Sanders and Trump: “two peas in a pod”

Or so said Dana Milbank:

Free trade agreements “have been disastrous” for the United States, the candidate said, and have sent jobs to Mexico and China. “I will stop it by renegotiating all of the trade agreements that we have.”

It sounded like just another threat from Donald Trump to “rip up those trade deals” and “make really good ones” instead. Such a policy could set off a global trade war and impoverish millions.

But the candidate who said this was Bernie Sanders, April 1 in New York. And that’s no coincidence: He and Trump are peas in a pod.

Now before you think that Mr. Milbank is off his rocker, he goes on to say:

In their political philosophy and temperament, they couldn’t be more opposite. Trump is a billionaire with strongman tendencies who preys on the weak and has run the coarsest political campaign in modern memory. Sanders is a socialist and champion of the little guy who talks with compassion about the poor and refuses to get into the gutter.

But the two are the yin and yang of outlandish policy proposals. Both men — and to a great extent Ted Cruz, too — have grounded their platforms in fantasy.

Yep. Trump: obvious (border wall? Deport 11 million people?) Sanders: well, see what Paul Krugman has to say.

So, who in the heck backs Sanders anyway? Well, for starters, my college daughter (and yes, I bought her an official Sanders campaign t-shirt; I like it that she is involved in politics), and a couple of good friends of mine, (example, example) both who are above average in intelligence. I also enjoyed a Sanders debate watch party with friends (and to be fair, 3 of our group of 5 were Clinton supporters) And yes, one basket case too (bright, reasonably accomplished woman but..well, never mind)

But many of those on Facebook that I “know”…oh my. It seems that “discussions” consist of my attempting to put forth some facts or calculations, and my receiving slogans, bumper stickers and little else.

What I think is going on: most of the Clinton supporters that I know (not all) come from my “in real life” friends that I discuss politics with, and these tend to be highly educated (advanced degrees, etc.) The class of people on the internet that I “know” are more mixed.

Most of the “reasonable” Sanders supporters that I talk to think that he is a longshot but is having a positive effect on keeping the economic issues on the front burner. Sanders is also getting people TO the political process. And unfortunately, Hillary Clinton is a less-than-inspiring campaign speaker; her words are measured and her message nuanced. She seems to run everything by a political consultant before she says it.

“Vote for me because I know how hard it will be to make even a little bit of progress on these issues that are important to you, but small progress is better than zero progress” doesn’t inspire anyone, though it is realistic.

And yes, if Bernie Sanders wins the Democratic nomination, I’ll vote for him without hesitation. I’ll even give his campaign money.

I agree with Bill Maher: for someone who supports either Sanders or Clinton right now to vote Republican in the general election is just nuts.


April 12, 2016 - Posted by | political/social, politics, politics/social | , ,

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