Inevitable Socialism?

“Socialists have always spent much of their time seeking new titles for their beliefs, because the old versions so quickly become outdated and discredited.”

-Margaret Thatcher

The socialism questions have been answered. Where Obama is concerned they were answered for most of us long before the election. The books, the speeches, the friends and associates, the rhetoric and the voting record all pointed in the same direction. His brief term as president is not a surprise. What is more unsettling is the actions of the rest of the Democratic party. Again, no surprise where Nancy Pelosi and several others are concerned, but when 60 senators vote in lockstep for socialized health care all pretense is gone. One can hardly blame the Democrats for attempting to avoid the socialist tag-but a mere shift in terminology will not change the outcome.

The left pretends that what they push for is not socialism. How do they make this claim? They seem to think it can’t be socialism if it does not include dictators and gulags and secret police. But what else is a growing government take of GDP, out of control spending, confiscatory taxes, anti-business policy, redistribution of wealth, meddling in banks and manufacturing, giveaways to unions, the takeover of health care and a steady loss of personal freedom? In Marxist theory this is the stage between capitalism and full blown communism.

In terms of socialism as an economic policy look around. Greece is crumbling and the rest of Europe is in denial as evidenced by their $1 trillion bailout, including $50 billion from US tax payers. First socialism brought them high taxes, sluggish economies with permanently high unemployment and now civil unrest. The riots in Greece reveal left wing policy to be little more than an organized tantrum. No money left? Reality be damned. They don’t care. They want what they want.

The Soviet Union collapsed. Former satellites are improving as capitalism, the natural inclination of human nature returns, spurred by the flat tax in many cases. China has thrown in the towel on socialism. They have a long way to go but as China moves in the right direction improvement follows as surely as day follows night.

Socialism had traditionally been implemented through income redistribution-from the currently producing class to the current moochers. Over the past 75 years a new tactic has been used: the transfer of wealth via entitlement benefits to the current generation from future generations via mounting debt and unfunded liabilities. We’ve even heard it called “inter-generational theft” by the economically clueless John McCain. Whoever fed him that sound bite ought to spend some time teaching him the basics of economics. The indignation that accompanies that observation will soon change to: “Look what we’ve done to ourselves.” We are the ones who’ve paid into Social Security for the past several decades. Soon to be retiring “baby boomers” will find that the “contributions” they made for 50 years are gone.

Now the markets are telling us that we are the generation who is being handed the tab. New all-time highs in gold signal inflation and loss of confidence in currencies worldwide.

“During my lifetime most of the problems the world has faced have come, in one fashion or other, from mainland Europe, and the solutions from outside it.”

-Margaret Thatcher

Direction is everything. Momentum is a most powerful force. Where are we heading? Why this overwhelming attitude that impending disaster is inevitable? That we are destined to the same sad fate as Europe? Even Charles Krauthammer seems resigned to the VAT. He should be careful here. All discussions of a VAT should point out the damage it does. It is not just a “cash cow”-it is an economy killer.

Inevitable? I don’t think so. Not as long as we can still vote. That is not the attitude at the TEA rallies. Solutions are simple albeit painful but workable with true leadership. The spending cuts are obvious to the head of any household or free market CEO. The big hurdle is that the current congress would have to admit their role. Hell, they can’t even admit that Fannie Mae needs to go or that Social Security is bankrupt. Sure these problems have been building for 75  years but then again some of them, like the disgraceful, term-limits poster boy Robert Byrd have been in politics almost that long (64 to be exact).

Government workers’ pay will have to be cut to reflect that of the private sector that funds them. All pensions will have to be privatized. Social security too. The voters are realizing that congress cannot be trusted with a dime of it. We may not be able to afford big tax cuts but neither can we afford tax hikes that will only tip us to the right side of the Laffer Curve. We certainly can’t afford an economy crushing VAT…or any of Europe’s other bad ideas. With pro-growth policies we can and will grow our way out of this mess.  There is no other way.

It is time for the biggest repeal since the end of Prohibition. We’ll start with health care and keep going. We’ve had a socialist pyramid scheme building for 75 years. Democrats are the authors but the GOP was / is complicit. Bush made a feeble attempt to start entitlement reform. So what. It is said that to try is to fail with honor. There is no honor in backing down on the single most important economic issue of our lifetime. How about a little Churchillian “never, never, never give up”?

After The Democrat sweep in 2008 the lapdog media was quick to declare the end of capitalism and the death of the GOP. This was wishful thinking. At the national level the spotlight would shift to Pelosi, Reid, Dodd and Barney Frank. Their corruption and poor judgment would surely sink them.

On the GOP side McCain was criticized from the right for his incompetent campaign and business bashing. RINO’s like Lindsey Graham are called out for joining in crazy “cap and trade” proposals while global warming is revealed to be a scam. Despite missteps from Olympia Snowe and others the Republican party held firm in their opposition to health care-siding with the American majority. It is now the Democrat party that is splintering as the extreme left wing is unhappy. Obama is too centrist for them!

We face a series of elections. Goal #1 is the end of the Democrat majority. Scott Brown’s victory in the race for Ted Kennedy’s old seat was a breakthrough. Goal #2 is better candidates / winners in this election and 2012. All incumbents must go. Recycling of Romney or Palin will backfire. New blood like Paul Ryan of Wisconsin or Tim Pawlenty is the better bet. Progress is evident already. Incumbents are losing primaries. Illinois with their early primary is behind in this. We have a long battle ahead. Corruption is deeply entrenched. Hopeless feelings abound but we can draw inspiration from other states and then copy their plan.

Both major parties need to be overhauled. We need term limits and we need to send them back to the private sector-if they have ever been there. No lobbying. The next generation of leaders should bring private sector experience as a prerequisite. I’d like to see an entrepreneur president in my lifetime. The candidacies of Carly Fiorina and Meg Whitman are encouraging. If it is time for our first female president let’s hope we can do better than our first black president.

Pat Duggan

Published in: on May 13, 2010 at 4:33 pm  Leave a Comment  
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