Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Bernie Sanders Turns a Trump Voter Around

Now, I personally know some supporters of Bernie Sanders who flipped and decided to vote for Donald Trump in the general election, and admittedly, could not for the life of me figure out where these people were coming from. 

Okay, I understand that some in the mainstream media were suggesting that there were a lot of similarities between the two, but frankly, those people just did not know what they were talking about. The only thing that they both had in common - and I do mean the only thing - was that they were considered "outsider" in the election. 

Yes, that was it. The only thing. Because anyone with an ounce of objectivity and common sense, who watched both of them even a little, and saw their own personal styles, and their conflicting ideas, would understand at once that these two were and are coming from very different places. 

Let's take a closer look:

Donald Trump is and always has been this eccentric rich guy, even from the first days that I remember him being in the public eye, back in the 1980's. He seemed to me to typify the scummy business tycoon who made a fortune off the pain that he created for others, and then would boast about it. He somehoe became a famous personality, mostly because he had a big mouth and assumed a great deal about his own brilliance. He wrote his book, and continued relishing in his fame, until it culminated with his own reality television show. Somehow, he was one of the commentators for the 2004 election coverage (I believe on CBS), and I was surprised that he seemed as critical as he was of George W. Bush, suggesting that his lies in getting us to the war in Iraq might have cost him the election. A few years later, he was one of the main speakers at a conservative forum, and in the middle of the infamous "birther" debate, and even ran for the White House in 2012. He lost, but he ran again in 2016, and somehow, he managed to get a lead and keep it, beating out 16 other Republican candidates to secure the nomination, before stunning Hillary Clinton and the Democrats in the general election.

Bernie Sanders entered the 2016 presidential race by joining as a Democrat (he had been an independent from Vermont prior to this). He was little known at the time that he announced his candidacy, although he was one of the very few Democrats to challenge Hillary Clinton, who everyone assumed would easily win the nomination. However, Bernie Sander's message resonated with people, and his campaign grew an impressive following and garnered more and more support as it went along. Eventually, it posed a serious challenge to the Clinton campaign, and won 22 states, although the mainstream media and the Democratic Party establishment refused to bend in their labeling him as a "fringe" candidate, and never taking him seriously. Still, that did not stop them from making every effort to discredit Bernie Sanders and hurt his campaign after Hillary Clinton asked for their help. This, coupled with the closed primaries (on public funding) and some strange things that happened in certain state elections allowed Hillary Clinton to finally win, although Bernie Sanders supporters often felt that they simply could not get behind Clinton. As much as many Hillary supporters have suggested that Trump is not their president, a similarly dismissive presence of refusal to vote for this candidate was prevalent and, ultimately, was blamed by many Democrats eager to look for anyone responsible for Hillary's defeat. Of course, according to them, it was anyone and everyone from Bernie Sanders supporters to Jill Stein supporters to fake news sites to the Russians to the FBI director to closet racists and sexists (her famous "basket of deplorables") scattered across the country. The possibility that their candidate, who had her powerful husband illegally meet with the Attorney General while she was under investigation, and who was provided with one of the questions that she was going to be asked during one of the debates, was deeply flawed, dishonest, and intensely disliked never seems to occur to them. 

In any case, the two men are very different, clearly. The only ones who believe otherwise are those conditioned to believe that anyone other than the supposed "normal" or "standard" political candidate - people like Hillary Clinton and Marco Rubio and Barack Obama and Mitt Romney and Bill Clinton and Jeb and George Bush - are hopeless outsiders and "fringe" candidates.

Now, clearly, the people who feel this way are out of touch. They did not take Trump seriously enough during the Republican primary, as every single other candidate fell. They clearly did not take Sanders seriously enough, as his campaign gained momentum and, with small personal donations numbering in the millions, he was able to mount a very serious campaign that likely would have secured the Democratic nomination if not for interference and illegal involvement by Democratic Party insiders. This was the year when, finally, people got sick and tired of conventional political candidates, with their pre-scripted answers and talking points studied on index cards, like the "Marcobot" on the Republican side.

Trump and Sanders were both political outsiders, and troubled the privileged insiders to the breaking point in this election year. That is what they have in common, and that is all that they have in common, because their ideas, their personal styles, and their backgrounds could not have been more different. Sanders was direct and very frank, relying on the intelligence of his audience to understand how he diagnosed what was wrong with America. Trump, by contrast, is loud and boisterous, the very face of what much of the rest of the world finds most obnoxious about America. He flaunted his success, claimed to "know" more about things than the experts, and claimed that he, and he alone, could save America. Sanders was a team player, wanting what is best for the country, and knowing that he needed people to get behind that message that he has stayed true to for over four decades. Trump changed his mind on big issues a little too easily, so that many people felt that he lacked conviction. A nice way of saying this is that he is a pragmatist, as opposed to being a political ideologue. Sanders was loud in his own way, although he never said things that parents would be embarrassed or ashamed (or both) to have their children hear. He never was guilty of anything that could be dismissed as "locker room talk." And he never insulted whole groups of people, like Trump did with Mexicans, Muslims, women, and blacks (or like Hillary did, again, with her "basket of deplorables" statement which dismissed millions). 

And all of that is based on their personal styles! Their ideas could not have been more different! Trump ran against things, while vaguely claiming the ability to "Make America Great Again!" Sanders blasted the unparalleled levels of corruption, and urged Americans to take the country back from corrupt politicians, huge corporations, and billionaires exerting their influence over lawmakers. He was in favor of making the rich pay their fair share and lessening the burden on American workers. He believed that tax money, instead of going towards funding absurd wars, should instead go towards helping everyday Americans by creating a universal, single-payer healthcare system, in getting free public education system, and investing in other things that would help real, working people. Trump, a billionaire himself, seems to favor continuing the supremacy of corporations and billionaires in America, and while advocating gutting Obamacare, his own ideas on what to replace it with are very, very vague. Also, he seems to be in favor of cutting benefits and salaries, while Sanders was firmly in favor of thise. And their environmental positions could not be more different. Sanders believes the 97 percent of th world's scientists who look at the evidence and believe that climate change poses a very serious and inevitable dilemma for humanity in the relatively near future, and that we need to do our part to cut emissions and, to the extent possible, to create a healthier, cleaner world. Trump quite clearly has expressed cynicism of the "climate change theory" and claims it is a hoax created by China to hurt America's economy, and his appointments of clowns who agree that it is all a hoax reinforces just how ridiculous he thinks this all is. 

Those were some of the most obvious differences between the two. They differed in quite a few other ways and positions, as well. So, it really is a wonder how anyone could simply go from Bernie Sanders to Donald Trump, given how radically different than they are.

Surely, no one knows this better than Bernie Sanders himself, and in this video clip below, he addresses these differences himself, and to someone who wound up voting for none other than Donald Trump in the general election. Take a look at the video clip:

Watch Bernie Sanders convince a Trump voter she voted for the wrong person — in less than 2 minutes Tom Boggioni TOM BOGGIONI 13 DEC 2016:

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