Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Why Am I Rooting For Bernie (in the Primaries)?

This article first appeared in Eagle Rising.

Full disclosure: I am rooting for Bernie Sanders to take the nomination away from Hillary Clinton. In fact, I may even cast a vote for him in the California Democratic primary. That's because as an independent, I cannot vote in the Republican primary, but I can vote in the Democratic primary.

It's not that I like Sanders. I don't though I do believe he is not corrupt (like Hillary), and I believe that he honestly believes in the crazy things he says. Bernie isan admitted socialist who went to the former Soviet Union on his honeymoon. His policies are against everything that I, as a free market capitalist, believe in. He would be a disastrous president.

The reason I am rooting for Sanders (in the primaries) is that I cannot stand Clinton. I regard her as only slightly less liberal than Sanders, but thoroughly rotten and crooked. I am praying that she gets indicted by the FBI. Scarily enough, that might be the only thing standing between her and the White House as the Republican party heads toward an implosion over Donald Trump's candidacy.

But make no mistake: I will never vote for Sanders in a general election. Just this past week, he solidified my opposition to a Sanders presidency with his untruthful statements about the last round of Israeli-Hamas fighting in Gaza. He stated that Israel had used disproportionate force (in response to Hamas rockets raining in on Southern Israel) and had killed over 10,000 Gazans. When corrected, he twice more give inaccurate numbers in reiterating that Israel's force was disproportionate.

In truth, there were approximately 2,000 people in Gaza who were killed, some 79% of whom were males of military fighting age. Translation? Israel targeted their response correctly and mostly killed Hamas fighters. Of course, when you are fighting an enemy like Hamas, who fight behind civilian shields in a densely inhabited area like Gaza, collateral damage is inevitable. Yet, the Israelis went to unprecedented lengths to warn civilians to get out of certain target areas before they struck while Hamas fought to actually keep the civilians where they were-as documented by a German news camera crew.

What Sanders, as a flaming liberal, does not understand is that war is not golf with handicaps designed to make it an even match. In World War II, once we gathered our resources after Pearl Harbor, we didn't worry about proportionality. We were fighting for our survival, and little things like flattening German and Japanese cities was not an obstacle.

It also pains me to say it, but I count Sanders as one more Jewish American who is no ally of Israel. Yes, there are plenty of them out there, and it is usually among the liberal set. I keep encountering them in my activism in fighting anti-Semitism on campus (I am Gentile), and they are of no help in that area either.

So I still wish you well, Mr Sanders-until the primary is settled. If  you should somehow happen to win against Clinton, I will be out there at the crack of dawn to vote against you in the general election.


Squid said...

Thanks for the idea Gary. As an Independent, I plan to do the same. In agreement with you on Sanders, I would not vote for him in the general election, but just to put him over Hillary in CA, pleases me.


Siarlys Jenkins said...

I voted for Sanders in the primary, AND I will vote for him in the general election. If it comes down to Hillary or Donald, I may hold my nose and vote for Hillary, but it will be a rough choice. I don't place great confidence in Sanders. He's too close to the liberals, in other words, too right-wing. If he could shed the social-liberal issues, focus on economics, and had some military experience, he would be a better candidate. He may well be a one-term president. But, he'll do the least damage of any available candidate in either party, and may do some good. I'd like to see a conservative pro-life pro-labor homeschooling mother from Texas who supports mass transit and high speed rail as his running mate, but she's not interested.

Gary Fouse said...

Just heard today that independents cannot vote for either Rep or Dem candidates. That lets me off the hook.

Siarlys Jenkins said...

You should move to Wisconsin. Anyone can vote in any primary -- you just have to pick one party or the other when you fill out your ballot -- all your partisan primary votes have to be consistently for the same party, in that particular election.