“…Sitting on a sofa on a Sunday afternoon
Going to the candidates’ debate
Laugh about it, shout about it
When you’ve got to choose
Every way you look at this you lose…”
— Paul Simon, Mrs. Robinson
Among the paint by numbers or, wrote, mantras one hears from Bernie supporters is that Sanders doesn’t take money from billionaires or the wealthy elites that define the corporate establishment.
Bernie’s campaign is based on small donations – a buck or ten here and there and, to borrow a phrase, pretty soon you’re talking real money.
This, one is told earnestly by earnest people, means Sanders can’t be bought; champion of the Joe and Jane average who – it is true to say – are being screwed over by oligarchs and corporate weasels.
But in keeping with the deliberate and systemic hypocrisy of politics generally and the deliberate and systemic hypocrisy of the cult of Bernie, no one has bothered to mention that Sanders buys advertising on radio and television from the same morbidly obese corporate pirates who he says, he won’t take money from, because he’s not for sale.
The argument, such as it is, is essentially smoke and mirrors.
It is true Bernie does not take donations from corporations or people associated with corporations.
However the people who he won’t take money from either own the airwaves or are invested in corporations that own them.
So all that “pure” and non-corporate money, is being handed over to the corporations.
And no, we don’t think Bernie should be handing out hand-written flyers.
But the refusal of his supporters to recognize their (or Sanders’) hypocrisy, and the ways in which the system corrupts everyone, is no different from any other drink the Kool-Aid event.
The myth of Bernie is the left of center myth of Trump.
Trump supporters ignore complexity, reject facts, and will denounce any attempt to point out the facts, or to honor complexity.
Sanders’ supporters while insisting they embrace complexity and worship at the altar of facts, will not allow any criticism of their spirit animal guide.
Is Sanders better than the malignant troll?
Is he smarter and able to comprehend more complexity than Trump or a piece of lawn furniture?
But then there’s the rest.
Sanders is robbing Peter to pay Paul, Incorporated.
And his supporters are either too desperate or too foolish to admit it.
There’s no escaping the greasy embrace of the system.
Refusing to admit the contradictions and the nearly blind allegiance are no different than any other group-think effort and just as likely to end in misery.
So, to paraphrase a famous cynic: Welcome to politics. It stinks like a whore house at low tide.
Here’s the Gray Lady on Sanders’ 30 million dollar advertising blitz:
And here’s a look at how the 2016 sausage was made: