In this episode I address the troubling new revelations regarding the extent the DOJ went to in order to hide the Clinton corruption. I also address the real reason that the Democrats are putting Michael Cohen behind closed doors. Finally, I address a series of liberal lies about “Medicare for all.”
Fox News points out that during a CNN town hall last night, Sanders was asked why he has “stopped short” of calling Maduro a “dictator.” The Senator replied, “I think it’s fair to say that the last election was undemocratic, but there are still democratic operations taking place in that country. The point is, what I’m calling for right now is internationally supervised fair elections.”
He quickly pivoted to criticizing President Trump, and even called him “authoritarian” for enacting a national emergency to build the wall along the southern border.
For the full story, click HERE.
Vermont Senator and 2020 presidential candidate Bernie Sanders repeatedly requested the use of a “carbon-spewing private jet” when he was a surrogate for the Clinton campaign during the 2016 presidential election, according to a Politico report.
Despite his constant criticisms of billionaires, fossil fuels and private jets, Sanders requested a private jet “every time” he traveled on behalf of the Clinton campaign, according to former Clinton staffers who say his extravagant travel cost them at least $100,000
According to the report, in which six former Clinton staffers spoke to the publication, Sanders’ “preferred mode of travel quickly emerged as a point of tension.”
“We would try to fight it as much as possible because of cost and availability of planes, but they would request [a jet] every time. We would always try to push for commercial. … At the campaign, you’re constantly trying to save like 25 cents,” one anonymous Clinton campaign source said.
Former Clinton campaign director of rapid response Zac Petkanas called Sanders, “his Royal Majesty King Bernie Sanders.”
“I’m not shocked that while thousands of volunteers braved the heat and cold to knock on doors until their fingers bled in a desperate effort to stop Donald Trump, his Royal Majesty King Bernie Sanders would only deign to leave his plush D.C. office or his brand new second home on the lake if he was flown around on a cushy private jet like a billionaire master of the universe,” said Petkanas.
For the full report, click HERE.
The politics of so-called “democratic” socialism can best be described as “Santa Claus economics.”
Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and those ideologically aligned with them routinely tout the high public support for the various cradle-to-grave social programs they support. And they are correct – if you ask people if they want free college, free daycare, free healthcare, etc., they’re probably going to say yes. And that’s hardly surprising. If you polled a group of middle-school aged boys whether or not they approved of a “free Xbox” policy, you’d see similar levels of support. You could also expect to see support fall like a rock if it were funded by an annual $300 allowance tax.
Due to fiscal reality, it’s truly no wonder that socialists routinely frame politics as “the rich vs. the rest of us,” to help give the impression that if only we taxed the rich a little more, all of society’s problems could be alleviated. As I’ve pointed out in another article, even taxing 100% of income above $1 million wouldn’t fund a quarter of Ocasio-Cortez’s agenda. Sanders and Cortez will point to Scandinavia as a shining example of countries that have implemented the sort of policies they desire – but never seem to mention that the bottom income tax bracket in Denmark and Sweden exceeds 30%, and there’s a national sales tax of 25%. (I wonder why!).
Despite how high taxes in America are, we do enjoy low taxes relative to most of the developed world and have a public with a general disdain towards taxation. It’s for that reason that despite all the polls showing the popularity of individual socialist programs, or socialism as a whole (particularly among millennials), I don’t believe Americans are as receptive to socialism as the left would like you to think.
To turn most self-described socialists into capitalists you really only need to ask one question; would you yourself be willing to pay more?
Medicare For All – Popular Proposal, Unpopular Price Tag
According to Ocasio-Cortez, there is 70% support for Medicare for all. Politifact rated her claim “half-true,” noting that polls vary (with some confirming her assertion). But as was reported in the website of the journal Health Affairs:
Claims of broad support for Medicare for All are largely overstated. A great deal of media coverage was devoted to one recent poll in particular, in which 70 percent of respondents (including 52 percent of Republicans) either strongly or somewhat supported providing Medicare to every American. Polls such as these tend to find support for the phrase “Medicare for All,” which crumbles when explained or clarified. For example, the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) found that 62 percent of Americans support Medicare for all, yet only 48 percent prefer the synonymous “single-payer health insurance system.” When respondents were told that it would require increased taxes, only 34 percent still favored Medicare for all. This finding was replicated in a recent Politico/Harvard poll.
Once taxes are brought into the equation, nearly as many people oppose Medicare for all as Ocasio-Cortez boasted support it. Oops.
Paid Family Leave
“Every other major country has family paid leave,” said Bernie Sanders during one of the CNN Democratic Presidential debates, in an attempt to shame America into adopting such a policy. According to one poll, there’s an incredible 75% support for paid family leave, so Bernie certainly planted his flag in a popular issue. And if only he never mentions the cost of such a program, he could have success in advancing it. According to the Washington Times, support falls even more drastically than for Medicare for all once the cost is included.
At $450 in higher taxes every year — the minimum price for a small-scale federal program — fewer than half of Americans support paid family leave. Actual costs would likely run much higher. The Heritage Foundation estimates that a 12-week leave program with benefits equal to 45 percent of pay would cost the typical household $570 in taxes per year. For full wage benefits, the cost soars to $1,300.
Since most Americans don’t want tax hikes of that magnitude, why not pay for the program by cutting spending elsewhere — say, in other entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare? The Cato Institute found even less support — only 21 percent — for that option.
I chose Medicare for all (or “socialized medicine”) and paid family leave as two programs to highlight because they’re the most commonly cited examples of social programs that “every other (advanced) nation already has.” While Bernie would like to paint a narrative that it’s the interests of millionaires and billionaires preventing the government from passing such grandiose programs, it’s American’s own frugality and disdain towards taxes doing that.
Which brings me to my final point…
Most Socialists Don’t Know What Socialism Is
While I’ve been focussing exclusively on polling relating to social program so far, what about claims that millennial support for socialism is rising? According to Gallup, 57% of Democrats and 51% of young people have a favorable view of socialism.
In reality, it’s not necessarily a positive view of socialism that they all share, but a positive view of what they think socialism is. As Tony Mecia noted:
[When] Gallup asked Americans to define “socialism,” The most popular response was “equality” (23 percent). In second place was the traditional definition, “government ownership or control” (17 percent). Providing enhanced benefits and services came in third at 10 percent. Six percent defined socialism as “talking to people” or “being social,” which means 4 out of 10 Americans think socialism is just some form of making nice.
So socialists apparently don’t even know what they believe – which makes sense to anyone that’s ever conversed with one before.
In this episode I address the constantly changing stories by the anti-Trump schemers and why they all vindicate President Trump. I also address the hypocritical campaign of Bernie Sanders, who remains a one-percenter. Finally, I address a massive error by the CBO that should be headline news.
In a piece titled, “Lifestyles of the Rich and Socialist”, Fox News points out that Sanders has a “high-end income, multiple houses and fondness for air travel.”
“Sanders has raised eyebrows over his spending and personal wealth. Notably, he owns three houses. In 2016, he bought a $575,000 four-bedroom lake-front home in his home state. This is in addition to a row house in Washington D.C., as well as a house in Burlington, Vermont,” writes Fox.
The Senator also earned more than $1 million in 2017, with almost $900,000 coming from his book on his 2016 presidential run.
Sanders also issues impassioned pleas for Americans to limit environmental pollution–and yet–in October, he spent over $300,000 on air travel to tour the country and speak to audiences ahead of the midterm elections.
For the full report, click HERE.
National Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany posted the campaign statement on Twitter, which reads, “Bernie Sanders has already won the debate in the Democrat primary, because every candidate is embracing his brand of socialism. But the American people will reject an agenda of sky-high tax rates, government-run health care and coddling dictators like those in Venezuela. Only President Trump will keep America free, prosperous and safe.”
Sanders made his announcement this morning in an email to supporters, writing, “I’m running for president because, now more than ever, we need leadership that brings us together — not divides us up. Women and men, black, white, Latino, Native American, Asian American, gay and straight, young and old, native born and immigrant. Now is the time for us to stand together.”
Unsurprisingly, the senator also took aim at President Trump, writing that he is “the most dangerous president in modern American history.”
Yesterday, McConnell told reporters, “I’ve noted with great interest the Green New Deal. And we’re going to be voting on that in the Senate. We’ll give everybody an opportunity to go on record and see how they feel about the Green New Deal.”
The Green New Deal proposal has come under fire by many on the right for its unrealistic and radical agenda and embarrassing “frequently asked questions” (FAQ) paper.
The FAQ document–which has since been scrubbed from Ocasio-Cortez’s website–promised to make air travel “unnecessary,” guaranteed a job for every person in America, and “economic security” for those “unwilling” to work.
The FAQ document also tackled the dire issue of “farting cows.” It states, “We set a goal to get to net-zero, rather than zero emissions, in 10 years because we aren’t sure that we’ll be able to fully get rid of farting cows and airplanes that fast.”
Even House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) seemed dismissive of the plan, telling Politico last week, “It will be one of several or maybe many suggestions that we receive. The green dream, or whatever they call it, nobody knows what it is, but they’re for it, right?”
Fox News points out that the Senate vote will have implications for Democrats running in the 2020 presidential race:
“But McConnell’s move to bring the plan to a vote on the Senate floor will be a key test for Democratic presidential candidates such as Sens. Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, who are running on the progressive platform in 2020.
While backing of the far-left proposal will ultimately improve their liberal bona fides and their support from the Democratic base, the support of the plan will undoubtedly be the target of attacks during the general election.”
In this episode I address the radical, and economically destructive, costs of this new generation of Democrats’ big government plans.
A lifelong socialist, Bernie Sanders decided to do some rebranding during his 2016 presidential campaign. No longer was he a socialist, he’s now a “democratic-socialist” (which I suppose sounds better). “When I talk about democratic socialism, I’m not looking at Venezuela. I’m not looking at Cuba. I’m looking at countries like Denmark and Sweden.” Bernie declared during the presidential primaries.
I’ll ignore the fact that Bernie has consistently praised Cuba in the past, and in 2011 wrote that “These days, the American dream is more apt to be realized in South America, in places such as Ecuador, Venezuela and Argentina,” and turn my attention towards his new model for socialism: Scandinavia.
Scandinavian “Socialism”: The Offerings
It must first be clarified that Scandinavian countries (Sweden, Denmark, and Norway) are not socialist. They are capitalist countries that impose excessive levels of taxation on their citizens to fund a wide array of social programs. Those programs include:
- “Free” government funded healthcare through single-payer healthcare systems
- Generous government funded maternal and paternal leave
- Heavily subsidized higher education, free of tuition to all students (and in Norway, to international students as well)
- Generous paid sick leave
And all these programs are extremely popular when you poll American voters on them – but that’s meaningless. Anything that appears “free” polls extremely well – until the public realizes that they have to pony up for “free.”
Scandinavian “Socialism”: The Cost
The large welfare states of Scandinavia are not without their cost. In 2017, all three countries had levels of taxation exceeding half of every dollar earned. Taxes as a percent of GDP are:
- 50.7% in Sweden
- 53.5% in Denmark
- 54.7% in Norway
Listen to Bernie’s rhetoric and you’d get the impression that it’s “millionaires and billionaires” ponying up most of those funds – but they aren’t in Scandinavia. While the Tax Foundation found that in 2017 the top 10% of American households paid 70.6% of the taxes, there is no Robin Hood in Scandinavia.
In America, an earner isn’t subject to the top tax bracket of 37% until they earn over $500,000. While an American would need to earn eight times the average income to be subject to our top tax bracket, the figures are only 1.5 times average income in Sweden, 1.6 in Norway, and 1.3 in Denmark (source: pages 30-31).
So, how would America’s tax system look if it were more like Scandinavia’s?
- If the U.S. tax code was as flat as Denmark’s, someone earning roughly $70,000 would face a top marginal tax rate of 46.3% (source: page 30). That’s simply the first layer of taxation, as all Scandinavian countries have a 25% value-added tax on purchases (the equivalent of a sales tax).
- Even after accounting for the dollar value of transfer payments and other government benefits, a single-income couple earning the average wage with two children will pay an average personal income tax rate of 22% in the Nordic countries (counting government transfers as a negative tax), as compared to a rate of 14.2% in the United States. Across all family types, the average American family earning the average wage would pay $2,000-$5,000 more in taxes each year (net of the value of any transfer payments) than a Nordic family. Note that this comparison is of Nordic countries (Scandinavia plus Finland and Iceland). (Source: page 31).
And despite all the “freebies” in Scandinavia, Americans consume much more. According to an analysis of OECD consumption data by the White House (source: page 36), average consumption per person is:
- 31% lower in Denmark than in the United States
- 32% lower in Sweden than in the United States
- 18% lower in Norway than in the United States
And on that note, it should come to little surprise that….
Scandinavians Perform Better in America Than in Scandinavia
The success of Scandinavian economies is despite their generous tax-and-spend policies, not because of them. You can thank the Scandinavian work ethic for their success – not the laws of economics being suspended.
There are over 10 million Americans with Scandinavian ancestry (most of which are the descendants of immigrants), and they far economically outperform their counterparts across the Atlantic.
There is, unfortunately, a lack of global household income data, and thus, the most recent information available is from a 2013 Gallup study of global household incomes. They found the median household incomes, purchasing power adjusted to be the following in 2012:
- Norway: $51,489
- Sweden: $50,514
- Denmark: $44,360
The figures are the following median incomes for households of Americans with Scandinavian ancestry in 2012 are as follows:
- Norwegian American $62,155 (21% higher)
- Swedish American $62,295 (23% higher)
- Danish American $63,630 (43% higher)
Additionally, the Census listed a group identifying themselves as “Scandinavian Americans,” who earned a median household income of $67,421 in 2012. The median household income of all Americans in 2012 was $51,371.
And the real kicker? These figures are not adjusted for differences in taxation. Not only do Scandinavian Americans far outperform Scandinavians economically, but they also get to keep a larger chunk of a larger pie.