I have heard repeatedly that, despite being considered one of the most progressive/leftist mainstream politican in the United States, Bernie Sanders could actually be considered relatively moderate by European standards.
Intelligencer: Clearly, you’re bearish on the potential of existing governments intervening in that conflict on Main Street’s behalf. But if we made you dictator of the United States tomorrow, what policies would you enact to strengthen labor, and avert (or at least mitigate) the Greater Depression?
Roubini: The market, as currently ordered, is going to make capital stronger and labor weaker. So, to change this, you need to invest in your workers. Give them education, a social safety net — so if they lose their jobs to an economic or technological shock, they get job training, unemployment benefits, social welfare, health care for free. Otherwise, the trends of the market are going to imply more income and wealth inequality. There’s a lot we can do to rebalance it. But I don’t think it’s going to happen anytime soon. If Bernie Sanders had become president, maybe we could’ve had policies of that sort. [1.] Of course, Bernie Sanders is to the right of the CDU party in Germany. [2.] I mean, Angela Merkel is to the left of Bernie Sanders. [3.] Boris Johnson is to the left of Bernie Sanders, in terms of social democratic politics. Only by U.S. standards does Bernie Sanders look like a Bolshevik.
Similarly, "Bernie Sanders Is No Socialist: A Perspective from 2016 - The Globalist" avouches that Sanders is merely "a lower-case-d “democrat” – with some social improvement interests", and Would Bernie Sanders be electable in Germany? - The Local asserts:
According to Professor Thomas Greven of the John F. Kennedy Institute in Berlin, Sanders is a good fit for the left of German mainstream politics.
"Bernie Sanders is right," Greven told The Local. "In Germany, he'd fit in well with the workers' side of the SPD [Social Democratic Party]."
I'm addled by the mixed messages: Merkel and Johnson are generally considered to be moderates, or even to the right. How can they be more progressive than Sanders?