(Somewhat ironically, a technical error prevented me from getting an archive of the first night with the “new set.” I’ve embedded the livestream from Facebook here, but I’ve only got the last ten minutes locally and right now FB is not letting me download the video directly. If/when I can get this archived on YouTube, I will. For now, you can find it here: https://www.facebook.com/144898762238389/videos/496311224370776). Yes I know the audio’s out of sync.)
Why is Bernie running as a Democrat?One of the most-often asked questions I see – or depending on who’s talking and what their purpose is, accusations – about Bernie Sanders is why he’s running on the Democratic ticket. There are a number of reasons, some easier to see and obvious, some not so much.
First and foremost, he’s running on the Democratic ticket because the two major parties have the process locked down and an independent candidate doesn’t have a chance in hell at winning.
Now maybe – MAYBE – if he finds a way to get on the national ticket without the democratic party at this point, if they decide to keep playing to power, depending on how things go over the next couple of months – after all this work and in this time of great crisis that screams out with the voice of millions that the things Sanders has worked for must be done now, it’s not entirely outside the realm of possibility that he could win the electoral college as a write-in. He needs 270 votes. 9 states, for a total of 53 electors, don’t allow write-ins. The rest – 483 – do, with various requirements. In Michigan, for instance, you have to file a letter of intent by the beginning of September and have a list of electors. Each of them must have been a resident of the congressional district for which they’re voting for one year, and a US citizen for ten. But right now I think the inclination of the campaign is to do everything possible to save the one remaining party structure that *could* be saved to energize a united President and Congress to get some things done. Certainly that’s not the Republicans, so the Dems are what’s left.
But in the end, Bernie’s allegiance is to this country, not a party. How that will lead him to decide the best way to pursue this situation, I don’t know. I think if he made sure to dot his I’s and cross his T’s he could be an eligible write-in candidate. Depending on how many districts in which he can win the popular vote at that point, he’s got a margin of 213 electoral votes to work with.
But in the end his allegiance is to doing the right thing for the people of this nation. He’s entirely uncorrupted by special interests.
That’s. Why. The. Party. Doesn’t. Want. Him. To. Win.
That’s why the power that props the party up, including all the media companies who make all the big campaign donations, do not want him to win.
That is why it does not require a conspiracy. The big money interests, including those who control most of the information you see, do not want a healthy, educated population. Having a healthy, educated population creates opportunity for you which means it creates competition for them in an “open market.”
This is not an open market. If this market was open, we’d all be making plenty. We’re not.
This is not a free country.
You are not free when you don’t have your health.
You are not free when you aren’t taught quality critical thinking skills. You can not be free if you can’t think clearly. You can’t think clearly if you’re surrounded by carefully crafted messaging with the direct purpose of keeping you stuck where you are and falling like you have been for decades.
It would be easy and poetic to say that we’ve become so advertising-besotted that we can’t tell a real message from an ad anymore, but sometimes poetry doesn’t tell the story. The reality is not that you are stupid.
The reality is that you have been kept ignorant. What you hear and see shapes what you believe, and no matter what your race, class, culture, identity, background, current status, that is the truth.
There is a very small group of people who control what you hear and see for their own interests. That is also the truth. In much the same way it does not require a formal conspiracy for like interests to pursue like ends, it does not require traditional authoritarianism to keep at least enough people at heel to discourage the rest who aren’t from rising up in protest.
One of the ways that works is through recursive authoritarianism. So and so has this going on at worked that could be improved or has ethical considerations that concern you, but it’s clear that your best interest, and the company’s, is to simply not acknowledge that out loud. So you agree to say nothing and now whatever your position, you have to use it to ensure nobody else does either. Authoritarianism.
You are constantly at risk of losing your livelihood if you do the right thing ethically when you’re doing business. I have been constantly paraphrasing a line from Robert Heinlein lately: the survival of the species is the only universal morality.
Willful ignorance – the selfish pretense to stupidity
A whole BUNCH of people are about to hit what a lot of people, including people like me, have lived with most or all of our lives. It is not going to be pretty.
And where we are mostly not prepared is in our own minds and hearts to just admit that we have been wrong, and do something about it.
You are watching everything change, right now. It is changing precisely because IT HAS TO.
It’ll happen the easy way with good leadership – leadership that has consistently stood *against* all these abuses of power and resources, who has consistently worked in the best interests of *the people* and *the nation* and long-term sustainability and health and education and all the other things that go along with REAL freedom.
This is not an acute problem. This is the predictable result of a systemic problem. We can face that, or we can KEEP trying to pretend “it can’t happen here, not to us, we’re good people, my deity wouldn’t do that to me, we’re just trying to [insert euphemism to rationalize all the ego-driven bullshit of this planet], we’re doing the right thing, all these people who want all these changes are just self-interested, I just want what’s best for me.”
What’s best for all of us is to start working together instead of against each other. Abundance is everywhere. We have everything we need. We just refuse to let go of the things we don’t, because they’re comfortable. Because of that, we’ve all become far LESS comfortable than if a few of us weren’t so obstinate about their comfort.
The future is scary. The unknown is scary. The future is unknown. What is known is that we are at a key point in human history when we can no longer continue to pretend and act at the game of political leadership. We must lead, individually starting with ourselves, and in the world starting with a capable, competent, non-nonsense president who walks into the office with zero allegiance to anyone but the people who elected him.
The global coronavirus pandemic absolutely must be dealt with in an immediate fashion, and it is – as much as the ham-handed boobs currently running the country can manage it. But we absolutely must not ignore the lessons it brings, because frankly there will be more if we don’t re-prioritize IMMEDIATELY. To simply deal with the immediate problem is to remain unprepared for the next one.
Bernie Sanders understands that and is doing his best with a system that has been corrupted almost beyond repair. Personally, I hope if he loses the Democratic nomination he chooses to move forward as a write-in candidate in any state where he can’t get on the ballot as an independent, immediately if he loses the Democratic primary, which *right now* it appears he may, but we’ll have to see what happens. The concept of faithless electors exists, too. We have no idea how the national conventions, which are traditionally where the nominations take place, will turn out yet. A lot can change between now and then. I think it would be a mistake to start running independently *before* the official things are officially official, unless they try to drag ass past the deadlines for indys or write-ins to get on ballots.
But if they officially reject Sanders as a nominee…boy. I just can’t see him as head of the Senate. That’s not his job. And the offer would have to be made – which would immediately break Biden’s campaign promise – and he’d have to accept, neither of which we know anything of right now.