Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders' Protectionism & Nativist Economics is Neither New Nor Smart

The Vermont socialist running for Democratic presidential nomination once launched war on Chinese bobbleheads.

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Sen. Bernie Sanders, the independent-socialist Vermont senator running for the Democratic presidential nomination, has a message for all youse fat cats out there:

Sanders has a nativist streak that extends to both economics and immigration policy.

Recall, for instance, that he tut-tutted about "open borders" as a "right-wing" plot hatched by the Koch brothers "that would make everybody in America poorer." (It's not a small point, but he's wrong about the effects of larger levels of immigration on Americans' standards of living.)

And when it comes to straight-up economic policy, Sanders is the sort of guy who can't say no. The Wall Street Journal just touted up his campaign proposals and found they would add $18 trillion in new spending over the next decade if implemented.

At the same time, his you-better-build-it-here-or-else Twitter threats are nothing new. Back in 2011, Sanders declared war on Chinese bobbleheads that were being sold at Smithsonian Institution museum gift shops in Washington, D.C. (Off topic but worth tossing out there: Why don't protectionists ever insist that Americans can only use American ideas and policies? It's weird that the one thing that right-wing and left-wing protectionists will always allow into the country of their minds is ideas that got from somewhere else.)

"In the gift shops," Sanders said, "we should not be selling statues of the founding fathers of this country that were made in China." At the time, the Smithsonian was selling items both made in America and in China. The foreign items cost almost half as much, partly because they were labor costs were lower and the quality more iffy. But thanks to Sanders' intervention and economic jingoism, the Smithsonian agreed to sell more American stuff. At higher prices, naturally. Who exactly is that good for? The customers who buy less stuff? The domestic manufacturers who move less merchandise? The shop staff whose hours are cut due to slumping sales?

But that's egghead-talk. "A museum owned by the people—a museum which talks about our own history—cannot even have products manufactured in the United States by our own workers?" said an exasperated Sanders. "We've got some very serious, serious problems."

Yeah, no. As Sallie James, a trade policy analyst at the Cato Institute explained, there's absolutely no reason to bemoan the loss of jobs in the on-the-grow souvenir thimble and bobblehead sectors.

"Why is it embarrassing that we no longer manufacture trinkets here?" James countered. "We still manufacture plenty of stuff in America. It's just not the stuff you see on the gift-shop shelves."

If and when Sanders wins the Democratic nomination and then the White House itself, expect to see him pushing for all sorts of closed-border actions. He's on the record denouncing China for selling us things at low, low prices and he hates trades deals such as NAFTA, CAFTA, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (this last, by the way, is an attempt by a dozen countries to create a countervaling force to China's economy, the largest on the planet).

I'm willing to grant that when it comes to war and many social issues, Sanders is as close to libertarian positions as anyone currently running. He's against elective wars and is pro-marriage equality. When it comes to the drug war, he's not the pot-legalizing hippie Hillary Clinton and most Republicans assume him to be, but he's serious about loosening the leash on pot and emptying the prisons of non-violent offenders.

Good for him on all that.

But when it comes to basic economics, Sanders is totally out to lunch, which I assume he also believes should be free.

Indeed, his understanding of how markets work doesn't even rise to the level of off-base zero-sum economics. Not long ago, he went on an inspired rant built on the idea that consumer choice somehow meant that children must go starving: "You don't necessarily need a choice of 23 underarm spray deodorants or of 18 different pairs of sneakers when children are hungry in this country." This is not the type of guy you want helping to make rules for a country whose economy is not only complex but already burdened with a never-ending series of large and small regulations while battling increased competition from around the world.

Exit question: Would a President Sanders demand that the National Zoo's pandas be returned to China so that two American bears can get those jobs?

Watch "Bernie Sanders' War on Chinese Bobbleheads!," which was produced by Josh Swain and Michael Moynihan for Reason.tv back in 2011:

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  1. Sanders 2016: For those times when you keep agreeing with what Donald Trump says about Mexicans, but you can’t bring yourself to let loose and start swearing about the fucking beaners stealing your job.

    1. That’s FUNNY!

    2. Reason’s version of editorial balance:

      Several articles declaring multiple GOP candidates to be insane vs. one article noting that, gosh darn it, one particular Democratic candidate just isn’t being fully realistic.

    3. I click on the video so I can get more of Sally James, and the first thing I see is smarmy Diane Sawyer. Talk about a ooner killer.

      1. dammit ! boner killer

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  2. In a sane and just world, Sanders would be swinging from the nearest lamppost, before his remains would be gibbeted in the town square.

    But alas, our world is neither sane nor just.

    1. In a sane and just world nobody would be murdered for his beliefs and Bernie Sanders would be managing an organic juice shop in downtown Vermont.

      1. Yeah, I’m not on board with lynching socialists or anyone else.

        Oh, and “downtown Vermont”?

        1. When your state is the size of a postage stamp, you deserve comments like Downtown Vermont.

          1. If Vermont is the size of a postage stamp, what does that make Rhode Island?

        2. Akk and of all the people on your list, Bernie’s up top? I think I’d use up all the rope and speaker wire available before I ever got down to even considering him. And a decent society would confine itself to stoning and garrotting of criminals. Three reasons to kill somebody: defense of property, retribution, and to expiate the dishonour that was brought on the community by the perpetrator of an heinous crime. Those olt-timey, over-the-top, farcical medi?val methods of execution and these newfangled mechanised monstrosities, neither one is justifiable as a means to kill somebody for any of those three reasons.

        3. Assuming that meant downtown Burlington, the Berkeley of the Northeast.

      2. HM’s talk of killing would be in response to Sander’s attempts to *force* his evil ideas on us, not just for holding them.

        1. Hush now! Hugh is mounting his latest attempt to assault the summit of Mt. Moral Superiority. Don’t distract him!

          1. I built a cabin on Mt. Moral Superiority, out of my own virtuous purity. It has no running water.

            1. Figures you’d go off the grid. Just to drone on and on about how you don’t “watch TV”.

            2. Your composting toilet is overflowing.

            3. Your straw cabin won’t last through the New England winter.

          2. Hipster douches gonna hipster.

        1. Well, assistant managing. He keeps trying to unionize the teenagers who work there, but they always quit at the end of the summer and go find real jobs.

          1. I’m beginning to understand why my Orange Julius franchise wasn’t a moneymaker.

            1. Maybe you can tell me what the yummy stuff at the bottom of an Orange Julius is. It’s not worth the sugar and calories to actually have an Orange Julius again, but I remember that last bit through the straw from the teenage years.

      3. I dunno, I find myself contemplating a world where any politician who uses the words “children” or “safety” in a way remotely related to policy (properly recorded of course) is summarily executed.

      4. And Bernie’s organic juice shop would be all locally sourced to protect Vermont jobs. Only three flavors: apple, maple syrup, and burlap.

      5. Managing an organic juice shop requires a minimal degree of real world business sense, something that is so far beyond Sanders as quantum mechanics is beyond a pet hamster.

      6. and Bernie Sanders would be managing an organic juice shop

        You think he is in any way qualified to run a business?

    2. Commies lost the right to whine about sanctity of life 100,000,000 murders ago. Fuck him and his kind.

      1. I think it’s a lot harder to make a principled argument for the sanctity of life than it would be to make one for the sanctity of property. I think there’s a problem with treating the right to life as an irreducible thing on the same level as right to liberty and property. Perhaps there’s no real reason to even consider it, as any question of life will tend to quite naturally fall already under the heading of liberty or property or both. Life isn’t really a right that a moral being chuses to enact, but rather a sort of ?thereal substrate upon which everything else is suspended. And unlike others, as soon as one obstructs the subject’s life, the subject exits play and no longer functions as a moral being in this plane and so effectively suffers no injury. This is in contrast to liberty and property which are voluntarily exercised, the obstruction of which constitutes injury, and which can never be entirely stopped so long as the subject remains in play.

        1. I onced read a novel set in a community where there was no value placed on life. Assassinating someone in a shameful way that dishonoured the community was punished, as was infringements on other’s liberty and property, but murdering someone in an honorable fashion (by their conventions) was no big deal.

          1. I didn’t get that from “A Song of Ice and Fire” at all.

  3. Conversation I had with my 70 year old mom last night…

    Mom: Democrats want to elect Bernie Sanders.

    Me: Yeah, I know.

    Mom: But he’s a Socialist.

    Me: Yeah, I know.

    Mom: But how could anyone in in this country think it’s a good idea to elect a Socialist?

    Me: I don’t think many of them have any idea what Socialism is or means.

    Mom: What? Are they that fucking stupid?

    Me: Yes, yes they are.

    1. If Mom said “fucking”, I respect her.

      1. I’m hearing her say it with an ethnic accent. Say it’s so, SoCal.

        1. I hope she’s filipina and said “pucking”.

  4. TRUMP/SANDERS 1916 FTW!!!

    1. Trump/Sanders/Biden for the even bigger win!!

      1. A Sanderswich? Ewwwwww.

        1. You must have meant: EEEEEEEWWWWGE!!

      2. Hey, if we get Shrill in there, she can bury the evidence!

        1. If they also invite Bill and Huma, they can have an epic senior orgy.

      3. You need to work Warren in there, somewhere.

  5. I still don’t see how Trump is supposedly popular in the GOP. I have yet to meet, and I do know a lot of Baby Boomer conservatives, anyone that has mentioned his name. Could it be that those that are polled are not likely voters?

    1. Is it a given that his and Carson’s numbers will translate at the primary polls? Would be hilarious if we were actually at the same place more or less that we were at in June.

      1. I want to know how many religious conservatives were polled? I can’t for the life of me seeing them voting for a narcissist and void of any humbleness that makes up The Donald.

    2. The Galtitarian|9.15.15 @ 11:54PM|#
      “I still don’t see how Trump is supposedly popular in the GOP. I have yet to meet, and I do know a lot of Baby Boomer conservatives, anyone that has mentioned his name.”

      I haven’t asked, but no on has volunteered “The Donald!” among those with whom I speak. I’m speculating that those who are disgruntled are focusing on him, since he’s loud and griping about a lot of things many people gripe about.
      Once (and if) they focus on his actual claims and see the internal contradictions, I’ll presume they’ll bail,
      But, hey, it worked for Obo; who knows?

      1. The only people who I know who speak well of Trump are Sanders fans. I remain convinced that Trump’s standings in the polls are due to his supporters being the sort who are angry enough to actually sit by the phone and wait to pick up and actually ANSWER the polls just to have someone to tell how angry they are at the Establishment. Meanwhile, everyone else hears the phone ring at dinnertime and opts to let it go to the machine…

    3. The GOP is a lot more diverse than the DFL because the latter has become so radical. Trump speaks to populist moderates and emotional conservatives, most of whom vote Republican out of tradition or who are disenfranchised Democrats.

      1. The DFL? You’re from Minnesota, right?

        1. I don’t know anymore

          1. I have 1/16th of a farm to sell you if you want to stay in MN. Do you have plow experience?

    4. In circles in which I swish around, Trump is the only candidate, of any denomination, that I’ve heard anyone enthusiasticly supporting (except my wife, who’s a hardcore Paul supporter, but she hardly counts for anything). Most the supporters of Trump are along the lines of, “He’s a winner. He’s going to win. So he’s got my vote!” rather than enthusiasm based on any clear ideological basis. Even the few democrats seem strikingly unenthusiastic about Clinton; they tend to say something similar, along the lines of “She’s going to win, so she’s got my vote,” but without the exclamation point and a sort of sour note to it. This seems different to prevous presidential elections, in which a majority of people I knew had a clear preference of some sort by now (whether they changed it later on or not, notwithstanding).

    5. That’s sort of the Pauline Kael fallacy. The people you’re hearing from, if they’re anything like the demographic here, isn’t Donald Trump’s target demographic. Trump is targeting fairly uneducated, economically insecure voters. They’re the kind of people who’ll say “Oooh, Donald Trump, I know him from TV.” And they’re the kind of people who’ll respond to his nativism.

      Also, don’t discount the embarrassment factor. A lot of people know that saying they’re voting for Trump to people they know they’re not exactly going to establish their reputation for judgement and good sense.

    6. Voting doesn’t come into it — you’re going to get poled, in any case.

      1. phrasing

    7. That’s easy. Look at the rest of the field.

  6. I hate it when people treat Sander’s like he’s just ‘naive’ but otherwise means well. No. He’s fucking evil.

    1. Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito.

    2. He’s not evil, but he’s also not naive. He just has more ambition than smarts.

        1. Yes, he’s evil and ignorant of the harm he proposes.
          He’s both evil and stupid.

          1. He’s a floor wax and a dessert topping.

            1. It’s delicious.
              And look at that shine.

        2. Maybe I’m too trusting, but I generally assume liberals aren’t evil until they prove to be corrupt psychopaths benefiting from their stated beliefs, like Hillary.

          Bernie strikes me as an incredibly sentimental liberal with political heft. He’s an airhead.

          I’ve just known so many liberals who were functionally retarded. I assume that is the case until proven otherwise

          1. Bernie strikes me as an incredibly sentimental liberal with political heft.

            People like Bernie are the reason Venezuela and Cuba are in complete shit. They were the ones who ruined the UK to the point of undertaker strike letting bodies pile up. He knows he’s right and his policies will never cause problems, thus any problems can solved by intensifying his policies. If that’s mere stupidity, it’s on such epic scale that it becomes evil.

            1. Stupidity on an epic scale sounds like a good summation of politics to me.

              How about, what difference at this point does it make…and we leave it at that

              1. “Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.”

                -Groucho Marx

                “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.”

                -H. L. Mencken

                1. Excellent quotations, thank you. Worthy of the limited memory remaining in my biological hard drive.

            2. People like Bernie are the reason Venezuela and Cuba are in complete shit.

              True, but to me Bernie is one of the deluded do-gooders who ends up in the camp or prison within a year of the revolution. He’s not one of the ones running the camps, like, say, Bill Ayers would be. And he’s not one of the ones hobnobbing with the camp commandante, like Obama would be.

              1. So, he’s Trotsky?

                1. Trotsky was no peacenik and the USSR would have possibly been just as bloody with him at the helm.

                2. No, he’s more like one of the Mensheviks who soon ended up in the Lubyanka, or in Siberia.

          2. Maybe I’m too trusting, but I generally assume liberals aren’t evil until they prove to be corrupt psychopaths benefiting from their stated beliefs, like Hillary.

            As much as it pains me to say it, I’ll take a corrupt psychopath like Hillary over a Bernie Sanders. The corrupt psychopaths can never steal as much as the Sanders of the world can destroy. And, just from a calculation perspective, they’ll avoid destroying the goose that lays the golden eggs.

            1. So would Robert Mugabe be a corrupt psychopath? If so you does not fit well into your paradigm of limited damage.

          3. Maybe I’m too trusting, but I generally assume liberals aren’t evil

            That depends on your definition of “evil”. You seem to think that being evil requires deliberate intent. But most evil people delude themselves into thinking that, on balance, they are doing good; that any harm they are causing is a regrettable but unavoidable step towards achieving a greater good.

            Bernie strikes me as an incredibly sentimental liberal with political heft. He’s an airhead.

            And an airhead with too much power is pretty much what evil usually ends up being.

      1. He is actually implying to the electorate that consumer choice, a.k.a. the exercise of free will in matters of commerce, is responsible for children starving. His solutions to every problem, real or imagined, begin and end with state-sponsored theft, imprisonment, and murder. If that’s not evil, it doesn’t exist.

      2. He’s a die hard socialist. He is consistent, he wants gov’t to be the one to tell you who you can do business with, where you can do business, when you can do business, how much you can charge to do business, who you can hire, how much you can make, how much you are worth, etc. Gov’t Uber Alles

    3. I try to convince his fans that he’s as much of a busybody, authoritarian prick as any evangelical conservative they rail against. He just wants to force the country to adopt his personal preferences about what to buy and how to run a business, rather than what goes on in the bedroom or what you can put in your body. You can’t buy bobble-heads made by a Chinaman, and you should only need that one deodorant, because that’s what Bernie wants! His kind is the reason Yankee is a slur.

      Look at that stupid tweet up there. I’m sure his fans see it as tough straight talk, but it’s no different than, say, Ben Carson tweeting something like, “I’ve got a message for you dope smugglers out there: your days of corrupting our children are coming to an end.”

    4. I hate it when people treat Sander’s like he’s just ‘naive’ but otherwise means well. No. He’s fucking evil.

      Welcome to modern America where mainstream news outlets discuss politicians with demonstrated crackpot ideas as “necessary alternative voices”– as long as the crackpot is on the left.

      It makes me want to strangle kittens when the Seattle Times discusses a woman who believes in the economic equivalent of creation science as “an important populist voice in the council”.

      First of all, they don’t understand populism, because if they did, they’d realize Trump’s appeal is exactly that, populism, and I guaran-fucking-tee the Seattle Times wouldn’t give Trump or his ideas a fucking pico-second pass if he ran for the city council.

      1. Who was the writer?

        I know a writer for the Seattle times

        1. I don’t remember, it was something said in passing on an article about the Seattle Times. Just one of those offhand remarks in an article about how the council “needs a populist voice” referring to Sawant. You know, because the city council is just full of Republican faithful turning the city into a survival-of-the-fittest anarcho-capitalist killing field.

    5. I wouldn’t say evil, per se. Evil assumes active malice, and I’ve seen no real evidence of that. Of course, malice assumes active thought and consideration, and I’ve seen no real evidence of that, either.

      What I see with Bernie Sanders is wildly underdeveloped ego. Not ego in the Donald Trump sense, but ego in the genuine sense, in the sense of a sense of self. Like a lot of leftists, he doesn’t see the world through cognition or reason, but through his FEELZ. And, like the spoiled petulant, child his underdeveloped ego has rendered him, he expects the adults in the room to make things right for his FEELZ.

      You see, Bernie doesn’t want there to be really rich people while there are really poor people! Mommy and Daddy need to fix it!

      Bernie doesn’t want companies to offshore jobs! Mommy and Daddy need to fix it!

      Bernie wants free healthcare! Mommy and Daddy need to fix it!

      The list goes on. It’s not strictly evil, per se. My guess is that, if he were ever faced with the consequences of his policies, his response would be, “But, that’s not what I WANTED!!”

      1. Evil assumes active malice, and I’ve seen no real evidence of that. Of course, malice assumes active thought and consideration, and I’ve seen no real evidence of that, either.

        Most evil acts are justified either as defensive against an aggressor or as a necessary sacrifice towards achieving a greater good. I don’t think even Hitler or Stalin would qualify for your definition of “evil”.

        1. Yes, they would. You’re conflating intention of evil and malice. The two are not at all the same. Malice isn’t defined by good or evil intentions, but the intent to harm. I’d argue that malice is a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for evil. The remaining question is when is an act of ill will justified. But, that doesn’t mean there is no requirement of intending to harm. And I think it goes without saying that Hitler and Stalin both intended to harm their respective targets.

          1. He does intend harm. Listen to him talk. He intends to steal property from some to redistribute to the people he finds worthy. He’s a liar, and a cynical, manipulative one at that, espousing economic suicide that will harm everyone but him and his cronies in order to gain votes. There’s your malice, if you need it.

          2. And I think it goes without saying that Hitler and Stalin both intended to harm their respective targets.

            The US military also intended to harm Nazis troops in WWII, so fighting the Nazis was also “evil” according to you? I don’t think so.

            Hitler and Stalin deluded themselves into believing that they were defending people against aggression and exploitation. Yes, they “intended harm”, but they believed it was for a greater good. For the first half of Hitler’s regime, he was taking away property from people who he thought didn’t deserve it and handing it to people he thought did deserve it. The Nazis formulated systematic mass murder as a policy only after they entered WWII and had a population of millions of people that they had deprived property, homes, and livelihoods and that they thought might fight back at some point.

            If you replace “the rich” and “the 1%” with “the Jews” in Sanders speeches, you’re pretty much back to early NSDAP rhetoric. After all, the primary reason Hitler hated “the Jews” was because he thought they were all “unproductive”, “bankers”, and “profiteers”. I don’t think it will ever go as far in the US as that, if not for any other reason than that sending all “rich white males” to concentration camps is a lot harder than sending all “profiteering Jews” to concentration camps. But Sanders does intend harm, and for the same reasons as his ideological predecessors.

  7. Let’s stick it to the 1%!!!

    Oh, I meant the 1% of the world. How does Bernie feel about that?

    1. You mean US upper and middle class? He’s way down on sticking it to them, except, of course, the Responsible Workers, Honest Intelligentia, Cultural Workers and anyone else who doesn’t really belong to the 1%, whatever their income.

      1. If we take his plan worldwide, even the poorest Americans have to shell out for the “less fortunate”.

        1. I don’t think he has a problem with that. Provided that “less fortunate” go Commie as a condition of receiving this money.
          The man is evil. The amount of stupidity needed to pretend you don’t understand the end game of the politics you spew is so huge he would have died years ago because he forgot to breathe.

  8. I hope that Cato-scholar came with a permanent visa I’m suddenly even more pro-immigration.

    1. Female, libertarian, Australian accent, gorgeous.

      whispers *great white buffalo*

      On an imperceptibly less pervy note, a sane country would have open immigration for attractive females.

  9. “I’ve got a message for corporate America: if you want us to buy your products, you better start producing them here in the United States.”

    Or else we’ll buy them from….

    Idiot.

    1. Easy. Or else we’ll seize your bobblehead factories and start making them here ourselves. And if you don’t have any bobblehead factories, there will be a comprehensive Five Year Plan to ensure full bobblehead sufficiency.

    2. In fairness to Sanders, he’s running for the office of Commander in Chief. I believe that if he’s in keeping with his socialist principles, the “or else” is he’s going to stoke up the firing squads.

      Remember, Playa, socialist. By definition, it means there’s a LOT of violence that’s going to need outsourcing.

      Shovel-ready jobs, all that grave-digging.

      1. “And I would have gotten away with it too, if it weren’t for you meddling kids the second amendment.”

    3. Don’t worry, our glorious scientific socialist agriculture will just find ways to grow pineapples and coffee and cocoa in Vermont.

  10. The other hilarious point is that those cheap bobblehead trinkets are all going to be 3D-printed before long. All those jobs, lost, no matter what you do Bernie. You can’t win.

    1. But he and his ilk can sure kill a lot of folks tryin’!

  11. For a couple years, I focused my reading on 18th and 19th century texts. Smith, Hume, Condorcet, Cantillon, Say, Constant, Bastiat, Spencer… and it frequently amazed me to see these guys so easily and completely demolish the tribal economic arguments that are still being peddled today. Some of it felt so relevant to contemporary economic debates that I’d start laughing. And I get that feeling again anytime I see something from Sanders.

    He says it’s a “very serious, serious problem” that a trinket is not made domestically? An obese Scotsman settled this shit 250 years ago, you moron! Use your brain for two seconds and think about it! Goddamnit!

    1. Deep breaths, my friend.

      I’ve been told by many a prog that classical economics was superseded by the teachings of Keynesus Christ, so all that silly stuff about comparative advantage, supply and demand, and the iron law of wages no longer applies.

      Marx was the first prophet and Keynes was the last, with none in the middle, according to them.

      1. There is no god but Marx, and Keynes is his Prophet!

        1. That makes no sense. Marxists have no need for Keynes. The prototypical totalitarian putting Keynesian ideas into practice was Hitler.

    2. Libertarians (and all economic conservatives) really need to up their game about this protectionist crap that’s coming from both parties. There’s too much effort spent on social issues. Sort out the economic problems, and a better economy takes a lot of the pressure off the social issues, anyway. Part of the reason the left loves to argue social issues is because it means they don’t have to talk economics, because they know they can be proven wrong there.

      1. Sort out the economic problems, and a better economy takes a lot of the pressure off the social issues,

        What social issues are rooted in economics? No matter what minority or economic class you are part off, you are much better off as an American than if you lived anywhere else in the world.

        Part of the reason the left loves to argue social issues is because it means they don’t have to talk economics, because they know they can be proven wrong there.

        Are you kidding? If even a Nobel-prize winning economist like Krugman can believe and promulgate the b.s. he does, obviously economics is as inaccessible to rational arguments as social issues.

        1. A lot of the social issues are rooted in poverty.

          I believe the left hammers on race/gender/sexual orientation so much these days because it’s where they have an advantage. Yes, Krugman exists, but he’s easier to counter than the “You’re just haters!’ stuff.

  12. “Nativist”

    Yeah sure but does he have a xenophobic cunt mouth?

    1. It shows how far we’ve fallen that anyone objecting to tens of millions of poor, uneducated illegal aliens added to a broke welfare state is somehow a “nativist” “racist” “xenophobe.” No need for careful distinctions or discussions of scale, nope, it’s ALL OR NOTHING.

      It’s telling that Reason has been so quiet on The Camp of the Saints situation in Europe. It really exposes how immigration is an Achilles’ Heel for libertarianism. But it takes some ideological blindness to ignore the downsides of moving hundreds of thousands of military-age Muslim men (plus a scattering of mothers, children, and old folks) from their Islamic shithole countries into the welfare states of Western Europe. If only 1% of a million people are terror-supporters, that’s 1,000 people, and anyone should be able to imagine the havoc that 1,000 people can wreak.

      And you’d be a fool to think that figure is as low as 1%….

      1. its telling that someone seriously thinks its easier and more humane to exclude these people than to stop the welfare train. That a wall around the country is a better idea than reforming our own broken system. That someone would bitch that these people should stay home and fix ‘their own country’s problems’ (as if nationality was some sort of indelible trait rather than a matter of convenience) but thinks the best idea for his own country is not to roll up his sleeves and work to fix *its* problems, just lock people out of prosperity in the fear that they *might* make it worse.

        1. Yes, it’s easier to enforce immigration law than end the welfare state. In any case, the order matters. You can’t have both, you can’t have unlimited mass immigration and then somehow, later, end the welfare state. That’s bankruptcy. You have to end the welfare state first.

          1. Yes, it’s easier to enforce immigration law than end the welfare state.

            So what? A massive welfare state with strong restrictions on immigration may or may not be fiscally more prudent than a massive welfare state without strong restrictions on immigration, but both are lousy ideas, and neither is more libertarian than the other.

            In any case, the order matters. You can’t have both, you can’t have unlimited mass immigration and then somehow, later, end the welfare state. That’s bankruptcy.

            The welfare state means bankruptcy either way, because economically, it makes no difference whether your “refugees” come from Syria or impoverished inner cities. Possibly, letting in more refugees causes bankruptcy faster, or it may cause political change to happen faster, I don’t know: that’s simply a question of complex political and economic tradeoffs that have nothing to do with what kind of government we actually ought to have.

            1. because economically, it makes no difference

              It’s a common failing among libertarians to view everything economically… there are factors involving language, culture, customs, religion, social trust….

          2. Really? It’s cheaper and easier to pay a bunch of police and national guardsmen to round ’em up and ship ’em off than it is to just give them an EBT card?

            Citation needed.

            1. We’re already paying the police. Enforcing immigration law doesn’t add much cost, probably far less than the many billions of welfare costs due to illegal immigration and refugees. Illegals cost LA alone over $1 billion a year.

            2. Since you’re already paying for the guard that’s pretty easy to prove. Guard plus EBT, is more than just guard.

      2. It shows how far we’ve fallen that anyone objecting to tens of millions of poor, uneducated illegal aliens added to a broke welfare state is somehow a “nativist” “racist” “xenophobe.”

        The only possible solution to that is to fix the broke welfare state.

        Sanders wants to expand the welfare state and then adopts nativism and trade barriers because it fools his supporters into thinking that somehow those make his idiotic policies work.

        It’s telling that Reason has been so quiet on The Camp of the Saints situation in Europe. It really exposes how immigration is an Achilles’ Heel for libertarianism.

        Where do you see a conflict between immigration and libertarianism? In a libertarian world, you can move anywhere, but you automatically have to support yourself and convince others to associate with you voluntarily.

        1. What would libertarians do without the welfare state? It’s their all-purpose get-out-of-jail-free card! Illegal immigration is only a problem because of the welfare state, so we should get rid of it, but government enforcing gay marriage is also ok, because we know perfectly well we aren’t going to be getting rid of it anytime soon. I don’t even notice that libertarians are even seriously challenging the welfare state any longer. I see dozens of articles calling for drug legalization, gay marriage and open borders, but nary a one calling for canceling food stamps, repealing welfare, or shuttering the public schools. It’s merely their whipping boy when the public impact of their preferred policies is pointed out to them. “That’s not a problem with (fill in the blank policy), that’s a problem with the welfare state! Somebody oughtta get rid of it!”, while hoping no one notices that nobody, not even the libertarians, is seriously considering any such possibility.

          1. It’s their all-purpose get-out-of-jail-free card!

            Actually, there are a couple more: rent seeking, crony capitalism, and majoritarianism.

            but government enforcing gay marriage is also ok, because we know perfectly well we aren’t going to be getting rid of it anytime soon

            I happen to agree with that, but that has nothing to do with libertarianism.

            I see dozens of articles calling for drug legalization, gay marriage and open borders, but nary a one calling for canceling food stamps, repealing welfare, or shuttering the public schools

            Your selective blindness isn’t a problem with libertarianism. Libertarians do call for privatizing social security, medical insurance, and the educational system. As for welfare and food stamps, libertarians are split between abolishing them, negative income taxes, and a basic income.

        2. Where do you see a conflict between immigration and libertarianism?

          “Freedom of movement” sounds nice, but there are conflicts with the real world. As Milton Friedman pointed out, you can’t have open borders and a welfare state, because the welfare state then goes broke (or broke faster), as we are seeing now.

          Plus, libertarians ignore non-economic factors. As societies become more multicultural, social trust decreases. And it depends on where the immigrants are from. Part of the reason Latin America sucks is that it’s filled with Latin Americans. They tend to vote for “socialism.” Millions of them come here, and guess what they think they should vote for? And this is, of course, an entirely intentional plan on the part of the left and Democrats: they are “electing a new people.” It was proven that the UK Labour Party did the exact same thing, to gain an advantage over the Tories. Do you think Democrats would be so pro-immigration if immigrant were libertarians or conservatives? Of course not. Look how hostile they are to Cuban immigrants, who tend to dislike “socialism.”

      3. Maybe it is applied to “anyone,” but it is the correct label for Sanders. He is a nativist.

        1. A “nativist socialist” who cares about “workers”…

      4. Cuz fanatical Islamists and Latin Americans are totally the same thing.

  13. I found this free lunch…

  14. Wow, Sanders and his supporters are really in a race for the bottom with Trump and his supporters.

  15. I have a question for the rest of the electorate:

    Is this all some massive joke I haven’t been in on? Are we trying to see “what’s the worst president we can possibly find”? We’ve gone through Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, who’ve been awful, but at least plausible, to this crowd. I mean Bernie Sanders? The guy’s an economic illiterate. With Hillary, we’re looking at a candidate running to keep from getting indicted. Donald Trump? A guy who talks about how “hot” his daughter is? And wants to destroy the international trading system?

    This has all got to be some kind of joke, right? Did I miss the e-mail?

    1. It’s a joke, yeah. But we’re not in on it, we’re the butt of the joke.

  16. Has ‘Reason’ considered a bobble head of the Jacket?
    Might be some easy money there.

  17. How can someone who wants to limit freedom of the press to those organizations the government recognizes as press as a central plank of his campaign get credit as being the best candidate on social issues?

    1. Pot, Mexicans and butt-sex, Mickey, pot, Mexicans and butt-sex.

      That’s what freedom is about.

      1. I think you’re confusing “freedom” with “your weekend”.

    2. Was this from bern? yikes

      1. That is effectively what is meant by overturning Citizens United.

  18. Ok. Time to audit Bernie Sanders’ purchases. He’s buying 100% made in the USA, right?

    1. I wonder where the device his tweet was entered on was made…

  19. But when it comes to basic economics, Sanders is totally out to lunch, which I assume he also believes should be free.

    Indeed, his understanding of how markets work doesn’t even rise to the level of off-base zero-sum economics.

    Ha! I knew it! I knew Tony had to be Sanders’ sock puppet!

    By the way, neither is the current pope’s understanding of economics raise to the level of off-base zero-sum economics. Both are incredibly clueless and sound foolish when talking about economic issues.

  20. “add $18 trillion in new spending over the next decade”

    Which is total bullshit, but I somehow knew it would be reprinted uncritically here.

    1. Re: American Stolid,

      Which is total bullshit

      “It is calumny! Defamation! Exaggeration with malicious intent!

      It will only be 17.5 trillion!”

      1. You guys keep referring to a zero-sum fallacy. I don’t know what that means.

        Is that like a.) when your employer pays you $1,000 less because she has to pay for your healthcare or b.) when you pay $1,000 more in taxes and get a $1,000 raise from your employer because she doesn’t have to pay for your healthcare? And then right-wingers at the WSJ tally up that tax increase as an onerous increase in expenses for the middle class?

        1. You guys keep referring to a zero-sum fallacy. I don’t know what that means.

          There is no “zero sum fallacy” in “add $18 trillion in new spending”; new spending is new spending, no matter what you think you get in return.

          However, the return on government spending is negative overall; if there was a positive return, government wouldn’t need to intervene.

        2. Is that like a.) when your employer pays you $1,000 less because she has to pay for your healthcare or b.) when you pay $1,000 more in taxes and get a $1,000 raise from your employer because she doesn’t have to pay for your healthcare? And then right-wingers at the WSJ tally up that tax increase as an onerous increase in expenses for the middle class?

          When my employer spends $1000 on private insurance for me, he gets a lot more than when the government spends $1000 on my insurance. That’s because the latter is subject to extensive lobbying and crony capitalism. So, yes, shifting health insurance payments from private actors to the government is an “onerous increase in expenses for the middle class”; we pay the same amount, but get less for it.

          1. I think the best zero-sum fallacy is “You didn’t build that.”

            See, when you say you created something, you’re just pretending. You can’t create anything. You can only redistribute. Because we’re too stupid to think of ways to create things, but we have redistribution down. And if we’re ignorant of anything, then it doesn’t exist.

        3. It’s true that it may not actually be $18 trillion of new spending. But I think it’s hilarious that Sanders fans think that we’re just going to redirect all $18 trillion smoothly through the government and it won’t add a dime. When was the last time that adding a pile of bureaucrats to something made it cheaper and more efficient?

  21. Last time I checked, we manufacture about 25% of global output, and have done so for decades. [citation needed]

    I guess people miss the good old days post-WWII when we had just bombed the living fck out of our competitors.

    1. One would think that, at the point to you need a strategic bombing campaign against another continent to bring out the correct state of national manufacturing, that perhaps it’s not such a great idea for adding value to the world.

  22. Fact: Sanders, like Trump and all the rest of the candidates, is a fraud.

    Fact: there are no political solutions for _any_ problem; never have been, never will be – not “right wing”, not “left wing” , not even “Ron Paul”, or “libertarian” solutions.

    Fact: As long as you believe that political solutions really do exist, dear reader, you will remain firmly trapped inside “the Matrix”; i.e. exactly where the Obama’s, Trumps, Sanders , Pauls, Reason-type magazines etc. want you to be:-)

    Fact: the author of this article is just another in an endless stream of “inside the matrix” writers going their utmost to keep you firmly entrenched “inside the matrix” by encouraging/flattering yours and others here silly delusions of dreamed of political “solutions” to yours, or the country’s, or the world’s, problems, when in fact, there are none, can be none, and never have been any 🙂 .

    Regards, onebornfree.
    http://www.onebornfree.blogspot.com

    1. Say something about how jet fuel can’t melt steel!

  23. This is pretty classic socialism/communism as practiced throughout the 20th century.

    See, these socialist/commie proggies really want to arrange the world into a worker’s socialtopia. But, they can only really regulate a country at a time.

    This presents a problem when existing in a world with other countries, especially capitalist ones, which actually produce goods and services efficiently. If you allow free trade, the next thing you know, the citizens are buying foreign goods and ruining socialtopia. But, they can’t regulate other countries into a worker’s paradise. So, traditionally, the socialist/communist goes hard core isolationist/self-sustaining commutopia retard, and the whole place turns into a basket case.

    After the big flops of the 20th century, socialists can’t really go full-on isolationist retard, so they go protectionist “Buy American!” retard. See: Bernie Sanders.

    1. Bernie Sanders and his ilk are detestable human beings. As pointed out, they’re part of an ideology that is vulnerable and willing to murder to instill their ideals. For the elusive utopian dream of the greater good.

      But here’s the thing. I don’t think they’re humanist. Not in the way I view it. They *speak* in compassionate tongue but when you corner them you disturbingly discover they have a shallow and utterly banal – if not cynical – view on humanity.

      Ever date a socialist in University? Ever have conversations with them in school? Whenever you personalize their grand schemes it was met with a distant blank stare. They never, ever considered the (consequences intended or otherwise) of their ideas and actions. Ever. Because they don’t give a shit about you and me. All they see is ‘We’.

      And ‘we’ is what makes them utterly dangerous and susceptible to nonsense like nationalism and collectivism.

      As for Sanders and his infantile and juvenile views on economics (suck on this ice-cream Bernie), he rails against youth unemployment (as if it’s a cornerstone of capitalist enterprise) but yet pushes to unionize them and increase the minimum wage further depressing them.

      Fuck this asshole and people like him.

  24. Google pay 97$ per hour my last pay check was $8500 working 1o hours a week online. My younger brother friend has been averaging 12k for months now and he works about 22 hours a week. I cant believe how easy it was once I tried it out.
    This is wha- I do…… ?????? http://www.Money-Hours.com

    1. Me good worker. Me work for Google, Google pay 97 per hour. Me happy.

    2. An hourly salary of $97 works out to an annual income of almost $200k. Bernie Sanders hates you you stinking one percenter!

  25. So what if job hours are cut or people lose their jobs, we have gov’t to pick up the slack. We need to do whatever we can to keep the slaves reliant on the plantation of big gov’t while those making the big bucks will continue to make the big bucks and support the likes of our cockroach politicians.

    1. Government is the currency monopolist and price-setter. In a monetized economy the government sector unavoidably sits at the heart.

  26. The Wall Street Journal’s analysis is somewhat incomplete. The $15 trillion in health spending is simply a transfer of existing flows; it isn’t additional spending. Sander’s proposals amount to between $300-$400 billion in additional spending annually.

    As for protectionism we would be better served by stimulating demand lost to the trade deficit than attempting to force a balance. If the Chinese wish to continue poisoning and blowing themselves up so they can make things and hand them over to us, so much the better.

  27. Why does Cato hire foreigners? Bernie ought to call a meeting with the board and get them to hire some fat ugly American chick.

  28. You are right. In fact, let’s stop manufacturing everything. And then let’s also start out-sourcing white collar jobs. Jobs like call centers and accounting services. And then all Cxx jobs as well. And then let’s out-source all teachers by using only online teaching. And why stop there?

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