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    Default Socialism in America

    Ideas and Movements, 1850-Present

    Roots of socialism in America
    The roots of socialism in America can be traced to the arrival of German immigrants in the 1850s when Marxian socialist unions began, such as the National Typographic Union in 1852, United Hatters of 1856, and Iron Moulders' Union of North America in 1859. Theodore H. White, author of Fire in the Ashes: Europe in Mid-Century (1953) wrote, "Socialism is the belief and the hope that by proper use of government power, men can be rescued from their helplessness in the wild cycling cruelty of depression and boom."

    Progress of socialism
    The Socialist Party in America was born and grew dramatically between 1900 and 1912. Under the charismatic leadership of Eugene V. Debs in 1912, 160 councilmen, 145 aldermen, one congressman, and 56 mayors, including Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Berkeley, California, and Schenectady, New York, were elected as Socialists. At the time, Socialists published 300 newspapers, including the Appeal of Reason, which was a Kansas-based publication with 700,000 subscribers. Membership in the Socialist Party totaled 125,000.



    Debs converted to socialism while serving jail time for his part in the Pullman Strike in 1897, and began to edit the Appeal to Reason publication. From 1900 to 1920, he ran for president on the Socialist ticket while increasing membership to the Socialist Party tenfold. Although Debs insisted he was a Marxist, he spoke more about poverty and injustice than typical socialist concerns about the class struggle and the dictatorship of the proletariat (Marx).

    In 1912, Debs received 900,000 votes, which was six percent of the presidential votes cast that year, principally for his stand against America's involvement in World War I. Debs appealed to blue collar workers hungry for improved working conditions and higher wages, but also such intellectuals as authors Jack London and Upton Sinclair.

    Prominently with President Theodore Roosevelt and through the 20th century's first years, the Progressive Movement came into view with its belief in “the perfectability of man, and in an open society where mankind was neither chained to the past nor condemned to a deterministic future; one which people were capable of changing their condition for better or worse.”

    The Socialist Party was included within the Progressive Movement. The party dealt with American problems in an American manner. Unlike the Communist Party, the Socialist Party at that time felt no obligation to adhere to an international party line. For example, socialists and other progressives campaigned at the local level for municipal ownership of waterworks, gas and electric plants, and made good progress in such endeavors. In 1911, there were 18 Socialist candidates for mayor, and they nearly won the Cleveland, Ohio, and Los Angeles, California, mayoral races.

    In 1905, Upton Sinclair founded the Intercollegiate Socialist Society, which soon had chapters in the leading universities. Lively young men and women discussed the “New Gospel according to St. Marx.” Universities were considered to be favorable ground for progressive thought.

    Following the election of 1912, Socialist Party membership began to decline as some members cast their vote for Woodrow Wilson. Others were expelled, such as the Industrial Workers of the World, of which Debs and labor organizer "Mother" Mary Harris Jones had once been members. The IWW had been organized in 1905, grew into a radical, direct-action wing of American socialism by 1910, and had up to 100,000 workers by 1915.

    By 1917, Socialist Party membership had slipped to 80,000. Nevertheless, by 1920 Debs managed to garner 919,800 votes for his presidential candidacy, the most a socialist has ever received in America, albeit making up only 3.4 percent of the popular vote. Those votes were representive of Americans' disillusionment with World War I, and of Debs himself, who spoke passionately against the country's involvement in that war.

    The Espionage Act of 1917 was crafted to jail “anyone who interferred with the draft or encouraged disloyalty [to America]” and provided for jail sentences of 10 to 20 years. The Sedition Act of 1918 extended further penalties to those found obstructing the sale of U.S. war bonds, discouraging recruitment, uttering “disloyal or abusive language” about the government, the Constitution, the American flag, or even the U.S. military uniform. Under those acts, the government arrested more than 1,500 people, including Eugene Debs.

    The Socialist Party's strength was further sapped by 1920, because of government suppression and public disapproval during World War I. Such anti-socialist hysteria as the Red Scare, and internal factionalism aggravated by the presence of Communists, took their toll. Fears associated with the Bolsheviks' seizure of power in Russia, bombings in the United States, along with a series of labor strikes, led to the Red Scare in 1919. Suspected socialists and Communists were arrested and thrown into jail. In the end, of the 5,000 people who were given arrest warrants, only slightly more than 600 aliens were actually deported.
    In addition, the party's failure during the 1920s was due to its inability to appeal to the upwardly mobile worker who yearned to be part of the middle class. The party also was divided along racial and ethnic lines.

    Their broadest appeal was to the well-educated members of society. In 1928, the Socialist presidential candidate, Norman Thomas, received only 267,835 votes. Thomas was a Princeton graduate and Presbyterian minister in New York. He succeeded Debs after the latter's death as the perennial presidential candidate in the 1928, 1932 and 1936 elections. Thomas stood as more indicative of the Socialist Party member, which was made up of mostly intellectuals and the middle class, rather than a worker's party that Debs had basically represented.


    Socialists were also plagued by extreme doubt on the part of most progressives, who were leading the charge to free America from the economic woes of the Great Depression and were weathering deep hostility from conservatives. By the mid-Twenties, the party was deeply divided and failed to revive itself during the depression years of the 1930s.

    During the election of 1932, the Socialist and Communist parties, who had insisted that capitalism had collapsed, pulled less than one million votes combined. American voters had grown weary of Republican policies and therefore Democrats won big in both the Senate and the House of Representatives, illustrating that Americans had faith in their country and its institutions. In that election, Norman Thomas received only 892,000 votes.

    “Creeping socialism,” an expression used in modern times to describe America's so-called drift towards a socialistic society, was coined by author F.A. Hayek in his book The Road to Serfdom. Published in 1944, Hayek's book warned of the dangers of state control over the means of production, which he perceived to be occurring, especially in regards to the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), during the New Deal and the Fair Deal administrations of presidents Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Truman, respectively.

    Hayek believed that excessive governmental controls on society did not deliver on their promises and that their ideology actually delivered dismal economic results. But more importantly, he averred, it produces a psychological change in the character of the people in that man's desire to better himself is what drives him to succeed and also improves the way of life for those around him. According to Hayek, socialism strips man of his desire to succeed.

    Because of the Cold War, McCarthyism, and dominance of the “Middle American” values, the Communist and Socialist parties virtually disappeared in the 1950s, when membership fell to below 2,000 members. Many Socialists left the party because it was seen that more progressive reform could be achieved through membership in the Democratic Party. Among those who departed were: Walter Reuther, Philip Randolph, and Bayard Rustin. Life was good for the average American, who worked fewer than 40 hours per week. Most received annual two-week vacations and had twice the income to spend as they had during the nation's previous economic boom time in the late Twenties.

    During the 1960s and '70s, the Socialist Party exerted little influence on American society because of intra-party conflict, as well as a refusal to support the anti-Vietnam War movement that was sweeping across America. In 1968 at the Socialist Party convention, members passed a resolution to support Democrat Hubert Humphrey for president, instead of nominating their own candidate.

    And in 1972, the body chose to support George McGovern for president. But then for the first time in 20 years, in 1976, the Socialist Party decided to run its own presidential campaign with former Milwaukee mayor Frank Zeidler (1948-1960) for president and J. Quinn Brisben, a Chicago teacher, for vice president. Since that time, others have been nominated, including Willa Kenoyer (1988), J. Quinn Brisben (1992) and Mary Cal Hollis in 1996.

    Modern socialist movements and organizations

    In American society today, socialist groups range in political views from the extreme right to the extreme left. The extreme right wing groups comprise neo-Nazi, anti-Semitic and fascist groups such as the National Socialist Movement or NSM, whose purpose is to “purify” American society through violent and non-violent means. The NSM is said to wear the uniforms and paraphernalia of the Third Reich. According to their website, the NSM is an organization that is “dedicated to the preservation of our Proud Aryan Heritage, and the creation of a National Socialist Society in America and around the world.”

    Representing the far left wing are such groups as the Socialist Party U.S.A. That party believes in what is called “Democratic Socialism," defined as “a political and economic system with freedom and equality for all, so that people may develop to their fullest potential in harmony with others.” The party further states that it is “committed to full freedom of speech, assembly, press, and religion, and to a multi-party system” and that the ownership and control of the production and distribution of goods “should be democratically controlled public agencies, cooperatives, or other collective groups.” Other socialist groups include the Democratic Socialists of America, National Alliance, Young Democrat Socialist, and the Democratic Progressive Party.

    There are also many “anti-socialist” groups, which include the Future of Freedom Foundation, Sons of Liberty, and the Cato Institute. They express various beliefs regarding socialism in America and the rights of the American public.

    Influences of socialism on American society today
    The effects of socialism in America can still be felt today. According to the Future of Freedom Foundation, any government-owned, -funded, or -subsidized operation is considered to be a socialist program. For example, publicly owned airports, sports arenas or government-funded universities would be considered socialist operations by that definition.
    The Social Security Act of 1935, one of Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal creations, is seen by many as a socialist program because it is a government-organized and -regulated system. Social Security was designed to provide retirement benefits to citizens through mandatory donations to the program during one's employment years.

    During the Clinton administration, a plan was proposed to bring down the high costs of health insurance by creating national health insurance. Critics of the national health insurance concept labeled it “socialized medicine” and argued that the individual, not the federal government, had the wisdom and capability to manage his or her own affairs. They argued that deregulation of the health care industry and opening it up to the free market would bring the cost of health care down and increase the availability of care to the American public, which national health insurance would not do.

    Off-site search results for "Socialism in America"...

    Population and Social Rank in Colonial America
    ... far more numerous in the South than in the North, but in no place were they socially or politically of much importance.2 The next higher class, the most numerous of all, comprised the traders, shop-keepers, and small farmers -- the rank and ...

    http://www.usahistory.info/colonial/population.html
    The Populist Party - Democracy in America - Conservative Socialism
    The Contract with America, as it was called, had begun. And eleven years later, if we're to believe DeLay, pork is dead and fiscal discipline reigns supreme. This must explain the $2 million wasted on the USS Sequoia Presidential Yacht. Oh, and ...
    http://www.populistamerica.com/conservative_socialism

    Foreign Affairs - Book Review - Philanthropy and Social Change in Latin America - Edited by Cynthia Sanborn and Felipe Portocarrero
    ... even as he sources Brazilian leadership in the field to business engagement in the national democratization process. In another smart chapter, Francisco Durand knowingly suggests that Peruvian firms do not solicit tax breaks for their ...
    http://www.foreignaffairs.org/20060501fabook85346/cynthia-sanborn-feli ...
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Is The U.S. Moving Toward Socialism? A Socialist Weighs In

    Categories: Radio, Government

    04:09 pm
    September 16, 2010



    by Adam Davidson






    Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty

    The upcoming elections will be decided in large part based on what voters think about economics. So Planet Money is looking into the economic thinking behind much of today's politics.

    We're going to start today with socialism.
    Now, with the notable exception of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, no major figure in American political life identifies as socialist. Certainly no serious contender for national office this November does.

    But socialism has become a large part of the discussion, with many conservative activists arguing that the nation may be "on the road toward a more socialist agenda," as Sarah Palin said this summer.
    There is no evidence that President Obama or any leading Democrat is an avowed socialist. But we did think it would be worth digging a bit deeper into socialism and finding out what a socialist government in the U.S. might look like.

    Right now, the governments of Spain, Portugal, Greece, are headed by socialists. In the recent past, the UK, France, Canada have all been led by socialists. Most countries have an active socialist party; socialism is just one more mainstream way of thinking — on talk shows, on political debates, in the papers.
    I talked to Richard Wolff, a real life American socialist — a Marxist Socialist, even — who is professor emeritus of economics at University of Massachusetts.
    He says that in the 1950s, the U.S. banned socialism from polite discourse.

    "That meant we have now about about two generations worth of people who never really engaged that topic," he says. "It produces both an inability to understand what socialism [and] a gut level rejection and hostility to it."

    And, he says, it produces ignorance of what socialists think these days. Most Americans, he says, think that socialism died alongside the Soviet Union and the shift towards capitalism in China.

    "They don't know that, of course, the experience of Russia and China has also affected socialists," Wolff says. "Over the past 50 years, socialism has changed, dramatically, in every way."

    For example, he says, socialists now say the government shouldn't own everything. You can own your house, your car, even your own business.

    But, he says, socialism is not capitalism.
    Take how companies work. In capitalism, large companies are typically owned by shareholders, directed by a board, and run by a small number of managers.
    Most workers simply work in exchange for a paycheck. Under socialism, many companies would be owned by the workers and would function as a cooperative.

    "Groups of workers make the decisions: what to produce, how to produce, where to produce, and what to do with the profits that are generated," Wolff says.

    The Democrats' health-care reform and stimulus spending came nowhere near the socialist vision, Wolff says.
    A truly socialist government would instantly provide free health care to everyone and government jobs programs to employ every single out of work American — along with a host of other government programs that, these days, it's hard to imagine the U.S. government being able to afford.

    Strangely (or, maybe, not so strangely) Wolff says he loves it every time he hears the word socialism in the media, even if it's out of the mouth of an angry and possibly poorly informed critic.

    He says that for the first time in a long time, socialism is — sort of — back in the public discourse.
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    http://www.dsausa.org/dsa.html

    Democratic Socialists believe that both the economy and society should be run democratically—to meet public needs, not to make profits for a few. To achieve a more just society, many structures of our government and economy must be radically transformed through greater economic and social democracy so that ordinary Americans can participate in the many decisions that affect our lives.

    (RD: So, basically, SCREW anyone that wants to save money to have a decent life when they get old, for example)
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    I've started this thread in an attempt to educate everyone on precisely what America has become and is being changed to - Socialist America.

    We are doomed if we don't reverse this process. And quickly.

    There is an immense amount of information out on the Internet. Most of it should be believed when it comes down to it. They (Progressives) have hidden agendas - and some no-so-hidden plans for each of us.


    http://www.marxists.org/history/etol...list/index.htm



    When the Cochran-Braverman group split from the Socialist Workers Party in 1953, it did not attempt to set up another ‘vanguard’ formation. Instead the organization they formed, called The Socialist Union, was a conscious attempt to pursue a different model. In combination with their monthly magazine, The American Socialist, they attempted to start a new Marxist current that would dispense with the sectarian habits of the past. Although the magazine was published for only six years, from 1954 through 1959, it is still very relevant for today’s activists who are trying to construct new revolutionary organizations that are free of dogmatism and sectarianism.


    This website is devoted to publicizing the magazine and the efforts of the Socialist Union. The American Socialist articles were scanned by Louis Proyect, who is the moderator of the Marxism mailing list at www.marxmail.org. A. Lehrer also played an important role in transferring the files from the late Sol Dollinger’s Socialist Union website to this location.
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2010...-their-caucus/

    The Socialist Party of America
    announced in their October 2009 newsletter that 70 Congressional democrats currently belong to their caucus.
    This admission was recently posted on Scribd.com:
    American Socialist Voter–
    Q: How many members of the U.S. Congress are also members of the DSA?
    A: Seventy
    Q: How many of the DSA members sit on the Judiciary Committee?
    A: Eleven: John Conyers [Chairman of the Judiciary Committee], Tammy Baldwin, Jerrold Nadler, Luis Gutierrez,
    Melvin Watt, Maxine Waters, Hank Johnson, Steve Cohen, Barbara Lee, Robert Wexler, Linda Sanchez [there are 23 Democrats on the Judiciary Committee of which eleven, almost half, are now members of the DSA].
    Q: Who are these members of 111th Congress?
    A: See the listing below
    Co-Chairs
    Hon. Raúl M. Grijalva (AZ-07)
    Hon. Lynn Woolsey (CA-06)
    Vice Chairs
    Hon. Diane Watson (CA-33)
    Hon. Sheila Jackson-Lee (TX-18)
    Hon. Mazie Hirono (HI-02)
    Hon. Dennis Kucinich (OH-10)
    Senate Members
    Hon. Bernie Sanders (VT)
    House Members
    Hon. Neil Abercrombie (HI-01)
    Hon. Tammy Baldwin (WI-02)
    Hon. Xavier Becerra (CA-31)
    Hon. Madeleine Bordallo (GU-AL)
    Hon. Robert Brady (PA-01)
    Hon. Corrine Brown (FL-03)
    Hon. Michael Capuano (MA-08)
    Hon. André Carson (IN-07)
    Hon. Donna Christensen (VI-AL)
    Hon. Yvette Clarke (NY-11)
    Hon. William “Lacy” Clay (MO-01)
    Hon. Emanuel Cleaver (MO-05)
    Hon. Steve Cohen (TN-09)
    Hon. John Conyers (MI-14)
    Hon. Elijah Cummings (MD-07)
    Hon. Danny Davis (IL-07)
    Hon. Peter DeFazio (OR-04)
    Hon. Rosa DeLauro (CT-03)
    Rep. Donna F. Edwards (MD-04)
    Hon. Keith Ellison (MN-05)
    Hon. Sam Farr (CA-17)
    Hon. Chaka Fattah (PA-02)
    Hon. Bob Filner (CA-51)
    Hon. Barney Frank (MA-04)
    Hon. Marcia L. Fudge (OH-11)
    Hon. Alan Grayson (FL-08)
    Hon. Luis Gutierrez (IL-04)
    Hon. John Hall (NY-19)
    Hon. Phil Hare (IL-17)
    Hon. Maurice Hinchey (NY-22)
    Hon. Michael Honda (CA-15)
    Hon. Jesse Jackson, Jr. (IL-02)
    Hon. Eddie Bernice Johnson (TX-30)
    Hon. Hank Johnson (GA-04)
    Hon. Marcy Kaptur (OH-09)
    Hon. Carolyn Kilpatrick (MI-13)
    Hon. Barbara Lee (CA-09)
    Hon. John Lewis (GA-05)
    Hon. David Loebsack (IA-02)
    Hon. Ben R. Lujan (NM-3)
    Hon. Carolyn Maloney (NY-14)
    Hon. Ed Markey (MA-07)
    Hon. Jim McDermott (WA-07)
    Hon. James McGovern (MA-03)
    Hon. George Miller (CA-07)
    Hon. Gwen Moore (WI-04)
    Hon. Jerrold Nadler (NY-08)
    Hon. Eleanor Holmes-Norton (DC-AL)
    Hon. John Olver (MA-01)
    Hon. Ed Pastor (AZ-04)
    Hon. Donald Payne (NJ-10)
    Hon. Chellie Pingree (ME-01)
    Hon. Charles Rangel (NY-15)
    Hon. Laura Richardson (CA-37)
    Hon. Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-34)
    Hon. Bobby Rush (IL-01)
    Hon. Linda Sánchez (CA-47)
    Hon. Jan Schakowsky (IL-09)
    Hon. José Serrano (NY-16)
    Hon. Louise Slaughter (NY-28)
    Hon. Pete Stark (CA-13)
    Hon. Bennie Thompson (MS-02)
    Hon. John Tierney (MA-06)
    Hon. Nydia Velazquez (NY-12)
    Hon. Maxine Waters (CA-35)
    Hon. Mel Watt (NC-12)
    Hon. Henry Waxman (CA-30)
    Hon. Peter Welch (VT-AL)
    Hon. Robert Wexler (FL-19)
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    Default Re: Socialism in America


    Obama Is Remaking America Into Socialism


    by Phyllis Schlafly
    06/02/2009


    Comments

    The younger generation probably doesn't realize that the word socialism means and connotes a system that is profoundly un-American. Socialism has virtually disappeared from our national lexicon since the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) collapsed because of Ronald Reagan's policies and the National Socialist (Nazi) Party was destroyed by the United States in World War II.

    The American Heritage Dictionary defines socialism as a system of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods are owned by a centralized government that plans and controls the economy. Both Webster and Random House identify socialism as a "Marxist theory."

    Socialism requires a totalitarian system -- that gives the ruling gang the power to distribute the fruits of other people's labor to its political pals. That is what is happening to the United States as President Obama proceeds with his goal of "remaking America."

    Although the pro-Obama media have been propping up non-Republicans to lecture us about which topics Republicans are permitted to discuss, we are reminded of the old story about the candidate who challenged his opponent: "Let's have a clean campaign; if you don't tell any lies about me, I won't tell the truth about you."

    Obama acolytes and their media sycophants have been telling lies about Republicans (starting with Gitmo and the CIA), so it's time for Republicans to tell the truth about Obama's dangerous and malicious Marxist policies to spread the wealth of taxpayers to non-taxpayers.

    The Republican National Committee (RNC), which for years had been a stuffy establishment appendage, started to tell the truth on May 20 when it passed a resolution nailing the Obama administration for "proposing, passing and implementing socialist programs through federal legislation" and pushing our country "towards European-style socialism and government control." Nine "Whereases" spell out the political indictment in detail.

    The RNC charges the Democratic Party with passing "trillions of dollars in new government spending, all with strings attached in order to control nearly every aspect of American life," "plans to nationalize the banking, financial and healthcare industries," "massive government bailouts for the mortgage and auto industries" and "paying states to increase their welfare caseloads" by reducing work requirements and increasing handouts.

    Another "Whereas" accuses the Democratic Party of "direct income redistribution" by taking taxes from one group of people and giving "direct cash transfers to another group of people who pay no federal income taxes." The RNC accurately accuses the Democratic Party of taking us in a "European direction," a path the American people have no desire to travel.

    The RNC, which is the governing body of the Republican Party, has helpfully spelled out the differences between the two political parties. The "clear and obvious purpose" of the Democratic majority in Congress is to implement "socialist programs through federal legislation" and to restructure American society "along socialist ideals."

    Do the Republicans have an alternate vision of America's future? You bet they do. The Republicans recognize that free markets and free men, hard work and free enterprise, are the bedrock of American success and the only way to restore prosperity.

    Unable to defend the march toward socialism, Treasury Secretary Geithner just told The Washington Post that the RNC resolution is "ridiculous."

    Obama's takeover of the American auto industry is so breathtaking in scope and power that it proves all the RNC's accusations about socialism. The takeover was followed by orders to close 789 local Chrysler dealers, notices to 1,100 General Motors franchises that they will be shut down by next year and estimates that total dealer shutdowns will rise to 3,000.

    Some of these local dealerships have been family-owned for generations. The Chrysler and GM dealership closings are estimated to eliminate 187,000 jobs, which is more than the number of people who work for the two automakers.

    Now we can see the icing on the cake for the politicians who use economic dictatorship to punish those who resist socialist planners. Nearly every one of the closed local dealerships had donated to Republican candidates, almost none was an Obama contributor, and some dealerships owned by Democrats are not getting the ax.

    These closings come after Obama's extraordinary cash and stock favoritism to one of his principal campaign supporters, the United Auto Workers union. The car czar, Steve Rattner, was a top Democratic fundraiser (surprise, surprise!).

    Obama seems to be captivated by the un-American notion of running the country through Russian-style czars empowered to issue czarist-style ukases. He has already named about 20 czars (more than the Russians had over four centuries), and his latest is a cyber czar.

    This year's deficit will be $1.841 trillion -- $89 billion more than previously estimated. It's so difficult to explain to the American people the gigantic dimensions of what Obama is doing that we are suffering from what has been labeled "insensitivity to scope."

    We hope the RNC resolution will clarify Obama's goals and actions.
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    "Much of progressive, independent political action will continue to occur in Democratic Party primaries in support of candidates who represent a broad progressive coalition. In such instances, democratic socialists will support coalitional campaigns based on labor, women, people of color and other potentially anti-corporate elements... Electoral tactics are only a means for democratic socialists; the building of a powerful anti-corporate coalition is the end..."

    ^ "Where We Stand — The Political Perspective of the Democratic Socialists of America." dsausa.org Retrieved November 3, 2008.
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    http://dsausa.org/about/where.html





    WHERE WE STAND

    The Political Perspective of the
    Democratic Socialists of America


    Table of Contents



    Preamble

    At the beginning of the 20th century, a young and vibrant socialist movement anticipated decades of great advances on the road to a world free from capitalist exploitation -- a socialist society built on the enduring principles of equality, justice and solidarity among peoples.

    At the end of the 20th century, such hope and vision seem all but lost. The unbridled power of transnational corporations, underwritten by the major capitalist nations, has created a world economy where the wealth and power of a few is coupled with insecurity and downward mobility for the vast majority of working people -in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres. Traditional left prescriptions have failed on both sides of the Communist/socialist divide. Global economic integration has rendered obsolete both the social democratic solution of independent national economies sustaining a strong social welfare state and the Communist solution of state-owned national economies fostering social development.

    The globalization of capital requires a renewed vision and tactics. But the essence of the socialist vision--that people can freely and democratically control their community and society--remains central to the movement for radical democracy. Those who point to the collapse of communist regimes, for which the rhetoric of socialism became a cover for authoritarian rule, as proof that capitalism is the foundation of democracy, commit fraud on history. The struggle for mass democracy has always been led by the excluded -- workers, minorities, and women. The wealthy almost never join in unless their own economic freedom appears at stake. The equation of capitalism with democracy cannot survive scrutiny in a world where untrammeled capitalism means unrelenting poverty, disease, and unemployment.

    Today powerful corporate and political elites tell us that environmental standards are too high, unemployment is too low, and workers earn too much for America to prosper in the next century. Their vision is too close for comfort: inequality of wealth and income has grown worse in the last 15 years: one percent of America now owns 60 percent of our wealth, up from 50 percent before Ronald Reagan became president. Nearly three decades after the "War on Poverty" was declared and then quickly abandoned, one-fifth of our society subsists in poverty,living in substandard housing, attending underfunded, overcrowded schools, and receiving inadequate health care.

    In the global capitalist economy, these injustices are magnified a thousand fold. The poorest third of humanity earns two percent of the world's income, while the richest fifth receives two-thirds of global income. And while every middle class household in the developed world aims to own a personal computer, millions elsewhere are forever hungry. Such injustice is not a force of nature, but the logical outcome of the economic dominance of transnational corporations backed by the dominant capitalist governments.

    In this new economic order where sweatshops and child labor are on the rise and capital is freed from historic national constraints, American movements for social justice must of necessity adopt the internationalism of the socialist tradition. Just as Eugene Debs said, "While there is a soul in prison, I am not free" and Martin Luther King proclaimed that, "A threat to justice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere," we must pledge to forge a new international solidarity based the spirit of the abolitionists and suffragists, the labor, peace, and civil rights movements, of modern feminism and environmentalism.

    In the United States, the rise of global capitalism has been accompanied by the increasing strength of conservative and corporate elites and the weakening of social movements and trade unions that have historically been the backbone of mass liberalism. As a result, many socialists and progressives have come to question the tactics and policies that have long comprised the political program of the Left.

    DSA has been in the forefront of this necessary reevaluation of Left strategy and program. For five years, DSA has been engaged in a thoroughgoing discussion of a renewed mission and vision for today's world. No old assumption has been too sacred to be scrutinized, and no new idea has been too provocative to be easily dismissed. Since DSA is a pluralist organization, no single document can adequately and equally reflect our diverse perspectives. But, at the end of our five year evaluation, we have established a political center of gravity to ground these diverse views. This is where we stand:

    We are socialists because we reject an international economic order sustained by private profit, alienated labor, race and gender discrimination, environmental destruction, and brutality and violence in defense of the status quo.

    We are socialists because we share a vision of a humane international social order based both on democratic planning and market mechanisms to achieve equitable distribution of resources,meaningful work, a healthy environment, sustainable growth, gender and racial equality, and non-oppressive relationships.

    A democratic socialist politics for the 21st century must promote an international solidarity dedicated to raising living standards across the globe, rather than "leveling down" in the name of maximizing profits and economic efficiency. Equality, solidarity, and democracy can only be achieved through international political and social cooperation aimed at ensuring that economic institutions benefit all people. Democratic socialists are dedicated to building truly international social movements - of unionists, environmentalists, feminists, and people of color -that together can elevate global justice over brutalizing global competition.

    In the United States, we must fight for a humane public policies that will provide quality health care, education, and job training and that redirect public investment from the military to much-neglected urban housing and infrastructure. Such policies require the support of a majoritarian coalition of trade unionists, people of color, feminists, gays and lesbians and all other peoples committed to democratic change. Our greatest contribution as American socialists to global social justice is to build that coalition, which is key to transforming the power relations of global capitalism.


    Section 1: Democracy, Liberty and Solidarity

    Our vision of socialism is a profoundly democratic one, rooted in the belief that individuals can only reach their full potential in a society that embodies the values of liberty, equality, and solidarity. Only through creating material and cultural bonds of solidarity across racial, gender, age, national,and class lines can true equality of opportunity be achieved.
    Solidarity
    Gender and sexuality. Our conception of socialism is also deeply feminist and anti-racist. We are committed to full equality for women in all spheres of life, in a world without prescribed sex roles that channel women into subordinate positions at home and at work. We seek a world that no longer oppresses women through undervaluation of their work, lack of political representation, the inability to control their own fertility, denial of their sexuality, or violence and abuse. Gender equality requires great changes in social attitudes, in economic and social structures, and in relationships between men and women and adults and children. The socialist society we seek to create will not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation. It will value sexuality and all sexual relationships - gay, lesbian, heterosexual - based on mutual respect and the enhancement of human dignity.

    Racial equality. Our concept of socialism is forthrightly anti-racist. After more than 350 years,racism is deeply ingrained in our country's institutions, social patterns, consciousness, and even social movements. The postwar civil rights movement broke the back of segregation and renewed the struggle against its consequences, bringing to the left in America a new moral vision and a more developed understanding of the importance of community, institutional networks, and popular symbols in shaping a political movement. To be genuinely multiracial, a socialist movement must respect the particular goals of African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, Asian Americans and other communities of color. It must place a high priority on economic justice to eradicate the sources of inequality; on affirmative action and other compensatory programs to overcome ongoing discrimination and the legacy of inequality; and on social justice to change the behavior, attitudes, and ideas that foster racism.
    Democratic community. Democratic socialists recognize that for individuals to flourish, a society must be grounded in the moral values and institutions of a democratic community that provides quality education and job training, social services, and meaningful work for all. Leaving the provision of such common needs to the private marketplace guarantees a starkly inegalitarian class system of access to opportunity.
    Democratic socialists are committed to political institutions based on one voice, one vote, and to the elimination of the pernicious and corrupting influence of corporate money from public political deliberation. Socialist democracy fosters popular participation at every level of decision-making. In an age when global communications technologies are within the reach of hundreds of millions of people, such a commitment means equal access to information, increased democratic - and not corporate - control over public policy, and decentralized, democratic institutions wherever possible in the workplaces, neighborhoods, and schools.
    Liberty
    A democratic commitment to a vibrant pluralist life assumes the need for a democratic,responsive, and representative government to regulate the market, protect the environment, and ensure a basic level of equality and equity for each citizen. In the 21st century, such regulation will increasingly occur through international, multilateral action. But while a democratic state can protect individuals from domination by inordinately powerful, undemocratic transnational corporations, people develop the social bonds that render life meaningful only through cooperative, voluntary relationships. Promoting such bonds is the responsibility of socialists and the government alike. Democratic socialism is committed both to a freedom of speech that does not recoil from dissent, and to the freedom to organize independent trade unions, women's groups, political parties, and other social movements. We are committed to a freedom of religion and conscience that acknowledges the rights of those for whom spiritual concerns are central and the rights of those who reject organized religion. Control of economic, social, and cultural life by either government or corporate elites is hostile to the vision of democratic pluralism embraced by democratic socialism. The social welfare programs of government have been for the most part positive, if partial, responses to the genuine social needs of the great majority of Americans. The dismantling of such programs by conservative and corporate elites in the absence of any alternatives will be disastrous. Abandoning schools, health care, and housing, for example, to the control of an unregulated free market magnifies the existing harsh realities of inequality and injustice.


    Section 2: Democratic Control of Productive and Social Life

    The Capitalist Marketplace
    As democratic socialists we are committed to ensuring that any market is the servant of the public good and not its master. Liberty, equality, and solidarity will require not only democratic control over economic life, but also a progressively financed, decentralized, and quality public sector. Free markets or private charity cannot provide adequate public goods and services.

    Transnational corporate domination does not result merely from the operation of a pure market,but from conscious government actions, from tax policy to deregulation, that structure the economy in the interest of corporate power. The capitalist market economy not only suppresses global living standards, but also means chronic underfunding of socially necessary public goods,from research and development to preventive health care and job training.
    The market and its ideology is rife with internal contradictions. While capitalists abhor public planning as inefficient and counter productive, transnational corporations make decisions with tremendous social consequences, including automation, plant shutdowns and relocations, mergers and acquisitions, new investment and disinvestment--all without democratic input. They also engage in unrelenting efforts to control the market, even through illegal means such as price fixing,antitrust violations, and other collusion.
    In the workplace, capitalism eschews democracy. Individual employees do not negotiate the terms of their employment except in rare circumstances, when their labor is very highly skilled. Without unions, employees are hired and fired at will. Corporations govern through hierarchical power relations more characteristic of monopolies than of free markets. Simply put, the domination of the economy by privately-owned corporation is not the most rational and equitable way to govern our economic life.
    Vision of a Socialist Economy
    The operation of a democratic socialist economy is the subject of continuing debate within DSA. First it must mirror democratic socialism's commitment to institutional and social pluralism. Democratic, representative control over fiscal, monetary, and trade policy would enable citizens to have a voice in setting the basic framework of economic policy--what social investment is needed, who should own or control basic industries, and how they might be governed.

    While broad investment decisions and fiscal and monetary policies are best made by democratic processes, many argue that the market best coordinates supply with demand for goods, services,and labor. Regulated markets can guarantee efficiency, consumer choice and labor mobility. However, democratic socialists recognize that market mechanisms do generate inequalities of wealth and income. But, the social ownership characteristic of a socialist society will greatly limit inequality. In fact, widespread worker and public ownership will greatly lessen the corrosive effect of capitalists markets on people's lives. Social need will outrank narrow profitability as the measure of success for our economic life.
    Interactions of Economy and Society
    Democratic socialists are committed to the development of social movements dedicated to ending any and all forms of noneconomic domination. As activists within these movements, with a visible socialist identity, we bring an analysis of how the globalization of capital influences racism, sexism,homophobia, and environmental degradation.

    Economic democracy alone cannot end the domination of some over others, but it is a prerequisite, especially given how global capital uses racial, national, and gender divisions to divide the world's work force. Yet traditional assumptions about the universal nature of the working class no longer adequately describe who will fight for a radical democracy. People identify with the fight for social justice in many ways. As socialists within the social movements, we bring a vision and politics that argues for the democratic control of transnational corporate power as a necessary,though not sufficient, condition for racial, gender, and economic justice.
    Racism, sexism, xenophobia, and resentment of the poor are exacerbated by economic insecurity.Those threatened by economic restructuring and decline may view less privileged people as competitors or even enemies. For example, some have caricatured affirmative action as a system of strict racial quotas and preferences, ensuring jobs for the non qualified, rather than as a largely successful effort to open up the job market to women and people of color excluded by existing,often prejudicial, methods of recruitment and hiring. Racism, sexism, and homophobia are not the only forms of oppression that both predate capitalism and are continually transformed by it.The persistence of anti-Semitism, for example, has no single explanation. Discrimination based on age is prevalent and affects both young and old. Discrimination occurs in a myriad of forms, and a socialist society must eradicate all of them.
    Ending environmental degradation and building a sustainable world--meeting today's needs without jeopardizing future generations--require new ways of thinking about socialism as well. The depletion of nonrenewable resources and the pollution of our air and water argue both for regulatory protection and reforming market incentives in order to reverse corporate and individual behavior. The victims of pollution are most often people of color and lower income communities. Environmental protection and environmental justice must be part of a democratic socialist agenda.
    Social movements have helped democratic socialists to shape a broader perspective of socialism -one that recognizes that economic change is a necessary, but not sufficient condition for justice.They have guided us toward a deeper pluralist vision of socialism as the humanizing of relationships between men and women, between whites and people of color, and between all of us and the environment.

    Section 3: The Global Economy, Global Politics and the State

    The last decade has witnessed massive shifts in global politics and the global economy. These changes have shaped and been shaped by technological change, a new awareness of humanity's connection to our environment, an increasing recognition of intersection between economics, environment and gender equality, changes in the role of the state and of capital, and much more.Yet the outcome--increasing accumulation of wealth and power in the hands of a few,despoliation of the environment, and individual isolation and alienation, or enhanced quality of life,sustainable development and strengthened communities - remains to be seen.
    The Global Economy
    In the emerging global capitalist economy the controlling economic institutions - the transnational corporations - have integrated financing, production, distribution and consumption on a vast scale.They now have the capacity to function as "stateless" institutions, relatively independent of any particular national economy.

    National governments, even in Western Europe and North America, have ever more difficulty controlling capital, currency flows, and investment while defending the living standards of working people. The result is that the majority of wage and income earners in the advanced capitalist nations are now experiencing a long-term leveling down of wages and living conditions tantamount to a gradual impoverishment of this vast working class. The extent of impoverishment is in dispute, but many economists now believe that only one-fifth of the population is rising in affluence, while the rest are suffering a gradual or abrupt erosion of their living standards.
    Through globalization, capital eludes governmental regulation. The movement of capital across borders, unlike the movement of labor, is all but unrestricted. Indeed, under the World Trade Organization and the North American Free Trade Agreement, laws protecting the rights of workers can be deemed a barrier to free trade.
    Global Environment
    Transnational corporations avoid environmental regulations as well as worker protections. The maquiladoras, or tax-free production zones on the US-Mexican border, are prime examples.Border communities in both countries are feeling the effects of corporate pollution by companies that left the US for Mexico where environmental enforcement is weaker. As with labor rights,NAFTA and the World Trade Organization can restrict enforcement of a nation's environmental laws if they are ruled a barrier to free trade. So as transnational corporations raid the resources of less developed countries and pollute the environment of the North and the South, no international agency has the authority to protect the earth.

    Trade is only one aspect of the global economy. Development fostered by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund has encouraged strategies modeled on the North--resource- and capital-intensive--with little regard for indigenous communities or environments. The end result has too often been enrichment of a wealthy few and increased poverty and environmental hazards for many. Emphasis on industrial agriculture and cash crops has, for example, resulted in the destruction of rain forests and in desertification in some regions.
    International development efforts usually ignore indigenous small scale farming and community development as nonproductive because they fail to generate large amounts of cash, even as they improve living standards. Since such activity is usually the province of women, its displacement has also led to a decline in women's position. Today advocates of sustainable and just development recognize the important connection of environmental protection, eradication of poverty and gender equity.
    Global Politics
    U.S. dominance of the global economy is buttressed by its political power and military might. Indeed, the United States is engaged in a long-term policy of imperial overreach in a period in which global instability will probably increase. Elements of this instability include national, ethnic and religious conflicts; economic decline and stagnation of subordinate capitalist nations; trade rivalries among advanced capitalist nations; and environmental degradation imperiling the quality of life.

    Fifty years of world leadership have taken their toll on the U.S. The links among heavy military spending, fiscal imbalance, and a weakening economy are too clear to ignore. Domestically, the United States faces social and structural economic problems of a magnitude unknown to other advanced capitalist states. The resources needed to sustain U.S. dominance are a drain on the national economy, particularly the most neglected and underdeveloped sectors. Nowhere is a struggle against militarism more pressing than in the United States, where the military budget bleeds the public sector of much needed funds for social programs.
    No country, even a superpower like the United States, can guarantee peace and stability, never mind justice. Only a genuinely multinational armed force can intervene in violent conflicts to enforce generally accepted standards of human rights and democratic practices.
    Such peacekeeping is one important function that must be strengthened within a new global governance. Enforcement of international standards is another. Treaties on human rights, international labor standards, women's rights, environmental protection have all been ratified by many nations (albeit generally not by the US). Enforcement remains problematic. New international regulatory bodies must ensure that the interests of all the world's people are protected with the power to tax transnational corporations that can now escape national taxes.

    Section 4: A Strategy for the Next Left

    Socialists have historically supported public ownership and control of the major economic institutions of society -- the large corporations -- in order to eliminate the injustice and inequality of a class-based society, and have depended on the the organization of a working class party to gain state power to achieve such ends. In the United States, socialists joined with others on the Left to build a broad-based, anti-corporate coalition, with the unions at the center, to address the needs of the majority by opposing the excesses of private enterprise. Many socialists have seen the Democratic Party, since at least the New Deal, as the key political arena in which to consolidate this coalition, because the Democratic Party held the allegiance of our natural allies. Through control of the government by the Democratic Party coalition, led by anti-corporate forces, a progressive program regulating the corporations, redistributing income, fostering economic growth and expanding social programs could be realized.
    With the end of the post-World War II economic boom and the rise of global economic competitors in East Asia and Europe in the 1970s came the demise of the brief majoritarian moment of this progressive coalition that promised--but did not deliver--economic and social justice for all. A vicious corporate assault on the trade union movement and a right-wing racist,populist appeal to downwardly mobile, disgruntled white blue-collar workers contributed to the disintegration of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party in the 1970s and 1980s.
    Today, the mildly redistributive welfare state liberalism of the 1960s, which accepted the corporate dominance of economic decision-making, can no longer be the programmatic basis for a majoritarian progressive politics. New Deal and Great Society liberalism depended upon redistribution at the margins of an ever-expanding economic pie. But today corporations no longer aspire to expand production and consumption by raising global living standards; rather, global capital engages in a race to increase profits by "downsizing" and lowering wages.
    With the collapse of the political economy of corporate liberalism came the atrophy of the very institutions upon which the progressive politics of the New Deal and Great Society had been constructed. No longer do the social bases for a majoritarian democratic politics -- strong trade unions, social movements and urban, Democratic political machines -- simply await mobilization by a proper electoral appeal. Rather, a next left must be built from the grassroots up.
    Given the globalization of economic power, such grassroots movements will increasingly focus upon building a countervailing power to that of the transnational corporations. A number of positive signs of this democratic and grassroots realignment have emerged. New labor leadership has pledged to organize a workforce increasingly constituted by women, people of color, and immigrant workers. Inner-city grassroots community organizations are placing reinvestment, job creation, and economic democracy at the heart of their organizing. The women's movement increasingly argues that only by restructuring work and child care can true gender equality be realized. And the fight for national health care -- a modest reform long provided by all other industrial democracies -- united a broad coalition of activists and constituencies.
    But such movements cannot be solely national in scope. Rather, today's social movements must be as global as the corporate power they confront; they must cooperate across national boundaries and promote interstate democratic regulation of transnational capital.
    If socialism cannot be achieved primarily from above, through a democratic government that owns,control and regulates the major corporations, then it must emerge from below, through a democratic transformation of the institutions of civil society, particularly those in the economic sphere -- in other words, a program for economic democracy.
    As inequalities of wealth and income increase and the wages and living standards of most are either stagnant or falling, social needs expand. Only a revitalized public sector can universally and democratically meet those needs.
    Economic Democracy . Economic democracy can empower wage and income earners through building cooperative and public institutions that own and control local economic resources. Economic democracy means, in the most general terms, the direct ownership and/or control of much of the economic resources of society by the great majority of wage and income earners. Such a transformation of worklife directly embodies and presages the practices and principles of a socialist society.
    Alternative economic institutions, such as cooperatives and consumer, community, and worker-owned facilities are central to economic democracy. Equally important is the assertion of democratic control over private resources such as insurance and credit, making them available for socially responsible investment as well as over land, raw materials, and manufacturing infrastructure. Such democratic control must also encompass existing financial institutions, whose funds can be used to invest in places abandoned or bypassed by transnational capital, such as urban and rural areas, and in sectors of the population that have been historically denied control and ownership of significant economic resources. Such a program will recognize the economic value of childrearing and home care by family members as unpaid labor, and account for this work in all considerations of benefits.
    Key to economic democracy is a democratic labor movement that plays a central role in the struggle for a democratic workplace, whether worker or privately owned. In workplaces that the employees do not own - traditional corporations, family businesses, government, and private nonprofits - only independent, democratically run unions can protect workers.
    The importance of economic democracy extends beyond the ownership and control of economic resources. It is the only way to fulfill the democratic aspirations of the vast majority of Americans. The democratic ideal today has been drastically narrowed in scope and substance to reduce its threat to established power and privilege. The current assault on the welfare state led by corporate and conservative elites is also an attack on political democracy. Democratic socialists must reinvest democracy with its political and economic content to give full voice to popular democratic aspirations.
    Finally, economic democracy is also the only way to mediate and overcome divisions based upon race, gender, religion, and ethnicity that undercut universal social justice.
    Global Justice. A program of global justice can unite opponents of transnational corporations across national boundaries around a common program to transform existing international institutions and invent new global organizations designed to ensure that wages, working conditions, environmental standards and social rights are "leveled up" worldwide. The basis of cooperation for fighting the transnationals must be forged across borders from its inception. Economic nationalism and other forms of chauvinism will doom any expanded anti-corporate agenda.
    The international financial institutions serving the interests of transnational capital are important arenas of struggle for a global social and environmental agenda. Elements of this agenda include efforts to advance social charters in free trade agreements; to propose alternative investment strategies for the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund; to strengthen the enforcement of existing treaties on the environment, labor standards, social policies etc.; and to promote international standards that put social justice before corporate profit. Stronger international ties among trade unions and joint actions across borders in defense of wage standards, working conditions and social rights are critical.
    Social Redistribution. Social redistribution--the shift of wealth and resources from the rich to the rest of society--will require:

    1. massive redistribution of income from corporations and the wealthy to wage earners and the poor and the public sector, in order to provide the main source of new funds for social programs,income maintenance and infrastructure rehabilitation, and
    2. a massive shift of public resources from the military (the main user of existing discretionary funds) to civilian uses.

    Although such reforms will be very difficult to achieve on a national scale in the short term, their urgency increases as income inequality intensifies. Over time, income redistribution and social programs will be critical not only to the poor but to the great majority of working people. The defense and expansion of government programs that promote social justice, equal education for all children, universal health care, environmental protection and guaranteed minimum income and social well-being is critical for the next Left.
    At the same time, the military Keynesianism that has dominated federal expenditures, constricting the capacity of governments at all levels to respond adequately to social needs, must end. Much of the current distortion in government spending and taxation has its roots in the massive military and national security build-up in the 1980s, combined with the massive tax cuts for the wealthy. The great run-up in national debt is due directly to military-led deficit financing. Reduced military expenditures and more equitable taxation represent the only sources of funds on the scale needed to provide the social programs required to ameliorate declining living standards.
    Together, economic democracy, global justice, and social redistribution are the linchpins of abroad-based anti-corporate left, that is international in character and local in its reliance on popular control of economic resources and decision-making.

    Section 5: The Role of Electoral Politics


    Democratic socialists reject an either-or approach to electoral coalition building, focused solely on anew party or on realignment within the Democratic Party. The growth of PAC-driven,candidate-based, entrepreneurial politics in the last 25 years leaves little hope for an immediate,principled electoral response to the rightward, pro-corporate drift in American politics. The fundamental task of democratic socialists is to build anti-corporate social movements capable of winning reforms that empower people. Since such social movements seek to influence state policy,they will intervene in electoral politics, whether through Democratic primaries, non-partisan local elections, or third party efforts. Our electoral work aims at building majoritarian coalitions capable of not only electing public officials on the anti-corporate program of these movements, but also of holding officials accountable after they are elected.
    The U.S. electoral system makes third parties difficult to build at both the national and state level.Winner take-all districts; the absence of proportional representation; open primaries; executive-run governments that make coalition governments impossible; state legislative control over ballot access and election laws all combine to impede third parties. Much of progressive, independent political action will continue to occur in Democratic Party primaries in support of candidates who represent a broad progressive coalition. In such instances, democratic socialists will support coalitional campaigns based on labor, women, people of color and other potentially anti-corporate elements.
    Electoral tactics are only a means for democratic socialists; the building of a powerful anti-corporate coalition is the end. Where third party or non-partisan candidates mobilize such coalitions, democratic socialists will build such organizations and candidacies. However, to democratize U.S. electoral politics - whatever its party form -requires serious campaign finance reform both within and without the Democratic Party.

    Section 6: The Role of Democratic Socialists

    Any differences are due to changing conditions,and not changing principles. The continuities are unmistakable. The same spirit animates both documents.

    In fact, the most important difference between the documents is neither strategy nor program,mission nor vision, but rather expectation. The founding document called for carrying out a strategy and program that were already the mainstays of mass liberalism, but moving this broad liberal coalition considerably to the left. DSA's new document points in another direction, toward the founding of a new progressive movement...a next Left. That is because the political momentum of mass liberalism is depleted. If we once positioned ourselves as the left wing of the possible, there is now no "possible" to be the left wing of. Of course, considerable opposition has arisen in response to the program of the conservative and corporate elites. But, that opposition confronts a profound crisis of leadership, particularly at the national level.

    Increasingly, many of our fellow citizens recognize that the American dream is becoming a chimera. We as democratic socialists believe that it can be made real. No laws of nature or "free markets" dictate that we must destroy our environment, worsen global inequality, squander funds on useless deadly weapons, and continue to relegate women and people of color to second-class citizenship. But if the American dream is indeed ever more elusive, we seek much more than to simply revive it as an aspiration. For in one respect the right-wing would-be prophets are correct: The success of global capitalism demands that traditional democratic standards of justice, equality,and decency be undermined. For the simple dream of a comfortable standard of living, of community, and of equity to be realized, radical political, economic, and social changes in the established order are required.
    The belief is widespread that we stand at the beginning of a new political era -- that the Left must create a new vision and a new mission rooted in a new sense of purpose. Democratic socialists have an historic opportunity and responsibility to play a central role in the founding of a next Left, and DSA is prepared to meet this challenge. We invite you to join us in this effort worthy of a lifetime of commitment.
    Libertatem Prius!


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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Is the U.S. Capitalist, Socialist or Something In-between?


    by Peter Smirniotopoulos 12/06/2008



    During the Presidential campaign, then-Democratic candidate Barack Obama inartfully described his proposed federal income tax cuts for the middle class as “sharing the wealth.” His more strident right-wing opponents – including Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin – almost immediately labeled Obama “a socialist,” adding to a litany of alleged infirmities as a presidential candidate that included lacking executive experience; being a closet Muslim; and “someone who pals around with terrorists.”
    Yet in reality Obama’s middle class tax proposal may have been the least “socialist” concept that has been floated and acted upon by a broad array of elected officials and senior-level appointees since four weeks before and four weeks after the Presidential election. This includes not only the huge federal financial bailout and taking of ownership of major investment and commercial banks – something embraced by the establishments of both political parties and the putative ‘capitalist’ business elites – but a series of other proposals, including the bailout of the Big Three American automakers, that are far more socialistic than a tax cut.
    Of course, effective campaigning, like good television advertising, tends to have at least two fundamental characteristics in common – oversimplification and hyperbole – so one might forgive or ignore the campaigns for taking liberties with such terms. Yet the ready and frequent use of the term “socialist” by a variety of sources does raise serious questions as to whether anyone out there really understands either capitalism or socialism as concepts or political constructs. This might help us know how much we should apply either label to the U.S. given the prevailing economic malady and the series of palliatives being offered up by the current and future Administrations, respectively.
    Socialism, of course, places primary ownership of the means of production in the hands of the state, or in some cases, corporate entities controlled by the state. In its extreme cases, such as in North Korea, this reality is absolute; in many other countries, state control is predominant and preeminent but pockets of private enterprise, usually small-scale and concentrated in agriculture or business services, still exist.
    Capitalism is a much more vague idea but essentially reverses priorities, putting the predominant role in the hands of private interests such as investors and corporations. State power in a capitalist country usually focuses on the creation of standards, public health, safety, and welfare, such things as regulating the currency, protecting the environment, and assuring the health of the populace.
    In contrast to the 19th Century, the US already operates on a much-diluted form of capitalism. Our markets are not free; they are highly regulated (and yet many would today argue they are not highly regulated enough). The exchange rates and values of our currency do not float freely but are heavily manipulated through federal government rate-setting activities. Investment decisions are not driven purely by return expectations or classic risk/reward analyses; rather they are incentivized or discouraged by a byzantine system of rewards and penalties affectionately known as the Internal Revenue Code. In other words, the federal government – under both Democrat and Republican Administrations and supported by both Houses of Congress – intervenes routinely in how markets operate and how capital is deployed. In this sense the federal tax code is fundamentally a mechanism for wealth redistribution, so candidate Obama’s statement about his proposed middle-class tax cut simply represented a shift to one set of priorities, much as the Bush Administration’s tax cuts represented another.
    If you accept the premise above that the U.S. already had one foot out the doorway between a more pure form of capitalism and socialism as it is widely practiced in other Westernized countries, it now appears that the U.S. is being pulled at warp speed through that doorway, as a consequence of the myriad plans (schemes would be a more accurate description, given how little thought appears to be devoted to them before rolling them out at press conference after press conference) for bailing out various classically capitalistic institutions.
    Bailing out a completely broken mortgage finance system that rewarded handsomely (some would say shamelessly) myriad private-sector entities and the mortgage industry represents a shift towards socialism. Providing over $100 billion in taxpayer support for AIG is socialism, not capitalism. Providing $200 billion of taxpayer support to prop up consumer credit, so that Americans can return to a false economy predicated upon unbridled, conspicuous consumption, is socialism not capitalism.
    The fact that these and other extraordinary moves by the federal government are undertaken in the name of saving our capitalistic economy and staving off a severe economic depression does not change the fact that we are experiencing – first under Bush and soon under Obama – a powerful drift towards extended state control of the economy. Free-wheeling and unfettered profit-making and corporate greed on the way up, backstopped by enormous government bailouts on the way down, represents in some ways the worst of both worlds .
    We now add to this series of attempts to solve our economic crisis the so-called “New, New Deal” proposed by President-elect Obama the week before Thanksgiving. Focused on fixing America’s infrastructure improvements, technological innovation, and education – as well as the creation of 2.5 million new jobs in the process – the New, New Deal basically supplants a failed, quasi-capitalistic economy with one that is driven primarily by government spending on government projects, in part for the purpose of creating new government jobs.
    There will be two silver linings if all of these government bail-out strategies and the implementation of Obama’s New, New Deal succeed: The U.S. could emerge from this economic abyss in which we find ourselves; and pass, at last, a comprehensive, universal healthcare reform that will not look nearly as socialistic as it may have appeared only six months ago.
    Yet there are some real dangers as well. A massive government program that extends more and more into every aspect of the economy could bring enormous inefficiencies as political decisions overtake market-based decision-making. It is not beyond the pale, for example, that banks may make loans to customers not based on their fundamental ability to pay but their ability to shift their risks to the government. Land use and other decisions once left to markets and localities could be placed in the hands of federal regulators, where the influence of well-connected developers and special interests (including such laudable causes as environmental protection) could be profound.
    Of course, this is a situation that could also change our national geography in profound ways. Parts of the country well-plugged into the new ruling party – the Northeast, coastal California, and most of all Chicago – could be huge beneficiaries. But the real winner, as I have argued before, may be the Nation’s Capital and its environs, whose power over the private economy would be greater than at any time since the Second World War.
    Of course, it may perhaps be both overly simplistic and somewhat hyperbolic to suggest that Washington, D.C. is morphing into "Pyongyang on the Potomac." However, unless the federal rescue of our fundamentally capitalistic economy and society is not very carefully orchestrated, we may see greater similarities with another centrally planned economy – the one run from Paris. In that case, similarities between Paris and Washington, D.C. may extend well beyond the boulevarded street network and classical scale bestowed upon us by Pierre L'Enfant; we could also end up with something more akin to France's centrally controlled dirigiste system than anyone could have expected.
    Peter Smirniotopoulos, Vice President – Development of UniDev, LLC, is based in the company’s headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland, and works throughout the U.S. He is on the faculty of the Masters in Science in Real Estate program at Johns Hopkins University. The views expressed herein are solely his own.
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    http://socialistparty-usa.org/

    Things on that site:

    Justice for Trayvon Means a Democratic Revolution: Statement by SPUSA National Action committee

    Occupy Wall St!
    The Socialist Party USA supports the mobilizations to occupy Wall St. in New York and various cities across the US and encourages our locals to take part in these actions. SPUSA Occupy! website here
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    http://www.aim.org/aim-column/gingri...ica-confirmed/





    Gingrich Charge of a Socialist America Confirmed

    Cliff Kincaid — December 7, 2011







    Democrats say they have dirt on Newt Gingrich, but he has the dirt on them. He has accurately described the socialist infiltration of America: “The Left has thoroughly infiltrated nearly every cultural commanding height of our civilization. That is, they hold power, influence and control of academia, the elite news media, Hollywood, union leaders, trial lawyers, the courts, the Congress, and the bureaucracy at all levels of government. They are radically redefining our very culture by deciding what is news, what is entertainment, what our children learn in school, and what kind of government we should have.”


    When Gingrich made this charge, the left-wing scandal sheet Politico reacted with alarm, as if Gingrich had crossed the line of respectable discourse. But the publication was not able to rebut his assertion.


    Confirmation of Gingrich’s statement, which came in an article about his book, To Save America: Stopping Obama’s Secular-Socialist Machine, has come from an unlikely source—John Nichols, a writer for The Nation magazine. Speaking to the recent Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) conference, Nichols said that the progressive movement is on the move, citing Big Labor’s organizing efforts in several states, and indicated that the 2012 elections will continue this process of revolutionary change.


    According to the Nichols book, The “S” Word, America’s socialist legacy included founding father Thomas Paine. The “S” stands for socialism, “an American tradition,” Nichols claims. And this, he said, is America’s future.


    But not so fast. Professor Harvey J. Kaye, the Ben & Joyce Rosenberg Professor of Democracy and Justice Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, wrote the book Thomas Paine: Firebrand of the Revolution, which is popular with the so-called “progressives.” He says that while Paine had some radical ideas about poverty and government assistance, “He was not a socialist; he did not contest the right of the propertied to their property.”


    Indeed, in his Rights of Man, Paine recognized the inalienable rights to property, liberty, security, and resistance to oppression. Private property, which communists want to abolish, was the cornerstone of the American system. America’s founding was a repudiation of socialist ideas.


    While Nichols is wrong about the socialism of Tom Paine, his point about the march of socialism in the U.S. is not something that can be so easily dismissed. Nichols’ book, as well as another controversial book, Lincoln’s Marxists, describes the determined activities of socialists in America in the 1800s. They have always looked for an opening to advance their un-American ideas on American soil. Over the last three years, Obama has been their vehicle in the White House.


    The problem for Nichols is that, despite his own openness about wanting to be part of Obama’s socialist transformation of America, the effort has used deceptive practices and tactics and associates with sworn enemies of the United States.



    Nichols says he owes a debt to his late friend, Howard Zinn, a “historian” who concealed his involvement in the Moscow-funded Communist Party until his FBI file confirmed his secret life. The revelations have not caused “progressives” like Nichols to have any second thoughts about their admiration for Zinn.


    The socialist-communist alliance, which backed Obama from the start of his political career in Chicago, has been making strides. “Polls tell us that democratic socialism is more popular today that at any time in recent American history,” Nichols says. He cites polls that 20-25 percent of Americans view socialism positively, with the number at 43 percent among those ages 18-29. The polls also find that Americans are increasingly critical of the capitalist system that made America the envy and target of the rest of the world.


    Yahoo News noted that pollster Frank Luntz is advising Republicans on how to respond to the coverage generated by the Occupy Wall Street movement and that he is “frightened to death” because “They’re having an impact on what the American people think of capitalism.”


    Luntz is referring to the sympathetic coverage of the movement, standing in sharp contrast to the media’s demonization of the Tea Party.


    Luntz is telling Republican politicians not to even talk about capitalism being a superior economic and political system. “I’m trying to get that word removed and we’re replacing it with either ‘economic freedom’ or ‘free market,’” Luntz said. “The public . . . still prefers capitalism to socialism, but they think capitalism is immoral.”


    This state of affairs requires a media that will tell the truth about how socialists, who are increasingly out of the closet these days and supported by billionaire George Soros, are distorting America’s founding and transforming the United States into something it was never intended to be. It is the struggle that will decide the future of America.


    The Gingrich book, To Save America, addresses the subversive role being played by George Soros and other rich liberal billionaires such as Herb and Marion Sandler, who have funded such left-wing media operations as ProPublica. This is the group that just announced a “cooperative newsgathering and reporting arrangement” with NBC owned television stations around the U.S. ProPublica’s “partners” already include such outlets as ABC News, The Baltimore Sun, The Boston Globe, CBS News, CNN, The Huffington Post and public broadcasting’s Frontline.


    For his part, John Nichols gives credit in his book to the support given to him by MSNBC, Al-Jazeera, Wisconsin Public Radio, and MSNBC host Chris Hayes, among others.


    If the liberal media will not tell the truth, and if the conservative media do not have the ability to make the case for capitalism and freedom, politicians such as Newt Gingrich may have to do so in the context of a presidential campaign. His challenge will be to survive the personal attacks from the machine that he attacks.
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Socialist Obama Envisions A Socialist America

    Monday, 09 April 2012 04:13 J. D. Longstreet





    Socialism IS Slavery -- To The State!


    so·cial·ism NOUN: 1. Any of various theories or systems of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy.

    2. The stage in Marxist-Leninist theory intermediate between capitalism and communism, in which collective ownership of the economy under the dictatorship of the proletariat has not yet been successfully achieved. (SOURCE)


    The definition above clearly describes Obama's agenda for America. Socialism.



    Every time those of us who clearly see America's President for what he is and dare to speak out publicly about the dangers to American freedom and liberty Mr. Obama's agenda presents -- we are attacked as ignorant boobs. The attacks themselves are a key part of the way socialism works -- silence those who would warn of the danger socialism presents.


    As Mr. Obama is campaigning for another chance to bring America to her knees, there are those on the socialist plantation in America preparing to flock to the polls and vote to draw the chains of socialism even tighter around themselves and all Americans. They are the people the fathers of Marxism and communism referred to as: “useful idiots.”


    Future historians will write of the ignorance of the American electorate in the early 21st century and wonder at their lack of reasoning. I sincerely doubt those future historians writing about us will be Americans, however. By that time, the “American iron curtain” will have fallen and we will be engulfed in the darkness of communism.
    My maternal grandmother had the ability to see short distances into the future and make accurate predictions. Nothing was made of it. In our family, it was something that was, well, just there. I grew up in an atmosphere in which groping into the future, mostly with little success, was not uncommon in our family. But, I sometimes think, a bit of my grandmother’s ability may have been attached to my DNA. Frankly, I rather hope it has not.



    If I remark that I have a bad feeling about something, my family takes notice and plans accordingly. Me? I worry.



    On one occasion, my family and I were going on a road trip. I felt awful about it. Something was telling me, literally shouting in my mind “don’t go.” My wife was driving that day. A few blocks from home, I demanded that she stop the car. She pulled over and I got out.



    We had this protracted discussion at curbside as to why, I didn’t want to go, and I could not give a reasonable answer -- except that something was very wrong.



    Finally, after a great deal of persuasion from both my wife and my daughter, I got back in the car and we continued our road trip. About ten miles down the hiway we had a head-on collision with a drunk driver attempting to make a U-turn in front of us.


    We were all belted but my passenger seat broke away from its mount and my head crashed into the windshield smashing it (the windshield) and giving me one heck of a headache.


    The car was totaled.


    The local hospital cleared us all with bruises, contusions, and possibly a light concussion for yours truly.


    That is just one example from many such, uh, “premonitions.” I hasten to add that I believe all human beings have the ability to sense danger. But it does seem to be more pronounced in some, for whatever reason.


    True premonitions are rarely wrong. Science tells us that premonitions are based on human emotions. That alone should cause us to question them. But here’s the thing. Just being wrong once or twice causes one to wonder WHEN is the feeling right—and -- WHEN is the feeling wrong. See the dilemma? It will, most certainly, make a worrier of any person endowed (or cursed) with them. It is, in my opinion, truly a curse.


    No, I am not about to make a prediction! But I am deeply worried/concerned about the coming Presidential Election -- and -- I am about to issue a warning.


    I am just as concerned about the coming Presidential Election as I was over the auto wreck, I noted above. Those of us who live along America’s southeastern coast know when the Coast Guard runs up the hurricane warning flags, it is time to pay close attention and prepare for the coming storm.


    I fear for America. A storm is coming. Here’s why I say that:




    America is dangerously split. Our Congress is a very good example of where the American people are at this moment in history – split, divided. As a result, the election in November could just as easily swing one way as it could the other. Many will disagree with me. I expect that, I respect that, and I understand that.


    The GOP has never gone up against a candidate as devious, unscrupulous, and self-assured as Obama. Obama is what I would call “neo-evil.” I do not think the Republicans are anywhere near ready for that with which they are about to be inundated.



    Look. A man who will attack the Supreme Court in a State of the Union Address – with the court sitting right in front of him, and then issue thinly veiled threats at them, again, over the fifty-fifty chance that his signature achievement – Obamacare – might be ruled unconstitutional -- is capable of doing whatever he feels is necessary to secure a second term as President.


    Obama’s machine, and it is as huge and powerful a political machine as this nation as ever seen (far exceeding anything Romney and the Republicans can muster) has been at work since his first election. They are dug-in in all 50 states just awaiting the word to begin shredding the Republican nominee.


    Obama has no problem comparing himself to Abraham Lincoln, even Ronald Reagan when, in fact, he resembles Hugo Chavez in Venezuela more than ANY past US President. Obama’s efforts within his administration all seem to indicate that he is attempting to recreate a Chavez regime here, in America.


    A socialist is a person who has decided that capitalism doesn’t work and is striving toward communism. Socialism is only the middle phase between capitalism and communism. That middle phase is where Obama is today and he is striving toward the latter -- and he intends to drag America into the cesspool with him.


    I am not going to predict that Obama will win in November. I don’t think I need do that. I think just watching the campaign the next few months will be all that is necessary to convince you that I am not just whistling Dixie. Of course, by that time, it will be too late.


    J. D. Longstreet is a conservative Southern American (A native sandlapper and an adopted Tar Heel) with a deep passion for the history, heritage, and culture of the southern states of America. At the same time he is a deeply loyal American believing strongly in "America First".· He is a thirty-year veteran of the broadcastingbusiness, as an "in the field" and "on-air" news reporter (contributing to radio, TV, and newspapers) and a conservative broadcast commentator.


    Longstreet is a veteran of the US Army and US Army Reserve. He is a member of the American Legion and the Sons of Confederate Veterans.· A lifelong Christian, Longstreet subscribes to "old Lutheranism" to express and exercise his faith.
    Articles by J.D. Longstreet are posted at: "INSIGHT on Freedom",· "Hurricane Alley... by Longstreet",· "The Carolina Post" and numerous other conservative websites around the web.·
    Libertatem Prius!


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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Merriam-Webster look-up hawks choose 2 2012 words of the year: capitalism and socialism


    By Associated Press, Updated: Wednesday, December 5, 7:15 AM

    NEW YORK — Thanks to the election, socialism and capitalism are forever wed as Merriam-Webster’s most looked-up words of 2012.


    Traffic for the unlikely pair on the company’s website about doubled this year from the year before as the health care debate heated up and discussion intensified over “American capitalism” versus “European socialism,” said the editor at large, Peter Sokolowski.




    The choice revealed Wednesday was “kind of a no-brainer,” he said. The side-by-side interest among political candidates and around kitchen tables prompted the dictionary folk to settle on two words of the year rather than one for the first time since the accolade began in 2003.


    “They’re words that sort of encapsulate the zeitgeist. They’re words that are in the national conversation,” said Sokolowski from company headquarters in Springfield, Mass. “The thing about an election year is it generates a huge amount of very specific interest.”


    Democracy, globalization, marriage and bigot — all touched by politics — made the Top 10, in no particular order. The latter two were driven in part by the fight for same-sex marriage acceptance.


    Last year’s word of the year was austerity. Before that, it was pragmatic. Other words in the leading dictionary maker’s Top 10 for 2012 were also politically motivated.


    Harken back to Oct. 11, when Vice President Joe Biden tangled with Mitt Romney running mate Paul Ryan in a televised debate focused on foreign policy — terror attacks, defense spending and war, to be specific.


    “With all due respect, that’s a bunch of MALARKEY,” declared Biden during a particularly tough row with Ryan. The mention sent look-ups of malarkey soaring on Merriam-webster.com, Sokolowski said, adding: “Clearly a one-week wonder, but what a week!”


    Actually, it was more like what a day. Look-ups of malarkey represented the largest spike of a single word on the website by percentage, at 3,000 percent, in a single 24-hour period this year. The company won’t release the number of page views per word but said the site gets about 1.2 billion overall each year.


    Malarkey, with the alternative spelling of “y’’ at the end, is of unknown origin, but Merriam-Webster surmises it’s more Irish-American than Irish, tracing it to newspaper references as far back as 1929.


    Beyond “nonsense,” malarkey can mean “insincere or pretentious talk or writing designed to impress one and usually to distract attention from ulterior motives or actual conditions,” noted Sokolowski.


    “That’s exactly what Joe Biden was saying. Very precise,” especially in conversation with another Irish-American, Sokolowski said. “He chose a word that resonated with the public, I think in part because it really resonated with him. It made perfect sense for this man to use this word in this moment.”


    An interesting election-related phenom, to be sure, but malarkey is no dead Big Bird or “binders full of women” — two Romneyisms from the defeated candidate’s televised matchups with Obama that evoked another of Merriam-Webster’s Top 10 — meme.

    While malarkey’s history is shaded, meme’s roots are easily traced to evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, a Brit who coined the term for a unit of cultural inheritance, not unlike genes and DNA. The retired professor at the University of Oxford made up the word in 1976 for “The Selfish Gene,” a book he published light years before the Internet and social media’s capacity to take memes viral.


    Sokolowski said traffic for meme more than doubled this year over 2011, with dramatic spikes pegged to political-related subjects that included Romney’s Big Bird and binders remarks, social media shares of images pegged to Hillary Clinton texting and Obama’s “horses and bayonets” debate rebuke of Romney in an exchange over the size of the Navy.




    Personal Post



    Dawkins, reached at home in Oxford, was tickled by the dictionary shoutout.


    “I’m very pleased that it’s one of the 10 words that got picked out,” he said. “I’m delighted. I hope it may bring more people to understand something about evolution.”


    The book in which he used meme for the first time is mostly about the gene as the primary unit of natural selection, or the Darwinian idea that only the strongest survive. In the last chapter, he said, he wanted to describe some sort of cultural replicator.


    And he wanted a word that sounded like “gene,” so he took a twist on the Greek mimeme, which is the origin of “mime” and “mimesis,” a scientific term meaning imitation.


    “It’s a very clever coinage,” lauded the lexicographer Sokolowski.


    Other words in Merriam-Webster’s Top 10 for 2012:


    — Touche, thanks in part to “Survivor” contestant Kat Edorsson misusing the word to mean “tough luck” rather than point well made, before she was voted off the island in May. Look-ups at Merriam-webster.com were up sevenfold this year over 2011.


    — Schadenfreude, made up of the German words for “damage” and “joy,” meaning taking pleasure in the misery of others, was used broadly in the media after the election. Look-ups increased 75 percent. The word in English dates to 1895.


    — Professionalism, up 12 percent this year over last. Sokolowski suspects the bump might have been due to the bad economy and more job seekers, or a knowing “glimpse into what qualities people value.”
    ___
    Online: http://www.merriam-webster.com/

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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Gallup: 53 Percent of Democrats Have ‘Positive Image’ of Socialism

    By Jon Street
    December 5, 2012


    President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)


    (CNSNews.com) - According to a recent Gallup poll that asked participants if they have a positive or negative image of socialism, 53 percent of Democrats and “leaning democrats” said they have a positive image while 23 percent of Republicans and “leaning republicans” said their image is positive.

    In a poll conducted Nov. 18-19, Gallup asked, “Just off the top of your head, would you say you have a positive or negative view of each of the following?”

    Fifty-three percent of Democrats and “leaning Democrats” said they have a positive view of socialism while 23 percent of Republicans said the same.

    When asked the same question about small business, free enterprise, and entrepreneurs, 94 percent, 88 percent, and 84 percent of Democrats and “leaning Democrats,” respectively, responded by saying their image was “positive.

    On the other hand, Republicans and “leaning republicans” view of small business, free enterprise, and entrepreneurs was 95 percent, 94 percent, and 91 percent positive, respectively.

    Concerning the topics of capitalism, big business, and the federal government, 55 percent, 44 percent, and 75 percent of Democrats and “leaning Democrats,” respectively, said their views were positive, while 75 percent, 72 percent, and 27 percent of Republicans and “leaning Republicans,” respectively, said their views are positive.

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    Nikita Khrushchev: "We will bury you"
    "Your grandchildren will live under communism."
    “You Americans are so gullible.
    No, you won’t accept
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    until you’ll finally wake up and find you already have communism.

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    like overripe fruit into our hands."



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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Now we know why he was re-elected....

    "Fifty-three percent of Democrats and “leaning Democrats” said they have a positive view of socialism while 23 percent of Republicans said the same."

    lemme see... 53+23 = 76....

    Idiots.
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Gingrich envisions 'permanent' partisan warfare

    By Steve Benen
    -
    Mon Dec 10, 2012 9:26 AM EST



    Last week, Rep. Pete Roskam (R-Ill.), a leading lieutenant to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), complained that President Obama should do more to make congressional Republicans happy.
    "President Obama has an unbelievable opportunity to be a transformational president — that is, to bring the country together," Roskam said. "Or he can devolve into zero-sum-game politics, where he wins and other people lose."
    On "Meet the Press" yesterday, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) made a similar argument.
    For those who can't watch clips online, Gingrich, making his ninth "Meet the Press" appearance of 2012, argued:
    "This president has a chance as he did in '09 to come in and say, 'I'm going to sit down and work with you. We're going to be bipartisan, we're going to put the country first,' or he has a chance to do what he did in '09, which is say, 'I'm going to write a stimulus package with only Democrats and ram it through unread.' He can continue down the road he's on right now. He guarantees a permanent war because everybody on the right at every level sooner or later is going to get sick of it."
    Just to be clear, the former House Speaker wasn't kidding. He seemed to genuinely believe what he was saying.
    In Gingrich's version of reality, like Roskam's, it's Obama who's a fierce partisan, unwilling to compromise with people with whom he disagrees.
    I can't say with confidence how many Americans actually believe such nonsense, but it's remarkable to hear the perspective spoken aloud. For four years, congressional Republicans have refused to work with the Obama White House on anything. GOP leaders have freely admitted that made a deliberate decision never to compromise or work constructively with the president, even when he proposed Republican ideas.
    On practically every issue, Obama reached out to GOP officials, pleading with them to work with him in good faith, and in literally every instance, they refused, instead embracing a scorched-earth strategy in which defeating the president was their sole priority. This began literally the same Obama was inaugurated.
    The result has been unprecedented obstructionism and the most toxic political atmosphere since Gingrich led an impeachment crusade against President Clinton.
    And yet, despite these past four years, according to Gingrich, there will be a "permanent war" between the parties unless Obama does even more to make Republicans happy. Why? Because GOP policymakers are "sick of" how mean the president is to them.
    It's like peeking into an alternate universe.
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Did you even read that article? The author is clearly implying that Obama has already caved too much to republicans and that Obama shouldn't compromise.
    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
    -- Theodore Roosevelt


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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Yeah, I read it. lol.

    I posted it partially because of that, and partially because I heard Gingrich say as much this morning.

    There's already evidence there's a "war" on, and that article is it. lol
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Sometimes I guess when I post things it's too subtle. I see the "joke" or irony in it, and others perhaps miss it.

    Or at least see it differently than I saw it.

    Sorry Mal
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    Default Re: Socialism in America

    Newt Gingrich: Republicans Today Would Be ‘Incapable of Competing’ Against Hillary Clinton in 2016






    Former House Speaker and Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich said the current GOP would be “incapable of competing” against Hillary Clinton should she run in 2016.

    Gingrich on NBC’s “Meet the Press” called Clinton a “very formidable” person who is married to “the most popular Democrat in the country.”

    “If [the Republicans'] competitor in ’16 is going to be Hillary Clinton, supported by Bill Clinton and presumably, a still relatively popular President Barack Obama, trying to win that will be truly the Super Bowl. And the Republican Party today is incapable of competing at that level,” Gingrich said.

    Gingrich also said the reason Republicans lost the White House last month was “much more than Mitt Romney.”

    “We didn’t blow it because of Mitt Romney, we blew it because of a party which has refused to engage the reality of American life and refused to think through what the average American needs for a better future,” he said.



    Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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    "Your grandchildren will live under communism."
    “You Americans are so gullible.
    No, you won’t accept
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    outright, but we’ll keep feeding you small doses of
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    until you’ll finally wake up and find you already have communism.

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    ."
    We’ll so weaken your
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    until you’ll
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    like overripe fruit into our hands."



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