BRANDON J. WEICHERT | THE WEICHERT REPORT
Bernie Sanders is the unstoppable candidate who will not be allowed to win the Democratic Party’s nomination. Despite clearly possessing the populist mantle for the Left, the socialists are being stymied not by the dreaded “Orange Man” in the White House. Instead, their long march to the nation’s capital is being stunted by other, less socialistic (and infinitely more corrupt) Democrats. Whatever may yet come of Bernie Sanders’ popular though unwanted campaign for president, the socialist movement is only just now getting started in this country. It will outlast and outlive “poor” old Bernie (who is, in fact, quite rich, as The New York Times recently reported). So, it is important to bear in mind that the socialists are correct in many cases when they identify real problems in this country (such as the wage gap). But their solution are entirely useless for curing the purported problems.
Demographics is Destiny
Writing of the coming “Youthquake” in Time Magazine, Charlotte Alter argued:
Research has shown that people’s experiences in early adulthood have the greatest impact on their lifelong political leanings, and millennials, for the most part, have experienced an America riven by inequality, endless wars, a financial collapse, a student debt crisis, and inertia in the face of climate change. All that has made them distinctly more liberal than their elders.
Of course, Allen’s use of the word “liberal” is far too generous for my generation. And, Alter’s reportage of the strange political dynamic arising in the country is a bit too passive for my taste. Take, for example, the fact that 49 percent of millennials would “favor” socialism if presented with that option at the ballot box. Or, look at the overwhelming turnout at Bernie Sanders events—most of whom are millennials (or younger). Donald Trump has proven that crowd sizes matter and Bernie Sanders is the only Democrat who can pack a room. Is it Bernie’s finger-waving, gesticulating mannerisms that bring the crowds?
No. It is the ideology.
Ideology Matters, But Only for Some
Although, it’s true that most people who say they support “socialism” don’t really know what it is. This was proven recently by the spate of northern European leaders who’ve begged Bernie Sanders and his supporters to stop using “socialist slurs” to describe their countries. Recently, John Stossel wrote a fantastic short post in which he interviewed a Swedish historian, Johan Norberg, who gave Stossel the basic, one-sentence definition of socialism:
Sweden [or any northern European state that American Leftists champion as a great example of where they want to take the United States] is not socialist because the government does not own the means of production[emphasis added].
Most of the people mumbling about “income inequality” who say they support Bernie Sanders do not really want a society entirely controlled by the government. What they want is fairer wages (if only to keep up with the high cost of living). They desire to have less debt (and remedies should be made for those with onerous student debt). Americans definitely need lower healthcare costs and families need more help taking care of the kids—especially if both the mother and the father are both required to work full-time jobs, just to make ends meet. None of this requires government control over the means of production. In fact, the systems that embrace such control often end, in the words of Johan Norberg, “as Venezuela or Cuba or North Korea” have ended: in a flattened society where one tyrant rules over all the people.
Interestingly, though, there is a cadre of people close to Bernie Sanders who seem to fully understand what they’re saying when they champion “socialism.” These are the people exposed as potential genocidal henchmen to the socialist cause in the recent spate of James O’Keefe videos (Bernie campaign staffers were caught on tape praising Soviet-era gulags and downplaying how many people were really killed and whether or not the “reeducation camps” were really all that bad).
Here’s the O’Keefe videos of the Bernie Bros:
These were the activist-organizers who formed the nucleus of the Sanders socialist-populist campaign and are propelling it to such explosive success that now even the Democratic Party elite are having to yet again rig their own primary so as to stop the success of the socialists. Such people also insisted that they had to “destroy private property” in order to save the country from the horrors of inequality…or something. It was all very important to them, though. The key thread here is that they are millennials. Bernie may be the gerontocratic face of the socialist movement, but he is by far no means the driver of it.
A handful of millennials who know full well what they are saying when they call for “socialism” are leading the rest of the idealistic-yet-idiot millennial masses (and the younger generations that will be able to vote) to their ruin—and the destruction of our country. They have youth, commitment to cause, and a rage driving them to ensure that the socialist movement dominates the American Left for decades to come. And, it will.
Let me give you a tiny anecdote into the mind of the Bernie supporter who fully understands what they mean when they insist that socialism is the true way for the United States. While I was an undergraduate at DePaul University studying political science nearly a decade ago, I took a graduate-level course on Chinese politics. One of the students in the class was an avowed socialist. We sparred often during discussion time. At one point, we were learning about the varying grotesqueries of Mao’s Great Leap Forward; about how Mao’s endless revolution devoured China and laid it low for another generation (after it had suffered for many generations before that). When I reminded the committed socialist in the class that, “socialism kills,” he did not riposte with the typical refrain that what Mao did was “not real socialism.” He was more straightforward. This socialists’ response was indeed more unnerving. He replied, “Look at China today. Mao had to break some eggs to make an omelette.” I recently discovered that this radical student I knew works for the Bernie Campaign. This is the mindset of the leaders of American socialism. Many believe them ignorant. That is an inappropriate assessment. The people driving Bernie’s campaign; the leaders of the American socialist movement, are not dumb. They know much. It is simply that they know much about many wrong things.
For his part, Bernie has been quite clear where his loyalties lie. During a speech in 1988, Bernie recounted that his political awakening started in the quad of his dorm room when he was watching the 1960 presidential debate between John F. Kennedy and Richard M. Nixon. According to Bernie, he was disgusted when he realized that both the Democratic Party’s candidate, JFK, and the Republican Party’s candidate, then-Vice-President Nixon, were essentially competing to see who could kill Fidel Castro and his “beautiful revolution” in Cuba the fastest. As Bernie recounts in the video, he realized at that moment that there was only one political party in the United States, not two. And, that single party did not represent The People. What’s more, Bernie was mortified that the supposedly Liberal candidate, JFK, was sounding more warlike against Cuba than even Richard Nixon sounded!
Here’s the video:
As with many things, Bernie was right in pointing out a severe flaw in our system: we do have a uniparty and it does not care an iota about you or me. Yet, as with everything else in Bernie’s bizarre box of socialist bromides, Bernie’s solution is an insane, ideological non sequitur.
What’s more, Bernie has made a habit of praising communism over the decades. In 1972, he even told audiences that he didn’t “mind people calling [him] a ‘communist.'” Yes, communism. Though, recently he’s taken to watering that moniker down. Bernie has vacillated between declaring himself a “socialist” and a “democratic-socialist.” But, it really doesn’t matter. That is mere background noise to confuse the ordinary people who just want a better life and don’t understand the depths of the socialists’ depravity. Bernie and his supporters would call themselves the “fairy godmother” if it meant lulling the unsuspecting masses into voting for their otherwise kooky programs (and they’ve even concocted a financial theory to support their socialist economic policies that amounts to magic pixie dust—Modern Monetary Theory, or “MMT.” Which, essentially, calls for the government to simply print and spend money at will on anything under the sun).
To further muddy the political waters, Bernie has incredulously labeled President Trump as a “socialist” but Trump’s form of socialism is a deviationist socialism that must be stopped because it creates and props up the entrenched elite (of which, Trump is a member). Bernie isn’t serious in any of this. He’s just spewing more confusion onto the already-confused masses, in the hopes that he dazzles them long enough to trick them into voting for him. Bernie does not have a plan; he has a list of grievances…and his followers, the ones who actually know what socialism is and don’t care about the consequences, goose-step to Bernie’s tune because it satisfies their bloodlust. Lenin behaved similarly, fyi.
The Roots of Rage
Bernie’s entire disposition is that of the deceiver. His campaign couches its rhetoric in familiar terms (like “fairness” or “equality”) but that is not the motivation behind many of his most ardent followers. No, for the nucleus of millennials driving his campaign to the hard Left, their motivation is exactly as Winston Churchill said of the British socialists in 1948: “Socialism is the philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy.” Churchill also accurately accused socialists of desiring to rob people of the “unequal sharing of blessings” that capitalism afford the people and replace it with “the equal sharing of misery” that socialism assures.
Listen to their rhetoric and look at their faces when they speak. These are not people looking to preserve and build upon a flawed but fundamentally decent system:
How could they?
These are mostly lost and broken souls who could never come close to building any system at all. They would use force and fear to live out their wildest fantasies of exerting control over those they believe to be their oppressors—yet, in most cases, their targets are the middle-class and blue-collar workers they purport to fight for. These are certainly not leaders looking to compassionately guide a nation to a better tomorrow. The socialists are interested only in tearing things down. They will start with their class enemies, but they will not end there. Rage is an unstoppable beast when stoked by envy and hate, which form the unholy trinity of the socialist movement. The socialists identify true problems in our society but then they use those real problems as a vehicle to catapult their vitriolic and massively destructive policies to the top. They will solve nothing and complicate everything for everyone. This is the key reason why many claim that socialism is a “mental disorder” first (though, I’ll leave the psychoanalyzing of political opponents to Bandy X. Lee of Yale University, who insists that President Trump is insane, despite never having spoken to him in a professional, much less, personal setting).
There is little doubt that the politics of the Democratic Party (and the whole country) are fundamentally changing. Gone are the days of the technocratic, boring neoliberal-neoconservative political debates. That paradigm died in 2016. The United States is now entering the age of populism. It will be up vs. down in our politics henceforth, with the Left-Right divide becoming secondary. But, it is vital that Americans everywhere understand the fundamental distinction between the Left-wing populists and the Right-wing populists who generally support President Donald J. Trump. For the former, their solutions are not based on wanting to help their fellow Americans or improve the system as we understand it. That is the sweet, siren song of socialism that Leftist revolutionaries the world over—from Lenin to Mao to Castro—have sold their people. Once in power, though, the revolution devours itself only after it has consumed its people and feasted upon the country that adopts the insanity of socialism.
Should Bernie Sanders not be made the nominee for the DNC in 2020 (which, at this point, is a distinct possibility) then the Democratic Party will lose its base of voters forever. Lacking key demographics, such as the youth, a new party that better represents the American Left will arise over the next decade. It will be America’s first ever “Labor Party” (similar to the one that exists in Britain). Yet, given the bourgeoise-bohemian millennial elements that form the nucleus of the Bernie Sanders campaign, it is unlikely that this American Labor Party would ever truly support the American working-class. No, as my dear friend, F.H. Buckley has written, it is the Republican Party under Donald Trump that has become the Workers’ Party. Over time, the Labor Party of socialists will combat the nationalist-populist controlled GOP for dominance in the American political system. If Bernie does manage to overcome the stifling corruption and elite opposition within his own party, then, he would prove to be a serious challenger to the other populist in the race, Donald J. Trump.
Trump vs. Bernie?
Yet, demographics just might be Donald Trump’s magic bullet. Trump has decades of celebrity status built-up with enough Americans that they might be willing to give him another go. Further, the impeachment scandal has helped rather than harm Trump. And, the blatant corruption at the heart of the Democratic Party’s presidential primary in Iowa has revealed a party entirely out-of-control (which is likely to turn off any moderates who might be inclined to vote for Bernie). Plus, the same demographic issues that Hillary Clinton faced in 2016 will challenge Bernie: he can win the coasts; he can win the metropoles; he can win the minorities and he might be able to retain some of the blue-collar workers, but most of those voters are not evenly distributed enough across the electoral map to impact the outcome of the election in his favor.
You have to win the electoral college vote, not the popular vote! Until the Democrats manage to change this reality (which they are endeavoring to do), the popular vote is a moot point.
Yes, Bernie will do a better job playing for the blue-collar voters that switched from the Democratic to the Republican Party to vote for Trump in 2016 (removing Hillary’s so-called “blue wall”). No, it is not a definite that these blue-collar-types would entirely abandon Trump and go with a man who is not proven at delivering a modicum of reform for the ailing blue-collar communities of this country. And, again, Trump’s celebrity is far more known than Bernie’s. Over time, though, the Right will be unable to count on the more moderate-to-conservative working-and-middle-class Baby Boomer-type voters to offset whatever gains the millennials and younger generation make in moving the country toward their socialist dystopia. The only thing that will keep the Right competitive against the inexplicably compelling fantasies that the socialists weave will be momentum and quantifiable success coupled with real pride in the work that has thus far been accomplished under the nationalist-populist rubric.
Therefore, during this most important campaign, Trump must be Trump while Bernie continues spreading the great socialist lie. Ultimately, Trump’s perceived success and the emotional appeal he brings with him will overcome the rage, envy, and jealousy of the socialist-populist movement. And, a second Trump term will solidify the gains made under Trump for at least another generation, setting socialism’s inevitability here in the United States back another generation.