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Sunday, May 28, 2017

Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), is not only making a splash in the Democratic primaries. He’s also pushing the bounds of America’s political vocabulary — with his proud declaration of being a democratic socialist.

“Socialist” is a word that right wingers have used repeatedly as an accusation against President Obama, to conflate his fairly standard brand of liberalism with some sort of Red Menace. But for his own part, Sanders has long been proud of the label.

But what does socialism actually mean? And might Bernie really be in the mainstream, if he can just convince people to admit it?

Notably, Sanders has often defined the word “socialist” for American audiences by invoking the many democratic-socialist, social democratic, or labor parties of European countries — perhaps to encourage people to realize that these ideas are actually practiced in various forms in many places, and might not be so unrealistic for America.

In an interview this week with The Des Moines Register, Sanders was asked about this forbidden S-word:

Democratic socialism is taking a hard look at what countries like Denmark, Sweden, Norway (and) Finland … have done over the years and try to ascertain what they have done that is right, in terms of protecting the needs of millions of working families and the elderly and the children. And I think there’s much that we can learn from those countries that have had social democratic governments and labor governments or whatever.

Sanders also pointed to some concrete legacies of socialist activism in America, which people now take for granted as the ideas were taken up by people in power:

If you look at what people in the 1920s in the Socialist party were saying — the idea of a 40-hour work week, time-and-a-half for overtime, the right for workers to engage in collective bargaining.

The struggle for civil rights in this country, for women’s rights in this country.

All of that came — gay rights — all of that came from strong grassroots political movements, which ended up filtering up to the top.

Sanders reiterated a similar theme in this interview with Katie Couric on Yahoo News, shortly after he launched his presidential campaign.

In a 1989 appearance on C-SPAN, Sanders declare that America needed a third party from the left — saying while that he had supported Jesse Jackson’s presidential campaigns, he remained very critical of the idea of pursuing change within the Democratic Party. Yet even back then, he was invoking the comparisons to social-democratic and labor parties in Europe. He also cited the democratic-socialist party in Canada, as a positive example. (More about them later.)

Of course, a lot of things can change over the years, and as a practicing politician Sanders has learned to get along fine as a member of the Democratic caucus in Washington after he was first elected to Congress in 1990, though never formally joining the party. And now, he is himself doing what he once criticized Jesse Jackson for — seeking progressive change as a Democratic presidential candidate — and it’s working out pretty nicely for him so far, with an impressive and growing base of support.

When Sanders appeared on Late Night with Seth Meyers a few weeks ago, he used his typical line about how America could look to these other democratic-socialist countries to see how it could improve itself. “Some have tried to frame you as this fringe candidate,” Meyers said. “but a lot of things you believe, the majority of Americans believe.”

At first glance, however, many Americans might associate the words “socialism” or even “democratic socialism” with the early 20th-century definitions involving direct government ownership and control of industry. But this is hardly true anymore in the democratic world — not even for political parties that still call themselves socialist.

A famous example of this shift occurred in the 1990s when the Labour Party in the United Kingdom was modernized. Under the “New Labour” movement, Tony Blair changed the party’s longstanding “Clause Four.” First adopted in 1918, this clause in the party’s platform had committed Labour to the nationalization of industry. By ending that campaign plank in 1995, Blair got Labour ready to finally win a national election after having been out of power continuously since 1979 and after the mass privatizations under Margaret Thatcher’s Conservatives. Blair won the 1997 election in a landslide, absolutely routing the Tories, and Labour went on to hold office until 2010.

But Americans might also find an impressive example of a longer, slower evolution — with many intermediate stages — much closer to our own country.

Looking to the north, we can see this evolution of democratic socialism in the history of the New Democratic Party of Canada. Founded in 1933, originally calling itself the “Co-Operative Commonwealth Federation,” the CCF of that era responded to the depths of the Great Depression with a truly radical platform. Its founding document, known as the Regina Manifesto, called for a full centrally planned economy, and concluded as followed:

No CCF Government will rest content until it has eradicated capitalism and put into operation the full programme of socialized planning which will lead to the establishment in Canada of the Cooperative Commonwealth.

Existing as a third party, the CCF won election in the province of Saskatchewan in 1944, and would go on to pioneer greater government involvement in health care, labor law, public infrastructure, transportation, and social services. Indeed, the party’s single greatest accomplishment arguably is Canada’s single-payer medical system — which was co-opted by both the Liberals and the Conservatives in the 1960s.

By 1956, the party made its first major step at modernization, releasing a revised platform called the Winnipeg Declaration, which dropped the outright call to eradicate capitalism. Later the CCF relaunched as the New Democratic Party, as part of a formal alliance with the country’s organized labor movement. To mark the 50th anniversary of the Regina Manifesto, the NDP issued a new statement of principles in 1983 that took some rhetorical steps away from centralized control:

Finally, socialists believe that social ownership is an essential means to achieve our goals. This means not simply the transfer of title of large enterprises to the state. We believe in decentralized ownership and control, including co-operatives and credit unions, greater public accountability, and progressive democratization of the workplace.

For many years, and until just very recently, the NDP had revised its democratic socialist mission in terms that were still highly critical of capitalism. The NDP has governed several provinces on and off, but long remained in third place at the federal level.

Then a huge breakthrough occurred in 2011: The NDP came in second place in a national election, displacing the once-mighty Liberal Party. At this point, NDP leaders began looking at still more modernization, in order to present themselves as a viable government-in-waiting. (In addition, academic opinion had held that the NDP was never a wide-eyed revolutionary party in practice, so the update was really just a formalizing of the party’s longstanding reality.)

In 2013, the NDP’s statement of values was changed to be much more inclusive — to hail progress and diversity, instead of denouncing capitalism and profit:

New Democrats seek a future that brings together the best of the insights and objectives of Canadians who, within the social democratic and democratic socialist traditions, have worked through farmer, labour, co-operative, feminist, human rights and environmental movements, and with First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples, to build a more just, equal, and sustainable Canada within a global community dedicated to the same goals.

In the most recent polls, the NDP is now taking first place in a close three-way battle against both the incumbent Conservatives as well as the resurgent Liberals. Based on current polls, the NDP could potentially win a plurality of seats — not a full majority, but they could likely form what is known as a “minority government” in Ottawa. Canada’s election will be held on October 19, 2015.

So who knows, perhaps social democracy — the modernized, democratic socialist ideal of activist government — could have a growing appeal even in North America, after all.

Illustration: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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Copyright 2015 The National Memo

115 Responses to Can Bernie Sanders Take ‘Socialism’ Mainstream In America?

  1. Say the word ‘socialism’ to Middle America and you’ve got a losing candidate. Moderates win national elections, not the far right or the far left. I like what Sanders says about income inequality, but when the GOP pins the ‘socialist’ label on him, he will be toast in the swing states necessary to win the presidency. HIs promotion of a 90% tax rate is so outlandish to the vast majority of Americans, even those who would most benefit, that once the Republicans start their attack ads on him it will be over for the Sanders campaign. Then add in his misogynist remarks about men masturbating to women tied up, on their knees, in submission and his statement that women fantasize about being raped simultaneously by 3 men and Middle America will be horrified. The GOP is letting all this go for the moment because they are hoping he can win the nomination and be the candidate they know they can defeat, but when the ads begin to last out at him over the airways and Fox News begins their attack, the Democrats will see a Republican being inaugurated in 2017.

    • The problem with the USA is the threat of the ‘Drop a dime’ neighbours. In my work in the USA I have never knew a country where people are so frightened to discuss politics in general and socialism in particular. The fear is that being ‘snitched’ as a socialist can cost you your job.
      And, if as I did, and admit that I did not attend church on a Sunday you can find yourself treated with suspicion. Frankly, I didn’t give a toss because my time there was limited and I was soon on my way back to civilisation.
      Finally. there is NO CHANCE of a Republican president in 1917 unless the financial jiggery pokery of Billionaires like Sheldon Adelson is successful.

    • US needs a much better balance between socialism and capitalism than we have now. We need something a little farther right than Sanders but also a lot farther left than the rich old men now dominating the Republican Party. There are some social safety net programs that are most likely cheaper within ten years than neglecting the problems they attempt to address, like housing those who can’t afford to rent anything in the private apartment rental business, food stamps for those who can’t afford decent food otherwise, Medicare for the elderly and Medicaid for the poor, and public school to provide most of our youth with as much education as they can benefit from..

      • I agree with you. I support social welfare programs. We need to spend more on public education and less on prisons. We are the only western nation that does not have paid maternity leave. We need breakfast and lunch programs for kids who need the meals but haven’t the money. We need free child health and dental programs in our schools or community centers and we need home care for the elderly so they can remain in place with appropriate care provided. It is imperative that we not allow a Republican into office who will continue to dismantle the social support system.

        • I think main point is “most likely cheaper within ten years than neglect”. I have an idea of what cost/benefit analysis is, but can’t do it myself. Michael Bloomberg and hedge fund pals did cost/benefit analysis on replacing fossil fuel with renewable energy but completely neglected the need to buy off stockholders and CEOs of major fossil fuel firms. I wonder if he and pals would be willing and able to do cost/benefit analysis on treating poor decently vs either neglecting them or trying to dump them on some other locality.

  2. Funny how Democrats & Liberals always denied they were Socialists, but now they are admitting their true ideology. Most Americans reject Socialism because it has been a failed system of government. This also shows how it is the Left that is FAR LEFT, which makes normal Conservative government “appear” Far Right as a comparison.

    • The right appears far right because they are. The fact they want to take out SS, Medicare and anything else that helps people when they need it indicates their position. They have even tried to corner religion. Sanders is a democratic socialist and hasen’t failed.

        • Name a republican candidate that likes what they call entitlements. They won’t campaign against SS or medicare because they are trying to get elected, but they all hate it. That is why they call them entitlements. They hate the programs but love to steal the money that the American people funded them with. Sanders may not be the answer but I don’t understand why we can’t at least listen to some of his ideas. We obviously need some new ideas.

          • You are the one accusing people of wanting to destroy social security and medicare. Prove what you are posting. You make accusations then just say they all hate. If they all hate, then you should be able to show one who wants to destroy these programs. We should listen to new ideas,

          • Didn’t Bush try to, privatize Social Security?
            Ever hear of SILVERADO?
            So much for a banking system!!
            Want MORE examples?

          • Bush proposed allowing us to put up to 10% of what we pay into social security in a private account of our own. 90% of what we pay would still have gone into the current system. After 30 or 40 years of investing 10% of our social security payment, one may have one heck of a savings. Silverado was a good movie, but I don’t know any candidates with that name.

          • LOL. I guess you could start with Rick Perry. Just one person that actually said he hates both of them. It is common knowledge that the GOP wants to privatize these programs including medicaid. Some of this would be done through changes in ACA. Investing 10% of your SS payment for 30 or 40 years would have disappeared in 2008. The 90% would still be available through SS. The idiots in Washington, Dems. or GOP are all looking for a solution. Don’t expect them to do anything if in any way it affects them. SS recipients have already had some cuts. Conservatives don’t like any welfare even if funded by the people. If I have to prove this to you, I have already wasted OUR time.

          • I have to disagree with you when you say it is common knowledge that the GOP wants to privatize those programs. If you put that 10% in mutual funds, you would have been ok in 2008. The people in Washington managed to exempt their selves from obamacare and will continue to exempt their selves from anything they feel like. They don’t care about us, just how much power and money they can make. All welfare is funded by the people. The government doesn’t any create a product to sell. Government gets all its money from the working people in this country.

          • You are probably correct. Its not common knowledge because it takes a little time and interest to gain knowledge. To many Americans don’t care. Mutual funds were fairly safe but that is only because in general they don’t pay much.
            Until a politician is willing to promise with consequences and in writing to indict the people on wall street that were responsible for the global economic crash in 2008, I won’t vote for any of them. That probably means I’m not voting.

          • Getting any politician to do what they promise is almost impossible. They will say and promise anything to get elected. Our political parties spend millions to win a 100,000 dollar position. That alone should tell us just how “honest” our politicians are. Seems like we actually vote for lobbyists. They are the ones buying the elections.
            Try to vote for your local issues anyway. School millage’s are getting harder and harder to pass.

          • Wasn’t Neil Bush the bank president of SILVERADO?
            Ever hear of JEB Bush?
            Wouldn’t WALL STREET love to get its hands on 10% of SS?

          • The up to 10% would have been completely voluntary. If one didn’t want to invest anything thing, they wouldn’t be forced to. It would have been completely up to the individual where the up to 10% was invested. What party is Neil Bush a presidential candidate for? Yep I have heard of Jeb, won’t vote for him, but I have heard of him.

          • You’re just one more lying sack of crap. You know full well that that the GOP’s long term objective is to gut social security and turn it into a voucher program just like they want to do to Medicaire.

            Here’s some recent comments on that from Bernie where they’re starting with the SS benefits of disabled veterans and even making budget cuts for Medicare and Medicaid:

            At a press conference today, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) shredded the Republican budget plans while taking Republicans to task for cutting Social Security benefits for 1 million disabled veterans.

            During the press conference, Sen. Sanders said:

            I must say that the budget passed last year by the Republican House which called for massive cuts in Medicare,Medicaid, education, nutrition, affordable housing, and other programs impacting the lives of working Americans, while providing huge tax breaks for the wealthy and large corporations, is a budget approach which moves us in exactly the wrong direction. And, needless to say, I will do everything that I can to oppose a similar type of budget if that is what the Republicans will be proposing this year.

            http://www.politicususa.com/2015/01/16/bernie-sanders-rips-republicans-cutting-social-security-1-million-disabled-veterans.html

          • So when a communist says something, it is true? Once again you show your lack of class with you juvenile name calling.

          • Sorry, after months, of posting facts which you’ve consistently refused to believe because you’re a paid troll; I’ve long sense reverted to calling you what you clearly are – A LYING SAC OF CRAP!!!!!!!!!!

            I have more respect for pond scum than I do for you and you’re RWNJ buddies!!!

          • Democrats are the Party that always refuses to put OUR money for SS in a lockbox, because then they can’t use it to buy votes. Still a fool.

          • And what is all that supposed to mean?? If you’ve got some notion that the 2.8 Trillion in Social Security trust fund isn’t still their you’re just trying to project one more lying fantasy.

            And just for your information, the SS Trust fund has actually grown by over 1/2 a trillion during Obama’s time in office. So anyone who tries to sell you on the notion that the SS Trust fund is going bankrupt anytime soon – is just one more lying Republican such as yourself.

            And one solution to SS that no one has actually brought to light is the fact that just improving America’s economy and creating more higher paying jobs (like increasing the min wage), would not only add trillions to the SS Trust Fund but extend its solvency for decades!!!!!!

      • Are you talking about Obama & the Democrats stealing $716 BILLION from Medicare braniac? Or how Obama & the Democrats do nothing to make S.S. solvent? Republicans have been trying to safeguard these programs for future generations. Someday, when it’s all gone with our TRILLIONS in debt, you will (maybe) understand what Party is actually for the People, not just to get votes & power by “giving” stuff without funds to pay for it. You are a fool.

        • There you go again with that miss information. Obama didn’t take a dime out of Medicare, he reduced the increase over the next 10 years and while he was at it fixed the hole in the program. By doing so he made the program solvent till 2030. Show me one bill in congress that makes any improvement in SS funding. All the Republicans have been trying to do is line their own packets as well as their friends. They are the party for the people alright. the rich people. Show me any bill that helped anyone but the rich that they have put forth.

        • And on top of what bobnstuff just said, explain to all of us here how them Dems were supposed to do anything to improve the solvency of SS beyond what he said, given that they’ve had control of Congress since Obama’s been in office for only 2 to 3 months?? And that’s 2-3 months over the past 20 years!!!!!!!

        • Obama, not Cheney, insisted that DEFICITS DON’T MATTER?
          Do you always make LAFFER CURVES on paper napkins?
          Use Rush Limbaugh statistics?

        • If you actually believe either party is for the people, you are brainwashed. Jeb said yesterday people need to work more. This is at a time when people are working 2 and 3 jobs and more hours than have been worked in over 60 years. Even a fool knows that. The Gov’t is owned by Wall St. The only people politicians work for, are for themselves. Sir.

        • Wow!! How do you make this stuff up?? Suggesting it’s the Dems who are responsible for the 18 T in Debt when it’s clearly Reagan and the 2 Bushes who are responsible for more than 90% of it!!

          And talking about taking free stuff – when it’s the Red States that BY FAR lead the nation in sucking food stamps and welfare. Of the 456 counties in America that suck by far the most welfare and food stamps, 421 of those counties voted for Romney in the 2012 election. That’s more than 90% of the counties voted Republican!!

          Nice try loser!! BUT YOU REALLY ARE A LOSER!!!

    • “Most Americans reject Socialism because it has been a failed system of government.”

      Really? A failed form of government?? How interesting!! Why is it then that there are at least 75 forms of socialism that are not only part of our government, but also we take for granted every single day!!

      It’s not socialism that’s the problem, it’s you mindless right wingers and other clueless Americans who really don’t have the foggiest idea of what you’re talking about when you get into the subject of SOCIALISM!!!!!!!!!

      I’m going to list 75 socialistic departments, objectives, current practices – you figure them out that are already part of the American culture. With all these SOCIALISTIC things that we are already accustomed to and are part of our every day lives, why don’t you explain to all of us here, why adding one or two more ideas that may be related to SOCIALISm is such a Catastrophic thing in the minds of you mentally deficient RWNJs??

      And which of these 75 courtesy of the DailyKos, would you like to see us get rid of to cut down on the socialism within the American culture??

      Our Military? The Department of Justice? The Interstate Highway System?
      Libraries around the nation? Or Maybe police departments or fire departments??

      What should we take out of the American culture to make us less socialistic??? HUh?????????

      1. MIlitary/Defense – The United States military is the largest and most
      funded socialist program in the world. It operates thanks to our taxpayer
      dollars and protects the country as a whole. From the richest citizens to the
      homeless who sleep under the bridge. We are all protected by our military
      whether we pay taxes or not. This is complete socialism.

      2. Highways/Roads – Those roads and highways you drive on every single day are completely taxpayer funded. Your tax dollars are used to maintain, expand, and preserve our highways and roads for every one’s use. President Eisenhower was inspired by Germany’s autobahn and implemented the idea right here in America. That’s right, a republican president created our taxpayer funded, national highway system. This was a different time, before the republican party came down with a vicious case of rabies that never went away.

      3. Public Libraries – Yes. That place where you go to check out books from
      conservative authors telling you how horrible socialism is, is in fact
      socialism. Libraries are taxpayer funded. You pay a few bucks to get a library
      card and you can read books for free for the rest of your life.

      4. Police – Ever had a situation where you had to call the police?
      Then you have used a taxpayer funded socialist program. Anyone can call the
      police whether they pay taxes or not. They are there to protect and serve the
      community, not individuals. This is complete socialism on a state level, but
      still socialism all the same. Would you rather have to swipe your credit card
      before the police will help you?

      5. Fire Dept. – Hopefully you have never had a fire in your home. But
      if you have, you probably called your local taxpayer-funded fire department to
      put the fire out. Like police, this is state socialism. You tax dollars are
      used to rescue your entire community in case of a fire. It use to be set up
      where you would pay a fee every month to the fire dept. for their service. If
      you didn’t pay, they let your house burn down. Sadly, a man from Tennessee had this exact situation happen to him in 2011 because he didn’t pay his $75.00 fee. I guess that small town in Tennessee would rather let people’s houses burn down that resort to evil socialism. So don’t take for granted the fact that you have a 24/7 fire dept. to put out your burning home thanks to socialism.

      6. Postal Service – Like having mail delivered directly to your front door and paying next to nothing to send mail anywhere you want? Well it’s all made
      possible by socialism.

      7. Student Loans and Grants – Did you go to College?
      If you did, you family might not have been rich enough to pay your way through. So you got your education anyway through student loans and grants from the federal government at taxpayer expense. Of course you have to pay back the loans, but if not the government, did you know anyone else who was going to lend you tens of thousands of dollars? Probably not. So the taxpayers lent you the money and you paid it back with slight interest. The government grants you accepted were gifts from the taxpayer and the federal government that you did not have to pay back. Socialism got you through school.

      8. Bridges – Along with our highways, our government used your taxpayer dollars to build bridges. This allows the public to travel across rivers without having to sail or swim.

      9. Garbage Collection – Like having your garbage collected once a week instead of having to drive it to the landfill yourself? Thank socialism.

      10. Public Landfills – Taxpayer dollars are used to have places to dump all
      of our garbage that is collected by taxpayer funded garbage men.

      11. War – That’s right! War would not be possible without socialism. Your tax dollars are used to fight wars for your country. This is Big Government at it’s biggest. Private companies don’t attack other countries, at least not yet. Government is the only entity in America that can defend us from foreign enemies and our tax dollars are used for every second of it. Socialism has brought down Adolf Hitler, Saddam Hussein, and Bin Laden. War may
      very well be the most socialist thing on this list.

      12. Farm Subsidies – Our government uses taxpayer funds to pay farmers and businesses to provide their income and keep them growing food for the public.

      13. CIA – The Central Intelligence Agency is vital to America’s security. The CIA is completely taxpayer funded to protect the public from enemies.

      14. FBI – The Federal bureau of investigations is a taxpayer funded government agency.

      15. Congressional Health Care – As Republicans in congress warn us of the evils of government-run health care, most of them are covered by taxpayer-funded government-run health care. You literally pay for their health care while they tell you that paying for your neighbors health care through a public option or single-payer system is socialism. They are 100% correct, it is socialism. They’re just not telling you that they like their socialist health care, they just don’t think you should have it. They are afraid you might like it better than the private insurance you have now that funds their campaigns and gives them money to push what is best for them and not for you. Members of congress are free to opt out of their evil government health care, but most of them don’t because deep down, they like socialism too.

      16. Polio Vaccine – In the 1950’s polio ravaged the United States. Until Dr. Jonas Salk invented a cure, finally ridding America of this terrible disease. Dr. Salk could have sold his vaccine in the free market and made millions and millions of dollars. Instead he gave it to the federal government to begin eradicating polio. He said that he made plenty of money as a scientist and felt it was too important to try and profit from or create a business around.

      17. EPA – Republicans hate this taxpayer-funded government program because they have the nerve to tell corporations that they may have to
      follow environmental rules ad regulations for the greater good of the earth and the people who live on it. But if you don’t like breathing mercury, drinking
      dirty water, and breathing in chemicals, you should like this example of
      socialism working for the people.

      18. Social Security – You pay a tax to help ensure that our grandparents and
      senior citizens of America have money to live off of when they are retired or
      too elderly to work. I love hearing rich people bitch about this one because
      the truth is that they do not pay a social security tax, like most payroll
      taxes. This little piece of socialism helps prevent our senior citizens from
      sinking into poverty and starving to death.

      19. Museums – Many museums are privately owned by organizations and
      groups, but many are also taxpayer-funded state, national, and federal museums.

      20. Public Schools – Can’t afford to send your children to an expensive
      private school? Thanks to socialism and government, you child can still get an
      education. Public education has been under attack for decades in this country
      by the radical right because public schools don’t teach Christianity to your
      children and it enables people like Barack Obama to work hard, gain
      scholarships, and eventually become President of the United States.

      21. Jail/Prison System – Many murders and criminals are behind bars right now and not out on the streets because of our taxpayer-funded, federal and state run jails and prisons. Taxpayer money is collected and used
      to help protect all of society from murders, molesters, rapist, etc. I know
      there’s a lot of disagreement and controversy about how to handle our prison
      system, but I think we can all agree that serial killers should not be freed
      into society. There are also many private prisons in the United States.
      However, they have a higher escape rate than their socialist counterpart.
      Besides, don’t you see the bad incentives in having a private prison system
      that profits from having people in prison? Since a business’s top goal is to
      make more money than the year before, the only feasible agenda would be to get
      everyone in prison.

      22. Corporate/Business
      Subsidies – This is the type of socialism that is
      acceptable in the Republican party. You tax dollars are given to big
      corporations to do things they should be doing anyway out of morals and ethics.

      Like not sending jobs overseas and hiring people. Wouldn’t you like a nice big
      check just for not breaking the law? To be fair though, many businesses do earn their subsidies by advancing green technology and practice, donating to
      charity, helping communities, etc. They aren’t all bad. People just get mad
      when big billionaire oil companies get billions of their taxpayer dollars while
      they’re paying $4 at the pump. For the corporations that don’t earn their
      subsidies other than donating to their very own political party, it’s merely
      welfare. Though however you look at it, it is socialism.

      23. Veteran’s (VA)Health Care – Our soldiers bravely go to foreign countries and risk their lives at the request of their government and the American people. For those who survive, we as a country feel committed and obligated to ensure that they have everything they need for the rest of their lives for their service to us in which we could never fully repay. So we the taxpayers fund their health care in a government-run single-payer system for veterans. Many soldiers return with mental and/or physical health issues that would cost them thousands in a private health care plan. Socialism funds the military, the overall war, and also takes care of our troops when they return home.

      24. Public Parks – Like going to the park on a sunny day? Just being able
      to walk right in, or at the worse pay a small fee? This is once again the work
      of socialism. If it were private, it wouldn’t be a park, it would be someones
      back yard. That small or non-existent fee will turn into a $15 fee faster than
      you can say “No Trespassing”.

      25. All Elected Government Officials –
      From the Supreme Court, to the President of the United States and all the way
      down to the County Dog Catcher, taxpayers pay their salary and provide the
      funding for them to do their job. We pay for every aspect of their job. So in a
      sense, I guess you could say our whole country is run on socialism.

      26. Food Stamps – Republicans fill with bitter contempt knowing that our
      government at the expense of the taxpayer is giving poor people money to buy food they couldn’t otherwise afford. This, like welfare, is what the right
      thinks socialism is all about, along with mass murder. However, just like
      corporate welfare, welfare is socialism. I’ll just end this one with a quick
      story. I have been down and out in periods of my life and sought assistance via food stamps. Even though I was what anyone would consider poor, I was not poor enough to get food stamps. Which means people who do get them, must really, really need them. As far as my personal experience, they weren’t thrown around like candy the way the right would have you believe.

      27. Sewer System – Do you like having a sewer system to remove waste and
      prevent pollution and disease from seeping into our environment? Thank the
      taxpayers of America and the socialist system it operates in.

      28. Medicare – Medicare is one of the most liked socialist programs
      in America. Most of us don’t mind paying taxes to provide our senior citizens
      with health care and hope the next generation will do the same for us. If you
      don’t believe me, just look at almost any poll. Most seniors would not be able
      to afford private health care. So this form of socialism is a life saver for
      this nation’s grandparents and senior citizens.

      29. Court System – Whether it’s the murder trial of the century or a case
      in a small claims court, the taxpayers of America fully fund our courts and
      legal process. You may pay for your own lawyer, but the courtroom, judge, and jury is paid for through socialist means.

      30. Bird Flu Vaccine – You don’t have bird flu right now and probably aren’t
      worried about it because our federal government used taxpayer funds to pump vaccines all over America.

      31. G.I. Bill – The G.I. bill allows veterans to pursue an education by using taxpayer dollars to help them pay for most of their schooling. It also
      helps them with loans, savings, and unemployment benefits.

      32. Hoover Dam – Remember when our country use to build things? Our
      government built the Hoover Dam using taxpayer funds. It is now a vital source of power for the west coast.

      33. State/City Zoos – American families have been going to the zoo for
      generations. A place where kids and adults can have fun seeing creatures and animals from all over the world and learn at the same time. Many zoos are ran by the state and/or city, using taxpayer funds to operate and even bring the animals to the zoo.

      34. IRS – I know, the IRS is about as popular and well liked in America as a hemorrhoid, but think about it. The IRS is the reason that we have
      anything. The IRS collects taxpayer funds for the federal government. The
      government then dispenses these funds to our military, states, and social
      programs. If there is no one collecting taxes, no one will pay them. If no one
      pays taxes, our country shuts down. Without money to operate, nothing operates. This may sound like a good thing to some radical republicans, but for those of us with sense, we know this means anarchy in the USA. The IRS gets a bad rap because if you don’t pay your taxes or owe them money, they can be ruthless. Like everything else, the IRS is not perfect, but without them we literally have no country or no means to run it.

      35. Free Lunch Program – Some children are living in poverty by no fault of their own. I’m not saying it is even their parents fault, but you surely cannot blame a child for the situation they are born into. In most if
      not all states, there are programs where children who live in poor households
      can receive school lunch for free. The taxpayers of the state pay for this.
      Sounds like socialism to me, and also the moral and Christian thing to do.

      36. The Pentagon – Our defense system in America is a socialist system
      from top to bottom. We as taxpayers fund the pentagon completely.

      37. Medicaid – Our government uses taxpayer funds to provide health
      care for low-income people. Republicans, the compassionate Christians that they are, absolutely hate this program. What they fail to understand is that when people can’t afford to pay their outrageous medical bills, they don’t. This
      bill does not disappear. The loss that the insurance company, doctor’s office,
      or hospital takes gets passed down to everyone else. So covering people and
      giving them a low-income option reduces costs for them and everyone else. This
      is the main argument behind a health care mandate. It’s not to force you to buy
      health care out of cruelty. If everyone is covered, costs drop for everyone. If
      you have no compassion for the uninsured, you can at least understand the
      rational in a selfish sense.

      38. FDA – The Food and Drug Administration is far from perfect.
      It is infested with corporate corruption and they have been wrong many, many
      times. Countless times they have approved things that they later have to
      apologize for and have banned things that would have helped people. However, they have also stopped many harmful foods and products from being sold to the public and protect us everyday from poisons being disguised as products. While not perfect, they are needed to prevent harmful food and drugs from being sold to you and you family. Without them, corporations can send whatever they want to your supermarkets and drug stores without any testing or evaluation. I don’t mind my taxes going towards a middle man to inspect the safety of the products we are being sold everyday.

      39. Health Care for 9/11 Rescue Workers –
      After beating back GOP obstruction, Democrats finally passed a bill last year
      to allow government to help 9/11 rescue worker’s with their health care after
      many came down with horrible lung diseases from the toxins they breathed in
      rescuing people from smoldering buildings. These brave citizens risked their
      lives and health to help complete strangers. They deserve more, but covering
      their health care is a good start.

      • So correct! The root of the anger of the Right Wing has ALWAYS

        been the requirement to pay taxes. To the anti-tax crowd, my response has never changed: “If you do not want to pay taxes, you should not have to pay a dime but you are either all the way in, paying all taxes, or all the way out paying none. If you choose the latter and are caught on public roads, using public hospitals and schools, libraries, Post Offices, etc. you will be jailed.

        • Exactly! And I have a similar feeling for people who are against ACA’s requirement that they purchase health insurance. It’s my feeling that them not purchasing health insurance is okay, provided they sign a waiver which states: That if at any time, I become critically ill or injured, such that I would clearly not be able to afford to pay for the medical care I need, I give full permission to any and every health professional to refuse to provide me or my family with medical treatment. If that I may well die – so be it.

    • Here’s 40 to 75

      40. Swine Flu Vaccine – Do you have swine flu right now? Then
      thank government and the socialist structure.

      41. Disability Insurance (SSDI) –
      For those who are disabled and cannot work, our government provides an income for them via taxpayer dollars as opposed to the other option of letting them starve to death.

      42. Town/State Run Beaches – Like going to the beach? Like it when the beach is clean and safe? Like having lifeguards on staff in case of an emergency? Then once again, thank the taxpayers and the socialist structure that makes it all possible.

      43. Corporate Bailouts/Welfare – The whole point of this post is to prove that we ALL use, benefit from, and like socialism. This example is a form of socialism that the republicans not only like, but fight tooth and nail for. They don’t like it when socialism is used for working/poor people, but when it’s for millionaires and their corporate donors, socialism becomes as American as apple pie. The middle/working class who are the majority of taxpayers pay for welfare for corporations and people who have more money than all of us combined. When our government bails out a bank or gives a subsidy to a billion dollar corporation, you are paying for it.

      44. State Construction – Ever see those construction workers in your town fixing potholes, erecting buildings, repaving highways and roads, and fixing things all over town? They themselves and the work they do is taxpayer-funded state socialism.

      45. Unemployment Insurance – All your working life, you pay payroll
      taxes. Some of these taxes go toward a program that temporarily provides for
      people who lost their jobs until they can find another one. You pay for others,
      others pay for you. Especially these days, you never know when you might lose your job. You may need temporary assistance until you get back on your feet.The government recognizes this. UI also keeps the economy moving in times of recess on because people still have some money in their pockets to buy goods and promote demand.

      46. City/Metro Buses – If you lack transportation, you can catch a city bus.
      Taxpayer funds and the fee you pay to take the bus make it possible for
      millions of people to go to work.

      47. WIC – WIC is a federally funded program to assist women, infants, and children. WIC helps low-income families by providing funding for nutrition, education, and health care for children.

      48. State Snow Removal – Even though sometimes it may take them
      longer than you like to get to your street, do you like having snow plow
      service to clear our roads and highways in the winter? This is a state
      socialist taxpayer-funded service.

      49. PBS (Public Broadcasting Service) –
      PBS operates on donations and government funding. The provide non-partisan news and information to the public. They are the home of Sesame Street, Masterpiece Theater, and The Antiques Roadshow. Surveys show that they are literally the most trusted name in news. I wonder how Fox feels about that?

      50. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) –
      The CDC helps promote and enact the health and safety of the public along with helping to prevent and control illness and disease. The CDC is a government program that operates on taxpayer funding.

      51. Welfare – Is there anything the republicans hate more? Of course
      I’m talking about the welfare that goes to poor people. Corporate welfare is
      not only accepted in the republican Kabul, but it’s mandatory that we give our
      tax dollars to billionaires and not question the logic of it. Though if you
      look at it realistically and not through the red scare glasses in which the
      right sees the world, welfare helps the economy. As I’ve said many times, when poor people have money in their pocket, they buy things made and sold by companies. This creates a demand. To keep up with demand, businesses must hire to keep up. If you yanked everyone who is on welfare off of it tomorrow, the economy would take a blow and lose jobs due to the down tick in consumer demand because we just took what little money they had away.

      52. Public Street Lighting – Like being able to see at night when you
      walk or drive? Thank Socialism.

      53. FEMA – If Disaster strikes, FEMA is there to help pick up the pieces. As a part of homeland security and an agency of the federal government, they use taxpayer dollars to help cities, states, and towns recover and rebuild. I don’t know to many private companies that could assist in disaster relief and ask nothing in return. Thank God for socialism.

      54. Public Defenders – Ever been in trouble and couldn’t afford a lawyer?
      Well the taxpayers and the government make sure you still get epresentation.

      55. S-CHIP (State Children’s Health Insurance Program) – S-CHIP is a
      program that matches funds to states for health insurance for children in
      families that cannot afford insurance but make too much to qualify for
      Medicaid. Your tax dollars go towards covering uninsured children, is that so
      wrong?

      56. Amtrak – Amtrak transports tens of millions of passengers a year in 46 states and three Canadian Providences. It is owned by the federal
      government and your tax dollars are used to fund it. All aboard!!

      57. NPR – National Public Radio operates on private and federal funding along with public donations. NPR has been one of the most trusted news
      sources in America for over 40 years.

      58. The Department of Homeland Security –
      Created after the terrorist attacks on 9/11, this heavily federally funded
      department of the U.S. government helps protect us from future terrorist
      attacks. This is the third largest department within the United States
      government.

      59. OSHA – Do you have a safe and healthy workplace that provides
      training, outreach, education, and assistance? Thank OSHA! Brought to you by the taxpayers of America and socialism.

      60. State and National Monuments –
      The Lincoln Memorial. Mount Rushmore. The D.C. National Mall. All brought to you and maintained with your tax dollars. Socialism is patriotic?

      61. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) – The USDA enforces regulations on the farming, agriculture, and food industries to ensure food safety, natural resources, and hunger worldwide and in the United States. Your tax dollars are used to help keep what you are eating safe and even feed those who are not eating.

      62. Government Scholarships – if you work hard in school and show true potential, our government will give you a scholarship towards college so you can advance your education. Your tax dollars have been used to send future doctors, lawyers, scientists, and even presidents of the United States to college.

      63. Department of Health and Human Service –
      The overall goal of HHS is to promote, implement, and ensure the health of the American people. Your tax dollars are used to do this. Government looking out for the well being of it’s people, imagine that!

      64. Census Bureau – Every ten years, our government collects data about
      our people and economy, to better serve and represent us. From the forms that are sent to your home for you to fill out and send back in and to the census worker who shows up and kindly asks you to fill out the form if you don’t send it in, all taxpayer funded socialism. The information collected is used to better understand the economic situation and population in your area. Not to enslave you in a FEMA camp.

      65. Department of Energy – This taxpayer funded cabinet of the federal government oversees nuclear weapons, nuclear reactors, energy conservation, radioactive waste disposal, and energy production. To those of you who care about our environment and would rather not witness a nuclear holocaust might consider this money well spent.

      66. Customs and Border Protection –
      the CBP is the largest law enforcement agency in America. This is big
      government that republicans actually do like because they don’t like Mexicans
      immigrating to our country like our ancestors did. However, this taxpayer
      funded, socialist agency of the federal government regulates trade, imports,
      and immigration.

      67. Department of Education – This cabinet of the federal government
      is actually the smallest. They administer and oversee federal assistance to
      education. They also collect data and enforce federal laws and regulations
      involving education. Even though the right thinks that this department is
      indoctrinating your children, they actually have no control over curriculum or
      standards.

      68. Secret Service – Your tax dollars are used to provide highly-trained,
      skilled professional bodyguards to protect the President of the United States.

      69. Peace Corps – The Peace Corps is a volunteer program run by the
      government that helps people outside of the US to understand our culture as
      well as helping us learn about other cultures. However they are more well known for their work with economic and social development in less-fortunate
      countries. Sounds very Christian for being a socialist program, huh?

      70. Department of Justice – The DOJ is responsible for enforcing the
      law. Socialism keeps our civilization intact.

      71. National Weather Service – Like knowing when a storm, tornado,
      earthquake, or snow is coming? Socialism makes this possible and available to everyone.

      72. The White House – Our taxpayer dollars through a socialist means pays
      for the house that the president and his family live in during a presidents
      time in office.

      73. Government – Like it or not, our country would not be a country
      without a government. Every single day, government on state and local levels
      serve us in ways we simply take for granted. Government as an entity operates and functions on our tax dollars through a socialist structured funding system. From the military down to the county dog catcher, socialism turns the wheels that make our society function.

      74. Law – Laws and rules make our democracy possible. Remove these laws and you have sheer anarchy. Laws do not appear out of thin air. To have law, you need a government. You need elected lawmakers to make the laws
      and a government to implement and enforce them. Socialism is responsible for every law in this country. Without our government and lawmakers which exist thanks to socialism, there would be no laws. So the laws themselves, are
      enforced and implemented thanks to socialism.

      75. Civilization – As an American citizen, you enjoy freedoms that many
      in other countries do not. Like anything else in this world, our government is
      not perfect, but you should be thankful everyday that your country has a
      government that feels an obligation to serve the people and protect their
      rights and freedoms. This is completely possible because of government, taxes, and socialism. Do you think the private sector would do a better job of
      governing our country? Do you think corporations would enact laws to help
      protect and serve you and your family or them and their profits? The reason you can read this blog and the reason I can write it whether you agree with it or not is because of the freedoms we have here in America enforced and protected through socialist means. Our entire civilization depends on us being a people united. Socialism is a glue that binds us together and makes possible the things that we could not accomplish as individuals working against each other.

  3. It depends on what he proposes and our interpretation of socialism. I doubt he will propose nationalizing industry, a government takeover, or anything of the sort. If his focus is on protecting and improving social programs such as Social Security, MEDICARE, and the ACA he will be on solid ground. In fact, I doubt the GOP will even touch him on those subjects. The GOP attacks, if Bernie is the Dem nominee, will be subtle comments about his age, and his lack of foreign policy experience. The latter will be the centerpiece of what is likely to be a barrage of GOP attacks, with special emphasis on fear as the centerpiece of their demagoguery.

    • I think one reason Sanders is gaining is because so many Americans believe that Hillary is not honest or trust worthy. We need more candidates from the Democrats. If we can’t find better candidates than a communist or a person that believes she is above the law, we are in trouble.

    • As far as foreign policy goes, anyone in the White House is going to be surrounding themselves with policy experts in every area including foreign policy. How much foreign policy experience and expertise do most Presidents have when assuming office? Not much for most of them. Bernie has been around long enough that age alone gives him a bit of a leg up in that area.

      His age is a concern but look at the ages of Senators and Congresspeople these days. There are a number in their early 80’s or very close to it. It’s become a gerontocracy. He’d be 82 at the end of two terms so it’s doable as long as his health holds up. He may also only choose to serve one term. His possible VP of Elizabeth Warren(?) taking over is a nice thought.

      • Reagan was 69 when he became President, and he served two terms. Nobody was too concerned about his age then, even when he relied on Nancy whispering answers to questions, and his dementia was clearly evident to the most casual observer. That, however, will not stop Republicans from attacking Bernie because of his age, even though he exhibits a keen awareness of issues important to most Americans, and has no problem articulating solutions. Fear has always been one of the GOP’s most important tools to demonize and destroy opponents.

  4. The Republicans have used the word “socialist” and people who have no curiosity to understand what it means, feel confident to use it as a pejorative.

    I have realize that the Republicans are the true socialists, using their ideas, of centralizing how people should behave and live when it suits their agenda.

    1. Socialism with womens’ choice
    2. Socialism with whom we marry
    3. Socialism with gun issues
    4. Socialism with religion
    5. Socialism with education
    6. Socialism with health care
    7. Socialism with patriotism

  5. Switzerland is the oldest continuous Democracy on the planet still in existence. I also has the 4th highest per capita GDP on the planet. It also has one of the greatest social safety net structures known to man. Don’t tell me so-called “Socialism” doesn’t work.

    • Another nincompoop with little stars in his eyes,… and little pebbles for a brain.
      Let me enlighten you: “Reagan ‘ Capitalism is not, never was, incompatible with a social safety net, but the CODE WORD you socialists miss is “SAFETY” net, e.i., for extreme hardship cases and NOT so that the government takes from the rich to give to (undeserving) poor (read itresponsible, lazy, and unwilling to work).
      You stand corrected, my friend!!

      • Just how much welfare goes to lazy people who don’t want to work? My guess you don’t have a clue. The Welfare Queen was a myth made up by Reagan. Most of the money goes to the old, children, and the working poor. If you want to cut welfare spending, raise the minimum wage so all those Walmart employees can get off it. Also pay our armed forces so they don’t need food stamps. Just because you are poor doesn’t mean you don’t work. While you are at it set up daycare so single mothers can go to work with out having to pay everything they make for childcare.

      • And given that 90% of food stamps and welfare dollars go to Republican led states and districts of blue states, it’s BY FAR conservatives that are sucking all that ‘safety net stuff’.!!!!!!!!!!! (Of the 456 counties that get BY FAR the most federal welfare, 421 of those counties – more than 90% voted for Mitt Romney in the 2012 election.)

        • Dependent: As always, you, just as Obama, are obfuscating the issues.
          FYI:
          10 Poorest Cities in America and how did it happen?
          City, State, % of People Below the Poverty Level
          1. Detroit , MI 32.5%
          2. Buffalo , NY 29.9%
          3. Cincinnati , OH 27.8%
          4. Cleveland , OH 27.0%
          5. Miami , FL 26.9%
          6. St. Louis , MO 26.8%
          7. El Paso , TX 26.4%
          8. Milwaukee , WI 26.2%
          9. Philadelphia , PA 25.1%
          10. Newark , NJ 24.2%
          What do the top ten cities (over 250,000) with the highest poverty rate all have in common?
          Detroit , MI (1st on the poverty rate list) hasn’t elected a Republican mayor since 1961
          Buffalo , NY (2nd) hasn’t elected one since 1954
          Cincinnati , OH – (3rd) since 1984
          Cleveland , OH – (4th) since 1989
          Miami , FL – (5th) has never had a Republican mayor
          St. Louis , MO – (6th) since 1949
          El Paso , TX – (7th) has never had a Republican mayor
          Milwaukee , WI – (8th) since 1908
          Philadelphia , PA – (9th) since 1952
          Newark , NJ – (10th) since 1907
          You stand corrected.

          • About half of those cities you listed are in states that usually or always have Republican governance. Beyond that, governmental ignorance and abandonment of the cities is a huge factor.

            It seems like candidates for national office can ignore urban America without paying a political price any more. The cities have been abandoned. Neither party sees much value in making this issue part of their campaign.

            Gerrymandering has intensified this process because the number of congressional members representing cities has dramatically declined while the number representing suburbs has been increasing. The suburban congressional members just don’t have the motivation to vote for spending their constituent’s tax dollars to alleviate, or at least reduce, many urban problems. Some of these politicians make entire careers out of protecting their constituents from the spillover of urban social disorder.

            At some point federal policy makers have got to recognize that rebuilding urban neighbourhoods requires direct investment to compensate for decades of disinvestment.

    • It is also occupied primarily by the Swiss. They don’t have the diversity that exists in the US – you know, diversity, that concept liberals tell us is a good thing.

      • You have obviously never lived there. I am a Swiss national. The cities of Zurich and Geneva are among the most diversified on the planet. Educate yourself before you post.

  6. Bush, not Obama, golfed with his comrade, Vladimir Putin!
    The Koch brothers built Putin’s oil drilling equipment!
    Perfectly clear?

  7. 99.9% of Republicans can’t distinguish between Communism, Socialism, Nazism and Fascism; they think they are all exactly the same. They can’t be bothered to look it up on Google and even if they did, the concepts are far too hard for them to grasp. Better for them, that they get their definitions from Limbaugh and Fox news, that way they don’t have to comprehend or think.

    • Another one.
      Google, my friend, is where you looked up the definitions yourself, 10 minutes ago.
      Another leftist/liberal/socialist/”progressive”/populist nincompoop.
      I know your ilk.

      • The right wing people who post on this sight and many others do not understand the difference between Communism and Fascism. They have told me they are the same time and time again. I didn’t have to look them up. The right don’t want facts they are happy with the wisdom they get from people like Rush and Glenn. Now they have Donald to lead them to. What a bunch of sheep’.

        • Bobbo: Even though I wasn’t talking to you, I have decided to answer your inane post.
          You say that the Right are happy with Rush’s and Glenn’s wisdom.
          So, let me ask you about several things that exemplify the “wisdom” of you leftist/liberal/socialist/”progressive”/populist retards:
          1) Liberals gave us this: You can get arrested for hunting or fishing without a license, but not for being in the
          country illegally…what idiots.
          2) You idiots gave us this: You have to get your parent’s permission to go on a field trip or to take an aspirin in
          school, but not to get an abortion…. what idiots.
          3) You retards gave us this: You have to show identification to board an airplane, cash a check, buy liquor or check
          out a library book, but not to vote…. what retards.
          4) You idiots gave us this: In NYC, you can buy two 16-ounce sodas, but not a 24-ounce soda because 24-ounces of a sugary drink might make you fat…. what complete idiots.
          5) You half-brains gave us this: An 80-year-old woman can be strip-searched by the TSA but a woman in a hijab is
          only subject to having her neck and head searched… DUH !!
          6) You liberal retards gave us this: Your government believes that the best way to eradicate trillions of dollars of debt is to spend trillions more…. what complete retards.
          7) You nincompoops gave us this: Hard work and success are met with higher taxes and more government intrusion, while not working is rewarded with EBT cards, WIC checks, Medicaid, subsidized housing and free cell phones… what complete nincompoops!!
          Got it now, you ignoramus?
          No ?!
          I’ll explain it again, very slowly, so that even you can understand it. But not now.

          • You are get confused a lot. You can’t
            keep straight rule from laws. There is no law saying that schools
            have to get your permission for anything, It’s to keep from being
            sued. If you got arrested for fishing or hunting with out a license
            it because you gave the game warden a hard time. You get a ticket for that and pay a fine. There is no law saying you must show ID to cash a check, company rules. Showing ID to get on a plane and the whole homeland security thing was passed under GW so don’t blame the libs for that one. If you work for your money they expect you to pay your fair share of taxes, if someone else works for your money the expect
            a bigger share. As I have said, if you want to cut back on welfare raise minimum wage so that the working poor doesn’t need it. Our Immigration laws do not work. Being in this country illegally is the same level of crime as speeding. Don’t blame law enforcement for treating it the same. And don’t blame NY NY for being crazy, there is something in the water that makes them do stupid things. Of all the stupid laws in the world the soda ban is one of the dumbest. Oh and the free cell phone come from the phone companies not the government. It’s part of their payback for ripping us off. The people like Rush and Glenn like to mislead you to keep you mad so you will stay tuned. Trump is just a jerk who has more money then brains.

          • Ha, ha, bobbo !!
            Your funny “explanations” for everything at I said is, to say the least, ludicrous.
            But, then again, what I to be expected from you leftist liberals? Easy answers/slogans to complex issues, that’s what
            You, and your fellow leftist/liberal simpletons constitute the stupid voters Gruber was alluding to….
            LOL !!!

          • Well I will consider the source, since you are the one with out the basic understanding of the world. You poor little thing, the big bad world is out to get you with their rules. Don’t you worry Rush will tell you what to think. Donald Trump will run the country like he runs his business, a dictator.

          • Bubbastuff:
            Your “basic understanding of the world” can be summarized with your idol Hil-LIAR-y Cling-on’s words as follows:

            “Don’t let anybody tell you that it’s corporations and businesses that create jobs. You know that old theory, trickle-down economics. That has been tried; that has failed. It has failed rather spectacularly.”

            Don’t you worry, bubba, Obama, Biden, Bill and Hil-LIAR-y Cling-0n and Nancy Pelosi will tell YOU what to think (since it has become obvious to everybody that you can’t think on your own).

          • You are truly a joke, Have I said anything about Democrats. No I have simply pointed out that you don’t know a rule from a law, what is state laws from federal law, who passed the law or what the law says. I guess you just like to wine. I also pointed out that your thinking is unclear. You are looking for some one to blame for your own failings. I’m a free thinker and make my own mind on things based on facts unlike many who believe everything they are told by their overlords.

          • stuffed up bobbie:
            In typical leftist/liberal/socialist/”progressive”/populist nincomPOOP fashion, you deflect and deny, deflect and deny.
            “Have I said anything about Democrats”??
            You are the joke and joker here, bobbie.
            …. AND a coward who refuses to acknowledge reality.
            You really, really think you can supply easy answers/slogans to complex issues, you court jester?
            Again, you, and your fellow leftist/liberal simpletons constitute the stupid voters Gruber was alluding to….

          • You really don’t like having someone point out that you haven’t a clue about what you are saying really bothers you. Pointing out the fact that you are wrong doesn’t make me a Democrat or even a liberal. When you are wrong you are wrong. Real
            facts are not right or left they just are. You have no real fact just
            bluster.

          • With all the wind you put out there must be lost of people flying them near you. My mind might be simple but at least I have one, Mr. Scarecrow.

      • Good for me that I received an actual education from a U.K. private school (Public school), where we learned Latin, Greek and actual World history, from, you know BEFORE the USA even existed.!! I know, SHOCK HORROR!

        We even learned how the World operated and all about the Crimean War and how WW1 and WW2 began. We also learned about the fall of the Russian Monarchy and its replacement by, Trotskyists, Leninists, Stalinists etc.; this led to us actually having a CLUE about what Communism is, what Socialism is and where Nazism came from, including the Nazi’s views on Eugenics (which originated in the USA by the way). It also led us to realize that the Republicans in the USA are denser than most people’s pets but less willing to learn and more resistant to facts.

        If only you could fathom the depth of the pity those of us who are actually educated feel for you poor buggers.

        • Hey Mort:
          A few items I wanted to run through you, my friend:
          1) To my good fortune, such a “learned” person as you (even though you do not specify if your magnificent academic education was acquired in high school or at an actual university) saw fit to feel pity for a “poor bugger” like me who only has a Masters Degree in Structural Engineering. Thank you for your magnanimity !
          2) I was also much impressed by your knowledge of Communism, Socialism and Nazism and their roots (although you did not indicate your actual social/political/economic opinions about each “ism”, but that is OK). That you possess that kind of knowledge certainly makes me and so many conservatives complete “poor buggers”.
          3) The relevance of the (true) fact that eugenics (small “e”, you “educated” Brit) originated in the US escapes me; but, again, if such a learned fellow as you thinks it is relevant, it must be!!
          4) I stand in awe of the fact that those of you who are (feel ?) “actually educated” can have a bugger for a brain and still be able to write a post on this site.
          I and my ignorance stand corrected.
          P.S. – Even though socialism has never worked in practice, I am now sure that such a learned and enlightened British-educated leftist/liberal man (woman?) as you, with your incredible knowledge about history, would actually FIND a way to make poor people (to you, the poor buggers) “rich” by making rich people (to you, the rich buggers) poor….
          P.S.2. – My warmest regards to your fellow MENSA Club Members !

          • And yet your Masters degree hasn’t given you a lick of common sense. I assume your Masters degree didn’t include a single piece of World history, because you seem to be utterly clueless about the subject at hand, namely Socialism, Communism etc.

            One would assume that a Man as erudite as you WOULD know these things and yet you clearly don’t. Did you get your Masters from Oral Roberts University maybe? You also fail to realize that you STILL haven’t show you understand that Obama AND sanders are NOWHERE near being Socialists; or maybe you do and you’re just being disingenuous.. I assume you know that word is a polite way of saying liar.

            Either way, if you are actually educated, you have wasted it, since you seem to be unable to grasp basic political definitions; as I previously stated, the Republican Party is a complete joke to everyone with a brain that isn’t a trickle-down loving, science denying, Earth is only 6,000 year old claiming dimwit. The Republican Party manages to confirm every single one of the worst stereotypes foisted upon it by its detractors and y aren’t exactly helping the cause, Mr. Masters degree from Podunk University.

            Oh, that’s right, you wanted to know where I got my degrees. My first was from Oxford, my second was from Stanford (computer science) and my multiple U.S. patents and British patents? Well they were earned in encryption technology; specifically in the area of entropy pool seeding and initialization vector technology.. You know, how you start a string of random numbers for the purposes of encrypting data.

            So, all you have done is proven that not only do you NOT know WTF Socialism is and how it differs from Communism, Trotskyism etc., you have shown that you can’t even answer the question posed; you, like your fellow undereducated dimwits in the U.S. Republican Party are truly a dying breed and the rest of the civilized World is quite thankful of that.

          • Hey Morty boy:
            Confirmed: you are a simpleton who has this psychological “need” to tell the world how over-learned and under-appreciated they are (witness your uncontrollable urge to tell everybody who is listening, nobody in this case, about your Oxford and Stanford “degrees”, you simpleton).
            It is all a clear symptom of an inferiority complex, common in simpletons like you, who pretend to address and “fix” very complex issues with very simplistic slogans and beatitudes, and who, as your assumptions about me show, ascribe attitudes and beliefs to other people that are just plain false.
            For example (I know, I know, simple-minded fellows can not understand without examples, don’t you worry, old chap!), you make the following WRONG assumptions:
            1) That I am not aware of the fact that Obama-type/liberal/leftist socialism is not quite the same as full-blown “Socialism” a la Castro Cuba. But of course!
            2) That I am as confused as you are about the difference between just having acquired “knowledge” and being an educated person.
            3) That I am as confused as you are about the big difference between being “wealthy” and having plenty of money.
            4) That I am as confused as you are about the big difference between being “broke” and being POOR.
            5) That the fact that I am a fervent fiscally conservative person does not necessarily make me a socially conservative person (and much less an “Earth-is-6,000-years-old” fanatic.

            In summary, old chap, if your one and only point was that Obama-type “lite” socialism is nowhere near traditional “Socialism”, I agree. But if your secondary point was that Obama-type “lite” socialism will lead to greater growth and prosperity for this great Nation of ours (the USA, not Britain, you “educated” dimwit !), then, again,
            …. your slip is showing!!

          • You made the mistake of asking the question sonny boy. I answered. Sorry it makes you feel less educated than I. It boggles ones mind that someone such as you, can decend into writing such a hodgepodge of messy rot. Again, it proves my point. I notice you failed to tell us what University YOU attended. I suspect it’s an inferior one, maybe second or even third tier?

            You did indeed confirm your inferiority complex, when it comes to education.

            Thanks for being the poster boy for those Republicans who claim to be educated, yet can’t show anything that might confirm that fact. Your acceptance of the fact that Obama ISN’T a Socialist might be viewed as a concession that all the Republican talk of “socialism” comes from a lack of education and understanding.

            Having spent the last 25 years or so, splitting my time between the U.K. And the USA, I have watched with astonishment as the lunatics took over the asylum. The Republican Party is doomed in the long term. As someone who voted for Margaret Thatcher (when we are young, we sometimes do stupid things) I can tell you that the right-wing approach now being taken by Republicans will see you hanged with the rope you purchased yourselves.

            These are my final words on this subject; all I can hope is that someone within the Republican machine, finally roots out those who are responsible for the Republicans becoming, in the words of that loon, Bobby Jindal ” the party of stupid.”

          • Morty, you naughty simpleton:

            1) It’s “deScend”, not “decend”, you “educated” slob.

            2) Contrary to you, I do not feel the urge (again, your
            inferiority complex, my dumb friend) to brag about my Alma Mater. Suffice to
            say, it’s one of the 8 Ivy League schools (sorry, chump, only 8 and Stanford is
            not in that “league”….)

            3) You at least admit to having voted for The Iron Lady.
            I guess that was the ONLY sane, smart vote in your sad life.

            4) You are as stolid and dense as that compatriot of
            yours, Piers Morgan.

            You are a sorry, sad and pathetic figure: “Educated” but DUMB as a box
            of nails ….

            Morty, you naughty boy:
            1) It’s “deScend”, not “decend”, you “educated” slob.
            2) Contrary to you, I do not feel the urge (again, your inferiority complex, my dumb friend) to brag about my Alma Mater (suffice to say, it’s one of the 8 “Ivy League” schools (sorry, chump, Stanford is not in that “league”….)

          • Morty, you naughty simpleton:

            1) It’s “deScend”, not “decend”, you “educated” slob.

            2) Contrary to you, I do not feel the urge (again, your
            inferiority complex, my dumb friend) to brag about my Alma Mater. Suffice to
            say, it’s one of the 8 Ivy League schools (sorry, chump, only 8 and Stanford is
            not in that “league”….)

            3) You at least admit to having voted for The Iron Lady.
            I guess that was the ONLY sane, smart vote in your sad life.

            4) You are as stolid and dense as that compatriot of
            yours, Piers Morgan.

            You are a sorry, sad and pathetic figure: “Educated” but DUMB as a box
            of nails ….

  8. Denmark, a mixed economy, surveys as having the happiest citizens on the planet.

    The U.S., long #4, became #5 and now #25. The difference is all in public policy.

    Neither party and no group of voters can keep mouthing “We’re #1” in the face of that.

    When Republicans contrive fear of “socialism”, they ask voters to choose.

    They ask voters to choose to be less happy each year, both abstractly and in comparison to the rest of the first world, in order that the very wealthy (most of whom derive no happiness at all from each additional dollar) gain only slight benefit.

    For them, this is a game but for everyone else it is real life.

    Why do Republican voters want everyone, including themselves to be less happy?

    • Another one.
      Do you realize that going, as you claim, from # 5 to # 20 has happened under Obama’s watch? Does that mean that Obama is a Republican?
      LOL!!!!

      • Actually, presidents don’t control taxation or social support legislation. The Congress – which we all know is Republican – controls that.

        • Typical criminally NAIVE guy.
          Remember:
          1) DemocRATS passed Obamacare without ANY, not even one, Republican vote.
          2) To you, my naive friend, it’s all the Republicans’ “fault”.
          Oh brother, another one.

          • You seem to have a personality disorder. Maybe you should see a psychiatrist and figure yourself out.

          • And maybe you should visit your asylum doctor to find out about why you are so intellectually challenged.

          • The ACA is the only big Bill that has gotten through thanks to the republicans. Now they have both the house and the senate and are still only naming post offices. They are 1/4 the way through the 114th congress and haven’t passed 30 bills yet.

          • Thank you, Louis Allen, for pointing out the best thing that has been passed this Century was due solely to Democrats.

      • Actually, Louis Allen, by traditional USA political standards before the uber-right slant Obama is a Republican but today’s right wing standards would rank EVERY US president since 1900 as leftist.

  9. What Kleefeld didn’t mention is the recent victory of the NDP in the Alberta provincial election. Stephen Harper, Canada’s Prime Minister and a wannabe Republican neocon, is from Alberta, a province that has had a Conservative (well Progressive Conservative) government since the dinosaurs roamed there. Suddenly, the socialists of the NDP have taken over the province that has most of Canada’s oilsands, and the far right isn’t happy. After all, the NDP will probably bring in environmental legislation that may spell the end of the unbridled exploitation of the oilsands and the awful pollution that accompanies it. One reason the Conservatives lost in Alberta is the inability of the Conservative government there, and in Ottawa, to plan for a drop in the price of oil. Stephen Harper, who claims to be an economist, had no Plan B for falling oil prices. Today, eight of the ten provincial governments in Canada are either Liberal or NDP. The federal Conservatives will probably lose the election in October; you can tell because a lot of high-profile Conservative members of Parliament are either resigning now or have decided not to run. Now, as for socialists in America, you’d think the red states would be all for it. After all, they take from Washington more than $1.50 for every dollar they put in . . . from each according to his ability, to each according to his need. Well, that’s communism, I guess, but you get the idea.

    • Another American left winger passing himself as Canadian.
      Did Lenore Whittaker write that socialist speech for you, dummy?

    • http://www.threehundredeight.com/p/canada.html

      I’m sure you’ve seen the polls Toronto. The NDP have been in first place now for 10 consecutive weeks. The Orange wave hasn’t hit the shores yet. Who knows, maybe the new socialist Prime Minister will be meeting the new socialist President late next year. Mulcair and Sanders. Sounds good to me.

    • Sorry for the redundancy. I didn’t check that the story had that same link to 308. Ipsos-Reid had the Cons in third place last week. They continue to drop. Incidentally, Ekos has the NDP leading in Ontario.

  10. It is fantasy to think anyone who self labels himself as a Socialist is going to be elected President of the United States.

    • Yeah….exactly why this country has been and continues to be in the toilet. There needs to be a desperate change and Sanders is the ONLY one talking about these common sense challenges and solutions to these challenges.

      I don’t care if he labeled himself “humpty-dumpty.” He is the change that is desperately needed in this country. We have played it the other way and this place is falling apart on almost every metric because of it. That is just a FACT.

    • Maybe he needs to think some about how to label himself. He picked up the Socialist label in his late teens and early twenties who most who will amount to something are a bit wild. Maybe he can get someone to do some cost/benefit analysis on all the planks in his platform.

  11. Socialism is an acceptance that the government few can rule the lives of the many, and the only way that the lives of the many can be ruled is by a state of mind produced by fascism. Authoritarian government tells the person who wants the liberty to rule himself that his, or her, opportunity to excel and prosper from hard work is no longer available, and that all the people will get the same reward regardless of hard they work. Socialism is evil because its ideology thrives on using the money obtained through fascism, by heavily taxing the hardest working and smallest part of the population, who derive the greatest profits from their industry, to sustain the lifestyles of the greater indolent part of the population. In socialism, the drive to improve and progress dies with destruction of the free market. This is what Bernie Sanders wants to do. In the 1960s, Sanders was calling himself a Marxist and a communist, which stresses tyranny to impose socialism.

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