Calling Donald Hitler is an insult to Hitler.

 

Recently, North Korean state media compared our leader to Adolf Hitler. I have been hearing this comparison a lot recently and it just seems lazy. Now let us be clear, Adolf was one of the worst entities ever to be forcibly dealt with by Western soceity. We were right to dispose of his Reich and the burden it put on Europe, minorities across the continent and the world. No one in their right mind wants to go back to any life similar to that. However, should we be comparing our present time to the age of the radio? Our president is not Hitler. Our president is barely a hack.

Hitler had it rough, Hitler didn’t have a small million dollar inheritance. Hitler got rejected from art school and decided to follow his interests in politics. Hitler made a plan for himself. Donald has gotten caught up in something he barely understands. Hitler didn’t get any help from Russia either. Adolf  has for almost a century been the go to example for the devil on earth, the world’s greatest evil, and, of course, the perfect historical excuse for a pre-emptive strike on an enemy. The name today though has almost lost its meaning, like the word fascism, the ideology tied to the man. Both sides of the aisle shout out fascist and Nazi without really taking their comparison seriously. The overuse of these power words and historical comparisons has drastically hampered our ability to talk about these issues with any seriousness or urgency. So, to call our president Hitler is an insult to Hitler. It is an insult to our basic understanding of high school history. And much like this entire debacle, calling him that is an insult to our intelligence. Who out there is not already sick of hearing the comparison?

Donnie didn’t create a nationalistic party like Adolf, he hi-jacked a party that had for the better part of 50 years been marinating in Cold War fears and American gung-ho-erry. While Adolf crafted his image when he was put in jail after the Munich Beer Hall coup in 1923, Donald spent his time being a late 20th century mega-crook and TV personality. Are we trying to insinuate that The Art of the Deal is somehow equivalent to Mein Kampf?  Donald may have tried to take ideas from Hitler, like his Muslim registry, but only a true showman or corruptable idiot would publicly admit to planning on making a registration of minorities in the early 21st century before an election.

Perhaps the closest thing the two men have in common is their relationship with the media in the branding of their goals. Donald made his last name synonymous with success, a name which was apparently changed from Drumpf. Hitler made his party synonymous with making Germany great again. Both have used the strategy of insulting and discrediting the media to keep their product effective. Fake news! Only for Hitler this was the Lügenpresse (lying press). Today in Germany this is a taboo word that represents and highlights the worst parts of their history. This is nothing new. It is an old trick used by the forces of the right to distract from certain realities and rile up support. While Hitler used the radio as a terrifying powerful orator, Donald has turned to Twitter to blabber on and commit acts of nonsense.

If you want to make a comparison, let’s say that Donald is the member of your family you hate the most while playing monopoly.  If we keep comparing him to a dictator that will be exactly what people expect and eventually accept as a reality. Donald probably isn’t that important in the end. When Hitler took his own life the Third Reich went with him. Donald is simply riding the wave of new right-wing populism, if he fails, the wave continues and we remain blind to the real issues that are far more pressing than what some jabroni tweeted or who is pulling his strings.

The hardest goal for anti-populists will be to remain focused when so much political and media stimuli are being thrown around. There are many ways to combat fake news claims, including; human editors, fact checking sights, crowdsourcing, and tech solutions. However, all these solutions come with their own limitations that must also be better understood. Editors are reliable but they can also be slow and corruptible. Crowd sourcing and fact checking can be democratic but it can be biased sometimes too. It seems whether it be a newspaper, radio or twitter, it comes down to our own judgement to stop megalomania and the spreading of misinformation.

I am with Her…Again

What an election cycle, eh? Now, I must say, I had been on the Bernie train before it even got on the tracks. Days went by where I was hovering over the refresh button. I had read about Burlington a lot since visiting there myself a couple times during college. The city itself is just so amazing and I went so far as to drive over five or six hours just to show a visiting signorina what I considered one of America’s finest gems. This brought me to Bernie, his progressive and refreshing policies, and our struggle. The more I read the more I wanted this man to run for president. I had completely forgotten we were trying to get our first woman in the oval office. I had utterly forgotten that I already knew who the President was going to be in 2016. However, Bernie was offering something she could never; new trajectory for American politics. The waiting continued and he still had not announced his candidacy. Maybe people are actually too afraid of a socialist inspired hell scape after all, I thought. Back then I had already been through several of those European market socialist hell holes and I always came to a similar conclusion, or question. The right wingers are still alive and well in these countries as much as they are in the States. However, these pro-religious, mostly rural, and sometimes very anti-immigrant communities were (more or less) fine with having single-payer health care and affordable higher education. If a bunch of gun toting blame seekers could accept that in one country, I thought, why not mine? Most people would argue, well no person or country are the same, and that is just the way it is. But that is exactly what Bernie went up against in America. He went up against the myth that nothing can change, against the myth that affordable health and education are terrifying phantoms and deadly day dreams, and he was right to do so. And although he may have lost he proved a moral obligation exists to keep fighting no matter what the odds. Now we have to reflect on that while moving forward with her.

A sense of creeping liberosis (the desire to care less about things) found me this election year. This was despite previously thinking it might be interesting to actually be in America for 2016. The train wreck we all watch and scream for while the world falls apart all around us, the ultimate hunger games, who wouldn’t want front row seats to that? And as much as politics may annoy you, and you might be done with it, it is never done with you. Politics simultaneously cares and doesn’t give a shit about you. It is in many ways the balancer between you and the community, between the individual and the poli (Greek for city). So if you are displeased with politics as it stands don’t ignore it, join it, shape it, breathe your own uniqueness into it. That is something I can admire Hillary Clinton for. When she saw a corrupted political system she didn’t back down to it, didn’t hide away from the public eye, she went right after it, talons drawn. She has also been an inspiration for women to join into the modern political fray and there is absolutely nothing wrong with increasing citizen participation and turning what used to be a men’s game into what it should be; a citizen’s game.

The convention is finished and while thinking over all the events I was softly brought back to that feeling of waiting. Waiting for what, I thought. And while we are waiting, what are we enduring? While waiting for Bernie I was waiting for real discussion, real issues, and less petty politics. However, it seems like we are now a society magnetized toward pettiness. The road ahead is a road frequently traveled by. The footsteps and loose stones are familiar to both JFK and Nixon. I don’t expect a political revolution from Hillary, but I do expect political backwardness to thrive if Drumpf wins and the last thing I want in America is for us to take steps and possibly bounds in the opposite direction. And that is why I’m with her now (again). Although I also despise the lesser of two evils choice that is forced down our throats like political extortion, that is the lay of the political landscape. As much as I would love to give more support to a third party, be it Gary Johnson or Jill Stein, I am not willing to let America dive into being a more populist Reich than it already is. Maybe in the near future we can come up with a multi-party system that isn’t hell bent on demagoguery and catchy slogans.

As mentioned before, eight years ago I was already hoping Clinton would get the nomination in 2016. It was clear to me then that she was a good choice after seeing her commitment to the great game. Like Obama’s comical anger translator Luther said, Khaleesi is coming to Westeros. However, there is a part of the left that has yet to decide if Clinton is a Khaleesi, coming to free us from low waged chains or if she is a less incestual Cersei just twisting and manipulating her way to the top. She became Clinton the climber, the fighter, and our woman. But is this woman a monster in the same league as Donald Drumpf or does she utilize a necessary evil to counter such forces? Perhaps it is neither, perhaps she is the Lady Lizard overlord we have conspired her to be. Or perhaps there is only one way to fight the corruption of the GOP establishment and their Mafioso of candidates, with fire of her own. When she viciously attacked Obama in 2008, I understood it was part of the game she had to play, I didn’t think any less of her. Then I visited Burlington, Vermont and heard about Sanders. This was a man I shared values with. The only candidate to say climate change is our greatest security threat. Something that even the Department of Defense has had to admit. The main difference for me between Bernie and Hillary was that for one of them the ends justified the means and for me, well, I have seen where that kind of politics has led us.

The one thing that has hindered me from being vocal about my compromise with the Clinton campaign (besides her donors and actions) has been their air of condescension. And this very well may be her undoing. Especially this phrase; fall in line. I was seriously disappointed in the DNC for coming out and saying something that sounded like the echoes of an SS officer telling his Nazi underlings to keep digging ditches for corpses. Now, I know the Democrats are not that bad. However, it is the kind of attitude that turns away so many potential Hillary supporters from team Bernie. It is not what I expect from the Democratic Party. There has been all this talk about Bernie bros yet, I have met more Clinton clingers who rarely seem to look at things from a different perspective. They say things like, ‘oh I have supported Hillary since I was kid’, which is fine if you have an open mind. But today Clinton is using the same fear that the Republicans have used for decades to sway voters. Vote for her or the King Joffrey of U.S. politics will win. (Can’t stop the GoT references). You don’t want that do you?! Fall in line. And every time a Sandernista hears that you will lose their vote automatically and create division among people who share the same values.

(While I am not quite sure if the online community considers Sandernista an insult by insinuating Bernie supporters are left leaning commies reminiscent of the by gone era of the Red Scare, I think it appropriately captures the revolutionary zeal of the movement).

I also think that any serious Sandernista will realize the day before election day that principles aside, she is our girl. Again it is unfortunate that our political system is caught in a bi-polar Cold War political party shit storm and that we can’t show more love for other parties, new ideas, and progressive attitudes. It is perhaps even more unfortunate that we have to deal with Mr. Drumpf. Or maybe he is exactly what we need to show that this system does not work and is too adept to inspiring blind hatred.

I still cannot decide which is worse or more dangerous. Giving the man the attention he so craves or ignoring him completely. I have settled somewhere in the middle in that I recognize he exists but will not refer to him by his specifically curated brand name. Either way the man inspires almost nothing of value. He is the crappy phone charger you borrow from a friend. He fills that shallow racist hole in your life that you were looking to fill, it might not be your charger, he might not be your favorite Republican, but like many before him he will slip right in between you and power, barely functioning and keeping you satisfied with more entertainment than you can afford with your data plan.

Jokes aside though, Jeff Weaver, Sander’s former campaign manager points out the real danger here. “I think some people on the Democratic side who think that, you know, Trump is such a buffoon that it’s already won — but I think he’s a very dangerous opponent and I think he certainly has the ability to win as well,” he said (Byrnes,2016). This ability for Drumpf to win will certainly increase alongside Clinton supporter’s condescending attitudes toward Bernie supporters.

Democracy has weirdly become some crappy ‘reality’ TV show and Bernie showed this to a lot of people. Not so much to the people on the right who already think it is a farce and will hate the government no matter what it does, but people in the Democratic party, who finally saw that even our most left-leaning political juggernaut is more center than we thought. I also had no idea until this election that the DNC had opening musical acts. Is this normal? Since when do we have to tempt voter’s attention with entertainment, this is their livelihoods that are at stake when politicians step into the ring. If they are not already invested in this process something is wrong with our democracy.

The post-internet media shit show madness is basically complacency disguised as rage at this point. We will see nothing new despite the redness of their faces.

For Drumpf, the wall issue works well because of the kind of people that would react to exactly that particular issue. It is an amazing tent to be under. The only people that would ever support, what for most people is a ridiculous plan, are the same kind of people who still think hordes of immigrants coming to America is our biggest problem. These people cannot fathom why other countries even exist. Or that many migrants do not come to America because it is so great, but because it is less violent, if only a for a little bit. For them America = Number 1 forever. It is a barely inspiring and quite ignorant mentality. Of course, we do need to have some border controls, but a wall, for free!? If we learned anything from the Cold War it should be that, whether there is a wall or not, people will get past it to get to the west, and it is not going to be cheap.

This 2016 election has merely shown us what we have known for a long time. Being corrupt, conniving, and getting to the top is part of the American dream and is to be idolized. This is nothing insanely new. The only thing that has changed is the visibility of this truth. It seems the more this truth of corruption is revealed the less people want to be a part of the political system. The New York Times even published an article pointing out that the nominees are only chosen by just 9% of our total population(Pearce, Parlapiano, 2016).  And well, I taint no statistician but that don’t sound much like a democracy to me, at least not one that I would want to be a part of anyway.

By endorsing Clinton and refusing to run as a Third-Party candidate Bernie has highlighted the current nature of our political system. We have especially learned this lesson in my home state of Maine, when an Independent and a Democrat split the vote leading to our own mini-Drumpf governor.

At the same time when this gross corrupt mentality is so visible in showing itself to the world we also see our greatest moments of love and solidarity. The Bernie campaign coming together was no short feat. They followed the rules even when they knew it was rigged against them. They didn’t play dirty even though it would have helped them along the way.

Now, Hillary is the Democrat we have all been following for years and even though she is unprincipled concerning most people’s rights she is more than principled in the art of politics. She is Frank and Claire Underwood rolled together into one unstoppable being. This, under the right circumstances, could be good for America. She is certainly more respectable than her current opposition.

However, in the end, whichever Mad Max character makes it to the end of this death race through the inferno, might not even mean much. It will be hard for either Drumpf or Clinton to get anything done without a solid backing in Congress. After eight years Obama has struggled to bring about his own brand of change. He had to fight a Republican congress bent on his complete and utter failure. And yes, starting out at the beginning of a recession didn’t exactly give him a head start, but he lost strides in places of moral high ground that hurt the trust many had in the Democratic Party. In particular his acknowledgement of killing American citizen Anwar al-Awlaki (Taylor, 2015). It seems insane how a man who ran under Hope and Change and became our first African American President could actually change in such a twisted way.

While I may be socially a liberal degenerate, I also find that at times our government regulation can be overreaching. Again it comes back to the question of a political revolution that neither of these candidates will bring about. Hopefully, a Republican defeat will mean GOP supporters can all go back to complaining (and not to the streets) and perhaps the new progressives sprouting up across the nation can hold Bernie’s fire to Clinton’s feet.

In this coming election 2016 take all that disgust you have for politics and use it for some good. Vote for your local representatives with some attentiveness. Forgive and move on from the incumbency dictatorship that has been cemented in Congress. In this Post-Tim Berners-Lee world, we need a new kind of democracy. A more robust and direct democracy that is in better touch with constituents. Perhaps a citizen push for ranked choice voting will usher in this new age, with new ideas, new parties, new coalitions, instead of the same old power games. Citizens United will also need to go. Like separation of church and state we need a separation of state and corporation. Only then will these new and hopefully more trustworthy parties deserve the respect they will receive as our representative organizations. We cannot sacrifice our environment and our dignity to blindfolded industrial gain any longer. We cannot allow these twisted godless freaks to destroy our politics or our planet for much longer. We just simply cannot afford it. So take the step forward and be with her. Not with racism, not with narrowmindedness, but with bold attention.

Bibliography

Byrnes, J. (2016) Ex-Sanders aide: Trump could win. Available at: http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/289961-ex-sanders-aide-trump-could-win (Accessed: 7 August 2016).

Pearce, A. and Parlapiano, A. (2016) Only 9% of America chose trump and Clinton as the nominees. Available at: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/08/01/us/elections/nine-percent-of-america-selected-trump-and-clinton.html?_r=0 (Accessed: 7 August 2016).

Taylor, A. (2015) The U.S. Keeps killing Americans in drone strikes, mostly by accident. Available at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2015/04/23/the-u-s-keeps-killing-americans-in-drone-strikes-mostly-by-accident/ (Accessed: 7 August 2016).

Citations, Quotes & Annotations

Byrnes, J. (2016) Ex-Sanders aide: Trump could win. Available at: http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/289961-ex-sanders-aide-trump-could-win (Accessed: 7 August 2016).

(Byrnes, 2016)

Pearce, A. and Parlapiano, A. (2016) Only 9% of America chose trump and Clinton as the nominees. Available at: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/08/01/us/elections/nine-percent-of-america-selected-trump-and-clinton.html?_r=0 (Accessed: 7 August 2016).

(Pearce and Parlapiano, 2016)

Taylor, A. (2015) The U.S. Keeps killing Americans in drone strikes, mostly by accident. Available at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2015/04/23/the-u-s-keeps-killing-americans-in-drone-strikes-mostly-by-accident/ (Accessed: 7 August 2016).

(Taylor, 2015)

Beware of Bernie’s Army

The revolution will not be televised; it will be streaming…live.

“You turn on the TV and watch politicians talk about unleashing the power of the free market, that’s absurd,” Shaw says. “The American public is being denied a free market, being denied competition.”

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Thomas Shaw’s story was finally heard last fall. His struggle with corporate America has shown us the character of what David Dayen referred to as the new predatory era in the country. The real division in the USA is not between race or religion, though some may spin it that way; it is strictly and unfortunately monetary. While some cry ‘class warfare’ we know the problem is more serious and wont be solved by brushing it under the rug with a catchy punch line for a misinformed public. Today there are entities, masquerading as people with a democratic voice (thanks to Citizens United), they are too big to jail or even outspend. Then there are people; real people, being stopped, frisked, and murdered across the country who have yet to see justice. Everybody knows things are bad. They don’t want you to think so.

This mysterious media ‘they’, the men and women behind the static, behind the oblong box in the corner of every room, they have one message; the revolution is not coming, it is time to be pragmatic, it is time to consume ceaselessly. Don’t worry about Burger King moving its HQ to Canada, they have hotdogs now. Don’t be a settler; buy, buy, buy.

It is the same message that is getting Hilary through the nomination against Bernie Sanders. The revolution has been talked down by the political wizards and prophetary pundits. They talk about the magical youth vote and how much impact it will or won’t have. When comparing twitter accounts Sanders had 89% real followers against Hilary Clinton’s 59%. Most Millennials don’t even have a television, so it makes sense that this generation would not stop to believe the nay-sayers. The only option opponents have then is to make Bernie’s message as unrealistic as possible.

For the true blue Democrats, Hilary offers a more viable path, one that adds to Obamas accomplishments and doesn’t rock the boat. But the boat desperately needs to be rocked. Through ridiculous loopholes we have seen our democracy crumble, from gerrymandering to Citizens United. We are no longer a country of equals. Sanders aims to change that. Even if he cannot gain the nomination, his running has brought together an amazing collection of likeminded people who may likely come to shape America in the future. He has inspired a wave of SuperPacless representatives to run for office across the country in an attempt to finally get money out of politics. Some have come to refer to these progressives running for seats in congress as Bernie’s Army, almost reminiscent of Dumbledore’s Army. Now, while I don’t exactly like to throw around the idea of organized armed violence, the movement itself is not a bad idea.

One of the biggest challenges that will face Sanders when he wins will be working with the House and Senate. These are two places where Bernie has a lot of experience. If you are someone who sees this man as unable to deal with a hostile Republican party, how much better do you think Hilary can do? Bernie continues to work for laws even while campaigning. He has continued to fight for his constituents while Hilary is seen as having fought mostly for her career. Robert Reich has pointed out that; “If both house of Congress remain in Republican hands, no Democrat will be able to get much legislation through Congress, and will have to rely instead on executive orders and regulations. But there’s a higher likelihood of kicking Republicans out if Bernie’s “political revolution” continues to surge around America, bringing with it millions of young people and other voters, and keeping them politically engaged.”

Sander’s has laid the ground work for a future where America works for the health and education of people first instead of corporate interests. A decentralized, more local, reactive, and participatory government is not only achievable it is necessary for a healthy democracy. In Maine the democratic caucus broke records this past March and Bernie won it easily 64% to 36%. We need to see more of this kind of involvement around the country. We need people to stop being afraid to talk about politics or our continued misrepresentation is inevitable.

I would point out that I am not trying to attack all corporations; like people some are worse than others. However, it is much easier and more dangerous for an MNC to do bad than it is for a single person. The discrepancy between what a person and what an MNC can get away with is an embarrassment to our country and to human rights. I am sure Clinton will be a fine first female president; and who won’t love our first First Man? But for many Millennials and others, change will be that much less unlikely under Clinton.

So fuck the revolution, this is an intervention, to restructure our corroded democratic institutions.

Bernie Sanders for ME

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At the bottom of a TIME’s article about Tulsi Gabbard, Democratic National Convention VP who quit her job to endorse Sanders, you will find a link to Hilary Clinton’s “decisive win” in SC and on Super Tuesday. The page also produces, perhaps randomly, a link to state your support for Hilary on another ‘I’m with her’ website or whatever. I find it odd that in an article describing the Democratic Party’s VP quitting to support Sanders, after having been thoroughly warned by the party, would have no link to a support Bernie page or a ‘hey Bernie is doing alright too’ page. I find it harder and harder not to believe there is a Bernie media blackout.

This Sunday Maine will hopefully show their independent thinking as a state and elect a man who is ready to flip America on its head. Sanders is picking up key endorsements left and right but many of them are not being connected or mentioned well enough. This recent move by Hawaiian representative Gabbard is an interesting one. Democratic party members are literally jumping ship. They don’t care what the odds are of winning in a corrupt system, they simply, and perhaps rightly, don’t want to be standing there after having won that way.

This is one of those precious few moments in modern American history where we have the chance, yet again, to make a bold change in direction and spirit. Since 1972 Democrats have been acting like Republicans, subjecting themselves to the philosophy of ‘All for the glorious Party’. And for some reason to many Americans this seems less like Soviet Style Communism and more like Democracy. It was when McGovern lost to Nixon in 72’ that we lost another one of those rare opportunities. Fred Dutton wrote in his book Changing Sources of Power: American Politics in the 1970s, that the decade would create a cornerstone and a major historical watershed in American Politics. The 70s provided an opportunity for people to come together or be frightened and scattered. We know Nixon and his cronies thwarted that dream and began a legal/illegal proxy war against the American left that continued on into the 21st Century.

For me, 2016 is another one of these cornerstone generation moments. One of the few human waves of possible consequence. A bi-polar party system and our last missed opportunity has brought us into a Citizens United world, but now we have the chance again to get out, to give everyone the health care and education they deserve and have been robbed of. If you have been raised to think that nothing is free and that free health care and education in a capitalism society is a fantasy, it is because we live in a world where Multinational Corporations (MNCs) are people and are given priority above citizens. Just ask Fryeburg, Maine. What is radical here is not our Vermont Senator asking for some basic human dignity in the world’s richest country, it is the fact that people are voting on the opposite side of the political spectrum for a proven moron and racist. After Super Tuesday’s Republican results it is no wonder the google search for ‘move to Canada’ hit a spike in traffic. As for Clinton, I whole hardheartedly respect her supporters’ opinions. We need the pragmatists and the realist thinkers of the left as well, but again this is not the time for idle hands. This is not the time to play it safe. Americans have been retreating into perceived safety for the past 30-40 years but it has only dragged the whole country further to the political right. Around the world we are a laughing stock, they expect us to vote in a Simpsons Schwarzenegger anytime now. Some say Bernie is too far left, when for me he is dead center, balanced, and fair.

When one considers this fact, that we live in a post-Citizens United world, it is not hard to argue that Bernie Sanders is actually winning this election. From states results to polls Sanders has been right there, neck and neck fighting with Hilary for votes. He has easily beaten other Democratic candidates and he has done all of this without a Super Pac. If we were to take away Hilary’s Super Pac from the start I think it is obvious who would be winning this race. He is not paying for votes he is earning them. He is doing something no candidate has been able to do for decades, run an actual grass-roots campaign for the presidency, one that realizes that in any country in the world health comes before wealth and not the other way around. Some will say that Drumpf and Sanders success is just an angry electorate upset on both sides with the status-quo. I would say good, get MAD, but make sure you know who to get mad at.

I will not say anything negative about Clinton, though I easily could and want to. Instead I will merely state that I have personally met people directly affected by her follies, not just in America but from several nations around the world. I will say that with any Republican or Clinton we will see more of what we have seen before, which is economic depression after depression. Some are already predicting the next crash will be sooner than previously thought. And I’m sitting here thinking ‘why haven’t we been able to avoid this disastrous cycle for the past 100 odd years’. We think that the USA is infallible and we trudge on ahead with the same policies and programs that got us into this mess.  I should mention that the free hand of the market is no deity of mine. There is no such thing as true communism or capitalism, only the impressions we make in between.

It will be interesting to see how a President Sanders will tackle his future challenges. How will his tenure in the House and Senate affect his relationship with those institutions? Will he be able to do anything with a brain-drain supported Congress? Either way we need to try. That is why I hope Maine will vote for Bernie, a proven environmental activist, an earnest representative, and exactly what this state and country needs. A healthy wake up call and a hopefully a change in political character.

 

The Bern Victims vs. The Super Dellies

DEM 2016 Debate

Bern Victims; supporters of Bernie Sanders who are accused of being unrealistic. It seems an unfair criticism, as if staunch Democrats had not said the same thing before about Obama. Sanders has kept things civil, yet Hilary is talking to his voting age supporters as if they are children and she is their mother goose.

The 2016 Presidential Race is well underway. A glance to the right and I am almost packing my bags to emigrate. A look to the left and it seems America may be able to find her center again.

The Democratic National Convention and their ilk are seeing yet another incursion from the far-left. Reminiscent of a Russian tragedy as the Napoleons and Hitlers just keep charging in, but they continue to prevail.  Of course, the Democrats already have their defense mechanisms ready for such a phenomena, like having their own voter base become too hopeful, revolutionary, or naïve. This is where we have to remember to re-learn ourselves about super delegates for the blue nomination. The Party is wary enough to fear itself, but not democratic enough to fear Fear itself.

To avoid another embarrassing defeat the DNC have learned to station their super delegates wisely. Just this month when Bernie Sanders won New Hampshire with 60% beating Hilary’s 39% we got a glimpse of where these super delegates are leaning. In the end candidates tied for delegates taken from the Granite state. Some see this as an unfair advantage, while others consider these delegates that operate outside the democratic influence to be a necessary tool for the cause. After only two states Clinton led Sanders by 350 delegates. Shaun King points out that; “since March 7th, 473 superdelegates have publicly proclaimed who they are voting for and 451 of them have chosen Clinton and just 22 of them have chosen Sanders. In other words, even though Sanders has won 42% of the states and 42% of the delegates from those states he’s only received 4.7% of the superdelegates.”

This has led to many Sanders supporters arguing for the super delegate rules to better reflect the popular vote. MoveOn.org has called for some super delegates to wait until the end to cast their votes or to match the popular vote in a closer race. However, loud their progressive cries are they have yet to tear down the party establishments walls. Bernie has not become David of this story yet, but he may soon find his sling shot and take on this Clinton Goliath.

For the DNC super delegates answer the question of how to balance between regular open participation and establishment influence. Somehow they are there to add political insight while at the same time never directly changing the outcome for a nomination. But how could having more delegates earlier in the race not push other voters to think they stand a better chance at winning the whole thing? The main goal here seems to be to avoid a grass-roots candidate that might not fare well on the other side of the voter spectrum. This is where activist passion and heart lose out to cold academic theoretical politics. There will be no revolutions if they can help it. If they can avoid this whole topic the better. But already online petitions have gathered thousands of signatures asking democratically for democratic change in the Democratic Party. After talking about the party so much I can’t help but recall Orwell’s last lines in 1984.

“As he looks up in admiration at a portrait of Big Brother, Winston feels he has at least ended his “stubborn, self-willed exile” from the love of Big Brother – a love Winston happily returns.”

This is what I imagine being a hard-line stalwart Democrat is like. My life for the Party, when the party does not exist to benefit my life, but simply to continue on its rampage of institutional existence. I would hope the Democratic Party is not that far gone.

The Bernie bashers like to claim that he has only naïve millennial support. Even though polls continue to show that he outpaces Clinton against possible Republican rivals. Now I agree that losing to Nixon certainly garnered some response by the establishment but that was almost 50 years ago. The internet and other new media have changed the game when it comes to the campaign trail, as seen with Obama in 2008. These people are massing an online Bernie Army. They are now pestering super delegates directly! They are campaigning for like-minded progressive candidates in the House and the Senate. And I like the sound of that, directly deterring democratic delegates. There should be less steps between me and my representatives in a democracy. Every layer of bureaucracy added muddles the intention of the constituency. And though we understand the intent of the Founding Fathers to be wary of the emboldened majority and have institutional tools to protect the minority there needs to be more transparency.  The internet may be able to help fix that. Democracy online is here whether we like it or not. Reformers see it as a step towards better democracy but the old guard sees this as a negative. The youths today are the biggest users of technology and new social media. Bernie has an advantage here when you acknowledge that voters under 30 prefer him to Clinton by a substantial majority. Ages 30-44 also go for Bernie and yes the geezers are for Clinton. I don’t blame them, they don’t know any better. All they know is the Cold War. Us against them and Red vs Blue. It is not a healthy mindset to have in the 21st century market capitalist world, not by a long shot, not with what we know today.

The craziest is the part where super delegates must actually think that Sanders doesn’t stand a chance against Trump. The man is literally the antithesis of Sanders, yet many are worried that some Clinton supporters might be so bitter as to vote for the man with the tan. The whole idea of elect-ability is important but we should not compare Trump to Nixon, or Sanders to McGovern. If you are so bent on Democratic historical analysis go back a little further and listen to the man who was shot after winning California.

“A revolution is coming – a revolution which will be peaceful if we are wise enough; compassionate if we care enough; successful if we are fortunate enough – but a revolution which is coming whether we will it or not. We can affect its character; we cannot alter its inevitability.” RFK.

This inevitable revolution is the one that the Democratic Party has been fighting since the 1968 loss, flickering out but still burning if you will. Money in politics has violently dragged our democracy kicking and screaming across the room to the right side of the political spectrum. If you look at the rest of the world, in most parliaments our American democrats would  be sitting in the conservative wing. We are one of the very few countries on earth that even has a party that would deny climate change. Again we are one of the few developed nations still without affordable health care and higher education. As Sanders points out we are no longer number one in the world and we need to work to get that respect back by seriously overhauling our institutions and how we conduct ourselves internationally.

If you still think super delegates are necessary remember that in 1968 Humphrey won the nomination (and then lost) in the absence of a great Democrat. To understand the modern Democratic Party one need look no further than the Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility.