Bernie Sanders Is Proudly Defending His Democratic Socialism From Ignorant Attacks

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Sen. Bernie Sanders isn’t running away from his beliefs. In fact, he is challenging Americans to admit to themselves that they love their Democratic Socialism.

Video:

Transcript via This Week:

STEPHANOPOULOS: You are asking for a lot of shakeup. Is it really possible for someone who calls himself a socialist to be elected president of the United States?

SANDERS: Well, so long as we know what democratic socialism is. And if we know that in countries, in Scandinavia, like Denmark, Norway, Sweden, they are very democratic countries, obviously. The voter turnout is a lot higher than it is in the United States. In those countries, health care is the right of all people. And in those countries, college education, graduate school is free. In those countries, retirement benefits, childcare are stronger than in the United States of America. And in those countries, by and large, government works for ordinary people and the middle class, rather than, as is the case right now in our country, for the billionaire class.

STEPHANOPOULOS: I can hear the Republican attack ad right now. He wants American to look more like Scandinavia.

SANDERS: That’s right. That’s right. And what’s wrong with that? What’s wrong when you have more income and wealth equality? What’s wrong when they have a stronger middle class in many ways than we do, higher minimum wage than we do, and they are stronger on the environment than we do? Look, the fact of the matter is, we do a lot in our country, which is good, but we can learn from other countries. We have, George, the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major country on earth, at the same time as we are seeing a proliferation of millionaires and billionaires. Frankly, I don’t think that is sustainable. I don’t think that’s what America is about.

According to the Democratic Socialists Of America, Democratic Socialism does not mean government control of the economy, “Democratic socialists believe that both the economy and society should be run democratically—to meet public needs, not to make profits for a few. To achieve a more just society, many structures of our government and economy must be radically transformed through greater economic and social democracy so that ordinary Americans can participate in the many decisions that affect our lives.”

The problem is that Republicans have defined everything that isn’t trickle-down economics as socialism. Republicans define liberalism as socialism. Republicans think progressivism is socialism when in reality, they have no idea what socialism is.

It is refreshing to see a candidate for office proudly defend his ideology instead of trying to hide or run away from it. Bernie Sanders is not a socialist as Republicans are fond of claiming.

Sanders’s question was legitimate. What’s wrong with the idea of a stronger middle-class and higher minimum wage? What’s wrong with making the super wealthy pay their fair share and reopening the doors of economic opportunity for all? The fact is that most Americans love their socialism. For example. Medicare is a beloved program.

Bernie Sanders isn’t shying away from his beliefs, and he is combating Republican perpetuated ignorance one interview at a time.

36 Replies to “Bernie Sanders Is Proudly Defending His Democratic Socialism From Ignorant Attacks”

  1. From the outside looking in: The US, because it has long been the wealthiest and most powerful of all countries, has never felt the need to self-examine and see its many blemishes, which affect its poorest and powerless. Thank goodness for Bernie Sanders, who is not afraid to really tell it like it is. Any global index — whether it measures healthcare, education, ease of upward mobility, personal happiness etc. — inevitably has the Scandinavian countries at the top. Even my own country tops the US in most categories and ohmygoodness — we have no abortion laws and we do have legal gay marriage!!!!!
    What we DON’T have is incredibly regressive political parties who want to take us back a couple of centuries where there was no such thing as equal pay, women were mere chattels, as were those people of colour, the only religion was the Old Testament version of Christianity, and the entrepreneurs were the ones “truly blessed”.

  2. Sometimes they will call it ‘Fascism,’ sometimes ‘Communism,’ sometimes ‘Regimentation,’ sometimes ‘Socialism.’

    – FDR

  3. What welfare for everyone?

    In the USA, welfare is only for the rich, and to protect the banks, and corporations, because they are “too big to fail”…

    Yes Mr. Bernie!
    we are with you! we need to get up and fight for the rights of the people, since the corporations already own and manage congress and the supreme court

  4. From the inside looking out. When a country’s people get too big for their britches, they use phrases like American exceptionalism. That attitude is also why we get the moniker “ugly American”. The people I’m referring to call themselves patriots while doing and saying unpatriotic things. They go by names like Republican, conservative, Christian or Tea Party. They embarrass themselves and our Country. They have no idea how foolish they look to the rest of the world, nor do they care because “American exceptionalism”. We as a people need to put an end to that type of attitude before we as a country become third world. Where will the exceptionalism be then?

  5. If Bernie plays his cards right, that’s exactly what he should play up; improved diplomatic relations with other developed nations.

    No offense to Iraq, the entire Middle East or Africa, but we’ve been burning bridges left right and center with countries we have historically considered “friendly”.

  6. Damn that Commie Bernie Sanders.

    As an American it is my God given right to spend my children’s lunch money on accessories for my AR15 and to give my welfare checks to the pastor of a Prosperity Gospel mega church.

  7. Your country is a shining example, but remember this, it only takes the human imperfection of greed to bring good government down. When a few bad apples get in the mix, things become ugly, hurtful and just plain wrong. I hope your leaders continue on the path of helping the many and not representing the few.

  8. Actually, I’d settle for America looking like the America from the 1970’s through the 1990’s.

    Unless I was just that naive, seemed to me we were on a path to racial harmony, equality and the pursuit of happiness.

    All of a sudden, conservative policies (which we all know what the word conservative stands for now) are turning this once great country into something that makes me want to throw up every time I hear someone, or a crowd chant “U.S.A! U.S.A! U.S.A!

    America used to have The Little Engine That Could” spirit and now, all we hear is “No, No, No.” It can’t be done!

    America! You’re not this backwards, stupid or hateful! There’s something wrong here.

    We need a paper trail of everyone coming out of the voting booths.

  9. I can’t say that I have ever had a single disappointment or disagreement with Senator Sanders’ voting record and political philosophy.

  10. Two things trickle down: rain and pi$$, and there hasn’t been a cloud in the sky for months. The middle and lower class needs an umbrella!

  11. Pretty good interview performance. I don’t predict Sanders being elected president in 2016, but he might be able to blown open the parameters of political discourse at the federal level and this alone would be a very good thing.

  12. Yvonne, we WERE on a path to prosperity, racial equality, middle class growth, then we elected Teflon Ron, Patron Saint of the 1%, and he handed us all over to them. He busted up unions, took taxes off the rich (thereby taking away their incentive to invest any of their earnings back in their company, or their employees) and started the great migration of jobs off-shore.

  13. Very strong interview performance by Sanders here. Many of Americans just got a great first impression of him.

  14. Senator Bernie Sanders from the “Socialist Republic of Burlington Vermont,” puts the social back into socialism and democracy back into our government of “we, the people” and into the Democratic Party. Why not elect your own boss? Why not have workers have a say in their business or organization they work for? Why not have “checks and balances” on unfettered capitalism? Why not put a “check and balance” the out of control, reckless greed of capitalists? How much profit is enough? How can companies like GE and the 1% get away with not paying any Federal income tax, be proud of it and want a rebate and more tax breaks? Who do they expect to protect them, pay for the airports for their private jets to take off and land on, and highways to taken them their in their fancy cars and stretch limos? The unregulated “invisible hand of the free market” has never protected our environment, our work places, our forests, national parks, our civil rights, First Amendment Rights,&union rights.

  15. Where do I sign on to campaign? I have followed this man’s politics for several years- he has it down. I have three jobs, children, am trying to finish my PhD and COMPLETELY agree with his sensible ideas.

  16. Contrary to what national media may think, I am liking the possibility of Bernie becoming the Democratic nominee for president! It may be a long shot but I think he is what is needed for this country at this time in history!

  17. I was born in another country, one in which Social Democracy is the normal order of things. EVERYONE votes there, and people have a shot at making it through hard work and determination. Business is regulated, banks are regulated, and people pay their taxes – corporations included. There is free medical care, heavily subsidized tertiary education, and free if you cannot afford to contribute. Race problems are minimal, it take over two years to train a police officer, and guns are not an issue. Unions are strong, and numerous cheating slob go-zillionaires have had their shiny butts thrown into prison. People are not afraid of their police, and still advise their kids if they get lost, to go look for a policeman.

    Here? You CANNOT trust 99.9% of politicians. You know they’re lying when they open their mouths to speak for the most part. You have to be extremely wary of police, and police militarization. We have too many security agencies. And the America we knew has vanished. GO BERNI…

  18. What the GOP doesn’t want you to realize is that Democratic Socialism is most of the better parts of our country already. They like labeling something and making it out to be bad for the people of America. If you don’t want any socialistic programs then we need to get rid of the Postal Dept., Fire Departments, Police Departments, Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare, Department of Defense, Health Care Insurance, and all other types of insurance. Do you really want to buy into the GOP’s slanted, dishonest definition of Socialism and get rid of all those programs? Not me!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. Bernie Sanders is the only politician I could vote for without reservation. I agree with him most of the time.

  20. We’re going to have to do a massive education campaign to counter years of blatant lies by the ruling elites and their megaphone at Fox Propaganda. But it can be done.

  21. The problem is, Republicans are also socialist. Comparing Dems. to Reps. will never convince me.

    The problem is not that we need more socialism, the problem is that we need to move back to what made our country great.

    A Democratic Republic with a small federal government with very little power and no income taxes. (yes, I said no income tax).

  22. He’s the man for President. I like his ideas. If he wants to disconnect the USA from NAFTA and the W.T.O. I’m definitely for him. The only people benefiting from trade with Red China, and Vietnam (both non-democratic police states) are a handful of billionaires who don’t even necessarily live in the USA. Hopefully President Sanders would reverse the damage Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and two Bushes did to our middle class by demanding China play fair trade rules or we are out, and very large tariffs will be enacted upon Red Chinese made products imported to our country. In addition very large taxes would be enacted against corporations attempting to move overseas, especially when they move to non-democratic police states such as China and Vietnam. Go Bernie!

  23. Your first two paragraphs are exactly right. When I was in college bands back in the late 80’s there was real unity and the groups were very diverse. We all were against injustice together.

    But it was not republicans or conservatives or whatever that destroyed this. It was SJW’s.

    Who divided us at every turn?

    #YesAllWhitePeople and Salon.com, Huffington Post, etc. said that white liberals were racist. They drove a wedge where there was none. Same with gays vs trans, feminists vs feminists, etc.

    The Millennials came into social justice movements and made them a joke. Fake rape and racial hoaxes and the odd love of censorship. Nearly everything they touched turned to shit. And I guarantee you that these entitled brats will turn HARD right once they start paying taxes and have families and such. Social Justice is a fashion accessory like a neck beard or clunky glasses. When those fads wear off (very very soon)they will move on to something else they can make uncool.

  24. Clunky glasses have been a fashion accessory since Elvis Costello first put them on. Who says they’re going away any time soon? (And who says that sort of thing doesn’t have wider implications?)

  25. That’s the real problem with the Reagan/Goldwater platform: The Republicans now have a vested interest in voters distrusting government. So they have no incentive to improve the situation.

  26. I agree Rick. What’s even more amazing is they think if they keep saying “American Exceptionalism” enough times that it will make it true. Well I could say I’m married to Elvis Presley a million times but guess what it’s still not true.

  27. Paul Allen, small government and NO income taxes? Really? How do you expect that roads and bridges are repaired? How do you expect policeman and firefighters are paid? How do you expect the USA to have a military? Those are just a few of the things we need taxes for? Who is going to pay for all that? Maybe we can just go back to the wild west and ride horses and not have any police force or fire departments?

  28. sig heil!!
    We have already tried a vicious oligarchy at our throats many times. Learn some history!

  29. Reading comprehension is obviously not something you can claim with a ridiculous reply comparing Bernie Sanders to Hitler. It’s been a common theme among the RWNJ’s to compare President Obama to Hitler yet there’s nobody being rounded up into concentration camps, being tortured, starved and made to work for pennies, if paid at all. Millions of people aren’t dying or being pulled off the street never to be seen or heard of by their families, they aren’t being persecuted by the government for their religious beliefs although a few Christians, who belong to an overwhelming majority in our country, would like you to believe otherwise. While things could always be better in our country, to compare the U.S. with Nazi Germany is despicable and it is making a mockery of the horror the Jewish people faced in the 1930’s and ’40’s. Shame on you!

  30. Let me preface this by saying that I 100% support Bernie. However, this is a terrible article. You start off by praising Senator Sanders for defending his socialist views and then turn around claim he’s not a socialist? That’s bad writing and incorrect. Last I checked Democratic Socialism is still Socialism. It traces it roots back to Bernstein’s Revisionist Socialism of the late 19th century. Just because the economy is not centrally planned by a vanguard party doesn’t mean it’s not Socialism. Socialism seeks to create a free and equal society through the communal production, regulation, and distribution of resources. Democratic Socialism fits this criteria to the tee. So instead of denying that he is a Socialist why not embrace it and use his popularity and candidacy to educate everyday Americans on what socialism really is?

  31. Very well said. And accurate. And I can respect that entirely.

    Unlike nearly every attempt to make a statement here.

    I disagree with you. As I said here long ago I looked into it, seriously studied it decades ago, and it was not for me.

    But kudos to you for your principles and for not hiding from the obvious truth.

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