We Don’t All Rise Up The Same

If I don’t get what I wish for—
If the changes aren’t profound—
Then I’m voting for The Donald
And we’ll burn it to the ground
Yes, we’ll torch the old foundation
And set fire to the rot
And what rises from the ashes
Can’t be worse than what we’ve got

Such an outlook reeks of privilege
Though your motives may be pure
It ignores a spate of problems
You will never need endure
We could burn it down to bedrock
But the truth is, to our shame,
When we rise up from the ashes
We don’t all rise up the same

There are those for whom it matters
And it matters quite a lot!
Where a Democrat means things
That a Republican does not.
If The Donald gets elected
It’s at least four years of hell;
If you’re really not that worried
Then you’re doing pretty well

If we burn it down to nothing;
If we torch it all away,
Then the first ones to recover
Are the ones ahead today.
Go ahead and play with matches—
Just remember; it’s no game:
When we rise up from the ashes
We don’t all rise up the same

I saw one too many “Bernie or Bust” comment today. Democrats saying “I hate Trump, but I’ll never vote for Hillary” or some such. Claims that the differences between Bernie and Hillary are greater than the differences between them and The Donald.

I will happily vote for any (er, either) Democrat over any Republican. And it will actually be a vote *for* them, rather than (or, actually, in addition to) *against* whichever Republican manages to win their capture-the-flag contest. (Honestly, though, I’d like to see Bernie doing more to help those down the ticket; it would be nice to have a functional congress.)

Mind you, I could decide Bernie or Bust, and perhaps get Trump elected, and I’d do just fine. I’m a survivor–by which I mean I am a middle class white male with savings in my bank account, no major health issues, a job with a multi-year contract, and a handful of other privileged elements. Hey, I never said my “survivor” status was earned. But it is possible that my daughter, or my students, or my neighbors, or people I don’t actually personally know but who are people nonetheless, will need birth control, perhaps including abortion. Last I heard, there was a distinct difference between pretty much all Dems and all Reps on this one (at least at the presidential level). This could literally be a life-or-death issue… or we could burn it to the ground and start over–it’s not like that might hurt the weak before it hurts the strong.

I assume Bernie or Hillary (whichever) is going to pivot and support the other. It’s the all-or-nothing supporters I am concerned about. On either side (in truth, I have only seen all-or-nothing on one side, though that may very well just be the underdog dynamic).

But it’s early. And Trump’s negatives have hit historic levels. So maybe there are some good things left in the world.

So, hey, maybe let’s not burn it down? Cos the thing is… we really truly do not all rise up the same.

And that is a problem.


  1. lorn says

    Some people are simply ill suited for particular jobs. As much as I dislike Trump he is fairly effective as a carnival barker, ringleader, media celebrity. As a president, he is (Assuming the Secret Service don’t pull a Howard Hughes and shunt him off to a cloistered existence where he can watch Ice Station Zebra on an endless loop, store urine in pickle jars and grow his fingernails long.) he is a poor choice but as we saw with W incompetence can be managed and worked around by functionaries and an enterprising second in command. Between handlers, advisors, puppet masters and a dedicated staff he might not need to do much beyond looking presidential.

    Also, keep in mind that chemical controls and operant conditioning have come a long way. Inhumane and a violation of his rights, and the constitution, but it might be justified. Are we willing to risk WW3 on Trump’s composure and ability to maintain civil discourse? Kim Jong Un is a child that plays with fire. He should be spanked. He is also capable of, independent of any nuclear adrenal, destroying half of South Korea and triggering a world-war if China and the US fail to practice sufficient emotional control. How you reliably disarm a petulant two-year-old holding a loaded flare gun and sitting in the middle of an explosive factory is a perennial diplomatic problem. The good advice alway starts with an admonition to speak softly but firmly and to avoid sudden moves. I don’t know that Trump could handle that.

    I really think that the means well. It is his second or third priority. After being rich and famous. His term might end with global nuclear war but he doesn’t dream of starting that conflict. He may end up triggering it but it will be because of a misstep and miscalculation.

    On the other hand we have Cruz. He is every bit as poisonous as any mainstream Republican because they have all signed off on the party catechism. But he adds Dominionism, the implicit assumption that God is on his side, and an upbringing that trained him to think of himself as an instrument of destiny. Trump doesn’t dream of calamity, Cruz does. For him seeing it all burn is a desired turn of events. A path toward the end times when his God lets it all circle the bowl a few times to scare the puny humans before stepping in and saving the day. Or at least saving the day for the true believers. An elite group that Cruz is absolutely sure he is in.

    The difference is between an ego distracted and incompetent fireman, and an arsonist. Surround the first with highly efficient and competent staff so he can be the figurehead and it might not be too terrible. The second intends to do harm.

  2. Cuttlefish says

    If they have said “Hillary or bust”, A) I haven’t seen it, and B) of course that would be equally as bad.

    And any focus solely on the presidency without looking down the ticket to state and local races is a recipe for long term disaster. The dem establishment, in theory, exists to facilitate these races; Hillary is currently fundraising for them. If Bernie heads the ticket, of course that money still exists, and he benefits from it. And should.

  3. doublereed says

    I think most of the bernie-or-bust people have a lot of resentment toward the democratic establishment and that is probably well deserved. That may not be privilege at all.

    But mostly, I think they see the question as Hillary supporters begging them to give up on their principles. Like why are we discussing this now? Bernie’s still in the race. Oh it’s because you don’t have principles and it offends you that I do. So you’re just asking me a question to force me to not have them. The question itself is rather infuriating.

  4. Deacon Duncan says

    My concern is that, given the extremely cordial relations between Hillary and Wall Street, putting her in the White House might burn us down even worse than a Donald presidency would. We need Glass Steagall back, with even more provisions to protect the American consumer and the American economy from greedy and predatory bankers, or we’ll end up right back where we started. I trust Bernie to push for the financial and regulatory reforms we need, and I do not trust Hillary. I’m not sure she won’t support giving the banks even freer rein to loot the nations wealth for themselves, with disastrous consequences for all of us.

  5. hexidecima says

    ” W incompetence can be managed and worked around by functionaries”

    I guess that ignores all of the dead caused by this supposedly “managed incompetence”.

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