Imagining the two futures of the Democratic party

Step back from the day-to-day soap opera: Sanders will be the nom with the popular vote. Or, Bloomberg will be given the nom at the convention, and then the democratic party must be destroyed.

Christian Patterson
2020-02-21
Underground Mall

At the Democratic debate in Nevada, on February 19th, the debate ended with moderator Chuck Todd asking the candidates a simple question: should the person with the most delegates, but not a majority, win the nomination?

Everyone except Bernie Sanders said no. What this says is that A) they all know that Sanders is going to win the most delegates and B) none of them think he should win, despite that.

The implication is all of the candidates think the DNC should seize the nomination and give it to someone who didn’t win the vote, in the case that Sanders doesn’t capture the majority of delegates.

The problem is, all of those candidates either believe they may be the one to seize the nomination, and answered purely in self-interest. But if you zoom out from the day-to-day circus, we know that probably won’t happen: it now seems likely that Bloomberg will be gifted the nomination if it’s taken from Sanders.

This means there are two potential futures for the democratic party.

The first future is Bernie Sanders wins the nomination. There are two ways this happens. The first is Sanders wins a majority and has to be given the nomination. The other option is he wins a plurality of votes and is given the nomination, even though it goes to the second round vote.

The second option seems very unlikely, so we have to presume Sanders needs an outright majority to win.

The second future is that Sanders wins a plurality of the votes, and ends up getting the nomination taken away by superdelegates. It’s now seeming likely that Bloomberg is being positioned to take this spot.

If Bernie Sanders is the nominee, then all of those people who were counting on Clinton jobs in 2016, and are still waiting in the wings for those jobs in 2020, will likely not find a place in the upper-levels of the party.

It will help reorient the democratic party closer to an actual center-left party, rather than a center-right party. It will direct people who have a semblance of left-wing ideas, but are drawn to the center by the democrats, closer to left-wing movements. It will make the left have, hopefully more political power, but definitely more social power.

In terms of the actual policies that go through: I think the most for sure thing is US foreign policy will become less imperialist, but it will still retain the imperialist infrastructure that enables the US more broadly. I don’t know if things like Medicare 4 All will pass, but it only actually has a chance under Sanders, either way.

Now, let’s imagine the second future: Sanders wins the plurality of votes but the super pacs give it to Bloomberg. At this point, anyone who can zoom out of the oligarch soap opera minutiae recognizes that Sanders will at least win a plurality, and Bloomberg is clearly set up to be the brokered convention candidate.

In terms of the election, this would be an unmitigated disaster. Bloomberg would get thrashed. Trump would happily debate him and figuratively tear his throat out. Bloomberg will go on-stage with the charisma of human xanax, sucking the energy out of the room. Trump will cut him off with “Mini Mike standing on a box” and it will devolve into old dumbasses shouting, which is Trump’s domain.

Literally millions of people will vote for Sanders but won’t vote for another candidate. Literally millions more will vote for any candidate except Bloomberg. Bloomberg will probably win 8 states maximum, but I guess closer to 5 or 6.

The bigger issue is that it will irreparably damage the democratic party. And it’s not just because people will be pissed at the democratic party. The democrats will be functionally writing themselves out of history.

If both parties are running identical candidates, then the parties don’t stand for different things. If you would support Bloomberg, you would support Trump. The only ways they’re marginally different is in aesthetic and cultural positioning. Bloomberg is Amazon, Trump is WalMart. They signify different things, but are the same.

Both parties nominally stand for different social issues, but parties have always been characterized more by different economic positions. If both parties stand for the same economic issues, then they are two wings of the same party.

In this way, the US since the abolition of slavery has been a one-party state in the sense that both parties represent capitalism. In this sense, all (or maybe most) capitalist countries are one-party states. But with Bloomberg it would be different. Both parties would represent a very specific type of oligarchic, neoliberal nationalism.

Before the abolition of slavery, there was the Whig party. The reason the Whigs went away is they didn’t have a clear position on slavery and the Democrats were pro-slavery. There was a growing amount of anti-slavery Americans, and the tension between wage capitalism in the north and slavery in the south was intensifying.

Remember, even though chattel slavery functioned within capitalism, and used capitalist systems, people conceived slavery as a completely different economic system from capitalism. So imagine a society where one party supported slavery, one was ambivalent about slavery, and yet, the economic base of the country was the capitalist north, which was highly in conflict with slavery.

So if we have one party openly embracing the billionaire oligarchy, and one party ambivalently endorsing it, that leaves literally most of the country politically up for grabs. And they will go elsewhere.

If Bloomberg wins the nominee, he will lose. There will absolutely be riots. I say that as someone who is not planning riots, or no of any for sure, just as someone with a grasp of historical precedent. People will be protesting across the country.

I will do everything in my power to put the democratic party in the waste bin of history. And although I’m just a modest blogger with a short following, I know many people like me. People are building social infrastructure now to prepare for this.

And this isn’t just fantasyland stuff. The mainstream media is increasingly floating the idea of a brokered convention. They’re doing this to help massage the idea into the public’s conscious. If they brokered the convention now, they know people would be very angry. So they’re trying to prep the public for it, so they won’t be as angry. And it’s not going to work.

Democrats: test your might

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