Bernie Sanders Knocks Economic Illiteracy Out of the Park

Updated: May 23, 2019

The tweet that inspired the article:

The Point:

Bernie Sanders is taking a free market pay scale, based on revenue created in the MLB, and using that to argue that we can obviously afford to pay teachers the money they deserve. It's deceptive, dishonest, slight-of-hand, and right up his alley.

Teachers deserve to get paid more. There aren't many people that would argue against that, but why compare their pay to that of major league baseball players?

The economic point to be made here is that baseball players are paid so much money because people are willing to freely give their money to watch them perform. There are less than 200 people that make the kind of money BS is talking about in this situation. Regardless, that salary is a direct representation of the monetary value those players create. Millions of people tune-in to watch MLB on a regular basis, coupled with millions more that pay big money to attend the games.

Actually, isn't this exactly what Bernie Sanders and those pushing Democratic Socialism are arguing for on a daily basis? Would you rather the MLB bring in billions of dollars, and then pay players closer to what a teacher makes? Well that would be pure greed on the part of the teams. We've finally got a business that pays its valuable employees closer to the revenues brought in by the industry.

Back to the teachers.

The unfortunate part of the equation is painfully obvious. No one is ordering special TV programming or attending live events to watch a teacher in action for seven hours a day.

Teachers are paid by the states. Which means they are not paid based on the value they create, they are paid based on time-served. Not to mention the other ridiculous part of the equation- The fact that there are 3,200,000 teachers, and 700 professional baseball players.

Assuming the differences in the way teachers are paid vs. the way MLB players are paid is ridiculously obvious, I'll leave that point alone.

The real question is, what economic point is BS trying to make by saying that "If we can afford to pay baseball players hundreds of millions, we can afford to pay teachers what they deserve?" Where are all my liberal friends that scream, "Straw-man! Straw-man!" every time an analogy is made?

Here's Bernie Sanders' entire political game-plan laid out in bullet points so it's easier to understand:

  • Trigger an emotional reaction so logic and rationality go out the window.

Why do you care?

If a politician needs to use deceptive tactics to get their point of view across, you know there's a problem with their point of view. The situation teachers face is complicated, and it deserves an equally complicated answer because that's the only one that has a shot at being a long-term viable solution. The case to raise teacher's salaries should be so obvious that you don't have to draw on completely ridiculous analogies to prove the point.

At the end of the day this is just another talking point to push for higher taxes, and a bigger government. How about we start by eliminating the DOE and spreading that money out between the teachers?

Just so we all know- The US DOE Discretionary Budget sits around $70 Billion. Even if we don't count the mandatory budget (and all of the other expenditures), that discretionary budget divided out would equal a $21,875 pay raise for all 3.2 million teachers. For most, that's a 50% pay bump, or more.

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