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      Bernie Sanders will use a tax on Wall Street speculators to wipe out $1.6 trillion in US student debt

      Bernie Sanders's latest campaign promise is a proposal to forgive all outstanding US student debt, and raising the $2.2 trillion needed over a decade to make lenders whole by taxing Wall Street speculators with a 0.5% tax on stock trades, a 0.1% fee on bonds, and a 0.005% fee on derivatives. Read the rest

      Gabriel Zucman: the Piketty-trained "wealth detective" who catalogued the secret fortunes of the super-rich and figured out how to tax them

      Bloomberg's Ben Steverman offers a long and exciting profile of Gabriel Zucman (previously), a protege of Thomas Piketty (Zucman was one of the researchers on Piketty's blockbuster Capital in the 21st Century) who has gone on to a career at UC Berkeley, where he's done incredibly innovative blockbuster work of his own, particularly on estimating the true scale of the wealth gap in the USA and worldwide. Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders' "Thurgood Marshall Plan for Public Education" will desegregate schools, defund charters, pay teachers, end the school-to-prison pipeline

      Bernie Sanders has released A Thurgood Marshall Plan for Public Education, a detailed and bold suite of public education reforms reminiscent of the kinds of policy planks being laid down regularly by rival candidate Elizabeth Warren (I'm a donor to both Sanders' and Warren's campaigns). Read the rest

      Sanders and AOC team up for an anti-loansharking bill that will replace payday lenders with post-office banking

      Yesterday, Senator Bernie Sanders and Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez jointly introduced The Loan Shark Prevention Act, which will cap credit card interest rates at 15% (and closes the loopholes that lets credit card issuers exceed their stated APRs with the use of hidden fees) and which re-establishes American post-office banking. Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders announces a farmers' right-to-repair and antitrust proposal similar to Elizabeth Warren's

      Bernie Sanders' latest campaign plank is a suite of agricultural reforms similar to the ones proposed by Elizabeth Warren in March, including a national right-to-repair law for agricultural equipment, antitrust breakups of agribusiness seed, meatpacking and fertilizer monopolies, patent law reform to curb abuses of seed patents, reform of US trade agreements to support "domestic food security", rationalized supply management and a grain and feed reserve, national disaster coverage, relief for family farm bankruptcies, pro-diversity policies for 4H and other agricultural pipelines, incentives for regional co-ops, and a suite of climate change remediation measures. Read the rest

      A Sanders candidacy would make 2020 a referendum on the future, not a referendum on Trump

      One thing that immediately struck me in Lauren Gambino's excellent analysis of the Democratic nomination campaigns in The Guardian: a quote from GOP never-Trump political consultant Rick Wilson, who counseled Democrats not to select Bernie Sanders and make the election about actual policies, "Democrats have two choices: make this a referendum on Donald Trump or lose. That’s it. There are no other options." Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders outraised every other Democrat in North Carolina

      One major tactical consideration for Democrats in selecting their candidate for the 2020 presidential election is whether that candidate can garner support in flippable red states, like North Carolina: that's why it's so important that Bernie Sanders outraised every other would-be Democrat nominee in NC this year, bringing in $48,000 (his nearest competitor, Pete Buttigieg, raised $32K, while Kamala Harris raised $29K and Elizabeth Warren raised $20K) (I am a donor to both the Sanders and Warren campaigns). Sanders also outraised every other Democrat nationally and leads in polls with key traditional Democrat voting groups, including Hispanics. (Image: Gage Skidmore< CC-BY-SA) (via Naked Capitalism) Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders is the most popular candidate among Hispanic voters

      A Morning Consult poll of Hispanic voters shows 33% for Bernie Sanders, more than any other candidate from any party -- Joe Biden is polling at 24% and Beto O'Rourke is at 13%, with other Democrats trailing far behind. Three early primary states have large concentrations of Hispanic voters: California, Texas and Florida (California and Texas are also "delegate rich," with a significant impact on candidate selection within the national Democratic party). The majority of Sanders' campaign staffers are women, and 40% of the staff are people of color. Sanders outraised every other candidate, and I am a Sanders donor (I also donated to Elizabeth Warren's campaign). Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders raises $18.2m from 525,000 small-money donors (including me)

      At the end of 2019 first quarter fundraising for his campaign, would-be Democratic Party 2020 Presidential nominee Bernie Sanders has raised $18.2 million from 525,000 small-money donors (I'm one of them; I also gave to the Elizabeth Warren campaign). Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders cut his head on shower door, got 7 stitches, shows up to a health care town hall 2 hours later

      Bernie Sanders cut his head on the edge of a shower door, received 7 stitches at the hospital, and will pursue his schedule as planned in South Carolina and Nevada, says to his campaign. Read the rest

      The eminently electable Bernie Sanders enjoys strong support from African-Americans and young people

      When critics want to dismiss Bernie Sanders's bid to be the Democratic presidential candidate in 2020, the say that he is too old and too white, and incapable of bringing young people and racialized people to the polls, the way that, say, Obama did in 2008 (after all, American politics is as much a contest of who votes and who doesn't as it about whom they vote for). Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders introduces the Stop Walmart Act: no stock buybacks without a $15 minimum wage

      Bernie Sanders's latest legislative proposal is the Stop Walmart Act; Sanders describes Walmart as the "poster child for corporate greed" and uses that as a launching point to propose a ban on stock buybacks from companies unless they pay their lowest-waged employees $15/hour. Read the rest

      Yanis Varoufakis on capitalism's incompatibility with democracy

      It's a not-very-well-kept secret that elements of the libertarian right believe that democracy is incompatible with capitalism (tldr: if majorities get to vote, they'll vote to tax rich minorities and since rich people are in the minority they'll always lose that vote); and as this persuasive and fascinating lecture and Q&A with former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis (previously) shows, the feeling is mutual. Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders and Yanis Varoufakis announce Progressives International, to counter rising ultra-nationalism

      Bernie Sanders and Yanis Varoufakis (previously) (the "libertarian Marxist" former Greek finance minister who split with his party and resigned over their embrace of austerity) have announced the formation of a new global organizations called "Progressives International," designed to serve as a check to the rising cult of ultra-nationalist authoritarian groups. Read the rest

      Nobel-winning economist Joe Stiglitz on how the US economy became a "rigged, inherited plutocracy" and how to fix it

      Writing in Scientific American (!), Nobel-prize-winning economist Joseph E Stiglitz (previously) describes the US economy as an "inherited plutocracy" that's "rigged" to shift an ever-greater share of the national wealth to the very richest people: Stiglitz blames the rigging on Ronald Reagan's dismantling of antitrust enforcement, inheritance tax, and other progressive measures 40 years ago -- and says that the orthodox economic apologists for economists who attribute inequality to globalism or other factors are wrong and unsupported by evidence. Read the rest

      NYT: Saudi Arabia's Prince Charming was Mister Bone Saw all along

      Everybody knows that Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the brutal killing and dismemberment of journalist Jamal Khashoggi (everybody, that is, except the Trumps, who coincidentally do a lot of business with the House of Saud) and the lurid brutality of that murder has prompted calls for western businesses to reconsider their increasingly cozy relationship with Mohammed bin Salman. Read the rest

      Bernie Sanders on fighting global authoritarianism

      Bernie Sanders -- who seems to have kicked off a 2020 presidential bid -- writes about the terrifying global parallels to Trumpism, from Japan to the Philippines to Hungary to Turkey and beyond, and talks about how an international solidarity movement has to advance a positive agenda of how the world can be taken back from looters and environmental crisis as a global tonic to these dictators-in-waiting. Read the rest

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