Friday, November 20, 2015

Progressive Breakfast: Sanders' Socialism Speech: America Is For All Of Us, Not Just Wealthy


Dave Johnson
Sanders’ Socialism Speech: America Is For All Of Us, Not Just Wealthy
Sen. Bernie Sanders billed his talk Thursday at Georgetown University as a speech on “democratic socialism,” but it was immediately clear that what Sanders was really talking about were not the ideologies of a Cold War adversary but deeply American traditions of fairness that have been under attack by ideologues brandishing American flags ... The Populist Majority website tracks public polling on a number of issues. The public polling shows that the things Sanders talked about in his speech are things that people agree with and approve of – or, as Sanders worded it, are “wildly popular.”

Sanders Makes His Case

Sen. Sanders defines and defends democratic socialism. The Atlantic: “…Sanders praised Democratic presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson for wielding the power of the government to create jobs and lift Americans out of poverty … ‘By the way, almost everything [FDR] proposed was called “socialist.”‘ … He went on to warn that the status quo has put the core American ideal of freedom at risk…”
W. Post knocks Rand Paul that Democratic cities have more inequality: “…population size and demographics are more directly linked to income inequality than the party affiliation of a city’s governor or mayor.”

Senate Dems Aim To Protect Refugees

After House passage, Senate Dems vow to filibuster anti-refugee bill. The Hill: “…Senate Democrats believe they can flip the issue by shifting the debate to the roughly 20 million people who come into the country each year through the visa waiver program. They also want to put Republicans on the spot by forcing a vote on a provision to bar people on the terrorist watch list from buying guns … When asked about the prospect of Obama vetoing the legislation, [Sen. Harry] Reid said, ‘Don’t worry, it won’t get passed. Next question?'”
NYT’s Paul Krugman slams Republican refugee hysteria: “…I think it’s … linked to the apocalyptic mind-set that has developed among Republicans during the Obama years … his political foes have warned about imminent catastrophe. Fiscal crisis! Hyperinflation! Economic collapse, brought on by the scourge of health insurance! … it’s only natural that the right would seize on a terrorist attack in France as proof that Mr. Obama has left America undefended and vulnerable.”

Major Insurer Threatens Obamacare

UnitedHealth throws “tantrum” over Obamacare. LAT: “nitedHealth Group, the country’s largest private health insurer, has discovered that sick people tend to go to the doctor … [So] it may quit offering coverage through [Obamacare] by 2017 … ‘UnitedHealth is still making a lot of money, just not as much as they thought,’ [Prof. Gerald] Friedman said. ‘So they need to signal their shareholders that they take this seriously.’ … ‘They’re probably just sending a message,” said Timothy McBride, a healthcare economist … ‘They may be saying that to stay, they want to see higher premiums.'”
WH pushes back. The Hill: “‘Today’s statement by one issuer is not indicative of the Marketplace’s strength and viability,’ spokesman Ben Wakana said in a statement. Others within the healthcare sector shared the administration’s view, chocking up the warning as a natural symptom the industry’s adjustment to the sweeping law.”

Breakfast Sides

Treasury Dept. takes executive action on corporate inversions. The Hill: “…the guidance would limit the ability for a U.S. company to merge with foreign entity and have the combined company based in a third country, limit the ability for a U.S. company to inflate the size of a foreign company in an effort avoid nullifying the inversion for tax purposes, and require the new foreign parent company to be a tax resident of the country where it is created or organized to satisfy the business activities exception…”
Enviros seek to keep fossil fuels “in the ground.” The Hill: “… the biggest fights to come will be squarely rooted in the supply side of the fossil fuel industry … That includes trying to shut down coal mines and crack down on hydraulic fracturing, along with stopping the transportation of fossil fuels in oil trains, pipelines and coal export terminals … Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and other Democrats introduced a bill to stop any future leases for fossil fuel drilling on federal land and water.”
Immigrant advocates rally on one-year anniversary of Obama’s executive action announcement. W. Post: “Immigrant advocacy groups are planning separate rallies Friday outside the White House and the Supreme Court, asking the Obama administration to halt the deportation of most illegal immigrants and calling on the high court to rule in favor of Obama’s stalled proposal to temporarily shield up to 5 million of them from deportation.”

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