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Socialized Capitalism

If you’re like me you tend to think of these as black or white; either one or the other. In reality, a pure form doesn’t exist. Governments are actually hybrids of both, usually having more of one than the other.  

Socialism is defined under various theories as governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods, government here meaning mass ownership by society. Another version: socialism is a transitional state between capitalism-communism. It follows the more socialism in the mix, the closer one gets to communism. Socialist states would include Russia, China, Cuba, Venezuela, Viet Nam, North Korea and so on. Others self-identifying as such are Ireland, Belgium, Netherlands, the Scandinavian nations, Greece and so on.

Those identifying as capitalist nations include Brittain, France, Germany, Japan, Chile, Australia, New Zealand etc. but on close inspection these folks spend as much or more on government programs as socialists, so other factors besides public sector spending apply: regulatory environment, number welfare recipients as a percent, level of taxation, national debt to GDP%, wealth demographics across society, consumer sentiments, etc.

The past few years some democrats have come out as socialists like Bernie Sanders. Just last month a 28Yr old NY woman unseated a long-time republican congressman, boasting her social agenda. It’s estimated if all democrat programs become reality it will cost about $10Tn over the next 10yrs, or more than half our annual GDP. Where will it come from? More taxes and debt accumulation? Taxes impact middle/upper class most, reducing their spending, squeezing GDP. Debt then grows as a percent. One must ask, how long can this go on?

In many of the socialist countries government spending is more than 50% their entire GDP. America hit a high of 43% in the 2nd half of the 20th century, averaging 35–40% the past decade. What happens if democrats elect more socialists? Or moderate dems move left? Or leftist dems more steadfast? Recent years democrats have grown faster than republicans. Last election  Clinton won more votes. Is it crazy to think if we’re not careful America will soon have to admit its become more socialist?

Since our founding we’ve been a capitalist society leaning right in our politics. This combined with our constitution, form of government, Judeo-Christian orientation, law & order posture and free-enterprise propensity led us to become one of the most successful societies in history. In fact, we rose to preeminence across most economic indicators and stayed there for generations. Peoples flocked to our shores in greater numbers than anywhere else, and still do. Why? Because we offer more hope, opportunity and fairness than other places.

Americanism has been synonymous with capitalism and constitutionalism for almost 250yrs. But gradually under the steward-ships of Roosevelt, Johnson, the Clintons & Obama we’ve moved left. We’ve instituted entitlements and an array of progresssive benefits that eat a bigger & bigger share of our resources. If democrats are able to push their leftist agenda as mentioned above, we will soon pass the tipping point of 50% GDP which is a primary indicator of socialism.

Do we really want this? Can we somehow still be America if we welcome socialism? Can we maintain our place in the world if we give up our paradigmatic republic to become just another leftist oligarchy? We know the answer. We’d do well to pause, evaluate and change course back to our true heading, which is toward freedom, opportunity and hope for the future.


You’ve been reading Shaneview
I’m Al Shane

Alvan I. Shane Author, The Day Liberty Wept 2270 N Euclid Ave Frequent Op-Ed Contributor Upland, Calif 91784 Political Donor to Cons Grps / Causes (909) 946-5104 Ex-Marine / California native Tax Accountant / Mar 43yrs / 1 son

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