Observations on life

Bernie Sanders and the democratic socialist state

Bernie Sanders is a dreamer and idealist who can’t even manage his own money, nor plan for retirement. He idolizes Denmark for its social welfare, but forgets to tell you it’s cost or that Denmark is a bit more than half the population of New Jersey. I like Denmark, after all they gave us Legos  The last time I was in Copenhagen a hamburger and fries cost $18.00 🍔

Paul Krugman supports Old Bernie (surprise) when it comes to the milk and honey of Denmark. After all, they are among the happiest people around he points out. Very high taxes and “free” stuff appear to be a winning combination for a small country with a homogeneous population.  Here is how Krugman explains their taxes:

Denmark maintains a welfare state — a set of government programs designed to provide economic security — that is beyond the wildest dreams of American liberals. Denmark provides universal health care; college education is free, and students receive a stipend; day care is heavily subsidized. Overall, working-age families receive more than three times as much aid, as a share of G.D.P., as their U.S. counterparts.

To pay for these programs, Denmark collects a lot of taxes. The top income tax rate is 60.3 percent; there’s also a 25 percent national sales tax. Overall, Denmark’s tax take is almost half of national income, compared with 25 percent in the United States.

So, if you want to pay half your income in taxes in return for “free” college, health care, child care, etc. whether you need it or not, have children or not, no matter how old you are, Denmark may be for you. 

If you are comfortable letting politicians and society tell you how to spend a big chunk of what you earn and leaving you with a lot less discretionary income, vote for Old Bernie.

Old Bernie likes to take shots at billionaires as if they are standing on every street corner and raking in vast amounts of income each day. The fact is the wealth of billionaires is mostly in corporate stocks and hard assets like real estate. The estimated total net worth of all U.S. billionaires is $2.2 trillion according to Breitbart.com  If you want the full scoop on billionaires check out this website.

Now let’s look at the issues and solutions from Old Bernie’s website.

Let me point out a few things to consider. He will spend $1 trillion on infrastructure # 3 (where have we experienced shovel ready projects before?); that’s nearly half the net worth of all billionaires never mind their annual income.

Then look at #8 He will add to the Social Security liability and pay for it via a method that is inadequate, but perhaps also needed just to help fix Social Security as it is. Is Bernie so out of it he doesn’t know where Social Security is headed in only nineteen years?

Now look at great sounding issues # 2, 4, 10 and 12. Who can argue they will benefit some Americans? Taken together, however, they beg the question; what will be the impact on consumer prices and jobs? All these things raise costs and that eventually means higher prices for everyone.

Not so you say, just take those added cost from corporate profits. Aside from the negative impact on stock prices and hence one way or the other, the very foundation of most workers retirement income, lower profits means lower revenue for the federal government.


Issues # 7 and 9 are appealing and massively expensive, but that’s okay because European countries do it and so should the U.S.😎 Bernie needs to look at the efficiency and claim management of Medicare and tell Americans the difference between receiving health care in Europe and the U.S.

And then we have #6 This one is a bizarre misuse of facts; it’s not true and even less true that we need yet another law for an issue already covered by at least two long-standing federal laws. What employer today offers the same job to a women and a man and pays the women 78 cents for every dollar paid the man?  The issue is complex with many relevant past factors. It is not as Old Bernie would have you believe, outright massive pay discrimination.

Where does this leave us? One thing missing is the full story and the truth. If you want all these goodies, if you want to live in a democratic socialist state proposed by Old Bernie that’s fine, but head in that direction with a clear vision of what it means. It will not be paid for or sustained by higher taxes on the income of millionaires and billionaires.

It will mean higher, much higher, taxes on the American middle class including for example a sales tax of between 21% to 25% as is the case in Europe. It will mean higher prices for goods and services and less discretionary income to buy the stuff you want because more of your income is going to what the government says you deserve. 

If that’s what you want, go for it, vote for Old Bernie. But contrary to what Margaret Thatcher said, it’s not just other people’s money supporting the socialist state.



2 replies »

  1. Old Bernie needs a better example than Denmark. In the US it is hard to find a one size fits all solution to any of our problems. Denmark, has the population of Wisconsin, is 88% Danish, 78% Lutheran. Bernie is from a state that has almost the same population of Monmouth County, NJ. To state that the same socialist programs will work on a very diverse population of 319 million is insane.

    Maybe this is why Congress cannot get anything done anymore. Too much diversity to have enough common ground to compromise of even the simple basic issues. Maybe 239 years ago the USA at least had the common ground of being a new nation.


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