Bernie Sanders is a socialist. Yup, I said it. Apparently Karl Marx thought that Socialism leads to Communism (as is the USSR – Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) or Naziism, which was headed the the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. But the opposite seems to be true. Both Naziism and the Soviet Union have died, although certainly Vladimir Putin is trying to get Russia back to the the “good ole’ days” of the Soviet Empire.
But the fact of the matter is there is a big difference between tyrannical socialism and democratic socialism. Sanders is more of the latter, and there are many countries in Europe that seem to be pretty good examples of not falling for Soviet or Nazi tyrannical socialism. For example, the top 3 happiest countries, according to the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) are social democracies:
Denmark, Finland and the Netherlands rated at the top of the list, ranking first, second and third, respectively.
The US? As expected, the United States failed to make the top 10 but ranked among the highest for obesity and child poverty. Americans spend less than half the amount of time eating as the French, but have three times the obesity rate. “This tells us something about slow food, I think,” Simon Chappele, editor of the report said in an interview with NPR.
The report also showed the United States has the lowest mean age for women when they first gave birth, at 25.1 years old.
Also, the United States still ranks among the highest for child poverty rates, with one in five children living in poverty. This was only exceeded in Poland, Mexico and Turkey.
Truly this tyrannical socialism is for the dustbin of history, but maybe we have something to learn from Denmark, Finland and the Netherlands if they are so doggone happy. Why are they happier? And why does the US rank next to Poland, Mexico, and Turkey with regards to childhood poverty? Is that something we should be proud of, or ashamed of?
Sanders went to Liberty University a few weeks ago because ” I believe from the bottom of my heart that it is vitally important for those of us who hold different views to be able to engage in a civil discourse.” (A full transcript of his speech is found at the Washington Post.)
Of course there are issues that Sanders and conservatives disagree with, and he pointed those out immediately. “I understand that the issues of abortion and gay marriage are issues that you feel very strongly about. We disagree on those issues. ” But he felt there are areas in which he felt that he aligns well with conservatives.
[L]et me respectfully suggest that there are other issues out there that are of enormous consequence to our country and in fact to the entire world, that maybe, just maybe, we do not disagree on and maybe, just maybe, we can try to work together to resolve them.
What are these issues?
it would be hard for anyone in this room today to make the case that the United States of America, our great country, a country which all of us love, it would be hard to make the case that we are a just society, or anything resembling a just society today.
Do you think we live in a just society here in the United States? Sanders makes his point.
In the United States of America today, there is massive injustice in terms of income and wealth inequality. Injustice is rampant. We live, and I hope all of you know this, in the wealthiest country in the history of the world.
But most Americans don’t know that. Because almost all of that wealth and income is going to the top 1 percent.
You know, that is the truth. We are living in a time — and I warn all of you if you would, put this in the context of the Bible, not me, in the context of the Bible — we are living in a time where a handful of people have wealth beyond comprehension. And I’m talking about tens of billions of dollars, enough to support their families for thousands of years. With huge yachts, and jet planes and tens of billions. More money than they would ever know what to do with.
But at that very same moment, there are millions of people in our country, let alone the rest of the world, who are struggling to feed their families. They are struggling to put a roof over their heads, and some of them are sleeping out on the streets. They are struggling to find money in order to go to a doctor when they are sick.
Now, when we talk about morality, and when we talk about justice, we have to, in my view, understand that there is no justice when so few have so much and so many have so little.
There is no justice, and I want you to hear this clearly, when the top one-tenth of 1 percent — not 1 percent, the top one-tenth of 1 percent — today in America owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent. And in your hearts, you will have to determine the morality of that, and the justice of that.
In my view, there is no justice, when here, in Virginia and Vermont and all over this country, millions of people are working long hours for abysmally low wages of $7.25 an hour, of $8 an hour, of $9 an hour, working hard, but unable to bring in enough money to adequately feed their kids.
And yet, at that same time, 58 percent of all new income generated is going to the top 1 percent. You have got to think about the morality of that, the justice of that, and whether or not that is what we want to see in our country.
In my view, there is no justice when, in recent years, we have seen a proliferation of millionaires and billionaires, while at the same time the United States of America has the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major country on Earth. How can we? I want you to go into your hearts, how can we talk about morality, about justice, when we turn our backs on the children of our country?
Does Sanders make a point here? Is it just to have ” the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major country on Earth” while at the same time “a handful of people have wealth beyond comprehension…. 58 percent of all new income generated is going to the top 1 percent.” Is this a just society that does this? Is this a consecration society? Is this in keeping with what Jesus
clearly stated in Matthew 7:12, and it states, “So in everything, do to others what you would have them to do to you, for this sums up the war and the prophets.” That is the golden rule. Do unto others, what you would have them do to you. That is the golden rule, and it is not very complicated.
Is our society living the golden rule? And if it is not, even if you do not agree with Bernie Sanders approach to government, what should be done to make our society better live the golden rule? Is there any validity to what Sanders is saying with regards to the inequalities manifest in our economy? Would Joseph Smith or Brigham Young support the inequalities in our current society? Is it time for Christians to get behind this message? Do you think these income disparities are in heaven? Are they good for us in this life?
Money and wealth should serve the people. The people should not have to serve money and wealth.
Agree or Disagree?