The Free China Post has for a long time gave measured and critical praise for Fareed Zakaria for his intellectualization of the American political discourse, for covering crucial and oft-neglected topics on his mainstream show, on the most powerful American television news network in the world, and for his pragmatism and deep thinking.
On his show this week, however, he made one of the most appallingly shallow and crude editorials that he has perhaps ever produced.
In his segment this week, he took a detailed look as Sanders’ energy proposals and platform, and derided Bernie Sanders as unrealistic, focusing on removing frighteningly dangerous and scientifically questionable energy practices, such as hydraulic fracturing for shale gas, and the endless proliferation of nuclear power when America, in 2020, still has no permanent place for waste storage.
What was most cringeworthy was that for the massive pass he gives regarding “pragmatism” to other politicians, in this editorial, he chose to take every single one of Bernie Sanders’ policy planks literally, as non-negotiable law, as though Sanders has the presidential authority to miraculously enact every single aspect of his plans, and carry them out through 2030, the end point of his energy goals, several years after his potential second term would even be completed. For a journalist who is as steeped in political knowledge and experience as Fareed Zakaria is, this is shill wilful ignorance, and to what end?
No president, even Trump, can muster such authority without suffering congressional backlash, a deluge of lawsuits, and the political reality of getting oneself reelected only 3 years and 10 months after initially taking office.
It is a preposterous and intellectually dishonest argument to make that even 50% of his policy planks will be enacted as is; these are starting points, negotiating positions, insurmountable goals, yet noble aims that America should strive for instead of continuing the status quo of continuously electing plutocrats and elites to continue their catastrophic mismanagement of the economy, environment, and social system to the dysfunctional precipice that Fareed and his Davos friends have left the world at in 2020.
For Zakaria to be so wrong either shows he is dangerously ignorant for a person tasked with informing the American people, or he is aware of these facts that take mere minutes to find via internet search, and he harbors malice for Bernie.
Fareed makes this irrationality all too clear when he suggests that a Bernie win in 2020 would be worse for the world than a Trump win, setting himself up as a status quo globalist who would rather continue the dismantling of our constitutional order and a perpetuation of the neo-liberal power orgy that has left the world less democratic, more unequal, and irreparably less stable than it has been since the end of the cold war. Fareed Zakaria has shown his cards, he is a multimillionaire metropolitan elite, of the same class and social aim as the DNC that lost America to Donald Trump through their arrogance and fundamental misunderstanding of the world order amidst demands for equitable governance.
The globalists have shattered social stability, and if this class of people does not want to rectify the state of America, to adjust the status quo, if they would rather hold on to their power and the continuity of the current order than try to look for solutions, then perhaps the Democratic victory will proceed without them and will look quite different this time. The Sanders coalition is made up of working class people from across America, from both parties, and this is borne out in the data. A Sanders administration, unsupported by liberal elites, will no longer tethered to the gears of power that the elites continue to run. In this case, that class will truly be alienated, and thus a social war may begin.
Zakaria in a later segment of his weekly show, makes a contradictory argument to further argue against Sanders’ candidacy. He begins by calling for a fresh, exciting candidate who can rev up the democratic base before claiming that all of the “young” candidates are only supported by the old and pro-status quo elements of the Democratic party, before going on to claim that Bernard’s ideas are too far left of the US populace to make him electable, a fraudulent term. For a journalist with the power of CNN behind him, one would think he would have access to the plethora of polls flying directly in the face of his narrative which show overwhelmingly, the vast majority, upwards of 70% of the total of more than 50 national polls taken since late 2019, all show Sanders defeating Trump in a matchup.
Further, his claims about the relative “leftism” of Sanders’ policy platform is utterly false, with the vast majority of his primary proposals the a popularly established baseline for ideal politics, across the entire political spectrum.
We can look to Medicare for all, almost certainly the policy Sanders is most known for. According to polling data 70 percent of Americans are in favor of national health care. There are even polls where a majority of Republicans support the policy. (https://thehill.com/hilltv/what-americas-thinking/412545-70-percent-of-americans-support-medicare-for-all-health-care)
Another example of this is the minimum wage. According to a Hill-HarrisX poll (https://www.google.com/amp/s/thehill.com/hilltv/what-americas-thinking/426780-poll-a-majority-of-voters-want-a-15-minimum-wage%3famp) 55 percent of registered voters are in favor of increasing the the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour, and even the majority of Republican voters are in favor of increasing it.
Fareed wants an energizing Democratic leader, and “big-tent” politics, there is no better choice; his positions are overwhelmingly popular with working class people from both parties and across the entire United States.
There are a certainly a handful ideas that don’t hold majority support, as with all politicians, but these are few and far between, and on his signature proposals, he is not only more representative of the American people than are the CNN hosts who lambast him, he is closer in line with scientists, policy experts, and sociologists who suggest that America take action on inequality, climate change, and healthcare than any other politician in America. One must simply look to how many of Sanders’ Democratic opponents have tried to copy his ideas, most obvious of these being Medicare for all, for which watered down versions have appeared in almost all of the Democratic candidates platform, with similar, false, promises made by Trump, too, in his 2016 candidacy.
The elite class has chosen to ignore the policy data, they ignore the election statistics, they ignore the econometric and environmental science, and take a hard-nosed stand against the looming symbol of the end of their reign.
In summation, Fareed Zakaria, and many hosts and anchors in the mainstream media are frightened by Bernie Sanders; they fear for their 401k, they fear for their tax rates, but most of all, they fear the loss of influence from the elite to a popular movement that puts an ideologically iron leader against the powers that be, the empowered elite, the upper crust. They have begun to devolve into fear mongering, propaganda, and intellectual dishonesty, yet there is still a chance for them to regain their dignity and accept the will of the people, as they did when Donald J. Trump managed to win the White House the last time that America listened to CNN’s lectures about “electability,” “populism,” and “rationality” in 2016. They cement their place in history, though, when they suggest that four more years of Donald Trump’s anti-American treason would be preferable to giving up their throne.
Ari B. and Jordan F.