It also calls into question his entire fiscal history. And what you find isn't all that savory.
Bernie is sort of typical of a certain mindset in America - what Donald Trump would rightfully call "losers." There are some people who never seem to succeed in America, largely due to their own malfeasance. And quite frankly, I would be shocked if Bernie Sanders could pass a urine test, if you get what I am saying.
Since they are not successful at life, they resent and decry those who are - even those of moderate wealth and success. Since they were denied the fruits of our economic system, they want to insure no one else gets them either. So they advance ideas like Communism or Socialism - where the government takes away and then redistributes wealth, so even those who don't even try will win. Why should someone have to work hard to succeed? Shouldn't the government provide for the general welfare of everybody and make sure we all have a guaranteed minimum income?
These are attractive arguments to people who haven't succeeded. Folks who never bothered to take their education seriously or tried to work hard at a job, or felt that hard work was beneath them. I am not sure, but I am guessing Bernie Sanders never scrubbed toilets for minimum wage. I did. Working those shitty jobs did two things for me - they paid the bills and put food on my table, and they also convinced me that I didn't want to do shitty jobs the rest of my life.
Of course, the problem with these "-isms" is that over time, they have been amply demonstrated not to work under any circumstance. When you pay people regardless of their merits, there is no incentive to work hard or improve yourself. The fate of the Soviet Union and pre-industrialized China are apt illustrations. The Soviet Union fell apart due to the folly of Communism. China languished and people were actually starving to death, until they embraced the capitalist model - and then succeeded beyond anyone's expectations.
And our own society has morphed over time into a quasi-Capitalist, quasi-Socialist economy. We don't have guaranteed incomes or plush social benefits in this country, but if you fall off the social economic ladder, there is indeed a safety net of services you can fall back on. That guy with the cardboard sign at the intersection isn't "homeless" but a drug addict who decided that being stoned all day long was a far better gig than a "job" - the latter of which pays less than panhandling.
Our country is hardly "broken" as both Trump and Sanders like to posit. We are, in fact, quite well off, and our economy is doing quite well compared to Europe, Latin America, South America, Africa, Russia, and even China. In fact, our economy is really the only one today that is not in recession. Manufacturing is growing in the USA, thanks to more reasonable labor rates and lower costs of production. Of course, that could all come screaming to a halt if Sanders is elected and minimum wage is hiked to the sky.
But where does the anger of Sanders come from? And what is he attempting to accomplish? As noted before, his anger is really the result of his own failures in life - his inability to do anything of merit in either the private sector or public. While kooky Vermonters will re-elect him to office indefinitely, he really hasn't accomplished much in his long tenure in the Senate. While it is fun to play the outsider and run as a "Socialist" it means that your vote is not courted by either side of the aisle, and you don't get a lot of major committee assignments. And on the committees you are on, your voice is largely ignored.
So how is Sanders trying to destroy America? Simply by running for President, which he has no chance of winning, he could alter the outcome of the next election. First, he runs as a Democrat, even though until now he has refused to join the Democratic party. He did this to foil Hillary - he could have run as a Socialist or an Independent, but again, Socialists are irrelevant in the greater scheme of things and such a campaign would fail to generate any interest. He wanted to confront Hillary head-on and damage her in the primary process.
And it is already working. We are seeing a strategy of carefully placed conspiracy-theory stories (often placed by Sanders himself) that the entire election is "rigged" and that voters are being turned away from the polls, sometimes by Bill Clinton in person! The fact that he gets fewer votes overall isn't the issue - it is all about "the fix" which sounds a lot like the sour grapes from the Al Gore era. And as for super-delegates, he is happy to have their votes, of course. But if they dare to vote for Hillary, he denounces the entire scheme as a "fix" even as he tries to flip their votes.
And a fix it is - as in a "repair". The Democratic Super-delegate system was put into place after the debacle that was the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago. Then, as now, a lot of young people who were long on agitation but short on actual voting showed up and caused a riot. The convention was divided and the resulting nominee - Hubert Humphrey - was nobody's first choice. In fact, he didn't enter or win a single primary. The convention effectively ruined the Democrats' chances in 1968. Middle America saw the violence and disarray and flocked to the safety of Nixon and Law-and-Order.
The super-delegate system was enacted to avoid such a debacle. Party loyalists would have a percentage of delegates that would insure that no ugly fights broke out on the convention floor - or that an outsider such as a Trump or a Sanders would hijack the party. And since 1968, the system has worked pretty well. Sanders looks to wreck this - and the Democratic Party - by causing a convention fight and accusing Hillary of corruption and voter fraud.
While this alone might not cause Hillary to lose, if Sanders decides to run as an independent or Socialist (the latter of which he actually proclaims to be) then enough votes could be siphoned off from Hillary to let Donald Trump win the election.
And there is precedent for this. When Ross Perot ran as a third-party candidate against George Bush, he siphoned off enough votes to allow Bill Clinton to win. When Ralph Nader ran against Al Gore, he siphoned off enough votes to put the Florida results in doubt. If Nader has bowed out and his supporters voted for Gore, he would have easily won Florida and the White House and the world today would be a different place. No war in Iraq. No war in Syria. No ISIS. Maybe not even a 9/11. It is hard to say.
But Sanders fails to see any of this. He is delusional and a classic Narcissist. Nothing he does is ever wrong. Nothing he says ever needs to be retracted - such as his comments that white people will never know what poverty is like (even though whites outnumber blacks among the ranks of the poor). He actually believes that America will elect a Socialist, and he actually believes that he can enact his wild agenda of radical change without the cooperation of Congress.
At first I thought Sanders was a sincere person with Left-wing views. I thought he was sort of the "conscience of the Party" kind of candidate - keeping alive some ideals and views that might get shouted down in a general election. But increasingly, it appears he is no such person. He isn't even a Democrat. He is an outsider who has come to the party not to join it, but to wreck it.
And the stakes are too high for this narcissistic fool to win at his sick game.
Think about it. You are a 20-something who has graduated from college with student loan debts. Saunders tells you what you want to hear - like any evil politician will do. He will erase your student loan debts, guarantee you a job, and reduce your rent - and the best part is, no one will have to pay for it except of course, the "fat cats" he will tax to death. It is a nice fantasy, but the reality is, these things will never pass Congress. And Middle America - your parents - will not vote for Sanders.
If he runs as an independent, Trump or Cruz might win. What will that mean? Well, for starters, your legalized marijuana will go away and go away quickly. Yes, marijuana is still illegal at the Federal level, and the only thing keeping the DEA at bay is a Democratic President in the White House. You fought for your legalized pot long and hard. Are you now going to give it all away just to make some sort of "statement" or protest vote?
And people are that stupid, throughout history. Tyrants come into power not through majority vote or by popular acclaim, but because the opposition is divided over petty differences. Name a ruthless dictator in history and chances are, his opposition handed him power by failing to unite in a common cause with their own allies.
Sadly, I see this going down in the very same way. Sanders does not seem willing to concede the election, even as Hillary comes with 200 votes of the nomination. He wants an ugly fight and it sounds to me like he will try to run as an independent. This is handing the election to Trump on a platter.
Thus, when it comes to Trump versus Sanders, while both candidates scare me, Sanders scares me more. He is more of a threat to the election as he is utterly delusional about his chances of winning. Trump, on the other hand, actually seems to be on track to win the nomination, if he doesn't screw things up too badly in the next few races. And on the GOP side, the alternatives to Trump are even scarier than Trump himself.
UPDATE: A reader writes that they are unhappy with any of the choices presented in this race. A lot of people feel that way in every election ever held.
There is no perfect candidate. There are, however, the wrong candidates.
Political maturity is understanding that there will never be a candidate that reflects all of our own personal opinions, only a compromise as to the best option from what is presented.