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Hillary dementia is alive and well in the People’s Republic of Bernistan



I know quite a few Bernie Sanders fans, and I feel sorry for them. They’re having difficulty accepting the role they played in getting Trump elected and so are becoming increasingly irrational and even reactionary in their politics.

What Bernistas have in common are the following behaviors and attitudes:

  1. They were strong Bernie supporters in the primaries.
  2. They hated Hillary Clinton. Maybe “hate” isn’t a strong enough word. We’re talking foam-at-the-mouth loathing, the kind where the mere mention of her name sends them into childish tantrums.
  3. When Trump was elected, Bernie people went into deep denial, insisting that the defection of Bernie supporters like themselves (who either didn’t vote, or voted for a third party candidate) had no impact on the results of the election, even though the rest of us know that it did.
  4. To this day, and with all we know of the catastrophe that is the Trump administration, they continue to loathe Hillary Clinton and deny any responsibility for what happened.

I was for Hillary during the primaries, but, as I constantly pointed out to my Bernie friends, if Bernie had won the nomination, I would have happily supported him. But if Hillary won the nomination, Bernie supporters insisted, they would never support her; they frequently resorted to personal invective (the c-word, b-word, murderer, liar, Wall Street tool, etc.) to underscore their hatred of Hillary.

But why? I always asked. Would you rather see Trump get elected? Yes, they replied. Anybody but Hillary.

None of my Bernie friends was a crazy tea party right winger. As residents of the People’s Republic of Bernistan, they described themselves as leftists, or liberals. They wanted single-payer healthcare, higher taxes on the rich, more environmental protection, breaking up the big banks—the whole gamut of liberal policies. Of course, I wanted those same things, and I tried to convince my friends that Hillary did, too, or could be pushed in those directions. But in their blind fury, they wouldn’t buy it.

Now here we are, in late May, and the weird thing is that my Bernie friends remain stuck in the same psychological space. They still hate Hillary (and they still have difficulty explaining why, beyond parroting Fox News propaganda), and they still insist that they had no responsibility for electing Trump. Well, let me explain why they did.

When it comes to politics, I don’t care what people say, I care about what they do; as the old saying goes, actions have consequences. Bernie supporters can insist that they’re liberals, and that the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton weren’t liberal enough for them. But the end result of what they did—the real-world, actual development—was to elect Trump. Who else elected Trump? The tea party, obviously. So we have two groups—Bernie supporters and the tea party—whose actions both resulted in the same result, a Trump presidency. If a=c and b=c, then a=b. Therefore, when I describe Bernie supporters as being crypto-tea party, I mean that, by their actions, Bernie supporters enabled the tea party’s aims, and helped achieve them. In 12-step theory, Bernie supporters have yet to undergo the searching self-examination that forces them to admit to themselves that they’ve done something terribly wrong. Such an admission can be uncomfortable, even embarrassing, but until they get there, Bernie people will remain caught in cognitive dissonance.

The truth is, the residents of the People’s Republic of Bernistan allowed the perfect to be the enemy of the good. Hillary Clinton may not have given them everything they wanted (although I would argue she gave them much more than they admitted). It was fine for Democrats to have a spirited debate during the primaries, and it was fine for people to support Bernie.  But after the primary season was over, Hillary was the nominee of the Democratic Party, Trump was the Republican nominee, and it was obvious that neither Jill Stein nor Gary Johnson nor Evan McMullin could possibly win. All that the third party candidates could do was to be spoilers—siphoning votes from the two major candidates. And I believe (and I think the evidence supports me) that the third party candidates stole a lot more votes from Hillary than they did from Trump. This is why it’s appropriate to call many Bernie supporters “Trump trolls,” “troll” meaning a person who claims to be one thing but is in fact (and perhaps inadvertently) the opposite.

I’ve pissed off a lot of Bernie supporters by telling them that they were useful idiots for the tea party. They hate hearing that: they go ballistic, and take it as a personal insult to their integrity. But it’s true. You have to stand up and accept the consequences of your actions: that’s the meaning of being a grownup. Sadly, to this day, too many Bernie supporters refuse to do that. They still hate on Hillary, more furiously than ever, they still are in deep denial over what they did in the election, and, more troublingly, they’re now set to do the same dumbass thing heading into the 2018 elections and beyond.

  1. This is some seriously idiotic writing. Thankfully, hardly anyone will see this DNC garbage.

  2. Well, bernie, you saw it, and so will thousands of others!

  3. Blake Gray says:

    Hey Steve, I’m sure you’re going to delete this like my previous comment because, like a Trump voter, you can’t accept facts, but click on the link before you do. I’ll be interested to see if you want to write the screed that seems to follow from it.

  4. Do me a favor, bud, check out some of the “NEVER BERNIE!” lunatics on Twitter and then write an article about them. People who are so deranged from their candidate losing (be mad at the electoral college or Hillary’s failure to really engage in Michigan before you foam at the mouth over Bernie, please, DNCers) that they’re about to lose the midterms because they’re so focused on punching left.

  5. To Chale. Twitter is a cesspool of hatred, hyperpartisanship and fear mongering. It’s President Orange’s special territory after all.

    If the Twitterverse represented public opinion, we’d all be in flames by now. Literally.

    My point is that a few rogue loons on social media, who were proponents of Bernie’s campaign, do NOT represent the bulk of Sanders primary voters.

    An overwhelming plurality of Sanders primary voters turned out to vote for the Democratic candidate Mrs Clinton in the General Election. They don’t have blood on their hands. We’re all in this mess together, so it’s high time we start acting like it.

  6. Dear Coolio, thank you for your comment. I disagree. IMHO too many “liberals” or “leftists” or “libertarians” were persuaded to hate on Hillary by 25 years of unrelenting attacks from the rightwing lie machine. It influenced enough of them to stay home, or vote for third party candidates. The result is this disaster of trump.

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