” For what it’s worth,” as Stephen Stills said in his song, “There’s something happening here. What it is ain’t exactly clear.”
After attending a Bernie Sanders rally I know what it is, a political revolution is what it is going on. Thousands of neatly dressed young and old sat in Los Angeles and responded in rapturous applause as Senator Bernie Sanders went through a laundry list of grievances that we the Middle Class have. He did not just complain about our problems he had solutions for each of our grievances.
Los Angeles is not alone, in city after city thousands of every day citizens are ready to be part of a revolution to take back our country from the Oligarchs, the billionaires.
The phenomenon going on is not unknown in our history. It has happened before. The 1820’s were a time of turmoil. The birth of their revolution against the rich and powerful occurred when there was a Depression. A lot of suffering and pain took place, with a profound degree of frustration as most Americans felt extremely frustrated with a unresponsive government in Washington. The masses felt betrayed in that the promise of equality that Jefferson had promised had been lost to the benefits given to the wealthy class. Things began to change when Eastern states granted the right to vote to all white males, not just the white males who owned a certain amount of property. The new western states were hotbeds of political dissent demanding equal rights for all white males. Their trust was bestowed upon a general, Andrew Jackson, who became the champion of the great unwashed masses.
“Battle lines are being drawn. Nobody’s right if everybody is wrong.”
Senator Sanders calls income inequality the issue of our day, our time. For over 40 years the wages of the Middle Class have been stagnant while the top 1 to 2 % control more and more of the wealth in our country. They have become amazingly wealthy. Such a great disparity of income and wealth can not be allowed to continue if we are to maintain a civil society. If change does not occur and a return to a time when Americans felt that they had a chance for upward mobility there really will be battle lines being drawn.
Despite the fact that a lot of our representatives in Washington are controlled by the billionaires and their lobbyists, Bernie Sanders is not one of them. His authenticity is striking a cord in the very early stage of the longest Presidential campaign on record. He is speaking the truth to the problems that average Americans face, and the crowds that he is drawing in Portland, Seattle and Los Angeles reflect how his message is resonating.
The media when portraying his appeal try to connect Sander’s support to the disenchantment and anger of the supporters of Donald Trump; nothing could be further from the truth except for the fact that both groups of voters believe the country is going in the wrong direction. The supporters of Senator Sanders seek more change that will allow the citizens of the United States to regain control of their own government from the wealthy class and to reform the political system.
If only a few of Bernie’s ideas would gain Congressional support the feelings of unfairness that a lot of Americans harbor now would be satisfied and softened. A livable wage of $15 dollars an hour would go a long ways towards relieving a lot of tensions in our daily lives from just surviving day to day. No American should be working 40 plus hours a week and still living in poverty.
Senator Sanders also has a common sense solution or two to make the elective process fair. If you had publicly financed elections the corrupting influence of our new aristocracy, the top 1-3%, would greatly diminish. What also needs to be done is to nominate a few new Supreme Court judges who would overturn Citizens United, that change would go a long ways to returning the government back to the people.
Those who support Donald Trump do not resemble a political revolution but rather they are angry and hateful of the changes that are taking place in our country. It is too late to go back in time. They remind me of another line in the Stephen Stills song, “For what it’s Worth.” ” Paranoia strikes deep. Into your life it will creep. It starts when you are always afraid. Step out of line the man come take you away.”
If we are to move forward and not backward, Senator Bernie Sanders has the recipe for a successful political revolution. If we are to save our Republic from the excesses of extremism and partisanship the ingredients of his recipe must be put into our political pot and agenda. At a very minimum he and others are having an influence on the favorite to win the Democratic nomination for President, Hillary Clinton. The rebel who leads the revolution does not often see the success of their ideas and programs. But if our leaders would only focus on the truth of what this revolution in our politics is about, we as a nation will once again be the country that we have been and move on, forward into the future, by having faith in the people, and by returning our government back to the people.
There’s something happening here and it is a political revolution. Join the revolution and make our country better. It can happen. As it has been said you get the government you deserve, be part of the solution. Be a citizen soldier for our democracy and our Republic. It’s up to you.