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This Week in the Narrative 129

Question: If you were an employer, if you were the boss, would you rather have an employee who did whatever you wanted, or an employee who did whatever you wanted but constantly acted out of control?

Would you rather have an employee who came to work every day, put their head down, and quietly did whatever was asked of them, or an employee who did whatever was asked of them, but showed up late, early, sometimes not at all, who antagonized other employees and loudly fought with customers?

Such is the conundrum currently faced by corporate America.

Sure, the Trump administration has passed “the most insane giveaway to the rich ever,” set records for military spending and oil production while cutting environmental regulation, and fought government-provided healthcare at every turn. Yet, the President’s belligerence continues to whip up opposition, to antagonize allies and undecideds; it continues to shine a light on the dirty gears of the great machine.

So, though Trump does what they ask, corporate America, greed as insatiable as ever, believe they can do better, believe they can find an employee who does what they ask, but quietly, without creating such a stir.

Enter Joe Biden.

This week, corporate America made a decision — to slide their chips away from the President and his allies, and towards Biden and his coalition of modest conservatives and right-wing Democrats.

As Biden officially launched yet another presidential campaign, he did so at a fundraiser hosted and attended by prominent conservative donors and corporate lobbyists. At the same time, the US Chamber of Commerce — the largest and most powerful lobbying group in the country — announced “plans to become less aligned with the Republican Party than it has been for decades,” to move support towards those who will enact their agenda more discreetly, employees whom they can more easily control.

People like Joe Biden.

It’s incredible to watch, in the build-up to the 2020 election, the three presumptive pillars of power in the country circling the wagons.

Corporate America, the current patriarch, has decided to coalesce around Joe Biden. Life under Trump is as good as its ever been for them, but still, they want more.

Meanwhile, the President was telling supporters this week that Democrats “tried for a coup,” that they “tried for an overthrow, and we caught them,” adding, “I didn’t need a gun … for that one.”

While corporate America coalesces behind a vanilla corporatist, Trump attempts to rally his supporters around dog-whistle calls to violence.

This leaves the third pillar, that is, the great many — those who don’t want to live in a fascist state run by corporations or a fascist state run by a dangerous authoritarian and his violent goons — to coalesce around another — Bernie Sanders.

It makes sense if corporate America is rallying around a career corporatist, and the violent coalescing around the deranged, that those who have felt the burn of hyper-capitalism would now ‘Feel the Bern.’ It makes sense that the great many people would coalesce around the person who has stood, worked, and fought for the great many people his entire life.

So there it is. The lines have been firmly drawn in what will surely be a spectacular battle, though hopefully not a literal war.

The options are now clear — corporate fascism, authoritarian corporate fascism, or democratic socialism.

Almost time to choose …

Quote of the Week:

Written by Nigel Clarke

Writer and notorious vagabond. From the frozen north. Follow Nigel on Twitter @Nig_Clarke.

Nigel Clarke is a Writer for Progressive Army.

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