Bernie Sanders’ appeal among young people has increasingly focused on delivering the supposed benefits a socialist society can give them; free education, free health care, and a government-mandated ‘living wage.’ But his vision for a socialist utopia flies in the face of reason – and the saddening saga of socialism in Europe.
Sanders’ latest missive accusing Senator Mitch McConnell of denying pensions to coal miners in Kentucky, West Virginia and Pennsylvania typifies a fervent belief that the government can be a cure to all ills. The coal industry has been hit hard over recent years – in particular because of the shift to cheap natural gas, but also, because of increasingly onerous government regulations that have impact the costs of production. As a consequence several large producers are now threatened with bankruptcy and restructuring. A bipartisan bill was floated in Congress to enable the Federal Government to step in and fund the miners’ pensions in situations in which the companies go out of business.