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Bernie Sanders: Real resistance and the steep learning curve

Bill Martin

Clinton/Warren 2020! Please mark my words, this is where things are heading.

Most of what calls itself “the Resistance” in present U.S. society is complete nonsense, of course — LARPing, for the most part, and not even good for that.

Any person engaged in serious praxis aimed at real systemic change knows this, though it seems even the majority of such practitioners in present circumstances have subordinated whatever critical acumen they may have previously possessed to the seemingly omnipotent god of hatred toward Trump.

In what is happening right now around the Bernie Sanders camp and the Elizabeth Warren camp, there is an opportunity for these supposed ResistanceTM-people to step up their game significantly.

After all, in this moment, the anti-Berners are certainly stepping up their own game. The problem is that there is a large asymmetry here: it is a lot easier to take someone like Bernie down than it is to build him up, in part because the former can rely on every aspect of the system, from call-out culture and Title IX-type methods to the most nefarious elements of the Deep State, while the latter has to actually confront these elements for a change.

For the most part, the ResistanceTM hasn’t done this, and doesn’t even think about doing this—that is why most of it is set up to accept whatever the power-players in the Democratic Party come up with, and to avoid any sorts of tests, trials, and tribulations (and therefore also the opportunities) that any real resistance would encounter.

There’s that expression, that a person has been “steeled in the resistance.” Especially because I came up, philosophically, as a Sartrean, and have been a part of the North American Sartre Society for a long time (since 1990, when I gave my first talk at the annual conference, with Hazel Barnes — translator of Being and Nothingness and Search for a Method, and excellent Sartrean philosopher in her own right — sitting not three feet from me), and have participated in various meetings with members of the French Groupe Sartrean, I have heard talks by people who were actually in the French Resistance, and had conversations with them.

It’s not a far-fetched idea that anyone who enters into real resistance to a powerful system expects and hopes to be “steeled”; by modus tolens (denying the consequent), then, it appears that the current Left is not interested in anything that is very difficult.

Or it could be that one of my terms here is wrong, and that what calls itself the “Left” these days is not interested in addressing things at the systemic level.

There is a failure here that goes quite beyond any question of “reform vs revolution.” Any struggle for real change, even such a struggle that aims somewhat short of a thoroughgoing break with the existing order, will mean going against the time. What this tells us in present circumstances is that the “easy resistance” is not against the time, not against the current, but instead is a part of the current and operating within the broad parameters of the current (if perhaps on the “left side” of things, though even this is not clear).

Still, we are in a moment when those who really do want to engage in a resistance that hopes to address systemic questions and to bring about substantive change, and not just the restoration of neoliberal normalcy, are confronted by both a test and an opportunity, and I honestly hope they will go for some real steel.

After the kerfuffle between Warren and Sanders at the last Democratic candidates debate (January 15), there has of course been a good deal of back and forth in social media, both pro- and anti-Bernie.

In the former camp, it has been excellent to see many women take on the rhetoric of “Bernie Bros,” which has the effect of cancelling their voices and engagement. What follows originates in some notes I made in response to one such woman who supports Bernie. There are two main points.

1. What’s going on right now with Elizabeth Warren and Hillary Clinton is the beginning of sticking the knife back into Bernie’s back. These two played a major role in doing that in 2016, and now they’re getting the band back together again. Okay, that’s no mystery.

The real question is, What are Bernie supporters and those who (one way or another) support the Democrats, going to do about it? When and if Warren and Clinton succeed in taking Bernie down–and of course Biden and the Obamas are onboard for this, as well–will Democrats (and Dem-supporting “leftists,” etc.) be so blinded by TDS that they’ll just say, “Oh well, we still have to vote for …” Warren, Biden, etc.?

I think this runs parallel to what some have said about “letting the CIA help with the impeachment”–it’s truly delusional, reactionary stuff. Likewise, people getting in a huff because “Bernie called her a liar on national television.” No problem, apparently, that Warren first called Bernie a liar. Even more, no problem that Warren’s whole life and career is based on a lie–a lie that, even now, she justifies with bullshit about how she “just loves her family so much.”

Indeed, Hillary’s intervention in the following days was very likely intended to take attention away from Warren’s attack on Sanders, as well as, of course, to once again put HRC out there as the potential savior at the convention.

It seems to me that the lesson here is that, if Bernie doesn’t get the nomination, no other candidate (from among the frontrunners) is acceptable, especially because of the role they will have played in taking down Bernie and his movement.

(Of course, with only a very few exceptions, I find the Democratic Party–and the Republican Party–completely unacceptable anyway. They are both steering media for capitalist power and money. However, unlike my leftist friends who presently justify supporting the Democrats, in impeachment and in re-taking the White House, “because they are the lesser evil,” I argue that the Democrats are the greater evil, the “best representatives” of the current form of capitalism, that the Republicans are in at least some cases the lesser evil, and that Trump is something different from either one.)

2. Accordingly, I think a Trump/Sanders election would be a very good thing. You may know that I have been writing a long series of articles, since March 2016, at counterpunch.org and now at off-guardian.org. These articles have been fairly controversial, especially with my many liberal and leftist friends, in academia and otherwise.

In any case, I started with an article with the subtitle, “Hoping for a Trump/Sanders election,” and now things have come somewhat full circle, at least in that we are looking at the possibility of this again. I have all kinds of issues with Bernie Sanders, though I have many more issues, and at least something close to qualitatively different issues, with the other frontrunners, and with those who may step in at the convention—very likely Hillary Clinton, and quite possibly Michelle Obama. I have two basic reasons for hoping Sanders can get the nomination and that there could be a Trump/Sanders election:

  • i. For Sanders to get the nomination there will have to be a very strong, dedicated, and focused movement, which will essentially have to defeat the powers-that-be in the Democratic Party and in whatever one wants to call the agglomeration of power mechanisms that form the establishment and the State. Sanders will have to do what Trump did with the Republican Party in 2016, except with Sanders and the power structures he will be up against (and with which he is more compromised than Trump ever was), this will be much, much harder. I really don’t think it can happen — and we’re seeing major moves in this effort toward eliminating Bernie just in the week that has passed since I started writing this. However, this does mean that, if Bernie can build (much further) and lead the movement to seriously address these power structures, and even beat them in some significant ways, then something tremendous will have been accomplished—“the harder they come, the harder they fall,” or at least I hope so.
  • ii. Despite what you and many others say and (I feel) are a bit too desperate to think, Sanders does have some things in common with Trump, at least thematically—and a lot of my arguments in my articles have to do with the importance of these themes being out there, in a way that they never would have been with any other Republican, Hillary Clinton or any of the other current frontrunners besides Sanders, and any of the other media with the very important exceptions of Tucker Carlson, Steve Hilton, and perhaps a couple others on Fox News (perhaps Laura Ingram)—and this is not only something that the anti-Trumpers absolutely hate, they hate it so much that they can’t even think about it.

That is, Trump and Sanders have in common that they 1) profess that they want to do things that improve the lives of ordinary working people, and 2) profess that they want to draw back militarism.

What I emphasize is that these terms would not even be on the table if it weren’t for Trump—and yes, to some extent if it weren’t for Bernie, but there is a way in which Bernie can only be out there at all because Trump has put these things on the table.

A lot of blowback against my articles has been against my argument that getting these terms and the discourse around them on the table is very important, a real breakthrough, and a breakthrough that both clarifies the larger terms of things and disrupts the “smooth functioning” (I take this from Marcuse) of the neoliberal-neoconservative compact around economics and military intervention.

Okay, maybe I’m right about this importance, maybe I’m not—that’s an argument I’ve dealt with extensively in my articles and that I’ll try to deal with definitively in further writing—but certainly a very important part of not letting Sanders be taken down by the other frontrunners (and HRC, and other nefarious forces, with Warren playing a special “feminist” and Identity Politics role here—a role that does nothing to help, and indeed does much to hurt, ordinary working people of all colors, genders, etc.) will be to further sharpen the general understanding of the importance of these themes.

Significantly, there is a third theme which has emerged since the unexpected election of Donald Trump—unexpected at least by the establishment and the nefarious powers (though they were thinking of an “insurance policy”); on this theme, I don’t know that Sanders can do much—working with the Democratic Party, he is too implicated in this issue, and he does not have whatever “protection” Trump has here.

What I am referring to are those nefarious powers behind the establishment and the ruling class, and that have taken on a life of their own — I don’t mind calling this the Deep State, but one can just think about the “intelligence community” and especially the CIA.

Whatever — the point is that Trump has had to call them out and expose them in ways that they obviously do not like, and also his agenda of a world where the U.S. gets along well-enough with China and Russia at least not to risk WWIII, or, perhaps more realistically, not to tip the balance of things such that Russia goes completely over to a full alliance with China, a “Eurasian Union,” which both Putin and Xi have spoken about, is not to their liking.

Whether Sanders would call out these nefarious factors if he were in a position to do so, I don’t know—I don’t have great confidence that he would—but it is also the case that he is not in a position to do so, these powers can easily dispose of Sanders in ways that they haven’t been able to, so far, with Trump.

If one does think these themes are important, especially the first two (with further discussion reserved regarding the powers-behind-the-powers), then I wish that Trump-haters would open their minds for a moment and think about what it apparently takes in our social system to even begin to get these themes on the table.

In any case, regarding Sanders, the movement he is building will have to go even further with the first two themes if Sanders is nominated, and at least go some distance in taking on the third theme. This applies even more if Sanders were to be elected. (This is where you might take a look at the 1988 mini-series, A Very British Coup — except that how things go down in the U.S. will not be so “British.”) Here again, though, if Sanders is to build a movement that can openly address these questions, this will be tremendous, a great thing.

So this is it in a nutshell: If Sanders were to be nominated, then there is the possibility, which everyone ought to work to make a reality, that we could have an election based around the questions, What can be done to improve the lives of ordinary working people?, and, What can be done to curb militarism and end the endless interventions and wars?

This would be a truly great thing.

In the terms I’ve used, this would create a much more general clarification of the terms of things and a further, major disruption at the edge of the system, a disruption to neoliberal economic and neoconservative military business-as-usual (and neither of these things are aligned with only one of the two so-called mainstream political parties, and thus this would be a disruption to this bullshit “two-party system,” too), and possibly there would be an even much larger opening to “real politics,” in other words radical systemic change.

Therefore, of course, no one should be surprised that the establishment and the nefarious powers will do absolutely anything to prevent things going this way—and they will do things both subtle and brutal, both completely behind-the-scenes and completely out in the open, and everything in-between.

With all this against even the possibility (the risk, for the powers-that-be) of real politics emerging against the anti-political social structures and ideologies, the last thing people ought to do is to get caught up in this bullshit that Elizabeth Warren and Hillary Clinton are peddling — with Biden and Buttigieg letting them take point for the time being.

Yes, there are some obnoxious jerks around Bernie — so what? For one thing, they are on the edge of the system, trying to do something.

This doesn’t mean these types should be accepted or supported regardless of what they say or do, but does anyone think there is a shortage of obnoxious jerks around Warren and Biden?

This is so important that I would even recommend that people who are determined anti-Trumpers not worry for the time being about my arguments about Trump and my view that, in the end, Trump has done and actually will do more on the themes that I take to be of most importance.

For those determined to get someone other than Trump in the White House, I don’t think it’s that important to talk about all the issues you have with Trump right now. I don’t think many of you are “reachable” on these points anyway—which doesn’t mean that I won’t still be out here making the argument for the Trump Clarification and the Trump Disruption.

For now, and until November, there is something much more important that anti-Trumpers need to be doing. (I mean at least those who are working with and working inside of the system, including with the impeachment stuff—and this includes all but a very small portion of the Left.)

There needs to be a concentrated effort to recognize that the themes discussed here, at least the economic and military themes, in their multi-faceted and complex ways, are the most important questions that have to be addressed if any substantial change is going to be made to our society.

There needs to be a concentrated effort to make it clear that, on the anti-Trump side, the only one who is pushing these themes is Bernie Sanders.

(Sorry — not to belabor the point, or, okay, to belabor it — but, yes, I do think the third theme, of the Deep State or whatever one wants to call it, is thoroughly integrated into what can actually be done on the first two themes, and beyond, and this is where I really wish that anti-Trump Democratic-Party supporters would interrogate their own extraordinary resistance to getting into this theme and deflecting consideration of this theme with picayune “questions” about precise definitions of what, by definition, is hidden behind many layers of power, the huge budget for which is itself a secret.)

There needs to be a concentrated effort to make it clear that the open efforts of Warren, CNN (to Sanders: “Did you say that?” To Warren, “How did it make you feel when Bernie said that?”—incredible), HRC, etc., to take down Bernie, are not acceptable; that the idea of just watching Bernie go down and then saying, “Oh well, let’s get back to the only thing in the world that matters” is not acceptable.

Much less is it acceptable to watch the Warren-Clinton tag-team (who are obviously preparing for a brokered convention, with Warren in the VP slot) not only take down Bernie but also do everything they can to move things away from all three of these themes and back to the “normalcy” of the neoliberal-neoconservative compact, covered over with some Identity-Politics rhetoric.

And don’t kid yourselves about the fact that this is what they are doing. Don’t let your hatred of Trump find you standing around twiddling your thumbs and saying, “Well, Warren does have a point.” That’s fine if you’re one of the liberal Democrats who isn’t bothered with “having the CIA help with the impeachment.”

If, instead, you really think you are part of some sort of resistance, and if you actually do think working people and militarism (and perhaps even a country that is under no definition “democratic,” even if you don’t accept that this is a question of the Deep State), then it’s time to hunker down and get working.

I think you’ll find that this work is not going to be nearly so easy as what has passed for “resistance” among the anti-Trump crowd thus far.

Brace yourselves for a steep learning curve. Truly good and creative human endeavors are never easy.

Bill Martin is a philosopher and musician, retired from DePaul University. He is completing a book with the title, “The Trump Clarification: Disruption at the Edge of the System (toward a theory).” His most recent albums are “Raga Chaturanga” (Bill Martin + Zugzwang; Avant-Bass 3) and “Emptiness, Garden: String Quartets nos. 1 and 2 (Ryokucha Bass Guitar Quartet; Avant-Bass 4). He lives in Salina, Kansas, and plays bass guitar with The Radicles

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riccotelaly
riccotelaly
Feb 5, 2020 12:41 PM

Bernie, need to fight back for us. If elected it will only get worse. He needs to use the word corruption and dump the word ‘friend’. The electorate thinks the House and senate are corrupt, so say it. He should be calling out Buttigieg publicly and ask him about the a software , Pete the Cheat financed that screwed up the count in Iowa.

Capitulating to ‘anyone but Trump theory is a betrayal of Bernie supporters.

Rhys Jaggar
Rhys Jaggar
Jan 31, 2020 6:16 PM

The thing you are failing to see here is that Trump did nothing particularly special last time: the Deplorables had simply had enough shit over enough years that their bullshitometers were fully sensitised.

So they listened to all the Deep State crap and said: ‘Screw You! We’re all gonna vote Trump and piss on your friggin’ parade!’

They did not think all that deeply, they just were absolutely adamant about what they DID NOT WANT.

And Trump just said: ‘I understand!’

The words ‘I understand’ are dynamite in politics. They are even more dynamite if it is said in a roundabout way, but the meaning is crystal clear to the target audience.

If Sanders wants to win, he has to prove to Main Street America that ‘HE UNDERSTANDS!’

He will not win speaking down to them, telling them he knows what is best for them.

They have had two generations of that and are absolutely sick and tired of it.

The way to victory for any US Presidential candidate in 2020 is showing that they understand, they care enough to DO SOMETHING TO HELP and they have the savvy NOT TO GET PUT ON A SPIKE BY THE DEEP STATE!

Seamus Padraig
Seamus Padraig
Jan 31, 2020 5:39 PM

Sanders will have to do what Trump did with the Republican Party in 2016, except with Sanders and the power structures he will be up against (and with which he is more compromised than Trump ever was), this will be much, much harder. I really don’t think it can happen …

I agree. For one thing, Bernie is no Trump; he’s just not a fighter. Bernie is weak. They already defrauded him once back in 2016, and he didn’t care. He went ahead and endorsed the woman who cheated him, and he even spent months criss-crossing the country stumping for her! Have we seen the merest scrap of evidence this year that Bernie finally plans to take the gloves off? No, we haven’t. He’s a lot like Jeremy Corbyn in that regard, and just like Jeremy Corbyn, I predict he will be defeated–not so much by the voters as by ‘his own’ party.

… but does anyone think there is a shortage of obnoxious jerks around Warren and Biden?

Just one little word should suffice: Hunter!

I think you’ll find that this work is not going to be nearly so easy as what has passed for “resistance” among the anti-Trump crowd thus far.

What has passed for “resistance” since 2016 is this:

1.) Working for the government for a while to sabotage Trump.

2.) Then, when you get found out and fired by him, getting a multi-million dollar contract to write some ‘tell-all’ book about how evil/stupid (take your pick) your ex-boss was.

3.) Then getting invited onto The View to promote it and prattle on about how you answer to some “higher calling” so that your serial violations of the law don’t matter–as opposed to, say, Trump’s serial violations of decorum, which obviously merit impeachment.

That’s exactly what “resistance” means to these wankers, and that’s one reason I am proud to say that I am not a part of it.

paul
paul
Jan 31, 2020 11:41 PM
Reply to  Seamus Padraig

Bernie = Jezza.
That’s all you need to know.

Seamus Padraig
Seamus Padraig
Feb 1, 2020 10:58 PM
Reply to  paul

Yup, exactly.

GEOFF
GEOFF
Jan 31, 2020 4:17 PM

Can’t see Mr Sanders being hero in waiting, didn’t he vote for the war in Iraq

Seamus Padraig
Seamus Padraig
Jan 31, 2020 6:08 PM
Reply to  GEOFF

No, credit where credit is due: voting for the Iraq War is one outrage Bernie is not guilty of.

GEOFF
GEOFF
Jan 31, 2020 9:37 PM
Reply to  Seamus Padraig

Fair comment I’ll retract that.

paul
paul
Jan 31, 2020 11:44 PM
Reply to  Seamus Padraig

He did support overthrowing the “communist dictators” in Venezuela, Bolivia, and anywhere else Bolton and Pompeo and Abrams decide to spread “freedom and democracy.”

Richard Le Sarc
Richard Le Sarc
Feb 2, 2020 1:59 AM
Reply to  paul

Sanders called Chavez a ‘..dead communist dictator’. How the eff does anyone believe that a creature who could utter that vicious lie will change ANYTHING? Sanders is the senile delinquent Obama.

scott
scott
Feb 9, 2020 1:36 AM
Reply to  GEOFF

“Sanders voted in favor of the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998, which included a “sense of the Congress” statement that “It should be the policy of the United States to support efforts to remove the regime headed by Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq and to promote the emergence of a democratic government to replace that regime.” He also voted in favor of a resolution that similarly stated, “Congress reaffirms that it should be the policy of the United States to support efforts to remove the regime headed by Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq and to promote the emergence of a democratic government to replace that regime.”

Geoff
Geoff
Feb 9, 2020 9:04 AM
Reply to  scott

Thanks, I thought so too

Binra
Binra
Jan 31, 2020 1:13 PM

Any person engaged in serious praxis aimed at real systemic change knows this, though it seems even the majority of such practitioners in present circumstances have subordinated whatever critical acumen they may have previously possessed to the seemingly omnipotent god of hatred toward Trump.

I had to look up praxis – ironically. Theory running ahead of practice is to be tested in the heart of the whole body – or else it becomes a systemic corruption of natural relation and communication – running a ‘head’ without heart under justifications of grievance and polarised vendetta.

The intent to enact ‘systemic change’ is in my opinion the underlying corruption -and its reinforcing polarised reactive expression – which can indeed be summarised as the god of hatred of ANYTHING that blocks or undermines a perceived and believed right to order and control the system.

Systemic replacement for relational being is a robot mind or golem that operates personae for the casting out of love as weakness and of hate as strength. Love of truth cannot abide in darkness of deceit and division and so love of hating ‘triumphs’ over life crucified and sacrificed to the sustainability of a system of control built around hate and fear.

Evil works its own destruction – and fear runs as self-fulfilling prophecy.
Aligning instead in a living heart – of whole bodied presence – is the gift of releasing allegiance to a systemic or symbolic representation running as a derivative placeholder in place of a real relationship.

Our times could be seen as a loveless (hateful and blind) global systemic control rising from behind and beneath appearances of relative freedoms to unimaginable subjection and destruction – both.
Aligning in the Idea of God is tested by not being delivered unto evil – but through it to the primary and innate qualities of Life-Aware – love, joy, peace, truth, beauty, freedom and power.

Perversion of the original and true desire of being is of a mind that runs ahead and as if apart. This is also a matter of allowing divergent or conflicted purposes to run at the same time with regard to the same thing. It splits a mind from its natural source of Will to run under threat of conflict, scarcity, and need for control.

Aligning in the true is the only way to release the dissonances of a false – not any attempt to act on or change the dissonant symptoms or attack and deny flagged causes of association with the symptoms.

The attempt to deal with the ‘dead’ is the ongoing allegiance to the framework of its belief – and giving life to that which takes all that is given, uses it as a weapon of further dependency and entrapment – and basis for demanding more.

Aligning in the ‘living’ is the gift of a mind renewed – because an alignment of connected support replaces the hacked mind of self-struggle painted over a world of lawlessness, sickness and death. Its nature is discernment of a mind and heart as one – in place of the subjection and denial of the heart’s knowing under narrative control or ‘asserting judgement’ as the basis of systemic rules by which to replace love and life with blind systemic controls – also known as ‘unconscious’.

Our freedom and spontaneity in life is naturally unselfconscious – and the desire to GET RID of a sense of self or othered obstruction is always a form of self-attack. Balance and flow of form and function find relational workability as a living field of synchronicity – that our systemic thinking calls ‘living systems’ – because we are already in Humpty Dumpty Land in terms of our conceptual framework – and believe we have to put a broken life or world or mind together again – and living from THAT is the protection and persistence of the belief in POWER TO BREAK wholeness as part of who we are, and what life is.

Struggle within this corrupted idea of power by which ‘Love is Dead!’ is the persistence of love’s denial under justified self exceptionalism.

If I were not living my day and my life in willingness to align true – why would I expect to find a like vibrational quality in my fellow beings? Or RECOGNISE it if I did? No – I would look ‘out’ to see the reinforcements and proofs for my withholding of blessing and withdrawal of presence.

If true witness is the revealing of the false as false, it is also allowing those who choose against their life to recognise that THEY are choosing amiss and so come to a willingness to make a different choice – even if it is the world and self they had learned to live by before the light came in. However, the nature of truth is not oppositional to the false and so is not a ‘praxis’ by which to ‘change’ a falsely based system – so much as an example of a truly extended relationship with which to align.

The idea ‘everyone can make a difference’ os propagandised to a collective mind capture – but in truth everyone is already a unique presence within the whole – and aligning in and bringing THAT into your already relations is a quality from which quantitative expressions will express differently. Qualities are subtle but tangible to discern in those who love truth rather than seek to possess and control it.

The idea of getting priorities in order is putting first things first – so as NOT to buy or be baited into a world ins which ‘everything is backwards’. I do not know that there is any other way than to be brought to no longer being able to live a loveless lie – and yet not knowing what truth or love is – excepting it is the Primary Need Now. Bringing attention present in alignment with desire and need to know is in a sense to be as a little child again. There is in Life that which gives us Life as a wholeness that includes and embraces our sense of self. The fear that truth annihilates self is only applicable to invested self-conceits. Love of truth is natural to its sharing.

A wronged sense of denied love and freedom in life is evident in our human world and its social and political organisation – but reacts as if to deny the deniers will of itself restore order where love and freedom are restored. We all feed the ‘monster’ of apparent necessity with sacrifices of life and lives that we are unable and unwilling to own and face within our self.

Change is ‘built in’ and the idea of possession and control is a parameter from which chaos increases – as the need for more control in fear of dispossession. How can this idea NOT self-destruct? But is a false idea destroyed or revealed to have NEVER been true – regardless the invested belief in it in place of receiving and sharing in the true?

Don’t write off the potential of anyone to make a different choice – no matter what pattern or system of choices they seem to be – because your gift of freedom is the only way to have it. I didn’t say make anyone choose against their will, or wait on the change in others as if that holds me hostage from my own freedom. Everyone sees different facets of entanglements that can only be released in their right timing.

Insofar as you bring your presence into relational expression, you are ‘voting’ – but not in the framing of an illusion of power. The idea of a higher quality communicating upon a carrier signal is of a quality of communication that communicates itself as a felt-knowing or zeitgeist. It is challenging to vibrate the heart’s love within a loveless sense of self or world, and calls on entirely different qualities of being than our learned habits of leverage, manipulation and evasion.

bob
bob
Jan 31, 2020 9:48 AM

Meanwhile britain does not leave the eu today rather begins the romantic process of further redeveloping its links ….

Tallis Marsh
Tallis Marsh
Jan 31, 2020 12:13 PM
Reply to  bob

Exactly! It was always going to be Brexit in name only (BRINO) with Theresa May and Boris at the helm (due to their establishment masters including the civil service). If the 2019 election hadn’t been transparently & despicably corrupt (with its uber smears of Jeremy Corbyn and the outright rigging with postal ballots) we would not be in this position. The truth must be that the estab had too much to lose to not rig it.

Will we be leaving all the EU institutions including the ECJ?

Why did Theresa May (and Boris) insidiously sign us up to the Global Compact for Migration? Why did Theresa May (and Boris) also insidiously sign us up to the EU/European Defence Union? Do some people not know what I am talking about? Well, there is a Media ‘D Notice’ on these subjects. if you need to find out about these things you will have to look to the alternative media like UK column and social media (like Twitter e.g Veterans for Britian) to find these things out.

Did you know Lord James of Blackheath was threatened for speaking about the EU Defence Union last year – that may tell you how important it is that the estab need keep most of the public unaware of the subject.

bob
bob
Jan 31, 2020 8:27 PM
Reply to  Tallis Marsh

he’s also been asked to resign now

lundiel
lundiel
Jan 31, 2020 8:43 AM

America’s most dangerous president was, imo, Obama. Trump has nothing on him, apart from his delusions over Israel, Trump has tried, and failed, to exercise control over the security state. Obama worked with the state while he mesmerised us with stunning speeches about equality and democracy as he signied off on regime change and assassinations.
Should she ever run, Michelle would be at least as dangerous. The Obamas can make people believe that they are ‘on their side’.

Antonym
Antonym
Jan 31, 2020 9:39 AM
Reply to  lundiel

Michelle is good looking and has brains. As they already have raked in the dough I doubt she will go back in the Shark tank. She knows the Obama spell has vaporized by the truth about US Deep state in Fairfax county and Lower Manhattan.
It was exactly Obama who was used to bail out uber capitalists like Goldman & Sach with tax payer money and FED printing.

paul
paul
Jan 31, 2020 11:46 PM
Reply to  lundiel

I think Oprah or Stormy Daniels should run.

Capricornia Man
Capricornia Man
Jan 31, 2020 6:54 AM

As repellent as Trump and his policies are, the Democrats’ impeachment bid deserves to fail because they did not attempt to impeach Bush II, whose offences were far graver.

My prediction: Trump will beat the impeachment. If Bernie were, by a miracle, to get the nomination, he could beat him. If the Democratic establishment scuppers Bernie in favour of a right-wing Democrat who offers little to blue-collar workers, their chance of winning will be slim. HRC, as a war-and-Wall Street type, would surely go down like a lead balloon with the ‘battlers’.

The outlook is not good.

Antonym
Antonym
Jan 31, 2020 12:55 AM

Bernie is a nice guy – too nice: no match for the shark pools from Fairfax county, Lower Manhattan or the Clinton clan . The 2016 DNC candidate selection revelations proved this.

The only untainted strong Democratic candidate is Tulsi Gabbard, but she has all Establishments against her.

sam
sam
Jan 31, 2020 12:40 AM

The Democrats can’t win whoever there is leading them. Hillary is certianly eyeing up the leadership role. Bernie, nice as he seems is just a marxist like Corbyn in the UK and look how well he did.
However stupid people might be they are still wary of marxism, think Venezuela
This book is worth a read, includes Bernie in it
‘Profiles in Corruption: Abuse of Power by America’s Progressive Elite’
Peter Schweizer

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 31, 2020 1:58 AM
Reply to  sam

I’d go further and say that the Americans can’t win, whoever is leading them.
The pool from which they make their selections was poisoned long ago.
And it makes me very sad to say that.
Our godless society is overflowing with people who long for moral leadership, but who can’t find it in today’s Washminster.
Personal pursuit of a decent inner life is always an option, but Washington and Westminster are addicted to the other kind – the moneyed surface of life.
The way things are right now, it’s extremely hard to say how a bridge from one kind to the other could possibly be built, but I keep looking…

Toby Russell
Toby Russell
Jan 31, 2020 7:55 AM
Reply to  wardropper

Well said.

My hopes for that bridge lie in the continuing collapse of materialism.

Capricornia Man
Capricornia Man
Jan 31, 2020 5:25 AM
Reply to  sam

Corbyn is a left-wing social democrat or, if you like, a democratic socialist.

Bernie’s similar, though not so ‘left’.

To learn what a Marxist is, a good political dictionary would be “worth a read”.

George Mc
George Mc
Jan 31, 2020 7:34 AM

To learn what a Marxist is, a good political dictionary would be “worth a read”.

Just make sure it was written before 1979.

BigB
BigB
Jan 31, 2020 8:08 AM
Reply to  George Mc

Actually, make sure it was written after. The Neue Marx-Lekture was a new reading of Marx that emphasised the psychology over the economy …highlighting the concept of Fetish. It emerged from Marx’s own handwritten clarifications for the second edition of Capital …only available in German. And only rediscovered in the 70s.

https://www.radicalphilosophy.com/article/the-neue-marx-lekture

George Mc
George Mc
Jan 31, 2020 8:34 AM
Reply to  BigB

I was facetiously referring to the neoliberal turn where “Marxism” was redefined as anything to the left of Genghis Khan.

George Mc
George Mc
Jan 31, 2020 6:31 PM
Reply to  BigB

I’ve written a biggish response to this which seems to have disappeared and I don’t want to insert it again in case it comes up twice. But to simplify: “It emerged from Marx’s own handwritten clarifications for the second edition of Capital” seems to be misleading. The link you supply refers to:

Both Backhaus and Reichelt date the birth of the NML (i.e. Neue Marx-Lekture) to Backhaus stumbling upon a copy of the first edition of Capital in the library of the Frankfurter Walter-Kolb-Studentenheim in 1963

The following interpretation does not depend on “hand written clarifications” from Marx but on a point of view deriving from Adorno – whose sympathy with Marx is, to say the least, dubious.

BigB
BigB
Feb 1, 2020 11:56 AM
Reply to  George Mc

I’m sorry, I did not get the reference. As per NML: Michael Heinrich describes it differently in his lectures. He bases his interpretation on MEGA – the collected works of Marx and Engels – which is not all available in English. So, NML emerged in the 70s and was revived by Heinrich later.

Mike Ellwood
Mike Ellwood
Feb 1, 2020 9:12 AM

I think he would use the term democratic socialist rather than social democrat. The latter is too redolant of the SDP which split the party in the 1980s.

paul
paul
Jan 31, 2020 12:00 AM

Sanders is just another irrelevant mediocrity.

Fair dinkum
Fair dinkum
Jan 30, 2020 11:42 PM

Since Reagan’s Presidency, all US elections have been about rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.
The ship may be sinking slowly, but the outcome will be the same.

Gall
Gall
Jan 31, 2020 12:11 AM
Reply to  Fair dinkum

I’d say it was long before Ronnie got elected to office. Remember it was Carter and Zyb who got involved in the imperial quick sand of Afghanistan (mixing metaphors here) that is after being run out of ‘Nam by a bunch of angry natives who had gotten tired of America “being a force for good” by reining “freedom and democracy” on them from the bomb bays of B 52s which I think is going to a be similar situation to what will soon happen in Iraq if we dawdle too long.

Elections have in reality become all pomp with no circumstance. Flip a coin and it always comes up heads. It’s a stacked deck that public are asked to play every two years thinking the odds are in their favor when it never really is. Might as well head to Vegas following the dusty trail of Hunter S Thompson.

Charlotte Ruse
Charlotte Ruse
Jan 31, 2020 11:57 AM
Reply to  Fair dinkum

The day FDR dumped Henry Wallace in favor of Harry Truman the US was f–ked.

Richard Le Sarc
Richard Le Sarc
Feb 1, 2020 7:41 AM
Reply to  Charlotte Ruse

The day that the private banking consortium, laughably named the ‘Federal Reserve’ was set up, in 1913, was a sign-post to serfdom.

Charlotte Ruse
Charlotte Ruse
Feb 1, 2020 3:43 PM

Truman ushered in the brutality of the military/security/surveillance corporate state

Seamus Padraig
Seamus Padraig
Jan 31, 2020 3:09 PM
Reply to  Fair dinkum

That phase is over. Now that the Titanic’s going down, it’s no longer about rearranging any deck chairs, but about fighting over the life boats!

paul
paul
Jan 31, 2020 11:49 PM
Reply to  Seamus Padraig

Don’t worry, all the billionaires have bought their bolt holes in New Zealand.

Charlotte Russe
Charlotte Russe
Jan 30, 2020 11:31 PM

It’s not all that complicated Obama laid the groundwork ensuring Bernie’s defeat when he interfered in deciding who would Chair the DNC. Tom Perez was Obama’s pick. Bernie wanted Keith Ellison. Perez guaranteed neoliberal centrist Dems would maintain control. Tom Perez didn’t disappoint– his nominations for the 2020 Democratic Convention standing committees are a like a who’s who of centrism. Most of the folks on this “A list” would fit quite nicely in the Republican Party.

Bernie a FDR Democrat, is considered too radical by the wealthy who enjoy their Trumpian tax cuts and phony baloney stock market profits. If Trump, was just a bit less crude and not so overtly racist he’d be perfectly acceptable. Bernie, who thinks the working-poor are entitled to a living wage, healthcare, a college education, and clean drinking water is anathema to the affluent liberals who like everything just the way it is. They long for the Obama days when two wars were quietly expanded to seven, when the Wall Street crooks got a pass, and when health insurance lobbyists had their way with the federal government–the CIA was absolutely ecstatic with Obama. Trump was a bit of a speed bump for the security state, but nothing really threatening as he stuffed the pockets of the arms industry and the surveillance state with billions of working-class tax dollars. The Orangeman is having a few internecine battles with the intelligence agencies, but in the end they thoroughly had their way with the buffoon.

Bernie on the other hand, is a bit more complex. He can’t be as easily attacked. Of course, the mainstream media news has all the usual Corbyn tricks in their bag, and Bernie could fall to the wayside like Corbyn if he’s incapable of unapologetically fighting back. Bernie’s working-class supporters want to see him give his attackers the one-two-punch and knock them out before the DNC Convention.

If Bernie manages to win numerous primaries the threat won’t come from Warren or Hillary that’s so 2016. The new insidious “Bernie enemy” is billionaire Bloomberg. Who is waiting in the wings……If Biden takes a deep dive, Daddy Warbucks will make a play to cause a brokered convention. And that’s when Perez and his Republican/Dems will takedown Bernie. Bernie’s followers MUST come out swinging and not capitulate like they did last time. They have to force the issue, create a stir and threaten to abandon the Dems to start a Workers Third Party. Young progressives have this one big shot at making a difference, and they can’t allow themselves to be sheepdogged into voting for another neoliberal who’s
intent on maintaining the status quo. Remember, if you don’t move forward you’re actually moving backward into planetary ecocide.

milosevic
milosevic
Jan 31, 2020 1:30 PM

threaten to abandon the Dems to start a Workers Third Party

actually doing so, would accomplish vastly more than just “threatening”, unless anybody is really hoping for a remake of Hope and Change, which would change nothing except the specific flavour of Identity Politics secret sauce disguising the foul taste of neoliberal fascism.

Richard Le Sarc
Richard Le Sarc
Feb 2, 2020 2:03 AM
Reply to  milosevic

It’ll be 2016 all over again. Bernie gets cheated, and surrenders pathetically, then enough of his supporters fail to turn out, and the oligarchs’ choice, Trump, romps home again. A puppet-play with an changing script, but an unvarying ending.

Gall
Gall
Jan 30, 2020 11:28 PM

Hey check this out. Seems the DNC is shaking in their boots about the possibility of a third party hijacking their “base”:

https://www.mintpressnews.com/liberal-establishment-warning-third-parties-not-to-ruin-2020-election/264460/

Here’s one from Whitney implying that they needn’t worry because plans are in the works to install King Cyrus II as the permanent ruler with the help of his Zionist friends in the Department of Hebrew Security:

https://www.mintpressnews.com/liberal-establishment-warning-third-parties-not-to-ruin-2020-election/264460/

Even so it looks like Trump has decided to get rid of us noninterventionist and antiwar naysayers by fully bringing in the Dispensationalist Armageddon rapture embracing nut jobs who stand with the Talmudic genocidal racists in Israel who believe that Jesus Christ is boiling for an eternity in excrement and that his mother Mary was a whore:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/52918.htm

I wish that this insanity was fantasy.

Charlotte Ruse
Charlotte Ruse
Jan 31, 2020 12:18 PM
Reply to  Gall

Thanks for posting the link. It’s worth reiterating this excerpt from the article:

“The left-liberal mantra is: support the Dems despite their politics, not because of their politics, to avoid an even greater evil. Their solution, however, is to reward bad behavior by pledging – even before the primaries – to vote for whomever the Democrats dredge up.

Further, the best way for the Democrats to avoid losing votes to a progressive third party is to preempt their issues for combatting global warming, reducing income inequality, dismantling the national security state, and ending militarism. A left alternative in the electoral arena challenges the Democrats to be progressive. Otherwise, they have little incentive to raise these crucial issues and instead can content themselves by continuing to whip the dead horse of Russiagate. Removing a third-party challenge from the left is tantamount to encouraging the Democrats to shift to the right with the assurance that their progressive-leaning captured constituencies, such as ethnic minorities and labor, have nowhere else to go. “

mark cutts
mark cutts
Jan 30, 2020 10:37 PM

Hi Bill

we have witnessed in the UK the defamation of Corbyn the ‘ Left Disrupter ‘ as he wanted to throw back the normal state of political play.

He and the well meaning Labour Party was headed off at the pass.

We have to remember that the Ruling Class have to have fall back positions and that Biden is better than Bernie as is Warren and so on.

It appears to me that the DNC also has its fallback positions too and Bernie will be chopped by the Super Delegates once again on the altar of ‘ electabilty ‘ ( read any form of Socialism – American or British is not acceptatble to the PTB ) and that is how it may end.

The battle at the moment in the UK Labour Party is which leader will back up and support extra Parliamentary action in resistance to this very right wing Tory government?

In the US the thing is the same if Bernie doesn’t get the nomination.

Personally I would think that he would be a plus ( despite his foreign policy views ) but remember that Trump was a maverick Republican yet I’m not sure that Sanders would veer over to that position.

If he did then the ” action ” part of the steep learning curve would have to kick in to defend him and more to the point his genuinely progressive policies.

In the UK now Corbyn as the personification of ‘ Socialist ‘ threat is no longer doorstepped by the British media.

Instead the installation of a Leftish Centrist by the media ( i.e. a person that is -no threat to the existing order ) is a requirement.

This is all under the guise of a ” Strong Opposition ” to the right wing government.

Warren – not Biden seems to be that kind of favourite for the Ruling Class should Trump fall.

We had Neil Kinnock and Tony Blair – you in the US will get Warren.

I wish Bernie and his backers weel but I don’t see it happening.

Maybe Tulsi Gabbard in another 4 years?

She and AOC are very good But this is not their time.

Not yet.

Richard Le Sarc
Richard Le Sarc
Jan 31, 2020 1:48 AM
Reply to  mark cutts

When I think of how Corbyn refused to fight back against ENTIRELY mendacious and filthy vilification as an ‘antisemite’, I think it might be possible that the MOSSAD told him that if he resisted he might end up, dead in his bath, like John Smith.

bevin
bevin
Jan 30, 2020 9:38 PM

Where the world weary gather to tell us how they have been let down.
Bill nails it here:
“…i. For Sanders to get the nomination there will have to be a very strong, dedicated, and focused movement, which will essentially have to defeat the powers-that-be in the Democratic Party and in whatever one wants to call the agglomeration of power mechanisms that form the establishment and the State. Sanders will have to do what Trump did with the Republican Party in 2016, except with Sanders and the power structures he will be up against (and with which he is more compromised than Trump ever was), this will be much, much harder….”

Anyone who believes that elections, as such, lead to great changes needs a keeper. And one who can read the US Constitution aloud for preference.
But this is not to say that at a time like this-and there have been very few of them in US history- when there is the possibility of a major candidate challenging some of the bases of the ruling ideology-albeit by doing little more than running on a platform of refurbished Progressivism- there is really no excuse for not insisting that the challenge be made and the election played out.
Sanders is not just challenging the verities of neo-liberalism but, implicitly undermining the political consensus that has supported the Warfare State since 1948.
The thing about Bernie is that he is authenticated by the enemies that he has enrolled against him and the dramatic measures that they are taking against him. Among those enemies are the Black Misleadership Class, and the various other faux progressives who are revealing themselves to be last ditch defenders of the MIC, Israel- AIPAC is now ‘all in’ in Iowa and New Hampshire- and the Insurance industry. It is an indication of the simplicity of Bernie’s political task that no section of Congress gives more support to the Healthcare scammers than the representatives of the community most deprived by the current system. If he manages to get through to the people and persuade them that he will fight for Free Healthcare for all and other basic and long overdue social and economic reforms he can break the hold that the political parties have over a system everyone understands is designed to make the rich-who own both parties- richer and the great majority poorer. That has been the way that things have been going in the USA for at least 45 years.

Gall
Gall
Jan 30, 2020 8:56 PM

Here’s the point you’ve missed here Bill and that Bernie had a mass appeal to the Independents that is until he sold out to the “Democratic” establishment which out of the two parties has to be the least democratic since it adopted the elitist and plutocratic Super Delegate system that can ride roughshod over the actual democratic will of the voters.

Of course a cosmetic change has been made that these delegates aren’t allowed to vote until the Convention but as I said it is “cosmetic” since that was originally the way this undemocratic system was set up in the “Democratic” party until Hillary Clinton used it as a psychological weapon during that sham called a “primary” to convince the hoi polo that her nomination or more accurately coronation was already a foregone conclusion.

There is also another factor that most voters are not aware of and that is the so called “Democratic” party has come up with a dictatorial “by law” that can nullify the result of the primary if the candidate isn’t considered “democratic” enough by the Chairman of the DNC which in Bernie’s case is very possible since technically he is an Independent running as a “Democrat”. This is what Lee Camp the “Nuclear Option”.

Explained here in his inimitable style:

https://www.filmsforaction.org/watch/lee-camp-the-dncs-secret-nuclear-option-to-stop-bernie-sanders-and-what-we-can-do-about-it/

Personally I gave up on Bernie after he sold out and shilled for that warmongering harpy Hillary who if elected would accept it as a mandate to launch WW III while ironically trying to convince us all that the “noninterventionist”, “antiwar” candidate was actually the greater of the two evils.

Yeah right.

Anyway no longer have any faith in the two party system. As far as I’m concerned they can both go to hell. I’ve already made my choice:

https://www.markcharles2020.com

He probably needs to adjust his message more to appeal to those of us who tend to be more Libertarian and is not exactly a Russell Means but with a little help from the American Indian Movement and others can probably “triangulate” his appeal to cover a broader political spectrum. Instead of what has been traditionally known as the “left”.

Paul Spencer
Paul Spencer
Jan 31, 2020 6:27 AM
Reply to  Gall

See Joe Rogan endorsement. Also, check out the articles from the Ron Paul Insitute for Peace and Prosperity. The perspective of their main editor, Daniel McAdams, is at least true to the old Libertarian code of ‘leave folks alone’. In today’s terms that means quit bombing and otherwise causing trouble.

Gall
Gall
Jan 31, 2020 8:14 AM
Reply to  Paul Spencer

Exactly. This should be the type of Foreign Policy America should have, that the public in general keep demanding but really hasn’t existed if one looks at actual history:

https://www.globalresearch.ca/america-has-been-at-war-93-of-the-time-222-out-of-239-years-since-1776/5565946

Greg Bacon
Greg Bacon
Jan 30, 2020 8:43 PM

After Obama, the golden liar and mass-murderer and now Tubby the Grifter, another liar and mass-murderer, I have no desire to vote in 2020, unless Tulsi is on the ticket.

If Sanders is smart and survives another back-alley mugging by the DNC and the Wicked Witch of the East, and gets the nod, he’ll take on Tulsi–Mommy–as his VP.
If he does that, then Trump, Jared the Snake and Princess Bimbo will have to find another racket in 2021.

Gall
Gall
Jan 30, 2020 11:33 PM
Reply to  Greg Bacon

Yeah Trumpenstein is a far cry from the Silver Tongued Devil O-Bomb-em. Even so both of them sold us a bill of goods that neither of them delivered on.

But hey that’s politics in America at least since Neoliberal prototype Wilson which is lie your ass off until you get elected at least.

Willem
Willem
Jan 30, 2020 8:31 PM

Much magical thinking here.

If we act now and support Sanders things will change for the better?

I surely hope so, but hope and change is soo 2008.

And if the Hildebeast enters the race, life on earth will end?

Don’t think so.

Perhaps we should do this different this time. Get away from the identity politics, look what is really needed, and demand for that, not caring about ‘leadership’. You know, French yellow vests style. Actually if you look a little bit outside of the MSM bubble, you see demonstrations and people demanding better treatment from the government and corporations everywhere.

The US 2020 elections, will be a nothing burger I predict. Like all elections are nothing burgers and if they are not they will fake it, or call it ‘populism’ that needs to be stopped (and will be stopped).

I would have voted Sanders though, if I could vote for Sanders, Similar as I would have voted for Corbyn if I could have voted for Corbyn. Voting is a tic, a habit, an addiction that is difficult to get rid of, but deadly in the end since we have nothing to vote for, except to vote for more for them at the cost of everyone else, no matter what politicians say

It’s liberating to lose some of your illusions and silly reflexes, although a bit painful in the beginning as is with all addictions. The story used to ‘feel’ so good.

See also https://act.represent.us/sign/the-problem/

Richard Le Sarc
Richard Le Sarc
Jan 31, 2020 1:50 AM
Reply to  Willem

If voting changed anything, it would be outlawed.

Gezzah Potts
Gezzah Potts
Jan 31, 2020 7:49 AM

Emma Goldman I think….
Short, sharp article for you to peruse: ‘Don’t Play The Capitalist Game! Don’t Vote!’ at Leftcom.

Richard Le Sarc
Richard Le Sarc
Feb 1, 2020 7:46 AM
Reply to  Gezzah Potts

Ta, Gezzah. Voted once, and then gave it up, for the sake of self-respect.