Bernie needs to differentiate himself from Warren, here’s my idea: Economic Democracy

I’d like to start this post by saying the inspiration for this came from the Next System Project and Democracy Collaborative (although the ideas are not new). In another life, I would have been an economist and gone on to do the work they are doing. And thanks to my partner, for helping me with developing this.

Also, I am developing this idea, feel free to critique.

Warren has come out with a detailed plan for M4All and is talking about Billionaires. We know that she won’t follow though if she wins, but the media is giving her all the cred and that steals Bernie’s thunder. We are looking at the possibility of a brokered convention. Bernie needs to win outright and to do that he needs to differentiate himself from the false progressives, my idea: Economic Democracy.

What is economic democracy, well, it’s gotten different definitions. Here I am talking about everyday people owning and controlling companies, banks, etc. instead of billionaires, stockholders, and CEOs.

In addition, to differentiating himself from false progressives, I think it is also a good sell to older people who think Stalin every time they hear the world “socialism.” While I Don’t agree, people have been conditioned to freak out about Socialism and Big Government. Medicare For All and Green New Deal feed into that “Big Government” fear.

What if Bernie emphasizes the “Democratic” in “Democratic Socialism.” Talking about democracy in the workplace, user-owned cooperatives, worker-owned cooperatives, etc. Talking about putting the means of production and the profits with the people in transparent, democratic structures. And point out how the internet can be used to facilitate distributed ownership and management. It might help with the older and more conservative crowd.

So, the sell is “Economic Democracy”. Or maybe a People powered economy. But to sell this to the public we need short discussions and phrases. Here are some examples of Economic Democracy that Bernie could present that would be popular.

Idea #1 – User Owned Social Media Company
What is the users owned Facebook (I know there was a movement to democratize Twitter at one time). We could sell our own data. We would all get a cut of the profits. We could have a democratic, transparent ownership and management structure. Open source code. No more Zuckerbergs controlling content or news. This concept could be applied to other internet based companies.

Short phrases
1. You own Facebook
2. Everyone shares on the profits on Facebook
3. Democratic control of Content
4. A people powered social media platform

Idea #2 – Community Owned Banks
What is cities and states had their own banks. North Dakota does. What if these banks had a transparent, democratic management structure. What if instead of based on profits, these bank gave loans based on contributing to the public good: social and environmental causes. Bernie could discuss examples of people/groups that can’t get funding because they are not profitable, and then discuss how a people owned bank could (and provide examples).

Short phrases
1. A bank for the people
2. A bank for the betterment of the entire community not the wealthy

Historically, there were/are community banks in segregated/ethnic areas that supported community businesses.

Other ideas: Food Co-ops (food co-ops aren’t new), Energy Co-ops, Worker Co-ops, and this list goes on.

Anyway, I just wanted to put this idea out there and see if anyone else thinks this is a good idea besides me. Maybe this idea too complex in our media world, but I think if framed the right way it could give Bernie a boost….Maybe someone from the Bernie campaign will read it. I’m going to tweet about it @mixedbagrag if anyone wants to follow.

Share
up
15 users have voted.

Comments

Pluto's Republic's picture

However, community business restructuring wasn't what I expected when you introduced it as a way Bernie could differentiate himself from Elizabeth Warren. In fact, I am not aware that either of them have talked about collectivism or classic socialism. Have they mention starting coops or taking over factories? These are not economic sure things when competing with corporations employing underpaid foreign workers and poverty-trapped workers in the US.

Americans had once successfully established economic equality through regulations. This created a strong middle class that could buy a home and raise a family on a single salary. They could afford to educate their children, and everyone was confident that their children would surpass them economically. That lasted for nearly half a century. Economic equality was torn down shortly after the US lost the Vietnam War (and, significantly, the draft). The specific regulations that had created the upwardly mobile middle class — passed by FDR — were systematically targeted for deregulation, which handed the nation's economic gains back to the corporations to distribute. As if. The nation's antitrust laws were concurrently neutralized, allowing the corporations to form monopolies. Although monopolies do grave harm to the American people, they are great weapons for Empire builders. The entire process was all very banal and seeped in ignorance. The corporations subsequently distributed their burgeoning profits to compliant elected politicians, and they all came home millionaires and free-agents.

My assumption was that Bernie knew all this and would set about restoring the regulations that once made a strong and healthy society. If people wanted to buy the factories they worked for — well, go for it. They would certainly have the means to do so, once regulations were restored. There's nothing holding them back, in any case. The government has no role to play, other than taxing profits, closing loopholes, and offering small business loans. I figured a worker-owned business was just one organic byproduct of fair competition. These businesses are still corporations, like all the rest. They are under no obligation to cut prices or distribute profits to anyone other than shareholders.

Nonetheless, I do agree that Bernie's view should contrast more with Warren's. I think that will happen when the primaries begin, but it is important to get it right. When it comes to health care, I believe that is a concept that Bernie owns. The fact that all of his Dem opponents were forced to catch a ride on his coattails and address Medicare for All has been a boost to Bernie's credibility.

Also, people tend to overlook the fact that Medicare is a wildly popular health care plan. It is even embraced by the same demographic that embraced the Tea Party. Medicare is the best thing about getting old. Anyone who compares Medicare to a corporate-concocted health care insurance policy, would see that immediately — even before they looked at how little Medicare would cost them for so much more. The security and generosity Medicare brings to older individuals and their families is priceless. There is no reason for this to be a hard sell. The fact that it has become one is a bad sign. The campaign needs to kick out the political operatives and bring in the marketing geniuses to seal the deal.

Carry on with your project. I keep thinking people will see through the same old bait and switch with these Republican women passing themselves off as Progressives.

up
13 users have voted.

The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
Unabashed Liberal's picture

@Pluto's Republic

for Mr M and myself, any hard sell is not because we don't want the system to be shared by Everyone, it's because of the complete overhaul--including the funding mechanisms--which will result in the implementation of much stronger 'managed care' tools.

That's what many (not all) seniors might find objectionable. Granted, the proposed UMFA Bills would add some new services (which most beneficiaries would welcome, IMO)--but, by the very nature of the 'utilization management' tools which the Bills tout, other services would likely be more restricted.

Personally, would like to see the current TM/OM program amended to add these services. And, of course, the deductibles, co-pays, and/or co-insurance eliminated.

I could be wrong, but, don't believe that even a bunch of marketing geniuses would have the capability of swaying all current TM/OM beneficiaries that a 'managed care' system--compared to mostly a FFS model like TM's/OM's current configuration--would be more advantageous, or desirable.

Earlier, you mentioned that Medicare is wildly popular.

Yes, it is! Biggrin

But, I would argue that one of the primary reasons it's so popular is because of its current FFS structure, it's affordability (the Base program), and, the autonomy that TM/OM beneficiaries enjoy as a result of this model of coverage.

To me, it's a relief to know that a government, or private industry bureaucratic 'bean counter' somewhere won't dictate so-called 'utilization management' decisions--which can lead to a denial of service--due to a 'lump sum' payment/capitation fee/global budgeting system which is common to so-called managed care systems.

IMO, that would be a literal nightmare.

My question to the 8-10 lawmakers who've put forth various MFA and/or public option proposals, is,

"If all you're truly wanting to do is extend an already excellent public healthcare program to Everyone--why not just add various amendments to improve the program/add services, and, open it up to Everyone, at birth?"

BTW, I have no objection to either eliminating all insurance companies, or, just writing laws which make all insurers operate as non-profits (which they do in many European countries). That's a non-issue, to me.

Further, I consider the talk about the 'cost to the nation' to be a shiny object, or, distraction. The only 'costs' that will realistically matter to most folks, is what it costs them, personally.

And, whether or not they can 'afford' the costs imposed--without having to eat Cat Food, or, worse!

Pleasantry

Have a good one.

Mollie

I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive.
~~Gilda Radner, Comedienne

Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others.
~~Cicero

The obstacle is the path.
~~Zen Proverb

up
4 users have voted.

Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong.

Pluto's Republic's picture

@Unabashed Liberal

...to talk this out. If you watch regular TV, then you know that ALL the commercials at certain times of day are those selling MediCare Advantage Programs. Or giving them away free. They spell out all these benefits and luxuries, from free meals delivered to your home to fancy gym memberships, no out of pocket costs, free prescriptions, etc.

Medicare supplements policies are pretty much ignored in the gold rush.

Both are sold by private insurance companies. However, the Federal government pays the Insurers in full for the Medicare Advantage programs they sell. The Medicare Supplemental policies are not subsidized by the government in any way, and do not include prescription medications, which is yet another policy to buy.

The Medicare Advantage programs send patients to medical networks. I know you are not interested in those.

I bring this up only to say that these TV ads are very compelling. Those insurance company ads are selling Medicare to the public. I wonder if they realize that? It's a utopia. Thhis stands in stark contrast with the political push to demonize Medicare.

In any event, Medicare Advantage should be outlawed. The insurance companies make a fortune off those policies, which are pre-paid by the government. What they do is squeeze seniors into a network and give them discounts on vision or hearing. They could pick up the same discounts at AARP. As for prescriptions, GoodRx offers better discounts, and it's free already to everyone. (Actual Part D gives the most comprehensive discounts.) With Medicare for All, networks are unnecessary. Once drugs are finally negotiated at the federal level, prescriptions can be incorporated into Medicare. So, Part D can go away too. Medicare Advantage is simply a government giveaway for insurance companies, who then profit from pushing patients into narrow medical networks and denying them "extra's" like physical therapy. That needs to end now.

Medicare Supplemental policies currently eliminate deductibles and copays and other cost sharing. It's very straight forward. I have no problem with private insurers participating in some way in that market, where they can find coverage gaps. Those companies pay their own way.

Medicare for All changes nothing for patients. Implementing it nationwide could be invisible from the patient's point of view. The only change for them is a new insurance card, plus they no longer need to pay insurance premiums. Their insurance will never expire. Whatever they want will probably be covered. They can see any doctor and use any pharmacy.

What makes me impatient is the BS about costs and taxes. The bottomline is this: Last yearAmerica’s total medical costs hit a new record of $3.4 trillion. With Medicare for All in place, that number will be cut in half to $1.7 trillion, which puts the per capita medical costs in line with all other rich countries — for even better health care with better outcomes. The American people paid 100 percent of the $3.4 trillion last year out of their premiums and taxes.

"So, when the nation's health care costs cut in half," that does not mean you will "pay more for health care" because it comes out of taxes rather than premiums. What's wrong with the brains that think this way? A middle class family spends $10,000 per year for health insurance premiums. That money will remain in their bank. It's unlikely that their taxes will increase that much, especially when health care expenses are cut in half.

This is a link I found interesting:

JAMA Forum: Where Does the Health Insurance Premium Dollar Go?

up
10 users have voted.

The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
Unabashed Liberal's picture

@Pluto's Republic @Pluto's Republic

has many of the same 'managed care' components that are part of the private industry Medicare Advantage plans--utilization management tools, etc.

FFS models don't incorporate 'lump sum' payments to health care providers--hospitals, institutions, or individual providers.

The UMFA Bills also call for establishing a very, very restrictive, mostly generic formulary--which gives us some concern, considering Mr M's need for Tier 5 Specialty Drugs.

As I told Joe, we're starting to pack for a trip, so, don't have time to dig up any of my screenshots from Bernie's bill, right now (which I've already posted at EB). They illustrate some of the differences that I just referenced (between our current Traditional/Original Medicare program, and the proposed UMFA (Universal Medicare For All) program. Anyhoo, will try to re-post some of them later next week.

Anytime providers are not paid FFS, but in lump sums--capitation fees, global budgeting when it's an institution--what happens is that it's up to that entity to decide how much care they will provide. Of course, under a FFS system, since each service is billed, separately, there's no such decision to be made--as to which services are to be rendered, and, which are to be denied. (outside of the parameters of which medical services are covered, in the first place)

IMO, a government 'managed care' program would only be slightly better than the private industry Medicare Advantage programs.

Yes, the UMFA Bills are going to eliminate the 'networks' which are part of Medicare Advantage. But, as a TM/OM beneficiary, we don't have any, as it is. So, that's moot point for the approximately 40 million TM/OM beneficiaries. Granted, it likely would be an improvement for some in the private insurance market.

Regarding costs, guess we have the opposite view on that issue.

Since billions and trillions are concepts that are beyond the grasp of most folks (including myself) to conceptualize, I think that talking about how much the US spends as a country is just a shiny object--a flat-out distraction. Who cares? Let's get out of wars, and a single-payer system (for All) will be more than affordable.

What I want, and need a lawmaker to do is to lay out his/her plan for funding their proposal. IMO, that's the only way that anyone can make an informed judgment as to the viability and/or desirability of a single-payer proposal. And, IMO, it's also the only way that an individual can make a judgment as to what their costs will be.

Guess you could say, for someone to 'sell it to me,' they need to show me how'd I benefit from it.

Remember, even PNHP spells out that there will be winners and losers. No medical system can be radically overhauled--including the financing model--without major displacements/changes. For some, the results will likely be positive; for others, not so much.

OF course, under the current Medicare system, one reason for the low costs is that every beneficiary bears some cost.

This is achieved because low income folks have their portion of the cost (which is a premium, not a tax) paid for by the government. Technically, the funds that pay for these MSPs are Medicaid monies.

(Not sure why that is, but, that's how it works. They are put in the Medicare system, on behalf of low income beneficiaries, so they can participate in the program.)

But, under the new proposed UMFA Bills, the model is the ACA-funding model. Remember, most of the blow back due to the ACA Exchanges/Model was because of the promises that Everyone would save thousands--which was not true. (See videos, below.)

Guess that's why I was glad to see Warren come up with a proposal of so-called 'pay fors.' For sure, I'm definitely not a major fan of hers. But, her willingness to be transparent was appreciated (by me).

Listen to O's BS about the ACA,

and,

I do agree about the necessity for a Public Forum, or Roundtable. But, don't see anything happening, that would actually give a true representation to the People. IOW, it would probably be made up of folks who have a partisan interest (I fear). And, who do no more than spout Simple Simon party-line talking points.

Hey, I'll definitely be all ears, if anything like that should develop. Unfortunately, since lawmakers haven't proposed eliminating their own 'practically free' OAP health care program--they are, and will remain immune from any proposals they make. (Cost - roughly $600 annually, nothing OOP.)

IMO, if any of the 8-10 proposed plans MFA/Public Option plans are that hot--lawmakers should commit to doing away with the OAP program.

Then, maybe I'll trust that they have my, and my fellow Americans' best interest at heart.

In the meantime, wish that lawmakers would amend our 1965 Medicare program. There would be much less of an opportunity for them to make mischief, by stealthily transitioning to a managed care program.

(I suspect that's what the entire thing is really about, but, they obviously won't say it.)

Everyone have a nice evening.

[Edited: Added brackets; replaced 'not' with 'no'; corrected lousy syntax.]

PleasantryMollie

I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive.
~~Gilda Radner, Comedienne

Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others.
~~Cicero

The obstacle is the path.
~~Zen Proverb

up
1 user has voted.

Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong.

snoopydawg's picture

@Pluto's Republic

This is very knowledgeable. I wish there was a way to get this information out to the public. Found this inside the article you linked.

Those Indecipherable Medical Bills? They’re One Reason Health Care Costs So Much

But all of those individual price increases have been enabled — indeed, aided and abetted — by the complex system of billing and coding that underlies bills like those sent to Wickizer. That system, with its lines of alphanumeric codes and arcane medical abbreviations, has given birth to a gigantic new industry of consultants, armies of back-room experts whom medical providers and insurance companies deploy against each other in an endless war over which medical procedures were undertaken and how much to pay for them. Caught in the crossfire are Americans like Wanda Wickizer, left with huge bills and indecipherable explanations in languages they cannot possibly understand.

This talks about how insurance companies, doctors and hospitals all negotiate over prices.

Studies have shown that hospitals charge patients who are uninsured or self-pay 2.5 times more than they charge those covered by health insurance (who are billed negotiated rates) and three times more than the amount allowed by Medicare. That gap has grown considerably since the 1980s.

This was discussed in the other essay here on MFA. The amount of time doctors have to spend on billing and other insurance issues is what is driving our health care costs so high. A whole cottage industry for billing and coding has cropped up. I remember when I went to a doctor and didn't have to worry about the final bill. This changed in the 80's and two days before I had my facial reconstruction my insurance company told me that they weren't going to pay for it. Some dumb reason but still. I was looking forward to getting out of pain and it was very yucky dealing with it.

up
5 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

snoopydawg's picture

@snoopydawg

It's the biggest reason why we need MFA and it's also the biggest reason why congress is so set against it. The insurance and pharmaceutical companies are making too damn much money taking advantage of us.

The patient Wickizer’s case is just one example out of millions that showed how bad the system is setup to screw us. She was initially charged close to $400,000 when her team of billing experts said that it should have only been $60,000. But instead of working with her to pay the bill she felt she owed the hospital hired an outside firm to argue with her team.

Hiring experts is one reason worker's comp insurance is so bad. Take just my case. I was injured for the 3rd time by moving patients. The first 2 I lost no time, but the 3rd one was much different and much worse. I continued working for 8 months while continuing to get worse until I could barely walk which was when my doctor took me off work. We had fought for treatment but were denied at every step. Instead of taking my injury seriously the insurance company started sending me to their doctors who said nothing was wrong. Fortunately for me my doctor had time to go through their reports and tear them apart. After each visit we went to court and the judge would rule in my favor. But instead of following my doctor's advice for treatment they sent me to another doctor and the process started over again. This went on for 5 years. Back and forth we went. I continued walking so I wouldn't get worse which can often happen. Instead of the insurance company seeing I'm trying to take care of myself they hired a private investigator to film my walks. What did they show? Me walking with difficulty. Case closed? Nope..back to court, doctors, more filming..until finally a judge said ENOUGH. I finally had surgery which helped my back pain, but since it had taken so long the injury to a nerve in my back was permanent and it had caused me to loose function in my leg. I lost my career that I loved and spent so much time learning how to do. And was left in permanent pain. I used to be very active. You name it I did it. Now I'm just thankful that I can still walk every day. But why does anyone have to go through that?

The insurance company probably spent more money on their bogus doctors and defense attorneys and everything else they paid for than just fixing me at 6 weeks when my doctor told them that there were serious problems. Now add in the cost for the court system. Judges and every person involved in the system. The building and every one who works there down to the cleaning crews. A sane health care plan would end all of that wasted money. And time. The jobs for the court system? I don't know. But it still has to be better than what we have now. Too many people are dying from a basic human right. For money. How utterly wrong is this?

up
5 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

@snoopydawg
There is nothing -- nothing -- that would do more to help businesses across the US thrive (both small and large), than a single-payer universal healthcare system. Worker gets hurt? No problem, they go to the doctor for the appropriate treatment -- and as long as there's no permanent disability, the employer doesn't have to worry about fighting them over worker's comp.

We know that access to proper preventative care and early-intervention means healthier workers, higher productivity while at work, fewer workdays lost to illness and injury. We know that one of the biggest obstacles to running a small business is the cost of health insurance -- how can you afford to hire someone if they need $20k a year just to buy healthcare? We know that large businesses spend incredible amounts of money on their health plans, not least because they need to in order to attract the best employees. We know that businesses would be better off with a smaller staff made up of full-time employees, rather than a larger staff made up of part-time employees (whose hours are kept below the necessary thresholds to qualify for healthcare). We know that the largest factor in skyrocketing education costs (making training/retraining expenses prohibitive) is the cost of providing healthcare to the faculty, admin, and maintenance staffs.

Yet the political agenda of entrepreneurs and corporate moguls alike is to shoot themselves in the face, over and over, by supporting the election of republicans and democrats who bleat "SOCIAMALISM! SOCIAMALISM!" in response to any suggestion of universal single-payer healthcare.

up
6 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

Pluto's Republic's picture

@UntimelyRippd

Politicians do what they do because businesses pay them to do it. That includes blocking universal healthcare.

US businesses compete internationally with foreign businesses that do not carry the retail healthcare costs of their workers in their bottom line. They know this. And while foreign competitors do pay a share of national health care in their taxes, those costs are significantly lower than the cost of buying each employee an individual insurance policy. Add to that the fact that per capita healthcare costs in the US are double that of any other nation we do business with. There must be an upside to keep this going.

If businesses wanted out of that arrangement, it would have happened a long time ago. In fact, US corporations and businesses fight to maintain these life-or-death contracts with their employees. This creates a constant tension that runs through the employer/worker relationship. The US has weak labor laws and the poorest unemployment of any developed nation. But workers become very compliant and they are willing to overlook abuses when the Sword of Damocles hangs over their family's heads. Losing that insurance can spell serious disaster for a worker. It can be too expensive to buy insurance in the open market, more-so when you are unemployed. American workers are conditioned to feel a looming insecurity, which is an ever-present threat in American work-life. Americans don't think of health care or food or shelter from the elements as human rights. They are isolated from the rest of the world and see only what they are shown.

People have a hard time understanding health care systems and how they operate. They've been healthcare hostages for most of their lives. The topic can trigger irrational fears — which makes it easy for businesses and insurers to continue exploiting them.

It's amazing that Bernie has brought the People this far. I bet Bernie never thought he would live to see this. It's a perfect storm. As long as he remain BOLD, he can lead them toward to economic security. That's the way it seems to be shaping up.

up
4 users have voted.

The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus

@Pluto's Republic
My observation is that a devotion to ideology combined with a pathological hunger for complete control renders US business of incapable of recognizing that the healthcare industry is a gigantic vampire, sucking all other American commerce dry.

up
4 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

@snoopydawg “Studies have shown that hospitals charge patients who are uninsured or self-pay 2.5 times more than they charge those covered by health insurance (who are billed negotiated rates) and three times more than the amount allowed by Medicare.”

When I spent two days in the hospital back in 2011, the charges were ten times Medicare reimbursement. I spent months fighting before they gave up.

up
5 users have voted.

We know that she won’t follow though if she wins....

We don't know that. We don't know much about what any of the candidates will try to do until they get elected. And then they have to face a Congress that might be hostile.

But as I have said before if Medicare for All was is not popular with the Republicans in the senate. If it were, they would pass it. Have they done that? It is not popular enough with them to do it with Trump as President. Would they do it for Bernie? Or Warren? Or anyone else?

The ACA passed with a bunch of shenanigans by the senate when the Democrats had a majority. It took shenanigans to get it done. We don't have the numbers in the senate to even make it close enough for shenanigans to get us over the hump.

I would love to have M4A. I just don't see it happening without a big change in the senate and keeping the House while we are at it.

up
2 users have voted.

@davidgmillsatty "we know she won't follow through" is a bit too easy and cynical. All we know is usually precise plans offered in the campaign tend to get changed or watered down once in office, when votes are needed and it's a question of getting most of the bill or nothing.

Of course the watering down has its limits, especially when key campaign promises are lightly tossed aside just to get any barebones bill passed, as with Obama's ACA. But that was the eager-to-compromise and give the store away Obama, who seemed more interested in making friends with the other side than in getting important progressive legislation passed.

Far more important to contemplate is how such campaign promises could be enacted through Congress, even with a decent Dem majority. Just look at the senate half dozen Dem negative responses, mostly from centrists, re Warren's M4A plan. A reminder that even with a D majority in Congress, it won't necessarily be a progressive majority. It will take aggressively using the bully pulpit, going directly to the people, along with inside maneuvering to get things done. On this, Bernie is on the right track to suggest getting the masses informed and energized to put pressure on their reluctant reps, make them worry about reelection if they oppose. This is something nice guy to a fault Obama shied away from doing.

up
2 users have voted.
Wally's picture

@wokkamile

On this, Bernie is on the right track to suggest getting the masses informed and energized to put pressure on their reluctant reps, make them worry about reelection if they oppose. This is something nice guy to a fault Obama shied away from doing.

Bernie has made it clear that as president, he will travel to a congressperson's district to use the bullypulpit and focus attention on the vote. And then the critical mass element comes into play. I think there's no way denying that Bernie has been able to mobilize the biggest socialist/left critical mass in U.S. history. If left-minded folks can't coalesce around that and ensure that he is the nominee and elected president, oh well, such is life.

So the point I'm making is that the biggest roadblock to legislating M4A -- and intituting at least saner foreign policies and much more -- is not having a president who will fight for the stuff leftists pretty much agree upon (like not voting for and increasing already expanding mlitary budgets).

up
2 users have voted.

@Wally @Wally She is from a very low to middle class background. She graduates from a public university (University of Houston) for undergraduate and then from another public university (Rutgers) for law school. She teaches law at the public universities of University of Houston, then the public law school of the University of Texas, then the public University of Michigan, before moving on to the private Universities of Penn and Harvard.

Bernie went to the University of Chicago, a private university.

Private Universities are associated with the upper class; public universities are associated with the middle class. And Warren has spent most of her life in the universities of the middle class; not the universities of the upper class.

So what does that say about the two of them? I really don't know. But I have a hard time thinking that Warren is a part of the upper class, even though she did spend a couple of years at George Washington as undergraduate and later taught at Penn and Harvard (at Harvard she was the only faculty member with a public school law degree). And I think that is why she is so mistrusted by Wall Street, even more than Bernie.

I find her support by the public fascinating. She is this election's surprise. All of the recent presidents from Clinton till now have been graduates or prestigious private universities. Bernie would follow suit. Warren would change that.

up
0 users have voted.

@davidgmillsatty . You write,

She is from a very low to middle class background. She graduates from a public university (University of Houston) for undergraduate and then from another public university (Rutgers) for law school. She teaches law at the public universities of University of Houston, then the public law school of the University of Texas, then the public University of Michigan, before moving on to the private Universities of Penn and Harvard.

Bernie went to the University of Chicago, a private university.

Private Universities are associated with the upper class; public universities are associated with the middle class. And Warren has spent most of her life in the universities of the middle class; not the universities of the upper class.

So what does that say about the two of them?

Well it seems to say something, but the truth is, neither Warren nor Bernie were from privileged upper middle class families. However, Bernie's family seem to have been the poorer of the two. Warren's early childhood was spent in a small one-story house in Norman, OK, and when she turned 11, the family bought a two-story colonial style house in Oklahoma City. Photos of both houses can be seen here: https://news.yahoo.com/exploring-elizabeth-warrens-okie-roots-153323346..... The family had two cars, and in high school, Elizabeth drove her own little MG.

Bernie lived his entire childhood in a small rent-controlled apartment in Brooklyn. His parents were both Jewish immigrants who had lost their families in the holocaust. His father arrived in the U.S. from Poland at age 16 with no money, little education, and not much English. He father found employment as a paint salesman, and according to Bernie's older brother, the family struggled to afford things like a new rug or new curtains. His mother's dream was to someday live in a house with a yard, but she died shortly after Bernie graduated from high school, and Bernie's father died a few years later. Bernie attended public schools, went to Brooklyn College (public) for his first year and then transferred to the U. of Chicago. I don't know how expensive it was, how he paid for it, if he perhaps had an athletic or student activist scholarship or just worked his way through. But for sure his parents couldn't help.

The Net Worth Portal places Elizabeth Warren's net worth at about $18 million https://thenetworthportal.com/wiki-2018-2019-2020-2021/politician/elizab... and Bernie Sanders' net worth at about $1 million https://thenetworthportal.com/wiki-2018-2019-2020-2021/politician/bernie...

Oh, and while reading these tidbits about their early lives, I was amused to see that Warren has said that her father's parents had difficulty accepting her mother because of the Native American heritage. https://news.yahoo.com/exploring-elizabeth-warrens-okie-roots-153323346....

Another thing stands out -- Warren enhances her image with stories of her early poverty and personal struggle, while Bernie merely says that his family's financial insecurity helped turn his attention to the struggle of the lower classes in this country. Bernie began his lifelong fight for social justice and economic fairness back in high school. He was always an empathetic idealist.

up
2 users have voted.

@laurel That may be. But he went to an elite private university. Bill Clinton came from a very poor family as well and he went to an elite private university. I really was complaining more about the elite educations, regardless of class. Warren is unusual in that she did not have such an education although she later began teaching in them. I pretty much know about Sanders' background since I supported him in 2016.

As for their net worth, it is a pittance compared to the campaign donations they have been getting. Sanders still leads the field in donations.

up
0 users have voted.

Selling the people powered economy could get some traction.
(Not from the MSM mind you)
How many years before it takes hold?

The idea of USPS offering basic banking services in local
communities has been floated for years. Great idea.
No traction.

Co-ops work for the community involved.
Perhaps if the Bern were to bring this up
(basic one liners) many times over, it would resonate.

The mantra becomes a byline. The media giants tend to
co-opt these trends and twist it around to an attack.
On mom, apple pie and chevorlet.

Spine stiffening resolve.

up
7 users have voted.

May we be united and strong -- laurel

@QMS https://berniesanders.com/issues/fair-banking-for-all/ and now AOC has joined him https://observer.com/2019/05/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-and-bernie-sanders.... It's a wonderful, simple, workable idea. And as this short article points out,

https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2015/10/bernie-sanders-lets...

it's used in nearly all the world's national postal systems and was used here in the U.S. from 1910 to 1967. I love this old-timey kind of "socialism" where services are shared and enjoyed in simple, down-to-earth ways. I think it makes us better people, more connected to and aware of others.

up
3 users have voted.
Hawkfish's picture

is the idea behind Jaron Lanier’s book Who Owns The Future.

up
5 users have voted.

We can’t save the world by playing by the rules, because the rules have to be changed.
- Greta Thunberg

Mark from Queens's picture

to counteract the battering that Capitalism's been taking these days.

Thinks "if we just change 'capitalism' to 'economic freedom' we can begin duping all these suckers again, like in the good ole days before these know-nothing millenials began going for Socialism 2 to 1." The world is passing by these out of touch, old, rich, white media pundits.

The fucking hard truth, ironically, is that Socialism would indeed bring economic freedom to people. Once you start explaining to the average working joe how much their lives are controlled by business monopolies and how little freedom they truly have they start to get it. It's capitalism that ends this way and this way only: with concentrated wealth in the hands of a few. Before you know it they're talking about nationalizing sectors upon which we all rely. It's really pretty simple, once explained how much of our lives are dictated to by monopolies.

Most obviously, not having healthcare bills and student debt is truly economic freedom. Owing a gun is not freedom; that's free-dumb. The RW have been duped for so long. They just need some common sense talking-to.

He ain't looking too good either, is he? The specter of Socialism held in such high regard with Millenials has got him on the run.

Socialism = Economic Freedom.

I think we should take it.

Thanks, Frank.

up
6 users have voted.

"If I should ever die, God forbid, let this be my epitaph:

THE ONLY PROOF HE NEEDED
FOR THE EXISTENCE OF GOD
WAS MUSIC"

- Kurt Vonnegut

and how your mind works. Your head's in the right place and I hope you stay forward-looking, inspired, and creative. Might be good for you to hook up with some really nice, energetic folks like yourself. Have you heard of The People's Party? They are endorsed by some of my favorite activists and they're trying to get a new third party launched, one that works for us! Check them out at the link. Could be a very good match!

up
1 user has voted.