The only self-proclaimed socialist in the United States Senate, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has flat out stated that he’s prepared to run for the Democratic nomination against Hillary Clinton.

Report from The Nation:

Bernie Sanders says he is “prepared to run for president of the United States.” That’s not a formal announcement. A lot can change between now and 2016, and the populist senator from Vermont bristles at the whole notion of a permanent campaign. But Sanders has begun talking with savvy progressive political strategists, traveling to unexpected locations such as Alabama and entertaining the process questions that this most issue-focused member of the Senate has traditionally avoided.

In some senses, Sanders is the unlikeliest of prospects: an independent who caucuses with the Democrats in the Senate but has never joined the party, a democratic socialist in a country where many politicians fear the label “liberal,” an outspoken critic of the economic, environmental and social status quo who rips “the ruling class” and calls out the Koch brothers by name. Yet, he has served as the mayor of his state’s largest city, beaten a Republican incumbent for the US House, won and held a historically Republican Senate seat and served longer as an independent member of Congress than anyone else. And he says his political instincts tell him America is ready for a “political revolution.”

As witnessed in 2008, Hillary Clinton is vulnerable on some progressive issues where she falls a little more moderate than the base of the Democratic party. Foreign policy is a good example. That being said, can the socialist from Vermont actually force Clinton to run to the left and avoid being out flanked similarly to 2008?

59 COMMENTS

  1. First impression: stalking horse for Elizabeth Warren.

    Second impression: if he can be taken seriously at 72, maybe Jerry Brown has a chance at 75 (and more physically fit).

    Third impression: Is BillyMaloneBillyMalone related to MaryHartmanMaryHartman?

      • BillyBilly:

        Now you’re talkin’!!

        MaryHartmanMaryHartman for USPresidentUSPresident!!

        Seriously, folks, maybe we should take this a step farther. Last time, “AmericansElect” tried to do an online national primary.

        Why not go all the way, and have the candidates of each party show up on X-Factor, American Idol, and America’s Got Talent. Let us vote ’em OFF. That’d be more fun.

        OR, we could skip the pretense and put them all on “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?”

    • Seriously, folks. . .

      If I were Hillary, I’d try to talk Bernie into running from the left and Jerry running from the right, so she could look like the centrist.

  2. More will come out of the woodwork as Nov 2015 gets closer – no-one will ever know what Clinton is because no-one has ever seen the real Clinton or if there even is one.

  3. The Ralph Naders and Bernie Sanders of the world are in their own way as defeating as the radical Republicans. Republicans used to rally ’round and win. The ‘left’ has a myopic or egotistical view and refuses to surrender when it knows it is defeating itself. Think of the lives lost in Iraq that would have never perished had Nader not mangled Florida and let the Supreme Court anoint the light-headed headed Bush.
    And why are there so many Clinton haters. Compare with some of the Obama haters.

    • Beyond the supposed leftist myopia is the suggestion that Gore was entitled to every vote from the left. Blaming Nader is akin to saying voters should never go off the D/R script, no matter how appealing an alternative candidate may be, and/or how horrid the D/R choices are.

      I would expect the right to fall in line. Conservatives value obedience. However, I wouldn’t exactly call that a virtue. Voters need more choices. The D/R duopoly isn’t exactly getting us anywhere.

      • L. Smith: I see the two-party system as two gangs of thugs, fighting for power, and using “issues” to rouse the rabble.

        And so, the left sees Nader as a “spoiler” in 2000, just as the right saw Perot as a “spoiler” in 1992.

        HOWEVER, I disagree with people who self-righteously say they “vote for the candidate, not the party.” That no longer makes sense. Because the candidate doesn’t run things alone.

        If you vote for “southern centrist” Blll Clinton, in comes Janet Reno and Robert Reich. And if you vote for “uniter-not-divider” George Bush, you end up with Dick Cheney and John Ashcroft.

    • In my experience, anger and hatred are a response to fear. If people thought Hillary had no chance of winning, they’d just smile and move on. The wouldn’t care enough to hate.

      • I agree, Goethe. That’s why I scratch my head over conservatives like Sam and oblivious who hate with an unhinged, red-hot passion. What are they afraid of??? Obama has actually been a pretty conservative Democrat and I would expect the same from Hillary. I basically chalk it up to racism and sexism.

        • Godfrey:

          I think you’ll find if you are less dogmatic that you can have a meeting of the minds with Sam. He does have an extreme (let’s say) “dislike” for both Obama and Clinton. But it’s based on what he has read and heard. He has reasons for feeling the way he does.

          By contrast, Surfisher/Gulag/Obvious is a staunch ideologue. He’s the worst kind of hero worshipper (“brown shirt”), who believes only in black-and-white. And there is no reason for the way he feels, except that he seeks to be as extreme as possible.

          For example, I praised Ron Paul, but I disagree with him on at least two issues. First, I feel that if a woman feels she has no alternative to the drastic act of abortion, she–not we–should make that decision–and we should respect her intelligence. As an OB, Paul can only see the other end of her body. Secondly, I don’t like that Ron rails about pork, but is one of the TOP pork deliverers in all of Congress. I think one should “walk the walk.”

          Likewise, I have serious disagreements with Rand. I don’t like that he panders to fundamentalists by suggesting that implies that we’d go to war to protect any Christian–American or NOT–anywhere in the world. Likewise, I don’t like his slavish subservience to Israel.

          Surfisher/Gulag/Obvious refuses to accept that either of his heroes has any faults of any kind–or that he disagrees with either–even though they disagree with EACH OTHER, and S/G/O has exhibited virulent anti-semitism that Rand would certainly condemn, since it would unsettle his fundamentalist base.

          I have disagreed with Sam and I have disagreed with Tess. Both will give you a reasoned response–and reasons for their response–even when they are battling each other, tooth-and-nail.

          I thought when you and I have disagreed, you have not been willing to give even an inch, in any direction–no consideration, much less reconsideration of a point. . .and there is no such thing as “discussion” from Sufisher/Gulag/Obvious–only a self-righteous rant (with no facts cited) ending with a girlish and self-conscious, “LOL”

            • Billy:

              Not if being against it is the foundation of your philosophy.

              It would be the same as if Rick Santorum forced his girlfriend to get an abortion ‘cuz, yeah, it’s wrong, but you know, everybody’s doin’ it!

            • Billy:

              Yep.
              Knee-jerk politician:
              “I don’t think it’s right,
              but I’ll do anything to get elected.”

            • Sam: EXACTLY. Politicians “buy” votes.

              They “buy” votes by either giving away tax money, OR they “buy” a vote by promoting an ideal the voter wants.

              My complaint is about saying they’ll work to end “business as usual,” and then become one of the biggest exploiters of “business as usual.”

              NOW THEN, let me remind you that I am not “condemning” Ron Paul. I will complain about EVERY politician–because nobody’s perfect–and it is a danger to democracy when hero-worshippers think “their guy” is above review.

              This thread began with my complaining about pork-barrel spending, then Billy saying a politician HAS to “bring home the bacon,” and I was objecting to that.

            • Goethe – Both Billy and You are correct. Somehow the “payback” for support should be limited and understood. But what can happen, unless the donation is a strong ideologist, they might go to the other party to “bring home the bacon”. Money, especially bi-directional, is still king.

            • One thing worse than outsourcing jobs is taking money from one nation or community and giving it to another.

            • Billy: TELLme about it. Even when we were at our worst down-and-out, Michigan was still sending more money to Washington than we got back–so that it could be sent to southern states. (You know, the ones that complain the most about the government.)

            • Sam not so bad when an elected Senator bring home the bacon for the vets in his home state but when he votes to send the a big hunk to Egypt by borrowing it from China, he has to go.

            • Billy: I don’t understand why you have focused almost all your hostility toward that one vote (Aid to Egypt, Pakistan, and Libya). It’s not like it was a new idea. We’ve been bribing Egypt to play nice with Israel for three decades, so why the sudden problem with it?

              Personally, I didn’t like that the continuation of the package came up right after the military coup. I was glad to see the overthrow of Mubarek, but this was an elected government. I don’t like seeing elected governments overthrown, especially when it’s only a few months before a new election.

              I’m also not crazy about paying Egypt, when it’s just to help Israel,not us. But, after all, it is just a continuation of that aid. Why are you so upset by it??

            • Kind of like pork barrel spending ? Well it’s one thing to waste the money here but quite another to waste is overseas. Just where I draw the line and RP represents what I think and he did do something about it. Or tried to anyhow. That narrows the field. Ted is big on what we say goes so that narrows it a bit more.

            • Billy: But that’s not answering the question. You keep saying you’re for one guy and not another because of that ONE bill. And it was just a continuation of support. It just doesn’t make sense to me to pick one bill, arbitrarily, and say it is the one yardstick you’ll use to measure by.

              I still don’t understand why you picked that one bill.

              And, again, I think we should have withheld it–because we said we would not support military coups.

              Maybe I can put it another way. Let’s say you’re against the IRS, and funding for the IRS is repeatedly voted. It seems as if what you are saying about Egypt is as if you arbitrarily picked one year and looked at who voted against IRS spending that one year–without considering that the same guys voted FOR it every other year.

              Why did you pick that one bill and make it the only yardstick you’ve been measuring by??

            • I think I stated why I don’t go for Cruz. I’m for everyone until they give me a lock out item. I’ve gone down the list and found a lock out on just about everyone except Rand. Now there are thing I don’t like about him but I can live with said items. Money to Egypt was a lock out. No lock out on Palin or Johnson either

            • Billy:

              I’m asking why that one vote has stuck in your craw,since it’s just a continuation of many such votes. You have brought it up consistently whenever any candidate has been mentioned over the past few months, as if THAT one vote made all the difference.

              Case in point:
              this page is about BERNIE SANDERS, for cryssake. Look at the second entry above. It has become like a fetish.

              Of ALL the things you could pick to say against SANDERS, you ONLY brought up that silly Egypt vote. He was one of 81 senators who voted for it (and half of the rest abstained). Are you saying you can’t imagine any other reason to vote against BERNIE SANDERS??

            • Billy (& Goethe) – I don’t think we should send any $$ to anyone overseas right now till the debt and budget gets reduced somewhat. But I’m pissed about Obama’s budget to decrease pay and benefits to military pers and vets (some lower grades who are already on food stamps) and move it over to unearned entitlement programs. Actually put the young direct reliefs in the military 🙂 🙂 and don’t decrease the military size, because many of them will go on unemployment which leave pay runs out.

            • But that’s an easy fix as all they have to do is roll back a few thousand regulations and business will take off . All the vets can then find jobs

            • Sam:

              If you want to project a world empire (I don’t), you can’t rely only on killing people. You also have to fund the killing of people by others.

              Remember that most of our “aid” comes right back to our arms manufacturers.

            • Goethe – The last thing I want is a world empire and I don’t understand how you extrapolate that from my words. I doubt Switzerland or Israel want to rule the world, they basically want to be left the fk alone. I want us to be as close to isolationists as possible with treaties and protection with only business allies – specifically Japan, S. Korea, Taiwan, and Poland – Europe can build it’s own defense. I want the U.S. to be so militarily strong that no one wants any part of us. If anyone is stupid enough to try anything – fast attack and eliminate.

              You are not a Libertarian if you don’t have a similar philosophy.

              Yes, it is very unfortunate that our “foreign aid” goes to buy arms instead of healing people and helping the poor. All the more reason not to give foreign aid but pay off our bills and deliver “aid” to ourselves – there are truly some very needy citizens who qualify and not just lazy.

              Actually, I would love to see Bernie Sanders run for POTUS as a Independent!!!!

            • Sam:

              It’s about words. Let me rephrase it as “worldwide empire” instead of “world empire.” What I meant was one country trying to tell everyone in the world what to do. The latter is taken to mean one government. Two different things–neither of which I want, either.

              I don’t think you can be a Libertarian and want the US to dominate every other country in the world.

              My point was that if you DO want the US to push everyone around, then you need to use hard power (kill ’em) AND soft power (buy ’em off). And in most cases, the “aid” we give is really just credit to buy our military weapons–not “pork,” like fixing bridges and providing clean water.

            • Goethe – Again I think you misinterpret my words. Four other countries is not the “rest of the world”. I said we should become close to isolationists except for a few countries we share business with and need each other for strategic military defense. Those same countries already share our values. The rest of the world can do what it wants – who cares. If our defensive strength is superior to any other three best powers, then other nations will leave us alone. And in turn we should leave them alone to their own internal fights and ideals. One of our very old flags – “Don’t Tread On Me”

              No foreign aid – if they want to buy guns and ammo, sell it to them, if they want to suffer their poor, that is their choice. The Middle-East has chosen war and most of W. Europe has chosen socialism over defense – so be it.

              I like Palin’s quote on defense: Mr. President, the only thing that stops a bad guy with a nuke is a good guy with a nuke. — Sarah Palin
              I like Carson’s quote on economics: If Greece could print money, they wouldn’t be in trouble either. — Ben Carson

            • Sam: You and I haven’t actually been arguing or disagreeing. We’ve just been expressing opinions on different planes.

              I don’t know what “four countries” you’re talking about, but we have our fingers in every corner of the globe, and when we get our fingers bitten, we act surprised.

              One of the biggest misconceptions we have in this country is that EVERYBODY is either “pro-American,” or “anti-American,” but if you read their press, they are NOT–they are just all “pro-THEM.”

              We have this weird idea that there’s such a thing as “friends” and “enemies” in the world. Xenophobic and self-delusional.

              We began as English, then enemies of England. At that time, France was crucial in our independence, gave us the Statue of Liberty, hated us, then said, “We are ALL Americans now.”

              Over the past short one hundred years, we have been friends with Germany, then enemies, then friends, then enemies, then friends with HALF of Germany/enemies with the rest, then friends with all, and now we spy on their leader’s cell phone.

              There are no “friends,” and there are no “enemies.” There are peoples with their OWN self-interest, and if we don’t eventually understand that, all we’re going to have is “enemies.”

            • Goethe – I agree with what you said!

              The four countries i listed in an earlier comment to you are Japan, S.Korea, Taiwan – Strategically defended and big, big business ties; Poland for Strategic Missile Deployment. Actually Australia / New Zealand / Canada business & strategy could be included.

              As linear time moves forward countries change ideologies and direction then maybe these “friends” change. Western Europe is in a fight for it’s life based on decisions after WWII of who those countries wanted to be. Just like Obama is trying to change us to be like them versus what Conservatives/Libertarians want to be. And he has nine months or 33 months depending on whats happens in Nov 2014.

              My own opine in there needn’t be a hot vs cold / red vs blue / international left vs right / or friend vs enemy. we have a few specific alliances and the rest just breathe the same (N, O2, H and C) and do their own thing and no animosity. Maybe that’s not possible, but we leave them alone to their challenges or the guttural phrase .”fk with the Giant and get the bat up the ass”. and that is why we need the biggest, best, strongest military and defense/offense.

          • @Goethe: “I think you’ll find if you are less dogmatic that you can have a meeting of the minds with Sam. He does have an extreme (let’s say) “dislike” for both Obama and Clinton. But it’s based on what he has read and heard. He has reasons for feeling the way he does.”

            No he doesn’t. His pathological hatred for what are in fact two very moderate mainstream politicians is “going too far” IMHO and his views appear to be informed by indefensible, Faux news style disinformation. https://www.facebook.com/StopTheTeaParty/photos/a.609599295740011.1073741824.502122049821070/753023671397572/?type=1&theater
            Besides, he won’t talk to me. His last post was totally ad hominem. In that regard he’s no better than Oblivious.

            @Goethe: “By contrast, Surfisher/Gulag/Obvious is a staunch ideologue. He’s the worst kind of hero worshipper (“brown shirt”), who believes only in black-and-white. And there is no reason for the way he feels, except that he seeks to be as extreme as possible.”

            I agree. He’s a troll. Responding to him is like barking back at a dog.

            @Goethe: “For example, I praised Ron Paul, but I disagree with him on at least two issues. First, I feel that if a woman feels she has no alternative to the drastic act of abortion, she–not we–should make that decision–and we should respect her intelligence. As an OB, Paul can only see the other end of her body. Secondly, I don’t like that Ron rails about pork, but is one of the TOP pork deliverers in all of Congress. I think one should “walk the walk.””

            Again we agree, and I share Rand Paul’s desire to scale back the money we throw at the Pentagon and his Libertarian desire to stop government meddling in people’s personal decisions. But then he becomes a complete hypocrite when it comes to abortion and marriage equality where he want’s to butt into the most personal decisions possible, sexuality and reproduction. I guess he would lose the religious conservatives if he stuck to his Libertarian values.

            @Goethe: “I have disagreed with Sam and I have disagreed with Tess. Both will give you a reasoned response–and reasons for their response–even when they are battling each other, tooth-and-nail.
            I thought when you and I have disagreed, you have not been willing to give even an inch, in any direction–no consideration, much less reconsideration of a point. . .”

            I don’t generally post comments on issues where my views are ambivalent or still being refined, so I sometimes can appear dogmatic when posting on subjects I’ve thoroughly vetted, but I’m always receptive to fact-based arguments. There’s not a lot of those around, however.

  4. Sam: You read a lot more than I do.

    I’d be curious if you’ve heard of the book, United America, by Wayne Baker.

    http://www.waynebaker.org/

    http://www.readthespirit.com/ourvalues/united-america-core-value-10-critical-patriotism/

    He bemoans the divisiveness in America, so he tried to get down to the basic beliefs that most of us share, such as fairness, freedom, and security.

    I have been describing America as being like a tree–our roots are many and varied, but we come together in a “trunk” of common values–but then our thoughts fly off on branches in all directions.

    It would be nice if we could find that core, and forward those values we share–domestically, as well as internationally.

    • Goethe – actually I believe you read much more than I do – that is one of the reasons I like the threads of this URL / Domain. Most on here are delivering intelligent thoughts, ideals and up to date political discourse that slides historical when we go in-depth. It makes me do research and keep the dementia and Alzheimer down to a minimum 🙂 🙂 . Actually you are much more learned than me. I have a wide experience but for 40 years have been narrowly focused on selling tech to engineers and CEO’s.

      I haven’t read Baker’s book but did read his webpage (per your posting) and his 10 core values he states, that almost all Americans subscribe to. (what you call the “trunk”). I believe his research is probably core financial of earners of maybe $40K/yr to $3M/yr, those outside that 1.5 sigma (not a linear baseline) are so distraught over one or more beliefs that they are being discriminated against and impacts the attitude; not allowing them to accept and feel all of these 10 values.

      It all starts with attitude fulfilled with tutoring and education. If any of these are not in alignment, we can start way below 0 and our journey is so much harder. Worse, the longer it takes to assume a positive attitude in our journey, the less time we have to accelerate to success.

      The 10th core value – Critical Patriotism: is a slippery and yet rocky slope and road. The confusion of differences in core political ideology can cause such a build-up in anger and negativity. Religion will frequently get in the way as well. So often we have to center ourselves and remember “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.” by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.

      But it is incredibly hard!! I’ll bang on the keys like a jackhammer and not even realize it and my wife will say, “Remember your cancer is primarily caused by anger!”

      • Sam: Nate should send a copy of your message to his advertisers!

        Anyway, the flaw in Baker’s book is that words mean different things to different people these days. We are living in a new Tower of “Babble.”

        And that brings up something most people don’t know. Most of us here try to support our assertions with google references. But did you know your google is not the same as mine?

        If two people google a term, they may get very different lists of links–because google considers your history to determine what they think you WANT to see, not “what is.”

        I was shocked when I used two browsers on the SAME computer, and the links they gave were quite different.

        I mean, if we can’t even get the same “reality,” is there any hope for us?

        • Goethe – it’s all about Marketing – the three (of about 12) main search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo) will give different results on the three main browsers (IE, Firefox or Chrome). I personally use Chrome-Google 90% of the time, just my preference. I pay $45/mo to advertise on Google for my wife’s website – KathiMcKnight.com. some websites pay hundreds – maybe more – of $$/mo.

          You are so right about people and their interpretation of the same exact words – depending on how they are wired, emotional state, unique ecology, bias, brainwashing and drugs. We all try to see which interpretation fits best. Baker’s 10 core values sounded all very logical to me and would have trouble with why they wouldn’t to someone else.

          • Sam: Yeah, different browsers will give different search results, but I put in the same term, and Firefox gave me two different lists of links on my main computer than my second computer, on the same desk, using the same router and search engine as my secondary computer. It was just based on what I had searched using that browser.

            So it’s not just marketing. It’s also that the computer thinks it knows better than I do as to what I want. And the real problem with that is that if your list of links differs from mine, we also get a different view of reality. And so, even in areas where we might agree about ideals, we are being fed different perceptions of the world.

      • Sam: I split this because it’s an entirely different topic. And, I should say, your posts do get me thinking about a lot of different things.

        You mentioned illnesses as related to attitude. I believe you’re right. The brain is an electro-chemical machine, so it does make sense that chemicals secreted by the body would affect one’s thoughts, and vice-versa.

        Peace and love to you, dude.

        • Your very gracious Goethe – thank you so much for the words. In the pure energy dimension, positive emotion, peace and unconditional love is automatic and conclusive. I certainly project peace and love in return to you. It has taken so long – all those who i have zero tolerance for, thoroughly dislike, and don’t respect, there is still unconditional love at the core. I’m still a mean ol’ man with a lot of faults so the unconditional love may be a little less than for others, but it’s there.

          Anger is thought to be the biggest originator of cancer. It could be deep rooted or recent. I had a divorce in 2005 that included sexual frustration and impotency – Prostate cancer. Following was a very volatile relationship with a ton of bickering – Lymphoma in 2008 (totally unrelated to the Prostate cancer) that i have been in and out of remission but is now stabilized and slowly going away through chemo, diet, attitude, and Rife treatments. As I implied earlier if an organ is involved or flow tract, then the focused negative emotion can effect where and type of cancer. Louise Hay has a book out that is Naturalist / Holistic in nature and discusses in depth. Regardless of cancer type and aggressiveness – a person should seek professional MD-Oncologist help immediately. It’s cool to have a Naturalpath in addition. Have as many as possible solutions as someone is comfortable with.

          May you be cancer free through your life.

          • Sam: Thank you, my friend. You and I are tough old birds, so I figure we’ll outlive the spring chickens on here.

            But if I go first,do you want my VHS collection?

            • Goethe – What’s the line, . . . just fade away ? No thanks!!! Got about a hundred of my own i don’t know to do with. plus 2500 45’s, plus ~800 CDs and i’ve only .mp3’d about half of them.

  5. To All:

    I got an idea for an ongoing project: finding quotes that is is obvious that the person didn’t mean it, but felt that they had to be said.

    (1) This morning, the BBC asked a spokesman for Ukraine what he thought would happen next. The Ukranian said, “I BELIEVE that Crimea will continue to be an integral part of Ukraine.”

    –Yeah, right. It is, of course, possible that Russia will change its mind, AND that Crimeans will go back under Ukranian rule. Personally, I think it’s more likely that Crimea will become part of Russia, or that it will become independent. My point is that I do NOT believe that Ukranians “BELIEVE” that this is going to end wel for theml. BUT they have to SAY it will, otherwise, it would sound as if they agree with what is happening.

    (2) The CIA has been charged with breaking into the offices of the congressional investigation of the CIA–and removed files. Personally, I think this sounds exactly like Watergate. But when they asked the CIA spokesperson, he said “we did nothing wrong.”

    –Of course, that didn’t answer the question. It doesn’t say, “we didn’t do it.” So you could assume that he’s just saying they had a right to steal documents, presumably for “national security” (the answer to everything).

  6. Warning: Off-topic.

    Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook founder) has just complained to the US government for using the Internet to try to control our lives.

    He says indignantly, “that’s MY job.”

    • Goethe – Zuck is right (and I hope he said it with tongue in cheek; yes you can talk that way, but’s it’s hard) and certainly more his job than the Gov’s. And he provides bi-directional communication. However, he or his designates lets discrimination with respect to the first Amendment go to far, especially if some political “raps” are not to their liking.

      • Sam: Sorry. I was kidding. I put the words in his mouth because of the irony that nobody in the history of the world has ever sucked up so much personal information–and claimed to own it.

  7. @Goethe: “I’m also not crazy about paying Egypt, when it’s just to help Israel,not us. But, after all, it is just a continuation of that aid. Why are you so upset by it??”

    Why should anyone think that the U.S. would NOT include bribery in it’s big bag of tricks for running the world?

    @ samreusser: “Billy (& Goethe) – I don’t think we should send any $$ to anyone overseas right now till the debt and budget gets reduced somewhat.”

    Sam I’ve been a deficit hawk for over 20 years. We should have been paying down the debt (from the Pentagon budget) during the boom times of Clinton and George W. Bush, NOT in the middle of a depression/recession. But then Bush gave a huge tax cut to the wealthy and started two un-funded, off-budget, unnecessary wars which skyrocketed the debt. I don’t recall conservatives being upset by that. The military costs for past wars are now hidden in the “debt service” portion of the budget. Obama’s increases in the debt were almost totally due to the Bush depression due to less tax revenue and greater expenditures, and the continuation of the two wars. I find it highly suspicious that conservatives started being fiscally conservative only when there was an allegedly half-black, Nigerian socialist in the White House.

    @ samreusser: “But I’m pissed about Obama’s budget to decrease pay and benefits to military pers and vets (some lower grades who are already on food stamps) and move it over to unearned entitlement programs.

    I’m with you on the veterans benefits, Sam. Why shouldn’t I? I’ve benefited mightily from the G.I. bill when I was going to school, I’ve gotten several V.A. guranteed mortgages, and now I’m getting my health care from the V.A. and collecting a small disability. Are those “unearned”? Exactly what “unearned” entitlement programs are you referring to, Sam? Programs you don’t benefit from? Farm subsidies? Subsidies oil companies? Tax breaks for the wealthy? The welfare program for military contractors? I suspect you meant programs to help children and poor people who are forced to work two minimum wage jobs to keep from starving. But you can’t be a serious debt hawk if you aren’t willing to cut back on the half of our federal taxes that we blow on the military.

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