Bernie Sanders: The End of a Campaign

Published on Dissident Voice, by Binoy Kampmark, July 13, 2016.

The slimmest of hopes, which got extremely threadbare in the last month, was nursed that Bernie Sanders might have taken his support base and made it into a third movement. A US political scene so typified by the banking retainers, the counterfeit pioneers and fraudulent managers, could have done with a new force.  

Sanders, having watered and cultivated a genuine counter to a Democratic stream so deeply compromised, ultimately succumbed to the Clintonite machine. His July 12 message reads in part tones of regret, condescension and capitulation. There is also that sense of self-deception. Let me begin by thanking the 13 million Americans who voted for me during the Democratic primaries … //

… A mealy-mouthed way of justifying capitulation in political contest is to suggest that the broader cause, rather than the individual, matters. The Great Figure of History argument becomes a matter of individual forces on the ground, with great ideas supposedly assuming a force of their own. (Ideas never move, run or jog without inhabiting some body and mind, a point sometimes missed in these debates.)

Thus, Sanders can claim that during the course of campaigning, he “learned from all of that is that this campaign is not really about Hillary Clinton, or Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders, or any other candidate who sought the presidency.” After this rather telling observation of denial, his forgiving escape hatch was that the electoral campaign “is about the needs of the American people and addressing the very serious crises that we face.”

This gesture of abandonment is profound. The Sandernistas and those loosely associated with him as a genuine source of change had come up with a figure who disassociated himself from politics as personality. The reality is that millions were readying themselves to vote for him come November precisely because he was Sanders, meshed with the ideas of basic social democracy.

Rather than admitting, in a time characterised by anti-establishment politics, that Clinton had to move over or be damned electorally, Sanders gravitated to the siren call of the establishment. As he put it rather unconvincingly, the battle with Clinton involved disagreement about a “number of issues,” because that is “what democracy is about.” It would have been an even greater exercise in democracy to run as a third presidential candidate … //

… The Sanders chapter in US political history gives us an enduring reminder about candidates and their campaigns. Be wary of any language of change that is merely the language of promise. Keep in mind that US politics remains a “binary” choice, an effective non-choice bankrolled by financial power. The best way Sanders could have thanked his individual supporters and voters would have been representing them to the end. He preferred to haul them over the coals of political surrender.

(full text).

(Dr Binoy Kampmark was a Commonwealth Scholar at Selwyn College, Cambridge. He lectures at RMIT University, Melbourne and can be reached here. Read other articles by Binoy).

(my comment – just a small thougth came up in my head this morning:

  • What, if Donald Trump was created by the 0.001% ONLY to buy up the regular some % of troublemakers wanting their eternal changes for a better life, like Obama who buyed up all of them in 2008. Bernie’s surrender should force us to submit to a whitewashed form (Clinton) of capitalistic slavery, thus having four more years to prepare doomsday for the 99%. Is Bernie Sanders really stupid enough to believe that now he is saving anywhat for poors. Or is he blackmailed, warned to death.
  • Yes, let us be warned: only a 100 % revolution works. Like pregnancy, it’s yes or no, never half.
  • More, seen Washington’s ugly oligarchy, Clinton is worse than Trump, she is part of it.
  • To solve the rich-poor problem, two ways are possible:
    - 1): you take half of the money of the rich and you distribute it to poors (Bernie Sanders or Franklin D. Roosevelt) … here the system can go on as ever;
    - 2): you make crash the whole, if you are able. We consent to change the dept money into sovereign money/Vollgeld (explanation has still to be created in english wikipedia or in any other language). The rich would loss much more than only the half, and a new debt construction could no more be build up … here the system is changing correctly.
  • As I know this humanity, not only Bernie Sanders, but the majority of our lounge-revolutionaries wanting changes will finally opt for solution 1), as too much scared, weak, brainless, uncertain, spoiled, dependent on an authority, finally estranged … too much childish for a conscious change directed by sane people but rejected by this depraved humanity … unless there will be more harm to us all and at least some more of us no more want live our mentality of corruption … too much trained to wash away symptoms rather than find out reality … and the 0.00001% know this very well and play with us – Heidi).


The world’s 10 biggest sovereign wealth funds, on Gulf Business, by Natasha Malik, July 13, 2016: a drop in oil prices this year suggests that hydrocarbon-funded SWFs are under pressure a basic income could be the best way to tackle inequality – Robert Skidelsky, on BIEN, by Kate McFarland, July 13, 2016: Lord Robert Skidelsky, professor emeritus of political economy at the University of Warwick, has written a new column on universal basic income (UBI);

Brexit to have limited credit impact on GCC sovereign wealth funds, on AMEinfo, July 12, 2016;

Sovereign wealth funds’ India holdings at a record high, on live mint, July 12, 2016;

Govt Mulling A New Pension Scheme For High-Income Earners, on Huffington Post, by Rimin Dutt, July 11, 2016;

INDIA: Economist declares the UBI debate not over, on BIEN, by Michael Lytton, July 11, 2016;

Response: The Economist’s “Basically Flawed” Anti-UBI Argument, on BIEN, by Kate McFarland, July 11, 2016: an article in the June 4th edition of The Economist, entitled “Basically Flawed,” argues that universal basic income is a radical policy that is just too risky to pursue. The anti-UBI argument itself is flawed, however, largely due to understating the benefit of UBI — if not ignoring its necessity;

UK’s Largest Trade Union Endorses Basic Income, on BIEN, by Kate McFarland, July 11, 2016;

Hot-Money Curbs Help Rupee Bonds Evade Brexit-Induced Volatility, on Bloomberg, by Kartik Goyal, July 10, 2016;

More Than 200 People Arrested At Protests In Louisiana And Minnesota, on, by Merrit Kennedy, July 10, 2016;

The Economist’s Concubine, on Robert Skidelsky, Project Syndicate, by Robert Skidelsky, March 17, 2016;

… and this:

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