Oh Lordy. Another social media exchange gone ugly this afternoon. You all are my witnesses — I am committing to the following rules/observations/notes to myself:
- You can’t convince anybody. Not on FB, nor Twitter, nor the Thanksgiving table. People can only convince themselves.
- Enough. New rule: Two tweets maximum to people I don’t know personally — like, in meatspace . That may even be too many. The potential for misunderstanding is just too high. Shut up already.
- It’s too soon. Many, if not most lefties who passionately supported Bernie do not want to hear your establishment bull#%^* rationalizations for Hillary or the Dems. Not. Having. It. Check back … well, I don’t know when.
- You’re the official douchebag – axiomatically. Here at BMG, after 11+ years, we’re used to the idea that people can disagree genially. That’s how we tried to set it up. It usually works here … Usually. This is just not how most of the world works, and I forget that. To most people, most of the time, disagreement is hostile. You’re an a-hole and the enemy, by definition.
Someday I will learn. I trust you will all keep me to these guidelines.
Now, with that prelude … I hope Bernie supporters (of which I nearly was one) will look at the positive ways they’ve influenced this race. Just a few examples:
- Hillary endorses a $15 minimum wage (mostly).
- Hillary now opposes TPP – which really is looking like a bad deal for climate, among other things.
- Hillary takes up the flag of Black Lives Matter — a position that entails some honest political risk. (Not sure this can be chalked up to Bernie’s influence, but certainly he was part of the conversation and flanked her on the left.)
- Hillary moved left on fracking. Not quite ruling it out, but closer.
Now, the typical response to these, er, evolutions, is “See? You just can’t trust her!” Which is partly fair. But politically not astute, I’d argue.
I’m not into heroes. We’re not gazing into someone’s soul. We’re trying to wield power to get stuff done so that we can all lead better lives. Either that stuff gets done, or it doesn’t.
And when a politician yields to your power, you have won a victory. Nice! Take a bow!
If you haven’t read it, do read Dan Savage on “taking motherf$@&ing yes for a motherf$&@ing answer” from Hillary on gay marriage:
Hillary Clinton’s support for marriage equality may be a political calculation. And you know what? We worked hard to change the math so that those political calculations would start adding up in our favor. So sincere change of heart or political calculation—either way—I will take it.
It goes on — as always, a good, bracing, NSFW read.
There are politicians who are implacably opposed to what you want. You can’t vote for them. There are politicians who are indeed out front on things you like. You work for them. And then there are politicians you can do business with, when you have built the movement and Zeirgeist and inevitability, and have proved there’s a political market. Hillary’s the latter, and she’s probably going to be the next President.
She could use a good Congress.