There is no question that the Democratic party has done a god-awful job of explaining to white working people who’s screwing them and why. Most of the people who have tried that have found themselves marginalized, and not always by Republicans, either. Senator Professor Warren is one of the few of them who has managed to explain these matters in such a way that they are both easily understood, and in such a way that she doesn’t sound like she’s talking down to anyone. And she still has a long push up a dirt road before she moves the political dialogue to the point where white working class voters actually act on what she’s saying to them. Sooner or later, it’s up to the voters to decide to stop being stupid about their own self-interest, and to stop falling for scams about how the Poors and Browns are the ones stealing all their money.
Ah, the idea that people get the government they deserve. I get it, I do. In 2004 I was all “fuck everything, let these fucking people rot.” But nobody deserves this, even the people who say at the ballot box every four years that yes, yes we do.
The reason the scams about the Poors and the Browns work is that absolutely no one is offering any other answers. I hear this maddening thing all the time about people voting against their own self-interests and what everybody saying it has to figure out is that people aren’t voting against their own self-interests. They’re voting for the person who is going to make them feel better about losing, since nobody will help them WIN.
Who else is offering a competing, compelling message? Who else is making sure their lights stay on? Who else is standing up for their right to live in a decent society where we all take care of each other, take responsibility for each other, lift each other up? Who else is backing up magnificent words with actions? Who else is paying for presses and TV stations to make sure those words don’t end up twisted and broken?
It’s not the party agreeing that single payer would have been socialism, so let’s have this other thing. It’s not the party whose president promised to walk with picketers and absented himself from the Midwest when those picketers showed up. It’s not the party of every other bullshit triangulating thing, afraid to stand up to the war until the war was almost over, just fine with torture once its president oversaw the torturing, constantly running from its own principles and afraid of the cable news blowhards calling them mean for smiling at anybody on The Professional Left.
I get the temptation, but blaming people for their own subjugation helps them throw off that subjugation not one fucking bit. Nobody deserves to have this done to them, and nobody signed up for the economy they’re getting except that asshole in The Wolf of Wall Street and his bros. The responsibility for the theft of this country rests with the crooks, not their victims. However much we might want to say seriously, lock up your shit next time.