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Take 3 Doses of Reality

December 19, 2016

Most important, a clip of Bernie talking with Trump voters, in a town hall-type setting in Wisconsin. Maybe there’s still hope, with this kind of political honesty and dialogue. The clip is embedded in an excellent essay on blocking T, by Frank Vyan Walton in Daily Kos, and so is a clip of a Keith Olberman (which spell checks as Doberman) exploration of T’s mental qualifications for the presidency.

The entire Kenosha County, Wisconsin, conversation, emphasizing T voters and Bernie (who won the county and the state in the Dem primary, so these voters already knew him) is very much worth the minutes. The T voters tell us a lot (starting 11 minutes in). T won this county by 237 votes.

The 55-minute film (youtube) begins with 11 minutes of Chris Hayes interviewing Bernie (with the town hall audience), then it gives a 4-minute history of employment in Kenosha, and then the conversation with the voters.

One motif that I especially noticed is the sense on the part of the voters that nobody has been listening to them—Bernie, of course, is an exceptionally good listener—and that they have not had a say in the national politics that has influenced their lives. As one man puts it, as a positive about T: he opened a dialogue. In my archetypal sense, he engaged them in a conversation, or at least they felt like he did. He was lying to them, of course, especially about caring about their lives.

Another striking motif, to my mind, is the depth of the need for change, that these voters feel, as in, they voted for T “just because they wanted something different.” Hillman suggests, about suicide, that sometimes the soul aches for change so profoundly that the person literalizes instead of creatively imagining and imaging. That’s how strong the need for change can be. I think that in this case the persons, collectively (that’s campaign politics), allowed their imaginations to be captured by a false but strongly seductive image, and then their last hope was to gamble that the image might be true.

I’m thinking that the point now is how to effectively offer all working class persons and families, throughout the country, an actual opportunity to vote for nourishing, healing change in their lives.  True conversations, images, and their stories writ large.

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