could stop the madness. He’d at least try. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

In the meantime, get yourself one of those Yellow Vests and start rioting. Right here in ‘Merica. Scare the hell out of ’em. Ask for stuff. Refuse to buy stuff. Go on strike. Do it. Scare the shit out of some oligarchs. Wake the hell up.

The time is now.

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(header image: The Richard Mansfield calendar for the year 1900. Richard Mansfield was an American actor, who in 1887 starred in a dramatized version of Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hydeone year after the publication of this novel by Robert Louis Stevenson).

3 thoughts on “Can Bernie Sanders Win? Can We?

  1. Live long and prosper. I’m not making a case Jimmy Carter is perfect, nor would he, mind you. I am making the case he’s the only honest and decent human being to occupy the White House in the last 40 years. No wonder so many people gave up on the government.

    Like

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