"But Goethe tells us in his greatest poem that Faust lost the liberty of his soul when he said to the passing moment: 'Stay, thou art so fair.' And our liberty, too, is endangered if we pause for the passing moment, if we rest on our achievements, if we resist the pace of progress. For time and the world do not stand still. Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future."

— John F. Kennedy, 1963

For the first time in my life, I am contemplating voting for a Democrat in Alabama's Super Tuesday 2024 presidential primary. This consideration stems not from a change in my political beliefs, but from a desire for new perspectives to challenge America’s deeply ingrained political status quo.

America could certainly benefit from more upsets and unexpected victories by underdogs seeking to break free from its ostentatiously corrupt ruling class. The 2016 election of Donald Trump was one such unprecedented shakeup for an establishment blinded by its own arrogance. Trump's innovative use of social media platforms to bypass the corporate press hinted at a promising future for free and transparent political debate.

Trump didn’t sell himself to the masses like a nightly news, prepackaged television ad for pharmaceutical drugs. He didn’t have to. Trump could now sell himself directly to the people in his tweets and rallies – and always in his own voice. His unfiltered tweets and rally speeches connected with the masses, circumventing traditional media channels and debunking the political elites' finely crafted propaganda.

Ever since that 2016 upset, the political and media landscapes have been irreversibly altered.

The establishment empire struck back in 2020, going to extraordinary measures to steal the election fair and square. Then, their subsequent calls for censorship, deplatforming, and political lawfare only increased after the Jan. 6th, 2021 riots, culminating in an unprecedented indictment of Trump by the Biden Department of Justice.

Their relentless pursuit of Trump only underscores their insecurity. Their worst fear – that Trump was just the spark igniting a populist revolt against the Washington uniparty – seems to manifest itself every day. Driven by the tumultuous media revolution and a growing generational distrust in America’s decaying ruling institutions, new challengers to the political status quo continue to emerge.

The establishment has already started their preemptive strikes against a certain Democratic candidate for the presidency – Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. (RFK Jr.) – labeling him a kooky conspiracy theorist and a dark agent of misinformation, even censoring him outright.

“It is unclear what part of the 95-minute podcast was found to have violated YouTube’s terms of service that led to the video’s removal,” Newsweek reports of a recently removed RFK Jr. interview with Canadian author and speaker Jordan Peterson.

Of course, that didn’t stop Newsweek from speculating that the violations might have been RFK’s comments on transgender teens. Fortunately, the full interview is still available on Twitter, thanks to Elon Musk, so allow me to venture my own guess as to why the interview was removed.

After Peterson asked about potential effects of new media on the 2024 campaign cycle, RFK Jr. alluded to his uncle, John F. Kennedy, using the new technology of television to his full advantage to defeat Nixon in 1960. RFK Jr. offered this bold prediction:

This year is going to be the political campaign that will be decided on by podcasts and particularly because I think the podcasts have the capacity this election for reaching people and allowing, you know, sort of dissident and insurgent candidates like myself to end run the corporate media monolith.

This prospect is precisely what the establishment fears: a political outsider communicating directly with the American people, unfiltered and uninfluenced. The advent of internet podcasts has disrupted longstanding corporate control over public opinion, and while it may be premature to predict that podcasts will decide the next presidential election, there is hope.

There are many reasons one might support RFK Jr.’s candidacy, but his full embrace of new media, even in the face of corporate press censorship, is making me consider throwing my vote his way.

I can only wonder how many of my fellow Alabamians (including populist conservatives) feel like me: politically homeless, disgusted with the manufactured news cycle, and starving to upset the Washington uniparty for another rebirth of American liberty. I’m not interested in telling anyone how to vote, but the disaffected should know there is the option to participate in the Alabama Democratic primaries on Super Tuesday 2024. Alabama does have an open primary system after all, and even folks who have always voted for the GOP are free to make change for something new.

Joey Clark is a native Alabamian and is currently the host of the radio program News and Views on News Talk 93.1 FM WACV out of Montgomery, AL M-F 12 p.m. - 3 p.m. His column appears every Tuesday in 1819 News. To contact Joey for media or speaking appearances as well as any feedback, please email newsandviews931@gmail.com.

The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to Commentary@1819news.com

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