Support for presidential candidate Bernie Sanders and his vision of a socialist utopia requires some combination of naivety, fantasy, ignorance about history and economics, and a susceptibility to illusion. In a recent column (Jan. 12), Greg Kesich suggests that voters who have moderate goals should support Sanders. But there is nothing moderate about Bernie Sanders or his proposals. They are revolutionary, and not all revolutions are desirable.

The proposals are unaffordable. Sanders concedes that his “Medicare for All” plan would cost “somewhere between $30 and $40 trillion over a 10-year period.” There is $30 trillion for job guarantees, $16 trillion for a version of the Green New Deal and more. The planned large tax increases, including higher middle-class rates, would cover less than half of the projected spending. The difference would more than double the trillion-dollar annual federal deficits that are already expected over the next decade.

These financial costs are in addition to the debilitating societal effects of diminished individual responsibility and increased dependency, which are the inevitable results of socialism.

Setting goals based on good intentions is easy. Achieving them responsibly is harder. Capitalism is challenging and its outcomes are uneven, but no other system in history has produced as much prosperity for as many people. Experience from around the world suggests that Bernie Sanders’ socialism would not do nearly as well. The greater likelihood is that his utopian dreams would become a nightmare for the rest of us.

Martin Jones


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