Great Stories from Bernie Sanders' Book
Bernie Sanders with bird landing on podium
Stories From Bernie Sander's Book
I read Bernie Sander's book called Outsider in the White House. It is Copyright 2015 and it is 346 pages. Maybe you do not have time to read it. Here are the best stories from it.
In 1981, Bernie Sanders won the election as Mayor of Burlington, running as an Independent. He ran against the Democratic five-term mayor of Burlington, Gordon "Gordie" Paquette. The Republicans did not run anyone since the present mayor was good.
Wikipedia says: "The final result came as a shock to the local political establishment, with the maverick Sanders winning by just 10 votes." Of course the vote had to be recounted a few times. He won three more times defeating both Democratic and Republican. He became a congressman in 1990 and held that until he became senator in 2007.
When he was first mayor, he had only 2 out of 13 of the city council on his side. Their strategy was to not let him pass anything to show how ineffective he was as a mayor. So his strategy was to, at the next election, get most of the city council on his side. He failed. But he got enough so they could not pass anything also. So they would let him pass things in exchange for letting them pass things. Politics can be nasty business.
In the introduction of the book it says in 1996 he had such a big win in the House that every county in Vermont voted for him. The newspaper said: "Sanders is the longest-serving Independent ever elected to Congress."
On Friday, December 10, 2010, when he was 69 rears old, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders walked on to the floor of the United States Senate and began talking. It turned out to be a very long speech or filibuster [an action such as a prolonged speech that obstructs progress in a legislative assembly while not technically contravening the required procedures], lasting over eight and a half hours. It hit a nerve. Millions followed the speech online until the traffic crashed the Senate server. It was against a bill that would extend tax breaks to the millionaires and billionaires.
Page 329 of book says:
MSNBC's Rachel Maddow called the speech " super-human display of endurance and strength of conviction against the tax deal."
In case you are concerned about Bernie Sanders old age, he is an Ashkenazi Jew that have a rare gene that enables them to live to a very old age. Ashkenazi Jews are those who originated in Eastern Europe. By contrast, Sephardic Jews are from the areas around the Mediterranean Sea, including Portugal, Spain, the Middle East and Northern Africa.
An example of a Ashkenazi Jew or Ashkenazim is Irving Kahn. He is 105 years old, goes to work everyday and has not skipped a day of work since he can remember. He is the world's oldest stock broker. He is the chairman of a brokerage and money-management firm that manages about $700 million.
Before I get on with the rest of the article, first I want to clear up some confusion. Sanders calls himself a democratic socialist like many of the Scandinavian countries [the North Germanic languages (Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, Icelandic, Faroese) descended from Old Norse like Denmark.] Now this is different than a socialist. Sanders studied other countries to learn how to improve America.
Let us look at one of them like Denmark with Danish people. See the article Here are 9 Reasons Denmark’s Socialist Economy Leaves the US in the Dust. Not only is there free college there but they pay students $900 a month to attend it. See what Wikipedia says about Denmark in the comments.
According to the World Happiness Report that lists 31 countries Denmark is the happiest country while the United States is 17th. Note that President Obama and VP Joe Biden both want the first 2 years of college to be free. Sanders says that graduating college is the same as graduating high school was 50 years ago.
Denmark has one of the highest per-capita incomes in the developed world. They have one of the world’s lowest poverty rates while the US has one of the highest. Denmark is ranked the #1 best country for business while the US is ranked #18. You can go to the article to read the rest of them.
In the beginning, Sanders' friend got him to go to a Liberty Union Party. Its purpose was to find people to run for the House and Senate. People gave their opinions on political issues. Sanders like giving his well thought out opinions and people liked hearing them. So they chose him to run for the U.S. House of Representatives. His gimmick was to ski around Vermont to promote himself. He spent under $1,000 and got 2% of the vote.
Next time he did better. He got 4% of the vote. The game was afoot. He then ran as governor and got 6% of the vote.
Jump to the present. I mentioned that Sanders wants $15 an hour and many thought that was pie in the sky but now California and New York have it as the minimum. Then someone mentioned that it is okay in increments but not all at once like Sanders wants. Does Sanders want that? His own website says under A Living Wage:
Millions of Americans are working for totally inadequate wages. We must ensure that no full-time worker lives in poverty. The current federal minimum wage is starvation pay and must become a living wage. We must increase it to $15 an hour over the next several years.
Now this is my opinion. I like to make it known who's opinion that I am giving. If a billionaire makes $10 billion more how much does it stimulate the economy? It all gets invested. Nothing goes toward buying anything. A billionaire has everything that he wants. He does not say "when I make a billion more then I will buy another house."
Bill Gates has the most expensive house worth $150 million. With a billion dollars, he can buy almost 7 more of them. He is worth around $50 billion. Now if poor people are given $10 billion then it all goes toward buying things that business sells, making the businesses do better. So money does not trickle down. It trickles up.
Sanders thinks that $60 billion is too much money to go into the military defense budget when there is no country that wants to attack us. It is almost half of the total world budget for the military. I listened to the recent Republican debate. Many of them used Ron Paul's line that we do not need to police the world. But they want a huge amount going into defense so the makers of war toys can make billions more and some of that money will go into the pockets of politicians that helped make it possible.
That is how our government works. One hand washes the other. This idiom means that we need other people to get on as cooperation benefits us all.
Half way through the book he is talking about politics around 1991. He is talking about how much money was wasted on the war on Iraq that could have been spent on helping us instead of hurting others. He now says that defeating the dictator Saddam Hussein, opened up that area to create ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham or Islamic State of Iraq and Syria). Bernie Sanders voted against that war and Hillary Clinton voted for that war, but does regret it..
On page 156 of the book, Sanders says:
The Gingrich political strategy that we see on the floor of the House as we head into the election comes down to gay bashing, immigrant bashing, racism, sexism, and attacks on the poor. Nothing new here.
He says that there is no serious debate as why the United States has gone from first in the world in terms of wages and benefits to thirteenth, why CEOs of large corporations earn almost 200 times what their workers earn and why we lag behind almost every major industrialized country on earth in paid vacation time and parental leave.
Now here is a funny part of the book compared to today's events. On page 265 of the book Gloria Steinem is campaigning for Sanders and makes him an honorary women. Recently she endorsed Hillary Clinton as president.
Also Madeleine Albright, who was the first female Secretary of State, endorsed Hillary Clinton and said that there is a special place in hell for women who do not help other women referring to women who do note vote for Clinton. But in contrast the Pope met with Bernie Sanders on the morning of April 15, 2016 and Sanders spoke at the Vatican later that day. This is only my opinion but I think that He is more qualified to speak about hell than Albright.
On page 292 Sanders says:
There is no reason why, in the richest nation in the world, every American should not have a job that sustains a decent living.
What other politician cares about whether you have a job or if you are making a descent living? Hillary Clinton recently said that she and her husband are broke. But a retired president makes $199,700 every year as a pension. Also Bill Clinton gets other perks like free postage for life. I am serious. That is not a joke! Would you like to be broke only making $200,000 a year doing nothing? Yet they feel that making $15.00 an hour is TOO MUCH!
In the preface Sanders says:
There is something profoundly wrong when the top one-tenth of 1 percent owns almost as much as the bottom 90%, and when 99 percent of all new incomes goes to the top 1 percent. There is something profoundly wrong when one family owns more wealth than the bottom 130 million Americans.
Also there is a lot of talk about labels about how America is a capitalistic society and how China is a communist society. But a higher percent of Chinese like the capitalistic society than the Americans. Also the Chinese have billionaires which do not exist in the communist society.
So many have learned that a blend of capitalism and socialism work the best. For example the police, free education, roads, bridges, hospitals, military/defense, public libraries, fire department, garbage collection, FBI, CIA, social security, prisons, public parks, Medicare, Medicaid, Amtrak, White House, and government are part of the ways that socialism has has improved America. See 75 Ways Socialism Has Improved America.
My Hebrew name is Tsadik that means saint or righteous one. I usually write about health. I was a chemist for the U.S. federal government. After that I learned a great deal about health and alternative medicine. So I am not experienced writing about politics.
My mother liked using sayings. Her favorite one was "Truth is stranger than fiction." Her second favorite was "Good things come in small packages." She was 5 foot tall and taught ballet at The Juilliard School of performing arts in NYC when she got pregnant with me. See my article Senator Bernie Sanders For U.S. President 2016.