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A Thought for Bernie Sanders: Maybe He Should Join the Democratic Party?


You ask “What happened.?” That is a very good question! Much of the answer is contained in the writings of people such as Chris Hedges, who does a much better job of it than I can. But, for what it’s worth, I’ll give you some of my thoughts.

Basically, part of what has happened is that we became self-centered consumers instead of citizens. How often do you even hear us described as citizens. A big part is also the ascendancy of the “Terrible Triplets of Militarism, Materialism, and Racism” that Martin Luther warned us about in 1967.

In other words, Fear, Hatred and Greed have been encouraged for some time now, largely as a way to control our thoughts and actions. I think you can see this right out in the open under this current administration. It’s been around for quite a while, but somewhat concealed.

Basically, the people (not all, not even most of them, but enough of them) have been subtly taught and encouraged to think and act differently than they used to. You can see it in a number of daily situations, unless you are young enough to think it’s normal.

Lack of civility, road rage, lack of empathy, the worship of wealth, the worship of the military, the callousness and cruelty towards the poor, the dysfunctional systems of criminal justice, the demeaning of public servants. I could go on and on.

I admire your post, and admire your question. You are aware that something’s very wrong, and that’s a good start!


Whoops! I meant Martin Luther King of course. My bad! Getting sleepy, I guess.


You made a lot of good points. There definitely is too much emphasis on being a consumer as a opposed to a responsible citizen of a democracy. Things are too commercial. Civics often gets lost. The racism obviously goes back to slavery. Despite all the efforts to get beyond racism it is probably as persistent as ever. What I have the hardest time understanding is the widespread acceptance of lies in the place of the truth. It is hard for me to relate to people who completely distrust scientists and highly regarded newspapers and magazines and other basic sources of information. The Democratic Party completely depends on connecting with people who trust these sources of information even if they obtain a degree of skepticism which they should. The Democratic Party is completely cut off from people who do not trust these sources of information. Conversely, Trump can only connect with these people. He cannot connect with people who do not trust at all such information sources as the NY Times or Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.


Better that the Democratic Party should join him.


The Dems? WTF?


That’s good Tor.


Well put. Yes, the democrat party needs to join Bernie, not the other way around. I suspect were he to formally join the party, he would also have to abide by their draconian rules, regulations. Donations from his huge progressive base would then end up in the hands of the corrupt DNC which is near bankrupt and would also be seen as a betrayal. Staying aligned with the evil democrat party keeps the enemy close. As the most popular politician in the US, they need to come to him, not the other way around.


The only way I would accept Bernie join the Dems if he leads them and they follow his every word. Anything less and the Dems can go and suck eggs.


IF he becomes a Democrat, then he should remain an Independent Senator until he runs in the 2018 election to retain his Senate seat but when he wins the Democratic Party in Vermont for the Senate (like he did twice previously) that would be the time to become a Democrat just by accepting the nomination.

You didn’t understand my point?


You’re a Hillary-bot troll with no credibility as far as I’m concerned.


I would suggest you look at this from the point of view of African Americans. Why did they vote overwhelmingly for Hillary Clinton? That is a key question that should be asked. I can’t say I know for sure but I would suspect it had something to do with a fear that Bernie Sanders would take the party in a different direction. I would interpret their strong support for Hillary Clinton as a statement that basically they like it the way things are in the Democratic Party. Perhaps they were worried that Bernie seemed to be aiming his message too much to the white working class voters. Whatever the reason is that they voted in such great numbers for Hillary Clinton it is important to think about the strong support she received from African Americans when considering which the way the Democrats should go. Should the Democrats really follow Bernie Sanders if he was rejected to such a great extent by African Americans?


What it suggests to most of us on CD is that something has gone terribly awry with the Democratic party. I haven’t had a chance to read anything by Thomas Frank yet, but I’ve heard him on Real News and the Jimmy Dore show and he gives a very clear history of how the party has changed starting with Clinton and it seems to me that this is more significant than any change in voter behavior in recent times.

You are kidding right about Washington and Jefferson and making some connection to the voters? Who the hell do you think had the right to vote in those days? It is pointless to go that far back and deduce anything about democracy since we didn’t even have it back then.


I’m sure you are aware of the age split where Sanders did fine with African American voters under 30 and not so well with over 50. The reasons for that are worth understanding but I wouldn’t presume that the older African Americans who didn’t vote for him ‘rejected’ him as opposed to him just not being their first choice which could be for many different reasons for different voters - he may have made a few missteps (stories on this bring up his comment that talk of reparations is divisive - something I agree with him on) - maybe older African Americans are more risk averse and they just didn’t think he could win. But had he won the nomination, I’m sure there were other African Americans besides Nina Turner and Killer Mike who would have come out to explain why he was worth voting for. This seems like strange logic to use now to say the Democrats shouldn’t want the most popular politician in the country right now to have some major input into how things are done. Tell me you don’t think Clinton (who’s as unpopular as ever and polls have said she’d still lose even today in an election against Trump) should be the one to influence the party. Who are you proposing?


There are a lot of negatives in your last sentence - is that what you intended? Does He cannot refer to Trump cannot?

By the way, a lot of us on the left are also pretty skeptical of the New York Times (and Washington Post, most TV news, etc.) They certainly weren’t holding up high standards during the lead up to the Iraq war (when I believe McClatchy was the the one major press venture to cover things correctly).


One of Gallagher’s main points is that Corbyn didn’t leave Labor when the Labor MPs didn’t support him and this relates to Sanders joining the Democratic party (and to pro-Sanders voters not leaving the party). I don’t deny there are similarities between Corbyn and Sanders and Sanders has said “The British elections should be a lesson for the Democratic Party,” but Gallagher’s agenda is larger. He seems to also be saying - hey just because we screw you over, don’t take your toys and go home - be tough and stick it out like Corbyn. I don’t know that much about UK politics but I know here in the US, it is quite tempting for many democrats to take the left flank for granted. What are the democrats offering? Can we get rid of super delegates? Can we have open primaries in every state? (Caucuses are just wrong - since too many working people don’t have time and shouldn’t be disenfranchised).

As an aside - I wish Sanders would listen to Corbyn on foreign policy - Sanders is an outright hawk compared to Corbyn who isn’t afraid to declare he wouldn’t use nuclear weapons period.


Yo listen up. The problem with third parties is they can’t win elections. No wins, no power, it’s all talk and daydreams.

You want to change this country, you gotta win some power. You gotta win some elections. Only way to do that is through the two-party system. This is just how our elections work. It’s winner-take-all, loser-take-nothing. No wins, nothing.

Sanders didn’t win the presidency, but he really came close. Next time, maybe our woman will win. If we really try.


Bernie should not allow the Democratic Party to influence him as he has. Now he is talking about “the public option”.

Hey, Bernie, we don’t need incrementalism, we need Medicare for all!


Mr. Gallagher concludes with “And one can’t help but wonder if Bernie Sanders couldn’t add a measure of clarity to the current situation.” For some reason the concept of Bernie’s “revolution” was never mentioned in the article. Per Bernie mythology, the “revolution” is for Bernie to tear down the Democratic Party and rebuild it in his image. I don’t see how “a measure of clarity” is really possible when chaos and anarchy within the party is his goal. Bernie is a narcissist in the same way that Trump is a narcissist and if Bernie could somehow manage to rename the Democratic Party after him he would. Every article I see that paints Bernie in a possible light is making nail soup like this one does, ignoring what Bernie is actually about and painting some kind of idealized picture of a guy that doesn’t exist.


pretty much exactly what I was going to say! (toes the party line, not tows)


The Democratic Party colluded with a number of media outlets to promote Donald Trump in last years election. Why the hell on Earth would anyone want to join with that? Not to mention that such a move would quite possibly cost Sanders his Senate seat next year.