Now, all this makes for great election drama, but as political analysis, it’s not only thin material, it’s totally incorrect!
Let’s really look at the facts. It turns out there is more than one Valic Mid-cap fund. The diarist and his “twitter pal” have looked at the wrong fund! (Screenshots never lie, but they should at least be screenshots of the right thing!)
They cite, and show a screenshot related to the Valic Mid-cap Value Fund, which indeed has Diamondback Energy as a holding, amounting to 1.40% of investment by the fund.
But according to a separate picture in the diary, a screenshot from OpenSecrets.org, Bernie invests in the VALIC Mid-Cap Index Fund, which has completely different holdings! According to Valic’s own prospectus, Valic Mid-Cap Index Fund is a financially relatively conservative investment fund “expected to provide investment results closely corresponding to the performance of the S&P MidCap 400® Index. It normally invests at least 80% of assets in stocks that are in the index.”
2.59% of its investments are in the Energy sector, but none involved in fracking, so far as I can tell. As of 4th quarter 2015, Valic’s largest holding in the Index fund is the consumer products company, Jarden Corp. They have .77% of its holdings in Jarden. There’s no indication that Diamondback is part of their holdings in this fund at all.
Now even if Bernie did invest in the fund that included Diamondback (of which there’s no proof), at the maximum of the investment he is documented as having, $50,000 (but it could be less), the amount of his investment that included Diamondback comes to approximately $700.00! (50,000 x 1.4%) And since Diamondback does more than fracking as a proportion of their revenue, then the amount “invested” in fracking is less than that. In any case, it’s much less than even one of the $2,700 donations Clinton has received from lobbyists from companies involved in the oil and gas industry.
But such suppositions are irrelevant, since the diarist isn’t even looking at the correct fund and there is zero evidence Bernie Sanders has a penny invested in the fracking company mentioned!
[Update: The diarist tries to make something out of the fact that Bernie invested a small sum in another Valic Fund, the Aggressive Growth Lifestyle Fund. This fund has an approximate 2% holding in the Valic Value Fund, which has the 1.4% holding in Diamondback, which has some proportion of its business in fracking. At this point, the diarist’s attempt to find something crooked about Bernie gives a new meaning to the term “straining at a gnat”!]
Facts don’t seem to matter here, only a frenzied grasping at anything some Hillary Clinton supporters can find to throw dirt at Sanders. This particular attempt is especially pathetic.
As for investments in capitalist America, there’s no way that you can go through the day and not involve oneself in some aspect of the economy that is dirty. (Where and by whom are your clothes made, for instance?) This and similar attacks against Sanders are not substantive, but meant to direct attention away from the real differences between him and Hillary Clinton.