Bernie Sanders' New Deal: ending involuntary unemployment with guaranteed $15/hour infrastructure jobs

Work that is by definition not worth paying for is worse than useless; it will be a drag on the general economy.

Politicians will dream up vanity projects that screw up traffic and drive up the cost of materials for everyone else.

Just giving people money is the easiest solution.

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Yeah, this is an announcement that they’re working on a plan for a bill, seems like a way to step on Booker’s incrementalist bill without really having a lot of details figured out.

It’s not clear what would happen to a worker who violated the terms of employment. The plan suggests creating a Division of Progress Investigation to “take disciplinary action if needed,” leaving authority to the head of the Labor Department. Aides to Sanders stress that the policy details remain in their initial stages.

Does it have to? I’ll admit to not reading up on it but it would be totally possible to have a bidding process where these guarantees of levels of compensation for workers and limits on outsourcing were part of the proposal. Then it would be those same American industries and companies getting the public money and distributing it in an enforced trickle-down to their workers.


Giving people money doesn’t prevent them from being hit by falling concrete while driving under decaying overpasses.


Hard to argue with that.


I’ve imagined a work-project like this since Obama first became prez, use that positivity and momentum he had going into the presidency, get people working on the roads, buildings, infrastructure, etc, show the real progressive side of our country! And artwork! Like all those gorgeous train station murals, everyone can get in on this, the country would be beautiful AND updated! Which of course didnt happen. It’s too perfect. Like why make the perfect long-lasting item when you can make money (you not THEM) from a half ass one that always breaks? People will constantly need to replace product X and although we could make it amazing and perfect, theres not nearly enough profit in making one thats shoddy that folks will have to replace every so often.

Maybe not the best analogy but too many money-makers will not let this happen. I’d love of course to be proven wrong.


You understand that it’s not up to Bernie or any other Dem whether bills get a vote, right?

  1. I agree we should look into updating our infrastructure. Too much of it is crumbling, and it benefits our economy.

  2. I could be wrong, but I figured the average skilled construction worker made more than $15. Especially those in unions.

  3. If we need more skilled construction labor (remember in the 30s you might just have 100 guys digging with shovels or doing other manual labor that now requires special tools or equipment that does the work of 10+ men), we are going to need to increase our trade schools.


Of course it doesn’t have to. I was simply pointing out how silly the argument about undercutting industries is.


True, but they won’t need only construction workers for this. They’ll need management and coordinators to ensure tradespeople and materials get where they’re needed at the right time. They’ll need people to process payrolls and HR issues. A plan like this will create many more opportunities than just physical work… but if more construction workers are needed, people can be retrained, which means they will need to hire instructors as well…

This is brilliant, and I love it. I’d even sign up to work with it myself. Viva the New New Deal!


I suppose so.

As proof I offer up my ability to find employment at non-government-forced terms.

He was fired a while back after blaming poor performance on black NFL players for taking a knee during the national anthem to protest shootings of black men by police.


I wanted to clarify.


Neither was the New Deal. Any complaints about that half of what someone else said?

Do you support this proposal? Not clear from your response.

Way to misuse the term dogwhistle.

oopsie, right?


I dropped out and loved communally with like minded hippies and punks. I learned that I should have damn well stayed there.
(ETA: I’m leaving the typo right where it is)


And if the works built by a program like this are as beautiful as most of those Art Deco WPA projects were, I’m all for it!


I think the point that @Mark_McDermott was making is that there’s always ideas and never actual written-up bills.


As an outsider, I thought that in the US senate and congress it was normal for different people to come up with different versions of bills and then haggle over them until they get a bill that they can agree on. As opposed to “stepping on” Booker’s bill, might this not be seen as working alongside Booker’s bill?

I don’t know, maybe the idea that different people advancing similar ideas might one day find out a way to go forward together is fairy dust and unicorns right now.


Both Booker and Sanders are in the Senate, and their bills differ less in detail (in that Booker’s is a lot closer to a fleshed-out bill, while Sanders’ is extremely vague) than in scope: Booker is calling for test projects in particular areas, while Sanders seems to be calling for nation-wide roll out and all sorts of administrative infrastructure to implement it.