In the late 1940s America came close to falling into the hands of socialists. Since then, the left in this country has been moderate and measured. Until now. Not in the past 70 years has America been this close to a socialist takeover.
The Democrats have begun their weeding-out of presidential candidates. The party is in panic over the popularity of President Trump, seriously fearing that he will actually be re-elected. As they have demonstrated over the past two and a half years, they will stop at nothing to take back the White House; it is clearly not just about putting an end to the pursuit of Jeffrey Epstein's child trafficking network.
For most of them, this is about making one final ideological charge at taking down America.
Yes, that is how serious this is. The left has now run to the end of their rope. They have come to the point where they are gearing up for an all-out assault on the founding, the Constitution, the values and the prosperity that are The United States of America.
Their tool? Distributive justice. Egalitarianism. The Welfare State. Whatever you want to call it - the left is using its ideology to its fullest extent. They are drawing its policy conclusions all the way out, proposing a revolutionary final push to bring America over the line into the shadow realm of socialism.
Last night's squabble between the Democrat candidates put their intentions on full display - and they are all in on the same radical agenda. It doesn't matter that some of them seemed "moderate": that was the role they had been told to play.
One of them is former U.S. Representative John Delaney from Maryland, whose Devil's Advocate role included him saying that the socialism of Senators Sanders and Warren was
bad policies like 'Medicare for All,' free everything, and impossible promises that will turn off independent voters and get Trump re-elected.
This, of course, is not his genuine opinion. It was part of an orchestrated exchange from which Democrat pollsters can glean focus-group reactions and gauge just exactly how far down the socialist road they can take their rhetoric.
The goal, again, is precisely the same for all of them: unmitigated welfare-state socialism. Their means for getting it done make for a frightening list of binge spending and fiscal destruction:
-Single-payer health care (Medicaid for All),
-Socialized college funding, a.k.a., "free college",
-Government-mandated and tax-funded child care for all preschool kids,
-Universal paid leave, and
-Universal basic income.
This blow-out expansion of the welfare state would kill the American economy. The Democrats think they can avoid that by, instead of tax hikes, printing astronomical amounts of money printing. They conveniently ignore the fact that this Mad Monetary Theory idea was most recently tried by Hugo Chavez in his destruction of Venezuela.*
I have recently covered the Democrat agenda in detail; the first part of three is available here with links to the subsequent parts at the end of each article. What still seems to escape a lot of people is the determination of the Democrats to actually pursue this reckless transformation of our country.
And make no mistake: all Democrats are in on it. The only thing they still have not figured out is how fast to get there. That is what Representative Delaney's comment was all about.
Expectably, Sanders and Warren responded in kind:
Mr. Sanders and Ms. Warren responded with defiance, rejecting the moderate candidates as offering policies that were plainly unequal to the political moment. Without taking aim at her more centrist rivals by name, Ms. warren used her opening statement do dismiss their ethos of incremental change. "We're not going to solve the urgent problems that we face with small ideas and spinelessness," Mr. Warren said.
In other words, just as I explained in my three-part series, the Democrats want to get everything on their wishlist; they want it done now; and they don't care about the consequences.
Republicans, conservatives and libertarians need to realize what is at stake here - and the urgency with which they need to fight back. Fortunately, it is not that hard to do so. There are three components to a successful counter-agenda:
1. Expose the Democrats as socialists, including the catastrophic consequences of their "reforms";
2. Present your alternatives to their "reforms"; and
3. Explain how your alternatives make life better for middle-class America.
With all these three items covered, sanity will prevail in 2020.
So far, Republicans are off to a good start. President Trump is unabashedly fighting the ideological battle, and GOP House Conference Chair Liz Cheney is excelling in taking on the Democrats full force. I also hear Senator Rand Paul make good comments that fit into this ideological fight.
We are still waiting for the Republicans to cover the second and third items on my list. Hopefully, they will get there. In the meantime, it is enormously important that everyone within the realm of political common sense understand that
a) The Democrats running for president in 2020 are indeed socialists, and
b) Their socialist agenda is already put on full display in several countries, exhibiting various stages of its descent into poverty and chaos.
The three best examples are Sweden, Greece and Venezuela. The Swedish welfare state represents the "ideal" that the socialist Democrats want, with the world's costliest, most invasive welfare state and a standard of living below the poorest states in America.
Over the past quarter century the Swedes have been desperately trying to save their welfare state from a fiscal collapse. In the 1990s they shifted policy regime, from an egalitarian policy of distributive justice to a neoconservative policy of making the all-out government machine run more efficiently. This shift as deluded some libertarians into believing that Sweden is not at all a socialist country, but an example of a "successful" big government to follow (de facto turning many American libertarians into mouthpieces for Irving Kristol's neoconservatism).
It does not matter how hard anyone tries to deny it: even as they have resorted to neoconservatism, the Swedes still live in a nation as socialist as ever.
Socialism, namely, is not about ownership of economic resources. Socialism is about economic redistribution. The purpose is to eventually eliminate all economic differences in a country.
Since this is the ambition behind a welfare state like the Swedish one, government will not stop trying to expand its entitlement programs even in the headwind of budget deficits and stagnant economic growth. While the neoconservative shift can buy the welfare state some time, eventually unlimited spending will overwhelm the government budget. That leads to severe austerity, implosion of the tax base and unmitigated fiscal panic.
That is when the welfare state enters the next stage: Greece. I am not going to repeat here my detailed analysis of the Greek crisis and its relevance for America; for that, see my two-part piece for Center for Freedom and Prosperity: see Part1 here and Part 2 here. Briefly, though: the Greek collapse wiped out one quarter of the Greek economy. This is equivalent to $5 trillion worth of economic activity in America. Imagine 35 million Americans losing their jobs, basically over night. Imagine taxes going up by eleven percent (for every $100 you pay now you'll be paying $111 instead - including all taxes) while your school is closed down and your kids are crammed into some distant school filled with three times the number of students it is built for.
Imagine your old mom being thrown out of her retirement home when Medicaid cuts benefits by 50 percent. Imagine Social Security checks being reduced to a few hundred dollars per month.
Imagine the food-stamp program you'd rely on when nothing else works, being cut by two thirds. Imagine trying to get into public housing only to be told the benefits are cut by 90 percent.
Imagine the entire protection system you thought you'd paid taxes for, being wiped out. And you are asked to pay eleven percent more in taxes.
In Venezuela they tried to avoid this collapse by having government regulate every aspect of the economy. They took to price regulations to make food cheaper, only to drive food producers out of business because they could not cover their production costs. They drove supermarkets out of business by blaming them for the ensuing food shortage. They price-regulated utilities into massive power outages.
Their promise of "Medicare for All" is now in such bad shape that it almost doesn't matter anymore if a sick person goes to the hospital or stays home. People are fleeing Venezuela in droves, some of them trying to come here.
Where would we go?
Do not sit this election out. Do not let your disgruntlement over the Republican party be the vehicle that carries a mad socialist into the White House. Do not idle because political cronyism, corruption and cynicism have consumed many GOP officials.
If you want to save America, you have to start with saving her from her worst enemies. As bad as many Republicans are, the left that is now trying to revolutionize away our country, is far worse.
We cannot save America by handing her over to those who are actively trying to destroy her.
If you choose to stay on the sidelines, then pay close attention to the blood that will be spilled when the Democrat socialist project starts killing people in rationed Medicaid-for-All health care. Watch as our schools become infested with the same levels of crime they now have in Sweden, where gang members keep guns in lockers, where children get robbed of their phones, their backpacks, their money, their clothes, day in and day out.
Witness how economic despair undoes the fabric of society and we are all plunged into a nightmare of crime and chaos. Look on as cars are burned in the streets and bombings, shootings, rape and robbery replace law and order (just like in Sweden today). See regular families being driven into barbaric methods of survival (as in Venezuela).
All it takes for socialism to destroy America is for you to do nothing.
*) Strictly speaking, it was only the first half of MMT that he put to work, namely about monetizing government deficits. He also did it in part to sterilize the currency exchange rate, and only partly with direct infusions of cash into the economy. However, the macroeconomic effect is the same as with a formal, strict application of MMT, and the policy intent is precisely the same: to allow unrestricted expansion of government without raising taxes. The results are always the same, no matter the name of the theory.