No matter who wins in November, the fight isn’t over
I’m not saying we should assume anything yet, but of the likely outcomes, I do see Biden as more likely and better than Trump. However, as Umair Haque points out, that is “the lowest of all possible bars.” It’s bad enough that the establishment hands us this non-choice, but I find it even more insulting that so many are trying to act like we should be enthusiastic about a Biden/Harris ticket. To get this out of the way: yes, it is awesome that we could have a woman of color as VP, but let’s not pretend there weren’t other, better choices there. I also have to say that I find the idea of having to support whoever the DNC serves up, unequivocally, extremely troubling. That seems like the same sort of cult behavior I constantly hear the right being (rightly) accused of.
I do understand that many people are going for the “harm reduction” vote here. I get that, and I won’t try to change your mind, but let’s look at what we’re really dealing with. Let’s at least acknowledge that while the largest protest movement this country has ever seen is in the streets demanding change specifically in regards to policing, they give us the guy who helped write the 1994 crime bill, and a “top cop” who spoke against building schools instead of prisons.
I won’t presume to speak for the Black Lives Matter movement, but I do think it’s worth noting that Joe Biden is a poster boy for the systemic racism that makes the movement necessary. We could go back through his history for examples, but we don’t even have to. I’m no expert on sociology, but from what I understand (and this makes perfect sense), one of the problems with systemic racism is that people sometimes don’t even realize that they’re doing it. Biden seems to be running a masterclass lately on examples of this.
There are other reasons for concern as well. I’ve been hearing a lot about Biden’s foreign policy team, often in response to pointing out his own record. Apparently, this is supposed to make me feel better, but it doesn’t. This is also supposed to be a point in favor of Harris as VP, but again, I’m not impressed. Calling the Saudis, the world’s greatest sponsor of global terrorism, “strong partners” isn’t a great start. The bit about the U.S. needing to “stand up forcefully for human rights in China and around the world” also implies support for continued U.S. imperialism, which isn’t great either.
Bringing things back home for a minute, I would also like to point out that they have both been rather friendly with Wall Street. Especially in light of how the democratic establishment seems to be proving their loyalty to their corporate masters, even during a massive pandemic, with millions facing eviction, that is truly alarming.
I have no special insight or expertise as far as making predictions, but I’ve been through a few election cycles, and I have some specific fears about how this could play out. I would love to be proven wrong on all of these, but I have so little faith, and past evidence is not good.
- Biden/Harris will be more pro-war, pro-police state, and anti-worker than Obama/Biden.
- Despite this, the right will, of course, attack them as “radical leftists.” This will work on their supporters, and a significant portion of the American public, many of whom consider themselves “apolitical.”
- Despite the right having outed themselves as actual fascists, Biden, Harris, and the democratic establishment will “compromise” with them, in the name of uniting America.
- Liberals, having spent the election cycle telling us we have to vote Biden so we can have hope of moving him left, will switch to defense mode. I’m still hearing about how the reason the Obama presidency was so bad is because the republicans kept blocking him. Yep, sure. It had nothing to do with him being an actual republican.
- In 4 or 8 years, the republicans will run an even more extreme fascist than Trump, likely smarter, because of course they’ll have to, and who isn’t? The democratic establishment, in their infinite wisdom, will run more “compromise” candidates. If we’re lucky, they won’t be as bad as Trump/Pence. Even if they are, liberals will still be telling us to “vote blue no matter who.”
I can see the liberals clutching their pearls already, because they would never defend a fascist! Well, I hate to break it to you, but you’re doing it right now. I can also hear the variations on “…better than Trump, an actual fascist,” but note that it ends up there anyway. I’m not saying this is inevitable, hence the thing about the fight not being over.
In the Secular Talk video that I took the quotation in the subtitle from, Kyle Kulinski also plays an ad with part of the Noam Chomsky interview in which he makes a case for those in swing states to vote Biden. I’m not going to argue against that point, rather, I will point to something else Chomsky says there. He mentions keeping pressure on Biden “as Sanders and associates have been doing.” I think we need to do even better than that, but the point stands. The fight isn’t over in November, no matter what.
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