And, hell, let's just be honest: All this policy talk is just a way to pass the time between now and the election. It doesn't matter how strong Bernie Sanders's single-payer health care plan is — it's not going to pass, just like Donald Trump isn't going to get Mexico to pay for a wall and Hillary Clinton isn't going to get universal pre-K past a Republican Congress and Ted Cruz isn't going to set up a value-added tax.
It's a mighty cynical take. I have often wondered about Senator Sanders's ticket. He clearly doesn't back down from his aspirational bid of a revolution. As Hillary's campaign continues to pound him on realism though, he continues to dig further in.
That confuses me. However, this was an interesting point-of-view.
A democratic polity does not elect a technocrat-in-chief, but politicians whose role is to define priorities that must later be translated into well-crafted policy details. Paul Ryan’s various budgets haven’t been wrong because they require giant magic asterices to make the numbers add up. They have been wrong because the interests and values Paul Ryan represents are wrong. The magic asterices don’t reflect dumb mistakes, but smart politics. The problems of our polity do not arise because one faction or another is too stupid to do high quality science. If your interests are the interests of the fossil fuel industry, and you are unwilling or unable to transcend the narrowness of those interests, then confusing the public about the science of climate change is a mark of intelligence, not stupidity. Being smart is great. You may be proud of your GRE scores, your PhD, your Nobel Prize even. And deservedly! But raw intellect is not scarce, and no faction holds anywhere near a monopoly.
The idea that a presidential bid is one of a cohesive vision puts Bernie's tactics in perspective.