Sanders’ victory: How Bernie ended the Cold War in 2016 … Sanders’ dark horse candidacy stripped socialism of its fringe labels and, culturally speaking, ended the Cold War – Salon
Now that Bernie Sanders is becoming a Hillary backer, the mainstream media is celebrating him.
This article from Salon actually gives Sanders credit for ending a certain kind of Cold War.
I can remember the exact moment when it occurred to me that the Cold War was finally over. It was about three months ago, at an event for prospective university students and their parents; at the end, a smart, energetic college senior took questions from the audience.
When asked to describe the political climate on campus, she said it was broad and inclusive, featuring conservatives, Trump supporters, liberals, progressives, and, as she put it, “democratic socialists like me.”
She wasn’t trying to be provocative. No one in the audience batted an eye. She referred to socialism in a purely neutral, descriptive way, and everyone moved on. The lingering effects of Cold War ideology had finally faded away.
The article goes on to explain in more detail exactly what Cold War Sanders ended.
The author, John Mackey – associate chair of the Social Sciences Division in the College of General Studies at Boston University – believes the Cold War made a discussion of democratic socialism impossible.
It was falsely equated with communism, he writes, and thus, as well, with the Gulag.
But now self-identified socialist Sanders has resuscitated the socialist dialogue by winning 23 major-party primaries or caucuses.
Not only did he attract the votes of millions of young people in the US, he also had a significant impact on the Democratic platform.
The platform hammered out over the weekend in Orlando, Florida, is, as he has said, the most progressive of any major party ever, and by a lot. His relentless focus on the issues has meant that the Democratic Party, anyway, has begun to transform itself.
Over at Politico, Michael Kruse celebrates Sanders.
Sanders’ entire campaign, in fact, has been an extended lecture on how a campaign should in fact be about transformation: how you need to get money and corporate power out of politics to make it happen, how you need to make sure everyone can go to college and no one spends their life working for so little money they can’t engage as a citizen.
We who stood behind Bernie know how to be steadfast and unruffled, even when the powers that be are begging us to stop. One of the reasons we know is because Sanders has shown us.
Neither article provides us any downside to Sanders’ vision. In fact, Mackey eagerly awaits a transformation of US society that will bring the country closer Scandavian countries like Denmark – often noted as one of the happiest countries in the world.
The Internet tells us another story, though. Denmark doesn’t seem so happy when you read about it.
For one thing a sizable minority of Danes take anti-depression drugs like Prozac.
And the drinking culture is so notable that almost any portrait of the country mentions that from Friday until Monday alcohol is consumed in excess – and almost anyone you meet seems inebriated.
This doesn’t sound very happy.
Add to that many expat narratives explaining how dull the country is, and how costly it is to live there, and you end up with a rather negative perception of “democratic socialism.”
Even the “free” services are not especially functional. Health care operates with tremendous wait-times. The streets are dirty.
Taxes are well above 50% in Denmark and sales taxes are at least 25%. Reportedly car taxes are over 200%. A $50,000 car in the US could cost over $150.000 in the Denmark.
Additionally, the Scandinavian countries and Denmark in particular are moving toward “cashless” societies.
The control governments wish to command over citizens in these countries will be immeasurably increased by such a society.
Whatever is bad about these countries is bound to get worse
The Danes are often accused of being unfriendly, but these are basically tribal societies that go back thousands of years. The societies don’t “work” because of the political system but rather in spite of it.
The kind of socialism that Sanders offers is basically bankrupting Europe. Once you allow politicians to spend money countries doesn’t have, the spending goes up – and never stops.
When you give governments enormous monetary power, it will eventually be abused.
Sanders campaigned on the idea that a handful of politicians should have extraordinary power over everyone else.
Conclusion: For some reason he’s been able to convince himself and others that when people have extraordinary, basically unsupervised, power, they won’t abuse it. History show us otherwise.