Friday March 6 2020

The delegate count is now 664 to Biden 573 to Sanders. A difference of 91. Still counting in California. Biden creeping up.

Larry Hendel and Joe Berry, coordinating the Labor for Bernie network for Northern California.
Larry Hendel and Joe Berry are cordinating the Northern California Labor for Bernie (L4B) network; so far about 5 messages gone out, list still getting tuned up but responses coming in

The COVID-19 virus, we are told, will eventually reach everyone. The best website information is at:

And today, in case anyone was wondering if we do or don’t need a full-on national health plan and a national health service, a judge in Texas struck down Obamacare in its entirety, including coverage for preexisting conditions and for children under 26.

Happy Birthday

A lively birthday dinner for our neighbor, with a guest list averaging age 70, myself being on the upper end. Twelve people eating and drinking and talking. Some Bernie supporters, some Warren supporters, perhaps a Biden supporter here or there — I can’t tell, because not everyone confessed to whom they voted or campaigned for.

Our host spoke of the concept “least harm,” meaning that you would support the person who would be likely to do yourself and your community the least harm. Biden would be that candidate; a stretch of smooth road ahead, at least for a while.

For someone my age, who may or may not be around to see a second term of the new president, that might be an attractive choice. “He would get me through to 80 years old and that’s enough,” I might say. After that, let whatever happens happen.

However, given the climate crisis and all the other crises that are aspects of that, I see that no matter who is elected — Trump, Bernie, or Biden – we will be moving steadily into a deepening conflict over how to manage our communities. So instead of a road that leads to the single destination of the November election, I see a sequence of landmarks on a road that goes beyond that. First, the rest of the primaries; then the convention; then, no matter who the candidate is, the election; then the inauguration and then the next term beyond that. Each of these changes the context for the next landmark. All of these, no matter who wins the primaries and becomes the candidate, take place in this landscape of fallout from the climate crisis (wildfires, storms, pandemics, drought here in California, hurricanes like the F-4 one on Super Tuesday in Tennessee that killed 18 people) but also energetic grassroots struggle by the people who are currently involved in the Bernie campaign and who are also committed to a different kind of country.

So Biden becoming the candidate won’t stop the movement that supports Bernie from continuing to organize and push forward. Electing Biden won’t mean buying a few miles of straight road; it will just mean that the work will continue at the bottom, at the grassroots level. This will look like conflict, if the massive teacher strikes of 2018-19 looked like conflict. The 1000 Grandmothers blocking a street to protest fossil fuel probably looks like conflict. I guess the firing of 54 grad student employees at UC Santa Cruz looks like conflict, too. It certainly feels like conflict to them. But the version of conflict carried on by the right involves not only legal measures (like knocking down Obamacare) but also guns, cars being driven into crowds, etc. To say nothing of putting children in cages on the border. So all this will escalate.

Published by helenaworthen

Labor educator, retired from University of Illinois, taught at TDT University in Ho Chi Minh City in the Faculty of Trade Unions and Labor Relations. Co-author with Joe Berry of Power Despite Precarity: Strategies for the contingent faculty movement in higher education, forthcoming (August 2021) from Pluto Press.

4 thoughts on “Friday March 6 2020

  1. I voted for Bernie here in Illinois. It was an early vote so they are still tabulating. I’m hoping for the best!

  2. ““He would get me through to 80 years old and that’s enough,” I might say. After that, let whatever happens happen.”
    Jeez, Helena. You’re giving me less than 4 months to live! Is that a little ageism showing or despair?

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