Lacking a comparative sense of antiquity possessed by our European neighbors, and in the absence of the long-term evolution of a workable system of governance based upon historical precedent, the US claimed the position as the foremost bastion of democracy. This self-appointed leadership role in world affairs should be accompanied by a moral imperative; upholding truth, justice, honor and fairness as a shining example of the maturing of the American experiment. But as we discover after reading the final page of any fairy tale and taking a moment after closing and reshelving the book, reality is sadly something quite different. In the end, we usually get just what we deserve.
In the US the two-party democratic process is put to the test every four years with the election of a leader. As the 2016 presidential primary unfolded, we were dismayed to discover that the choice of leaders was something less than ideal. The “interesting” selection of Republican candidates reflected just what that political party has become, and Donald Trump aptly mirrors the fake orange-tinted visage that is the culmination of Republican principles. The Democratic party appropriately gave us a more reasonable alternative of two viable candidates. One was old-school centrist with a killer instinct, tit-for-tat experience in raising funds from special interests, and an insider’s knowledge of backroom and boardroom deals. The alternative was Bernie Sanders.
Sanders had a reasoned and rational message and built an incredible following of fresh faces who saw in him a glimmer of hope for what otherwise looks like a bleak future, and old faces who saw him as the very last chance of preserving our rapidly disintegrating democratic system. As his campaign gained momentum, the dirty tricks from the Clinton camp emerged and swarmed like pestilence from the prised-open lid of Pandora’s box. The Clintons had the connections, the backing and the funding to claim what was seen as a birthright, and there was simply no standing in their way. This extreme sense of entitlement drove the Clinton’s campaign to the point that it completely laid waste to the moral landscape. Local party favors were called in. State election boards were instructed to place roadblocks in front of potential Sanders votes. The national Democratic Party was co-opted and instructed to impede the Sanders campaign in any way possible. And worst of all, the corporate media was instructed to bury any and all positive reporting on the Sanders campaign.
While in theory we are delighted by the prospect of witnessing the election of the first woman president of the US, we are not impressed with this particular person. We need the shining example of a hero who occupies the moral high ground. What we get is the continuation of the right-of-center Clinton dynasty. What we get is Lady Macbeth.