As Republicans applauded the line, the network cameras couldn't find the fresh young face of socialism in America, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, though they did manage to find the red-faced scowl of old Bernie Sanders who looked like a stake had just been driven through his heart. A picture is worth a thousand Marxist dialectics.
I found the line somewhat ironic though, since I've been writing for some time that WE ALREADY ARE A SOCIALIST COUNTRY! You may not realize it yourself. Donald Trump may not know it. And Bernie and Alex certainly don't think the project is complete. But it's true. Consider these points:
- In 1900, government consumed less that 10% of the private sector in the U.S. ("private sector" = GDP minus government spending)
- Under Barack Obama, the last administration to have a complete record, the government consumed around 70% of the private sector in the U.S.
- When a majority of the wealth production of an economy is dedicated to government during peacetime, that is by the modern definition... socialism.
- The big ticket items have all been largely socialized in the U.S. over the last century - housing, education, finance, health care, and retirement. Only food, transportation, energy, and communication remain as somewhat private sector matters. (Except of course for food stamps, school lunches, agricultural subsidies, public transportation, Amtrak, TSA, FAA, NTSB, EPA, DOE, etc. etc. etc.)
- Health care is almost entirely controlled by the government, and for the poor and those over 65 on Medicare and Medicaid, where the bulk of health spending occurs, it is entirely funded by government.
- Virtually every mortgage in the U.S. is owned by a Government Sponsored Entity, like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
- Every student loan since the Obama administration now comes from the government.
- The entire financial sector of the U.S. economy is backstopped and heavily regulated by government.
- Education is almost entirely funded and controlled by the government.
- Social Security is the largest retirement program on earth, and even private pensions are guaranteed by the government.
- Government is so vast and unlimited that even Donald Trump, an avowed anti-socialist, is powerless to stop these policies and programs.
- We have about $22 trillion in debt, and the Fed borrowed/printed another $3.5 trillion under Obama. It's a total of about $25 trillion in debt funded by a private sector that runs about $13 trillion annually.
- If and when interest rates normalize to around 5%, which is inevitable, we will more closely resemble Venezuela than any version of the U.S. we've ever known.
Uninformed voters are always suckers for free stuff. They never understand that the cure is always worse than the disease, when the cure is socialism.