The Democrats’ frontrunner has an ugly history of apologizing for brutal dictators.
February 27, 2020
ITEM #1: With his runaway victory last weekend in Nevada’s caucuses, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders solidified his standing as the frontrunner in the Democrats’ race for President.
As you’d expect with any frontrunner — but especially so with one who makes the Democrat/media establishment nervous the way Sanders does (see ITEM #2 for more on this) — his record is starting to get some scrutiny. And boy, is there a lot to talk about.
We all know that many on the left have always had a soft spot in their hearts for authoritarian regimes, particularly those built on the socialist economic system. But even among that crowd, Sanders’ history as an apologist for some of the world’s must brutal dictators stands out.
Just a few days ago, the self-described socialist created some buzz when, in an interview with 60 Minutes, he doubled down on his past defenses of the Castro regime that has brought nothing but human suffering to Cuba.
Writing for National Review, David Harsanyi breaks down the significance of this in a piece aptly titled “Why Bernie Sanders’s Praise of Fidel Castro Matters”:
“Bernie Sanders is old-school, still in the habit of praising old comrades. 'When Fidel Castro came into office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing?' Bernie told 60 Minutes this past weekend, reacting to criticism of his near-complete praise of the dictator back in the 1980s.
"The answer is: Yes, massive literacy programs instituted using the machinery of a tyranny are, indeed, a bad thing."
After noting that "Cubans haven’t been able to freely read about their own oppression since Castro took power," Harsanyi hits on the inevitable conclusion: "[T]he only possible reason any American would feel the need to defend that dictator’s programs — Sanders once said Castro 'educated the children, gave them health care' — is because they’re sympathetic to the cause."
It’s simply absurd that anyone, when pressed on the topic of one of the worst monsters in history, would think that health care programs and education are the most relevant points to hone in on. Yet that’s been Bernie’s M.O. when it comes to Castro, and plenty of other tyrants, for decades.
It’s morally repugnant.
By the way, isn’t it remarkable how none of Sanders’ rivals for the nomination ever call him out on any of this? You’d think that consistent support for some of the most oppressive, thuggish regimes the world has ever seen would lend itself to some pretty strong and effective attacks. The explanation for the silence is one of two things. Either the other leading Democrats fear attacking Sanders on this front would repel too many voters among the party’s base, or they themselves are at least sympathetic to Bernie’s perspective.
Whichever the case may be, it’s quite an indictment of today’s Democrats.
And of course, we’ve barely scratched the surface when it comes to the problems with Bernie Sanders, his views, and his record. Which means there will be plenty to check out in next week’s Morning Source — and beyond.
ITEM #2: As we alluded to above, the Sanders Tsunami has the Democrat Party establishment in full panic mode, as they find themselves in a classic damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t situation.
As uber-liberal Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne put it:
“[President Donald] Trump would love to tie the entire Democratic Party to ‘crazy socialism’ — but he’d also relish attacking ‘the Democratic establishment’ for denying Sanders the nomination. What petrifies Democrats is that not one of their candidates, whether on the left or in the middle, has found a way out of this box.”
Indeed, the Democrat establishment recognizes that a Sanders nomination could not only cost them the White House, but would only make it more difficult for them to win down-ballot. But if the powers that be were to step in and give the nod to someone else, they’d risk a significant drop in turnout among much of their far-left base.
So as with all the Democrat debates thus far, the real winners of the Nevada Democrat caucus were … Donald Trump and the Republicans.
ITEM #3: One more thing on the Nevada caucuses. The New York Times reports:
“The final results of the Nevada Democratic caucuses were released on Monday, and the data appears to contain errors and inconsistencies similar to those that plagued the contests in Iowa a few weeks ago.
“An analysis by The New York Times found flaws in the results of at least 9 percent of precincts, including some instances in which delegates appeared to have been given to the wrong candidates.”
Can’t Democrats get anything right?
ITEM #4: With Nevada’s political left clamoring for new taxes, it’s worth asking a question: What exactly should those who would foot the bill expect to get for all that additional money taken out of their wallets?
Lessons from other states suggest the answer is: not much.
In fact, the evidence demonstrates that places with higher tax burdens often see lower quality when it comes to government services and outputs. The Las Vegas Review-Journal explains in a recent editorial:
“When it comes to government, you don’t always get what you pay for. Just ask the residents of New York and California.
“Taxes in both deep blue states are extremely high. In 2017, state and local governments in New York collected more than $9,000 per person. That was the highest in the nation. California ranked ninth, raking in more than $6,100 per capita. Large states run by Republicans took in a fraction of that. Per capita tax collections were $4,200 in Texas and $3,700 in Florida. That data comes from the Tax Foundation.
“With all that extra money, you’d expect New York and California residents to be receiving much higher quality government services. You’d be wrong.”
The piece goes into depth on how, despite taxing their citizens to a greater degree, and despite spending considerably more on education, New York and California lag lower-spending states when it comes to student achievement.
It’s no secret that Silver State Democrats want to impose the California model — higher taxes, more spending — on Nevada. And they’re free to make their case. But voters should know what the results are likely to be.
ITEM #5: Former Vice President Joe Biden is having a killer week — meaning he’s killing his campaign for president.
In the aftermath of Democrats’ failed impeachment attempt — which succeeded only in shining the light on the corrupt dealings of Biden and his family, rather than any wrongdoing by President Trump — things have only continued to get worse for the one-time Democrat frontrunner.
First he got crushed by socialist Bernie Sanders in the Nevada caucuses.
Then he got caught saying he never said South Carolina was his “firewall,” even though there’s a video of him saying South Carolina was his firewall.
Then he claimed he worked with Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping on the Paris Climate Accord — even though Deng left office in 1992 and died 23 years ago.
And he wrapped it all up by telling an audience in South Carolina he was running for U.S. SENATE.
This has gone beyond sad. It’s time for a Biden family intervention.
ITEM #6: How desperate are the Trump-haters on the left and in the media (but we repeat ourselves)?
A “major” story out of the swamp this week reported that the value of gifts to the Trump family from foreign leaders dropped from $140,000 in 2017 to $88,420 in 2018.
ITEM #7: Federal Judge David C. Bury ruled last week that the conditions in Border Patrol holding facilities in Arizona were unacceptable. The open-borders crowd immediately took to social media, cheering the decision and slamming President Trump.
The lawsuit was brought by migrants complaining about the conditions in the holding cells … in 2015. That was during BARACK OBAMA’s administration, BEFORE Trump was elected.
ITEM #8: Pop quiz…
Liberal: “People who oppose government-run health care are poorly educated.”
Conservative: “Who runs education?”
“Before Trump, you know I'm not ashamed to admit it I had to get the food stamps and stuff. And after you know I got a job." – Terry Grooms, lifelong Ohio DEMOCRAT for Trump
“Let me tell you about your record, your record is so bad you ought to be ashamed of yourself. You have probably the worst record in the history of broadcasting.” – President Donald Trump to CNN’s Jim Acosta
“The democrat front runner (Bernie Sanders) is self-described socialist aged 78, looks 98, just had a heart attack--and looks like he sleeps in his car.” – Larry Elder
“Bernie Sanders is perfectly fine with Castro locking up dissidents, murdering political opponents, and starving their citizens as long as they have literacy tests so the people can read while they get murdered.” – Charlie Kirk
“By the way, we’ll lose 49 states.” – MSDNC’s Chris Matthews on what will happen to Democrats if Bernie Sanders is their nominee
“A (Bernie) Sanders presidency threatens to fill the White House with extremists who are far more interested in tearing things down than finding constructive ways to fix social problems.” – Las Vegas Sun
“I could teach anybody, even people in this room, no offense intended, to be a farmer. It’s a process. You dig a hole, you put a seed in, you put dirt on top, add water, up comes the corn.” – Mini-Mike Bloomberg, 2016
“Hey, Bloomberg. You know as much about farming as a hog knows about an airplane, so how are you going to teach somebody else how to do it? Better stay in NYC where corn comes in cans.” – Country rock legend Charlie Daniels
“I will use the Executive emergency powers of the presidency to tell companies how they can generate electricity, what kind of cars they can build, what kind of buildings we’re gonna have.” – Tom Steyer