The one percenters are already harping on the fact that Bernie calls himself a socialist. A legacy of the Cold War is that this word in the public mind means communist and that has become a code for whatever is “un-American,” always undefined. Most people don’t know what either socialism or communism is, partially because both are complex umbrella ideologies that can’t be summarized in a tweet.
But if you consider the things Bernie actually champions you will see that he is about as “socialist” as FDR. And if you consider his proposals you will find that most Americans support each of them, some by a large majority. They are called socialist by the establishment (both GOP and Dem) because Bernie’s ideas, if enacted, would result in a significant transfer of wealth and power away from the one percent and toward the lower and middle class.
The sad irony is that so many remain under the spell of false consciousness. You can tell this because as soon as they hear the word “socialist” they start running around hysterically claiming Bernie’s coming to get your money and property. This from people who cheered when the billionaires’ GOP lapdogs delivered them trillions in tax breaks while piling on the national debt.
The truth is that even if Bernie was coming to get your money and property it would be a forlorn effort because the billionaires already have it. As of 2014 the top 0.1% of the population owns more than the bottom 90%. The Walton family makes more in one minute than the average Walmart employee makes in a year. Jeff Bezos has to spend $26 Million per day just to keep from making more money. The average American makes approximately $2 million in a lifetime. There is a tiny cadre who have more money than they could spend in 3000 lifetimes while 40% of Americans can’t find $400 to cover an emergency.
I seriously doubt you have anything to lose, much less to fear, from either Bernie or socialism.
Sanders wants to pay for his most sweeping proposals with a series of tax hikes and fees, mostly levelled at the wealthiest of Americans: hedge fund managers, Wall Street speculators and big businesses.
Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders is catching up – and even surpassing – Hillary Clinton in some polls. What are the Vermont senator’s policies and beliefs? 1. He is a socialist. Sanders is running as a “Democratic socialist”, but in his long political career he became comfortable with just “socialist” (“I am a socialist and everyone knows it,” he once said.)