After the bizarre, ranting spectacle of the GOP convention, the Democrats’ gathering in Philadelphia was a breath of fresh air. Their celebrities were actual celebrities. Their business and political leaders were actual leadership figures in the real world, not just CEOs of shady Trump businesses. They had actual former Presidents in attendance, like a credible, mainstream political party.
Democrats successfully portrayed themselves as the last remaining adults in American politics, placing a narrative frame around the 2016 that virtually guarantees a win. Viewed in comparison to the Republican Party, Democrats look solid. However, viewed in comparison to the past, the cracks become easier to spot. The Politics of Crazy is threatening the engulf the Democratic Party just a few years behind the GOP.
What really happened in 2016 is that the most prominent, popular, competent figure in the Democratic Party nearly lost the nomination to some random old grump who signed up to run on a whim. Bernie Sanders wasn’t even a Democrat until he launched his campaign and he renounced his membership when the whole charade ended. If Clinton had been challenged from the left by someone under seventy who owned a comb, she probably would have lost and this year’s DNC would have looked just like the RNC, but with more weed and much, much better entertainment.
Kanye West has already threatened/promised to run in 2020. If he isn’t distracted by something trivial out of the corner of his vision he might actually follow through. If not Yeezy, it’s entirely likely that some other half-awake celebrity might take up the mantle (paging Ms. Sarandon…). Should this happen, it’s tough to imagine how Clinton could hold them off again.
Here’s a little sample of the lunacy growing at the margins of the Democratic Party. Buckle up folks.
The left’s answer to Breitbart, Democracy Now, documented the lonely struggle of principled Berniebots against the horrors of the Democratic machine.
From the Washington Post: Paid seat-fillers, credentials stripped from principled protesters, signs ripped away, lights turned off. These are just a few of false convention narratives that have circulated in the growing fever swamps of left-wing conspiracy nuts.
From People Magazine (that’s right, get used to it): Susan Sarandon has taken all the abuse she can stand and she “can’t stands no more.”
From The Chicago Tribune: Clarence Page describes the scene among Bernie supporters at the DNC.
From Crooks and Liars: Think crazy conspiracy theories are a right-wing problem? Sanders supporters chanted “lock her up” at the DNC.
Finally, another warning from The Politics of Crazy:
“Both of these candidates [Trump & Sanders] embody the tension between our duties as citizens and our desires as consumers. They represent our frustration with a political culture premised on collective duties next to an economic culture premised on atomized, instantaneous, individual satisfaction.”