I could not be more upset of "self-made" billionaires, specifically Howard Schultz, former Starbucks CEO. He is entering into the political fray with misconceptions and misinformation. Given the goodwill many have had of him because he treated his employees better than most, it could become dangerous.
Schultz believes the Democratic Party has gone too far left because they want Medicare for all and Pay-It-Forward college education and more Progressive policies Americans want. This morning I wrote the piece "Centrists have nothing to offer the poor and dwindling middle-class" stating the following.
When Schultz disparaged Medicare for All as if it was some extreme left idea, he disparaged every industrialized country we are allied with whose citizens are healthier than us on average. When he demeans pay-it-forward tuition, he demeans America insinuating that while countries from Germany to Brazil to Trinidad & Tobago can educate their own, we are impotent and incapable of ensuring extended education for all our citizens.
Then I received two subsequent emails from Tim Danahey, a member of my Coffee Party cohort.
Mussolini only had a 22% base in Italy. However, the opposing 78% was divided among a half-dozen political movements. He appeared more powerful than he really was so King Leopold of Italy appointed Mussolini to be administrative head of the nation. From there, it was easy to sideline the King and take power.
Schulz's candidacy divides our nation and further-empowers Trump's 35% base. If Schulz wants to run for President, he should do it from within the Democratic or Republican party. To effectively change the system in our beautifully-designed country, do it from within the system. In a dictatorship, run as an outsider.
It was clear he had a lot more to say. This time he threw down the facts.
This Howard Schultz corporate candidacy has me riled.
Schultz says we can't afford to have Medicare-for-All because the country is $21 trillion in debt and socialized medicine is too expensive. Wrong.
In 2017, the United States spent 17% of its $19.4 trillion GDP on health care. That's $3.3 trillion.
In 2017, the OECD countries (developed countries) spent, on average, 10.5% of their GDPs on healthcare. They achieved better outcomes (higher quality on average).
If the United States spent 10.5% on healthcare (and achieved higher outcomes), we would have spent $2.0 trillion on healthcare.
So, if the United States had socialized healthcare like the others, we would save $1.3 trillion per year. That's a savings of $3,940 for every man, woman, and child in the US per year. In other words, $15,750 saved for every family of four. That's $1,313 per month per family or $328/month per person saved.
Bernie Sanders was asked during the 2016 how we were going to pay for this. He couldn't say "raise taxes" because it would have doomed his candidacy. He should have said, "Continue paying your insurance company but pay them less." We could have given the insurance companies a mark-up to administer the system. This can work. Howard Schultz, stop misleading us.
Thanks for letting me have these five-minute vents.
Tim is absolutely correct. The problem is we have a derelict media. They allow Billionaires, the Plutocracy to misinform and lie to us on a regular basis. It is imperative that we use other techniques to get to the voters so that they stop voting against their interest. They must understand that most of the seemingly benevolent "self-made billionaires forgot what it is like to be real middle-class Americans. We must remind them by all means necessary.
As billionaires like Schultz continue to campaign on the pretense that they are "self-made," we must use that opportunity to point out that ALL billionaires accumulated capital on the backs of others. We must make their false strength the weakness that it is. There is no self-made billionaire.
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