America has been moving toward socialism for many years. The irony is that the final steps were taken by a Republican administration and a Republican candidate for President. Even if McCain wins the election—and I still believe he will—, the damage inflicted on the Constitution and our capitalist economy will take years to repair. That is assuming there is a will to repair it.
Tuesday, President Bush is scheduled to announce a plan to use some $250 billion of the bailout money to purchase equity in nine of the nation’s largest and most influential banks. The accurate term for such a purchase is “socialism”. The President and his advisors spent the weekend huddled with the financial leaders of other socialist economies from all over the world, particularly those from the Democratic Socialist nations of Europe.
Any reservations he may have had about the wisdom of taking such drastic measures evidently were overcome by the support he got from other socialist nations during the course of the meetings. The selling point to the American people is that the government is only buying limited equity in these companies and not actually nationalizing them. The prospect is held out that when these ailing companies recover, “taxpayers” will realize a return on their equity investments.
Some super-optimists even believe that in the end, taxpayers will come out with a profit. The use of the term “taxpayers” is simply to make it more palatable to the public. Based on the experience with the “peace dividend” at the end of the cold war and other historical examples the only thing taxpayers can reasonably expect to get from their investment is a bigger government and more taxes to support its growth.
Socialism is not a new theory of government. It has been around for over a hundred years and there is plenty of history in our own, and other countries from which to judge its effectiveness. Venezuela, Cuba, Russia, China, France, Great Britain, and Germany, just to name a few. The failures in these economies are in direct proportion to the degree of socialists policies utilized by their governments, as are the failures in our own. By now, one would think we had learned that socialism simply does not work, but there is always the belief that it will work if only the right people are in charge.
Socialism and capitalism cannot co-exist for any extended period of time. With the demise of capitalism in America, there will be nothing to stop the gradual change to an international “globalism” of the type envisioned by George Soros and his Global Enterprise Institute. That change would be greatly accelerated by the election of Barack Obama. At least on that point we cannot say he has attempted to deceive us. He has made his intentions to push an international socialist agenda well known.
The problem is that most Americans do not fully understand the difference between socialism and capitalism and do not see the harm that socialism brings to the very fabric of our society. In theory socialism promises social justice, equality and prosperity for all. In practice, it delivers a scarcity of basic needs, soft tyranny, and economic hardship to all except the favored few with proper connections. All one has to do to verify this is to look at the experiences of other nations where socialism has been in practice for a few generations.
Capitalism promises liberty and opportunity. What it delivers is up to the individual. Anyone with intelligence, initiative, and ambition can achieve according to their own efforts, talents, and abilities. Capitalism offers the opportunity for unlimited success but it also carries the risk of failure when wrong decisions are made. Socialism has low risk and low to moderate returns. Capitalism has a relatively high risk with returns limited only by the individual himself or herself.
Another undeniable characteristic of socialism evident from experience, is that it provides a breeding ground for corruption. That is because it has no moral foundation on which to build a stable society. The first principle of socialism is wealth redistribution. That in itself is an immoral principle since it takes, by the force of government, the fruits of labor from those in society who produce and redistributes it to the slothful, lazy and ineffective non-producers. It is not by accident that the decay of moral standards in our own country parallels the infiltration of socialist principles into our government and society. The practice of fortifying our homes and cars with hi-tech locks and alarms, and the reluctance to wander out at night in certain neighborhoods is a relatively new phenomenon.
I grew up in homes where the doors were seldom locked and friends and neighbors often did not bother to knock when they came calling. As late as the 1950s entire families would routinely take blankets to Lincoln Park, on Chicago’s lakefront and sleep out overnight, unmolested, to enjoy the cooling effects of the lake breeze. That, of course, was before the widespread use of air conditioning, but it was also before the rise in crime and immorality.
We had crime, violence, vices and all the other negative things that accompany the human condition, but they were rare in the lives of most Americans. It was not until the principles of socialism and communism began to be introduced into our institutions wholesale, that our culture began to change dramatically for the worse. Anyone whose lifespan of awareness covers the period from 1950 until today will recognize the truthfulness of this observation.
We cannot roll back the influence of socialism on our country in this election, but we can take a stand to stop its spread and hopefully start a reversal of its effects in future elections. The choice between socialism and capitalism is in the hands of the voters more so than ever before. If we elect Barack Obama and the socialist entourage that will follow him to Washington, we will have no one to blame but ourselves. We will have gotten the government we deserve.