A July 2015 Marxist.com/USA feature rhetorically asks "What does Sanders’ campaign reflect and represent? How should revolutionary Marxists approach it?"
On the whole, their main criticism was that his proposals didn’t go full-blown Karl Marx quite rapidly enough.
For example, rather than endorse Sanders' limited plan to merely break up the banks, they wrote, "We would call instead for the nationalization of the entire banking system and their integration into a single bank, which the working class will administer democratically as a public utility."
And whereas Bernie’s call for universal healthcare was "absolutely correct," Marxist USA believes that "the only way to actually achieve this is to nationalize the insurance giants, hospitals, and pharmaceutical and medical technology monopolies . . . "
Likewise, they argued that Bernie’s plan to achieve universal free education will first necessitate public ownership of private colleges, trade schools, and universities, and then linking them with existing public education networks to create a "unified, world-class higher education system."
"Unfortunately," they lamented, "Sanders is not calling for any of this."
Marxist USA lauded Sanders’ calls for a higher minimum wage, more public works, increases in Social Security and "any reforms that would increase the standard of living of the working class." However, any such reforms are only possible "if we make serious inroads against capitalist private ownership of the means of production."
Then, recognizing that "[G]iven the massive public debt, there is no other source to fund all the social and economic programs society requires," it will be necessary to nationalize and integrate major industries into a "democratically-planned economy" to prevent a "crisis-ridden capitalism, and everything that flows from it" from continuing "to drag humanity down."
Accordingly, "[T]o take humanity to the next level, and to unleash the enormous economic and human potential that humanity squanders, we must make the main levers of the economy — the top 500 companies — publicly owned, democratically administered entities."
Marxist USA credited Bernie’s promotion of "Scandinavian-style socialism" and his call for "political revolution," yet doubted that if elected president he would be able to implement programs to "solve the crisis of capitalism."
While charitably crediting the U.S. — sponsored (and economically-enabled) post-World War II Marshal Plan for introducing modern technology and financial support for such Scandinavian reforms as paid parental leave, universal health care, and universal education, Marxist USA also questioned whether these countries are "truly socialist," or rather, are essentially capitalist nations like the U.S.
They grudgingly stated, "On that basis, the Scandinavian capitalist class could afford reforms, but they only gave them as a result of certain factors."
Those factors purportedly included abilities of a highly unionized workforce and their mass political parties: The Labor Party of Norway; Social Democratic Party and Left Party (previously Communist Party) of Sweden; the Social Democrats; and to a lesser degree, the Communist Party of Denmark, to wrest those reforms out of the capitalists [unfortunately they believe] despite leaving the means of production in private ownership.
Not mentioned is that Denmark, one of Western Europe’s most prosperous countries, enjoys one of one of the world’s least government-regulated economies.
Marxist USA also proposes that such reforms came about in response to capitalist fears attributed to social achievements in the USSR.
Although decrying the USSR’s "hideous police state," Marxist USA claimed that its "nationalized planned economy with full employment, universal health care and education, and no inflation put pressure on capitalists everywhere to give some reforms."
Referring to a compromised "bait and switch" political alignment, Marxist USA finds it to be "not surprising that Bernie Sanders found himself moving closer and closer to the camp of the Democrat Party" which has historically been “a party of Southern slaveholders and Northern capitalist political machines."
Nevertheless, they conclude the article with forgiveness that while Sanders was running as a Democrat on a "limited reformist program," they welcomed the renewed interest in socialist ideas his campaign generated that provided US Marxists "with many opportunities to positively explain our program."
They should therefore be delighted and proud of Bernie’s subsequent Marxist advancement in his latest presidential campaign bid.
In addition to nationalizing all major U.S. companies, he would now join with socialist Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. (AOC), and other Green New Deal cohorts to knee-cap America’s hard-earned and globally-enviable energy independence.
Their proposed $16.3 trillion (and counting) plan would not only ban fracking, but also unexplainably replace all hydrocarbon industries that currently provide about 85 percent of all U.S. energy with intermittent and unreliable wind and solar that now account for a piddling 3 percent.
And the real goal?
Quoting AOC’s Green New Deal architect, former chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti during a May 2019 meeting with Democratic Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s climate director Sam Ricketts, "The interesting thing about the Green New Deal is it wasn’t originally a climate thing at all . . . Do you guys think of it as a climate thing? Because we really think of it as a how-do-you-change-the-entire-economy thing."
Karl Marx must be grinning.
Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the graduate program in space architecture. He is the author of several books, including "Cyberwarfare: Targeting America, Our Infrastructure, and Our Future" (2020), "The Weaponization of AI and the Internet: How Global Networks of Infotech Overlords are Expanding Their Control Over Our Lives" (2019), "Reinventing Ourselves: How Technology is Rapidly and Radically Transforming Humanity" (2019), "Thinking Whole: Rejecting Half-Witted Left & Right Brain Limitations" (2018), "Reflections on Oceans and Puddles: One Hundred Reasons to be Enthusiastic, Grateful and Hopeful" (2017), "Cosmic Musings: Contemplating Life Beyond Self" (2016), "Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom" (2015) and "Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax" (2011). He is currently working on a new book with Buzz Aldrin, "Beyond Footprints and Flagpoles." To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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