Mayor Peter and the Wolf

Mayor Peter and the Wolf
© Getty

In “Peter and the Wolf,” Prokofiev’s Russian “symphonic fairy tale for children,” Peter, “a young Soviet pioneer,” tries to protect a little duck from a prowling wolf. In the end, the naive duck gets eaten by the wolf, and Peter captures the wolf and takes him to the People’s Zoo.  

In the tragic opera that is the Democratic presidential primary season, reality following the New Hampshire primary reflects fiction as young Peter is hot on the wolf's tail, hoping to catch him, stuff him and put him in the Democrats’ political museum. 

Let there be little doubt that Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersDemocratic senators call on domestic airlines to issue cash refunds for travelers Sanders still sees 'narrow path' to Democratic presidential nomination Tenants call on lawmakers to pass rent freezes MORE (I-Vt.) is a dangerous wolf, fully dedicated to a socialist state in which the government controls all capital and factors of production. We know this because he has said it over and over again. He chose the Soviet Union for his honeymoon when it was seriously communist and hell-bent on ruling the world. He described the beauty of the Moscow subway system, built by slave labor from Joseph Stalin’s political prisoner archipelago. We know he wants the government to take over the health care system, the energy sector and financial sector because he has said so. With that momentum, the state would need to take over all factors of production and communication. 

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People repeatedly ask the crazy question, “How would Bernie pay for it?” He would never pay for it. It’s the wrong question. The government would pay doctors and hospitals as little as it chooses to — everyone, except the ruling class, is leveled down, not up, in this system of “fairness.” Of course, if doctors chose not to do the “people’s work,” they might need “re-education,” as some on the Sanders team reportedly have said. Energy, banking, manufacturing would follow the same pattern. “Wealth taxes” would destroy the management/entrepreneurial class and collapse productivity and the economy along with national security and standard of living. Sanders’s team has made clear that they’re ready to start on day one. After all, the playbook has been around for a hundred years. 

As with all of these systems, people quickly come to realize the terrible mistake they’ve made and seriously resist. The only question is whether Sanders could put in place a police state to enforce his revolution. There has been no working model of his plan without a force to crush broad opposition. Watching the behavior of the masked left-wing thugs of Antifa, illegal immigrants with criminal records in “sanctuary cities,” and voting felons in many “progressive” states should leave little doubt about the army of volunteers lining up for those “jobs.”

One good question is, who is the sitting duck that gets eaten by the wolf? That’s pretty obvious. Sanders has targeted his message directly at upper middle-class white youths and liberals, largely in the Northeast and West. They are young and think they are smart, want their turn to run things, and are too impatient to learn practical lessons of life. They have no idea how America has built and runs the most dynamic economy in history. They have no idea that America has built the most complete “social justice” and civil rights system in history and is the most generous and fair system anywhere, raising tens of millions of people out of poverty over the past 50 years. They’re simply the latest victims of that age-old recipe for Marxist political power: “Things are unfair and we can fix it.” They also know so little about history that they don’t understand that revolutions consume their own. Northeast and Western “liberals” and “intellectuals” will be the most shocked — and first to be crushed — by such a revolution, although nearly everyone else will follow quickly. 

Which brings us to Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegReuters poll finds Sanders cutting Biden national lead to single digits Biden says he'll adopt plans from Sanders, Warren Buttigieg guest-hosts for Jimmy Kimmel: 'I've got nothing else going on' MORE, the former South Bend, Ind., mayor, a calm, attractive guy whom no one knows anything about. Is he the savior who captures the wolf? Or, with life’s predictable duality, is Peter the carefully disguised wolf, waiting to eat Little Blue-State Riding Hood, leaving only a mangled metaphor behind?

This much we know: Mayor Pete grew up at a dinner table, listening to his father, who was president of the International Gramsci Society, named after a famous 20th century communist intellectual dedicated to overthrowing the “hegemony” of the cultural elite, i.e., bankers, media, entrepreneurs, corporate managers, wealthy citizens. Pete Buttigieg wrote admiringly of Bernie Sanders and his “uncynical” strength in taking on the establishment. Buttigieg advances “moderate,” “reasonable,” two-step, “phased” approaches to “Medicare for All,” a Green New Deal, and other Sanders objectives — he’s younger and patient, but the results may be very similar. 

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Pete Buttigieg wants to upend the Constitution by crushing federalism in the Electoral College with large, liberal-state dominance. He wants to “restructure” the Supreme Court into a powerful political tool. He promotes his personal persecution and unfairness in his origin story (denied by those who knew him, but good enough for the cover of Time magazine, now apparently reserved for those with claimed grievances).

America must avoid another era of false Joseph McCarthy-like accusations of communism. But, while Sanders’s views are clear and dangerous to America, Buttigieg is largely unknown but gaining political strength, and that certainly needs a much closer scrutiny.

Grady Means is a writer (GradyMeans.com) and former corporate strategy consultant. He served in the White House as a policy assistant to Vice President Nelson Rockefeller. Follow him on Twitter @GradyMeans.