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It's Not Socialism; It's What the People Want


#1

It's Not Socialism; It's What the People Want

Jim Hightower

"Socialism," snarled Donald Trump at a recent pep rally of far-right Republicans. And the obedient crowd of faithful Trumpistas snarled back in unison: "So-shull-izz-ummm!"


#2

Perfect headline, good medicine for the masses, let’s push for it.

By the way, when a Trump crowd is that obedient, they are a physical danger, protect yourselves.


#3

We already know where the Democratic Party leadership stands. They’re prepared to surrender to Trump, if the alternative is “socialism” (i.e., New Deal liberalism):

‘“Trump is going to devour every one of these [Democratic] candidates if they can’t say they support capitalism … Yes, capitalism has to be reformed from time to time to work for all Americans. But, my God, if you’re afraid to say you are a capitalist in America, I’m just gonna tell you, people on the left Tweeting today may not like it, but let me let you in on a little secret, that is a crisis for your party. You’re gonna lose in 2020. I mean just pull up the stakes on the tent and pack her up. The party’s over.”’:

Good to know where folks stand. The funny thing is, the Republican Party was quite obviously ‘in crisis’ in 2016, and they still won every branch of government. Which goes to show once again that some Dems would rather lose to the Right than give an inch of ground to left populism.

https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/03/13/please-step-away-from-the-socialism-the-red-scare-dems-at-msnbc/


#4

If dems can’t speak truth to power then they are bullshitters too. And if the majority of Americans don’t understand that capitalism at least needs a make-over, they are delusional.
I know politics isn’t a game played by fair rules, but I for one want to vote for a straight shooter, or not at all. I’m getting too old to play games anymore.


#5

It wasn’t too long ago that Tucker Carlson had a public hissy fit when a guest observed, honestly and accurately, that he was a “millionaire working for billionaires,” and that that fact might have a bearing on his reportage. Carlson was reduced to a sputtering, name-calling wreck.

We should keep hammering that point home: that the political spectrum isn’t from left to right, but from top to bottom; and that NOBODY in corporate media is allowed to tell the bottom’s story truthfully.


#6

Capitalism needs dismantling.

If you would look to articles there a lot of talk about “breaking up the big Corporations” be it in the tech industry or banking. The way the system is structured this can not happen. Capitalism has at its heart this notion that “The private individual in controls the means of production”. This is accomplished via a system that allows pools of Capital to collect in the hands of some small few called “The Investor Class”. Under what we are told is “The best economic system ever developed” these Capitalists invest these pools of Capital into firms or entities that then make things and employ people and those same Capitalists are motivated into doing so in order to garner even more Capital.

Here is the problem. Even as Capital pools in the hands of an ever smaller group (see Monopoly the game) , the costs to build those mines or factories or other products escalate ever upwards. The time one could dip a pan into a river and come up with gold or sink a pipe into th Earth and strike oil are long gone.
In order to build a plant to get at that oil in the Tar sands , just as example YEARS must be spent and many billions invested in order to erect this infrastructure , all of this sopping up that Capital for very many years before production can even start.

This means that only the very largest private firms have the Capital to launch these projects which of course means smaller players are out of the picture. Banks here in Canada, even as the big 5 dominate continously call for further mergers to be allowed. They claim they need to get BIGGER in order to remain competitive because only the very largest of banks have the Capital required to lend to the Corporations that are behind those huge infrastructure projects and by the same token only the very largest of those frims will be able to have enough collateral to be able to obtain those loans.

In turn , as these pools of Capital get concentrated in ever larger Corporations these entities gain ever more Political power holding Governments and entire Countries hostage with the threat of job loss or demands that these Governments pass “free trade” deals or even remove Governments of other Countries that are not welcoming of their presence.

The people want Socialism because in spite of what they are told they feel there something very wrong with the current system. Concentrating all of the wealth into the hands of the few , giving those same all of the Political power and structuring an economic system that demands constant growth and consumption is un-democratic and destructive. The Investor class will not “invest” those dollars unless they can get MORE and more for them means less for everyone else.


#7

Hey?
Isn’t Trump’s wall a form of socialism?
Maybe someone should tell him.


#8

As usual, good points from a dedicated populist. But dammit Jim, don’t forget about that other cog in the fascist wheel - pulling back on empire!


#9

Democratic Capitalism…
To me capitalism is a game and all games need rules. We had a modicum of rules taken years to formulate but those rules have been shredded since the end of WW2 beginning with Taft -Hartley…
Not to take much away from the writer but Mussolini was a socialist primarily and then after WW1 he slipped into the abyss into Fascism. Hitler adored Mussolini; he envied him for how much he got away with in Italy and Hitler had to “fight” so hard to become “supreme ruler”.


#10

Let’s not overlook legislation proposed by Rep. Ro Khanna and Sen. Sherrod Brown to greatly increase and extend the Earned Income Tax Credit to benefit millions of Americans.


#11

OK under what system is the fire department or the police departments? SOCIALISM!. These are just two of many programs in America that are socialist. We already live in a socialist kind of world. Now we must make it stronger for all the people. We must eliminate corporate socialism (Wal-Mart, chevron, amazon, goggle, Microsoft ). These are just a few of the privet companies that get well-fare. So, if we work on getting rid of companies like the above. It only make sense that there will be money for programs that (WE THE PEOPLE) really need in this nation. Bring back the corporate death penalty!. If you don’t know of the CDP…thom hartmann explains in fine detail. Please go watch his podcast.


#12

The Masters are frightened:


#13

Especially as Ro Khanna just gave Senator Bernie Sanders his first major endorsement for president in 2020 (or at the least, the first major endorsement that doesn’t come from Senator Sanders home state)!


#14

At its essence, “socialism” simply means: “for, and by, the People,” it is generally only a problem when corruption removes this focus of being for, and by, all of the people. You don’t have to be capitalist, or socialist, to be against corruption and for public policy that protects, secures and promotes the Rights and Opportunities of all people.


#15

Capitalism keeps it’s popularity among those that cherish personal and corporate prosperity. Democratic socialism promotes community prosperity.


#16

Why can’t they just say, “I will support what the democratic public supports, not a coercive autocracy.”


#17

The very wealthy look down upon public schools, fire and police- unless there is an attack on their property.


#18

I say it IS socialism, to anyone who is not a rigid old-line socialist who insists that socialism means worker ownership of the means of production and nothing else–and I’m for it. The economics of The Former Soviet Union was not socialism but state capitalism for the benefit of its cronies.


#19

Adam Smith, the “Father of Capitalism,” warned against “Cartels” of rich investors who claim to be “owners” of businesses, i.e., corporations. Smith advocated an economy that “lifts ALL boats in a rising tide.” That would mean workers would rise also, and indeed, if TIME=$, then workers are major investors! That’s exactly what happens in Worker Co-ops, in which workers are shareholders! This is the model of a “Free Enterprise” economy that is a democracy of worker-owners in the private economy to match a democratic government! Lets make the tide rise! (See economist Richard Wolff.)


#20

I was unable to find anything resembling those precise phrases in a text search on econlib.org, but like all writers on political economy prior to the middle of the 20th century Smith did indeed rail against the evils of monopoly, including the “cartels” of tradesmen that we now call “labor unions”! He seems not to have had any inkling of where the Industrial Revolution was headed in 1776, the year his Inquiry was published. But then that was the same year in which James Watt’s first commercial steam engine went into service, initiating the Age of (coal-fired) Steam!