Tag: Bernie Sanders

Would That He Were President Elect

While Joe Biden signed off regarding making the direct payments so miserly in the stimulus bill, Bernie Sanders is promising a filibuster of the veto override of the Defense Authorization Bill, which would delay the vote for at least 3 days, unless the house bill to raise payments to $2000.00 gets an up or down vote in the Senate.

I get that the Democratic Party establishment (There is no Democratic Party establishment) came together with a zeal and a competence that is never seen opposing wars, or ill-guided tax cuts, or genocide, and anointed Biden, but Bernie is still being Bernie:

For most of the last few decades, budget standoffs in Washington tended to follow the same script: Republicans threatened to block some domestic spending bill or fully shut down the government unless Democrats agreed to let the GOP own the libs with something bad like a JPMorgan giveaway, a tax break for the rich or a draconian cut to a social program.

When Democrats controlled Congress, they never mustered the courage to respond with their own version of the same shrewd tactics. Even toward the end of the Bush era when the Iraq War was deeply unpopular, they never made a serious attempt to hold up a bloated GOP-written Pentagon bill in order to try to get their way on a progressive initiative.

But at the end of one of the worst years in recent history, it seems things are changing.

In a long overdue script-flipping move, Sen. Bernie Sanders is now moving to halt a major defense bill until and unless Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell allows a full vote on legislation to give millions of starving Americans $2,000 in emergency aid. That legislation passed the House yesterday over opposition from a majority of House Republicans, who tried their best to deny their own constituents much-needed aid.

Now the bill is in McConnell’s hands, and Sanders is pulling a McConnell on McConnell. He is imperiling the GOP boss’s top priority — the defense bill that authorizes pay increases for soldiers, military training, new weapons systems, while also complicating attempts to draw down troops deployed in Afghanistan. That McConnell-backed legislation could be stalled unless he agrees to Sanders’ demands and stops obstructing a progressive priority.

Sanders could keep the Senate in session until New Years Day, limiting the ability of corrupt Georgia Senators Purdue and Loeffler to campaign in the runup to the runoff.

 I am heartened by this, but I expect the Democrats to figure out a way to capitulate, because that is what Democrats do, particularly in the Senate, and particularly under the leader ship of Chuck Schumer.

I So Wish that Sanders Were the Nominee

Elon Musk, welfare queen and libertarian, decided to go after Bernie Sanders’ proposal for a wealth tax, Sanders notes that most of Musk’s wealth is from government subsidies. (Literally, Tesla would not have generated a penny of profit without the various subsidies that it has benefited from and resold)

Elon Musk believes that everyone should have the initiative that he had, and inherit an emerald mine:

Bernie Sanders showed Friday he isn’t afraid to call out hypocrisy – particularly when it comes from someone like Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

Musk on Friday tweeted out a meme critical of Sanders and his brand of socialism. The tweet was in response to an article about a bill Sanders introduced Thursday that would place a 60% tax on the wealth gained by billionaires such as Musk during the coronavirus pandemic. The meme, dubbed the “Official Bernie Sanders drinking game!” showed a picture of Sanders along with the text: “Every time the Bernster mentions a free government program, chug somebody else’s beer.”

Sanders, who’s no neophyte when it comes to defending his leftist views and programs, wasn’t about to back down from such criticism. In a tweeted response, he called out Musk for benefiting to the tune of billions of dollars from government subsidies and linked to an article from The Los Angeles Times that detailed the assistance Musk and his companies have received.

“Every time Elon Musk pokes fun at government assistance for the 99%, remember that he would be worth nothing without $US4.9 billion in corporate welfare,” Sanders wrote. “Oh, Elon just l-o-v-e-s corporate socialism for himself, rugged capitalism for everyone else.”

Elon Musk is one disfiguring accident away from being a super-villain.

Don’t Make Bernie Angry, You Wouldn’t Like It When He’s Angry

Some of staffers fro Bernie Sanders’ now suspended Presidential campaign set up a PAC.

Bernie Sanders HATES PACs, and so was unamused when they used one of his slogans to name it.

Bernie has gotten them to change the name, and reports that Sanders loudly expressed his displeasure to the people who set up the organization.

All things considered, I think that this is an attempt by those staffers to generate some consulting fees off of Bernie supporters, so I am not surprised that he was unamused:

When a bunch of Bernie staffers formed a super PAC name-checking his old slogan “Future to Believe In,” he was none too pleased given his well-known hatred of groups that skirt campaign finance limits. So, they changed the name.

The group will now be known as America’s Promise PAC. The change was filed with the Federal Election Commission on Tuesday.

“We wanted to be as clear as possible that there is no association between the PAC and the senator,” super PAC head and Sanders adviser Jeff Weaver told VICE News.


But Sanders has also spent the better part of his career crusading against “the millionaires and billionaires” looking to buy political power — and had a particular ire for super PACs, which can accept unlimited sums from individuals and corporations. Sanders hammered his opponents for taking help from super PACs during the 2016 and 2020 primaries. And by all accounts, he was rather furious when he found out some of his top advisers had decided to move ahead with one.

“The senator was informed about the creation of the super PAC before the paperwork was filed, and he was not happy about it,” Sanders political spokesman Mike Casca told VICE News.

Numerous other Sanders staff used more colorful language to describe Sanders’ reaction to the group.


Weaver declined to discuss the details of his conversations with Sanders, but was quick to admit his old boss wasn’t thrilled that he was creating a super PAC.


Weaver dismissed grumblings from critics that he might be looking to cash in with the group, saying no one had taken salaries yet from the organization, and “we’ll probably make at or less than what we made before.”

That word, “Yet,” covers a whole lot of future mischief.


This isn’t the first time a Weaver group has gotten off to a rocky start, partly because he sought unlimited funds. When Weaver was named the head of the pro-Sanders Our Revolution after Sanders’ 2016 campaign, more than half the staff resigned in protest — partly over personal differences but also because he’d decided to push for a large independent expenditure effort to power the organization rather than focus on small-dollar donations. Both Our Revolution and this new group can take unlimited contributions, though the new super PAC America’s Promise will eventually be required to disclose its donors, unlike Our Revolution.

Yeah, this is going to be a remarkable success  ……… NOT.

Fuck No!

It appears that Bernie Sanders is being pressured to turn over his donor list to Joe Biden and the Democratic Party establishment (There is no Democratic Party establishment).

Fuck that.

The people who donated to you do not want to be a an asset to be managed by some hack political consultant whose only qualification is their close relationships with members of the Democratic Party establishment (There is no Democratic Party establishment).

Please, just don’t.

Find out What What He’s Been Smoking, and Have a Few Ounces Sent to My Chamber

Over at The Intercept, Jeremy Scahill and Ryan Grim are suggesting that that there should be a Joe Biden/Bernie Sanders Presidential ticket.

Seriously, which ever person is at the top of the ticket, it is pretty likely that they will be succeeded by their VP, and their policies are diametrically opposed.

Additionally, the DemocraticParty establishment (there is no Democratic Party establishment) would would vociferously oppose Sanders as a running mate, (It would interfere with their keeping their phony baloney jobs)  and Sanders supporters would oppose the selection of Biden with equal vigor given that they consider Biden to have been on the wrong side of every major issue throughout his career.

This isn’t journalism, it’s bad fan fiction.

Traditional Values, Huh?

At a Sanders Rally in Phoenix, a protester unveiled a Nazi flag and shouted, “Heil Hitler.”

Clearly, the problem is “Bernie Bros” saying nasty things on Twitter.

More seriously, why the hell aren’t Sanders and Biden getting Secret Service protection?

Moments after Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) took the stage at his campaign rally in Phoenix on Thursday night, the crowd was on its feet cheering madly for the Democratic presidential candidate.

But those cheers were swiftly replaced by deafening boos when Sanders’s supporters noticed that one man standing behind the senator in an upper section of the Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum wasn’t waving a “Bernie” sign like many of those around him.

Instead, the man was holding a red flag above his head — and it was emblazoned with a swastika.

“It was absolutely wild,” Brianna Westbrook, a national surrogate for the Sanders campaign, told The Washington Post. “I never thought I would have seen a swastika at a political event. It’s gross.”

While people near the protester quickly ripped the offending item out of his hands and he was removed from the arena, the mere appearance of a Nazi flag at an event dedicated to a democratic socialist who could become the country’s first Jewish president sparked outcry. The moment, captured in videos and photos that circulated on social media Thursday night, was denounced as an act of anti-Semitism and prompted increased concerns about Sanders’s safety on the campaign trail.


“I was expecting Trump supporters to be protesting. I didn’t expect a swastika flag to be unfurled,” Orlando Garrido, a rally attendee, told The Post. “I never thought I would actually see something like that.”

On Twitter, the display was widely condemned as observers pointed out that Sanders’s Polish relatives were murdered in the Holocaust.


The Anti-Defamation League identified the protester Friday as Robert Sterkeson, a resident of Arizona. According to the ADL, Sterkeson is “a self-described ‘stunt activist’ who has harassed a range of Jewish and Muslim organizations and events.”

Paging Upton Sinclair

Upton Sinclair once observed that, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

Reports that the Democratic establishment is willing to burn the party to the ground so that they can preside over the ruins is proof of this.

The army of overpaid incompetent consultants, and their friends on the revolving door track at the DNC, realize the iff Bernie Sanders wins, then their personal gravy train comes to an end.

Of course they are willing to produce long lasting damage to the party in order to preserve their position within the party.

It’s the Iron Law of Institutions, “The people who control institutions care first and foremost about their power within the institution rather than the power of the institution itself. Thus, they would rather the institution “fail” while they remain in power within the institution than for the institution to “succeed” if that requires them to lose power within the institution.”

Dozens of interviews with Democratic establishment leaders this week show that they are not just worried about Mr. Sanders’s candidacy, but are also willing to risk intraparty damage to stop his nomination at the national convention in July if they get the chance. Since Mr. Sanders’s victory in Nevada’s caucuses on Saturday, The Times has interviewed 93 party officials — all of them superdelegates, who could have a say on the nominee at the convention — and found overwhelming opposition to handing the Vermont senator the nomination if he arrived with the most delegates but fell short of a majority.

Such a situation may result in a brokered convention, a messy political battle the likes of which Democrats have not seen since 1952, when the nominee was Adlai Stevenson.

“We’re way, way, way past the day where party leaders can determine an outcome here, but I think there’s a vibrant conversation about whether there is anything that can be done,” said Jim Himes, a Connecticut congressman and superdelegate, who believe the nominee should have a majority of delegates.

In the words of Mel Brooks, “We gotta protect our phony baloney jobs.”


Bernie Crushes it in Nevada

Sanders has been declared the decisive winner of the Nevada caucus, getting nearly half of the caucus votes, and scoring more than double of his nearest competitor, Joe Biden.

Needless to say, someone at MSNBC will call this a potential disaster.

(Performs quick Google)

Yep, Tweety delivers.

Chris Matthews compares the Sanders victory to the Nazi invasion of France.

What the f%$# is wrong with these people?

Pull Their Not-For-Profit Status

The greatest danger to the state of Israel in the United States, AIPAC, has been revealed to be offering perks to people who make donations to an anti-Bernie Sanders PAC, which violates a sh%$-load of campaign finance and non-profit regulations.

The degree to which taxpayers are effectively funding fraudulent non-profit activities buggers the mind:

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee is helping to fund a Super PAC launching attack ads against Sen. Bernie Sanders in Nevada on Saturday, according to two sources with knowledge of the arrangement. The ads are being run by a group called Democratic Majority for Israel, founded by longtime AIPAC strategist Mark Mellman.

The Nevada attack ads, which will air in media markets in Reno and Las Vegas, follow a similar spending blitz by DMFI ahead of the Iowa caucuses. Like the ads that aired in Iowa, the Nevada ads will attack Sanders on the idea that he’s not electable, Mediaite reported.

DMFI spent $800,000 on the Iowa ads, while the spending on the Nevada ads remains private. AIPAC is helping bankroll the anti-Sanders project by allowing donations to DMFI to count as contributions to AIPAC, the sources said. As is typical with most big-money giving programs, the more a donor gives to AIPAC, the higher tier they can claim — $100,000 level, $1 million level, and so on — and the more benefits accrue to them. A $100,000 donor gets more access to members of Congress at private functions, for instance, than someone who merely pays AIPAC’s conference fee. A $1 million donor gets still more, which means that it is important to donors to have their contributions tallied. There is also status within social networks attached to one’s tier of giving. The arrangement allows donors to give directly to DMFI, which is required to file disclosures naming its donors, without AIPAC’s fingerprints.

Rachel Rosen, a spokesperson for DMFI, said she was unaware of any AIPAC encouragement to donate to the organization. “As far as we know, what you are suggesting is completely untrue,” she said. “But because we are a separate organization, we can’t know exactly what other organizations are doing. Therefore, we are the wrong address for the the specific questions you ask — they need to [be] directed to AIPAC.”

AIPAC denied the arrangement. “AIPAC is not and has not been involved in the ad campaigns of any political action committee,” spokesperson Marshall Wittmann wrote in an email. “The accusation that AIPAC is providing benefits to members for donating to fund these political ads or this political action committee is completely false and has no basis in fact.”

If you believe AIPAC’s denials, I have some prime swamp land in Tel Hazor to sell you.


Be still my beating heart:

Bernie Sanders, if he were elected president, would revive the criminal provisions of the Sherman Antitrust Act to prosecute CEOs who have illegally monopolized a market, he told The Intercept in an interview.

The Sherman Act is the Department of Justice’s main tool for enforcing antitrust laws, which are meant to prevent monopolies from dominating an industry, which harms workers, consumers, and other businesses. It has both civil and criminal provisions, though in recent years, prosecutors have relied only on its civil provisions, with the intent of breaking up monopolies and opening markets.

Asked if the criminal provisions, which could see a CEO locked up for 10 years if intent to engage in unfair restrictions on trade can be proven, Sanders said, “Damn right they should be.”


Major Sherman Act civil cases reshaped the American economy in the 20th century — particularly the breakup of AT&T in 1984, which paved the way for the rise of Silicon Valley. Civil prosecutions scare business leaders as a business matter, while criminal prosecutions, which have been sparse, frighten them personally.

Your mouth to God’s ear.

“Roosevelt’s antitrust chief Thurman Arnold used to criminally indict business executives and fingerprint them like ordinary executives,” said Matt Stoller, whose new book “Goliath: Hundred Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy” chronicles these battles. (Arnold was an assistant attorney general who led the Justice Department’s antitrust division.) “As soon as he did this, amazingly, monopolistic practices in those industries would cease.”

Which is why the spectacle of business leaders being frog-marched out of their offices in handcuffs should become a routine sight.

Without personal consequences for CEOs and their ilk, they take their slap on the wrist, take their 8 figure bonuses, and do it all over again.

F%$#ed Up Headline of the Day

At The Hill, they have a rather interesting headline, “Poll: Trump beats Warren, Biden in Iowa match-ups.”

It’s interesting for a number of reasons:

  • First, it’s a 51%-49% poll for both Biden and Warren trailing trump, with a 3.2% margin of error, so it’s a non story.
  • Second, and more importantly, is what we see in the 3rd paragraph:

    The reverse was the case for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Fifty-one percent of voters said they would pick him over Trump, who garnered 49 percent support.

This is a hacktacularly bad piece of reporting, and once again, as always, it cuts against Bernie Sanders.

Crap, Crap, Crap, Crap, Crap

Bernie Sanders was just admitted to hospital after experiencing chest pains, and he got a stent:

Democratic presidential contender Bernie Sanders was treated for an artery blockage this week, sidelining him for at least a few days from a race in which the candidates’ age and physical health have been significant factors.

The senator from Vermont was hospitalized after experiencing chest pains at a Tuesday campaign event, according to Jeff Weaver, a senior Sanders adviser. Doctors found a blockage in one artery and inserted two stents, Weaver said in a Wednesday statement. Sanders was “in good spirits” but canceled campaign events “until further notice” so he can rest in the coming days, Weaver said.

Sanders thanked well-wishers Wednesday and used the moment to draw attention to his signature universal-health-care proposal. “None of us know when a medical emergency might affect us. And no one should fear going bankrupt if it occurs. Medicare-for-all!” he tweeted.

My dad, a life long runner, lived about 15 years after getting his stent (lousy genetics), so I’m inclined to believe that Sanders should be fine in a few days, but this is not good for his campaign.

Burying the Lede

I love reading Taibbi, but in his article on the craziness in the run-up to the Iowa caucuses, he buries the lede.

More than ⅔ down in the article is the money quote, “Sanders is the revolutionary. His election would mean a complete overhaul of the Democratic Party, forcing everyone who ever worked for a Clinton to look toward the private sector.

This primary season is about how the Democratic Party consultant class, the leeches, is fighting for its power at the expense of both the party and the country.

This is a Thing of Beauty

I guarantee you that that Mr. Costa thought that he had a great “gotcha” question here, and Sanders owns his lame ass attempt to put half quotes in his mouth.

if you come at the king pic.twitter.com/uDaO0o02Lz

— Current Affairs (@curaffairs) July 16, 2019

An interviewer comes after Sanders with half a quote, and Sanders remembers the whole quote:

MR. COSTA: Let’s stick with that race point you just brought up. In 1974, you said that bussing policies were well meaning in theory but sometimes result in “racial hostility.”

SEN. SANDERS: What else did I say in that?

MR. COSTA: Tell me.

SEN. SANDERS: No, you got it there. Read it. Read the whole quote.

MR. COSTA: I don’t have the whole quote.


SEN. SANDERS: The whole quote is the federal government doesn’t give a sh%$ about African Americans.

MR. COSTA: Well, that is true. That’s why I didn’t include it.

SEN. SANDERS: All right. Okay.

The point that Sanders was making, and the point that he remembered from 45 years ago, was that the Federal government was refusing to enforce fair housing laws.

Interesting Data Point

Elizabeth Warren seems to have a detailed plan for everything, with one exception she has no plan on healthcare, not even an explicit endorsement of a vague form of “Medicare for All”.

This is clearly an intentional omission, since her whole brand is about having a plan for EVERYTHING.

Considering that she has staked out a position just to the right of Bernie Sanders, I consider this to be an important tell: She will not fight for a truly universal healthcare system:

In a recent MSNBC town hall, Elizabeth Warren put her policy platform on full display. Through emotional, personal anecdotes and with a depth of understanding, Warren gave the impression of a candidate well-aware of the problems faced by working Americans and armed with the policies needed to solve them. She detailed her plans to achieve universal childcare, cancel the bulk of existing student debt, and create over a million green jobs by progressively taxing the richest Americans. She boldly criticized Joe Biden’s conservative record and decried the greed of large corporations.

The performance supported Warren’s reputation as a candidate with a “plan for everything” — a reputation emphasized repeatedly by MSNBC moderator Chris Hayes throughout the event. Taken as a whole, however, the town hall revealed an alarming gap in Warren’s policy repertoire, one that has gone mostly ignored to this point in the campaign: she has no plan for fixing the broken US health care system.

Warren had several opportunities in the town hall to address the health care crisis. Instead, she avoided the topic almost entirely. Even when discussing issues directly related to health care like repealing the Hyde Amendment and improving access to hearing aides, she neglected to propose a comprehensive policy solution.

Unfortunately, this was not a simple case of forgetfulness. In fact, it continues a disturbing trend with the Warren campaign. Check her website: in a long and thorough issues page full of bold plans to alleviate Americans’ suffering, Warren makes no mention of health care. View her campaign materials: Warren has yard signs dedicated to several of her major policy proposals, but not a single one about health care. Follow her campaign appearances: you’ll hear the usual platitudes (“health care is a human right;” “everyone deserves access to care”), but you won’t hear her endorse a specific policy.


Take for instance Warren’s March town hall on CNN. When asked directly whether she supports Medicare for All, Warren suggested that Medicare for All is merely a slogan for expanded public coverage, rather than a specific piece of single-payer legislation.

“When we talk about Medicare for All, there are a lot of different pathways,” she said, before listing a slew of incremental proposals without explicitly endorsing any of them, from lowering the age for Medicare eligibility to allowing employers to buy in to Medicare. “For me, what’s key is we get everyone to the table on this.”

Taking this answer at face value, it seems Warren sees herself pursuing an incremental approach that expands public coverage while preserving the private insurance industry should she be elected president. This would likely surprise many of her supporters, who might view her cosponsorship of Sanders’s Medicare for All bill as an endorsement of single-payer health care.

It’s fair to ask why Warren, who supports bold, progressive policies on a number of major issues, is avoiding the most important issue to voters. It could be a reluctance to attach herself to a rival candidate’s signature policy, or it could be a way to avoid conflict with the powerful health care corporations in her home state of Massachusetts.

Either way, it meshes well with a years-long effort by Democrats to blur the meaning of Medicare for All by gesturing goodwill toward single-payer advocates while attempting to redefine the phrase and apply it to public option proposals that preserve the private insurance industry. By following this playbook, Warren is actively supporting the corporate effort to kill the growing Medicare for All movement.

I wouldn’t go quite that far, but her reticence is unsettling.