by Russell Dobular

In spite of what you might have heard, Democrats aren’t stupid. Nor are they spineless, cowardly, incapable of messaging, or any of the other things offered as explanations for their decades-long failure to win most elections in most places, or to secure meaningful policy reforms for their voters. In the now famous words of Marco Rubio, spoken during his campaign-ending broken robot moment on the 2016 debate stage, “Lets dispel with this fiction that Barrack Obama doesn’t know what he’s doing. He knows exactly what he’s doing.” 

Yes, he does.  And so does the rest of the Democratic Party.  If you understand the Democrats as a party whose first priority is to win elections and then serve their voters once in office, then you have to look for far-fetched explanations for their actions, which often appear to be completely at odds with those objectives. What party eager to win over the middle of the country would repeatedly vote to make a wealthy San Francisco doyenne like Nancy Pelosi their Speaker? She’s a walking advertisement for the image of Democrats as a party of out of touch elites, more concerned with arcane speech codes than labor laws. But if you understand the Democrats as a party primarily concerned with raking in big bucks from wealthy donors, while drawing enough superficial distinctions with their opponents to maintain their identity as a separate party, then everything they do is pretty frikkin’ brilliant. Like forcing Joe Biden on their voters.

Let’s be absolutely clear: Bernie Sanders would undoubtedly have been the party’s nominee this year without the interference of its leadership. A lot of ink has been spilled about the failings of Bernie 2020, and some of those points are valid, but let’s not forget that Sanders won the first three states in the primary calendar, all while facing unprecedented hostility from the corporate media and party elites, so clearly he did a lot of things right. No other candidate has ever won the first two states without going on to secure the nomination, much less all three. 

But no other candidate so universally feared and loathed by the money people and the consultant class has ever gotten so close to the big prize. Close enough that they were willing to drop all pretense of neutrality and fairness to ensure on the eve of Super Tuesday that instead of facing a fractured field of milquetoast moderates, Sanders would be going mano a mano with only Joe Biden, a man who voters had completely rejected in humiliating fashion right up until South Carolina. Remember, this was before we understood exactly how bad the coronavirus was going to be, or how badly Trump and the GOP would botch their response. No modern Democrat has ever won without high youth voter turnout, and there’s no way they didn’t understand that crushing the candidate of young voters was going to suppress their vote. Nor has any modern Democrat ever won without a high share of the Latino vote, and yet they chose to publicly and openly conspire against the candidate who was the clear choice of Latino voters. 

All this in order to run a notoriously thin-skinned politician in the obvious throes of cognitive decline against the world’s most infamous bully. Without coronavirus, Biden was a sure loser and there’s no way the party’s decision makers and strategists didn’t understand that. No, they aren’t that stupid. If you consider that the battle they’re fighting is only secondarily against the GOP, and primarily against the left wing of their own party, what they did was actually very smart.

These folks can read a poll as well as anyone, and they understand that in the normal course of things their days are numbered. For years, Democrats have talked up their coalition of the ascendant; the new, young, diverse, and thoroughly blue no matter who electorate that was going to someday hand them majorities as far as the eye could see.  But now that it’s on the verge of arriving, it doesn’t look quite like what they were expecting. Turns out that rising electorate wants policies that will actually allow them to rise in more than a symbolic sense and isn’t quite as satisfied by platitudes and kente cloth as the old white liberal coalition was. They want universal health care, they want higher wages, they want student loan forgiveness, they want free college; in other words, they want the people they vote for to do something for them beyond diversifying their office staff. The problem for Democrats is that all the things they want them to do are a direct threat to the grift they’ve been running since the day Bill Clinton formally announced the death of the party’s animating FDR spirit by proudly informing the public that “the days of big government are over.” The Reaganite small government ethos that’s ruled both parties ever since, simply cannot be reconciled with the demands of voters whose first priority is economic justice.  So what do you do when your base sees through the hollowness of your politics and demands that you do better? Find a different base.  And that’s where Joe Biden comes in.

The Biden campaign is a Trojan horse in the truest sense: it’s an empty vessel through which the Dems are attempting to substitute a portion of the GOP’s base for a portion of their own. The Democrats gearing their message towards white, professional class suburban voters is nothing new. They’ve been doing it for at least 30 years, first winning over the socially liberal/economically conservative “Rockefeller Republicans” in order to make up for their losses with union voters in the wake of NAFTA. Now they’re attempting with this election to win over the even more conservative “moderate Republicans” of this generation by running the kind of candidate who would promise in the midst of a pandemic and an ongoing populist uprising to veto Medicare for All, and not raise taxes on anyone making less than $400K a year. They’re not worried about handing over control of the party to Republicans in the process, because a Democratic Party dominated by moderate Republicans doesn’t look very different from what we have now – there’s hardly a shade of difference between your average liberal and your average “Never Trumper” ideologically. 

The rising left, however, is an existential threat to the party’s modern make-up, ideology, and standard operating procedures. If they lose to Trump while trying to make the shift, something that was almost guaranteed at the time they decided to force Biden down the country’s collective throat, that’s really not a problem. Trump is great for fundraising and his sheer awfulness takes the onus off the Dems to be much better. Just being a little better than Trump is all they really need to be for as long as he’s in office. Seen from that perspective, Biden is a win-win. They either crush the left by assembling a new, even more conservative coalition, or they once again scapegoat the left for their losses and spend another four years pretending the country didn’t go to shit until 1/20/17. So if you’re a deeply corrupt member of the fake-left half of the country’s ruling elite, where’s the downside? It’s nothing but upside for everyone except the voters.

There’s only one flaw in this plan.  It doesn’t take into account the dangers of breaking the social contract so severely that the population becomes ungovernable.  Only a fool would believe that we can continue on our current course of spiraling wealth inequality combined with a collapsing quality of life, now severely exacerbated by a global pandemic, without a reckoning. Unfortunately, in keeping with their French, Chinese and Russian predecessors, our leaders are those fools. History shows us that those most in danger of getting on the wrong end of a People’s Tribunal, are always the last to see it coming. With Trump we get there a little faster, with Biden a little slower (maybe), but the American economic and political system as currently constituted is clearly unsustainable. 

Vote your conscience in November in light of these realities (personally, I’m writing in Dave Chapelle), but know that the real battle is going to start the day after the voting ends.

Photo: Eric Thayer, Reuters

18 thoughts on “Joe Biden is a Trojan Horse: Inside is the Democrats’ New Right Wing Coalition

  1. This post is so on point. As a lifelong Democrat I registered independent for the first time this year and will again forever now until they truly represent the working class.

    I’ll be voting Green.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Absolutely!! I’ve been saying for years and all along that the Democrats have a lot of wolves in sheep clothing! They pretend to be great till you need them to vote great! Then they vote with the evil side they’re supposedly against it doesn’t make any sense unless you think about it they’re all bought and paid for by the same evil one percent and corporations that don’t care about us at all apparently!


  3. I’ve been saying for a long time that the Dems – who have been run by the 3rd way DLC repub light corporatists since the Clinton days, have been waiting, salivating for the collapse of the republican party so they could become the new corporate “moderate” ostensibly republican party… and that they’ll wait around to lose to them so they can keep bellying up to the corporate cash donation feeding trough rather than embrace the demographic shift of young (& old) voter progressives who they HATE‼️


  4. This is crap. When the house is burning you don’t critique the firemen’s shoes. You want to hand this to Trump, just as Biden shifts left while also trying to get elected in a country containing a hundred million that are not ready to take that path too far(in their opinion, not mine), have at it damn it, but not today, not the day of John Lewis’ burial and life celebration, not the day that Obama and Pelosi, and Clinton, spoke so eloquently and passionately. Damn, get over yourself.


    1. No, you don’t critique the Fireman’s shoes, however if that fireman is adding fuel to the fire, even to make a little bit worse, you should criticize his actions, be that of his shoes, or anything else. When the establishment shoe-horns in their “Chosen One” after a real champion of the People has won several primaries, then fixes the elections so that the Party’s choice wins, it is high time to look at the Party, especially when they get endorsements from the competition.
      Many fail to realize that if Dictator Don is, by some odd chance, re-selected, and the Senate goes Dem, while the House stays Dem, which are both quite likely, Nectarine Nero can be once again impeached, and his prosecution in the Senate could be more of a fair trial than the kangaroo court that Moscow Mitch conducted.
      Many also fail to see that there is no “left” in the US. There is only a conservative, and conservative-lite version of political parties. It is high time that there were many more parties, as there is in most modern democracies in the world.


  5. Mr Dobular says the American economic and political system as currently constituted is clearly unsustainable. He is apsolutely right.
    But he “accidentaly” forgets to explain who, how and when has to transform the American economic and political system to an sustainable system for the American workers and environment exclusively.


  6. Write in Bernie Sanders! 43 states allow write in and Bernie is the closest candidate to we the people and what we want/deserve. If enough of us do it, it will send a message loud and clear to the corrupt DNC! Their days ARE numbered! It is time to recapture the Democratic Party and make the damned republicans get out and move to their own party. Vote progressive down ballot! Turn both houses deep blue. Lock Trump in a box! No appointments to the courts no new bills, no vetos will be honored, executive orders will be overturned, the military brass hates him, so no military coupe. It will be fabulous! He will throw himself on the ground in front of the cameras like a toddler throwing a tantrum!

    Remember friends and neighbors, we can force them back to the left where we belong if we play our cards right! The Neoliberals are not as invincible as MSNBC and CNN would have you believe! (Remember these outlets are now owned by oligarchs who want to control the narrative, not inform the public and Bernie Sanders promised to break up their monopolies! They hate him and his democratic platform as much as the conservatives do). Pelosi has one opponent this November, a progressive democratic socialist named Shahid Buttar! There is no Republican challenger for her seat! Buttar is an attorney, a human rights activist and a professor! He stands for US! #MedicareForAll #ANewGreenDeal #ALivingWage #AffordableHousing and #TaxpayerFundedCollege. Let’s get him n her seat. Get Amy McGrath (I know, I know…) in McConnells seat and move the houses so deeply into the blue that we wake up the sleeping civil soul of our nation and make our government work for us again!


  7. Excellent!!! America needs fundamental reforms…FDR “New Deal” type reforms…and that’s not happening as long as Wall Street runs both parties.
    What’s “irresponsible” is doing the same thing over and over again (i.e. voting for the Washington establishment’s candidates) and expecting different results.
    A couple more points …
    The first concept to grasp is that elections are a process NOT a terminal event. Hence the term “Election Cycle.” I don’t buy the disaster movie theme that Trump is the next “Hitler,” or that electing Trump means America’s next stop is a fascist state. I have faith in American citizens and our separation of powers federal system of government.
    After all, the main reason Democrats were able to reverse a 100-year low House membership level, and take back the House majority in 2018, was that Hillary Clinton lost in 2016.
    Losing the right election makes a difference.
    There are numerous examples where losing an election sets up winning a transformational next election. In economics the process is called “Creative Destruction.” Franklin Roosevelt would never have become president without Al Smith losing in 1928 to Hoover. On the negative side … Neither would Reagan have won in 1980, if President Ford hadn’t lost to Jimmy Carter in 1976.
    Congressional Democrats were setup to win in the following 2018 off year election by an unpopular president in the White House. And in the 2020 Election, progressives were able to field competitive presidential candidates … that would have been impossible, if the Clintons were in the White House. The fact that Sanders squandered the 2020 Election opportunity by not vigorously taking out Wall Street’s chosen GoFers is unforgiveable. But there will be other election opportunities in 2022 and 2024.
    Second, repeatedly accepting the 2nd worst option never gets you to an opportunity to select the best option. The “Lesser of Two Evils” choice is a Chump Call. It’s a rigged election that Wall Street has been running at least since Bill Clinton’s 1992 Election. The only way to break free of that is to defeat Wall Street’s Chosen Ones in a Democratic Primary and then win the General Election. That’s the critical path forward. Everything else is buying a ticket on a merry-go-round.
    Finally, both political parties are controlled by Wall Street’s monied interests … and have been for decades. That needs to change. One party must break free. Electing Joe Biden cements in place Wall Street running both parties for at least another decade … and that’s the real threat to our post-industrial civilized society (see my Sep. 2016 St Louis Post Op-Ed … same logic in 2020…


  8. Swing state voters: it’s not a vote for Neoliberal Biden but a vote against Fascist Trump. All others vote your conscience. Swing state voters: it’s just politics, not religion. It’s your freedoms not your soul.bite for the lesser of two evils. That’s the politically savvy thing to do. Regroup and go Progressive after the election.


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