It ended the way it began, with Bernie Sanders drawing huge energetic crowds and winning few votes from blacks and Hispanics. Sanders could never connect with the most vulnerable voters in the country. That fact alone doomed his campaign.
Those vast crowds seemed to have acted on Sanders like a kind of opiate, numbing him to the political reality of his campaign. The Sanders campaign staff had known for months that the senator had no path to victory. Sanders's top political hired-hacks took pleasure in plunging anonymous knives into their leader's back, while they polished up their resumés for a job with Team Clinton.
Running as an economic revolutionary, Sanders spent most of his time in the cozy milieu of college campuses instead of in desolate urban landscapes or working-class suburbs. It's hard to earn the trust of poor people when you don't spend much time in their company. Sanders didn't do much to endear himself to the American underclass.
Obama and Hillary Clinton are both neoliberals, who have betrayed organized labor and pushed job-killing trade pacts across the world. Hillary and Obama are simply manifestations of the power structure of the Democratic Party itself, which is unapologetically hawkish. Sanders curious timidity against confronting Obama's policies, from drone warfare to the president's bailout of the insurance industry (AKA ObamaCare), hobbled Sanders from the starting gate.
Sanders failed to land any punches against Hillary for her catastrophic Honduran and Libyan debacles. To the extent that the party machine suppressed the Sanders insurgency, it wasn't a matter of corruption but self-preservation. Sanders served the valuable function of energizing and registering on the Democratic Party rolls tens of thousands of new voters, who otherwise would have been content to stay at home playing Warcraft and Snapchatting about the latest Kardashian outrage.
The biggest threat that Sanders posed to the Democratic machine was his ability to raise independent money, and lots of it, outside of the party's control. The most recent tally shows that Sanders raised more than $212 million, a staggering amount, mostly from small online donors. He broke the money-dispensing monopoly of the DNC and deserves credit for that. Most of that cash went to those duplicitous consultants.
The most energetic political movement in the country right now is the combative Chicano-led masses stalking Trump and his racist retinue from venue-to-venue. Real political revolutions begin after the futility of the ballot box has been proven. Sustainable movements are driven by issues not personalities.
Your move, Sandernistas. (Jeffrey St Clair)