No sooner had Bernie Sanders lost South Carolina to Joe Biden on Saturday, February 29, than by Sunday, March first, Republican chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Ron Johnson drafted a letter demanding that witnesses to the Hunter Biden/Burisma “scandal” be subpoenaed. As long as the fiction of the Bernie Behemoth dominated the news, the laughably flaccid Hunter Biden nontroversy remained mysteriously abandoned to obscurity, where it would have languished forever if Bernie had garnered the nomination.
One gets a weary sense of reluctance on the part of Republicans to haul this chestnut out again for two reasons. First, even Republicans are aware of how embarrassingly weak the “Burisma scandal” really is, and how dangerous it is to actually call sworn witnesses. Second, they would prefer Bernie as the candidate because they know he would be much easier to defeat. So does everyone else, in fact — except diehard Bernie supporters.
Republican reluctance to revive the Burisma imbroglio stems from the problem inherent with calling witnesses under oath, as they tend to tell the truth and contradict the significantly smaller number willing to lie and shill for Donald Trump. Recall what happened to Gordon Sundland, who suddenly “regained his memory” after testifying the first time. The child rapist Donald Trump and his criminal pirate ship of thugs always look their most pallid under the lacerating illumination of sworn testimony.
But all this is preamble to the central point, that conspiracy theories swirl around Bernie Sanders coming and Bernie Sanders going. Burisma isn’t the only debunked conspiracy theory being cynically hauled out and exploited by Republican overlords and their Russian puppet masters, so, too, is the notion that the wicked old “Corporate Democrats” have once again railroaded poor old Bernie Sanders out of his justly-owed nomination, a nomination he will now almost certainly never receive.
For those who still can’t get their head around it and continue to gripe like kids at a little league game about a perfectly fair umpire call that didn’t go their way, it was the people of South Carolina who voted for Joe Biden, not any corporate machine. It was also the people who gave Biden his majority in nine total states thus far. If Biden wins the nomination, it will also be thanks to the people — and the people alone.
Nevertheless, the idea that the Bernie campaign has been ignominiously hijacked by nefarious corporate Democrats is a Russian-inspired talking point that the Republicans are delighted to exploit and many others are willing to parrot. That Republicans (and, by extension, Russians) would prefer Bernie Sanders as the nominee ought to trouble a shockingly untroubled Bernie fan base. If I ever found out that, say, the Ku Klux Klan backed the same candidate I did, I would want to know why. Bernie acolytes remain troublingly untroubled. If I were like them I would suspect a conspiracy. But because I am unlike them I suspect they are stupid instead.
“Conspiracy theories make dumb people feel smart,” as Ken Rutkowski puts it. It takes a special kind of blindness to believe that people can be enlisted by the hundreds, or even thousands, and agree to lie in the name of a conspiracy — without ever spilling the beans about the conspiracy to anyone. Drs. Dunning and Kruger assure us that such people remain serious to the end and are always the last to realize just how limited their own wisdom is.
I know, I know, here come the long, tedious, statistic-heavy “rebuttals” in the comment field of this article. It’s inevitable. The sheer microscopy of it is staggering. It’s the endless lot of the Bernie Sanders conspiracy theorist, who never seems to get it that one needs a telescope first and a microscope last. It’s the telescope that gives the bigger picture. An important part of that big picture includes questions that conspiracy theory advocates never ask, like the previously asked question of how it is possible for thousands of people to keep a conspiracy quiet.
Another problem with Bernie conspiracy theorists is that they’re bad at history. They can’t make connections. Rotten and, in its own way, corrupt as the Weimar Republic may have been, it was infinitely superior and unquestionably to be preferred to the Third Reich. Joe Biden may not be as progressive as you want, but he will never downplay the severity of coronavirus. He will never tell you that “a lot of people are saying” there’s really nothing to global warming. He will never believe Vladimir Putin over his own intelligence agencies. He will never put an American citizen’s life at risk by excoriating them on twitter.
Let me spell it out for you in plain English. If you are a Bernie Sanders supporter and Bernie doesn’t get the nomination and you decide to retaliate by staying home and not voting, or you decide to vote for Trump instead, then you are stupid. Unfortunately, many people wouldn’t vote for a nominated Bernie no matter what. They’re stupid too. Of course, I and others like me would vote for Bernie if he should get the nomination because we aren’t stupid. You are.
You’re the kind of stupid who is surprised when a candidate who’s made a career out of demonizing Democrats doesn’t get their endorsement when they drop out. You’re the kind of stupid who thinks this bellicose, near 80 year old curmudgeon is perfectly justified in hiding his medical records from you after he’s had a heart attack. You’re the kind of stupid that prefers idiotic conspiracy theories to admitting that you are simply losing to the will of the people. But above all, you are the kind of stupid who would give a child rapist like Donald Trump four more rapacious, hateful, criminal years in office — just to show us all.
You may find this hard to take, let alone believe, but when I call you “stupid” it’s the kindest thing I can call you. Because if you’re not stupid then what you are in its place is a million times worse.