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Ash writes: "I'm looking forward to backing Sanders in Philadelphia and beyond. But I'll vote for the Democrat either way."

Peace Dove. (image: Ellen Miffitt)
Peace Dove. (image: Ellen Miffitt)

I Will Vote for the Democratic Nominee

By Marc Ash, Reader Supported News

23 May 16


e have been clear from day one: We prefer, welcome, embrace Bernie Sanders and his game-changing campaign. We sincerely hope he can still win the Democratic presidential nomination in November. With Sanders we see the best chance for fundamental change.

Our concerns with Hillary Clinton remain unchanged. We have laid out the case ad infinitum. If you like life under a security blanket, she’s a solid choice. A Clinton presidency would maintain, perhaps strengthen, a very unjust and corrupt system.

But this leads us unavoidably to a different kind of revolution, one just as ambitious as Sanders’ political revolution: Donald Trump’s fascist revolution in the making. Make no mistake about it, Donald Trump would absolutely, by orders of magnitude, launch a far greater assault on democracy and international law than Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton.

Trump’s Nazi-inspired rallies are a warning. They are a warning that every American would be well advised to heed. What we learned from George W. Bush is that political suicide is possible and the consequences can be catastrophic.

The Bernie-or-Busters (More on political suicide)

The entire Bernie-or-Bust concept is fraudulent on its face. It’s an attempt by individuals – whoever they might be, and it’s not clear who they are – acting entirely on their own, to commandeer Sanders’ political revolution for their own political ends, whatever those might be. Bernie, the movement’s namesake, has exactly nothing to do with it. Far from it.

From day one, Bernie Sanders has made it absolutely clear that his decision to run as a Democrat was intended to strengthen and unify the Democratic Party, not divide it and destroy it. Sanders, Clinton, and O’Malley, while he was still in the race, explicitly pledged to unify against whoever the Republican candidate might be.

The Bernie-or-Busters should rename themselves the “My-Personal-Political-Fantasy-or-Bust,” because in reality that’s what it is, however poorly defined. It is certainly nothing that Bernie Sanders has promoted or participated in. Suggesting so is categorically disingenuous.

If Bernie says unify, I will unify.

Managing the Next President

At a point less than a year from now, we will awaken one morning with Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, or Donald Trump as President of the United States. At that moment every American who cares about the future and direction of the country needs to be ready to go to work with or without the blessing of the political establishment.

Historically, democracy functions best when the people lead and the politicians follow. Yes, that does in fact work. Who would be easiest to manage efficiently?

If you are not a billionaire the answer is simple: Bernie Sanders. He will be the most responsive and cooperative with community based citizen groups. That leaves Clinton and Trump.

Trump has made his contempt for intrusive little people mettling in the affairs of the ruling class abundantly clear. With Trump you can expect a Bush style no-holds-barred assault on democracy and international law, in addition to abortion rights, civil rights, and individual rights in general.

That leaves Hillary Clinton. Can she be “managed?” Short answer: far better than Trump, not nearly as well as Sanders. The key to understanding Hillary Clinton the politician is her belief, despite all evidence to the contrary, that she is a progressive. Clearly it is a delusion. But perhaps a useful delusion.

What would Hillary Clinton do to prove herself a progressive? It’s a tantalizing question that may already have been answered by her husband during his presidency.

There were positive takeaways from President Bill Clinton’s tenure. One very interesting and often overlooked development was a tolerance of dissent, leftist dissent particularly. President Bill Clinton was not a progressive and did not act progressively. Nor, however, did he attempt to destroy progressives or progressive organizing.

The left was free to organize in the Clinton years. That fueled, among other things, the rise of the Green Party. By 2000 the Greens had a real chance to accomplish something. What they did with that chance is a different subject. But there was no question that the Clinton years were fertile ground for the growth of the American political left.

In truth, Obama has been significantly less tolerant of progressives than Bill Clinton. But that’s another piece altogether.

So while it would be unwise to hold your breath waiting for President Hillary Clinton to act progressively, you could probably feel a bit safer doing so yourself than you would be with a Generalissimo Trump at the helm.

I’m looking forward to backing Sanders in Philadelphia and beyond. But I’ll vote for the Democrat either way.

Marc Ash is the founder and former Executive Director of Truthout, and is now founder and Editor of Reader Supported News.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News. your social media marketing partner
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