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Member since: Thu Mar 29, 2012, 07:13 AM
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A not-that-political friend's take on Bernie Sanders

Got this email from a friend the other day. He's not politically ignorant, but he's nowhere near as engrossed in politics as most of us here are, and though he generally leans left on issues, he's nowhere near the liberal that I am. Posting this here for your consideration and/or enjoyment; the only other bit of "context" I'll provide is to mention that he lives in the city of San Francisco.


I watched the debate twice last night; kinda weird picking winners with this stuff, but the first run through I thought Bernie was the solid winner; second time through I have to say Hillary did well-enough (if you are a Hillary supporter), probably an even score between those two. Bernie earned bonus points, of course, in that he got exposure to people who may not know him so much. I can't say I heard anything from him that was new to me, however I did have a realization last night; and remember this is coming from an outsider of sorts in that I have some conservative-ness in me, not a diehard Dem I guess I'm saying. Anyway, my new view regarding Bernie is, and I put this in caps purposefully:


Throughout the years, in the many, many cocktail, dinner, work-lunch, barbeque coffeehouse conversations I've had with people who consider themselves democrats/progressives/liberals/whatever - all I've heard to the point of exhaustion is EXACTLY what Bernie presents. On every point his view is exactly what progressive, democratic people-for-change claim they want in a politician. There are zero holes; he not only hits all the "we want!" points, he also dismisses and doesn't really care about the stuff that is not truly important. As an example, I'd put the legalization of marijuana in that category. Realistically "liberal" people like to talk about legalization, but to most, even democrats, I think it's a "nice to have". His response (with pause) of "I'd probably vote for that" really shows how that doesn't matter much in the grand scheme of things. His focus and core perspectives, the changes he suggests are right on point with what the modern democrat proudly postures as what is objectively and obviously correct. Bernie’s plan of action is clear, concrete and unwavering - "Let's fix the economy, break up the big banks and balance out tax distribution; stay out of wars until we really have to get involved; build back the middle-class; treat all people with respect and dignity; pull tax money away from the top to make education and healthcare available to all and stop wasting time, money and energy on political silliness like someone’s damn emails!"

These points are precisely the promises initiated and strongly upheld, at least in voice, for the last 40-plus years by the boomer generation, the originators of the modern Democratic party. Aging boomers and the modern progressives who have carried their baton forward have repeated this bundle of values over and over and over with loud, insistent, sometimes obnoxious voices and yet very little has been actualized or even felt close in reach. Every four years again there is the opportunity to make your vote count, power to the people. But the people continue to support, by passive allowance, the political machine to move forward manufacturing and outputting a long string of safe, digestible Democrats who are “For Change!, sorta” and we vote accordingly because we, the People, are perhaps “For Change! sorta” as well? We will find out in 2016.

It would be an egotistical slogan and probably not good campaign advice, but really here's the poster:

Bernie with arms spread wide, smiling. Caption reads: "Hey democrats, progressives, liberals, people-for-change - Here I AM!"

Just like any horrible, sinful person will be granted their place in heaven with a simple acceptance of Jesus as their savior on their deathbed, an action that clears all the sins of their past. The entire boomer generation can be forgiven of all their sins if each, on their now deathbeds, open their by-mail voter ballot at the hospital, take out a pen and with shaky hand mark a vote for Bernie Sanders. It would be the final political action to clear all the mistakes and broken promises they’ve made in the past. Fifty years ago they started the exact call for change expressed by Bernie Sanders, point-by-point, and yet that call is still required. For those younger, this is their chance to not repeat the mistakes of their liberal predecessors and choose a candidate for true change, change that will require effort and work, change that will require compromises, but change that will be lasting and in the end be the correct and right thing to do!

To me, this is a defining moment for our generation’s modern Democratic party. Moving forward in any political conversation, if someone starts giving me the whinny liberal rant, I will ask - did you support Bernie Sanders in 2016? If "no", then I say - "Well, you are living the consequences of your own mistake.” I hate to be boomer-righteous, but really - anyone who considers themselves liberal/progressive/whatever and does not support Bernie Sanders in 2016 is a coward! This is a once in a generation opportunity for people to shut-up and put-up. There is no third party splitting here, no interests forcing Bernie's hand, he is not running because of any social or demographic look-and-feel; he is not even a value-based politician like so many Democrats are. His is a call to action. Simply and sincerely, Bernie Sanders is "FOR CHANGE", for actual, concrete, and game-changing change at a time when change is not just a "nice to have", but necessary. Bernie Sanders’ message, echoing Kennedy era progressiveness, begins with "Here's what WE need to do". His language of inclusion was so natural and inviting. And his insistence that it all begins with "You guys out there need to do some of the work and rise up" is key. So - let's do this! And insist with our actions and our voices and our votes that Bernie Sanders be the 2016 Democratic Candidate and next President so that we can finally get this country moving forward!
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