In the end, Gorbachev presided over the collapse of a system he believed in. When the Berlin Wall fell and the captive Soviet Republics returned to independence, Gorbachev refused to crush them militarily. Perhaps he couldn’t. Perhaps he didn’t want to.

Whatever the reason, the collapse was mostly orderly, not bloody.

As a young man, he’d been inspired by Krushchev, a leader who’s soaring rhetoric never honestly reflected his Trumpian ego.

Unlike Gorbachev, the other apparatchiks were practical men, with no sentimentality. They knew they ruled a dictatorship. But Gorbachev actually believed in the Soviet system and cared about the people. He was an affable man, who loved his wife and was—perhaps naively—an idealist. As a young man, he’d been inspired by Krushchev, a leader who’s soaring rhetoric never honestly reflected his Trumpian ego.

The Democrats are Gorbachev. They are apparatchiks who sometimes believe their own rhetoric. They want to see themselves as the good guys (who doesn’t?) even as they go about their often unsavory business.

The resistance to Trump is bigger than advertised. It’s also a resistance to capitalism which steals healthcare and pensions and destroys the planet itself. The Democrats are not the good guys, but they also won’t bring out the big guns when the collapse of capitalism—like the earlier collapse of communism—comes.

Yes, the Democratic Party, like the GOP, is a corporate-funded party. Yes, they start and continue wars and kill foreigners with impunity—like the GOP. And yes, they clearly favor Wall Street and shortchange Main Street.

I’ve left the Democratic Party. I wanted to send a message—I don’t support their anti-democratic ways or their tepid commitment to helping the American people.

But most Democrats genuinely cringe at gun massacres. They are worried about people dying because they can’t get healthcare. They feel bad when old people with no pensions and insufficient Social Security go homeless.

The Democrats can be cruel but they aren’t without conscience. The same cannot be said for the GOP.

Democrats don’t do enough to help but they feel bad about it sometimes. And they won’t shoot their brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, daughters or sons on that day when the people stand up and say “no.” And that day is coming.

I’ve left the Democratic Party. I wanted to send a message—I don’t support their anti-democratic ways or their tepid commitment to helping the American people. I know who funds them, and who they represent and I disapprove. Nonetheless, I’m voting the straight Democratic ticket in November. The reason? I want this cruel failing economic/political system to come to an end with a whimper, not a bang.

The Democrats, like Gorbachev, won’t shoot.

Essays Why I’m Voting for “Gorbachev”