While covering the Democratic and Republican debates in Miami, Florida, a Bernie Sanders supporter talked to me about presidential elections.
“The best liar wins; millions are spent to award the biggest liar,” he said.
Ronald Reagan ignited conservative orgasms throughout America by telling us “government is the problem.” He then used his government to lift the oh-so–struggling plutocrat class with huge tax breaks, deregulation, union-busting and race-baiting.
George W. Bush was a moderate, compassionate conservative eager to sanitize the smell of Clinton out of the White House.
He certainly was compassionate—for the same struggling plutocrat class Reagan championed. And that smelly, Clinton stink in the Oval office? Gone, replaced by the smell of dead American soldiers, killed in a war launched not in reaction to weapons of mass destruction but in response to theNeocon-Cowboys-Club egging him on.
Barack Obama would end politics as usual and change establishment hearts and minds through hope and change. He’d usher in a post-partisan D.C utopia and finally offer the country the progressive shock therapy it needed to halt an economic collapse.
Instead of fighting extremist Republicans full-force and tapping into his exemplary oratorical gifts to rally voters against them, he’s constantly met them on their turf.
Historic universal healthcare originally spawned right out of the conservative Heritage Foundation that gave insurers a big, sloppy kiss. A trade deal that’s corporate America’s wet dream; a moderate, Republican-light Supreme Court nominee—you hoped, but the change was artificial, tickling establishment Democrats while leaving struggling Americans left clinging onto hope (and some onto Donald Trump).
And now 2016, with a series of candidates that lie almost as much as they breathe.
Ted Cruz loves the constitution as he calls for Republicans to abandon it to block Obama’s Supreme Court nominee.
Donald Trump says Obama’s economic stimulus was exactly the right course to take; assault weapons should be banned; Syrian refugees should be allowed into the U.S.; and the U.S. should launch a preemptive war against Iraq.
That all happened in reality: but how would you know? Media laziness and ratings greed allowed him to recreate history, launching birtherism; becoming a 2nd-amendment zealot; calling for a refugee and Muslim ban into the country; and you guessed it, assuming the position of clairvoyant who opposed Iraq before it began.
Hillary Clinton—the progressive who “gets things done.” You just have to guess what things she’ll do since her positions change poll to poll, news cycle to news cycle. election to election.
And Bernie Sanders—the one candidate who tells the truth, inspires a groundswell of citizen support and funding, pops the lid wide open on the revolving door between lobbyists, bankers, media, and lawmakers—is just too radical to be president.
Which of the liars will ultimately win? Ultimately, whichever one’s most glaring lie gets leaked out closest to election day.
When we all lose.
Follow Jordan on Twitter @JordanChariton