Matthew Noah Smith
Sandersism’s diagnosis of the American condition is an explicit inversion of the traditional form of American exceptionalism. America is not a shining city on the hill, a beacon to the world. It is instead a trash heap whose subterranean flames glumly flicker and yet whose fumes somehow manage to pollute the globe. America is not merely fallen; it is the devil itself. (“God damn America!”) If America is exceptional, according to Sandersism, it is exceptionally bad.