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Monday, January 25, 2016

In Praise Of Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders is a self-proclaimed socialist in a country where Ronald Reagan became an icon warning against creeping socialism. He doesn't want to tax it if it moves, he wants to nationalize it.

He rails against big money in speech after speech. He says the common people have no chance against giant profit machines and their relentless pursuit of the bottom line.

He's right, you know. Actually, I'm gratified that someone on the Left still gets outraged about something. Something real, that is.

He's honest in a business where it doesn't pay to be honest. You've got to admire that, and I do.

I don't believe in socialism, abortion, and "gay rights." Those are the 3 reasons not to consider voting for Bernie Sanders. But I'll tell you this: the worst part of the Republican postwar "fusionism," as they call it, is the conflation of justice and mercy in economics, and the contention that the former either does not exist, or is no legitimate concern of government at any level. There could be no peace, no d├ętente, between two factions with diametrically opposed views on the good of government as such. But such was the force of personality of Ronald Reagan: he delayed a much-needed philosophy debate on the Right for a quarter-century.

If it's "liberal" to say that government is not a necessary evil, but a positive good, so be it. Our Founders limited it precisely to facilitate the general welfare, not to deny that it exists.

Senator Sanders has, at the least, reminded us that systemic economic injustice is a scandal, not an unfortunate outcome in an otherwise functioning system. For that, I am thankful.

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