February 25, 2016

Why Not to Feel the Bern

Eitan Szteinbaum ‘18

Though liberty is the absolute foundation of the United States, much of modern American society - from gun control to restrictions on abortion rights - runs contrary to the idea of personal freedom. No presidential candidate is more ideologically opposed to liberty than Bernie Sanders, who has captivated both young and old Americans and, according to recent polls, leads in several states. I do not understand why he is doing so well, but I know that just because he succeeds in politics does not mean he understands the importance of freedom in our political process.
A self-described Democratic Socialist, Sanders claims to be an advocate for the unheard and marginalized voices of our nation. He aims to support the disadvantaged by limiting the resources of middle- and upper-class Americans through high income taxes, under the premise of said Democratic Socialism. The term may be appealing, but “democracy” is a meaningless label that is even associated with authoritarian regimes like North Korea (which is officially the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea). Sanders may not be as extreme as North Korea’s oppressive leader Kim Jong Un, but if Sanders is elected, our freedoms here in The Land of the Free will be more restricted than ever.
Vladimir Lenin said, “The goal of socialism is communism.” Sanders prescribes to the socialist, freedom restricting policy that can easily lead to communism. Even if it didn’t, economic freedom, and other freedoms, would be horribly limited. On his campaign website, Sanders hides limiting the American Dream behind attacks on those who have been the most fortunate of us. He wants to punish them by levying even more taxes and restrictions for being successful. As president, he would over double the minimum wage and therefore restrict businesses from hiring more people. All this policy would do is put hardworking people out of a job. As Americans, most of us do not like corporations leaving America, but they should have the freedom to do so. Bernie Sanders would take away this freedom and imprison corporations within America to milk more money out of them to fund his government. All the while still hating on these companies that he could not be funded without. He would also force employers, whether they can afford it or not, to pay employees for multiple types of leave. Again, this would result in businesses closing and more people out of a job. Congratulations Bernie Sanders, you played yourself.

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