“Mr. Sanders’s success so far does not show that the country is ready for a political revolution. It merely proves that many progressives like being told everything they want to hear.”
So ends the stern editorial from the Washington Post this past Wednesday, chastising a candidate the media had actively ignored for months despite his surging popularity.
It wasn’t just them. Smears and hit pieces from journalists, think tanks, and even fellow legislators flowed freely over the last 72 hours. This week’s panicked blitz from the establishment heading into Iowa couldn’t look more intentionally coordinated if an actual script was leaked by the DNC.
Claire McCaskill continues red-baiting. Nancy Pelosi goes full Reagan by rejecting any possibility of new taxes. Politico, even as he comes within single digits nationally, still clings to the tired “symbolic campaign” narrative. Alleged progressives across Congress and the media have suddenly grown a strong opposition to the single-payer healthcare system they were happy to stand behind, as long as it didn’t start looking realistic.
The Politico article stated, “free college tuition and free, single-payer health care…are not the proposals of a candidate who is serious about getting things done as president.”
Is this really where we are as a country? The desires of the voters are unrealistic, and we should just roll over and give up?
My conservative friends have been telling me for years that liberals are spineless, but the speed and passion with which they’re urging a total surrender on the entire progressive agenda — when we look closer than ever to achieving it — tells me that it’s something much more insidious. This isn’t cowardice; it’s the system clinging to power. We’re supposed to want single-payer, we’re not supposed to get single-payer. As long as we keep wanting it and they keep promoting it and it keeps not happening, we’ll keep voting for them, and their cash flow remains steady. But we’ve broken the contract because we’ve elevated some honest guy who wants to ruin it all.
Giving up is over. We’ve come too far, learned too much, worked too hard to be told to sit down and follow orders. We will not accept this shameful excuse that our goals aren’t politically expedient. We’re the richest country in the world, and they’re going to tell us that healthcare and education are off the table? We do not accept that.
If Politico wants to write about a “symbolic campaign,” I would suggest they work a new angle: The rise of the Sanders campaign is a great metaphor for the end of the status quo, and every tool that was used to keep the system in place has become useless. We will win not just despite their dirty tricks, but because of them.
SIDE NOTE: I’m working on a project with Lorain County for Bernie Sanders to send mailers to thousands of residents in the crucial swing state of Ohio. Most of our funding will come out of our own pockets, but some of it will also come from this “Give ’em Hell, Bernie” bumper sticker which you can order for $6 with free shipping in the US. Please consider supporting our efforts! (And share this article!)