(Image Credit: Gage Skidmore)
What do progressives do now?
There is disappointment? Yes.
Spite towards the establishment? Naturally, although too much spite can be harmful too. To be fair to the Establishment, they didn’t disappoint. They crushed the progressive and found a hero in an utterly flawed candidate who unravels with every passing day.
Frustration with Sanders?
Progressives have a special admiration for Bernie, but his refusal to be harder on Biden in the early debates became his undoing. A candidate like Biden should have dropped out after the New Hampshire primary. Instead, Sanders’ mercy kept him in the race and eventually made him the Democratic nominee to take on Donald Trump.
Hindsight is a cruel friend. It wasn’t until the shocking results of the March 3 Super Tuesday that Bernie’s strategic flaws became apparent to his supporters. Some progressive commentators did warn Bernie about being too soft on his good friend Joe Biden, but it didn’t matter. Bernie refused to get his hands dirty and progressives have to watch Biden and Trump babble and amuse until November.
Progressives might watch the conventions and the debates like neutral spectators, but come November, they will have to make a choice. They can vote for a third party, choose between two boomers, or sit at home.
Since one of the two boomers would be president after Election night, let’s narrow the focus on them. Will progressives turn up for Biden? His campaign will certainly hope they do, even though they will vehemently oppose every progressive policy.
Voting is a personal choice. Voting for Trump is not an option, so will the progressive vote go to Biden?
Should progressives think about voting for Biden?
Trump’s Inadequacies Reaching Boiling Point
Progressives may feel responsible to remove Trump from office in 2020. Although it’s not their fault Trump got elected to office (they didn’t stop Hillary from campaigning in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin), they might still feel he is too risky for another four years in office.
Joe Biden would be predictably bad, while Trump’s incompetence knows no bounds. His erratic nature could make many progressives turn up begrudgingly for Biden.
There is, of course, nothing wrong in doing so. Voting is a personal choice and if the possibility of four more years of Trump is very scary to a progressive, vote for Biden by all means.
Holding Your Vote Hostage
Think about your vote in November from two perspectives.
You can think of the short term and vote for Biden. Trump’s inadequacies scare you to no end and you vote for Biden. The devil you know is better than the one Trump could give birth to.
A vote for Biden would be one for keeping Trump at bay and thinking about the short-term goals of the progressive cause. A Biden term would give the mainstream media and establishment more reason to insist on nominating unambitious centrists. The next time a progressive runs, they can point to Biden beating Trump and use that as a stick to beat any progressive cause.
The other choice is keeping in mind the long term goals of the progressive movement. Why do you think Biden can become the nominee without making any effort to adopt a position progressives are passionate about? Progressives are not taken seriously by any moderate Democrat. Why? Watch this.
(Clip from ‘An Unreasonable Man’, a documentary on Ralph Nader)
Lawrence O’Donnell, the Captain of the Comcast Regiment, drops some rare nuggets in the video. If you want the Democrats to come around to your ideas, you have to show them you won’t vote for Joe Biden or any other half-baked Dem candidate in the general election.
This is why Bernie Sanders should have never agreed to support the eventual Democratic nominee. You lose your power when you promise to give it anyway.
Afraid The Mainstream Media Will Call You Bums? Laugh at their Scorn
Many progressives are made to feel guilty about not voting for any damn Democrat on the ticket.
Don’t feel guilty. The Democratic party isn’t your family. You have the right to reject candidates who don’t fit your demands.
Republicans do it all the time. They rejected Romney in 2012, some of them even voted for Obama in order to show the RNC that they were willing to walk away. In 2016, when the opportunity came to take a flamethrower through DC, they chose Trump.
Progressives don’t need to think about burning the Establishment down. However, they should have the will to do it if they really want progressive policies to see the light of day.
The ‘Bernie Bros’ name-calling is a good example. When some in the media resorted to calling the entire Bernie base as ‘Bernie Bros’, progressives lashed out like cornered tigers. The Bernie campaign tried firefighting this issue as well. AOC even came out and said Bernie Bros are a problem.
Has anyone in mainstream media ever talked about the DNC rigging the primaries in 2016? Have they ever admitted their gross incompetence in holding power accountable? Why should progressives panic and lash-out when some frauds in the mainstream media bark?
Laugh at their scorn. When someone calls out ‘Bernie Bros’, ignore them. ‘Bernie Bros’ is an issue only because angry progressives retaliate when it is brought up. Stay calm and shrug.
Then when they ask you why you didn’t vote for Biden and sat at home (or voted for Jesse Ventura), you can tell them you’re a Bernie bro.