Democrats Aren't Lurching Left They've Been There For A Long, Long Time
By Don Feder
February 10, 2020
The dumbest observation of the 2020 campaign is that the Democratic Party is lurching to the left. For over a century, the Democrats have been the party of the left. How can you lurch to where you already are? It's more accurate to say that they are moving even further left.
The Democrats aren't becoming socialist. Many are finally admitting they're socialists. The socialist elements in American life are all due to the Party of Wilson, FDR, LBJ and Obama.
The Democrats are the party of government-is-God. It's the party of tax-and-spend, mega-deficits (though Republicans are no slouches here either), ruinous regulation, confiscatory taxation, income-leveling, and a constantly changing smorgasbord of new programs for the dining pleasure of the naοve and greedy.
Democrats gave us the graduated income tax, income tax withholding, Social Security, AFDC, the Supplemental Nutrition Program (formerly food stamps), public housing, Medicaid, Medicare and ObamaCare.
Building on these noteworthy failures, their 2020 candidates are pushing Medicare for All, the Green New Deal (let deficits blossom!), free tuition, universal basic income and free health care for illegal aliens.
The organizing principle of both socialism and the modern Democratic Party is that people can't be trusted (because they're too stupid and selfish) to run their own lives get an education, find jobs, save, invest, spend, raise their children and plan for their retirement. So the elite must intervene to save them from themselves. (They will, however, allow us the freedom to take drugs, consume pornography, abort our children and marry someone of the same sex.)
We could choke on the failures of socialism. Venezuela is only the latest example of the devastating consequences of a planned economy. Socialists took a country rich in natural resources (one of the major oil exporters), with a skilled workforce, and turned it into a Third-World sewer.
In 2019, the unemployment rate was 44% (at the height of the Great Depression, it was 24.9% in the US), the inflation rate reached 10 million percent (that's not a typo) and three million Venezuelans fled the country (perhaps the greatest peacetime exodus in history). In 2016, the average Venezuelan lost 19 pounds of body weight, due to lack of food. That's what comes from Bernie-ism applied consistently.
Sanders says its "extremely unfair"to compare his vision for America to Venezuela, because Maduro is a "vicious tyrant." What was Fidel Castro? What is his successor Raul? (Bernie praised the Cuban regime in the past.) Were the rulers of Soviet Russia huggy-bears when Sanders and his bride honeymooned there in 1988? The Vermont Senator, who lives on a different planet, once praised Nicaraguan breadlines. ("At least people are getting the food; in other countries only the rich get it.")
Where are the socialist success stories Cuba, Mexico under the PRI, Britain in the 1970s when Labor was in power, North Korea, Eastern Europe, Russia before the fall of communism or China under Mao?
But most of that is communism, not socialism, isn't it? What is communism but socialism with a gun? Once Democrats succeed in socializing everything that moves, do you really think they'll give Republicans a chance to un-socialize it?
Writing on TownHall.com, Venezuelan exile Daniel Di Martino warns Americans: "I saw my home country go from prosperity to starvation in less than two decades. All because the people were tricked into voting for a candidate who sought to punish the rich and give everything away for free." Sanders bashes billionaires every time he opens his mouth even though two of them are running for his party's nomination.
Sanders, Warren and Buttigieg are salivating for a chance to put Americans on the road to Five Year Plans.
Their proposals would cost trillions over time. How will we pay for it, with decreased productivity? Higher taxes will drive capital and jobs overseas. The Green New Deal to fight the mythical threat of man-made climate change will put us at a competitive disadvantage with every major producer on earth. Perhaps Greta Thunberg will become the Secretary of Commerce.
Mexico will have a border crisis of its own, as middle-class Americans seek a better life in Tijuana and Nogales.
But, look at the bright side. While we're jobless, starving and freezing in homes we can't afford to heat, and cars rust in driveways (due to the soaring cost of fuel) we can take comfort in the fact that plastic straws will be banned, there will be a litmus test to assure that judges are pro-abortion, red-flag laws will keep ordinary people from owning guns, they'll be mandatory training to prevent inappropriate touching, and Drag Queen Story Hours will be protected by federal law.
Don Feder is a former Boston Herald writer who is now a political/communications consultant. He also maintains a Facebook page.