Bernie or Bust: Blowback From New York

New York Times columnist Charles Blow is the latest establishment guardian to wag his finger at Bernie or Bust, referring to those of us who refuse to vote for Hillary Clinton as “bonkers.”

His argument is the usual assortment of cold cuts: privilege, petulance, the composition of the Supreme Court, that Clinton and Sanders have significant differences but far more in common, that we must all unite around Clinton to defend social issues and save the world from the dangers of Agent Orange, Donald J. Trump.

itchy and scratchy gop

Blow’s argument is bolstered by pointing to Trump and Ted Cruz – the Itchy and Scratchy of the GOP.  But here’s where it starts to ring hollow, he’d accuse Bust of privilege regardless of the nominee.  If we refuse to vote for Clinton then he believes we are privileged and don’t care about people of color, LGBT rights, or social progress.  The GOP nominee could be Trump or our next door neighbor, he would still accuse us of privilege.

So my question to Mr. Blow, “at what point do I have your permission to not vote for the democratic nominee?”  He knows the answer and so do you.  Never.

Privilege is a demand that we vote for the Democratic Party nominee for President.  Without exception.

Democrats first signed the Clinton contract back in 1992.   I hereby agree to vote against my economic self-interest; to ignore regime change war, to accept oligarchy control and purchase of the global economy and American politics; to support the ethical vacuum and walking ATM that is Hillary Clinton – in exchange for protection of social issues, identity politics, and the Supreme Court.  Blow and everyone in Vote Blue have signed it.  Bernie or Bust refuses to do so.  And Blue loses it.  Bbbbbut Trump!  Supreme Court!  Privilege!  Bonkers!

I’m white, I get that privilege exists and I benefit from it.  However, I do not accept that voting blue in every presidential election is mandatory and the only path.  Bust operates in Blue’s blind spot: time.

Sacrifice four years and look at the reward.  A progressive president in 2020.  Far more progressive appointments to the Supreme Court than Hillary’s pro-corporate moderates.  Timed at the point of highest turnover on the court from 2020 on.  Timed after the census and redistricting that turns Congress bluer.  A rejection of Clinton leading a transition to more voter funding of candidates and more progressive voices.  All leading to a far better future for people of color and the LGBT community than what they would get under Clinton and her VP from 2020 on.  Do I still sound privileged and entitled?  Bernie or Bust is about the bigger picture, in policy and over time.

At what point are we allowed to vote based on our priorities (economics, war, and climate change)?  Our principles (fairness, ethics and integrity)?  Blow and Blue would like you to believe that they are asking you to just make an exception this time.  “It’s Trump for God’s sake!”  Before that, it was name the republican.  It’s a never-ending parade of the lesser of two evils.  Every election is the most important in history.  Every vote has to be anchored to the now.  Meanwhile, the parade marches on as the income gap is the widest since the Great Depression – and growing exponentially.

Enough is enough.

It’s Hillary Clinton for God’s sake, queen of the oligarchs, master of the pseudo-truth from a certain point of view.  Bust will not vote for her.  Not now, nor ever.

What Susan Sarandon was getting at in her remarks about revolution was a different mindset, a different time horizon.  Bust is willing to exchange four years of Trump for eight years of a progressive.  Bust sees a need to prevent the Clinton future of oligarchy control with barges of money for the 1% and scraps for the rest of us.

Sarandon is hinting that sometimes things have to get worse before people see the light, before they get what needs to happen, a progressive path forward.  That doesn’t mean she is wishing mayhem on the world or advocating violence.  Sarandon is saying difficult times before a dawn of awakening.

With that on to the lightning round, featuring Vote Blue’s greatest hits:

You are taking your ball and going home because your candidate lost.
Bust is about distrust and rejection of Hillary Clinton, her lack of ethics, her pro-oligarchy policies and relationships.  Has nothing to do with Bernie, everything to do with Hillary.  If the nominee is Biden, Warren, Gore, O’Malley, Bust does not exist.

Conservative Supreme Court for the rest of your life!
Chill Sparky.  If it’s Trump he’s booted in four years.  More SCOTUS turnover after 2020.  We’d rather have a new progressive president appointing progressives, lots of them, from 2020-28.

But it’s Trump you can’t be serious.
If it’s Trump he lacks the support of both parties.  If it’s Cruz he’ll alienate democrats and plenty of republicans.  If it’s Clinton she has democrats voting with their president and republicans voting with her on pro-corporate legislation and war.

President Donald Trump, think about that for a minute.
It’s becoming less likely.  He needs 57% of the remaining delegates to clinch.  If not, Cruz is the GOP establishment’s tool to force a bait and switch brokered convention.   Then we get Hillary Clinton’s 3rd worst nightmare (behind an indictment and Sanders winning).  The GOP nominates anyone other than Itchy and Scratchy.  Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney, etc.  This rumor is making the rounds now.

Let go of your dream candidate, you’re making this a purity contest.   
A purity contest implies commonality, which exists on social issues and Citizens United.  For the rest, on the issues that Bust cares about most Clinton and Sanders are opposites – economic fairness and trade, oligarchy rule, Wall Street, war and peace, climate change execution.  On the principles that Bust cares about most they are polar opposites.  Fairness and integrity vs. the ethical descendant of Richard Nixon and Niccolo Machiavelli.