Bern or Heartburn? A Democratic Dilemma

UPDATE: It’s interesting that the more moderate “also-rans” (Buttigieg and Klobuchar) are apparently being pushed by the Democratic Party machine into toeing the line by backing out of the race and throwing their weight toward Biden as a way to stymie Sanders and avoid a bloody fight on the Convention floor.

Original Post:

On the road to the Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee on July 13-16, US Senator Bernie Sanders seems to be engineering a repeat of his 2016 performance, in which he went into the National Convention with a strong chance to win and came out defeated by high-stakes Establishment tinkering. This time the Democratic kingmakers have the same dilemma: how to gracefully pinch off the looming nomination of a popular Socialist who is almost certainly much too Far Left to make a strong showing against Donald Trump in the November Presidential Election. I decided to take out my Kipperkarten deck to ask what the Party might try to do about the situation this time. I used the traditional 3×3 square with no pre-selected  focus card. Since neither “Main Person” card appeared in the layout, I’m assuming that the center card takes on the role of Significator. I’m using Stella Waldvogel’s “Kipperkarten Primer” as the interpretive starting-point for this reading.


For those unfamiliar with the Kipper deck, the cards reading from the top-left corner to the bottom-right corner are:

19. “A Death” – A “deadly” event; an ending.
16. “His Thoughts” – What the person you are interested in  (here it’s the Democratic leadership) is thinking.
4. “Meeting” – getting together (most likely refers to the upcoming Convention, upon which the leaders’ thoughts are focused).
29. “Prison” – Being trapped in a situation; bad luck; isolation; a blockade; a family secret may be revealed.
8. “False Person” – At its mildest, a “wrong” or “false step;” at its worst, outright deceit; bad decision, deviousness, things that are hidden. (This is the “focus” card of the spread; in 2016 its function would have been represented by Hillary Clinton and her Establishment proponents who may have sabotaged Sanders).
20. “House” – Literally, a “house” but in this scenario I’m more inclined to read it as “the establishment” and the “seat” of the operation of the “False Person.”
30. “Magistrate” – Disagreements, problems, and stress, but also having someone to go to for resolution; decision. (May signify the role of the Convention CEO and DNC Chairman in the proceedings.)
23. “Court” – Decisions, public affairs, public building; neutral or unpleasant – literal court, tax office, negotiations, rattling cages, etc.
3. “Marriage Card” –  Usually indicates relationships, bonds, or friendships. (Here it suggests negotiated backroom deals between like-minded Party operatives.)


Everything here seems to point toward a “brokered convention,” which is a presidential nominating convention that fails to nominate a candidate on the first ballot because no candidate gets the votes of more than half the delegates. With Sanders potentially retaining the level of popularity he currently enjoys, it could take some mighty Machiavellian arm-twisting by Democratic bigwigs to head off a Sanders first-ballot win (which is apparently what happened in 2016). All indications are that they can’t afford to let Sanders walk away with the nomination.

In the top row, the “death” of Bernie Sanders’ candidacy appears to be on the minds of the Party leadership, with the implication that their concerns could persist all the way to the Convention before the situation is resolved. (Another take would be that they are worried about the “death” of Democratic chances in November if Sanders is nominated.)

The middle row looks like there will be an attempt to “bar the gate” against Sanders through Establishment maneuvering to isolate him.

The bottom row seems to throw the burden on Convention officials to strike a deal that could possibly shake the foundations of the Party.

The left column makes it apparent that these officials already have their “marching orders:” remove Sanders from contention through some kind of procedural strategy.

The middle column makes me think that the leadership will employ whatever tactics are  necessary to force their will on the situation.

The right column implies that the more moderate “Old Guard” will close ranks behind the leadership in this effort.

The first diagonal, Death + False Person + Marriage Card, has me convinced that “the fix is in” against Sanders once again.

The second diagonal, Magistrate + False Person + Meeting, almost surely means that they are all in it together and on the same page when it comes to stonewalling Sanders.

The four corners, Death, Meeting, Marriage, Magistrate, suggest that the first order of business will be how to administratively derail Sanders without appearing to have railroaded him.

The “internal cross,” His Thoughts, House, False Person, Prison, Court, makes the point that no-one involved has any illusions about what the mission is; in other words, nothing will have changed since 2016.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s