Archive for the ‘bernie sanders’ Tag

Sanders Buying Votes in Alaska   5 comments

We went to the movies last night and then to pie at Denny’s. We were joking between the three of us, enjoying some family time, when we noticed a young man wandering around the restaurant, talking to people. He seemed like a really nice guy. None of his interactions appeared negative.

After a while, we noticed that he was working with another young man and giving him money occasionally. When Brad went to pay the bill, the line was lengthy, so I went to let the dog out of the car, so I didn’t see what happened after I left, but Brad and Kyle are good reporters. One of the young man came up to them, asked  them how they were doing, “how’s your family? Your son looks like he’s in high school. Are you old enough to vote before June?”

It was then that they noticed the Bernie Sanders button on the guy’s jacket. Kyle won’t be 18 before June 26 and he won’t quite be old enough to vote in the November election, but he has been following the election so he talked with the guy for a while. He says “Typical Sanders supporter – well-meaning, but no concept of economics or liberty.”

When they got up to the cash register, one of the young men laid down $10 toward our bill. Brad wasn’t really paying attention, but Kyle thinks they were doing this with everyone, but I had thought they were targeting younger and more sporty looking and people with younger folks. Brad was wearing Birkenstocks and shorts in March when there is still snowpack on the ground. That screams avante guard and lacking in common sense – which is my experience with Sanders’ supporters. Anyway, after he laid down the $10, he said — “Hope to see you at the caucuses tomorrow.” Alaska’s Democratic caucuses are today (Saturday the 26th) and Jane Sanders was here in Alaska this week.

In other words …

Sanders supporters are literally BUYING VOTES in Alaska.

This morning on KFAR660’s Patriots Lament a man called in to share his similar experience at Denny’s last night. He noticed that the young men seemed much more interested in talking to the workers than the customers. That’s how good socialists work. I’m thinking management didn’t get any conversation or money.

I had planned to blog on the responses I received to my question about why folks support Sanders. The responses all talked about integrity and honor. I had doubts about that after the violent protests at Trump rallies, but now they’re openly buying votes and someone I know and trust watched them do it.

Sanders is expected to win the caucuses in Alaska which is a proportional state. Sanders needs to get a lot of delegates in these later contests, so it makes sense. Alaska Democratic Party also allows people to change their registration at the poll for the primaries (58% of Alaskan voters are registered non-partisan/undeclared). And if someone gave me $10, I’d feel obligated to vote like they want.

Brad, by the way, handed the $10 back to the young man and said “You can keep your money and I’ll keep my vote.”

I am under no illusions that any of the candidates might do this. Of course, they would! Generally running for election involves making promises to spend everybody’s money on certain things that candidates believe are popular with the people who would vote for them. Bernie is promising to provide “free” medical care, housing, schooling, food, energy, etc., ad infinitum, to those people who vote for him … largely at the expense of those who won’t vote for him. So it’s not a leap that his campaign is literally buying votes at the busiest restaurant in Fairbanks on the Friday night before the Democratic caucuses.

  • Does integrity say nothing when its supporters block traffic and access to venues in an attempt to shut down freedom of speech and association?
  • Is it honorable to offer $10 off a meal for  your vote?

Apparently.I wouldn’t have voted for a socialist anyway, but now I am actually opposed to Sanders entire campaign. I would expect something like this from Trump — rather suspect it, actually — but the “I’m above the politics” message clashes with buying votes the night before the caucus.

But, hey, at least he’s being consistent about buying votes.

Calling All Sanders Supporters   4 comments

Similar to my question about Trump — why do you support Bernie Sanders for President?

If you look at my conversation with Trump voters who logged in on that same question, you can see that I’m respectful. I’m not looking to argue. I just really want to know what you see in this candidate. This is your forum to state your views about why you think he would be the best choice.

Thomas Sowell on Bernie Sanders   Leave a comment

Thomas Sowell was one of the economists my university professor in Economics made us study. So when I see a great article by him, I love to repost it.

Thomas Sowell on Bernie Sanders

Many people of mature years are amazed at how many young people have voted for Senator Bernie Sanders, and are enthusiastic about the socialism he preaches. Many of those older people have lived long enough to have seen socialism fail, time and again, in countries around the world. Venezuela, with all its rich oil resources, is currently on the verge of economic collapse, after its heady fling with socialism. But, most of the young have missed all that, and their dumbed-down education is far more likely to present the inspiring rhetoric of socialism than to present its dismal track record. Socialism is in fact a wonderful vision — a world of the imagination far better than any place anywhere in the real world, at any time over the thousands of years of recorded history. Even many conservatives would probably prefer to live in such a world if they thought it was possible.Socialism Attracts Some Young PeopleMany people of mature years are amazed at how many young people have voted for Senator Bernie Sanders, and are enthusiastic about the socialism he preaches. Many of those older people have lived long enough to have seen socialism fail, time and again, in countries around the world. Venezuela, with all its rich oil resources, is currently on the verge of economic collapse, after its heady fling with socialism. But, most of the young have missed all that, and their dumbed-down education is far more likely to present the inspiring rhetoric of socialism than to present its dismal track record. Socialism is in fact a wonderful vision — a world of the imagination far better than any place anywhere in the real world, at any time over the thousands of years of recorded history. Even many conservatives would probably prefer to live in such a world if they thought it was possible.

Source: Socialism Attracts Some Young People

Posted February 20, 2016 by aurorawatcherak in economics

Tagged with , , ,

Dems Go Crazy   5 comments

PHOTO: Pictured (L-R) are Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton in Osage, Iowa, Jan. 5, 2016 and Sen. Bernie Sanders in Las Vegas, Dec. 28, 2015.I am totally opposed to socialism because I’m smart enough to realize that you can’t give everything to everybody just by soaking the “rich” and expect to achieve any sort of stability. High taxation systems are not compatible with liberty.

So Hillary is losing her national lead against Bernie Sanders. I say “Good!”

The 2016 Presidential race might, possibly, be between a radical ideologue and a conservative. Nice! Not that Hillary is not a radical ideologue, but she’s better at couching her radical anti-liberty ideals in more moderate tones, which makes it more likely that people will not recognize the liberty-death-spiral that she represents.

The hope is that the American people, confronted with the insanity of socialism, will finally see how reasonable conservative views really are.

And, if we don’t … if we prefer to become Greece … well, that won’t last very long. By the time my kids are the age I am now, I suspect we will have had a third American revolution and something other than the United States of America will exist in its place.

Bernie Sanders is a great argument for why democracy is a bad idea.

The High Cost of Free   4 comments

These days, the political landscape is excited by Bernie Sanders’ promise of free stuff to the poor and the middle class at the expense of those wicked “rich” people. Free medical care, free schooling at least through a BA degree, free welfare, a $15 an hour minimum wage, and … well, you get the point. He is the modern day Herbert Hoover, promising a car in every garage and a chicken in every pot … or a tofu roast, perhaps for our vegans.

We were having a conversation with a young relative who is visiting and she was talking about how she is so proud that she doesn’t rely on her parents’ health insurance to pay her medical bills. Instead, she’s covered by Medi-Cal, which is completely free.

Free??? For whom?

Medi-Cal costs California’s taxpayers more than $4 billion a year, which explains why California has the highest state income tax in the nation at $13.5%. Under the ACA, Medi-Cal balooned to cover 12.7 million people, 1 of every 3 Californians. California hailed the new enrollments as a success, because it cut California’s uninsured population in half. Unfortunately, the system is very strained and may well bankrupt the state if there is not substantial increases in taxes on those who are not eligible for Medi-Cal.

California lost nearly 1 million population between 2004 and 2013, according to Reason magazine. Texas gained 600,000 from California while losing about 350,000 to California during that time period. In fact, states in all regions of the country except the northeast and Mid-Atlantic areas received more Californians than they’ve sent to the Golden State.

That represents an income drain of $26 billion annually. California’s population continues to increase through natural births and foreign migrations, but folks don’t stay in California.

As California loses population to other states, it manages to grow its tax revenue. Californians aren’t getting better government service for this money because of the state’s debts and pension obligations, which continue to grow as part of the budget.

There are nearly 10 million Californians living below the poverty line and many more who have seen little growth in wages for nearly two decades. They pay for high-quality education, reliable and safe public transportation, functional courts and colleges, and they desire a tax system that encourages employment and wages growth.

“Those citizens and their hopes are the first casualties of a political system that cuts services and raises taxes, fees and fines to finance ever-greater retirement, health care and corrections costs. When that happens, they receive fewer and shoddier services despite higher tuition, taxes, fees and fines, utilize deteriorating infrastructure, and seek work and wages in a less robust employment environment.” David Crane, Govern for California, Bay Area News Group article.

Tax increases don’t solve the problem. Spending on services continued to decline as revenue surged. There is no clear solution in a country caught up in the “free everything for everybody” parade.

There is a failure to understand the most basic principle of economics — there is no such thing as a free lunch. It is impossible for someone to get something for nothing. It may be free to you, but it costs someone somewhere something for you to eat lunch. The person (or persons) footing the bill incur an opportunity cost — there was something they could have done with those higher taxes that they can no longer do. Maybe they would have used those stolen dollars to start a business that would have created jobs that poor people could have worked at that would have provided them with the money to pay their own health care costs, but because those tax-payers didn’t have the money (because they were working to pay someone else’s medical expenses), the business was never created and the jobs don’t exist.

Eventually, those taxpayers not driven into bankruptcy by the ever-increasing theft of their earned income pick up and move stakes to states that don’t take so much of their income because (surprise, surprise!) those states don’t offer such generous welfare programs.

Eventually, California will run out of other people’s money to spend and the poor will be left without services. That might take a century or it could happen by the end of this decade. California’s contribution to its Department of Transportation is slated to drop 30% over the next two years. I’d say that fiscal crisis is coming sooner rather than later.

There is no such thing as a free lunch … or free health care … or free education. We might hope that weren’t the case, we might be of the opinion that it shouldn’t be the case, but whatever our desires, the fact is that it always costs something for that “free” service to be given to you and sooner or later, those who earn the actual money get tired of living on the edge of poverty so they can support young ladies who want “free” everything. Meanwhile, her parents — whose health insurance she is proudly not using — are expecting their income taxes to go up to unsustainable levels in the near-future.

I’m sure that won’t affect the conviviality of Thanksgiving at all.

I Like Bernie Sanders   6 comments

No, seriously. I believe he’s sincere. I think he wants to make the United States a better place to live. Moreover, I admire the man’s willingness to stand up to Hillary Clinton. There’s evidence that some who have done that in the past have paid some pretty heavy costs for their bravado, so to get up there time and time again and call the shovel a spade is admirable.

He’s right. She cannot stand up to Wall Street because she is bought and paid for by Wall Street hedge fund managers. She also gets a lot of money from George Soros, several media outlets, labor unions and several health insurance and health care corporations.

I also admire his principle in sticking to small donations. It’s hard to be owned by any one (or a couple of dozen) donor when you take very small donations from a wide group of people.

I also agree with many of his criticisms of Republicans — the wars, the corporate welfare. I suspect, were I to sit down with him, we would find a lot of areas of agreement between us.

If Alaska’s Democratic primary were not a closed caucus, I might even vote for Bernie in the March caucus, not because I think he’d be a good president but because I’d like to see Queen Hillary’s head explode if she doesn’t get the nomination. Alas, you have to be a Democratic Party member to “vote” in the Democratic caucus in March and it is against my principles to join a political party, so I’ll have to leave it up to actual Democrats to coalesce around denying Queen Hillary her crown.

So, back to Bernie. I admire the man. I won’t be voting for him. It’s not personal. I’m a principles voter and admiring the man does not mean I agree with his principles. What he believes is good for the United States would be an economic disaster. No one who has taken an actual economics course believes you can give everyone everything for free and not raise taxes except on corporations and rich people. Tuition-free college, single-payer health insurance, expanded Social Security benefits, and all these other giveaways that he proposes all cost money, which must be paid for by taxing people.

Remember — I think taxation is thievery. It may be necessary thievery under the current system we live under, but it is still thievery. I want to reduce the thievery as much as possible by reducing the size and scope of government, which is the exact opposite of what Bernie is proposing.

I also recognize a reality that apparently has never occurred to Bernie. No poor person who ever given me or anyone I know a job. The more you tax “the rich” the more you reduce employment in this country, thereby creating more poor people. The fastest way out of poverty is to get a rich person to give you a real job doing something real, as opposed to having government create jobs that exist for the sole purpose of providing jobs, that must be funded by stealing tax dollars from productive members of society. That is an endless cycle of using other people’s money to prop up a system that is unsustainable. Sooner or later, you run out of other people’s money and you have to start taxing the very people you were trying to help in the first place. This has happened in every country that has tried socialism. We’ve seen the outcome in the Soviet Union and China. We see the increasing wobble in Europe. Do we really want to go there as a nation?

Then there’s his health coverage plan. Bernie proposes we all go under Medicaid. Have you ever had anything to do with Medicaid? No? Well, I have. I worked in social services for 15 years, so I am intimately familiar. It is an awful system that, by and large, does not allow for preventative care and delays treatment of conditions until they are fatal. It is characterized by many bureaucratic hoops between the doctor and the patient and by very long waiting lists. Only medications that are cheap and old are covered, so better medications are not available. In most states, Medicaid is the single largest expenditure in the state budget and it is a huge cost to the federal government. It also pays doctors at about 60% of the prevailing current rates, disincentivizing the creation of new doctors to replace the ones trapped in this new Sanders Medicaid system.

But, hey, it would make everyone equal … and, by and large, sick and untreated as well as unable to afford to purchase better health care even if it were available. It would also make us a nation enslaved to the tax man. England, Norway, many other single-payer health insurance countries tax pretty much everyone who is not on the government dole at better than 50% of their income to pay for their version of Medicaid. There are no entrepreneurs in Europe. Europeans of that mind set mostly immigrate to the United States because they can’t afford to be entrepreneurs in their home countries. Again, do we really want to go there as a nation?

Remember what I said about my principles remaining the same no matter who is espousing them? Well, admiring Bernie Sanders for being true to his convictions does not translate into thinking his convictions are a good idea. Enslaving your fellow Americans to pay for your health care … retirement … job … college … is a bad idea in every time and in every place. Doing it when you have no way to pay for it just doubles down on bad ideas. I believe he means well, but his goals are not going to work out to his pleasure.

So I won’t be voting for Bernie Sanders if he makes it to the general election. He seems like a nice guy, but I don’t think he understands how the real world works …

Which is mostly true of all socialists, by the way. Glorious pie-in-the-sky intentions backed by magical thinking that has never worked out anywhere in the past.

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