In the Democratic coalition more than the Republican one, meritocracy and technocracy have long been unifying forces. Bill Clinton and Barack Obama represented somewhat different party factions, but they both embodied wonkery, a vision of competence and expertise governing to some extent above ideology, in which there are assumed to be “correct answers” to policy dilemmas that a disinterested observer could acknowledge and the right technocrat achieve.
Well, when one judges a solution “correct” on the basis of “how many Americans will this solution keep alive,” then yes, Clinton and Obama were “above ideology.” Sure. You fuckwit.
Like what do these people, who are PROFESSIONAL KNOWERS OF POLITICS, think politics IS? What do they think ideology is FOR? I hate more than almost anything else about our current sitch the idea that things can be discounted if they’re “ideological” or “partisan.” Like the whole reason for an ideology is to advocate for the stuff you want done, and you do in fact have ways to evaluate the correctness of that stuff.
I know Pope Douthat, Joseph Ratzinger’s number-one fan, is all about there actually being a right and a wrong, but that doesn’t mean ideology automatically gets in the way of that. Most of the time it helps.
But Sanders is different; he has policy plans, too, but he’s fundamentally a moralist arguing for a politics of righteous struggle, in a way that separates him from Warren as well as from Buttigieg or Bloomberg.
Um, I think part of Bernie’s whole THING is that he has policies he think will bring about his worldview. That he is good at articulating a coherent and moral vision for the future doesn’t mean he has no way to make it happen. What the shit is this. I’m hardly a Bernie fangirl, he’s like my 3rd or 4th choice, but Ross here is calling him a poet as an insult and that’s not all right.
And just as Donald Trump benefited in 2016 — and figures like Ted Cruz and Jeb Bush suffered — from a sense that the G.O.P.’s libertarian and neoconservative intelligentsia bore some responsibility for the double disasters of Iraq and the financial crisis, Sanders benefits from a widespread left-wing disappointment with what the Obama-era politics of expertise produced.
Let’s deal with this in order:
- Donald Trump benefited from a four-decade project to nurture racism and white resentment, along with a 24-hour propaganda network devoted to treating him like the second coming.
- THEY ACTUALLY WERE RESPONSIBLE FOR THAT SHIT, THERE WAS NO “SENSE” THAT THEY BORE “SOME” RESPONSIBILITY. THEY DID ALL THOSE THINGS ON PURPOSE, AND THE DUMB RACISTS CHEERED THEM, AND NOW THEY’RE CHEERING TRUMP. I’M SORRY I’M YELLING BUT YOU TELL ME, WITH THIS. JESUS SHIT.
Donald Trump did not win because people didn’t want a technocrat no more. He won because white people went insane as a result of having to listen to a black man try to give them most of what they wanted for eight really short years.
So if the exhaustion with technocracy makes a socialist a viable nominee, that exhaustion plus a solid economy explains why the socialist may yet fall to an even more archaic breed — a party politician.
Why is that bad? Why … are we just supposed to accept that as bad? Why is “partisan” not a set of solutions (that may or may not be, gasp, correct) but some kind of disqualification? Why are politicians only rewarded for not being part of the party they’re a part of? I do not GET this.
I mean, it’s Ross, so it’s always possible he’s just an idiot. There’s always that option out there.