Writing, Organizing, & Creative Arts
“In August, 1990–after the Bush administration enticed Iraq into invading Kuwait–Sanders said he wasn’t “going to let some damn war cost him the election,” according to a staff member who was present at the time. So Sanders backed the buildup in the Persian Gulf and dumped on the left anti-imperialist peace movement, singling out his former allies like Dave Dellinger for public criticism.
…The unauthorized Democratic candidate in 1990, Delores Sandoval, an African American faculty member at the University of Vermont, was amazed that the official party treated her as a nonperson and Bernie kept outflanking her to her right. She opposed the Gulf build-up, Bernie supported it. She supported decriminalization of drug use and Bernie defended the war on drugs, and so on…..
“Bill Clinton and his war cabinet began an around-the-clock assault on the Serbian people. … Bernie Sanders made it clear he was completely on board with the action. Indeed, after antiwar activists in Burlington, Vermont marched through downtown Burlington stopping at the offices of each Senator and ending at Sanders’ office where they staged a sit-in, Bernie instructed his office staff via telephone to call the police and clear the office. A week later at an emergency town meeting on the bombing in Montpelier, Vermont Sanders showed up with a couple staff members and a panel of pro and antiwar speakers. Bernie vehemently defended the bombing and actually told at least two members of the audience to leave if they didn’t like what he was saying.
…September 2001. After thousands of people are killed in the World Trade Center and Pentagon, President George Bush and Congress declared war on Afghanistan. Sanders joined the bandwagon and voted to adopt the joint resolution that authorized the President to use the United States Armed Forces against anyone involved with the attacks of September 11th, 2001 and any nation that harbors these individuals. In October 2002, after two years of war on the people of Afghanistan and a series of lies and misinformation, Congress and the White House (with help from Great Britain and a couple other governments) ignored the United Nations and world opinion and invaded Iraq. While Sanders voted against the original authorization to use military force against Iraq, he followed that vote with several subsequent votes authorizing funding of that war and the debacle in Afghanistan.
…in 2006, he voted Yea on legislation that made the remaining fourteen provisions of the Patriot Act permanent and extended the authority of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to conduct “roving wiretaps” and access certain business records through December 31, 2009. In a similar vein, Sanders voted against the original legislation that created the Department of Homeland Security, but by 2006 he had joined the majority of Congress in passing continued funding of that agency.
“His unconditional support and vote for Israel’s incursion into the Gaza Strip is a blatant contradiction and is utterly inconsistent with his antiwar policy in the Middle East. What about saving the kids and senior citizens by cutting $30 billion in American taxpayers’ aid over the next decade to fund Israel’s state welfare and military occupation?
Why not kill two birds with one stone? By condemning Israel’s illegal occupation and remaining consistent to stated antiwar principles, the children and Senior citizens living in the United States will have brighter futures, while Americans will walk away with a $30 billion bonus to reinvest at home.
Sanders once said, Let us wage a moral and political war against the billionaires and corporate leaders, on Wall Street and elsewhere, whose policies and greed are destroying the middle class of America.
Sanders talks the talk, but his support to fund Israel with billions of taxpayers’ dollars to fund wars and an illegal occupation, shows he is an inconsistent walking contradiction.”
Bernie likes Guns, but Gun Control? Not so much…
He sides with the manufacturers… and against victims.
Now I think every American has a right to purchase a gun, but gun manufacturers have a responsibility to step up to the plate when their products are defective. But Bernie gave them a get out of jail free card. Here is an interesting and scary piece by Mark Stern, writing for Slate:
Tim Flanagan, associate editor at ThePeaceresource
“When Vermont’s Sen. Bernie Sanders jumped into the 2016 presidential race, he was widely hailed as a far-left socialist who would appeal to the liberal wing of the Democratic Party. A liberal challenge to Hillary Clinton, said Politico. True progressives’ liberal alternative, trumpeted FiveThirtyEight. But before liberal Democrats flock to Sanders, they should remember that the Vermont senator stands firmly to Clinton’s right on one issue of overwhelming importance to the Democratic base: gun control. During his time in Congress, Sanders opposed several moderate gun control bills. He also supported the most odious NRA–backed law in recent memory—one that may block Sandy Hook families from winning a lawsuit against the manufacturer of the gun used to massacre their children.”
“Sanders, an economic populist and middle-class pugilist, doesn’t talk much about guns on the campaign trail. But his voting record paints the picture of a legislator who is both skeptical of gun control and invested in the interests of gun owners—and manufacturers. In 1993, then-Rep. Sanders voted against the Brady Act, which mandated federal background checks for gun purchasers and restricted felons’ access to firearms. As a senator, Sanders supported bills to allow firearms in checked bags on Amtrak trains and block funding to any foreign aid organization that registered or taxed Americans’ guns. Sanders is dubious that gun control could help prevent gun violence, telling one interviewer after Sandy Hook that “if you passed the strongest gun control legislation tomorrow, I don’t think it will have a profound effect on the tragedies we have seen.
…But Sanders’ vote for a different kind of pro-gun bill is more puzzling—and profoundly disturbing. In 2005, a Republican-dominated Congress passed the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). This law doesn’t protect gun owners; it protects gun manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and importers. The PLCAA was the No. 1 legislative priority of the National Rifle Association for years, because it shields gun makers and dealers from most liability when their firearms are used criminally. It is one of the most noxious pieces of pro-gun legislation ever passed. And Bernie Sanders voted for it. (Sanders’ campaign has not replied to a request for comment.)
Before the PLCAA, most states imposed some form of tort liability on gun makers and sellers. … Victims of gun violence and their families could recover financially from the people and companies who negligently enabled gun violence.
The PLCAA changed all that. Remarkably, the act wiped out gun liability laws in all 50 states, rendering them invalid except for a handful of narrow exceptions. (So much for states’ rights.) Thanks to the law, victims of mass shootings are barred from suing the companies that produced a wartime weapon that no civilian could ever need. With few exceptions, victims cannot sue a gun seller for negligently providing a semiautomatic weapon to a lunatic who shoots them in a movie theater. Even if a jury decides a gun maker or seller should be liable, the PLCAA invalidates its verdict. The law tramples upon states’ rights, juries’ rights, and fundamental precepts of America’s civil justice system. And it received Bernie Sanders’ support—in both 2003 (when it was first introduced) and 2005 (when it finally passed).”
here is the rest of the story at Slate: http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2015/05/bernie_sanders_on_guns_vermont_independent_voted_against_gun_control_for.html
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