Fear of Bernie pushes Democratic elite over the edge
Sen. Bernie Sanders' victory in New Hampshire has driven the Democratic Party establishment into mass hysterics. Now they rush to embrace multibillionaire Mike Bloomberg, the former Republican mayor of New York City, to save them from President Donald Trump.
But if they want a "moderate," they've got Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, who came in third in New Hampshire, beating former can't-miss candidates Sen. Elizabeth Warren and former Vice President Joe "Dead Man Walking to South Carolina" Biden.
"No malarkey!" shouts Joe.
Mayor Pete came in second to Sanders. He's calm and says nothing, with elegance. But he might be too calm, bordering on the Manchurian. He never sweats. Do other Mayor Pete models come from the factory with lifelike pores?
"Hello, America! I'm Amy Klobuchar and I will beat Donald Trump," Klobuchar told a crowd of her cheering supporters in New Hampshire. "My heart is full tonight. ...We have beaten the odds every step of the way."
Yes, Amy, you did.
If Bloomberg really wants to get rid of Trump, Mike should just climb down off that little box of his and give $300 million or so to Klobuchar.
She's not perfect. But politics is all about matchups. She's smart, she's got personality. Against Trump, she could win.
The Democratic establishment isn't listening. It's too busy panicking over Bernie.
There are few "moderates" in the Democratic Party. John Kennedy couldn't be nominated by today's Democrats. They've all moved far to the left. And any who are left, like pro-life Democrats, are being hunted to extinction. They're exceedingly rare, like the white-rumped vulture or the Bornean orangutan.
The real reason establishment Democrats are in hysterics over Sanders is this: If he wins, he won't let them control things. That terrifies them. But they don't say that. Instead, they use "Fear of Bernie" and "Fear of Trump" interchangeably, which, sadly, is what people do when in the grip of mass hysteria.
This is what happens when human beings flee from reality — like many did after Trump's 2016 victory over Hillary Clinton.
But when reality intrudes, panic ensues.
This collective obsessional behavior, is, according to scientists, "a phenomenon that transmits collective illusions of threats, whether real or imaginary, through a population in society as a result of rumors and fear."
So wrote the author of "Witchcraft and Mass Hysteria in Terms of Current Psychological Theories." Or perhaps it was Robert E. Bartholomew, who in 2001, presaging the Fear of Bernie, wrote "Little Green Men, Meowing Nuns and Head-Hunting Panics: A Study of Mass Psychogenic Illness and Social Delusion."
Whatever. They were both mentioned on Wikipedia in the footnotes. Did you read their books? I didn't.
There are many examples, including that nun in the Middle Ages who began to meow like a cat, and soon all the sisters of the convent were meowing too.
Or the infamous dancing plague of 1518, which bedeviled Strasbourg as "numerous" people began to dance, uncontrollably, without stopping for weeks. Some died of heart attacks.
The last one was just a few years ago, the Evil Clown Panic of 2016. Americans began reporting having seen random clowns and being scared to death.
Something else happened in 2016. What was it again?
In 2020, the Fear of Bernie manifests itself in media adulation of Mike.
To puff up Bloomberg, Democratic establishment scribes sing his praises, including Thomas Friedman of The New York Times. In "Paging Michael Bloomberg," a gushing column full of childlike yearning for a political savior, Friedman searches for the right candidate to defeat Trump and save us.
"And this candidate knows how to get stuff done — he can fight this fire at the scale of the fire. His team has for years used social networks to promote progressive issues to centrist and conservative audiences. He won't cede the internet/Facebook/Twitter battlefield to Trump's team, who are killers in that space. And this candidate is now rising steadily in the polls. This candidate is Michael Bloomberg. This candidate has Trump very worried."
Bloomberg must have loved it. But at the end of the pro-Bloomberg column of gushing praise, there was this from Friedman: (Disclosure: Bloomberg Philanthropies has donated to Planet Word, the museum my wife is building in Washington, to promote reading and literacy.)
Shouldn't that have been the headline, before the Bloomberg gushing commenced?
If I did that in the Chicago Tribune, gushing over a politician who gave money to my wife, I'd be fired.
They're so irrational. It's that fear; the Fear of Bernie, that compels them, for the Love of Mike.
John Kass is a columnist for the Tribune Content Agency.
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