“Let's have Trump vs Bernie and fight the 2nd American revolution
for the soul of the country, and the future of the world.”
The above sentiment comes from a Facebook acquaintance of mine. One thing Trump and Sanders have in common is incredibly zealous supporters. The populace’s passion is rooted in a deep disgust and disdain for both Democrat and Republican establishments.
In other words, folks left and right have had enough.
But having enough isn’t a solution. Knowing there’s a problem is easy; knowing how to fix it—not so much. That people agree on the disease but not the cure was on full display in New Hampshire last week: A crony capitalist and an avowed socialist each won big.
The populist ambivalence reminds me of a quote from H.L. Mencken:
Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.
Thus far both politicians are long on promises and short on details; and understandably so. (As you’ve probably heard, “the details” is where the devil resides.)
Nevertheless, I think we can all be assured that a President Trump or Sanders would be equally committed to giving it to us good and hard.
But what exactly would they give us?
As best as I can tell, Trump intends to “make America great again.”
You may wonder: What does he mean by great and “great” for whom? Maybe a clue to your query is found in the word again. Perhaps Trump is desirous of recapturing something.
Having acquainted myself with Trump’s POSITIONS page, I believe he envisions revitalizing and expanding U.S. hegemony by way of economic and military expansion. To be sure, there is more to it than this, but a revived American Empire seems to be the centerpiece.
Not to be outdone, Sanders also proposes to revitalize and expand something: The Federal Government.
According to Hillary Superdelegate Clinton, Sanders’ vision for America would increase the size of our already bloated government by a whopping 40 percent. Let that sink in. (This may be a rare instance of Madam Secretary nearly telling the truth…let that sink in!) The fact is we’ve been slouching toward socialism for many, many decades. Sanders is simply promising a whole lot more of the same.
Even so, young folks just love quirky Uncle Bernie.
So here’s the situation. One promises to recover wealth and the other pledges to redistribute it. As a wise man once said, “It's deja vu all over again.”
Are Trump and Sanders revolting? Their disciples imagine they are. But they’re not. They’re recycling.