1. Socialism Defined
Socialism is where the state owns the means of production but where private ownership of property still exists. Bernie Sanders believes there is a third way, as practiced primarily in Scandinavian countries, called “democratic socialism,” which is more accurately defined as a mixed economy. Public and private ownership co-exist under this “ism” although personal income taxes are exceptionally high to pay for state administration of multiple services.
Every country today is defined by some kind of mixed economy, the most successful of which, in purely economic terms, might be considered “Totalitarian Capitalism” as practiced in China whereby the state supports private ownership of production in exchange for rigid control of political expression and personal rights. Because this is a totalitarian form of government “cronyism” is an endemic problem. It has “worked” in China primarily because their economy is in rapid transition from a third world to a first world economy. Once wages increase it is questionable whether its totalitarian aspects can be maintained.
Ironically, the current United States has a form of government which is similar in many ways to China whereby a “crony” form of capitalism contingent upon paid political influence and a central bank ensures the success of a few at the expense of the many. Taxes in this kind of structure are levied to augment the position of the powerful. It is a miasma to assume higher taxes increase economic opportunity for the middle classes. The net effect of higher income taxes is the ability for the powerful to skirt them through extensive professional consultants and political favors designed to do just that.
Marxist (excerpt taken from Erich Fromm 1961)
“It is to create a form of production and an organization of society in which man can overcome alienation from his product, from his work, from his fellow man, from himself and from nature; in which he can return to himself and grasp the world with his own powers, thus becoming one with the world.”
Socialism for Marx was, as Paul Tillich put it, “a resistance movement against the destruction of love in social reality.”
Verdict: For, yet outdated
Winston Churchill (notable quotes)
“The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings. The inherent virtue of Socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.”
“Socialism is the philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance and the gospel of envy.”
Bernie Sanders *Socialism refined
“When I use the word socialist, and I know some people are uncomfortable with it, I say it is imperative that we create a political revolution, that we get millions of people involved in the political process, and we create a government that works for the many, not the few.”
As time has gone on so has the definition of socialism, we must understand that Bernie clearly has a different reasoning behind his belief than what everyone else thinks. Most people jump to the conclusion that they should take a rational view on socialism, that unlike Bernie it has remained unchanged, based on the textbook definition.
2. Why should you feel the Bern?
Although Bernie may be old enough to remember the Atari 2600, that doesn’t mean that he’s stuck in the past. While not as current on the latest update to snapchat, he is still up to date on many current issues, and his stance has remained the same on most topics from the time he became a prominent political figure. This might not be a bad thing, as there’s a lot we can learn from people that change their stance for political gain and public acceptance. Political gain may be a smart decision as it can gain more votes, however what does that say about what you’re really fighting for. I believe Bernie fights for the right of the people, where as Hillary Clinton fights for the right of increasing power.
3. Our verdict
Why do we believe in Bernie? Compare him against any of the main candidates, Trump, Clinton (maybe Cruz), we would gladly take Bernie. Yes he has flaws, just like any other candidate, but his flaws only stem past his decision to hold his ground. We believe Bernie is uncommon just like us, and while we may find the other candidates entertaining, I’ll stick to the bad lip readings.
Did we also mention that Bernie once recorded his own song? Give it a listen here.