Letter: Sanders a person of conscience and humility

Sanders a person of conscience and humility

Editor is the Reformer:

Here is a curious thing. We speak about left of center, right of center, as if there was a constant, eternal point of reference in politics. It's all relative, of course. Ronald Reagan perfected the art of moving the center by dragging one end way out beyond all reason — remember the Evil Empire? And that other Star Wars? So that when he compromised, he ended up far to the right of where the right used to be and seemed almost moderate. A man who fired all of the air traffic controllers one day.

Bernie Sanders is constantly measured against this ephemeral scale, associated with this or that historical crackpot movement, called an outsider in an attempt to lump him in with the Trumps of the world. But he is actually something the media are not used to: a person of conscience and humility. No wonder they are having a hard time positioning him. It was the same with Ralph Nader. But they can't make a spoiler out of a leading candidate.

Authenticity doesn't slide around the way the political "center" does, just because you start hauling one of the ends off to the edge of the world. It's got more gravitational pull. But establishment politicians do. So here comes Bernie, explaining clearly and patiently why we don't have what the Koch brothers spend so much money telling us we can't have, and if Clinton says a word, it looks like squirming. And it's as if Bernie isn't even running: the deep human values of fairness and justice and compassion are running, and they are running way out in front of HRC. He occupies the center, and she knows it. She is not going to argue against all of our most cherished principles. So all she can do is keep insisting that she can bring about Bernie's vision better than he can.

Peter Barus, Whittingham, Feb. 13


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