For John, BLUF: Democratic Party Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders believes in Unicorns and Democratic Socialism. Nothing to see here; just move along.
"Sanders’s Speech About Socialism Was Deeply Unserious/In the senator’s view, the threat of autocracy comes exclusively from the right."
From The Atlantic, by Writer Yascha Mounk, 13 June 2019.
Here is what Professir Althouse excerpted:
If Sanders was coy about the details of a “socialist” economy, he was downright disdainful of the notion that a speech on socialism and authoritarianism should seriously grapple with the long history of socialist movements that have ended in dictatorship. In his view, the threat of autocracy comes exclusively from the right. Just as in the 1930s, “America and the world are once again moving towards authoritarianism.” This danger is driven by “right-wing forces of oligarchy, corporatism, nationalism, racism, and xenophobia.” The only answer that will stave off fascism is, you guessed it, “democratic socialism.”When, as a Democrat, you have lost The Atlantic, you are in trouble. Notwithstanding, "Socialism" polls well amongst younger voters. That, however, is on the heads of school teachers and textbook writers. Shame on you.
Thus Sanders name-checked Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini but remained silent about Joseph Stalin and Mao Zedong. And while he rightly decried the autocratic tendencies of Russia’s Vladimir Putin, China’s Xi Jinping, Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed bin Salman, the Philippines’ Rodrigo Duterte, Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro, and Hungary’s Viktor Orbán, he neglected to mention leftist autocrats such as Venezuela’s Nicolás Maduro, Cuba’s Raúl Castro, Nicaragua’s Daniel Ortega, Zimbabwe’s Emmerson Mnangagwa, or North Korea’s Kim Jung Un. Indeed, the only connection between socialism and autocracy that Sanders was willing to acknowledge is the one that exists in the feverish imagination of the ignorant right: He decried the “red-baiting” in which Republicans have long engaged.
The implication was obvious. Anybody who was hoping for a clear account of the differences between Sanders’s political ambitions and those of autocratic socialist regimes is a fellow traveler of Richard Nixon, Newt Gingrich, John Boehner, Donald Trump, and the Heritage Foundation....
The speech Sanders gave was not serious.
Hat tip to Ann Althouse.
Regards — Cliff