I’m a Bernie Sanders supporter. Nay…. I am more than that! I adore this man! On the day he announced his candidacy, I wept tears of joy as I set up my monthly donations. Finally, a vote I could cast without having to pick between the lesser of two complete bags of shit. I didn’t care if he could win. He had my full support as the only candidate not in the pockets of lobbyists and corporate scum. Furthermore, I was in awe at the brilliance of running for the Democratic nomination. Not only would he stop the inevitable of splitting the left wing vote, he would put pressure on Hillary Clinton to abandon some of her moderate stances for more progressive ideals.
Thus began the online battles – too many of them to count as the Bernie supporters set out on a quest to spread the gospel and convert as many voters as we possibly could. We were on a mission to change the world!
In my own personal battles, there is one particular trend of nay saying that makes my lips curl in a smile like the Grinch Who Stole Christmas: when the topic of how we are going to pay for all his idealistic plans illicit a “but we already have so much debt!” comment.
Now, I could proceed down the usual back and forth trajectory of “we tax the top 1%,” etc. But this leads nowhere. There are certain people who will continue to sympathize with the extremely rich, because in their heads, they truly believe that they will someday walk among them.
I….. take a different path.
I pose a question. Just three words:
What Is Debt?
You might not get a response at all. You might incite someone to investigate and find out for themselves, which will rock their world in all the wrong ways. You might get a wrong answer. What you will not get is the right answer, and if you do – and that person isn’t already on Team Sanders – then terminate the mission! You have encountered a member of the 1%.
The correct answer is: the entire economy. Over 97% of the money in circulation was created by the banks as debt, literally out of thin air. In very simple terms, this means that for every $1 in your pocket, someone else is $1 in debt. This is not unique to America, and the common practice (known as fractional reserve banking) is worldwide. (Some Scandinavian countries are beginning to abandon the system).
Here is another factoid to blow your opponent’s mind. The Federal Reserve is a private entity. The US Government borrows it’s own currency, and it pays for the pleasure of doing so. This has created a perpetual, inescapable debt cycle.
So what does this mean? This means that to argue any political agenda with “but we already have too much debt,” is to utter a wish for the economy to cease to exist. When money is created as debt, it is destroyed upon repayment. To reduce the debt is to shrink the economy.
Positive Money has a number of short videos to help you quickly understand everything you need to know to use this argument tactic. Incidentally, although the abolishment of fractional reserve banking and the federal reserve is not part of Bernie Sander’s campaign, this is by far the biggest contributor to the funneling of wealth to top 1% of 1%. To ignite someone’s passion to rally against this system is to win a Sanders supporter by close association.
Please keep in mind, someone is not stupid for not knowing this! I know some extremely intelligent people who have never heard of fractional reserve banking before. Try to avoid making anyone feel dumb. As my mother says, you attract more flies with honey than vinegar.
No go forth into the interwebs my children… and win us some more Bernie votes!!
TyLean Polley is an avant-garde recording artist. You can get a free download of her music at TyLeanPolley.com