The corporate media’s take on Bernie Sanders since his entrance to the presidential race can be divided up into three chapters. First there was the ‘Fringe Candidate’ chapter early on where the media’s treatment of Sanders was patronizing amusement (how cute this wire-haired, Jewish, Socialist rabble-rouser from a small, insignificant New England state thinking he could be president).
Then came the much longer but equally annoying chapter that began as soon as Bernie started winning against Secretary Inevitable, the ‘News Blackout’ phase. Even members of the corporate media acknowledged their colleagues’ surreal ability to overlook the real news story of the election season—Bernie’s 27,000 plus crowds and the enthusiastic embrace of democratic socialist ideas in America. Yes, after 40 years of trickle-down economics and corporate-authored trade deals that have created a dangerous economic chasm in America, most Americans are ready for someone with enough courage to rein in Wall Street and the Corporatocracy. Instead, the media was obsessed with the sociopaths running for the presidency on the GOP side, and the orange-crested birdbrain who beat them. Whatever time was left over went to Clinton and the inexorable march to Her Moment, which left about five seconds for Sanders.
Now we’re in third chapter, the ‘Why Doesn’t He Drop Out?’ chapter. The media narrative is that Sanders is just a Ralph Nader spoiler intent on torpedoing the Democrats. First of all, Nader was no Sanders and did not attract rallies or donations on this scale. The reason Nader was able to take votes away is because candidate Gore kept playing to the right and promising eight more years of Clintonomics. Secretary Clinton is doing the same by promising eight more years of Obama policy. What she doesn’t get is that most of the electorate do NOT want a continuation of several key Obama policies, e.g., trade deals like TPP, fracking and the outsized influence of Wall Street.
So turn off the TV. Stop listening to the Mediacrats, all of whom are in the 1%. They’re a-okay with the status quo and maybe that’s why they just don’t get it. They’ve been scratching their heads all through this election cycle as to why the electorate is so angry. They have been living too long in the rarified air of corporate-owned journalism, surrounded mostly by celebrities from the worlds of politics, entertainment or media. They don’t have any clue how bad things are, that real unemployment is at 10%, that wages have been stagnant while the price of food and housing continue to rise, and how these conditions have allowed a Neo-Fascist like Trump to rise.
The Democratic Party leadership and the corporate media are completely out of touch with reality: in 2016, the Republican Party and the Democratic Party are both on their way out. Americans have said, ‘a pox on both your houses.’ The Do-Nothing Republicans of the last eight years have spent all their energies on obstructionism, willing to burn down the house to service the billionaire class. On the other side, Obama missed the chance in his first two years to create the transformative change on an FDR-scale he had promised. Instead, Obama tried to make nice with opponents who weren’t interested in making nice with him. Yes, he pushed forward healthcare reform but he should’ve pushed forward single-payer when he had the chance. Instead of compromising with Republicans on a half-hearted stimulus package, he should have pushed forward an FDR-style works program. He should have made the Wall Street thugs who caused the 2008 crash do the perp walk, handcuffed and chained at the feet, instead of bringing Wall Streeters like Rahm Emmanuel, Tim Geithner and Larry Summer into his administration.
What happened as a result of Obama’s tepidness? The paradigm shift that took place in 2014: the number of Americans who registered as Independents surpassed the number of people who are registered as Democrats or Republicans for the first time in American history. Most of the defectors to the ranks of Independents were Democrats. Forty-three percent of voting Americans are now Independents, 30% are Democrats and 26% are Republicans. Who’s winning the Independent vote? Sanders, by about 50 point margins. And even though Clinton likes to point out that she’s up by 3 million in the popular vote, she fails to mention that 3 million New Yorkers— registered Independents—were not allowed to vote in the New York primary. Not to mention all the uncounted Independents in states with closed primaries. Her popular vote ‘lead’ also obscures reality because it doesn’t include states with caucuses, such as Washington, where Sanders netted 73% of the vote.
Secretary It’s-My-Time is only inevitable among conservative Democrats. But among progressive Democrats and those who left the party—tired of Bill Clinton’s Republican-style economics and Barack Obama’s pushing through yet another bad trade deal—Sanders is the clear choice. The Superdelegates need to grow a spine and do the right thing, and that doesn’t mean doing what’s best for Hillary Clinton or even the Democratic Party. It’s about doing what’s best for the average American.