Common Dreams - February 4, 2020

"I respectfully encourage the DNC to abandon its corporate allegiance, re-configure its membership and shift into alignment with the will of the people. Abandon your corporate donors and get behind the rising tide of small “d” democracy in this country. Otherwise, the Democratic Party will forfeit any last shreds of its legitimacy."

Dear DNC officials:

I come from a long line of Democrats. My grandparents survived the Great Depression because of FDR’s New Deal, and both of my parents were loyal Democrats as well. In my adult lifetime, I proudly registered as a Democrat at age 18, in the 1990s. Since then, I have become extremely disillusioned, watching the Democratic Party become more and more corporate-funded and corporate-aligned to the point where I do not recognize it anymore.

Today, our centrist candidates, like Bernie Sanders, have been labeled and sidelined by the mainstream media as “radical,” “fringe,” and “extreme.” Should we trust this characterization given that the mainstream media is largely owned by giant corporations, whose key motives are protecting their own profits? Meanwhile, social and economic inequality has sky-rocketed in the United States and worldwide in recent decades. In 2020, the world’s billionaires control more wealth than the poorest 4.6 billion people combined.  The middle class continues to shrink in the US, and many Americans are just struggling to survive. Under these conditions, proposals like maintaining social security, increasing the minimum wage, providing universal healthcare coverage, protecting the environment for future generations, and making college accessible to young people are not radical positions! These are centrist positions because a majority of Americans support them.  These positions would have formed a basic policy platform for an FDR administration. What the corporate media calls left-wing is actually moderate, by any recent polling on these basic social issues. Americans have really not moved so far to the left in their support for Bernie Sanders. But the Democratic Party has moved consistently and unrelentingly to the corporate right. In its alliance with the corporate, neoliberal ruling-class, the Democratic Party is now hardly distinguishable from the Republican Party in its level of corporate corruption. It’s no wonder voter turnout rates in this country have been so pathetically low.

Thankfully, the US public is getting harder and harder to fool. Like millions of other Sanders supporters, I was awake during the 2016 presidential primaries. And I was enraged when the news came out that the DNC had colluded with various mainstream media outlets to smear and destroy the Sanders campaign. We watched… as the AP and these same mainstream media outlets, not the state of California, called the results of the Democratic Primary for HRC before California even finished counting its votes. We watched… as super-delegates cast their votes for Clinton in states like Colorado, after Sanders won the caucus by a wide margin.  We watched… in disgust as Sanders delegates were sidelined at the Democratic Convention. We now understand the role the DNC has played in subverting democracy and pledging allegiance to the corporate elite. ...
Read full commentary at Common Dreams