I was prompted to write this post because of a comment that was left on one of my posts on Facebook. The author shall remain nameless, unless he decides to comment on this post. Point blank, he said he did not understand the hatred of socialism in this country. In response to that, I said if he didn’t understand why conservatives hate socialism, then he didn’t truly understand what socialism is all about.
Socialism can be defined in many ways, as it has many facets. Economic socialism requires social ownership of the means of production. In other words, companies that produce or manufacture goods or services are owned and operated by cooperative management. Supposedly, it is designed to meet the needs of the people and not for private profit. It is the complete and total antipathy of capitalism and the system of government the Constitution of the United States is designed to outline and govern.
America was founded on the principles of individual freedom. America was also founded to give states the freedom to choose their own direction. The federal government was a limited government, with limited enumerated powers. All power not specifically given to the federal government is left to the states. Our country has thrived for over two hundred years because our system works. I believe the reason we see such trouble and division in our country is because the system has stopped working. In other words, we have moved from a society where individuals can excel to a society where individual exceptionalism is frowned upon. We have moved from a limited federal government to a leviathan that is slow-moving, slow to respond, and currently locked in gridlock. If you require proof of that, turn your attention to the federal response in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. And yet, we have far too many people in this country who believe the federal government needs to grow even more, to spend even more of our money.
You may ask, what does big government have to do with socialism? While they are not necessarily the same thing, I would contend the following. Socialism is usually defined as government ownership of capital and the means of production. Big government doesn’t require said ownership, as such, but it does lead to confiscation of wealth by the government, in the form of higher taxes on those who are successful in whatever endeavor they have engaged in. Because the proponents of big government believe the federal government can do all things better, they justify these higher taxes by saying the government needs to redistribute the wealth they are confiscating. As if the federal government can do anything better than individuals or private groups. But, I digress.
President Barack Obama is just such a proponent. He tries to keep it hidden, but he has let it slip a couple of times. There is ample evidence that he believes the federal government should be able to raise taxes on the wealthy, almost at will. Most of the liberal Democrats seem to hold that same opinion. It is a form of creeping socialism and because of that, it is a dangerous thing to have present in our society. Little by little it has taken over our country, until we can no longer recognize the America we grew up in.
The young man who made the comments that prompted this post also tried to make another point. He said a lot of people his age were moderate and progressive, but couldn’t do anything to make changes because the older generations were so entrenched in our views. In light of that, this is one of the older generation that intends to remain entrenched in his views. Socialism is not the answer to the ills of America. Socialism will not get us out of debt. Socialism will not improve our education system. Socialism will not improve our roads. Socialism will not improve our standing in the world.
Socialism has never been a success story. What makes us believe America would fare any different?