Should the NSA Keep Tabs on Bernie Sanders?

Can it be a conspiracy when it's out in the open?


That's the question Cliff Kincaid asks at AIM about America's official Socialist senator.

“Is NSA spying on Congress?” asks Sanders, who has joined with Republican Senator Rand Paul to demand restrictions on various NSA programs. The senator claims to be “independent,” but is considered a member of the Senate Democratic Caucus.


If any member of Congress should be under surveillance, it would be Sanders. During the 1980s he collaborated with Soviet and East German “peace committees” to stop President Reagan’s deployment of nuclear missiles in Europe, in order to counter a massive Soviet strategic nuclear advantage. Sanders had openly joined the Soviets’ “nuclear freeze” campaign to undercut Reagan’s military build-up.

The name of Bernie Sanders, then identified as former mayor of Burlington, Vermont, even shows up on a list of speakers at a 1989 U.S. Peace Council event to “end the Cold War” and “fund human needs.” Other speakers at the U.S. Peace Council event included Rep. John Conyers, a Democrat from Michigan; Gunther Dreifahl of the East German “Peace Council;” Jesse Jackson aide Jack O’Dell; and PLO official Zehdi Terzi.

Congressional hearings in 1982 demonstrated that the U.S. Peace Council was affiliated with the Soviet-controlled World Peace Council and run by the Communist Party USA. It was part of what the FBI called the Soviet “active measures” apparatus, designed to discredit the U.S. and support communist objectives.

Fortunately or unfortunately, we've gotten past the point where international contacts matter anymore. The Soviet Union has collapsed. The left functions as its own domestic conspiracy without need for recourse to some Motherland of Socialism. And it's barely bothering to conspire.

Can Obama Inc. be called a conspiracy when its actions are out in the open? The modern left debates terminology. It doesn't like being called Communist or Socialist, but it openly embraces their policies.

Elizabeth Warren's rhetoric is often indistinguishable from Communist rhetoric. You just aren't supposed to call her that. Obama doubled down on "You didn't build that" while laughingly dismissing the idea that he's a Socialist.

It's not a question of concealing agendas anymore, but branding. Socialist and Communist are bad brands. Progressive is a better brand. Even better are "Smart". Smart has become the default brand for any radical left-wing policy the way that "investing" is the new term for redistribution.

The left has come out of the closet. It just insists on being called by another name.