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It’s Time to Put Out the Bern

Why presidential candidate Bernie Sander's ideas won't work

<> on July 24, 2014 in Washington, DC.

Photo by Getty Images

<> on July 24, 2014 in Washington, DC.

Peter Quinn, Staff Reporter

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While many are focusing on what presidential candidate Donald Trump is doing incorrectly, let’s shift the focus to what other candidates are doing wrong as well, specifically Senator Bernie Sanders. Bernie Sanders is a popular candidate for the 2016, but is it for the right reasons?

There is no in-between for supporting Bernie; it’s either you love him or you hate him. Before I get into why his plans could be theoretically very detrimental to the economy, I want to establish that as an individual, he is a great man with great intentions. His ultimate plan is to help people of the United States, although he seems to be going about it in all the wrong ways.
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Bernie Sanders does possess some strong points, mainly dealing with issues in law enforcement and with prisons. His point that prisons shouldn’t be “for profit” is valid, because it potentially causes them to arrest people for money. He also has strong points on health care, that it’s a human right, and therefore all citizens deserve it.

IMG_0147Bernie describes himself as a democratic socialist, who ultimately believes that the wealth is disproportionately distributed in our society. He is very passionate about raising the $7.25 minimum wage to somewhere around $15 an hour.

Raising minimum wage a few dollars wouldn’t be too detrimental, but more than doubling it would be critical to the economy. A lot of positions that minimum wage are mostly worked by teenagers or young adults.

Even people who do work full time at establishments like fast food restaurants, are usually managers or in positions that do pay more than $15 an hour.

Now, my favorite is his idea of free college. The idea is a great one, and if it were plausible, it would be wonderful. He seems to lack any backbone to this idea though. He’s been consistently asked who would fund this, and he seems to never answer. If he expects the government to pay for this “free” college, well, all of you taxpayers better prepare for a large tax raise.

He also expects to do this while he is trying to lower overall taxes. Looks to me that his ideas contradict each other. If the government won’t pay for it, then does he expect the billionaires to? I’m sorry, but they aren’t obligated to support free college. 20 years ago, state colleges used to be the idea of public or affordable college, where they were drastically less costly as they are now. If we went back to that, I feel that would be reasonable. Sadly, over those 20 years, that idea of an affordable state college has almost faded completely.

I wouldn’t say that either Bernie or Trump are viable candidates, but for separates reasons. As a person, Bernie Sanders has a lot of great intentions, it’s just that his ideas aren’t entirely plausible with our current economic situation. With him in office, the economy would suffer even more than it currently is. If it is possible to pull these ideas off, we would be in a better state, but since he has yet to explain actually how, I am skeptical.

An editorial cartoon counter-point

Maria Koliopoulos
An editorial cartoon counter-point

2 Comments

2 Responses to “It’s Time to Put Out the Bern”

  1. Garrett on February 25th, 2016 9:40 am

    Peter, oh Peter. You really need to use hard evidence to back up your opinions, otherwise you have no ground to stand on. Bernie’s economic plans such as single-payer healthcare and mass investment in infrastructure are two of the best proposals by any candidate yet. Universal healthcare will lower the cost of going to the hospital as hospitals will no longer worry about patients who don’t have coverage not paying. Infrastructure will add hundreds of thousands of jobs back into the economy. These ideas are viable too with a Democratic congress. He will also secure our social security, and he can hike taxes on the too-rich which will help us climb out of the serious problem which is income inequality. Sure, free college isn’t likely, but affordable college definitely is, and Bernie can make that happen.

  2. renée mergens on February 25th, 2016 10:14 am

    here’s how Bernie plans to pay for these plans, and do so in a way that is much more fair than the current system that got America $14 trillion into debt in the first place.

    Rebuild America Act: Sen. Sanders has proposed a $1 trillion plan to rebuild our crumbling infrastructureand put 13 million Americans to work. Paid for by making corporations pay taxes on all of the “profits” they have shifted to the Cayman Islands and other offshore tax havens, which the Congressional Research Services estimates may currently create losses that approach $100 billion annually, and other loopholes.
    College for All: Sen. Sanders has proposed making public colleges and universities tuition-free and substantially reducing student debt, in a plan that would cost about $75 billion a year. Paid for by imposing a tax on Wall Street speculators that would generate about $300 billion in revenue.
    Expand and Extend Social Security: Sen. Sanders has proposed expanding Social Security and extending the solvency of this program until 2065. Paid for by lifting the cap on taxable income above $250,000 so that the wealthy pay the same percentage of their income into Social Security as working people
    Youth Jobs Program: Sen. Sanders has proposed a $5.5 billion youth jobs program to create 1 million jobs for disadvantaged young Americans. Paid for by ending the carried interest loophole that allows billionaire hedge fund managers to pay a lower tax rate than nurses and truck drivers.
    Paid Family and Medical Leave: Sen. Sanders has proposed at least 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave to all workers. Paid for by a payroll tax that would total $1.61 a week for the typical American worker. According to Sen. Gillibrand’s office, this would be “a self-sufficient program that would not add to the federal budget.”
    Protect Pensions: Sen. Sanders has introduced a plan to prevent cuts to the pensions of over 1.5 million Americans. Paid for by closing two tax loopholes that allow the wealthy to avoid taxes on money they inherit and expensive artwork they collect.
    Renewable Energy and Clean Jobs Transition: Sen. Sanders has a plan to invest in clean, sustainable energy sources powered by the sun, wind and Earth’s heat. He also has a plan to provide comprehensive benefits to workers as they transition to making the solar panels, wind turbines, and batteries of tomorrow. Paid for by stopping taxpayer-funded giveaways to oil, gas and coal companies
    Sen. Sanders has introduced a plan to expand health care coverage to every American. Paid for by a 6.2 percent income-based health care premium paid by employers, a 2.2 percent income-based premium paid by households, progressive income tax rates, taxing capital gains and dividends the same as income from work, limiting tax deductions for the rich, adjusting the estate tax, and savings from health tax expenditures

    Bernie also has plans for issues many other candidates, republican and democrat, fail to even recognize such as:
    -income and wealth equality
    -getting big money out of politics and restoring true democracy
    -creating decent paying jobs
    -a living wage (btw, people who are working full time at fast food establishments are not making more than $15/hr. there are not that many management positions. idk where you got that. it’s wrong.)
    -combating climate change
    -fair and humane immigration policy
    -racial justice
    -fighting for women’s rights
    -fighting for LGBT equality
    -caring for our veterans
    -Medicare for all
    -disability rights
    -strengthen and expand social security
    -fighting to lower prescription drug prices
    -improving rural economy
    -reforming Wall Street
    -REAL family values
    -war and peace

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