There is a spectre haunting the DNC – the spectre of Bernie Sanders.There was brouhaha over his kowtowing to the Democratic party. Some argue that by doing so, this was the last gasp of Sanders and his campaign. According to others, that’s not true. It’s unfortunate that some clearly didn’t get it, despite being placed in control of the dais. It takes a special kind of myopia to start chanting “unity” as a retort while at the convention of the party that prides itself on diversity.
Free advice: if your entryism fails, and you get called out for it, I think it’s less than helpful to shout back in condescension at a roaring crowd. That’s what history tell us anyway. But pay no heed to all that. That’s all media fodder. It’s the distraction required for prestidigitation to work. It’s not important.
What is important is the underlying issue of whether to support an ideology based on revision or one based on revolution (or “ideological” vs. “practical” if you’ve never learned what words like ideology actually mean). Neither end of the political spectrum has a monopoly on revision or revolution. And as far as the USA is concerned, if you’re expecting *armed* revolution, Tea Party or Bolshevik, you will be disappointed. With that option removed, what’s the difference? “Is there a great difference between a small revolution and a great reform?” Is the best outcome “at once a better government”? However you decide, the degree of rapidity required of your demands will encounter tradeoffs as all changes involve a degree of violence. This is unavoidable regardless of how sophisticated you think your theory of change is.
Paging Sanderistas: the fact that the type of change you’re advocating for, ie. revolution, isn’t what’s happening doesn’t mean that change isn’t happening. Your disappointment merely tells us what you stood for and that you can’t see your own underlying axiology for the trees. The Bern-ers who idolize one person forget that Sanders ran as a democrat, and not as a third party candidate. The point of running as Democrat, and not on a third party, would be to change the party. A changed party means it no longer aligns with where Clinton previously was, as evidenced by major concessions on the Democratic platform.
All that being said, if Clinton doesn’t earn the votes behind the new Democratic platform, then it’s not the voters who are to blame. If the Clintons don’t return to the White House in 2017, it will not be the fault of “Bernie bros” or millennials or those voting third party.
A Clinton loss will be the fault of a candidate who couldn’t convince a sufficiently large bloc of voters that she was going to fulfill her promises. She can lay out stentorian talking points in however many ways she chooses, but voters may still inconveniently remember that her record is inconsistent and unreliable. If she loses the election, it will be the fault of a candidate who is perennially in the spotlight for less than stellar reasons and whose accomplishments are notoriously thin. It will be the fault of a notoriously unlikable candidate running against another historically unliked candidate and still losing – full stop
The Republicans haven’t won an election since 1928 without a Bush or Nixon on the ballot, and they’re running without one now. For better or worse, this is a mark of change. They’re promoting new ideas, much to the chagrin of the current GOP apparatchik. So “change” isn’t the limiting factor. The limiting factor is that if what you’re selling isn’t being bought, stop thinking the snake oil you’re peddling is really change.