Which Side Are They On?

Just as interesting as the alliances which have formed behind the Sanders campaign are those of the opposition. It should surprise no one that the technocratic liberal intelligencia (Krugman, Yglesias, Klein, etc.) is hostile. Their role has always been to police the boundaries of the left agenda to insure that they remain within limits acceptable to corporate and financial elites. More revealing is significant elements of what remains of the self described Marxist/Leninist left aligning with them in their attempts to undermine and suppress Sanders. But this alliance shouldn’t be a surprise either. Noam famously demonstrated a while back that the superficial differences in objectives masked fundamental similarlities in outlook, as these were expressed by, for example, the iconic liberal technocrat, Robert McNamara:

QUESTION: Long before McNamara wrote this book you had compared him to Lenin. What did you mean by that?

CHOMSKY: I compared some passages of articles of his in the late 1960s, speeches, on management and the necessity of management, how a well-managed society controlled from above was the ultimate in freedom. The reason is if you have really good management and everything’s under control and people are told what to do, under those conditions, he said, man can maximize his potential. I just compared that with standard Leninist views on vanguard parties, which are about the same. About the only difference is that McNamara brought God in, and I suppose Lenin didn’t bring God in. He brought Marx in.

Perhaps the most significant role of the Sanders campaign is in cutting through the fog of mystification to reveal the naked class interests and underlying political consciousness of those who are opposing it, (e.g. Counterpunch aligning with The New Republic, the ISO with the DNC, Arun Gupta with Debby Wasserman Schultz etc.) Same goes for those supporting it, though that’s a more complicated story.

It’s a good time to be alive. Well, in some ways, at least.

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