6
   

Imagine Bernie Sanders wins the White House. Then what?

 
 
snood
 
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 05:29 pm
Sometimes if someone says Bernie is unrealistic, they get met with some pretty strong push back from Bernie's supporters. They get called lazy and complacent skeptics who are just advocating giving up and giving in to the status quo without a fight.
There has to be some kind of area of grace, where a progressive can want everything possible that government has to offer, but still understand that everything in representative government is negotiable by definition.

That's what seems to be missing from the sloganeering and zeal of the Bernie crusade - any acknowledgement of the possibility that progress in Washington might require not only the energy and determination of Bernie's "political revolution", but a concrete plan.

When presented with the opportunity to explain how he would achieve his lofty promises of free college, single payer and repeal of Citizens United ( to name three) if his coattails don't sweep a Democratic majority into Congress, and if the Republicans just keep doing what they've been doing, this is what Bernie said:
--------------------------------------------------------------
"What we do is you put an issue before Congress, let’s just use free tuition at public colleges and universities, and that vote is going to take place on November 8 ... whatever it may be. We tell millions and millions of people, young people and their parents, there is going to be a vote ... half the people don’t know what’s going on ... but we tell them when the vote is, maybe we welcome a million young people to Washington, D.C. to say hello to their members of Congress. Maybe we have the telephones and the e-mails flying all over the place so that everybody in America will know how their representative is voting. [...]

And then Republicans are going to have to make a decision. Then they’re going to have to make a decision. You know, when thousands of young people in their district are saying, “You vote against this, you’re out of your job, because we know what’s going on.” So this gets back to what a political revolution is about, is bringing people in touch with the Congress, not having that huge wall. That’s how you bring about change."

---------------------------------------------------------------------
The article by David Nir makes this observation:

Right now, most Republicans in Congress feel very safe electorally, since almost all of them represent red states or red districts that have rarely shown much interest in Democrats in the past. (Gerrymandering is one key cause, partisan self-sorting another.) Yet in spite of this, Sanders is ultimately saying that his is a plan to turn those red states and red districts blue: that under threat of mass protests, Republican office-holders will start behaving like Democrats—or in the alternative, states and districts that previously sent Republicans to Capitol Hill will begin sending Democrats instead, as a result of ballot box backlash against a recalcitrant GOP.

In this sharply polarized age, getting politicians or political jurisdictions to change their stripes—or at least, their coloring—is an incredibly tall task. But Bernie Sanders’ already challenging legislative promises rely on this foundational electoral promise, which will be even more difficult if not impossible to fulfill. Revolutions are never easy, especially when they hinge on getting Republicans to change their minds.

And if Sanders’ model is wrong, and Republicans successfully shoot down his intiatives then go on to win re-election, what then?

http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2016/2/21/1483791/-Imagine-Bernie-Sanders-wins-the-White-House-Then-what
---------------------------------------------------------------------

I can't get to the "what then" part of the conversation, in my encounters with the more strident Bernie followers. Long before the "what then" part, I run into the "You just want to give up and keep the corrupt system at status quo" part.
 
edgarblythe
 
  0  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 05:40 pm
Then we finally have a president of the people, at long last.
blatham
 
  4  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 06:16 pm
@edgarblythe,
Quote:
Then we finally have a president of the people, at long last.

I understand and empathize with your passion. But that is a terribly glib answer.

If Sanders wins, he will have to compromise his ideals across the board. To imagine otherwise is to imagine a version of totalitarianism directed by a single individual.
0 Replies
 
parados
 
  2  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 07:56 pm
@edgarblythe,
Which will be absolutely meaningless because the GOP will certainly have a large enough contingent in the Senate to filibuster anything and everything.

That is assuming there is a landslide large enough to take back the House. The current predictions are even if the Dems take every seat rated a tossup or slightly leaning GOP they won't regain the House.
http://www.270towin.com/2016-house-election/
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 08:14 pm
@parados,
How many years will we have to wait?
parados
 
  2  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 08:18 pm
@cicerone imposter,
In 2020 it will be a Presidential election year leading into redistricting in states after the census. If Dems can carry well in state legislatures then we may see a change in the House. Otherwise it might rely on citizens being angry enough at the state level to force non partisan redistricting.
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 08:26 pm
@parados,
I'm afraid citizens do not involve themselves into politics that much. Most don't even vote.
parados
 
  2  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 08:35 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Certainly citizens can cause a change. California did it with Prop 20 setting up a commission. Florida did it with an amendment to their constitution but it still required lawsuits to fix the Legislature's ignoring the rule of law when the drew up districts.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Citizens_Redistricting_Commission

http://miamiherald.typepad.com/nakedpolitics/2016/01/florida-legislature-wont-appeal-redistricting-ruling-sets-districts-for-2016-election.html

Of course vigilance is still required to hold politicians feet to the fire on the law.
https://www.fairdistrictsnow.org/redistricting/is-it-over

0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 08:49 pm
@edgar (but for everyone)
Here's a very interesting, honest and nuanced interview with Brian Beutler, Michelle Goldberg and Rick Perlstein. http://bit.ly/2181rym

Edgar and CI will like Perlstein very much
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  4  
Reply Sun 21 Feb, 2016 09:21 pm
Michelle Goldberg (see audio link above) has just reminded me of something we really ought to consider.

Hillary in the White House will, because of her gender and because of her perceptions and policy prescriptions related to women's rights and needs, is likely to produce the sort of progressive political effects which prior progressive policies have had - that is, the improvement of life for many millions of American citizens previously marginalized and disempowered. All such programs have also gained Democrats the solid and deserved loyalty most of us maintain and have for generations.

She may not be the sort of economic revolutionary we'd like to see, but this other element is VERY important.

We knew when it was clear she was going to run that the right would do everything it might imagine to smear her as a true representative of women because they knew that would be an electoral killer for them. Some large portion of the divisiveness presently promoted between her and other women originates there. Not all, but much.
0 Replies
 
snood
 
  3  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 12:10 am
If you only read one more article about Bernie Sanders, PLEASE make it this one

I only included a part of it. But it captures - thoroughly, precisely, devastatingly - the disturbing thing about Bernie that I have been trying so clumsily to say when I say he is "just saying what people want to hear".

I'm sure that Edgar and Lash will not read past a couple paragraphs because it shatters all their rationale for hero worship, and it's much simpler just to call it a lowdown Hillary enabling plot. But, for the rest of you, PLEASE read the whole article. It's a little longish, but I promise you it will shed new light on Senator Sanders and his "political revolution".

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Senator Sanders, I like you. I admire you. Most of the time, I wish that we had 99 more senators just like you.

And I would, wouldn't I? I'm on the younger end of the likely voter spectrum. I'm male. I'm white. I'm liberal as hell. I'm the kind of voter that you should have a lock on.

But Senator, we have a problem, and it's a big one. When it comes to the specifics surrounding the core issue of your campaign, you have too often come across as either disingenuous or strangely removed from current reality.

The red flags have become too frequent to ignore.

You recently claimed that under your leadership, "the Treasury Department will create a too-big-to fail list of banks and insurance companies."

Of course it will. The Treasury Department has been legally required to do that since the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010. The institutions are, on top of that, already subjected to stress tests, and when they fail, there are fairly serious consequences. The Department's annual report is available right here. You can find a list of these institutions on Wikipedia, for crying out loud. The Financial Stability Board also maintains a global list, which you can find right here, should you find that helpful.

Similarly, you have made a fair amount of noise calling for an independent audit of the Federal Reserve. That's already done, every single year. You can find last year's report right here.

What the plan that you and Sen. Paul have put forth does is, a) pander to low-information voters, and b) make the Federal Reserve's every decision subject to congressional pressure. What you are proposing, Senator Sanders, would set the Fed's independence back four decades and allow Paul Ryan to pressure it at every turn.

Even when I agree with your proposed policies, I am too often alarmed by your extreme departures from reality.

You have proposed, for example, to pay for universal free public college with a tax on Wall Street speculation. Hillary Clinton had previously proposed such a tax, sans the promise that it would cover such a large expense. It's called a Tobin tax. The idea dates back to 1972, and is meant to stabilize markets.
[snip]
But none of this holds a candle to the bizarre narrative you have consistently pushed around Glass-Steagall, your primary point of distinction from Secretary Clinton on finance. You have repeatedly insinuated, implied and said flat-out that the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, which you tend to call a repeal of Glass-Steagall, caused the financial crisis.

Senator Sanders, that simply isn't true. That is a lie invented for a slimy attack ad during the 2008 campaign. There is an overwhelming consensus--not from Wall Street, but from watchdogs and academics -- that the repeal of Glass-Steagall did not cause the financial crisis. Fact checker after fact checker after fact checker after fact checker has found the claim to be, at best, an enormous stretch. They were doing so, from all parts of the political spectrum, years before you launched a presidential campaign.

The law had little if anything to do with the practices leading up to the crisis. It aimed, as you well know, to separate commercial from investment banking. You can support that policy or oppose it, with honest, pro-regulatory arguments on either side. I might even agree with you. But you cannot with a straight face blame the financial crisis on its absence.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/larry-womack/dear-bernie-red-flags-frequent_b_9289954.html
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 01:09 am
@snood,
Thanks for sharing that article
0 Replies
 
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 06:48 am
when i think of bernie winning i envision this scenario from CVB's song When I Win The Lottery, and frankly i can't wait

Never ran a flag
Up a pole
Like Mr. Red White and Blue down the road
And I never called myself a hero for killing a known communist
Now I could walk into any old bar
And find a fight without looking too hard
But I never killed someone I don't know
Just cause someone told me to.

And when I win the lottery
Gonna buy the house next to Mr.
Red, White and Blue
And when I win the lottery
Gonna buy post 306
American legion, paint it red with five gold stars
When I win the lottery


snood
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 07:11 am
@djjd62,
djjd62 wrote:

when i think of bernie winning i envision this scenario from CVB's song When I Win The Lottery, and frankly i can't wait

Never ran a flag
Up a pole
Like Mr. Red White and Blue down the road
And I never called myself a hero for killing a known communist
Now I could walk into any old bar
And find a fight without looking too hard
But I never killed someone I don't know
Just cause someone told me to.


And when I win the lottery
Gonna buy the house next to Mr.
Red, White and Blue
And when I win the lottery
Gonna buy post 306
American legion, paint it red with five gold stars
When I win the lottery





And you say that to say... what? That he'll be an amusing contrast in DC? That him winning will be sweet revenge and shut up the naysayers? Please, explain in simple terms why you can't wait for Bernie to win.
revelette2
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 07:24 am
@snood,
One thing which would be similar with winning the lottery, a lot of people have to loose in order for people to win. All those so called free things Sanders is calling for comes with massive tax hikes which will end up hitting the middle class as well as the rich. He says not as much as the rich, but when you don't have as much as the rich that is little compensation.

Why Bernie Sanders Has to Raise Taxes on the Middle Class

snood
 
  2  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 07:33 am
@revelette2,
revelette2 wrote:

One thing which would be similar with winning the lottery, a lot of people have to loose in order for people to win. All those so called free things Sanders is calling for comes with massive tax hikes which will end up hitting the middle class as well as the rich. He says not as much as the rich, but when you don't have as much as the rich that is little compensation.

Why Bernie Sanders Has to Raise Taxes on the Middle Class



I concur. If you haven't read the article I posted above which exposes the inanity of his proposals, you should. It's a real eye opener.
revelette2
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 08:45 am
@snood,
Wow, I thought you posted it all in your post so I didn't go the link.

Quote:
“"Senator, you are forming a mob of angry, misinformed people and then turning it on the likely Democratic nominee."


Thanks
snood
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 08:56 am
@revelette2,
Yeah. It's a very thorough dismantling of all the feel-good platitudes that have kept him aloft. For those of you (Hillary and Bernie followers alike - who are interested in the unvarnished truth about Bernie's blustery proposals) who haven't read the article I linked above - READ IT. If it doesn't change your opinion or at least make you want further answers, I don't know what will.
0 Replies
 
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 09:23 am
@snood,
it'll be nice to see you guys be commies, like most of the rest of us in the world


well perhaps socialists at best
revelette2
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Feb, 2016 09:45 am
@djjd62,
I don't know really about other countries enough to say what kind of government they are. I agree with a lot of socialist ideas and I think Warren is completely right when she talks about our system being rigged towards the 1% in our country and I think that should be changed. On the other hand I don't want everybody to be poor and the government pay for everything. I guess if I described myself it would be a moderate socialist. In your country I guess I would be a conservative. On universities, I think perhaps it should be based on income level and do away with student loans, just give grants based on parents and/or students incomes.
 

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