Sunday, November 24, 2013

Is it "preposterous" to regard Mr. Obama as a socialist?

In my 2008 post I was responding to specific words uttered by Mr. Obama.  I am not claiming that Mr. Obama wants to "nationalize" anything, at this point, except health care.  He is on record for favoring a single-payer system, and that is, effectively socialism, is it not?  Jumping to the present, the Affordable Care Act is a form of economic fascism, as practiced by Mussolini and Hitler.  Private citizens are permitted to own enterprises, but they are effectively controlled by the government.  That is the very definition of fascism, or "crony capitalism."  It's form may be capitalistic, but the government actually controls the property.

The very definition of property rights is not precisely an ownership title to a piece of property; on the contrary, property rights refers to use and control.  If one doesn't have full use and control, then it matters little whether he technically "owns" anything at all.

Consequently, I just don't see how any knowledgeable observer could not, at minimum, consider Mr. Obama a collectivist.  Whether he favors fascism over socialism is a trivial issue.  The point Mr. Obama seeks to establish is government control of citizens.  That he is not succeeding as fast or as thoroughly as he would like does not diminish his general goal. 

There are, naturally, many different ways a committed collectivist can seek to control citizens.  I'd invite you to consider exactly how a committed collectivist would further his political agenda in a country such as the United States of America.  Certainly he might simply seek to extend further the collectivist elements that the public has already accepted, more or less.  The public generally accepts a socialized education sector, for example.  Granted, private education is still tolerated, at the margins, but either by funding schools and universities themselves, or simply by seeking to regulate and control private educational institutions, the government now runs education, for all intents and purposes.

Similarly for the banks, if they are large enough.  Mr. Obama needs money and what better way to  secure funding than by threatening private companies and individuals with further regulation and control?  Mr. Obama, most Democrats, and a great many Republicans are already quite adept representing such strategic incursions into the private sphere of the people as nothing more than wholesome attempts to promote the welfare of the poor, and those incursions have only grown over the decades as the people become worn down by the constant drumbeat for further government intervention. 

Of course, the effort by collectivists has been tremendously aided by the willingness of religion to condemn the right of the individual to live his life for his own sake, and not for the sake of others, as his primary moral imperative.  Thus conservatism fails to offer the people a moral vision to rival that of the Left, since, quite clearly, conservatives share the same moral imperatives:  that the purpose of government is to intervene into the lives of people to make their behavior conform to how the government sees the public interest. 

Conservatives may want lower taxes, and say they want a smaller government, yet they are frequently in favor of passing laws that violate the rights of citizens to control their own lives, such as the concerted attempt to curtail a woman's right to control her own body, or prevent marriage of homosexuals, or favor exemption from taxes of church property, etc.  We all know what Liberals want, so I won't elaborate, but suffice it to say that Liberals generally want to increase taxes, extend regulation, and establish control over individual behavior, whether how much soda you can drink or what health insurance plan you can buy.  Liberals even insist that people should be coerced into buying products they do not want and cannot afford.

Mr. Obama was elected, and re-elected, because people saw that he espoused a clear moral vision, and his opponents, both in 2008 and 2012 offered no alternative.  They were, and are, the modern equivalent of Barry Goldwater's "dime-store Republicans", i.e. Republicans who shared the willingness of FDR's coalition of Democrats who radically expanded government action and control in the so-called "New Deal."  It is usually the case that the candidate who presents the clearest moral vision of what he wants to do wins the electorate.

Tom Anderson

 Electronic Mail Confidentiality Notice:

This electronic mail message and all attachments may contain confidential information belonging to the sender or the intended recipient. This information is intended ONLY for the use of the individual or entity named above. If you are not the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any disclosure, copying, distribution (electronic or otherwise), forwarding or taking any action in reliance on the contents of this information is strictly prohibited. If you have received this electronic transmission in error, please notify the sender by telephone, facsimile, or email to arrange for the return of the electronic mail, attachments, or documents.

This is a private electronic mail message and is thus covered by Title 18, Part 1, Chapter 47, Sec. 1030 USC, Section 107.  Any copyrighted work in this message is distributed under fair use without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for non-profit research and educational or critical purposes only.  Video, picture and/or audio contents of this post originated from the Internet and are assumed to be public domain, unless otherwise posted.