Is Sanders’ End Game to Sell Out His ‘Political Revolution’ or to Take It All the Way to November?
Clearly Hillary Clinton is none of those things. In international affairs Clinton is calling for yet more regime change, this time in Syria, in what could be a direct military confrontation with Russia. She is pushing for expanded NATO bases and missiles along Russia’s western border -- another huge risk of a third world war confrontation. Clinton also does not respect democratic rights, favoring things like aggressive prosecution of whistleblowers and those who assist them like Edward Snowden and Julian Assange, while also supporting the so-called Patriot Act, which Sanders has consistently opposed.
On trade, while the primary campaigning Hillary Clinton claimed she opposes the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) asian “trade” agreement, her cronies on the Democratic Party Platform Committee this past week deep-sixed efforts by Sanders’ appointees to include opposition to the TPP in the platform, and of course she played a key role as Secretary of State in negotiating that job-killing treaty when she was calling it the “gold standard” of trade agreements.
Clinton solicits huge campaign “contributions” (bribes) from corporations that are using accounting gimmicks and offshore “headquarters” to duck their corporate taxes, and so won’t do anything about that multi-trillion robbery of the treasury and opposes any serious attack on climate change, such as a tax on carbon emissions. As for cutting military spending and closing down the US weapons bazaar that drives it globally? Forget it. Clinton is a militarist. Period.
So after he has penned a powerful indictment of Clinton like this op-ed article, which condemns Clinton so relentlessly, how can anyone expect Sanders, in one month’s time when the convention is over, to turn around and endorse her candidacy as the Democratic presidential nominee? How can anyone expect him to “deliver” -- or as his left critics disparagingly put it “sheepdog” -- his millions of supporters over to Clinton?
I may be naive (or a victim of what Counterpunch editor Jeff St. Clair calls “magical thinking”), but it sure looks to me like Sanders, who is a consummate politician used to being on the outside of the two-party electoral game, is playing a cagey game. The question is, what kind of game is it? Either he is trying to appear hard-core, demanding a real progressive campaign by Clinton (which he knows she won’t deliver), in hopes that his backers will stick with him while he and his platform appointees fight for a stronger platform, after which he’ll try to say, “We got the best deal we could and now we all have to back Clinton against Trump” -- and that’s simply not going to work for some 50% of his supporters who will see through it immediately. Or perhaps he’s letting everyone know he’s still in the running, hoping against hope that the FBI or Justice Department will announce an indictment of Clinton or of people close to her before the July 25 Democratic Convention cements her as the nominee, in which case he will stand ready to be the nominee. Or then again, perhaps he is still kicking around the idea of giving his primary candidacy the best shot he can until the Convention, after which he will consider the option of running as a Green candidate in the general election, which prospective Green presidential nominee Dr. Jill Stein has offered to help him get if he wants it.