The Populist Revolution: Bernie and Beyond

The world is undergoing a populist revival. From the revolt against austerity led by the Syriza Party in Greece and the Podemos Party in Spain, to Jeremy Corbyn’s surprise victory as Labour leader in the UK, to Donald Trump’s ascendancy in the Republican polls, to Bernie Sanders’ surprisingly strong challenge to Hillary Clinton – contenders with their fingers on the popular pulse are surging ahead of their establishment rivals.

Today’s populist revolt mimics an earlier one that reached its peak in the US in the 1890s. Then it was all about challenging Wall Street, reclaiming the government’s power to create money, curing rampant deflation with US Notes (Greenbacks) or silver coins (then considered the money of the people), nationalizing the banks, and establishing a central bank that actually responded to the will of the people.

Over a century later, Occupy Wall Street revived the populist challenge, armed this time with the Internet and mass media to spread the word. The Occupy movement shined a spotlight on the corrupt culture of greed unleashed by deregulating Wall Street, widening the yawning gap between the 1% and the 99% and destroying jobs, households and the economy.

Donald Trump’s populist campaign has not focused much on Wall Street; but Bernie Sanders’ has, in spades. Sanders has picked up the baton where Occupy left off, and the disenfranchised Millennials who composed that movement have flocked behind him.

The Failure of Regulation

Sanders’ focus on Wall Street has forced his opponent Hillary Clinton to respond to the challenge. Clinton maintains that Sanders’ proposals sound good but “will never make it in real life.” Her solution is largely to preserve the status quo while imposing more bank regulation.

That approach, however, was already tried with the Dodd-Frank Act, which has not solved the problem although it is currently the longest and most complicated bill ever passed by the US legislature. Dodd-Frank purported to eliminate bailouts, but it did this by replacing them with “bail-ins” – confiscating the funds of bank creditors, including depositors, to keep too-big-to-fail banks afloat. The costs were merely shifted from the people-as-taxpayers to the people-as-creditors.

Worse, the massive tangle of new regulations has hamstrung the smaller community banks that make the majority of loans to small and medium sized businesses, which in turn create most of the jobs. More regulation would simply force more community banks to sell out to their larger competitors, making the too-bigs even bigger.

In any case, regulatory tweaking has proved to be an inadequate response. Banks backed by an army of lobbyists simply get the laws changed, so that what was formerly criminal behavior becomes legal. (See, e.g., CitiGroup’s redrafting of the “push out” rule in December 2015 that completely vitiated the legislative intent.)

What Sanders is proposing, by contrast, is a real financial revolution, a fundamental change in the system itself. His proposals include eliminating Too Big to Fail by breaking up the biggest banks; protecting consumer deposits by reinstating the Glass-Steagall Act (separating investment from depository banking); reviving postal banks as safe depository alternatives; and reforming the Federal Reserve, enlisting it in the service of the people.

Time to Revive the Original Populist Agenda?

Sanders’ proposals are a good start. But critics counter that breaking up the biggest banks would be costly, disruptive and destabilizing; and it would not eliminate Wall Street corruption and mismanagement.

Banks today have usurped the power to create the national money supply. As the Bank of England recently acknowledged, banks create money whenever they make loans. Banks determine who gets the money and on what terms. Reducing the biggest banks to less than $50 billion in assets (the Dodd-Frank limit for “too big to fail”) would not make them more trustworthy stewards of that power and privilege.

How can banking be made to serve the needs of the people and the economy, while preserving the more functional aspects of today’s highly sophisticated global banking system? Perhaps it is time to reconsider the proposals of the early populists. The direct approach to “occupying” the banks is to simply step into their shoes and make them public utilities. Insolvent megabanks can be nationalized – as they were before 2008. (More on that shortly.)

Making banks public utilities can happen on a local level as well. States and cities can establish publicly-owned depository banks on the highly profitable and efficient model of the Bank of North Dakota. Public banks can partner with community banks to direct credit where it is needed locally; and they can reduce the costs of government by recycling bank profits for public use, eliminating outsized Wall Street fees and obviating the need for derivatives to mitigate risk.

At the federal level, not only can postal banks serve as safe depositories and affordable credit alternatives, but the central bank can provide is it just a source of interest-free credit for the nation – as was done, for example, with Canada’s central bank from 1939 to 1974. The U.S. Treasury could also reclaim the power to issue, not just pocket change, but a major portion of the money supply – as was done by the American colonists in the 18th century and by President Abraham Lincoln in the 19th century.

Nationalization: Not As Radical As It Sounds

Radical as it sounds today, nationalizing failed megabanks was actually standard operating procedure before 2008. Nationalization was one of three options open to the FDIC when a bank failed. The other two were (1) closure and liquidation, and (2) merger with a healthy bank. Most failures were resolved using the merger option, but for very large banks, nationalization was sometimes considered the best choice for taxpayers. The leading U.S. example was Continental Illinois, the seventh-largest bank in the country when it failed in 1984. The FDIC wiped out existing shareholders, infused capital, took over bad assets, replaced senior management, and owned the bank for about a decade, running it as a commercial enterprise.

What was a truly radical departure from accepted practice was the unprecedented wave of government bailouts after the 2008 banking crisis. The taxpayers bore the losses, while culpable bank management not only escaped civil and criminal penalties but made off with record bonuses.

In a July 2012 article in The New York Times titled “Wall Street Is Too Big to Regulate,” Gar Alperovitz noted that the five biggest banks—JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo and Goldman Sachs—then had combined assets amounting to more than half the nation’s economy. He wrote:

With high-paid lobbyists contesting every proposed regulation, it is increasingly clear that big banks can never be effectively controlled as private businesses. If an enterprise (or five of them) is so large and so concentrated that competition and regulation are impossible, the most market-friendly step is to nationalize its functions. . . .

Nationalization isn’t as difficult as it sounds. We tend to forget that we did, in fact, nationalize General Motors in 2009; the government still owns a controlling share of its stock. We also essentially nationalized the American International Group, one of the largest insurance companies in the world, and the government still owns roughly 60 percent of its stock.

A more market-friendly term than nationalization is “receivership” – taking over insolvent banks and cleaning them up. But as Dr. Michael Hudson observed in a 2009 article, real nationalization does not mean simply imposing losses on the government and then selling the asset back to the private sector. He wrote:

Real nationalization occurs when governments act in the public interest to take over private property. . . . Nationalizing the banks along these lines would mean that the government would supply the nation’s credit needs. The Treasury would become the source of new money, replacing commercial bank credit. Presumably this credit would be lent out for economically and socially productive purposes, not merely to inflate asset prices while loading down households and business with debt as has occurred under today’s commercial bank lending policies.

A Network of Locally-Controlled Public Banks

“Nationalizing” the banks implies top-down federal control, but this need not be the result. We could have a system of publicly-owned banks that were locally controlled, operating independently to serve the needs of their own communities.

As noted earlier, banks create the money they lend simply by writing it into accounts. Money comes into existence as a debit in the borrower’s account, and it is extinguished when the debt is repaid. This happens at a grassroots level through local banks, creating and destroying money organically according to the demands of the community. Making these banks public institutions would differ from the current system only in that the banks would have a mandate to serve the public interest, and the profits would be returned to the local government for public use.

Although most of the money supply would continue to be created and destroyed locally as loans, there would still be a need for the government-issued currency envisioned by the early populists, to fill gaps in demand as needed to keep supply and demand in balance. This could be achieved with a national dividend issued by the federal Treasury to all citizens, or by “quantitative easing for the people” as envisioned by Jeremy Corbyn, or by quantitative easing targeted at infrastructure.

For decades, private sector banking has been left to its own devices. The private-only banking model has been thoroughly tested, and it has proven to be a disastrous failure. We need a banking system that truly serves the needs of the people, and that objective can best be achieved with banks that are owned and operated by and for the people.


Tagged with: , , ,
52 comments on “The Populist Revolution: Bernie and Beyond
  1. Flopot says:

    “From the revolt against austerity led by the Syriza Party in Greece”

    Stopped reading after that lie :P

  2. Talcott says:

    Stacy and Max

    I am watching your interview with Mr Jones,

    ROFL… guys are awesome, and btw a mere baron pft….

    Certainly a Duke at the very least…… ;)

    Max&Stacy’s shared lol at this moment resonates with my perspective of AJ

  3. Talcott says:

    Check out the Bowie threads

    ! !! !!! !!!!! !!!!!!!

  4. Flopot says:

    Syriza won an election AND a referendum on an anti-austerity platform…and so introduced even more austerity!

    Syriza was a controlled opposition.

  5. Ellen Brown says:

    Syriza failed, but it WAS a revolt. They failed because the ECB cut off liquidity to the Greek banks, mafia-style. What the Greeks need is their own central bank creating their own money supply.

  6. Flopot says:

    It was a betrayal. Syriza never made any serious attempts to stand up to the EU. The Greek people would’ve stood with them — just look at the referendum result. Instead Syriza ramped up the austerity policies.

    It all comes down to whether you believe the likes of Yanis and Tsipris — did they really think they could renegotiate the debt? They had no backup plans for an alternative currency. And no, Yanis’ bizarre plan “leaked” via a conversation with banksters (for goodness sake!) does not count.

    Podemos and the new parties in Spain are also hoping to renegotiate the debt. Same policy as Syriza. So what is the outcome going to be? More likely these parties are more controlled opposition.

  7. Flopot says:

    And Tsipras then booted out the remaining anti-austerity members of Syriza.

    Is “failure” an apt description for such actions?

  8. Flopot says:

    And now you’re touting Bernie Sanders as “anti-establishment”. He is a Zionist and a supporter of all the US wars — he voted against the Iraq war…and yt evoted for its subsequent funding.

    So how can Sanders fund his social policies and keep his anti-bankster promises, whilst at the same time supporting the US wars abroad. The very wars that the Wall Street banks pay for, and the neocons (i.e. the Zionists) plan?


  9. Andy Perry says:

    EB suggests that the post 2008 response was something fundamentally different to what has gone before and this is certainly true. The question is; how was it different?

    Nationalisation is a tried and trusted measure used as a means of reinstating the status quo, if and when an economic situation gets serious enough.

    But the Credit Crunch was different. Because this time the Monetarist financial authorities DID NOT WANT to return to the status quo. They did not want to undo or repair the effects of securitisation and financialisation.

    Instead they wanted to make the production of ‘financial instruments’ a permanent and unassailable part of the economic landscape.

    The purpose of Dodd-Frank is to GUARANTEE the legal position of derivatives within the economy. The purpose of QE was to ‘print’ enough free money to effectively lower the exchange rate between government issued currency and derivatives.

    Decreasing the value of government money through ‘printing’ boosted the relative value of derivatives and made them attractive again. As a direct result of QE, not only have derivatives not gone away, they have mushroomed across the globe.

    This is because the fundamental purpose of the Monetarist central banks is to PRIVATISE the issuance of money through the production of derivatives, in just the same way that the military, the penal system, the education system and anything else they can get their hands on has been privatised.

    This is why nationalisation or controlling large financial institutions will only remain a pipe dream so long as Monetarists are in charge.

    Things are this way for a reason. They are this way because the Monetarists like it.

    It is the Democratisation of Money

  10. Flopot says:

    *yet voted

  11. ronron says:

    @Flopot. Ellen has a point and the Greeks will fight another day. that was a battle in a war. i have no doubt the new boys were shown a picture of moe green.

  12. Flopot says:


    Don’t get me wrong — I am a supporter of your views, I just think you’re being naive about the controlled opposition in our captured democracies. I was the same way — so that’s why I’m being such an a** about it :P

  13. Flopot says:


    So that makes it a betrayal.

    Anyway, seems bleedin’ obvious to me. When Bernie and Podemos “fail”; will the same writers turn up and lament the “failure”.

  14. ronron says:

    yes Flopot. you also have a point. there is no political solution to the problems we face.

  15. Flopot says:


    Jeebus crisis! You’re being infuriatingly reasonable.

    Like the man once said, we’ll see.

  16. Marco Saba says:

    The “truth bomb” awaiting explosion: cash flaw accounting

    One has to understand that money loaned out is not coming from “speculators” clients of the banks, but out from nothing. I.e. In their lending, banks create credit ‘ex nihilo’, and new money ‘ab initio’ with cash made ‘out of thin air’, because the loan amount is added onto the borrower’s account immediately after signing a loan contract. The loan is ADDED onto the borrower’s account, not TRANSFERRED from any existing cash account ! And this is the point: when the bankers creates this new money, they don’t write it in existence directly into their cash flow account as a newly created asset, but directly on the borrower account ! So, the banks have always what appears as a NEGATIVE CASH FLOW ACCOUNT, but is not a real loss ! It’s all a make-believe game of mirrors… and the real origin of money in the bank is unaccounted for.

    Further reading: Cash Flow Accounting in Banks— A study of practice, Ásgeir B. Torfason, University of Gothenburg, 2014

    And: Werner, R.A., A lost century in economics: Three theories of banking and the conclusive evidence, International Review of Financial Analysis (2015)

  17. 7th Avenue Aviator says:


    “i have no doubt the new boys were shown a picture of moe green.”

    Or maybe a film of Dealey Plaza from a different angle.


  18. 7th Avenue Aviator says:

    The “grassy knoll” has a wonderful view.


  19. Flopot says:

    Bernie the Bolt…

    “And we all know, no argument, the secretary [former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the leading candidate for the Democratic Presidential nomination] is absolutely right, Assad is a butcher of his own people, man using chemical weapons against his own people. This is beyond disgusting”

    He’s spreading the same Zionist bulls**t as all the others.

  20. MrJones says:


    EB article was about privatizing banks, banks for the people. Not about the Greeks and Syriza. No need to go off the deep end. lol.

    And I would agree with you about Bernie. But what other options does an American voter have? Not voting at all? I liked Trump for the FU factor but that is staring to wear thin has more and more insiders endorse him. My two cents on this is the majority of the people are oblivious to their surroundings. They can’t see beyond the end of their noses. The rest of us see that street protesting is no longer effective and other forms of civil disobedience will get you shot by the police or thrown in jail. Just who do we trust, turn to or follow? Seems the best/safest option is wait for the collapse, and hopefully there will be a phoenix a rebuilding. Or at least a purge of the vile people who are the cause and enablers. At least we can collect names while waiting.

  21. 7th Avenue Aviator says:

    Well said. That about sums it up.

    Joshua: A strange game. The only winning move is not to play. How about a nice game of chess?


  22. Flopot says:

    “Bernie and beyond” ;)

    Good grief.

  23. Flopot says:


    I sincerely think that Bernie is Obama, but with lots more tiny lies being spouted — think of a Hope and Change presentation but with many more bullet points. Each another lie.

    The guy supports the US Empire; which means he will not take on the Wall Street Banks. He must be a liar by logic and by precedent.

    Best to destroy your vote, at least. Or seek out a genuine third party candidate…which is almost laughable. I agree. We all gotta get on with our local lives whilst the system collapses.

  24. Bev says:

    from Robert Reich at

    The Volcanic Core Fueling the 2016 Election

    This election is about changing the parameters of what’s feasible and ending the choke hold of big money on our political system.

    I’ve known Hillary Clinton since she was 19 years old, and have nothing but respect for her. In my view, she’s the most qualified candidate for president of the political system we now have.

    But Bernie Sanders is the most qualified candidate to create the political system we should have, because he’s leading a political movement for change.

    The upcoming election isn’t about detailed policy proposals. It’s about power – whether those who have it will keep it, or whether average Americans will get some as well.

    A study published in the fall of 2014 by Princeton professor Martin Gilens and Northwestern’s Benjamin Page reveals the scale of the challenge.

    Gilens and Page analyzed 1,799 policy issues in detail, determining the relative influence on them of economic elites, business groups, mass-based interest groups, and average citizens.

    Their conclusion: “The preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically nonsignificant impact upon public policy.”
    Instead, lawmakers respond to the moneyed interests – those with the most lobbying prowess and deepest pockets to bankroll campaigns.

    Which explains a paradox I found a few months ago when I was on book tour in the nation’s heartland: I kept bumping into people who told me they were trying to make up their minds in the upcoming election between Sanders and Trump.

    At first I was dumbfounded. The two are at opposite ends of the political divide.  
But as I talked with these people, I kept hearing the same refrains. They wanted to end “crony capitalism.” They detested “corporate welfare,” such as the Wall Street bailout.

    They wanted to prevent the big banks from extorting us ever again. Close tax loopholes for hedge-fund partners. Stop the drug companies and health insurers from ripping off American consumers. End trade treaties that sell out American workers. Get big money out of politics.

    Somewhere in all this I came to see the volcanic core of what’s fueling this election.

    Either you’re going to be attracted to an authoritarian son-of-a-bitch who promises to make America great again by keeping out people different from you and creating “great” jobs in America, who sounds like he won’t let anything or anybody stand in his way, and who’s so rich he can’t be bought off.

    Or you’ll go for a political activist who tells it like it is, who has lived by his convictions for fifty years, who won’t take a dime of money from big corporations or Wall Street or the very rich, and who is leading a grass-roots “political revolution” to regain control over our democracy and economy.

    In other words, either a dictator who promises to bring power back to the people, or a movement leader who asks us to join together to bring power back to the people.

    You don’t care about the details of proposed policies and programs.

    You just want a system that works for you.

  25. Bev says:

    I love Bernie Sander’s ad.


    Liberals have stopped snickering at Bernie Sanders’ (hugely popular) campaign
    Liberals No Longer Amused by Bernie Sanders’ Presidential Campaign

    In comments:

    Sanders’s magnificent ‘America’ campaign ad

    By Brent Budowsky, columnist, The Hill

    The new television ad that was released by Sen. Bernie Sanders’s (I-Vt.) campaign, based on 
Simon and Garfunkel’s song “America,” is the most brilliant and appropriate campaign ad of the year so far, and may be the most important campaign ad since President Reagan’s “Morning in America” ad.

    The ad perfectly captures the vision and spirit of the Sanders campaign and the mood of an America today that is the stuff of diverse people yearning to come together for common dreams and aspirations, at a time when many voters are hurting and hungering for a better life. The ad 
brings together music and video behind the Sanders message in a way that is fun to watch and memorable in substance and tone.In his ad, Sanders, like Simon and Garfunkel in their song, paints a portrait of a people seeking a better and nobler and more hopeful nation. There is a poetry and romance to the ad, as there is a poetry and romance to politics at its best —



    N.H. Poll Indicates Sanders Will Win Democratic Nomination, then the Presidency

    In comments: Bernie Sanders supporters need to record the votes at the end of the day to compare with what is officially reported later. Then…. Always demand real evidence of open hand counts or hand counted paper ballots posted in precinct on caucus, 
primary and general election night.
Another Presidential Election Year Featuring Unverified and/or Unverifiable E-Voting GUEST: Election integrity watchdog Bev Harris of

    (Bev) Harris tells me (Brad Friedman), describing some of the ways election integrity advocates can try to force the issue a bit. Among her suggestions: “You can go [to the polling place at closing time] and snap a picture of what those [computer tabulated] results are with your cell phone and compare it with, at least, what they report” later on.

In comments: Microsoft (rather their open back doors to NSA, CIA) wants a dominating say in Iowa with the approval of both the Democratic and Republican parties?
Iowa caucuses go high-tech


But now both parties will use a Microsoft smartphone or tablet app to report the results from each precinct caucus back to the state party on election night.

  26. Flopot says:


    Bernie is a liar like all the rest. How can he fulfill his promises yet still support the US war machine abroad? How can he be pro-US and pro-Israel at the same time? That’s impossible. He will continue to divert US resources to fighting Israel’s wars.

  27. Bev says:

    Oh, thank goodness, Bernie.

    Bernie Sanders campaign questions Microsoft apps made for Iowa Caucuses
    By Colin Lecher on January 28, 2016

    As the Iowa Caucuses approach, Microsoft has partnered with the Republican and Democratic parties in the state to create apps for tabulating results. But the Bernie Sanders campaign is questioning why, exactly, the company is involved at all.

    “You’d have to ask yourself why they’d want to give something like that away for free,” Pete D’Alessandro, who’s heading Sanders’ Iowa campaign, said in an interview with MSNBC.

    D’Alessandro said the campaign, which has often criticized corporate influence in elections, will be using its own reporting system, as the Clinton campaign has, to double-check the results. He clarified that the issue was not with the Iowa Democratic Party as a whole, but with Microsoft’s involvement specifically. MSNBC also reported that other Sanders aides have raised concerns about Microsoft employees donating hundreds of thousands of dollars to Clinton over the years.

    A spokesperson for the Iowa Democratic Party told The Verge that the app has been under development for more than a year. “Microsoft and their app partner, InterKnowlogy, are global leaders in the technology industry, and we completely trust the integrity of their staff and the app,”…

    (my note: Just like the Democratic leadership trust convicted criminal lobbyist Jack Abramoff’s HAVA putting those right wing evidence stripping e-voting, e-scanning, e-tabulating machines everywhere through abuse and blackmail, see comments via: )

    …the spokesperson said in a statement. “The app will help make caucus reporting more efficient, accurate and secure, and we look forward to seeing it in action on caucus night.”

    Microsoft, for its part, is disputing that it had any ulterior motive in creating the apps.

    (my note: sure, sure. Wonderful of Bernie to go after this.)

    Another good idea from Lynn Landes to Mark Crispin Miller to all Independent Voters in All States:

    INDEPENDENT Bernie voters need to change their registration (to the Democratic Party), if they want to vote in PA primary (and others)

  28. Flopot says:

    Ah well, enjoy the hopium folks. I’m wasting my time battling the Bernie-bots. Enjoy your Zionist nirvana :P

  29. Flopot says:

    I’ll point out the paradox of Bernie one last time — he cannot support both the United States and Israel. It is as simple as that. The latter means war and self-destruction.

    Good luck, Bernie-bots.

  30. Bev says:

    @ Flopot

    Bernie has been consistent for 50 years for the working class and middle class, for all people of all backgrounds to increase education and lessen violence at home and internationally. That makes him the opposite of liar.

    Bernie Sanders
    On the Issues

    The American people must make a fundamental decision. Do we continue the 40-year decline of our middle class and the growing gap between the very rich and everyone else, or do we fight for a progressive economic agenda that creates jobs, raises wages, protects the environment and provides health care for all? Are we prepared to take on the enormous economic and political power of the billionaire class, or do we continue to slide into economic and political oligarchy? These are the most important questions of our time, and how we answer them will determine the future of our country.

    Income and Wealth Inequality
    It’s Time to Make College Tuition Free and Debt Free
    Getting Big Money Out of Politics and Restoring Democracy
    Creating Decent Paying Jobs
    A Living Wage
    Combating Climate Change to Save the Planet
    A Fair and Humane Immigration Policy
    Racial Justice
    Fighting for Women’s Rights
    Fighting for LGBT Equality
    Caring for Our Veterans
    Medicare For All
    Fighting for Disability Rights
    Strengthen and Expand Social Security
    Fighting to Lower Prescription Drug Prices
    Improving the Rural Economy
    Reforming Wall Street
    Real Family Values
    War and Peace
    War Should Be the Last Option: Why I Support the Iran Deal
    Real Tax Reform Policies that Sen. Sanders Has Proposed
    How Bernie pays for his proposals

    Israel and Palestine

    The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been one of the world’s most difficult and intractable disputes for more than sixty years. Moreover, the failure to resolve that crisis has helped fuel other conflicts in the region. Senator Sanders has long supported a two-state solution that recognizes Israel’s right to exist in peace and security, and the Palestinians right to a homeland in which they control their political and economic future.

    The most recent violence in Gaza represented a particularly ugly and violent time in the dispute. Senator Sanders strongly condemned indiscriminate rocket fire by Hamas into Israeli territory, and Hamas’ use of civilian neighborhoods to launch those attacks. However, while recognizing that Israel has the right to defend itself, he also strongly condemned Israeli attacks on Gaza as disproportionate and the widespread killing of civilians as completely unacceptable.

    The U.S. must play a leading role in creating a two-state solution, which will require significant compromises from both sides. The Palestinians must unequivocally recognize Israel’s right to exist, and hold accountable those who have committed terrorist acts. The Israelis must end the blockade of Gaza, and cease developing settlements on Palestinian land. Both sides must negotiate in good faith regarding all other outstanding issues that stand in the way of a durable and lasting peace in the region. In the meantime, strict adherence, by all sides, to the tenets of international humanitarian law is necessary in order to avoid escalating the conflict yet again.

  31. Flopot says:


    Israel will never agree to a two-state solution, that’s why Israel loves the “peace process” and wants it to continue until the last Palestinian house it bulldozed.

    You seem to think there is an equal conflict between Hamas and Israel? That is laughable. Nevermind that Israel helped create Hamas and probably sets up those rocket attacks as an excuse to bomb Gaza.

    Bernie Sanders supports Israel’s policies. He will not abandon Israel and he will continue to support ALL of the wars that the US fights on behalf of Israel.

    You are merely propagating Bernie’s more detailed lists of lies. Hope and Change will no longer suffice to fool the people; so we need a list of lies now.

    Seriously, it is either the US or Israel. You cannot support both anymore. And Bernie is a complete Zionist, unfortunately.

  32. Bev says:

    Hopeium was Obama who did not have the progressive background chops to back up his words. And so when he did not deliver, it was very off putting to people who were struggling for their homes, jobs and families.

    Bernie has the historical, consistent background of effective law creation to back up his words of helping everyone. That is why he has been given so little media coverage: he is not one of them. So, his message is resonating in a way that surprises the msm because it happened without them.

    Bernie Gets It Done: Sanders’ Record of Pushing Through Major Reforms Will Surprise You
    What kind of experience does Bernie Sanders have? Let’s take a look.
    By Zaid Jilani / AlterNet

    “I’m a progressive, but I’m a progressive who likes to get things done,” Hillary Clinton said at the first Democratic debate, in response to a question from moderator Anderson Cooper about whether she defines herself as a moderate or a progressive.

    The implication was that progressive Bernie Sanders is too far to the left to accomplish anything—all of his ideas are pie-in-the-sky. You have to be able to find the bipartisan, “warm, purple space” as Clinton said earlier this year, to get anything done. Slate’s Jamelle Bouie was super-impressed by this rationale, saying Clinton has “skilled use of bureaucratic power.”

    The problem with this narrative is that it is completely false. Not only has Sanders gotten a lot more things done than Clinton did in her own short legislative career, he’s actually one of the most effective members of Congress, passing bills, both big and small, that have reshaped American policy on key issues like poverty, the environment and health care.

    The Amendment King

    Yet, as difficult as it may be to believe, a socialist from Vermont is one of its most accomplished members.

    But Sanders was not content with tilting at windmills. He didn’t want to just take a stand, he wanted to pass legislation that improved the United States of America. He found his vehicle in legislative amendments.

    Amendments in the House of Representatives are often seen as secondary vehicles to legislation that individual members sponsor, but they are an important way to move resources and build bipartisan coalitions to change the direction of the law. Despite the fact that the most right-wing Republicans in a generation controlled the House of Representatives between 1994 and 2006, the member who passed the most amendments during that time was not a right-winger like Bob Barr or John Boehner. The amendment king was, instead, Bernie Sanders.

    His Theory of Change, From Burlington to the White House

    The big question is, can Sanders translate his time as an effective senator into an effective president? After all, a legislative job is different than an executive job.

    But Sanders has a theory of change, in order to be an executive who can pass progressive policy even in the face of a recalcitrant Congress. He frequently talks about a “political revolution” that means vastly increasing voter turnout and participation in political activities so conservative lawmakers and Big Money are unable to overwhelm public opinion. During the Democratic debate, this line had its doubters, from former Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA) to a skeptical Anderson Cooper.

    Sanders is probably not so unsure of himself. After all, he’s done it before. When Sanders was mayor of Burlington, Vermont, one of his big accomplishments was to increase civic life in the city. During the course of his terms, voter turnout doubled. In his eight years as mayor, he rejuvenated a city that was considered by many to be dying, laying out progressive policies that cities around the country later adopted, and he did all this without particularly alienating Republicans. As one former GOP Alderman noted, he implemented ideas from the Republican party that he felt were not particularly harmful to working people, such as more efficient accounting practices.

    It’s easy for the establishment media and politicians to make the assumption that Bernie Sanders is not an effective lawmaker or executive. He has strong convictions and he stands by them, and we’re often told that makes one a gadfly—someone who is out to make a point rather than make an actual change. But with Sanders we have the fusion of strong principles and the ability to forge odd bedfellow coalitions that accomplish historic things, like the audit of the Federal Reserve or the rejuvenation of Burlington that has served as a model for cities around the country. “Don’t underestimate me,” Sanders said at the beginning of the race, words that anyone who knows his political and policy history take to heart.

  33. Flopot says:

    As long as Bernie continues to support Israel, he will not be able to deliver his social policies at home. He must continue to back the military-industrial-financial-congressional-intellgience complex.

  34. Bev says:

    @ Flopot
    Maybe this will make you feel better, Flopot.

    Will Bernie Sanders Be the First Jewish President?
    Posted on January 28, 2016 by WashingtonsBlog

    Bernie Sanders may be our next president.

    But did you know that he would be our first Jewish president?

    Huffington Post noted last year:

    You may not be aware of it, but Bernie Sanders is Jewish.

    Granted, Sanders is not very religious. As the Washington Post reports:

    Growing up, Bernie Sanders followed the path of many young American Jews. He went to Hebrew school, was bar mitzvahed and traveled to Israel to work on a kibbutz.

    But as an adult, Sanders drifted away from Jewish customs. And as his bid for the White House gains momentum, he has the chance to make history. Not just as the first Jewish president — but as one of the few modern presidents to present himself as not religious.

    “I am not actively involved with organized religion,” Sanders said in a recent interview.

    Sanders said he believes in God, though not necessarily in a traditional manner.

    “I think everyone believes in God in their own ways,” he said. “To me, it means that all of us are connected, all of life is connected, and that we are all tied together.”

    Sanders’s religious views, which he has rarely discussed, set him apart from the norm in modern American politics, in which voters have come to expect candidates from both parties to hold traditional views about God and to speak about their faith journeys.


    And what I believe in, and what my spirituality is about, is that we’re all in this together.


    I am motivated by a vision which exists in all of the great religions — in Christianity, in Judaism, in Islam, Buddhism and other religions — and which is so beautifully and clearly stated in Matthew 7:12,” Sanders said. “And it states: ‘So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the law and the prophets.’ ”

    So Sanders could be America’s first Jewish president … and the first president to stress a more universal view of faith.

    Seems to me that right wing fundamentalists christians are more pro Israel-can-do-no-wrong than Bernie.

    Bernie’s help of all people now, and long term help for generations with his work on climate change, renewables, etc. seems to make good on one of the best ideas of Judaism:
    Tikkun olam (Hebrew: תיקון עולם or תקון עולם‎) (literally, “repair of the world”, alternatively,”construction for eternity”)

    Support and Protect Bernie.

  35. Flopot says:

    So go ahead and “get Berned”. I’ll see you back here one year into his Presidency: it will be interesting how you defend Bernie’s first “humanitarian” war…fought on behalf of Israel and the oligarchs.

  36. Flopot says:


    There is nothing moral in supporting genocidal wars abroad and saying you’ll invest at home; nevermind the impossible contradictions in such a manifesto.

    If it makes you feel better, I will support Bernie when he promises to close the US bases and stops his country fighting Israel’s wars in the middle east. Otherwise he will not get anything done.

  37. Bev says:

    @ flopot
    I put “Protect Bernie” because media, political “experts” are so against him that I do worry, but, that should reassure you that he is not a captive of the current system. Everyone Protect Bernie.

  38. Flopot says:


    I originally thought Obama would be shot :D

    You’re falling for the hopium again; like we all did with Obama.

    It is a simple heuristic — if they support Israel, they don’t support the United States.

  39. Flopot says:

    But I hate myself for being so utterly sceptical about the whole kabuki and if you’re a genuine believer in Bernie then I hope you’re not disappointed.

    IMO he’s a liar. Logic and precedent make that clear to me. That’s my opinion on the matter.

  40. Flopot says:

    PS And that goes for all the candidates from both main parties. All liars. Otherwise they wouldn’t be members of those parties :D

  41. 7th Avenue Aviator says:


    Agreed. At this point; “what difference does it make”.

    At the present time, if I could pick any candidate (alive or dead) to vote for that would be in the running:

    George Carlin hands down.


  42. Flopot says:


    Aye; I’ll just look up once in a while from what I’m doing and roll my eyes at the bollocks. Then I’ll get on with what I’m doing. No point on jumping on every potential Bernie-bot. It is a waste of my angry energy…far more creative things to be getting on with.

    Smedley Butler for President ;)

  43. 7th Avenue Aviator says:

    There ya go. Now that’s the ol’ Flopot we all love and admire.


  44. Vonda Bra says:

    @ Flopot

    Yep Man! You said it all!!! :-)

  45. Flopot says:


    I got berned too often on this site. Makes you think. Lol. Thanks….I think ;)

  46. 7th Avenue Aviator says:


    There should be a requirement for all potential candidates to answer one question in order to participate in the national presidential debates:

    Male candidates: Boxers or Briefs?

    Female candidates: Mini or Maxi?


  47. 7th Avenue Aviator says:

    Under penalty of perjury, an affidavit signed under oath with 3 witnesses present and notarized by a Notary Public.


  48. Flopot says:


    I’m afraid all potential candidates seems to have internalized a positive answer to the following question, “do you support Israel?”. It’s Kabuki Grande and I was wasting my time fighting bernie-bots.

  49. 7th Avenue Aviator says:

    Being a Boxer man myself (the boys gotta have room to move), in today’s PC world, does this mean I’m being labeled a “boxaphobic” or maybe a “boxitarian” because I believe in the non aggression principle?


  50. Flopot says:


    There’s only one label you need to avoid mate ;)

  51. 7th Avenue Aviator says:

    OK I get it. “No artificial sweeteners”.

    Organic 2016!


  52. 7th Avenue Aviator says:

    Sorry the tag on the back.