There are plenty of versions MLK Jr’s Theodore Parker quote “The arc of history..” or “The arc of the moral universe… is long but it bends toward justice.” or “The moral arc of the universe… bends at the elbow of justice.” The “Bends at the elbow” version I hadn’t seen before last night when I looked it up. The arc on my elbow is about 170 degrees fully extended to let’s say 45 degrees at maximum flex. How that relates to the arc of the moral universe, or the arc of history… I’ll leave up to folks who are better read and with much longer arms than myself.
The cable news spin on last night’s debate was Clinton/Obama incremental change vs Trump/Sanders political revolution. If we accept that main stream framing, what does victory look like? Does it look like justice?
My take on last night’s debate was that Clinton & O’Malley looked like the polished and poised professionals that they are. Probably the best Pols money could buy. While Sanders appeared worn, angered and outraged. However it was Sanders who hit the nail right on the head when he asked the audience “Are you satisfied?”
If the majority of voters are anything like me, the answer is a resounding NO.
The conventional wisdom of the beltway villagers will no doubt say that Sanders finished third, looking like a blustering angry old man, not presidential. Those with a vested interest in the status quo will tell us that Clinton is the most electable from the Democratic Party. I think they are wrong. I’m not sure if I’m quoting ek hornbeck or Malcolm X but I do believe 2016 will be yet another Change Election and that “people will keep voting for change until they get it”.
If Clinton wins the Democratic Party nomination for 2016, it will be a VERY close general election. She will represent a third term for Obama. Voters will be asked – Are you better off than you were 4 years ago? With wages as stagnant as they have been, with all of the economic gains going to the top 1 percent, with the appearance of Washington being powerless to change anything, that’s not a question that benefits the Democrats.
If the Republicans nominate what looks to rational people, an unelectable dangerous kook with orange hair, expect a HUGE angry white turnout.
The fact is, Clinton’s policy positions are not inspiring to the Democratic Party base. They are correctly viewed as Republican Lite. “The Other Guys Are Worse” rational will work just as well for the Democrats in 2016 as it did in 2010 and 2014.
The best case scenario Clinton supporters can hope for is that she wins with 50 percent plus 1, and she then works with a Republican House and Senate (which won’t change if she’s the candidate) to pass more Center Right half measures. When income inequality hits another tipping point and the banks crash again, guess who’s fault it will be? Those “regulating job killing” Democrats.
The worst case scenario. She so represents the status quo, turn out is low on the left and President Trump is elected. President Trump is chaotic, the Republican Party becomes so ideologically inconsistent it shatters. He gets primaried out in 2020.
Since I’m on this long arc of writing about 2016, my next piece will be
Not Easy Bein’ Green (Bernie or Bust vs Lesser Evil)
I’ll make the case that Bernie, win big or lose big, is the Lesser Evil.
Why Wonder, I am green and it’ll do fine, it’s beautiful!
And I think it’s what I want to be.
Greensleeves by Roger Sprung on 1963-64 Folkways LP.