Socialism is already here and we love it

Republicans fought socialistic programs put in place by Democrats, that Americans now love and depend on, like Social Security, Medicare and the Affordable Care Act.

Many people fear socialism, but that’s because they misunderstand what it actually is.

Democratic socialism already exists at all levels of our government, and not only do we love it, we can’t do without it and when it’s threatened, we even fight tooth and nail to keep it.

In the U.S., we collectively tax ourselves to pay for programs and projects that benefit quality of life for society as a whole. That’s a form of socialism, and it’s how we live.

Examples of socialism are:

  • Local police, and state and federal law enforcement agencies like the FBI and CIA
  • Public libraries
  • Fire departments
  • Public garbage collection and landfills
  • Emergency medical response systems
  • Construction and maintenance of roads, highways, streets, traffic control systems like stop signals, and safety amenities, like sidewalks and street lighting
  • Free public schools
  • Social Security
  • Medicare
  • Farmer subsidies
  • Federally-funded student loans and grants
  • All branches of the U.S. Military
  • The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
  • The Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
  • Public water systems that assure we have safe drinking water
  • The 1936 Rural Electrification Act that brought electricity to farms and rural areas of America
  • The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which enforces workplace safety
  • Public parks like Lincoln Park, Canyon View Park and the Riverfront Trail system
  • Bridges, dams and irrigation systems
  • Sewer systems
  • Drainage systems
  • Jails and prisons
  • Municipal, state and federal court systems
  • The Veterans Administration and Veterans’ Medical Centers and hospitals
  • Public beaches
  • Medicaid
  • Free school lunch programs
  • Snow removal from streets, roads and highways
  • Public immunization programs
  • The U.S. Postal Service
  • Typical right-wingers misunderstand how socialism benefits Americans every day.

    National Parks

  • The U.S. Mint
  • Federal Deposit Insurance that protects bank accounts of up to $250,000 from loss
  • Inspection of meat, dairy and foods to protect against contamination of our food supply
  • National parks and monuments
  • Free job training programs like the Job Corps, that help turn youth into functioning, tax-paying citizens who benefit society
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that assists victims of hurricanes, floods and fires
  • Embassies that help Americans when they are overseas
  • Elimination of diseases like Typhoid, Polio, Smallpox and Yellow Fever
  • The National Institutes of Health research leading to advances in treating diseases like cancer, Parkinson’s and Alzheimers

No one individual or private company could ever do all this. None of these activities generate a profit, either, which is why government should never be run like a business, since businesses are dependent on making profits to survive. The reason we have government is because government can do what people cannot  do for themselves individually, to improve our quality of life and assure our safety. That’s socialism, and there is clearly a large component of it in our society already.

The taxpayer-funded, government-operated public programs listed above and many others are responsible for the extraordinarily high quality of life we enjoy as Americans.

That is why paying taxes is a patriotic act, and it’s what really makes America great.

 

 

  140 comments for “Socialism is already here and we love it

  1. No, that’s not socialism.

    Socialism is when the workers own the resources and means of production.

    That is the social welfare state, eg social democracy, which exists only under capitalism.

    And yes, it’s democratic socialism b/c socialism is democratic by definition.

    NO European country is socialist: They are all capitalist with a social welfare state.

    • Got that right. Now let’s get the voting rights right so all can vote.

      Identifying Root Cause is the beginning of problem solving…

      Voting is the single most important job a citizen can do. We are now an educated culture. Yet, we haven’t improved our voting systems to keep up with the changes of our populace. We continue to deny people their right to vote.

      We must work on all of the following issues for elections to be fair and consistent in all states, because starting with “Root Cause” is the beginning of problem solving:

      1. Automatic voter registration for all citizens;
      2. Candidate’s picture beside the box to check for voting;
      3. Implementation of Ranked Choice Voting in all states;
      4. All children born are registered with Social Security;
      5. No purging ever, only the citizen has the right to change his location;
      6. Death only reason to purge;
      7. Paper ballots in all elections;
      8. Voter Suppression;
      9. Use the tools of Statistics to Audit all elections;
      10. Gerrymandering by the GOP;
      11. Bring back the Fairness Doctrine;
      12. Russian (Trump/Putin) and outside interference on election;
      13. Abolish the Electoral College as it no longer works;
      14. Watch for linchpins like Jill Stein and Bernie Sanders;
      15. Russian Cyber-Espionage is rampant; We are at War;
      16. Get “Big Money” out of elections;
      17. Citizens United Supreme Court decision needs to be amended;
      18. Supreme Court gutting of the Voting Rights Act in 2013;
      19. At the State level a change to three tier would improve the State elections;
      20. Reinstate the Fairness Doctrine;
      21. Make voting a holiday;
      22. Make voting precincts no larger than 1000 voters;
      23. Media pandering to Misogynist, Orange Lying Pussy Grabber;
      24. Forty years of conservative lies, fear, smears and hate mongering by the GOP.
      25. Amendment to say corporations aren’t people;
      26. Get rid of lobbyists or significantly reduce their power;
      27. Make Election Day a National Holiday and get rid of Columbus Day;
      28. Bar Churches from making political endorsements;

    • On a spectrum, each end displays a perversion. On one end, The left is communism which is the perversion of socialism. On the far right is Capitalism the perversion of Democracy. Before you get all crazy and make the proverbial protest that Capitalism has given us everything we have, I want you to think about current realities. One reality, Capitalism did give us everything but now it is taking it all away and destroying the environment while it does so.

      Communism gave everyone what they needed and then took it all the way with the evolution of Oligarchs in their system. This reality eventually led to the failure of Communism in many countries where it had been entrenched.

      Socialism often gets confused with communism because the once spoken goal of socialism was to own the tools and means of production. That became the domain of Communism and Socialism has evolved to be the lone contributor to the benefit of humans, that is, all benefits outside of the paycheck. That does usually comes from a Capitalist venture.

      Now I am going to put a question to those who have read this far, a very serious one. What is more important a paycheck or all the benefits that have come from modern social efforts in the workplace. Unions, which are an expression of socialist philosophy have made tremendous strides in worker safety, wages and reasonable hours. In my country Unions brought social medicine which for all its warts is something no one would ever vote against.

      Now back to the question I asked. Which is more important the paycheck or the benefits? The actual answer is both are equally important and you would not want to work anywhere where the ripple effect of those benefits is not in effect. This means you don’t have to be in a union job to benefit from the union impact on the working class.

      Political foundations have changed. No longer is socialism the boogyman that brought revolutions over the course of the 20th century. It is a stable and respectable ideal like in Scandinavia where it is called a Social democracy. Shall we call it that which people are crying for here in North America? To understand modern social democracy think of it this way. In a social democracy you can still become wealthy it is just that no one else will be left behind.

      The real definition of Capitalism has changed too. Once the builder of nations it is now that which facilitates the greatest shift and polarization of wealth in modern history. At who’s expense? Yours and mine. And if there is anything I can leave behind in this post it would be to tell you that we are all in this together. Be damned with politics it is us and the planet and its creatures that count.

      This whole conversation would fit better on 70 pages but no space here. You could learn tremendously about the topics I have covered here in 3 short book reviews available on my website if anyone is interested just follow up here. Cheers and stay safe

  2. Well said…People blindly follow without fact checking or critically thinking about the issues, cost, and wastefulness of the government run sectors…Preach it!!

    • I originally replied to Allie!! I need to say this website is disingenuous…I do not think government can do better than the private sector..ever…!! Capitalism has raised more people out of poverty. than any other form of marketing or economies…Educate yourselves..

      • Yup Capitalism has done that raised more people out of poverty than in all of history. And oil has given us longer life spans and convenience that is truly remarkable but their times are done. Why? It is because they have both gone past their beneficial stage and now are actually doing harm to us with pollution to the planet with mass extinctions, poisoned oceans and the threat to democracy polarization of wealth. The problem is we are all brainwashed into thinking that consumption is good and it is endless. If you want to startle yourself into reality just ponder that last statement, it cannot be reconciled. So what do you do? Well, you could take the good and the bad from all political and economic philosophies and be better off especially without the modern hatred and manipulations in Political circles. You would then end up something like Scandanavia. God forbid, where there is a focus on education, health care, and the environment. All the while in such a social democracy people who invent or work hard still get rich the difference is no one else gets left behind. I have several book reviews on this subject matter and if you open your mind they are mind-boggling. Your choice Stay safe and cheers

  3. Golly whomever you are, you are right on & said better then i could even think fast enough to comment!
    Thank you sincerely!
    “3 sides to every ‘story’, his side her side THE TRUTH.
    Thank you again-

  4. Thank Capitalism for the Weekend!

    Productivity and free markets created the weekend

    https://fee.org/articles/thank-capitalism-for-the-weekend/

    “The idea that we need maximum-workweek laws to protect workers is a myth: capitalism has driven down worker hours even in the absence of such laws. Economist Robert Whaples notes that the average workweek has been decreasing since the 1830s.

    By 1938, when President Roosevelt signed the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) mandating a 40-hour workweek, such a law was virtually unnecessary. Over the previous century, market forces had driven the average manufacturing workweek from almost 70 hours to just over 50. Other industries were even lower. In 1930, for instance, railroad workers worked an average of 42.9 hours per week. Coal miners worked an average of only 27 hours.

    Henry Ford implemented a 40-hour workweek in 1926 because he believed that consumers with more free time would buy more products. Other large companies followed suit; just one year later, 262 large companies had adopted five-day workweeks. For the first time, people experienced work-free weekends.

    This shift wasn’t the product of labor legislation. The few scattered wage laws the United States had before the FSLA were rendered largely unenforceable by the Lochner-era Supreme Court, which recognized the legality of any employee-employer contract, regardless of how many hours it was for.

    The truth is that employees aren’t powerless. In a competitive marketplace, they can negotiate with their boss, knowing that if they don’t like the deal he offers than they can move to a different company.

    What kept workweeks long in the 19th century was the same thing that pushed farmers to employ their children: productivity was low, and people had to work 70-80 hours if they wanted to produce enough to keep food on the table. This was not the fault of exploitative employers, unless parents count as exploitative. It was the fault of an underdeveloped economy.”

  5. This “blog” that does marketing and advertising, hence the click bait title? It’s a list of current things our govt provides with our tax dollars. And uses the present to say “socialism is already here.” Look at true socialists countries. Look at countries where the average person pays 30-40% in taxes. Look at their healthcare system. Look at how efficiently they use those taxes. Look at Venezuela, Cuba. Have you ever lived in a country with these high taxes? (I have) And people think the world’s strongest economy with 300+m people, the US, can switch over and be compared to a country like Sweden so easily?

    It ends with the line/justification “The reason we have government is because government can do what people cannot do for themselves individually, to improve our quality of life and assure our safety.”. Wow. So the US people who make up CEOs, inventors, moms and educators, the current capitalistic society are all week and need to rely upon men in Washington to do something “we cannot do for ourselves”? Dang. That’s insulting. And laughable.

    How much money does the US government, politicians sitting in suits behind desks waste every year?

    This “blog” is saying men in suits can better run a functioning non-profit soup kitchen and homeless shelter than what many charities and churches currently do – for free or as tax deductions? Or that the govt can better run health care? Look at the Obama care website, people’s premiums and how “better run” that was….

    I’m sorry but this “current bullet point blog” used as justification for true socialism is the weakest argument I’ve ever seen. Zero facts and no merit.

  6. Then you feel that Republican Socialism is good for America? That the tax burden is on the backs of the middle class and those dollars are redistributed upward to the wealthy. Do you really think that CEO’s are 940% more productive today than they were in the seventies? Do you really think the wage gap is caused by their being more productive than the workforce?

    The fossil fuel industry gets a million dollars a minute in subsides from your tax dollars. Don’t you just love Republican Socialism?

    Oh, and yes, I know exactly the definition of “socialism.” I’m an educator. You don’t know the difference between connotation and denotation and have no grasp on nuance. The term Democratic Socialism creates cognitive dissonance in you.

    Look it up. That’s the difference between progressives and conservatives. Progressives can live with cognitive dissonance. It causes conservatives to make up crap.

    • This article was written by someone who is either (a) painfully ignorant to the results of these progra.s she hails as “successes” or (b) incredibly determined to mislead her gullible followers.

      Let’s look at just a couple of the outcomes of her socialist “successes:”

      * Social Security and Medicare have a combined $50 TRILLION in present value unfunded future liabilities. That’s more than twice the amount of the national debt we hear so much about.

      * Those federally-backed student loans she credits to socialism — gee, what have those gotten us? A bunch of angsty and entitled millenials who now want even more socialism to bail them out of the trouble socialism has gotten them into.

      And btw, the GI Bill isnt socialism. It’s an employer-sponsored benefit, earned by those who benefit from it, the same as any other employer-sponsored benefit program.

      Seriously, this article is a bad joke.

      • Your total misunderstanding of the social security system would make us all laugh if it wasn’t so repetitive of the POTUS stupid propaganda
        Life goes on and I hope you get your facts straight

    • Socialism is when the State controls industry. Fascism is when industry controls the State. More accurately referred to as corporatism.

      When you understand the Citizens United decision, it’s clear we are Corporatists.

      I’m unsure why anyone would want to continue this way.

    • Exactly. “Socialism” is a vague and sloppy term that’s been used to cover damn-near *any* group effort: anything from labor unions to farmers’ granges, volunteer fire-departments to federal health regulations, municipal water-systems to govt.-owned-and-managed whole economies. We really need more specific terms. What we do know is that the more a government gets involved in “managing” anything, the more that activity costs and the less efficient it becomes.

      • Lesli Fish, do you mean like the CDC, FDA, and EPA, all of which are to protect the public from bad food, bad drugs, bad air and bad water? How much is health and life for you and your loved worth?

        • The CDC who said don’t close teh borders for Ebola, that’s not how you deal with a pandemic, and has now turned 360 degrees to blame the current administration of blowing it by not closing the borders? The FDA that won’t accept known trials in other 1st world countries as basis for US trials? The EPA that sent a mine slag river tumbling down the one of the larger interstate waterways poisoning 1000s of acres of shore? Those folks protecting us? Not saying they’re useless, but absolutely poorly run.

      • NO, you’re wrong. The government runs Medicare and it runs more efficiently and cost effectively than almost any private entity. Do the research.

      • Strange. It is real easy for me to get me post in here. Go figure.

        You don’t mention what it is that you disagree with. I would be interested to know what your definition of Socialism is.

        Thanks.

        • Not really the point and it doesn’t matter what my definition is. I’m just a bit tired of people posting what they feel are “facts” from disreputable sources.

          Random websites are not real sources. I’m an academic, so this is extremely important. You could use Gallup, or perhaps Brittanica. Hell, even Miriam Webster or any university publication.

          • How about Necromancy? It was valid for awhile.

            An academic who does not incorporate the internet is really not much of an Academic, more of a Luddite.

            It still comes across, as a variation on a theme of “don’t confuse me with the facts.”

          • That’s a stupid statement. Of course I use the internet (and each example I cited are internet sites). But, as I seem to have to explain to students (and obviously you, too) Wikipedia is not a reputable source. And neither is the original link you provided.

      • The author of this blog is an obvious ignoramus, socialism is government healthcare, confiscation of firearms, speech control with criminal penalties, mandatory work assignments, concentration camps, racial profiling, nepotism, political profiling, government control of the media, elections with 99.99% winners, tax code used to control opposition (true obama did this ), government ownership and control of the economy for the benefit of the party elite, compulsory military service, and that just the beginning. Anne Landman should stop diarrhea of keyboard and read a little.

        • Oooh, looks like someone learned their mantra recitation lol; good boy, did the oligarchs and right-wingers give you a participation star? Lol

        • Lol what the hell are you smoking? Half the stuff you named has nothing to do with socialism. There may have been socialist countries which also experienced some of these negative things (for reasons not related to socialism) but please don’t get that confused with the actual definition of the economic system that is socialism.

  7. Well, I guess the U.S.S.R gets the last laugh. I wonder if they knew they were screwing with the minds of countless Boomers when they put the word Socialist in their name.

    • You must be a millennial. The “fear” of “socialism” is a heck of a lot more than the fact the word was in the name of a government that murdered millions of innocent people. Read the history.

      • Which history? Whose book?
        Interesting how the scarecrow are always so prompt to cite the failures of socialist experiments, are so glib about spouting the victims and dead caused by those upheavals, yet remain shamefully quiet about corporate socialism, oligarchy disguised as capitalism, and the millions also murdered by right-wing regimes…
        Then, if you’re going to tackle a history major on this subject, perhaps you too should expand your readings to include studies of Those totalitarian regimes…

  8. Good point! (So much confusion/back-turning/differing about socialism that it is really challenging to have a conversation about it nowadays….not to mention it has dramatically negative connotations for those who do not fully understand it.)

    • The phrase private business could never do what government does is the biggest lie a socialist could ever believe. Just because it takes workers to administer government programs does not mean it is socialism. The amount of workers necessary to administer the amount of programs a socialist wants would require a huge tax base. Is that what you really want? 50% of your salary going to a government that typically runs very inefficiently.

      • Jeff, it takes a federal government facilitate massive projects, especially ones that cross state lines like interstate highways, rural electrification, etc.

        • Correct but it doesn’t take a federal government to provide money for college, healthcare, which all socialists like to call free. What part of “someone is paying for it do you not understand?”

      • What a joke! Are you satisfied with how privatization has unfolded so far?

        Climate Change, Nuclear War , literal lowering of life expectancy, decreased National Security, obscene wealth gap, massive debt, prison and surveillance state.

        Obviously, something is failing spectacularly. There is nothing that is not on the table to get put of this enduring mess.

        • I’m confused. Are you saying privatization of federal functions caused all those problems you list? If so, would share how that works?

      • Jeff, I can think of a lot of things that are technically possible. Of course, whatever you want to call it, there are few obstacles to full privatization right now. I mean, why not, Free Market, Law of Supply and demand and all that sort of stuff.

        It ain’t gonna happen. It ain’;t happening right now. Pretty theory, but it adds nothing substantial to the conversation to talk about hypotheticals. I know people who are literally hungry and homeless right now.

        Low paying, dead end jobs, with massive debt. I choose to believe that you are not of thinking about this, in what appears to be a thoughtless post.

  9. Those things aren’t socialism. The military is not a socialist program. It is people working and doing jobs and they get paid for it. GI Bill is a benefit of it. The Labor movement is not socialism, it is getting government support for fair labor. Roads are not socialism, we pay taxes at the gas pumps. Social security is not socialism, it is from money taken from our checks specifically for that purpose. Medicare is also taken from our checks, which shouldn’t be done. But much of this came from a safety net from the great depression. Socialism is about the benefiting of the individual from the government that they didn’t work for such as free phones or free college or health care. The problem with government based health care is that it is too big and too inefficient, no one is held accountable.

    • Matt, I will agree with you that the military isn’t socialism. But Medicare and social security most definitely are. The way socialism works is through taxation. The monies are then redistributed to help the many. And yes the GI bill is a benefit but it is still free education paid for by the taxpayers so it is socialism as well.

      • Except, a significant portion of taxes pays for the military. We can’t afford to pay our military any other way, unless it becomes a corporation. Thus it is socialism.

      • The GI Bill is NOT “free college” – it is, if fact, a benefit provided by an employer as part of the employment compensation package; it is EARNED by completing the terms of the contract. It the same thing as Corporation X offering to reimburse employees for college tuition and books once the employee has been with the company for 4 years or more. The fact that the employer in question operates entirely on tax dollars is irrelevant to the conversation in this context.

        • Interesting take. I kinda like it. So, the military isn’t a higher calling. It’s a flat economic exchange…. more like being and armed real estate agent.

      • Not true Thomas. Not everyone gets social security and medicare. You have to earn points to do so. The funding comes from payroll deductions.

    • You say those things aren’t socialism because taxes pay for them. Where do you think those taxes come from? Where do you think the money for programs in democratic socialist companies comes from?

    • Oy, vey, Matt Sullivan. Your thinking is exactly like the guy in cartoon! We pay taxes at the gas pumps for roads. Yes. But listen to yourself. WE PAY TAXES to facilitate the creation and maintenance of the roads. Know what that is? Socialistic. People in the military get paid, absolutely. Where does the money for their salaries come from? That’s right. Taxes. Who pays those taxes? All of us. If we all pay for it and it’s for the benefit of all of us, it’s socialistic. Medicare is taken out of everyone’s paycheck as a tax. Who benefits from Medicare? All of us, eventually. That’s socialistic.

    • So if the private market is so efficient why is it that our private health care system costs us about 19% of GDP while health care in countries that have single payer systems come in at around 12% of GDP. The defenders of our current healthcare mess somehow think that the massive profits made by insurance companies and big pharma are benefits. Yay ! Billions for billionaire taken right out of your insurance premium. Very efficient indeed. Exactly what we have in this country – socialism for the rich.

    • No, socialism is when workers own the means of production. In other words, we the people being part owners in the companies we work for and benefitting as much from our jobs as CEOs. If the state owns the means of production, and we are the state (govt of, by, and for the people), we own it all equally and benefit from it all equally. The problem lies in the people who lead. They end up screwing everyone, no matter what type of system you live under.

  10. I am Canadian and can say from my experience that those in need do get attention right away. If it’s not urgent, you may need to wait for a procedure. Those who come to the USA don’t mind paying the cost to get medical treatment quicker. Many of your citizens cannot afford their medication or to get care they need. You shouldn’t have to worry about losing your home or savings if you become ill.
    We don’t have that added stress.
    Our medical system is not perfect and there is always room for improvement. My family has had very good experiences with our Canadian healthcare. There are some people who abuse the system and use the emergency dept. for ailments that should be seen by their doctor or a walk-in clinic. They can have a long wait because the more serious cases will always take precedence.

    • Hi Sharon, our system already forces long waits to get needed surgery. I had an appointment with a spine specialist in August of 2015 who recommended surgery, and then I had to wait until Dec. 3 to get the surgery I needed.

  11. Wonder why there are so many people living in tents, cars, cardboard boxes? Taxes and rents tripled. 30 million people from 120 different countries come here illegally and have 60 million anchor babies. Build more schools, parks, subdivisions. Hire more police and teachers. Build more hospitals. Tax and spend, the game never ends. 23 trillion national Debt.

    • Yep – deep in debt. And almost all of it went to our endless love for the military. Making warmongers rich. Our most important national interest

  12. Saying Law Enforcement, the FBI and CIA are socialist is like saying the KKK is a social justice movement. It’s horrifically ignorant and you’re literally associating victims with their murderers. Please stay out of politics until you’ve spent more time learning about it.

    • Please explain how they aren’t? Are they not services provided for the public good and paid for entirely by taxes? Just because services like these may be viewed as essential, it doesn’t take away from the fact that they are fundamentally socialist programs.

      • Government programs in of themselves are not socialist. Public services to all is not socialism. The government is a corporation that steals our money to provide services that are needed within it’s jurisdiction. Socialism is giving to those that are not needed.

        • Matt take an economics course. Government programs are by definition socialist. Just because they are not welfare does not make them any less socialist.

      • I would consider myself liberal, both fiscally and socially. I think the key to educating Americans, in addition to what you have done above, is to remind people of three things:
        1. That we still live in a modified capitalist market, that won’t change.
        2. Socialist programs work on the premise of the common good and are spread the risk and cost, of healthcare, for example, across the entire population not just the sick or elderly.
        3. That Democratic socialism is not the same as Communism, which almost always is dictatorial even fascist, and concentrated wealth and the government into a ruling class and removes all competition and profit incentive.

    • Yelp, see you don’t get it..no use trying to convince a fool he is a foolish because a fool is too foolish to figure it out. Social programs are socialism because it is paid for with our taxes, I think you at confusing that with communism but only fools can’t tell the diff not can it be explained to them.

      • Benny and David you’re both wrong.

        The FBI and the CIA are not socialism, because they don’t produce any products. If they did she the government owned and ran then that would be socialism.

        It’s also not communism because the little don’t own the FBI and CIA, the government runs it.

        And it isn’t capitalism because obviously it isn’t privately owned or designed to profit.

  13. Sad part is the government does a very poor job at running anything other than the military. States and their residents are in a much better position to decide all of the items listed. Probably save a few dollars too.

    It is amazing how easily the Government has taken away your liberties and freedoms, by promising to do things for you, that you can do yourself.

    • You are ignoring the fact that not all states have a large enough population to fund any of these things. That is why were are the “United States”. We all put in to help each other. Can you imagine the Interstate Highways if each state had to fund their own? A state like Wyoming would have all dirt roads eventually. Big state, long highways, not a lot of people.

      • Wyoming is a poor option for you to use as an example. They have no state income tax. Could very easily support road construction simply by implementing one. Also, many roads are in county and city, not supported by federal government. And, unlike many drivers, Wyomingites know how to drive on dirt roads and it doesn’t bother them.

        • It’s actually the PERFECT example, because Wyoming has no state income tax in order to draw residents… they get a huge portion of their funding from blue states. You know, from the UNITED States.

          • Wyoming gets money from energy, and like TN and FL, which also have no state income tax, it gets money from sales and tourist taxes.

    • Scott Mayberry: if you think you can provide your own police and fire protection, libraries, defense, road construction and maintenance as well as healthcare and others then you are not only sorely mistaken but actually a little off the deep end.

    • Our local government does a great job of garbage collection, police protection, fire protection, street maintenance and running the court system. And I’m really grateful for CDOT’s snowplows cleaning snow off I-70 in snowstorms. I’m grateful government is assuring that the water coming out of my tap is safe to drink. Having lived with a septic system for decades, I’m grateful for the sewer system. I’m grateful government enforces laws that make restaurants wash their plates and utensils thoroughly so I don’t get sick from previous customers who’ve used them.

      Give government credit for making your life better. It helps keep us safe and free. It’s not “taking away your freedoms.”

  14. “Compassionate Capitalism”. I prefer using the term Compassionate Capitalism for the term Democratic Socialism because I find there is less negative reaction and more willingness to be open to having a healthy conversation and dialogue which results in better understanding.

    • Good point! (So much confusion/back-turning/differing about socialism that it is really challenging to have a conversation about it nowadays….not to mention it has dramatically negative connotations for those who do not fully understand it.)

    • Excellent point! The fact the Bernie uses the term in any form to describe himself could cost him dearly. Too many people will not take the time to fully understand, instead latching on to a sound bite or label the his opponents will surely repeat again and again. We are already seeing it, with SO many people in this country lacking in basic intelligence and common sense. Most of these people are Trump supporters.

  15. What our government-backed program are is “democratic socialism) a la FDR (a POTUS so popular with the people that they had to pass a law restricting reelections to ONE), not “pure socialism.” I wish you had specified that. We need to make it clear that Bernie Sanders “democratic socialism” isn’t pure socialism where the gov’t controls the means of production. MOST advanced nations are social democracies.

    • What our government-backed programs are is “democratic socialism” a la FDR (a POTUS so popular with the people that they had to pass a law restricting reelections to ONE), not “pure socialism.” I wish you had specified that. We need to make it clear that Bernie Sanders “democratic socialism” isn’t pure socialism where the gov’t controls the means of production. MOST advanced nations are social democracies.

    • Kris, the problem with right wing Americans is that they think all forms of socialism refer only to the form adopted by Communism. They can’t differentiate between them

    • In the cases noted above, the government does own the means of production. They (meaning we) own police and fire, beaches and parks, social security and Medicare, etc.

  16. The Post Office is NOT a socialist program. It is an independent agency that is completely self-funded and run by the Postmaster General – period! The post office makes a profit Every Year. The only reason they run a deficit is that congress insisted that they fund post employees medical benefits for the next 75 years – for postal employees that are not even born yet. This is a fact , investigate for yourself . It costs them an additional 5 billion a year. It’s well documented, you find it too difficult to research, you’re uninformed. NONE of our tax dollars go to pay for the Post Office. Never has, never will.

    • Catherine Cyko. Actually, that’s only half true. Historically, the USPS has, in fact, received major annual subsidies from the U.S. government (i.e., taxpayer money). That was phased out some 30 years ago. But, the USPS is granted an exclusive monopoly for its door-to-door mail services, which makes it a hybrid. Without that monopoly, it would like not survive in a “free capitalist” environment. But, then again, there would much greatly limited postal services to rural and other hard to reach areas of the U.S., as well as a differential of services.

  17. I hate to tell you all, but the happiest people in the world live in “socialist” countries. Finland, Canada, Netherlands, the list goes on and on.

    • That’s funny why are people I know personally coming here from Canada for their medical care if their socialist care is so good. They tell me it’s horrible and come to the US for all their medical

      • No, Connie, it’s not horrible. These people simply want to skip the line. In Canada, if you can function with an injured knee, you are not priority. If you can’t walk and do your job, you get priority. We base care on need and some selfish people will go south to skip that line. They’re impatient and likely rich.

        The bigger question you should be asking is why they can so easily get care in the US while Americans go bankrupt by the hundreds every day due to healthcare cost….and die because they can’t afford care.

        Oh, and don’t forget the busloads of seniors who take day tours to Montreal or Vancouver to get their Rx filled at Canadian prices because they can’t afford them in the US.

      • BS. I am a Canadian. Never have had a problem getting immediate medical care. Nobody goes bankrupt here because of medical bills. Knee replacement = $0
        Lung clots and heart attack = $0. Personal experience. The only thing that would cause a revolution in Canada is politicians trying to destroy our universal health care system. Americans are idiots for not having universal health care.

        • You cannot compare Canada with the US. Your total population is around 37,000,000. The US population is around 370,000,000. The state of California has 39,000,000. They can’t even solve their homeless problems. I can’t imagine health care being administered by a bunch of bureaucrats. I can’t think of one government program that runs efficiently and actually works.

          • Holy cow, another talking point from the right…Fox News maybe?

            Anyways, 30 countries, collectively, have more people than we. They all have a universal health care program.

            Numbers have NOTHING to do with it. What is missing is the WILL of the people. MOST of America WANTS universal health care (over 70%). So what’s the problem?
            The 1% who own and run the FOR PROFIT health care corporations and the politicians who get “donations” from them to stay in office and write and pass helpful private health care laws and legislation!!!

            Yale just put out an extensive study on cost of health care and what universal health care would cost. Look into it. Learn. Please.

            Here….. I’ll help you with a source: https://www.democracynow.org/2020/2/19/lancet_report_medicare_for_all

      • I am Canadian and can say from my experience that those in need do get attention right away. If it’s not urgent, you may need to wait for a procedure. Those who come to the USA don’t mind paying the cost to get medical treatment quicker.
        Our medical system is not perfect and there is always room for improvement. My family has had very good experiences with our Canadian healthcare. There are some people who abuse the system and use the emergency dept. for ailments that should be seen by their doctor or a walk-in clinic. They can have a long wait because the more serious cases will always take precedence.

    • Pat, Finland and Netherlands have been in financial collapse. What’s happy about that? Canada is not socialist. And, you are free to move to any of those countries.

  18. The author is conflating public goods spending typical of government with socialism, which is defined as government owning the means of production and distribution.

    Characterizing all functions of government as socialism is a not-so-clever way of avoiding defending the indefensible: what socialism actually is and its record of failure throughout history and around the world.

    • So, for 40 years, Republicans call every government program that helps the people “Socialism”, and now we have a candidate that embraces spending tax money on the people instead of putting it all into the pockets of billionaires, and now the definition changes so you can scare people more. It’s one word and it can mean many things. Listen to what’s being proposed.

      • No one has suggested taking over the means of production! That’s just a strawman created by right wingers and corporate media!

        • Exactly, but that’s what socialism is. Government ownership and control of the means of production.

          Socialism is not the mere existence of social programs.

          • You are conflating socialism and communism by using Marxian language. Harry Truman was the avowed socialist who started the Cold War. The Labour Party (UK) was founded by anti-communist socialists. Yes, the postal service is a prime example of a socialist program, identified as such by classical socialists and opposed by modern market fundamentalists who are fine with the notion corporate monopolies in the parcel services industry.

            Privatization is the opposite of socialism.

      • Exactly.
        The word “socialism” has been misused for so long and now means so many different things that I don’t think any two people are referring to the same thing when they say it. I no longer think it means anything whatsoever in America except a buzz word to make people outraged.
        The American military, for example (upper right) almost explicitly follows fascist principles (or more exactly the other way around: fascism was crafted to put military principles into civilian society).
        I am on a one-person crusade to eliminate the use of the word “socialism” in American political discourse; it confuses the conversation and means nobody understands what anybody is talking about.

      • Republicans aren’t wanting take your money from you to give to illegal immigrants and support them while they do nothing to earn citizenship. SSI checks, healthcare, food stamps, subsidized housing, free college. FREE, FREE, FREE. Not protecting our borders, tear down our military or police. Giving theirselves raises they don’t deserve, etc. There is a big difference don’t fall for their BS OR BERNIE SANDERS WHO IS CONTROLLED BY AOC OUR ENEMY.

        • You’re absolutely correct. Republicans are not taking our tax dollars to help the poor, the ill or the oppressed in our society;
          Republicans are taking our tax dollars to pad the wealth of the already wealthy.

          Republicans don’t help those seeking asylum here. Republicans rip their children from their arms and lock them all in cages without even the basic necessities for hygiene.

          The list goes on and on and on. It is a long and ugly list that will go down inn history as a truly shameful period for our country.

          I can’t imagine that COMPASSIONATE Conservatism could ever be worse than what we have right now.

      • So. The small amount of “help” I’ve personally received from the Trump administration is miniscule to none. Perhaps if I had a fat IRA savings account I may have seen “some” increase, but I wouldn’t know. I work my ass off and still struggle to pay for life’s necessities. Saving money is pretty much impossible, unless you don’t buy groceries that week, or maybe your lucky enough to not get sick.

        I DO know the increased national debt spending benefited large corporations immensely, much more so than we as individuals. Many corporations used those big fat tax breaks given to them to buy back their own public stock. Many pay less than 2% tax rates, some none, like the NRA for instance. That’s some disparaging and unfair business in my world.

        • please stop the trolling….we who KNOW the truth and see with our own eyes the REAL socialism going on with the rich and wealthy with their cronies in Congress and the WH!!!

          you work for Fox (?) because what you share is about the low level of integrity and truth it has in it…..

    • Brett, you are neglecting to mention all of the successful countries which practice socialism by pointing out all of the less successful ones. I had a conversation the other day with a woman from Israel. She said, “you people are crazy. All I have to do is present my medical insurance card when I am home (Israel) and I’ve never had to pay a single Co-pay or deductible…ever. sure, we pay a little more in taxes but it becomes like the voluntary benefits that you take advantage of here in The U.S. You don’t even notice that is is gone from your paycheck.” Difference is we opt for voluntary benefits here in The U.S. (like Aflac) because the healthcare that we have to pay for anyway through payroll deductions (or privately) is simply inadequate and getting worse. The only way to contain the cost is to opt for a sky high deductible and who wants that? So, Israel, Japan, France, Germany, Spain, England, all of the Scandanavian countries, Canada, and more all have universal healthcare, government run and tax payer funded. But I never hear people mention Israel and Canada in the same sentence when they present the “failed socialist state” argument. As a nation we are suffering the social hangover of having lived through the cold war, a time when the word socialism was associated with The USSR, our enemy then and now, The USSR actually being a confederation of communist dictatorships living under forced subjugation by Russia, not at all equitable with European socialism as we know it today. But Joe McCarthy, Richard Nixon and Roy Cohen’s legacy lives on. Oh, and by the way, Trump’s tariffs caused a major shortfall in our our ability to export soy beans and wheat and then he opted to “fix it” by subsidising the farmers who were hurting. Who will end up paying for that subsidy if not the American tax payer? socialism?

      • Israel is not a good example because they are given almost $4 billion dollars a year from the US taxpayers. That money would fund a lot for us here.

    • Yes, to be more accurate the author should have used the term “democratic socialism” instead of “socialism” but I think we all get her point. Social programs funded by taxes have gone pretty well for us. As a nation they’re something we can be proud of.

    • Where did this come from? “socialism, which is defined as government owning the means of production and distribution”
      This is not the definition of socialism as practiced in modern social countries.
      The Ideal is:
      “In the first half of the 19th century, early socialist thinkers like Henri de Saint-Simon, Robert Owen and Charles Fourier presented their own models for reorganizing society along the lines of cooperation and community, rather than the competition inherent in capitalism”
      Socialists believe that the bounty of the earth belongs to all it’s inhabitants. not just the greedy ones. Socialism is like there is an Apple tree and when the apples fall everybody gets an equal share. In Capitalism someone gets a stick and knocks the apples of early and says these are my apples. No they are not!

  19. Socialism has nothing to do with freedom and democracy or a lack of it and everything to do with building a caring society that seeks to raise everyone and give everyone the opportunity to work and succeed in that society. Socialism is not scary, it’s not Communism and it’s not dictatorship, whatever the wack-jobs like Jake Johnson, Chris Matthews of MSNBC or Sanders’ latest red-baiting attacker, Joe Biden, may say.Socialism’s premise is that government and society at large have a responsibility for the welfare of a country’s most vulnerable, and that the aggregation of vast wealth and the existence of grinding poverty are antithetical to a good society.

    • Very well said. Compassion is our nature, too bad so many see that that salvation is something we do, not something limited to meeting some materialized gaseous cerebrate after death.

    • Here is the thing though, Historically speaking (and all we truly have to go on is historical context) every government that has ever touted itself as Socialist anything has, once it has established a power base, eventually became authoritarian in the extreme, and ultimately caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of its citizens either through outright murder, or through gross mismanagement (usually a combination of both), and then forced citizens to accept substandard living conditions, or try to escape the poverty and hardship imposed upon them by the very government that was supposed to care for them, protect them, and see to their needs. Democratic Socialists don’t appear to have any intrinsic differences to set them apart from traditional socialists, so there is no reason to believe that “this time” there will be a different end result. To label a movement as Hyphenated-Socialism is laying out a whole trainload of baggage. Be aware, really aware, of what it is you are advocating (from the perspective of History) with the words you choose to use. Trying to tweak the definition into something kinder and gentler (as the Democratic Socialist movement seems to be trying to do) will not work on a thinking populace that has access to the historic record.

      • The initial tax starts with the Catholic Church collection plate.
        10% tithe? For what? The priests don’t use condoms on the young boys, so take that out of any overhead calculation. The Vatican sure knows how’s to screw it all up. Thanks Jesus

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