I had the sinking feeling last night that things were not going to turn out for Bernie the way I had hoped. In 2016, voters only became aware of the very real establishment push against Bernie Sanders after it was too late to do anything. The coronation of Hillary hit a major roadblock and the result was a very ugly and public airing of the dirty laundry the Democratic Party was keeping under wraps. During this cycle, I believe a lot of voters thought Bernie was going to get a fair shake and balanced coverage on the establishment media outlets. This simply did not happen and was even more brazen than the 2016 cycle. Over the past sevetral weeks I spent dozens of hours in the car driving from Iowa to New Hampshire, to South Carolina, North Carolina, and other locations in my home state of Illinois. During this time I listened mostly to MSNBC and would toggle to Fox News every now and then to hear what my old team had to say about the state of the race. It is obvious to me now, the blatant manipulation of the media and DNC is at a level I never thought would be possible. When I was in New Hampshire at the DoubleTree Hotel in Manchester, I was within earshot of Chris Matthews speaking with what appeared to be two men representing the donor class. While I could not make out what the two gentlemen were saying, I did here Mr. Matthews say…”everyone is freaking out and trying to figure out how to steer this thing to Bloomberg”. It is difficult to come up with anything smart to write after hearing these words from one of the most “respected” and well known “journalists” on television today. What Chris Matthews and MSNBC do is definitely not journalism! It is not reporting! It is not fact checking! It is not investigative! The “journalists” that we have come to rely on for our “news”, at every level, have all been “bought and paid for“. I have always believed that if you need to find the answer to a difficult question in our society, ALWAYS FOLLOW THE MONEY. So, I went to the trusty internet and looked up the net worth of Chris Hayes, Rachel Maddow, Lawrence O’Donnell, and Chris Matthews. They all have a net worth of between $5 million and $20 million. That is an enormous amount of money to pay someone for reading the news. Lets look a bit closer at the money flow. All four of these news readers are paid between $5 million and $7 million a year! What do they spend their money on??? I have no doubt that all of these entertainers started out their journalistic careers with every good intention of making a difference and uncovering the truth. I know my own weaknesses and if I were presented with a $6 million check every year for reading the news, I very well could be swayed to steer the message to where my benefactors wanted. There is a shit ton (that is an official term) of money spent advertising all sorts (a shit ton) of products, medicines, and services meant to make out lives “better”. All those advertising dollars then go to pay the huge salaries of Rachel, the Chris’s, and Larry O’. It is then the job of those personalities to present the “news” in a manner that keeps the audience engaged and tuned in ALL THE TIME. They (not just the news readers) do this by inserting a tone of fear in literally every message they send our way. It is easy for a person to see things differently when there is a seven figure check waiting for you at the end of your shift. In this society we call this “bought and paid for“. Not only are our politicians not advocating for us, but the journalists we rely on for information that effects our lives have also left us to hang in the changing winds of this democratic experiment. HELP IS NOT COMING!!!
A life in the lanes
Living under two lanes
The big iron
Bringing souls safely home
Or to visit from a far away land
A modern Mayflower, yes
Bringing the littlest of creatures too
Also iron lanes heading south
To put in an honest days toil
Some on the inside
Others the out
Exercising the soul
Is trick work
And that is a tricky word
The pulley of routine
Takes us away
And returns us
To the souls under our roof
Painted lanes a bit a bit more curvy
More option comes more risk
Of getting stuck outside the lanes
The lanes keep us safe
All the way to the end
So here’s a thought for everyone – it is clear that Donald Trump likes to buy votes. Or at least lie about votes he bought, but indeed did no such thing. So he bought some votes with subsidies to the agricultural industry and farmers in the bread basket.
I was born in flyover country in Knox County Illinois. I am in no way blaming farmers or what they do for this country. What I am trying to do is point out the absolute hypocrisy displayed by Republicans as they cut welfare food stamps for low income people but then provide similar subsidies to farmers in order to not lose their vote, as a result of not being able to sell their corn and soy beans. This really is vote buying at its finest. And using taxpayer dollars to do so I might add.
Now I was continuing with my thought and wondered if Trump wanted to buy the most votes possible, why wouldn’t he increase subsidies for low income folks? There are more of them than there are farmers in Iowa. Oh I forgot for just a minute, he is racist through and through.
So I’m finishing my second beef and cheddar as I make my way to New Hampshire, and I had a really great idea and vision for what is happening right now.
I believe the current state of our democracy and the two party system is breaking under the weight of its own hubris. This could indeed be the way we get a multiparty system to represent all of America rather than just corporate interests which both parties execute flawlessly.
As the younger generations witness what’s happening now, make no mistake, they’re learning how NOT to do things. There will be candidates who run for local office and third and fourth parties for Mayor in big cities, and for state legislatures. There will be congressional races with five different candidates running all funded by different people in different ways. Slowly billionaires will lose the grip they have on power. It took them a long time to get it given how our republic was born. So it will take a long time to unwind as well.
I do believe, however, that this democracy will continue to survive for centuries. It’s an ugly thing to watch change and there’s a lot of pain that we all are going to go through. It’s that way with any group of cells bouncing around against each other. Whether it be the cells of your muscle when you work out, tear them down, and rebuild by eating healthy food, or the cells of your mind that may be chemically imbalanced bouncing around in a different way than the general population. Or the cells of a country (a.k.a. the population) all bouncing around against each other. Some of us get sick and some of us stay well, but as a collective, if we stay true and honest to ourselves and our faith, I believe we can get through any darkness.
We are indeed going to be the last generation (X) to have broken a 240 year old democracy. I used to think that generation X was going to save the world, and would joke that our grandparents (the greatest generation) showed us how while our baby boomer parents weren’t paying attention to their parents or their children. It was a great time to grow up in the 70s and 80s wasn’t it my friends? I no longer think this is the case – we are about 20 years too late.
The next generations behind us will indeed be the ones to turn the starship of planet earth back on its correct course so that we can enjoy this small little jam in the middle of our universe for a little bit longer.