That squishy noise you just heard was the sound of 100 acquaintances creaming their pants…. …if they’re wearing pants these days.
Of course, dear reader, all nine of you who are reading past the title don’t expect that I will make that concession without preconditions. Of course there are preconditions, and the foremost precondition is this: Bernie Sanders is absolutely right that in the era of pandemic, and the inevitable Great Depression which follows it, we require the means for universal medical care, universal means for employment, universal housing, universal social security, and universal education. All those things which Franklin Roosevelt proposed for us three quarters of a century ago, we must now claim it as our fundamental right. Now is the time, and there is no going back. But Bernie Sanders is right about that because of circumstances which he and his millions of his lemmings did no small part to create themselves. Ideology is the solution to the problems it itself causes.
Autocrats like Vladimir Putin and Xi Xinping think democracy can’t work, so they subvert democracy in other countries, and thereby prove themselves right. Far-right conservatives like Mitch McConnell and Ted Cruz think liberalism can’t work, so they ostracize minorities and alternate lifestyles to back the disadvantaged into feeling compelled to make bad life choices, thereby proving themselves right. Libertarians like Paul Ryan and Rand Paul think liberal social programs can’t work, so they neuter the programs of every dollar they can to strip these programs of their effectiveness, and thereby prove themselves right.
Socialists like Bernie Sanders think capitalism can’t work, and so he subverts the election of moderate capitalists so that the worst type of capitalists may be elected. Donald Trump to many is the essence of capitalism personified, but a dynamic economy has no essence that can be captured so simply, and anything which purports to be the essence of forces so complex is a straw man, the type of straw man that is ideal for a socialist to prove himself right about capitalism.
Bernie Sanders is the solution to problems he has always longed to cause, and now he’s done it, and we have to adopt his agenda and be his staunch ally in enacting every bit of it.
We’ll do it, every part of it, to the dotted i and crossed t, we absolutely have to now. Blood has now been spilt to bring us to the point that the enactment of every part of the social democrat agenda is an urgent requirement. But we will never forgive any of you for ever allowing it to come even so close to a point so dire as this. This blood stains the hands of the Bernii as on any Trumpkin, and you can never wash it out. We will never, ever forgive you for it, the dead cry your names as well as Trump’s.
Conservatives in power can throw hissy fits, they can stand on ideals, they can limit their inclusion to the elect, they can base their entire party platforms on demagoguery. Moderates can look at demagoguery and willfully hold the illusion that there is no more virtue in virtue than there is in vice. Powerful liberals do not have these options.
Fortunately, I am not a powerful liberal. But were I, I, like Obama, like Pelosi, like Hillary, would be forced by circumstance to be the adult in the room, building coalitions bit by bit until our coalition can keep the forces of darkness at bay and let the country live on, muddle through, fight another day against forces that can crush millions. The true forces of light can only come out when the forces of darkness have already been unleashed, and in those moments when the forces of darkness stay on a leash, it is the liberal responsibility to make sure the world stays stable enough that darkness stays mired in the filth from whence it comes. But progressives and social democrats, they see the world irresponsibly, they see every injustice as something that must be redressed with the greatest possible haste, they do not accept that the world will always be unjust or that one must reconcile oneself to lesser evils. And thus, they charge into every problem heedless of whether or not there is a solution, and they increase problems exponentially which they claim they mean to solve.
There are certain cliches I hear all the time from ideologues. Aside from citing the Overton Window, the most ductile window in existence, the most common cliche is that liberal pragmatism and ideological flexibility, these are themselves ideologies and therefore the idea that the world can be interpreted without an ideological prism is a misnomer. Technically, I suppose that’s true, but just as the human body has a couple dozen benign tumors over the course of a lifetime, so too does the body politic have benign ideologies do not so radically change the condition of the body that it runs the danger of killing the body. Well, bodies are about to pile up by the tens of thousands, perhaps well over a hundred thousand.
There will be plenty of time to lambast conservatives in the grossest most vituperative of terms. They deserve every bit of it and far more than they’ve gotten. The blood on their hands is so unspeakably obvious, and they deserve decades of shame. They, not socialists, personify the evil that parasitically eats away at our American country like the virus that’s killing us. But people with the extremism gene are born to the more destructive circumstances only by luck, and had socialists, even social democrats, been born to different life circumstances, they too would have been Trumpkins, following him to every rally, laughing as Trump implies that the persecution of the majority of Americans is a necessity. If you read no books you can be a conservative, if you read one book you can be a socialist.
So now that we have to make common cause on the side of social democrats, I’m here to say that you will never ever be forgiven for it, and on every moment when we don’t have to present a united front against conservatives, it is the responsibility of people like me to make sure your victory brings you as little happiness as possible. May you feel as wretched in victory as you always have in defeat.
And knowing socialists, you will feel even more miserable in victory than you ever did when your ideals were still abstractions.