08 April 2016

​Reasons to support Bernie Sanders:

​Everyone has their own views, and that's the way it should be. But if anyone has any doubt at all, please read my reasons for supporting Bernie Sanders. 

·       Consistent record of supporting working peoples' interests against oligarchic mega-rich corporations and individuals, including rapacious and actually, literally criminal banks and other wall street institutions (for example nearly all of them participate in illegal assistance to the very rich to hide offshore assets from taxation; and participate in illegal and fraudulent derivative-related activity even after the meltdown they created in the first place; contrary to attempts to mischaracterize Sanders's positions, this includes so-called "shadow banking.")

·       Supports legal regime to actually enforce and reinforce statutory and regulatory control on Wall Street excesses (including breaking up the "too big to fail" banks under existing Dodd Frank powers (the recent flap over how to do this is totally distorted; if you read his answer he understands perfectly how the legal regime would allow this to be done) & 21st Century Glass Steagall, etc.

·       Non-interventionist foreign policy, 100% voting record going back to 1980s. Opposes sweetheart defense contract deals and rampant privatization of national security, military, and intelligence infrastructures in the US. Supports international cooperation wherever feasible, and even handedness and rethinking policies of "projection of power."

·       Supports tax reform to undo the trend towards rigged tax code favoring the very rich and offshoring of individual and corporate wealth, as recently revealed in truly wretched excess in the Panama Papers… 100% record on this issue going back decades. To include significant realignment of marginal rates on very high incomes to resemble the tax system we had in this country during the great prosperity of 1950-1974, before Reaganomics and tax changes to favor the rich, which are still in effect

·       Favors free trade, not regimes of so-called Trade Agreements that are really systems of rigging the rules in favor of big corporations and deals with foreign governments to switch jobs overseas.

·       Favors realistic transaction tax on Wall Street to discourage financialization of the economy and encourage actual production

·       30 year record of slow, steady legislative progress on liberal reforms

·       Supports infrastructure investment to build trains, bridges, public transport, libraries, public universities, research and development, renewable energy infrastructure and technology research, etc. both to create jobs and address the no. 1 environmental AND national security issue in America, which is Climate Change (military strategists agree)

·       Supports free tuition for public universities and colleges, like many states had until the 1970s in this country, financed by the transaction tax and tax reform

·       Supports moving towards a system which recognizes that health care is a right not a privilege, including ending special interest deals with Big Pharma and for profit medical industry

·       Supports ending Citizens United and other methods to take the power of money out of politics and end the oligarchic superstructure has used to control policy with money; public financing of elections

·       Supports programs to put people to work and ensure that no one goes without decent housing and nutrition support

·       First to support $15 min. wage among national candidates

·       Supports rational gun control; has D- rating from NRA (only supports some restraint in making non-intentional gun dealers liable for sale of guns), including total assault weapons ban and registration of handguns

Economists like Thomas Pikkety, author of the hugely influential Capitalism in the 21st Century, have said that this program would be transformative and ensure a robust and growing economy with a much fairer distribution of the wealth resulting from American innovation and productivity.

Contrary to many characterizations of Sanders's ideas of how to do this, he has created the largest political movement of citizens demanding change, and the greatest amount of enthusiasm for political change in a long, long time. It is defeatism on the part of the Centrists of the Democratic party to say, "get real, you can't do this, you need the Republicans and they won't vote for anything." You don't need the Republicans if you persuade enough of the people to join this peaceful political revolution, and if you take money out of politics so legislators are free to actually represent what their constituents, not their financial backers, want. We can change the rules of the Senate in one vote to do away with the filibuster, and with a 50 state, fight every race strategy, we can take back both houses of Congress within a few years, and enact a Progressive New New Deal. This is perfectly possible, but it requires bold, big thinking, not the kind of compromise-in-advance, triangulate, play the incremental change game favored by Centrists like Clinton and Obama.

Hillary Clinton has compromised, one might say triangulated, positions on every single one of these issues, and has refused to commit to vetoing TransPacific Partnership and many other more progressive positions she has articulated, but failed to actually commit to. She has taken huge amounts of money from special interests, which necessarily implies a quid pro quo, while Sanders has refused to do so (similar to how Russ Feingold has refused to do so, and is about to be elected to the Senate again). This election, where the Republicans are cracking up and will almost certainly lose, is a rare, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to elect a real progressive to the White House and commence a years-long movement to reinvent American government as much more progressive, which is what the majority of Americans want, according to all impartial polling.

Lastly, it is simply not true that Sanders is less electable than Clinton. A poll in Wisconsin on election day showed 90% of Democrats thought Sanders was honest, only 58% thought Clinton was. Her "negative view" numbers, long known to be the best predictor of electoral success, have always been higher than his. He consistently polls higher than her against either Trump or Cruz. And, recently, national polls have shown the Democratic electorate favors him, by a slight margin, overall.

If you have not yet voted in your state's primary or caucus, please consider voting for Bernie Sanders, to bring about REAL CHANGE in America.  

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