Either I’m crazy or Bernie Sanders’ 8.5 hour Wall Street speech should be in the news, not Hillary Clinton’s speeches. I am disappointed that there has been more coverage of the speeches that Hillary Clinton gave to various Wall Street corporations than to the 8.5 hour filibuster that Bernie Sanders gave against them.
While Hillary will not release the transcripts of her speeches, Bernie has published his. Literally. The book is called The Speech. A Historic Filibuster on Corporate Greed and the Decline of Our Middle Class. It is a beautiful read. A powerful read. And a must read for this election cycle.
The filibuster occurred in 2010 when Bernie Sanders spoke on the Senate floor against the extension of the Bush-era tax cuts that were skewered towards the wealthy and diverted money from Social Security.
In addition to these vote specifics items Sanders expanded his speech to include income inequality, Wall Street bonuses, the Wall Street bailout, CEO compensation, estate taxes, NAFTA and free trade deals, rising college tuition rates, student loan debt, those without health care, those with health care but expensive out-of-pocket costs, prescription drug costs, Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare, global warming, childhood poverty, incarceration rates, the plight of immigrants, inadequate education funding, lack of veteran care funding, the Iraq War and concern for our national debt.
And of course, weaved throughout the speech, the intense and negative impact and effect of lobbyists and the donor class on our democracy.
In many ways, it was an 8.5 hour stump speech.
And that is my point. Instead of focusing on what Clinton may have said, we should instead focus on what Bernie did say. And does say. And has been saying consistently over decades. It would provide more insight into his true convictions than the current debate system or news coverage. The latter has become so defunct that networks now hire super pac directors to give commentary.
The contrasts between the published book of Sanders and secret transcripts of Clinton perfectly epitomizes the stark differences between the two candidates. Bernie is open, Hillary is secretive. Bernie is genuine, Hillary is scripted. Bernie is consistent in his overall message, Hillary has no overall message of her own. Bernie is dedicated to his causes, Clinton will change position on any cause. Or, even worse, Hillary is simply what I pointed out in previous post titled Democrats Love George W. Bush:
While Hillary touts herself as a Progressive Democrat, her record, at best, makes her a Retroactive Democrat. Her initial positions are that of George W. Bush. She supported his main legacy positions. Her tendencies are Republican. When she answers the phone at 3 a.m., she will answer it as a Republican.
Bernie Sanders’ speech is genuine. I challenge anyone to read even part of it and doubt his veracity. The same cannot be said for Mrs. Clinton after an objective view of her record and her continuous changing of positions based upon political expediency. The most recent is regarding her view that asylum seekers from Central America should be deported to “send a message.”
Bernie Sanders’ speech should be regarded as one of the great speeches in American history. It is highly motivating. However, as I see the Democratic Party establishment line up against Senator Sanders, the speech comes across as poignant. It is disheartening to see something as passionate as Sanders’ beliefs be dismissed by, as he rightly called it, “the largest political machine” in the country.
Case in point is how Clinton and the establishment berate Sanders’ belief in universal health care in preference for a vague promise to build upon Obamacare to, in Clinton’s words, easily “get that last 10%” of uninsured Americans covered. However, that 10% is over 33 million Americans. And despite the fanfare of exchanges and subsidies, Obamacare overwhelmingly increased coverage simply by expanding Medicaid. That’s it. It’s also why Hillary Clinton has not given a plan (The Magic Unicorns of Clinton’s Platforms) on how she would specifically improve it. Obamacare is mainly Medicaid. In other words, Obamacare is mainly single payer, or, Obamacare is Berniecare.
Instead of any detailed or substative discussion, we are told we are not Sweden. Or England. Or France. Or Canada. Of course we are not; the US has much more wealth than those countries. And, 33 million more uninsured then them combined, let alone those who can’t afford their deductibles. (High Deductibles Make Insurance Useless). All of this is drowned out from the Democratic establishment that will tolerate no discourse towards Obamacare.
Relative to the current political scene, Bernie’s speech is a refreshing dose of honesty. Relative to Clinton making millions from her speeches, it is inspiring that Bernie donates all money from The Speech.
During his speech Sanders, speaking for the shrinking middle class rhetorically asked:
Don’t you hear us? Don’t you know what is going on in our lives? Don’t you know the worries we have for our kids, for our parents? Aren’t you listening to us?
No, Senator, they are not listening. They are beholden to the donor class. They are beholden to the establishment. The only tool typical Americans have left is their vote.
Before they do vote everyone should read Senator Sanders’ speech. Everyone should at least be exposed to it before casting their ballot.
I hope they consider that Senator Bernie Sanders was willing to fight for 8.5 hours for something he believed in. Imagine what he can do if given 4 years.
Thank you for reading and sharing. Be sure to click the hyperlinks. ~ Chris Childers