No Obamacare: Whole Foods CEO John Mackey plans to open private office for employees to get free healthcare

Glenn has had a bit of a love-hate relationship with Whole Foods over the years (let us not forget the story about the torture of lobsters during transport), but he has always had a tremendous amount of respect for Whole Foods co-CEO, John Mackey.

Mackey is a libertarian at heart, who has managed to gain favor with the left and the right because of his tremendous business sense and the company he has created. Glenn has been talking a lot about the “Golden Circle” lately – the idea that it is the ‘why’ not the ‘what’ that matters most in business. Mackey’s latest book, Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business, tackles these themes and explains the importance of capitalism and the entrepreneurial spirit.

On radio this morning, Glenn interviewed Mackey about his latest book and the business model that has made Whole Foods so successful. View the full transcript of the interview below:

GLENN: Hi, John. How are you?

MACKEY: Very well. How are you doing?

GLENN: I'm really good. I'm thrilled to see someone stand up for capitalism, but a different kind of capitalism that I think is what we all want capitalism to be. Too many people are not doing it.

MACKEY: Yes. Capitalism is the greatest creation humanity has done for social cooperation. It has lifted humanity out of the dirt. In statistics we discovered when we researching the book, about 200 years ago when capitalism was created, 85% of the people alive lived on $1 a day. Toady, that number is 16%. Still too high, but capitalism is wiping out poverty across the world. 200 years ago illiteracy rates were 90%. Today, they are down to about 14%. 200 years ago the average lifespan was 30. Today it is 68 across the world, 78 in the States, almost 82 in Japan. This is due to business. This is due to capitalism. And it doesn’t get credit for it. Most of the time, business is portrayed by its enemies as selfish and greedy and exploitative, yet it's the greatest value creator in the world.

GLENN: I've been reading a lot of 19th century history, especially around Edison, and Tesla, and GE. There is – there was back then, and there is now, the greedy capitalist that doesn't care, and then there's the capitalist that does care, the Westinghouse of the day that is trying to do the right thing and sees his product as something with value, sells it at a proper price but is trying to create something of real value and holds to his principles. When that happens you have happy employees; you have happy customers; and you create value all around. However, even in today's world, look at what the symbol of the person that represents capitalism, at least if you're a conservative, I guess would be Donald Trump. That doesn't seem like happiness at all. The ‘why’ is: my name is in gold and I've got a whole bunch of money in the end.

MACKEY: Business is judged, unfortunately, by its worst actors. There are greedy doctors too, and there are plenty of greedy lawyers. There are bad actors in every profession. Business tends to be judged by its very worst practitioners: the Enrons, the World Coms, and the Bernie Madoff's. And they are the ones that capture the media's attention, and it's extended to all of business. Most business people though are ethical, and they create value for their customers, for their employees, for their suppliers, their investors, and the communities they are a part of. Business is fundamentally about voluntary exchange for mutual benefit. And it shouldn't be judged by its worst actors any more than all doctors should be slandered because a doctor misdiagnosed a disease or took out the wrong kidney. That doesn’t mean all are bad. That means there are a few that are. I think that is the same way in business.

GLENN: The name of the book by John Mackey is Conscious Capitalism. Tell me the difference – you talk about it here – but can you sum it up – the difference between what you're talking about and corporate social responsibility.

MACKEY: The biggest difference between corporate social responsibility and conscious capitalism is corporate social responsibility takes the standard sort of profit centric model of the purpose of business is to maximize profits, and then it grafts on to what it calls corporate social responsibility, which is usually a department that reports through public relations and marketing in an attempt to help the brand image of the company. It may just be skin deep. It may not have any authenticity to it, whereas conscious capitalism starts with the principle of creating a business having a higher purpose than just making money and creating value for all of its interdependent state holders, which includes the community. So creating value for stake holders including the community is at the essence of the conscious business or the conscious capitalistic company. It’s not an add on. It's not grafted on. It's why the business exists in the first place. That's the biggest difference.

GLENN: I have – the Ayn Rand people have a problem with me, and I don’t have a problem with the Ayn Rand people, they have a problem with me because I believe in charity, and I believe in doing good. But I don't believe in forcing anybody. That’s why I have a problem with a lot of our tax structure. You're forcing me to do it, and it doesn't change my heart in a good way. It changes my heart in a bad way. I lived in New York for a while. You eventually end up saying, ‘Why isn’t the city taking care of this?’ instead of you doing it. You know the Ayn Rand philosophy is much of just the greed is good and go make it because you want to do it, and you want to build something, and it only belongs to you. Where I think if you are doing part of that – if you are following that, you are following your passion. Your passion is because you want to it but also because it is doing something good. That's where the real magic happens.

MACKEY: I tend to – on this particular discussion I happen to side with you on it.

GLENN: Hang on just a second.

MACKEY: A lot of the Ayn Rand people don’t like me either for a similar reason. But I admire Ayn Rand’s novels a great deal.

GLENN: So do I.

MACKEY: They are wonderful novels and had an impact on me particularly when I was younger. But I think she is fundamentally wrong when she makes a distinction between the kind of a straw man that people are completely self-interested or they're altruistic. It seems obvious to me that humans are both self-interested but we also care about others. We also have ideals. We also want to do good. And so I don't see it. She's fundamentally, I think, wrong. Glenn when you consider the fact that Gallup shows that the overall approval rating of big business in America is down to 19%. That means 81% do not approve of it. So I think when you say it’s all about selfishness and greed then you have basically fallen into the – you’re reinforcing the critics perspective and it’s harming the overall brand image and reputation of business in the world. Business is about creating value for other people and voluntary exchange. It is the greatest value creator in the world. It's what's making all the different. But if we are going to let it be portrayed as fundamentally selfish and greedy, we’ve already lost the argument before we even begin it.

GLENN: There's no problem with making money. If you are in the banking or Wall Street industry, at the end of your days you can say, ‘I helped create business. I helped lift people out of poverty.’ But the creation of money in and of itself – money is a tool. It’s not a destination. It's a vehicle.

MACKEY: I agree.

GLENN: And too many people don't understand that.

MACKEY: The money is produced through exchange, through voluntary exchange. You create value. You create goods and services that other people voluntarily buy because it is in your best interest to do so. You usually have competition for their money and their time, and their energy. If you're producing a profit, it’s because – and I'm not saying there's not crooked businesses out there, but they are rare and not the most common ones. If you produce money it’s because you've created value for others and they've exchanged with you. Your profit is justly earned through the creation of value for other people.

GLENN: I will tell you John, when I first saw Whole Foods, I didn't go into your store. I think I rolled my eyes when I first saw your store because I thought, ‘oh is this the new marketing thing now? Oh look at us.’ I think that’s the problem with business now. We've been marketed to our whole life. If you were born past 1950, you've been marketed to your entire life. And so you can spot a fraud now really pretty fast. And everybody seems to be a fraud, and I think that the media, and way we spin stories and everything else tends to make everybody a fraud. Over time all I had to do was walk into one of your stores you can feel the difference. You can tell when a company means it and when it's just a show. And that is extraordinarily difficult to do.

MACKEY: Well, thank you. I do think that the world and people today, you are absolutely right, we have been marketed to. We’ve been spun to. It's one of the reasons we have trouble liking most of our politicians. We don't feel like they're telling us the truth. We always feel like they are telling us, they are spinning to us, they are deceiving us. Politicians do that. Advertisers do it. There's a strong desire for basic authenticity, for basic integrity, and truth telling. And we want that in our products. We want that in with the businesses we trade with. We like to have it with our politicians. I do think Whole Foods is very authentic. I appreciate you for recognizing that.

GLENN: I've got two issues, if you don’t mind me having a private session with you here for a second. I have two issues. One, I refuse to dump my employees into government healthcare because it stinks, and I don't even want to dump my employees into cheaper healthcare. I currently pay 100% of the deductible. They don't put anything in it. We have the best healthcare money can buy. But it is increasingly becoming more and more difficult for me to do that. I want to think out of the box. I've told my employees if it comes down to it, if I can I'll build my own damn hospital and hire our own doctors. But we have to think out of the box. A, do you know anything on the horizon that is good for healthcare that is reasonable. Two, how do you move a company and make sure that it stays on that course as it grows? Six years ago we had six employees, and I think we're approaching 300 employees now and it's extraordinarily difficult especially in a fast growth business to hold that culture down. How do you do it?

MACKEY: It's very challenging. And it's good you're asking these questions. First on that – we’ll get back to the culture in a second – I applaud you for your idea. It’s interesting you say that about the hospital. Whole Foods is going to do a similar experiment. We’re going to open a doctor's office in L.A. that will be free for all of our team members and their dependants.

GLENN: That is exactly what we are thinking.

MACKEY: And if that works, we're going to spread it to other cities around the country, where we have our stores.

GLENN: May we watch and learn from you?

MACKEY: Sure, we believe that 80% of what we spend on healthcare in America are for diseases like heart disease and stroke and obesity, type 2 diabetes, cancer, and autoimmune diseases, and they really correlate very closely with what people eat, and the type of lifestyle we live. So the best way we can cut healthcare costs and help our people to be healthier is to help educate them and teach them. We can't force them, and we don’t want to force them. But we want to help educate them to eat healthier, and have a healthier lifestyle. We think that will be beneficial to people's health, and cut down on healthcare expenses so it's a win win. We think we need to do that best with doctors. With doctors that people trust and they know, and will tend to all of their medical needs while we're trying to educate them. We're going to do that experiment. I’m pretty excited about it. We’ve got our office located. We've hired our doctor. We'll be getting going on that in a month or two.

GLENN: Good for you. Good for you.

MACKEY: So good luck with your hospital.

GLENN: Thank you very much. Well, we’ll probably start with one doctor in an office.

MACKEY: Your second question was about culture, and how do you maintain that culture as you rapidly grow. I think it's important that you create what your own higher purpose is for your organization, and make sure everybody knows that. You’re the entrepreneur, so you may have a vision but you've got to be able to communicate what that vision is and get other people to understand it and share it. And then you need to consciously begin to create the culture that will reinforce that purpose. Decide the cultural traits that your organization needs to have. We write about that in the book. Things like empowerment and love and care trying to manage without fear are very important culture traits, and so you have to pay attention to that because if you don't your culture will get created anyway, and it may not be the way you want it to be in terms of the goals you want to see your organization achieve. It's good that you're becoming more conscious about culture, and if you're conscious about it you can act in ways to help your organization flourish.

GLENN: John, it's a real pleasure to talk to you. And I applaud you for what your company has done. I applaud your stance on capitalism, and applaud you for your book on trying to awaken more entrepreneurs and more capitalists. Capitalism has to be saved and the only way to do it is to actually start to highlight those people who are doing it right and proving that it is the greatest system for compassion in the history of the world.

MACKEY: Thank you Glenn. Interesting statistic that I don't know if your listeners know about it, but Of course the United States for the longest time had the highest degree of economic freedom in the world. In as short a period of time ago as 2000, we ranked number 3 behind Hong Kong and Singapore. Now in 2012 we fell down to number 18.

GLENN: Geez.

MACKEY: And as our economic freedom declines so does our prosperity – 7.9 percent unemployment. In the last decade we've actually seen for the first time in American history, the disposable income per capita actually declined. It’s the first time over a ten year period. We're losing our economic freedom and with it our prosperity. I think the first step is for business to begin to defend itself in a more cogent way, and that starts with purpose, and stake holder philosophy, and those are the principles we outline in the book.

GLENN: John. Thank you very much. I appreciate it.

MACKEY: Thank you so much, Glenn.

GLENN: God bless. Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the heroic spirit of business. A must, must read by John Mackey. Available everywhere. Finally somebody with some clout is doing it.

It's time for our April 29, 2019 edition of our Candidate Power Rankings. We get to add two new candidates, write about a bunch of people that have little to no chance of winning, and thank the heavens we are one day closer to the end of all of this.

In case you're new here, read our explainer about how all of this works:

The 2020 Democratic primary power rankings are an attempt to make sense out of the chaos of the largest field of candidates in global history.

Each candidate gets a unique score in at least thirty categories, measuring data like polling, prediction markets, fundraising, fundamentals, media coverage, and more. The result is a candidate score between 0-100. These numbers will change from week to week as the race changes.

The power rankings are less a prediction on who will win the nomination, and more a snapshot of the state of the race at any given time. However, early on, the model gives more weight to fundamentals and potentials, and later will begin to prioritize polling and realities on the ground.

These power rankings include only announced candidates. So, when you say "WAIT!! WHERE'S XXXXX????" Read the earlier sentence again.

If you're like me, when you read power rankings about sports, you've already skipped ahead to the list. So, here we go.

See previous editions here.

20. Wayne Messam: 13.4 (Last week: 18th / 13.4)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

A former staffer of Wayne Messam is accusing his wife of hoarding the campaign's money.

First, how does this guy have "former" staffers? He's been running for approximately twelve minutes.

Second, he finished dead last in the field in fundraising with $44,000 for the quarter. Perhaps hoarding whatever money the campaign has is not the worst idea.

His best shot at the nomination continues to be something out of the series "Designated Survivor."

Other headlines:

19. Marianne Williamson: 17.1 (Last week: 17th / 17.1)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Marianne Williamson would like you to pay for the sins of someone else's great, great, great grandparents. Lucky you!

Williamson is on the reparations train like most of the field, trying to separate herself from the pack by sheer monetary force.

How much of your cash does she want to spend? "Anything less than $100 billion is an insult." This is what I told the guy who showed up to buy my 1989 Ford Tempo. It didn't work then either.

Other headlines:

18. John Delaney: 19.7 (Last week: 15th / 20.3)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Good news: John Delaney brought in $12.1 million in the first quarter, enough for fifth in the entire Democratic field!

Bad news: 97% of the money came from his own bank account.

Other headlines:

17. Eric Swalwell: 20.2 (Last week: 16th / 20.2)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

The Eric Swalwell formula:

  • Identify news cycle
  • Identify typical left-wing reaction
  • Add steroids

Democrats said there was obstruction in the Mueller report. Swalwell said there “certainly" was collusion.

Democrats said surveillance of the Trump campaign was no big deal. Swalwell said there was no need to apologize even if it was.

Democrats said William Barr mishandled the release of the Mueller report. Swalwell said he must resign.

Democrats say they want gun restrictions. Swalwell wants them all melted down and the liquid metal to be poured on the heads of NRA members. (Probably.)

16. Seth Moulton: 20.6 (NEW)

Who is Seth Moulton?

No, I'm asking.

Moulton falls into the category of congressman looking to raise his profile and make his future fundraising easier— not someone who is actually competing for the presidency.

He tried to block Nancy Pelosi as speaker, so whatever help he could get from the establishment is as dry as Pelosi's eyes when the Botox holds them open for too long.

Moulton is a veteran, and his military service alone is enough to tell you that he's done more with his life than I'll ever do with mine. But it's hard to see the road to the White House for a complete unknown in a large field of knowns.

Don't take my word for it, instead read this depressing story that he's actually telling people on purpose:

"I said, you know, part of my job is take tough questions," Moulton told the gathered business and political leaders. "You can ask even really difficult questions. And there was still silence. And then finally, someone in the way back of the room raised her hand, and she said, 'Who are you?' "

Yeah. Who are you?

15. Tim Ryan: 21.6 (Last week: 14th / 20.7)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

When you're talking to less than sixteen people in Iowa one week after your launch, you don't have too much to be excited about.

Ryan did get an interview on CNN, where he also talked to less than sixteen people.

He discussed his passion for the Dave Matthews Band, solidifying a key constituency in the year 1995.

Other headlines:

14. Tulsi Gabbard: 25.2 (Last week: 14th / 25.9)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Tulsi Gabbard torched Kamala Harris in fundraising!!!!! (Among Indian-American donors.)

No word on who won the coveted handi-capable gender-neutral sodium-sensitive sub-demographic.

She received a mostly false rating for her attack on the Trump administration regarding its new policy on pork inspections, a topic not exactly leading the news cycle. Being from Hawaii, the state which leads the nation in Spam consumption, she was probably surprised when this didn't go mega viral.

Other headlines:

13. Andrew Yang: 27.2 (Last week: 12th / 27.1)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Yang has a few go-to lines when he's on the campaign trail, such as: "The opposite of Donald Trump is an Asian man who likes math." Another is apparently the Jeb-esque "Chant my name! Chant my name!"

Yang continues to be one of the more interesting candidates in this race, essentially running a remix of the "One Tough Nerd" formula that worked for Michigan Governor Rick Snyder.

I highly recommend listening to his interview with Ben Shapiro, where Yang earns respect as the only Democratic presidential candidate in modern history to actually show up to a challenging and in-depth interview with a knowledgeable conservative.

But hidden in the Shapiro interview is the nasty little secret of the Yang campaign. His policy prescriptions, while still very liberal, come off as far too sane for him to compete in this Stalin look-alike contest.

Other headlines:

12. Jay Inslee: 30.4 (Last week: 11th / 30.4)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

If you read the Inslee candidate profile, I said he was running a one-issue climate campaign. This week, he called for a climate change-only debate, and blamed Donald Trump for flooding in Iowa.

He also may sign the nation's first "human composting" legalization bill. He can start by composting his presidential campaign.

Other headlines:

11. John Hickenlooper: 32.2 (Last week: 10th / 32.0)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

John Hickenlooper was sick of being asked if he would put a woman on the ticket, in the 0.032% chance he actually won the nomination.

So he wondered why the female candidates weren't being asked if they would name a male VP if they won?

Seems like a logical question, but only someone who is high on tailpipe fumes would think it was okay to ask in a Democratic primary. Hickenlooper would be better served by just transitioning to a female and demanding other candidates are asked why they don't have a transgendered VP.

Other headlines:

10. Julian Castro: 35.7 (Last week: 9th / 36.2)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Lowering expectations is a useful strategy when your wife asks you to put together an Ikea end table, or when you've successfully convinced Charlize Theron to come home with you. But is it a successful campaign strategy?

Julian Castro is about to find out. He thinks the fact that everyone thinks he's crashing and burning on the campaign trail so far is an "advantage." Perhaps he can take the rest of the field by surprise on Super Tuesday when they finally realize he's actually running.

Other headlines:

9. Kirsten Gillibrand: 38.1 (Last week: 8th / 37.8)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Gillibrand wants you to know that the reason her campaign has been such a miserable failure so far, is because she called for a certain senator to step down. The problem might also be that another certain senator isn't a good presidential candidate.

She also spent the week arm wrestling, and dancing at a gay bar called Blazing Saddle. In this time of division, one thing we can all agree on: Blazing Saddle is a really solid name for a gay bar.

Other headlines:

8. Amy Klobuchar: 45.1 (Last week: 7th / 45.5)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Klobuchar is attempting a run in the moderate wing of the Democratic primary, which would be a better idea if such a wing existed.

She hasn't committed to impeaching Donald Trump and has actually voted to confirm over half of his judicial nominees. My guess is this will not be ignored by her primary opponents.

She also wants to resolve an ongoing TPS issue, which I assume means going by Peter Gibbons' desk every morning and making sure he got the memo about the new cover sheets.

Other headlines:

7. Elizabeth Warren: 45.3 (Last week: 6th / 46.0)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Elizabeth Warren is bad at everything she does while she's campaigning. I don't really even watch Game of Thrones, and the idea that Warren would write a story about how the show proves we need more powerful women makes me cringe.

Of course, more powerful people of all the 39,343 genders are welcome, but it's such a transparent attempt at jumping on the back of a pop-culture event to pander to female voters, it's sickening.

We can only hope that when she's watching Game of Thrones, she's gonna grab her a beer.

Other headlines:

6. Cory Booker: 54.9 (Last week: 5th / 55.5)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Booker is tied with Kamala Harris for the most missed Senate votes of the campaign so far. He gets criticized for this, but I think he should miss even more votes.

Booker is also pushing a national day off on Election Day—because the approximately six months of early voting allowed in every state just isn't enough.

Of course, making it easier to vote doesn't mean people are going to vote for Booker. So he's throwing trillions of dollars in bribes (my word, not his) to seal the deal.

Bookermania is in full effect, with 40 whole people showing up to his appearance in Nevada. Local press noted that the people were of "varying ages," an important distinction to most other crowds, which are entirely comprised of people with the same birthday.

Other headlines:

5. Robert Francis O’Rourke: 60.2 (Last week: 4th /62.6)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

Kirsten Gillibrand gave less than 2% of her income to charity. The good news is that she gave about seven times as much as Beto O'Rourke. Robert Francis, or Bob Frank, also happens to be one of the wealthiest candidates in the race. His late seventies father-in-law has been estimated to be worth as much as $20 billion, though the number is more likely to be a paltry $500 million.

He's made millions from a family company investing in fossil fuels and pharmaceutical stocks, underpaid his taxes for multiple years, and is suing the government to lower property taxes on a family-owned shopping center.

He's also all but disappeared. It's a long race, and you don't win a nomination in April of the year before election day. If he's being frugal and figuring out what he believes, it might be a good move.

But it's notable that all the "pretty boy" hype that Bob Frank owned going into this race has been handed over to Mayor Pete. Perhaps Beto is spending his time working on curbing the sweating, the hand gestures, and the issues with jumping on counters like a feline.

Other headlines:

4. Pete Buttigieg: 62.9 (Last week: 3rd / 62.9)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

When we first put candidates in tiers earlier this year, we broke everyone into five categories from "Front Runners" to "Eh, no." In the middle is a category called "Maybe, if everything goes right," and that's where we put Pete Buttigieg.

Well, everything has gone right so far. But Mayor Pete will be interested to learn that the other 19 candidates in this race are not going to hand him this nomination. Eventually, they will start saying negative things about him (they've started the opposition research process already), and it will be interesting to see how Petey deals with the pressure. We've already seen how it has affected Beto in a similar situation.

The media has spoken endlessly about the sexual orientation of Buttigieg, but not every Democratic activist is impressed. Barney Frank thinks the main reason he's getting this amount of attention is because he is gay. And for some, being a gay man just means you're a man, which isn't good enough.

When you base your vote on a candidate's genitals, things can get confusing.

Other headlines:

3. Kamala Harris: 68.6 (Last week: 1st / 69.1)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

There are a couple of ways to view the Harris candidacy so far.

#1 - Harris launched with much fanfare and an adoring media. She has since lost her momentum. Mayor Pete and former Mayor Bernie have the hype, and Kamala is fading.

#2 - Harris is playing the long game. She showed she can make an impact with her launch, but realizes that a media "win" ten months before an important primary means nothing. She's working behind the scenes and cleaning up with donations, prominent supporters, and loads of celebrities to execute an Obama style onslaught.

I tend to be in category 2, but I admit that's somewhat speculative. Harris seems to be well positioned to make a serious run, locking up more than double the amount of big Clinton and Obama fundraisers than any other candidate.

One interesting policy development for Harris that may hurt her in the primary is her lack of utter disgust for the nation of Israel. There's basically one acceptable position in a Democratic primary when it comes to Israel, which is that it's a racist and terrorist state, existing only to torture innocent Palestinians.

Certainly no one is going to mistake Harris for Donald Trump, but a paragraph like this is poison to the modern Democratic primary voter:

"Her support for Israel is central to who she is," Harris' campaign communications director, Lily Adams, told McClatchy. "She is firm in her belief that Israel has a right to exist and defend itself, including against rocket attacks from Gaza."

Just portraying the rocket attacks as "attacks" is controversial these days for Democrats, and claiming they are responses to attacks indicates you think the Jeeeewwwwwwwws aren't the ones responsible for the start of every hostility. Heresy!

Someone get Kamala a copy of the 'Protocols of the Elders of Zion' before she blows her chance to run the free world.

2. Bernie Sanders: 69.2 (Last week: 2nd / 68.3)

CANDIDATE PROFILE

If Bernie Sanders hates millionaires as much as he claims, he must hate the mirror. As a millionaire, it might surprise some that he donated only 1% to charity. But it shouldn't.

It's entirely consistent with Sandersism to avoid giving to private charity. Why would you? Sanders believes the government does everything better than the private sector. He should be giving his money to the government.

Of course, he doesn't. He takes the tax breaks from the evil Trump tax plan he derides. He spends his money on fabulous vacation homes. He believes in socialism for thee, not for me.

Yes, this is enough to convince the Cardi B's of the world, all but guaranteeing a lock on the rapper-and-former-stripper-that-drugged-and-stole-from-her-prostitution-clients demographic. But can that lack of consistency hold up in front of general election voters?

If Bernie reads this and would like a path to credibility, clear out your bank account and send it here:

Gifts to the United States
U.S. Department of the Treasury
Funds Management Branch
P.O. Box 1328
Parkersburg, WV 26106-1328


Other headlines:

1. Joseph Robinette Biden Jr.: 78.8 (NEW)

Joe has run for president 113 times during his illustrious career, successfully capturing the presidency in approximately zero of his campaigns.

However, when the eternally woke Barack Obama had a chance to elevate a person of color, woman, or anything from the rainbow colored QUILTBAG, he instead chose the oldest, straightest, whitest guy he could find, and our man Robinette was the beneficiary.

Biden has been through a lot, much of it of his own making. Forget about his plagiarism and propensity to get a nostril full of each passing females' hair, his dealings while vice president in both Ukraine and China are a major general election vulnerability— not to mention a legal vulnerability for his children. But hey, win the presidency and you can pardon everyone, right?

His supposed appeal to rust belt voters makes him, on paper, a great candidate to take on Trump. The Clinton loss hinged on about 40,000 voters changing their mind from Hillary to Donald in a few states—the exact areas where victory could possibly be secured by someone named "Middle Class Joe" (as he alone calls himself.)

No one loves Joe Biden more than Joe Biden, and there's a relatively convincing case for his candidacy. But we must remember this unquestionable truth: Joe Biden is not good at running for president.

He's a gaffe machine that churns out mistake after mistake, hoping only to have his flubs excused by his unending charisma. But, will that work without the use of his legendary groping abilities? Only time, and a few dozen unnamed women, will tell.

Also, yes. Robinette is really his middle name.

If only Karl Marx were alive today to see his wackiest ideas being completely paraded around. He would be so proud. I can see him now: Sprawled out on his hammock from REI, fiddling around for the last vegan potato chip in the bag as he binge-watches Academy Awards on his 70-inch smart TV. In between glances at his iPhone X (he's got a massive Twitter following), he sips Pepsi. In his Patagonia t-shirt and NIKE tennis shoes, he writes a line or two about "oppression" and "the have-nots" as part of his job for Google.

His house is loaded with fresh products from all the woke companies. In the fridge, he's got Starbucks, he loves their soy milk. He's got Ben & Jerry's in the freezer. He tells everyone that, if he shaved, he'd use Gillette, on account of the way they stand up for the Have-Nots. But, really, Marx uses Dollar Shave Club because it's cheaper, a higher quality. Secretly, he loves Chic-Fil-A. He buys all his comic books off Amazon. The truth is, he never thought people would actually try to make the whole "communism" thing work.

RELATED: SOCIALISM: This is the most important special we have done

Companies have adopted a form of socialism that is sometimes called woke capitalism. They use their status as corporations to spread a socialist message and encourage people to do their part in social justice. The idea of companies in America using socialism at all is as confusing and ridiculous as a donkey in a prom dress: How did this happen? Is it a joke? Why is nobody bursting out in laughter? How far is this actually going to go? Does someone actually believe that they can take a donkey to prom?

Companies have adopted a form of socialism that is sometimes called woke capitalism.

On the micro level, Netflix has made some socialist moves: The "like/dislike" voting system was replaced after a Netflix-sponsored stand-up special by Amy Schumer received as tidal wave of thumb-downs. This summer, Netflix will take it a step further in the name of squashing dissent by disabling user comments and reviews. And of course most of us share a Netflix account with any number of people. Beyond that, they're as capitalist as the next mega-company.

Except for one area: propaganda. Netflix has started making movie-length advertisements for socialism. They call them "documentaries," but we know better than that. The most recent example is "Knock Down the House," which comes out tomorrow. The 86-minute-long commercial for socialism follows four "progressive Democrat" women who ran in the 2018 midterms, including our favorite socialist AOC.

Here's a snippet from the movie so good that you'll have to fight the urge to wave your USSR flag around the room:

This is what the mainstream media wants you to believe. They want you to be moved. They want the soundtrack to inspire you to go out and do something.

Just look at how the mainstream media treated the recent high-gloss "documentary" about Ilhan Omar, "Time for Ilhan." It received overwhelmingly bad ratings on IMDb and other user-review platforms, but got a whopping 93% on the media aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.

This is exactly what the media wants you to think of when you hear the word socialism. Change. Empowerment. Strength. Diversity. They spend so much energy trying to make socialism cool. They gloss right over the unbelievable death toll. BlazeTV's own Matt Kibbe made a great video on this exact topic.

Any notion of socialism in America is a luxury, made possible by capitalism. The woke companies aren't actually doing anything for socialism. If they're lucky, they might get a boost in sales, which is the only thing they want anyway.

We want to show you the truth. We want to tell you the stories you won't hear anywhere else, not on Netflix, not at some movie festival. We're going to tell you what mainstream media doesn't want you to know.

Look at how much history we've lost over the years. They changed it slowly. But they had to. Because textbooks were out. So people were watching textbooks. It was printed. You would bring the book home. Mom and dad might go through it and check it out. So you had to slowly do things.

Well, they're not anymore. There are no textbooks anymore. Now, you just change them overnight. And we are losing new history. History is being changed in realtime.

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You have to write down what actually is happening and keep a journal. Don't necessarily tell everybody. Just keep a journal for what is happening right now. At some point, our kids won't have any idea of the truth. They will not have any idea of what this country was, how it really happened. Who were the good guys. Who were the bad guys. Who did what.

As Michelle Obama said. Barack knows. We have to change our history. Well, that's exactly what's happening. But it's happening at a very rapid pace.

We have to preserve our history. It is being systematically erased.

I first said this fifteen years ago, people need clay plots. We have to preserve our history as people preserved histories in ancient days, with the dead see scrolls, by putting them in caves in a clay pot. We have to preserve our history. It is being systematically erased. And I don't mean just the history of the founding of our country. I mean the history that's happening right now.

And the history that's happening right now, you're a problem if you're a conservative or a Christian. You are now a problem on the left, if you disagree and fall out of line at all. This is becoming a fascistic party. And you know what a fascist is. It doesn't matter if you're a Democrat or a Republican or an independent. If you believe it's my way or the highway, if you believe that people don't have a right to their opinion or don't have a right to their own life — you could do be a fascist.

Christianity might seem pretty well-protected in the U.S., but that's not the case in many parts of the globe.

On Easter Sunday, suicide bombers made the news for killing 290 innocent Christians in Sri Lanka and injuring another 500. On Tuesday, ISIS claimed responsibility for the massacre. Of course, the Western world mourned this tragic loss of life on a holy day of worship, but we forget that this isn't an isolated incident. Indeed, Christians are discriminated at extreme levels worldwide, and it needs to be brought to light. And whenever we do highlight brutal persecutions such as the Easter bombings in Sri Lanka, we need to call them what they are — targeted attacks against Christians. Sadly, many of our politicians are deathly afraid to do so.

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A 2018 Pew Research Center study found that Christians are harassed in 144 countries — the most of any other faith — slightly outnumbering Muslims for the top of the list. Additionally, Open Doors, a non-profit organization that works to serve persecuted Christians worldwide, found in their 2019 World Watch List that over 245 million Christians are seriously discriminated against for their religious beliefs. Sadly, this translates into 4,136 Christians killed and 2,625 either arrested, sentenced, imprisoned, or detained without trial over the year-long study period. And when it comes to churches, those in Sri Lanka were merely added to a long list of 1,266 Christian buildings attacked for their religion.

These breathtaking stats receive very little coverage in the Western world. And there seems to be a profound hesitation from politicians in discussing the issue of persecution against Christians. In the case of the Sri Lanka bombings, there's even a reluctance to use the word "Christian."

After the horrific Pittsburgh Synagogue and New Zealand Mosque shootings, Democrats rightfully acknowledged the disturbing trend of targeted attacks against Jews and Muslims. But some of these same politicians refer to the Sri Lanka bombings with careless ambiguity.

So why is it so hard for our leaders to acknowledge the persecutions Christians face?

Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, for instance, certainly did — calling the incursions "attacks on Easter worshippers." Understandably, the term confused and frustrated many Christians. Although, supporters of these politicians argued the term was appropriate since a recent Associated Press report used it, and it was later picked up by a variety of media outlets, including Fox News. However, as more Democrats like 2020 presidential candidate Julián Castro and Rep. Dan Kildee continued to use the phrase "Easter worshippers," it became clear that these politicians were going out of their way to avoid calling a spade a spade.

So why is it so hard for our leaders to acknowledge the persecutions Christians face? For starters, Christianity in democratic countries like the U.S. is seen differently than in devastated countries like Somalia. According to Pew Research, over 70% of Americans are Christian, with 66% of those Christians being white and 35% baby boomers. So while diverse Christians from all over the world are persecuted for their faith—in the U.S., Christians are a dominant religion full of old white people. This places Christians at the bottom of progressives' absurd intersectional totem poll, therefore leaving little sympathy for their cause. However, the differing experiences of Christians worldwide doesn't take away from the fact that they are unified in their beliefs.

By refusing to name the faith of the Sri Lankan martyrs, politicians are sending a message that they have very little, if no, concern about the growing amount of persecution against Christians worldwide.

Martyrs don't deserve to be known as "Easter worshippers." They should be known by the Christian faith they gave their lives for. Decent politicians need to call the tragedy in Sri Lanka what it is — a vicious attack on the Christian faith.

Patrick Hauf (@PatrickHauf) is a writer for Young Voices and Vice President of Lone Conservative. His work can be found in the Washington Examiner, Townhall, FEE, and more.