Socialism works until you run out of other people’s money. This is a famous quote that was attributed to the former Prime Minister of Britain during the final decade of the Cold War, and during the rise of socialism in what would become the European Union. And since the 1980’s when capitalism flourished in its final decade of free markets, growth has been measured not by productivity, but by how much administrations around the world could increase their money supplies and national debts.
And while many Republican Presidents, including the well respected conservative Ronald Reagan, have used borrowing to facilitate their goals and agendas, it has been the current President, and the front runner from the Democratic Party for the 2016 election, that have placed any semblance of fiscal responsibility in the distant past, and could potentially be two back to back Presidents who would double the national debt during their times in office.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, whose liberal call to action has propelled his long-shot presidential campaign, is proposing an array of new programs that would amount to the largest peacetime expansion of government in modern American history.
In all, he backs at least $18 trillion in new spending over a decade, according to a tally by The Wall Street Journal, a sum that alarms conservatives and gives even many Democrats pause. Mr. Sanders sees the money as going to essential government services at a time of increasing strain on the middle class.
His agenda includes an estimated $15 trillion for a government-run health-care program that covers every American, plus large sums to rebuild roads and bridges, expand Social Security and make tuition free at public colleges.
To pay for it, Mr. Sanders, a Vermont independent running for the Democratic nomination, has so far detailed tax increases that could bring in as much as $6.5 trillion over 10 years, according to his staff. - Wall Street Journal
Graphic courtesy of Wall Street Journal
When Barack Obama took office the total national debt was at $10.6 trillion. And a little over six years into his tenure the debt now sits at nearly $18.1 trillion. This is a 71% increase for a single administration that has 1.5 years remaining before leaving office.
Sadly for candidate Sanders, his failure to understand that throwing money at a problem has never in the history of mankind ever resolved the root causes of that problem, especially when it involves human will and fortitude. Ever since the creation of the Department of Education in 1979, the amount of money dedicated to schooling has increased by more than 1000%, but aptitude and literacy has fallen to the point where United States students rank in the lower 30 of all industrialized countries. And when it comes to healthcare, the expansion of medicare coupled with de-regulation of insurance companies has skyrocketed costs to where benefits provided at the Federal level alone exceed $1 trillion per year.
And Sanders wants to more than double the national debt to prove Einstein’s theory of insanity.
Socialists can never see beyond their noses when it comes to creating programs that are intended to help the poor, while also never taking responsibility for when these programs bankrupt a nation, or make life worse for those the ‘ideal’ was intended to aid. And for all the money borrowed during the Obama administration that went to items that can’t even be quantified on a balance sheet, doubling down with the leading Democratic candidate for President in 2016 will turn all of America into the next Detroit or Chicago.
Kenneth Schortgen Jr is a writer for Secretsofthefed.com, Examiner.com, Roguemoney.net, and To the Death Media, and hosts the popular web blog, The Daily Economist. Ken can also be heard Wednesday afternoons giving an weekly economic report on the Angel Clark radio show.