UPDATE: I’m listening to this NPR podcast on Huey Long vs. The Media.
I get irritated when Bernie Sanders is compared to Huey Long who would have beaten Joe Biden like a drum and won his primary and easily defeated Trump in a landslide.
Woke Bernie blew his chance to win the 2020 Democratic primary by trying to appeal to Elizabeth Warren wine track voters. He was too scared to run on Universal Basic Income. He never proposed anything nearly as radical as a wealth cap to crush the oligarchy. He never organized anything like Huey Long’s Share Our Wealth societies. He never had a simple message that resonated like “Every Man a King.”
Donald Trump was right about Bernie being weak. He let BLM activists come on stage, push him around and take the microphone from him. He submitted to the Democrats and endorsed Hillary Clinton after she stole the nomination from him in the 2016 election. He submitted gracefully again when the Democratic establishment fixed the primaries to stop him in the 2020 election. Contrast Bernie Sanders with Huey Long who “dynamited” his enemies and destroyed all resistance to his rule in Louisiana. Huey Long wasn’t stupid enough to run as a “democratic socialist” and wasn’t hobbled by violent middle class lefties arguing over ideology and rioting, creating chaos and alienating moderates with bizarre shit like the “progressive stack.” Huey Long also understood the theatrical side of politics which Trump used to great effect to create his cult of personality. He called himself the “Kingfish” and even had his own song.
Trump and Huey Long intuitively understood that the ordinary man wants to see a larger than life leader. Huey Long dressed in a white suit like Sen. James Vardaman the Great White Chief of Mississippi. Long also learned from Gov. Jeff Davis of Arkansas the importance of simple messaging. Bernie’s signature idea of free college was also Huey Long’s idea. It was part of his populist Share Our Wealth program. Progressives have always coopted, screwed up and taken credit for populist ideas.