The same Senator Bernie Sanders who spoke of the need for “political revolution” has now endorsed the arch-centrist Joe Biden, ensuring the Convention is utterly irrelevant and moot. He made this endorsement irrespective of the very current and active charge that Biden sexually assaulted Tara Reade; notwithstanding Biden’s repeated misrepresentations of his own record endorsing war and whittling down social protections for poor people; and Joe’s promise to the very wealthy of this nation that “nothing will change.”
Hopefully people can now drop their attachment to Senator Bernie Sanders as The Good Father we have lacked in American mainstream politics, and see him as he actually is. The Senator is a colleague and a creature of the US Senate, a Democrat with independent pretensions and sentimental attachment to the (inaccurate) label of ‘socialist’.
The challenge to progressives now is twofold: first, not to give in to cynicism or the temptation to surrender and become passive; the second is to learn from this experience, to draw useful conclusions, and as a consequence, be able to more accurately navigate the political future. It never is a good thing to focus on the personality and lovability of a public figure; that invites the infantilizing of the public, which is a maneuver favored by politicians like Hillary Clinton. She’s well known for having a young girl stand up and say something sweet and cute, so everyone can beam and gush at how adorable she is…which becomes the substitute for serious policies Clinton might have to offer (which are very little). We need to do better than this.
The reforms Sanders has advocated will get short shrift in a Biden administration–assuming he defeats Trump, which is not at all certain. Biden is both temperamentally and politically beholden to the business-as-usual crowd, with all that means for our society and the world. He is as sincere in his stated determination to keep his wealthy backers stinking rich, as has Bernie been less than satisfactorily earnest in his commitment to independent, progressive values such as believing women, politically defending them from assault, and never giving the rich and powerful a free pass to indulge their sexist impulses. You are seeing the culture of DC unfold in front of you, and it is both toxic and reactionary. It is where progressive politics goes to die.
We are entering a desperate end game, in which the media are entirely focused on keeping us in hand, atomized and weak at all times, while putting the best possible face on the collapse of capitalism and the unwillingness of the very wealthy few to save us from mass misery. Start organizing and networking now to form associations of people you can trust and be trusted by, to act as affinity groups in the coming struggles for the basic necessities of life. The system in which we live has never existed for us, but always for a few–and this is now becoming apparent to all.