By Brian Dann
Politicians are scum. All politicians lie. All politicians will do or say whatever they have to to get elected. You can not trust any politician, especially one running for President! For the most part I agree with this. For the most part, in most elections, you are voting for the lessor of the evils because let’s face it they all make big promises, they all say whatever they have to, to get elected, and because our system is so messed up, so corrupt, nothing ever changes...and you can’t trust any of them!
Bernie Sanders is a politician. I like to refer to Senator Sanders as iBernie. Let me explain why. Actually “Why” is the reason I refer to Bernie Sanders as iBernie. You see iBernie and Apple have a lot in common. People are loyal to Apple at often a seemingly incomprehensible, irrational level. It almost does not matter what Apple makes, because Apple loyalists will shell out hard earned cash for whatever it is. It does not even have to be the best product in its class, Apple consumers will stand in line for hours to get it. They will scrap a perfectly functional iPhone to have the latest and greatest model. They will wait for the Apple Watch even though Motorola had an Android smartwatch available months before the Apple Watch came out. They will spend more for an iBook that is not nearly as powerful as an HP laptop at a lower price and could care less about the technical specifications of the item because they don't buy Apple for the features, they buy it for the “Why”. People are loyal to Apple because of why Apple started, why Apple exists, because of Apple’s reason for being, because of their “Why.” We believe that, just like Apple, we “Think Different.” Apple is a movement, a philosophy. It’s creative, it’s counter culture, it’s the artists, and the thinkers. It’s a lifestyle, a cult. IBM was business. Apple was life. Apple has been guided by their “Why”, and endures because if it, and we drink the Apple koolaid to be a part of it, to be a part of their “Why.” We believe in Apple.
Bernie Sanders, like Apple, has a “Why” and it’s not a Democratic “Why” or a Republican “Why.” It’s an iBernie “Why.” And what sets iBernie apart from all the other politicians out there is that long before iBernie decided to run for President, long before iBernie was a Senator, iBernie had been preaching the same message that we all hear over and over again today. He hasn’t changed his message with the times or changed to get elected. He has always preached the same common sense solutions to real issues that in the short term were never popular with the ultra wealthy or the corporations, but would would bring prosperity to the average working American and would make our country greater in the long run...if only people would listen, if only other politicians would get on board, if only we could all start to “Think Different,” if only people bought in to iBernie’s “Why.”
I became aware of iBernie shortly after President Obama took office. For years, every Friday, Thom Hartmann’s afternoon radio show became “Brunch with Bernie.” Senator Bernie Sanders would call in and take questions from anyone who could get through. He would address any question that someone might have regardless of their political affiliation. He never came off fake or condescending. He listened and was gracious and gave commonsense answers usually to the same problems that we are facing today, unemployment, immigration, rising healthcare costs, the shrinking middle class, corporations not paying their fair share of taxes, campaign finance, a woman's right to choose, a right to fair pay in the workplace, discrimination, terrorism, our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, climate change, and so on...and his answers were logical, they made sense, and when he was done you wished every politician thought like iBernie, that every politician cared more about doing what was right for the country, that every politician would care more about what was necessary to fix our problems then defending their “party” line. You wished that every politician would work with the other side to make all of our lives better, regardless if it got them re-elected or not. You wished that every politician represented us instead of who financed their re-election campaign. And you never imagined that this man, who seemed way to caring, way to empathetic, way to common sense, way to Brooklyn and way to honest, would ever run for President...but you always wished he would.
Most politicians are fake and dishonest. They will change their views each time there is a change in the polls. I don’t say this because I would like to see iBernie become our next president, I say this simply because it is true. Bernie Sanders is an honest politician. His “Why” is strong. His “Why” is consistent, and his “Why” has never changed since the day he ran for mayor of Burlington, Vermont. I unlike many, was aware of the following that iBernie had on the day he announced his bid for President of the United States. And while all the media was saying that this man could never beat Hillary Clinton, I was thinking to myself, the same thing I thought the day Senator Barack Obama announced his candidacy on February 10th 2007. “I am looking at our next President of the United States.” I knew that this was going to be something that the Clintons never saw coming and that if iBernie stayed true to the message that he had been preaching for the past 35 years, a Clinton sure thing would no longer be. So for me, iBernie almost tying Hillary in Iowa and beating her in a landslide in New Hampshire came as no surprise. What it did do was to speak to the intensely passionate following that has the real potential to send iBernie to the White House. iBernie is not your typical presidential candidate. He looks like your butcher, not your President, and unlike the train wreck that is Donald Trump, he has solutions, solutions that no matter what the naysayers say, will work. Even his rival, who thought she was a sure thing, has not come out to say that Single Payer Health Care, or Free College Tuition for public universities, will not work, because she knows they will. She has only said, it can not pass. And while it may be true that Single Payer Health Insurance, a program that alone could save our economy and revolutionize not only healthcare but also raise our level of discretionary spending, or Free College Tuition, which would raise the level of young people's access to higher education and eliminate the mountain of debt they leave school with, would almost have no chance of getting through a republican congress today, we can not simply sit back and accept defeat before we have even tried. Change, progress, revolution does not happen overnight and if we start now, one day these things will become a reality. Clinton’s willingness to settle for what is easy, to settle for the status quo, to simply say that it's just too hard so why even try, to give up before we have even started, to refuse to fight for what we need and instead settle for what we can get, is why iBernie is the only choice if we ever want any hope of an America that works for all the people not just the 1%. If Hillary Clinton in the ‘80’s, as first lady didn’t fight for health care reform, it would not have happened in 2009. If Harvey Milk didn't fight in the ‘70’s to become the first gay politician, we wouldn't have gay marriage today. If Rosa Parks didn’t fight for that seat on the bus, and Martin Luther King didn't march on Selma, we would never would have seen a change years later in our civil rights. For change to happen we have to make it happen. And that change can not be banning all muslims or building a wall. Change must be human and passionate, inclusive and tolerant. And whether or not iBernie’s programs can pass today, the fight for them has to happen so that they can pass someday. We are not voting for a man so much as we are voting for his “Why,” a “Why” that’s become our “Why.” Because just like Apple, just like iBernie, we are “...the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes... the ones who see things differently -- they're not fond of rules... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can't do is ignore them because they change things... they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.” - Steve Jobs
"Start with Why" by Simon Sinek