Just ask them.
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There have been some recent videos on television and the Internet showing young supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders being interviewed and asked why they support the Vermont senator. Many say they want free education and other entitlements, but have no idea how to pay for it. Those who claim to like the Socialist agenda, cannot explain the differences between socialism and capitalism. For example, they are clueless about the recent problems in Greece. Supporting Bernie though is the “hip” thing to do from a young person’s perspective. It is reminiscent of the Winston Churchill quote whereby, “Any 20 year-old who isn’t a liberal doesn’t have a heart, and any 40 year-old who isn’t a conservative doesn’t have a brain.”
To illustrate the problem, it is disheartening that younger people do not understand who pays the most in income taxes, the 1% they love to lambast, or the rest of the country. According to Pew Research – “In 2013, according to our analysis of preliminary IRS data, people with adjusted gross incomes above $250,000 paid nearly half (48.9%) of all individual income taxes, though they accounted for only 2.4% of all returns filed. Their average tax rate (total taxes paid divided by cumulative AGI) was 25.6%. By contrast, people whose incomes were less than $50,000 accounted for 63.4% of all individual income tax returns filed in 2013, but they paid just 6.2% of total taxes; their average tax rate was 4.2%.”
Other research firms confirm these figures. Even though the 1% pay more than their fair share, young people believe they should pay more. If their average tax rate rises much higher, such as above 50%, you will likely see a mass exodus from our shores.
Youth also believe they are entitled to free higher education. I personally do not subscribe to this notion as I see it more as a privilege as opposed to a guaranteed right. Nonetheless, the United States is already having difficulty paying off our record tax debt ($19T) and a $5.8T budget deficit. This simply means we are losing more than we are taking in. Now add on free education, which has been estimated as high as $5T and the problem is compounded further. When you ask young people how this should be paid, they again point at the 1%. However, there are limits on how much the 1% can pay, and when the money is gone, the entitlements are gone.
If Sen. Sanders’ supporters really want to feel the “Bern,” elect him President and watch them try to pay for it all. It will be one heck of a wake up call.
I do not believe Democrats, in general, know the difference between Socialism and being a Democrat; even the head of the DNC, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, admits she doesn’t know, so why should the rest of her party? The difference between Sen. Sanders and Sec. Clinton is that Bernie openly admits he is Socialist, Hillary will not.
I too want to do what is fair, but I also do not want to be driven into the poor house. This is what happens when the uninformed and naive vote.
Keep the Faith!