Dan Bongino, one of my favorite writers and radio talk show hosts, wrote an open letter to Millennials considering Bernie Sanders in Conservative Review. If you aren’t already reading Conservative Review, you should start now. One of the few great conservative publications being published today.
I understand that you are both anxious and frustrated. Anxious, because both the economy, and your job prospects, are struggling right now. Frustrated, because the legions of promises made to you by politicians from members of both political parties have amounted to nothing but fast-talk. You are right to be anxious about the future, and to be frustrated by the present.
But, I’m pleading with you to consider what candidates such as Bernie Sanders are selling you. I was always taught to be skeptical of people who speak as if they have all of the answers, and I’m guessing that you were taught the same. With that in mind, doesn’t it make you suspicious that Bernie Sanders has an easy “answer” to all of your concerns, and the answer is the same to every question?
Do you have concerns about your job future? Bernie’s answer is “More government spending.” But, we have spent unprecedented amounts of tax-payer money over the past 7 years (almost 10 trillion in NEW debt) and we still have a historic 94 million Americans out of work. Additionally, according to Louis Woodhill writing at Real Clear Markets, “The ‘headline’ (U-3) unemployment rate has fallen by almost half (from 9.5% to 4.9%) since the end of the last recession. However, almost all (92.2%) of the reported improvement has been the result of workers withdrawing from the labor force. Only 7.8% of the gain was produced by actual job creation.”Do you have concerns about your healthcare? Bernie’s answer is “More government healthcare spending, and a government-takeover of the healthcare system.” But, after Obamacare’s dramatic expansion of government-controlled healthcare in the form of Medicaid, we STILL have millions of uninsured Americans with healthcare premiums all over the country rising by double-digits.
Do you have concerns about the exploding costs of college? Bernie’s answer is “free” college. Ironically, the Obama administration took over the student loan market and dramatically expanded the role of government yet the costs of college are still growing. In fact, a recent N.B.E.R. study blamed nearly ALL of the exploding costs of college on government intervention.
Have you thought that government may be the cause, not the solution here?
Don’t you find it a bit odd that the government plays an enormous role in the healthcare and higher-education payment systems and these are the two items Bernie Sanders complains about the most with regard to costs? Have you thought that government may be the cause, not the solution here? Whenever you implement a third-party-payer system and ask the government to “pay” for something, you necessarily separate the consumer (the patient in healthcare or the student in higher education) from the supplier (the doctor or the college). When the consumer and the supplier cannot negotiate (because the government is in the way) costs will always spiral out of control. Rising costs are the results of the consumer thinking the government is “paying,” consequently being less sensitive to costs. Likewise the supplier isn’t as concerned about relentlessly hiking prices because the government is “paying” for it, not the consumer.
In conclusion, I know you’re upset. Most of us are too. I’m just asking you to think critically about any person promising you a cure-all for that ails you. The answers are never easy. If they were, all of us would already have the answers and we would have no use for fast-talking politicians. But, when you understand that politicians crave power over all else, the fast talk and promises make more sense.
Be guided by this one simple principle; when in doubt, follow the money. Higher taxes as a solution to our economic woes? Who gets the money under that scenario? Not you, but the political class who uses it to dole out favors to their well-connected friends. Government-controlled medicine which is “free”? Who gets the money under that scenario? Government bureaucrats who get to ration the money, and the healthcare it is supposed to fund. Finally, “free” college? Who gets the money under that scenario? Government bureaucrats and colleges who can ruthlessly raise prices because they’re taking it from the tax-payers.
Remember, socialism provides easy answers only to those unwilling to ask the hard questions. Be skeptical.