The Person Or The Principle?
Listening to disheartened Bernie Sanders supporters who say they will not support Hillary Clinton, one hears the unthinkable. “I was not for Bernie, I was for what his campaign championed”. Hmmm.
I wonder what principle Bernie represented? Was it “free” college education? Or, was it “free” healthcare? Or, was it just the idea of breaking up the big banks or raising the minimum wage? Some say Bernie was just the face and voice of “progressivism” and that there was many more ideas to come. Hmmm.
Thinking about this, one might wonder whether America is an island, separated from the rest of the world and free to undergo any political and social experience it chooses (and remain worldwide competitive)?
For sure there are some everyday conditions which Americans ought to regret if not be ashamed of. For example,
- Basic healthcare – not available to every American
- Income inequality – trending even larger and far greater than 40 years ago
- Uncontrolled drug prices – pricing at what the market will bear
- Unaffordable higher education – resulting in personal debts of over $100,000
- Minimum wage below a living wage – leaving little or no room for upward mobility
I am sure Bernie Sanders knew that while each of these situations were worthy of improvement, that all were not possible with the stroke of a pen.
In addition, it is important to know that a progressive like, left of center agenda does not include denying women the right to choose, respecting the rights of all individuals regardless of religion, gender, or sexual orientation. Even centrists do not support tax cuts, especially for the wealthy.
So why would it not make sense to ensure no steps backward and hold the potential to move in a more progressive direction?
George W Bush was elected (with Supreme Court help) with out winning the majority. What role did the principled, but spoiler oriented Ralph Nader play in Al Gore’s loss?
IMO, Hillary represents progressive leanings but well anchored in the center. One might say a Hillary victory will reinforce “Regaining The Center”.
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