Place the blame where it belongs

TIMOTHY HAVENER

Mill Hall

Progressive values didn’t lose this election, a corrupt neoliberal did.

People are going to get Donald Trump wrong the same way that they got Brexit wrong. Yes, there is a conservative element of racism to these movements, but there are also real socioeconomic factors that are impacting everyone, even members of the racially privileged underclass.

This is creating an environment where conservative shock politicians can exploit the ignorant and poor, while any substantive movements for progressive change have been stifled by the globalist neoliberal influences that have infected the Democratic Party.

Bernie had the polling to win this election in the general. By rigging the primary in the way that they did, the DNC left progressives defending a weak and corrupt candidate who represents the moneyed interests on Wall Street while most middle-class families are struggling paycheck to paycheck.

What’s even stranger is that the right has become somewhat less hawkish than the left in this election cycle. That’s not to say the anti-Muslim and anti-Hispanic rhetoric Trump spews isn’t concerning from a geopolitical perspective, but regrettably, the Democrats have taken on the role as the party of regime change and preemptive warfare.

The Democratic Party decided to go in this direction even as most people are growing increasingly tired of wars. We are all fed up with big bankers and big politicians getting away with flaunting the law while our jobs disappear. As our infrastructure crumbles and health care costs skyrocket, our government takes most of our tax money to fund a global military empire that disrupts the democratic stability of foreign nations to exploit resources and labor. This all leads back to Wall Street and publicly traded defense contractors who create massive profit from the weapons deals we arrange with state sponsors of terror like Qatar and Saudi Arabia, who have been funding and aiding ISIS.

There is a populist anger growing at the resistance to our demands as a people on issues like climate change and the socioeconomic inequality that is growing every day. The rich are getting much richer and so many of us are being left behind by a government sold out to corporate lobbyists.

Like it or not, Trump’s message struck a collective nerve running through our society that is pulsating with the socioeconomic pain of people who have been abandoned by our ambivalent leaders.

This is why Bernie would have won in a landslide. While Trump was only able to hit that nerve with vitriol and fear mongering, Bernie would have done it with hope and inspiration.

Mock polling showed this reality in the primary. Instead, progressives found themselves divided, arguing over the unethical and corrupt behavior of the very same pro-war neoliberal who used the resources of Wall Street to stack the DNC, rigged the media coverage to prop up Trump instead of letting Bernie be heard, and secretly mocked the energy of the young people inspired for real change as evidenced in the Wikileaks emails.

This is why many of us on the left are so upset and why we are pounding our fists yelling, “I told you so!” Too many of you misread what this election was about and let fear get the better of you. As a result, we all lost out on the political opportunity of a generation.

That really stings.

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