That huge sigh of relief you heard, followed by cheering for Joe Biden, that came from the establishment. Whew! We’ve been saved from Bernie Sanders and socialism. That was a close call! Thank goodness the danger has passed. We can get back to business as usual.
Well, good for Joe Biden, I like him. But this Democratic primary is not over until it’s over. The contest has narrowed, and it’s about even. I have some questions.
I’m looking at Andrew Yang’s book, “The War On Normal People.” Remember Normal People? The folks Yang was speaking about, the ones Elizabeth Warren was speaking for? The ones Bernie Sanders is still speaking to?
A blurb at the top front cover of Yang’s book:
“Andrew Yang highlights the urgent need to rewrite America’s social contract.” — Alec Ross
Like Andrew Yang, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren have been thinking about the social contract, and talking about it.
But I wonder about Joe Biden, with whom the establishment feels so comfortable. What does Joe think about the social contract? Does he think about it at all?
Subtitle at the bottom of Yang’s front cover:
“The Truth About America’s Disappearing Jobs and Why Universal Basic Income Is Our Future”
We know Andrew Yang proposes a $1,000-a-month payment to every American.
We know Bernie and Elizabeth propose Medicare for all. And taxing the rich. Fighting powerful corporate interests and corruption. And lots of free education, preschool to college.
What exactly is Joe Biden’s concept of universal healthcare? Is it high-deductible private insurance for everyone who wants to buy it? Or low-coverage insurance and high co-pays for everyone lucky enough to have a job with benefits? I guess that would be close to universal. How much would you pay to get tested for coronavirus?￼
What about taxation? Education? I’m a little fuzzy about the details of what Joe would do for Yang’s Normal People.
Young and left out
Those younger people, so enthusiastic about Bernie Sanders. So far, they’ve failed to vote in record numbers. Just what you’d expect from young voters. Maybe Joe Biden can win without them.
The disillusioned young people, seemingly left out of the American Dream. Living with their parents, working gigs, not careers, weighed down with debt they may never be able to pay off. They can’t buy a house, or maybe even a car.
Those young folks, voters or nonvoters, are they included in the social contract? Does Joe Biden have something to say to them?
Middle-aged and desperate
What about middle-aged voters in fly-over country? More than a few of them are out-sourced, unnecessary, and all too often, desperate. Maybe Joe Biden can win without them.
For desperate middle-aged Americans, their life expectancy is shrinking. They often struggle with unemployment, poverty, divorce, alcoholism, opioids, smoking, and sometimes suicide. Are they included in the social contract? Does Joe Biden have anything to say to them?
Choices to make before we sleep
I’m torn between fear that a Bernie Sanders-Donald Trump election might tear our country asunder. And on the other hand, fear that a Joe Biden-Donald Trump election might take our county completely away from Normal People, and turn it over to the rich and powerful, forever.
I wonder about Bernie Sanders. Why does Bernie comfort the afflicted in our society, and afflict the comfortable￼? Why are the comfortable, the wealthy and the powerful scared to death of a Bernie Sanders presidency? What are they afraid of, paying higher taxes?￼
And I wonder about Joe Biden. Why does Joe give such relief and comfort to the already comfortable, the wealthy and the powerful? And what about the young, the poor, the left-out, the sick? Will they receive any comfort or relief in a Joe Biden presidency?
Is Joe Biden on the side of Mike Bloomberg and the billionaires? Or is he on the side of Andrew Yang and Normal People? Would it be possible to be on both sides at the same time?
Far as I know, Andrew Yang has not endorsed either Joe or Bernie. If he would side with one or the other, it might ease my mind. What do you think?
— John Hayden