Bernie Sanders’ petition to President Obama reeks of deficit reduction hysteria, which is just a damned right-wing, Hooverish sickness that will brutalize the common people of this country until it is stamped out. He titles the petition “Shared Sacrifice” ferchrissake, and explicitly wants to “go forward on deficit reduction.”

Where is a Democrat who, as any Keynesian economist would recommend, supports going _backward_ on deficit reduction? Where is a Democrat who supports prosperity through deficit expansion with the U.S. suffering 9% unemployment and 16.5% underemployment? These comments by Sanders are brutal to the unemployed and poor besides being economically speaking insane (emphasis added):

“I’m trying to rally public opinion and put pressure on the White House to say that the American people want shared sacrifice,” he said. …

“It is totally immoral and bad economics to do what the Republicans want, and that is to go forward with deficit reduction on the backs of the elderly, the sick and children,” Sanders said. “What they are saying is, that’s the only way that we can go forward on deficit reduction. We do not want to ask the wealthiest people or corporations for one single penny.”

But Bernie, we shouldn’t be going forward on deficit reduction. Not now, not when the economy needs a great deal of stimulus. Out-dated, disproven Calvinist classical economics be damned, screw sacrifice! Why can’t at least one Democrat on the left be for economic recovery and prosperity, which common sense and the best economists tell us happens now only if the government increases spending overall during this still deep recession.

And worse, Bernie’s belief in deficit reduction is apparently shared by the Democrats’ entire Progressive Caucus. Raul Grijalva says (emphasis added):

“We feel the discussions have been skewed up to this point … and not included the whole spectrum” of possibilities to reduce the deficit, Grijalva told reporters on Thursday morning.

But Raul, we must not reduce the deficit, so we don’t need your whole spectrum. The deficit’s a paper problem at this point (and perhaps indefinitely), while the _real_ problem that deficit cutting will make worse is unemployment and underemployment. 9% ain’t high enough for you? And you’re the Democratic Party’s ‘left’?

When even the Democratic Party left flank talks of shared sacrifice and deficit reduction, what’s the use of the party? Must we all be faithful regurgitators of Pete Peterson memes, does he donate that much money to our political system? And we’ve got a helluva nice alternative meme just sitting there, shared prosperity, but no money behind it.