The Would-Be Bum-in-Chief

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Investor's Business Daily recently and accurately profiled Bernie Sanders as "The Bum Who Wants Your Money." Here's a sample of what the man who wants to run your life has done with his own:

Then he tried his hand freelancing for leftist rags, writing about "masturbation and rape" and other crudities for $50 a story. He drove around in a rusted-out, Bondo-covered VW bug with no working windshield wipers. Friends said he was "always poor" and his "electricity was turned off a lot." They described him as a slob who kept a messy apartment -- and this is what his friends had to say about him.
IBD has a point, up to a point, but consider how the profile ends:
Sure, Sanders may not be a hypocrite, but this is nothing to brag about. His worthless background contrasts sharply with the successful careers of other "outsiders" in the race for the White House, including a billionaire developer, a world-renowned neurosurgeon and a Fortune 500 CEO.

The choice in this election is shaping up to be a very clear one. It will likely boil down to a battle between those who create and produce wealth, and those who take it and redistribute it.
If only that last paragraph were true... Thanks to decades of the mixed economy, few people have a proper conception of the purpose of government, including those mentioned or alluded to above. (And, considering that there is more of Orren Boyle than Hank Rearden in the Donald, it is also debatable that he really produces wealth.) I doubt any of these would attempt or even pay lip service to reducing the size of the welfare state, let alone returning government to its proper scope.

So, what we have is a principled ideologue who will actively work to aggrandize the government's inappropriate power over the economy -- vs. (at best) a candidate who hasn't a coherent set of principles and isn't going to try to change anything. Thus the "alternative" will not actively seek to further improper government, but will also not be able to start improving things and may even do something acutely harmful without completely realizing it. And then there's Trump, whose actions in office are guaranteed to be buffoonish and "competent," but unguided by anything resembling a pro-capitalist ideology -- but all of which will be portrayed as "capitalist" by the left. A Trump-Sanders contest would present the following choice: a competent, unprincipled power-luster vs. a (hopefully) incompetent, very principled enemy of individual rights who has the wind at his back. And don't forget that, no matter how much of a bum Sanders is, his appeal is based on what many people wrongly feel to be moral, that is, his explicit altruism and the un-thought-out-but endemic notion that anything goes so long as "others" "benefit" from whatever he does.

It is a testament to how dreadful this election is shaping up to be so far that such a piece doesn't make it crystal clear that we should vote against Sanders, should he be nominated. That said, I lean towards the position that we do vote against Sanders in such a case, but this must be accompanied by support for a better moral and political alternative than was available.

This is because no election should be about who will run everything, and yet this one is as close as I hope it ever gets to being just that.

-- CAV


Steve D said...

‘this one is as close as I hope it ever gets to being just that’

Seems like the worse a candidate is, the more popular he/she becomes. Unfortunately, it’s likely to get worse before it gets better. It appears that the US is moving into the next phase toward a dictatorship, the demagogue or caudillo. It took decades to get to this stage but the three most popular candidates are all demagogues.

The problem with Trump is that he is not just a mere demagogue. He appears to be truly unhinged and shameless (not just pretending) and therefore more dangerous than the other two. He brings US politics to a new low.

For example:

Gus Van Horn said...


It is for things like this that Trump is the one candidate who could make me even consider a protest vote for Sanders.


Scott Holleran said...

Great post, Gus. Well said.

Gus Van Horn said...

Thanks, Scott.