this is kind of a rant post
There is a story of a soccer match, a legendary one. One team, the green team, was talented, had great fundamentals, but were predicted to lose the match by overwhelming odds. The red team was always the favorite, they had experienced players, even had better uniforms and cleats and pads from sponsorships. However, as the game went on, it was obvious that the green team was better than they thought. As the final minutes approached, it was still a tie game. It looked like it was going to overtime, but then the whistle blows and the ref says “Goal! Red team wins!”. The green team is shocked, but the fans start clapping, the announcers say that it was a well earned win by the red team.
The green team are the “progressives”. Everyone else in this story is every one else in America. For non-soccer fans, it is legal for a ref to do whatever they want, they may get shot after the match for doing something like that depending what nation the match is being played in or how much money was riding on the game, but you can do it.
I cannot think of anything more analogous to American politics, especially now. The ref just signalling goal and the announcers playing along could symbolize how voters hear all the arguments, see the data, look at real life, and then just vote Biden or Trump. It makes for political nihilism when this happens. It does not even make the soccer game fun to watch if this is the ending, but in this story everyone is somehow happy with the result. Same with Americans, we are happy with mainstream media, corporate money in our politics, neoliberals and conservatives running the tickets time after time.
I don’t want to even call “progressives” that word anymore, we should just start rebranding as center and the neoliberals as right, conservatives and libertarians as far right, and I guess people who want to nationalize Google as far left.
The pandemic has proved me right here many times, predicting this exact scenario. We knew Trump was going to do crazy shit. Trump wanted to treat it as any political issue at first, that failed. Trump tried to be the individualistic anti-global relations by attempting to buy the vaccine. I did not think, who did, that Trump would entertain giving Americans money just because(literally Communist!). I did not think Trump would have to bail out corporations after blaming Obama for doing the same. When I say I did not think, it was less than 100% certainty.
The problem is, nothing is going to change. Biden and Trump are going to be the two candidates, and no fundamental reform to this nation will change. Bernie and the rest of us were aware of the problems underlying the nation, that this would get this bad. We were aware of how Trump would act during this, he would use his Fox News Soviet style spin machine to make it look like it was not bad and a democrat hoax.
This all just proves that Bernie (Warren too I guess, who knows right now) was right. That we were all right. It is rugged individualism for the poor and socialism for the rich. The poor are somehow expected to save up 6 months emergency funds while the corporations who were making profits like no other were not. When a poor person has an accident, there is no Kantian unconditional poverty relief, but for the rich and for large corporations there are.
We knew that there is no safety net for all of American’s during a pandemic because there is none for any Americans. If Americans are sick or cannot work, they suffer categorically. This is why universal healthcare would have benefited the economy long term. Just like how if 50% of America not working hurts the economy by let us say 30%, 10% of America hurts the economy by 18% (rough numbers here). But this is what the data shows, if you read my Bernie part two blog post.
If we want to have a good economy in the future, to be able to respond to disasters, we need to elect Bernie or someone like Bernie in the future. We cannot afford a neoliberal like Biden. We cannot afford whatever the fuck Trump is. If Biden gets elected, he will most likely do less than what Trump did. At best he will undo executive orders. If Trump gets re-elected, we know nothing is going to change if not get exponentially worse again.
When you deregulate and gut our public institutions, we lose the ability to have a stable in the long term and able to handle disasters. This is the ethos of the republican and Always-Trumpers. We deceived ourselves by looking at the stock numbers for the past 4 years, but that is all gone due to Trump’s own hubris. So essentially, we have made 0 progress in the past 4 years, if not gone backwards.
I don’t know why Americans are like this. Maybe the Lockean-libertarian-Ayn Rand character plus our circle jerking of consumerism and late stage capitalism plus our arrogance that this fragile miracle of a state is somehow on top plus pure naiveté. The naiveté that is when times are going ok, we forget what makes a state strong. We forget that it is good public institutions, we forget that it is good public leaders (in contrast to people who act as private individuals in a public office), we forget that it is our allies, we forget that it is our people who make up the base of our state politically and economically, we forget that it is working together for the common and individual good. If we are not to become like Rome or Egypt, we need to grow up, we need to get smarter, we need to have some sort of public mentality, not a bunch of private individuals vying for their own self-interest (which is only their percieved self-interest, objectively it is bad for them to act that way).
It sucks to say that we were right. Especially when nothing will change for another four years most likely. Every year of the status quo it gets exponentially harder to resist it, to change. We need to take to heart the “Not me, us” slogan.