Election 2016

Is Bernie Sanders the 2016 Ron Paul? He Can't Win Either, Media Points Out

Compare and contrast.

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U.S. Congress

A series of articles earlier this month pointed out some of the similarities between Bernie Sanders' current presidential campaign and the 2008/2012 Ron Paul campaigns. Both candidates are former members of third parties, septuagenarians running outsider campaigns that appeal to a younger set of voters, that oppose foreign interventions, the surveillance and police states, and the drug war. For all the talking up of their similarities on the issue of bank bailouts and cronyism, Sanders didn't support Ron Paul's legislation to audit the fed. There are other big differences too.

At The Week Peter Weber writes: "Both men have a libertarian bent, though Sanders would be better described as a civil libertarian and Paul a fiscal one." Paul is, actually, a civil and fiscal one. The Washington Post puts it more accurately: "Sanders doesn't necessarily have a problem with the government getting involved in things — hence 'socialist' — and Paul generally does — hence 'libertarian.'" And neither Weber nor The Post, nor numerous other outlets see Bernie Sanders with any chance of winning. His supporters, like Ron Paul's facing the same narrative in 2008 and 2012, don't agree.

There is another difference between Sanders and Ron Paul. Ron Paul's ideas about limited government and civil liberties were outside establishment Republican thought in 2008. His two campaigns opened the door for candidates like Justin Amash in Michigan and his son Rand Paul in Kentucky and several others to run and win on "Ron Paul issues." Most media outlets won't say Rand Paul can't win, and a lot of that has to do with what the Ron Paul campaigns did. Bernie Sanders, on the other hand, I think, expresses ideas that aren't necessarily outside establishment Democrat thought.  Here's David Harsanyi on a curious description of Hillary Clinton trying to sound like Bernie Sanders by saying the 1 percent needed "toppling" after she saw a chart on income inequality, placed in The New York Times by a Clinton source:

It's established media practice to talk about the GOP as the party that's lurched to the far right, an ideologically intractable group on a disturbing trajectory that leads to 2008-era tax rates and other forms of fanaticism. But I would love for someone to point out the last time a Democratic Party candidate suggested that government should topple an entire class of Americans for the good of everyone else. Has anyone, including Barack Obama, ever gone that far? Remember that this isn't just some slip of the tongue; this is Hillary's camp laying out a fantastical story to an accommodating media outlet—going out of its way to make sure the word "topple" would be specifically mentioned in quotation marks. Also, I'd love to know which economists nodded their heads in agreement as Hillary embraced this harebrained Robert Reich zero-sum economic "toppling" theory.

For many Democrats the anti-Hillary candidate is Elizabeth Warren. The differences between her and Sanders appear mostly rhetorical. Warren didn't support Rand Paul's audit the fed efforts either. The leaders of the only organized progressive effort in support of Bernie Sanders would prefer Warren to run. Few outlets, I think, would write that she couldn't win. Not so for Rand, even as his father indisputably helped force some of the ideas his son holds on the surveillance state, criminal justice reform, and other civil liberties issues into consideration by the Republican mainstream.

NEXT: Glenn Beck Calls for the Repeal of Federal Drug Prohibition

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  1. Kooky Commie is not like a Kooky Libertarian.

    No shit.

    I read over the morning link comments. I see Bo can still be counted on to shit up a thread with accusations of racism and that shreek misses me.

    Hey Bo, is there anything at all that can’t be considered racist? When done by a white person, that is.

    1. So you want her to shit all over a new thread and smother legitimate, worthy conversations?

      What the fuck is wrong with you people?

      1. I blame the popularity of the execrable Fifty Shades of Grey popularizing ersatz BDSM, myself.

        1. Ersatz BDSM… Roger that.

    2. Hey Bo

      Why are you encouraging him?

  2. Kooky Commie is not like Kooky Libertarian.

    No shit.

    Fuckin’ squirrels ate my last two comments. Fuckers. Where is my rifle?

    1. Great. Now I see they only ate one comment, which they will probably regurgitate later on another thread.

          1. I imagine this is what reason’s web admins do all day.

  3. Sanders didn’t support Ron Paul’s legislation to audit the fed

    And why would he? The Fed more than any other institution is what allows the socialist spending spree to continue by stealing wealth from the lower and middle classes. You didn’t think he actually gave a shit about those people did you?

    1. Sanders probably wants a new, additional Fed, run by and tasked with creating money to give to women and minorities and gays and illegal immigrants.

      1. GAYS ALREADY HAVE ALL THE MONEY!

        1. OK, then just homeless gays.

    2. Your wrong he did try to audit the FED .

      1. When?

    3. Oh, c’mon! Der Fed don’t steal nuthin.’ The weird “operation twist” and other issues didn’t cause our long, current-pres-term national econ nightmare.

      The Fed didn’t pass Dodd-Frank, which imposed an sort of “small bank tax” that has concentrated banking among huge banks and closed smaller ones.

      And the Fed didn’t pass Obamacare, which wreaks storied econ havoc.

      And the Fed hasn’t published a few tons of pages of new Fed workplace and EPA regs that block up biz.

      The Fed is screwy, and has done more harm than good, but it isn’t the cause of our Obama economy-which is so bad that even though it’s not in recession, this period of time is regularly referred to as “the great recession.” Obama, his Congressional supporters, and his executive branch fellow-believers in bureaucracy are.

  4. “Sanders doesn’t necessarily have a problem with the government getting involved in things

    This is what we refer to as “understatemewnt”.

    1. This is what we refer to as “understatemewnt”.

      By cats?

      1. +9 lives

  5. A series of articles earlier this month pointed out some of the similarities between Bernie Sanders’ current presidential campaign and the 2008/2012 Ron Paul campaigns.

    That’s an interesting comparison. Except that Sanders is known for his hostility towards freedom (always disguised as a concern for inequality and the power of Wall Street and other Proggie bromides,) while Paul was a promoter of freedom. There ends the similarity.

    1. True but you know what.

      I’d still rather see Bernie win the White House than any of the other declared or likely Democratic candidates and more than half of the declared/likely Republican candidates

    2. Paul like Ross , Obama and Clinton were 5th column for the controllers. You people must not play much chess. The country is right where Ron Paul and all who attacked the Dept. Of Education in the 1970’s wanted it to be. America is now a bunch of uneducated mob rules pure stupid religious nuts calling for their own kind of sharia law.

      1. Great, another looney tune. Go back where you came from, Louis.

      2. Lol, you fucking retard. Go back to Tumblr.

      3. Lol, you fucking retard. Go back to Tumblr.

  6. Trigger warning: this way lies madness.

    Most current college students grew up in the shadow of September 11, with the specter of large-scale terrorism always looming and with a steady stream of soldiers returning home to grapple with their demons. It is no wonder that they feel that they, too, deserve security, even in the precarious and flimsy form of trigger warnings and safe spaces.

    1. Most boomers grew up with a shooting war in Vietnam, the Cuban missile crises, and the ever-present threat of nuclear annihilation.

      Fuck trigger warnings.

      1. I’m inclined to agree with you here, kinnath, and I think growing up during or just after a “world war” and severe economic depression with its attendant food shortages and general uncertainty should have made an impression as well, assuming one was hypersensitive enough.

      2. Yah, and us generation xers grew up with… We grew up with… Stuff that kept us up at night too.

        1. Freddy Kreuger?

          1. I dunno, I was on the cusp. We were kinda freaked out about nuclear annihilation, but it was more abstract than say, during the Cuban middle crisis.

            My parents were much older than most of my contemporaries so I kind of had different sensibilities for an Xer. For instance, I’ve never once found a Kevin Smith movie funny or interesting.

    2. Except that I haven’t heard of veterans campaigning to shut down the neighborhood falafel and shawarma place because Middle Eastern food “triggers” them.

      1. Now there’s an angle. “This proposed mosque triggers me!”

        1. That angle has already been used several times.

      2. Depends…if the falafel sucks, it might trigger me…

    3. with a steady stream of soldiers returning home to grapple with their demons.

      Bullshit. The majority of college students have had zero personal contact with a soldier, period (on account of the limited geographic and demographic pool that most soldiers come from), and virtually none of them have had to deal with a soldier grappling with demons.

      1. I have not had to grapple demons. I once arm wrestled an imp, but that is about it.

        1. +1 detect invisibiity spell

      2. Considering about 0.3% of the total population has been deployed to ME since 2003, it’s relatively small pool to pull from.

        We had as many people deployed to VN at one time as we’ve had ever deployed to OIF/OEF.

      3. The reality of the situation is irrelevant. Veterans are a cheap way to score political points. Why do you hate the veterans, RC?

  7. So, basically, their similarity is “they appeal to the young’ens”.

    Paul ran to get his party to change course. Sanders is running to get his party to double down on stupid.

    Paul brought a lot of non-traditional voters for his party into his campaign. Pretty much everyone supporting Sanders would vote Democrat anyway.

    Paul is a libertarian. Sanders isn’t.

    1. The Sanders 2016 slogan: “Spend Harder!”

      1. If he runs in 2020 it could be “Spend Hard with a Vengence.”

        1. Sanders 2024 4.0: “Live Free or Spend Hard.”

    2. “Paul ran to get his party to change course. Sanders is running to get his party to double down on stupid.”

      I think Paul definitely differed more from the Republican Party and the political establishment than Sanders does. That said, I think Sanders’s base sees him in a similar way that Ron Paul fans saw him. Most Sanders fans think the Democrats have sold out, give in to Republicans, have been far too fiscally/economically conservative (as Ron Paul supporters think the GOP has been too far to the left on fiscal/economic issues), etc. And not to mention issues like war and civil liberties, where Sanders at least rhetorically has been much better than the Democratic Party. I think Sanders voters really do see him as representing a drastic change in course in Democratic and American politics. Even though I think they’re wrong in many regards, I do think there’s a similarity there in how they perceive him versus how Paul’s supporters saw him.

    3. “Paul brought a lot of non-traditional voters for his party into his campaign. Pretty much everyone supporting Sanders would vote Democrat anyway.”

      I think this, however, is pretty accurate. Most Sanders supporters, in my experience, while not happy with the Democratic Party, are still the kind of people who will support someone like Hillary just to stop the Republicans. The people who are too far left to support the Democratic Party generally tend to be full-on “abolish all private property, collective ownership of all the means of production” socialists and communists, and Sanders, who is more of a social democrat than a pure socialist, isn’t extreme enough either for most of those people.

    4. The only double down on stupid is to believe that if thing do not change to benefit the poor. They will kill every fucking rich person they see. It happens every 90 to 300 years no country has been immune. The uber rich love this because all those rich peoples money sits in their banks. This is arranged from time to time can’t have those non-bloods getting to much power.

      1. someone forgot to take their meds…

  8. His supporters, like Ron Paul’s facing the same narrative in 2008 and 2012, don’t agree.

    There is a major difference between the two campaigns, however, which the Sanders campaign is willfully ignoring: whereas in the 2008 and 2012 campaigns there wasn’t a Republican candidate anointed by the press and the party at the very beginning of each, the same cannot be said about the 2016 race for the Democratic nomination. The party and the press already have their queen in the chamber, waiting for the coronation. This means that Sanders has even less of a chance (probability ? 0) than Paul had in 2008 or even 2012.

  9. “[…]Hillary Clinton trying to sound like Bernie Sanders by saying the 1 percent needed “toppling” after she saw a chart on income inequality,[…]”

    I’m sure Clinton picking her own pocket will make an amusing YouTube vid.

  10. OT

    ceramics professor threatens gun rights student activist at Blinn in Texas.

    Story’s at https://www.thefire.org/ but link’s over 50 characters and nobody clicks on tinyURLs anymore.

    the lawsuit also alleges that Sanders’s ceramics professor threatened her with retaliation if she sought to take action against the school. Following the February 2 incident, which had received some news coverage, Professor Doug Peck allegedly told Sanders in front of four other people to “think really hard” before “bringing some organization to campus” that would “cause havoc” for the college. He went on to say he would “protect me and mine” and that she “better think” before taking any action.

    1. So FIRE can add attempted intimidation to the suit? Mr. Peck needs to STFU.

    2. You can’t color outside the Libes in Blinndergarten.

  11. Both have a devoted base?

    Both are considered whack-a-doodles by the press and general public?

    Neither will win a presidential election?

    Otherwise no difference.

    1. Otherwise no difference similarities.

  12. Most current college students grew up in the shadow of September 11, with the specter of large-scale terrorism always looming
    .
    The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.
    .
    The real threat is from fearmongering politicians who use the infinitesimal likelihood of *another 9/11!!!!* to erode our freedom. But go ahead, suckers, hide in your safe spaces closets and suck your thumbs.

  13. The comparison says nothing about the 2 candidates and everything about the media, which values superficiality over all.

    There is some truth, sadly, in their appeal = both represent the kind of “Hurr Durr”-Old-Man-Shakes-Fist-At-Clouds, anti-establishmentarianism that appeals to young people. It has, for lack of a better word, ‘Credibility’ because they’re obviously not running on their Youth, Rhetorical Suave, or Track Record of Successful Management of Vast Bureaucracies.

    They’re both the ‘outsider’ vote, and that’s all the media cares to consider.

    1. So in other words, they both shout, “get off my lawn!”

  14. …harebrained Robert Reich zero-sum economic “toppling” theory.

    HA!

  15. Most boomers grew up with a shooting war in Vietnam, the Cuban missile crises, and the ever-present threat of nuclear annihilation.
    .
    When I was in the third grade, the goddam President of the United States got snuffed, and they didn’t even let us out of school early, much less provide grief counseling.
    WHERE’S MY FUCKING COOKIE AND WARM MILK?

    1. I was in first grade.

    2. They did send us home, back in Kansas, at the time. I also remember the duck and cover exercises, like they wouldhave done any good, but hey, none of us felt triggered by them.

      1. Some people are really fucking old.

        1. They sure make me feel young with their Ben Franklin half-dollars.

        2. Get off my lawn!

  16. You know who else was a dark horse candidate that “couldn’t win”?

    1. Pat Paulson?

    2. Jesse “The Body” Ventura?

      1. Jesse is not stupid enough to run for President! The controllers would kill him just like JFK.

    3. Gary Johnson?

    4. George McGovern?

    5. Lord Commander Jon Snow?

      1. You know nothing, Jon Snow.

  17. Also, I’d love to know which economists nodded their heads in agreement as Hillary embraced this harebrained Robert Reich zero-sum economic “toppling” theory.

    Krugnutz?

    1. Hillary, “toppling the 1%” should begin at home. You first.

      1. What cracks me up is people eat that shit up from 1%ers like Hillary or Soros or Michael Moore or Buffet.

        I want to scream “GEORGE SOROS IS THE 1% OF THE 1%, FERCHRISSAKES!!!”

    2. The quoted text said “economist”. Not to be pedantic or anything.

  18. I met my dad’s latest girlfriend today. She’s a flaming liberal, and a god-fearin’ Christian (my dad is a flaming libertarian atheist). She’s nice and all, but dayum. Widowers really don’t take the time to window shop, do they?

    1. No we don’t. At a certain point, we don’t even buy green bananas. Let us have our fun in the last sexually productive minutes of our lives.

    2. Sounds like a good match. They won’t lack for things to talk about.

  19. Except Bernie Sanders does not have any ties to racist letters and he can WIN! Barnie Sanders is a real man of the people. Ron Paul was a misdirection put up by the controllers just like Obama and the Clinton’s. The bankers have not gone to jail they’ve gotten richer. See the point! Time to make this count. Sink or swim I am voting for Bernie Sanders or no one. That is my pledge. If all of us take this route we reshape this country. You may say very well that would give it to the republicans. What is the difference. A choice of suck or suck I say, a vote for either is a vote for the enemy. Well Bernie doesn’t suck he rules!

    1. the clinton’s what?

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    1. Just stop. You’re making the uncanny valley bigger than the Grand Canyon.

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