It is becoming increasingly obvious that the United States is destined to join the socialist governments of Western Europe in their downward spiral into economic and social chaos. Too many of the American people have bought into the panic peddling and hype put forth by the Democratic Party over the past two decades to objectively consider the consequences of the agenda being proposed by the Obama administration.
The campaign slogan of Bill Clinton’s campaign for President in 1992 was, “the worst economy since the Great Depression”. A mild downturn in the business cycle at the end of Bush 41’s first term gave the Democrats an opening for their campaign trademark, “panic peddling” and it worked. Unable to use the same tactic effectively in the 2000 elections because a Democrat was in the White House, they lost to George W. Bush. However they brought it back with a vengeance in 2008 and it worked for them again.
Now the same slogan is being used to panic the American people into accepting a plunge into outright European style socialism. Capitalism is not a perfect system because there is no perfect system as long as it is run by humans. It is subject to cycles because productivity during good times always outpaces demand and has to slow down and allow demand to catch up. Businesses become overstaffed and overbuilt when business is booming. The marketplace becomes saturated with goods and services and still businesses keep expanding and building. Eventually the economy has to go through a period of adjustment.
When Drug Stores, Supermarkets and shopping malls multiply like rabbits in communities with a static or falling population we should not be surprised that some fail. When every driver in the family owns their own automobile and the lifetime of those autos is double what it was just a generation ago is it any wonder that the new car market experiences a business slump from time to time. When condos and houses are built at a faster rate than new families are created to live in them, is it any wonder that housing inventories sit stagnant.
Add to the normal ups and downs of capitalism, the intrusiveness of government that destabilizes markets and prices as it has been doing for years in the healthcare, housing, financial and energy markets, and is now doing in the automobile market, and the result can only be an economic catastrophe. As Americans desperately look to government to make their world right again, they are completely misreading the intentions of the new administration.
President Obama and most of the people he surrounds himself with are ideologues. Unlike the Republican opposition, Obama bases his governing decisions on principle. Unfortunately for America, the principle is socialism. His economic policies are not intended to further the cause of capitalism and liberty, but socialism and government control. These ideals carry over into other areas as well. When asked if he feared that terrorists released from Guantanamo would return to the jihadist battlefield, he admitted that was possible, but insisted it is still the “right” thing to do “because it is in keeping with our values.”
He has made the same observation about “taxing the rich” stifling job creation. The objective of socialism is not economic prosperity but “fairness” and control. The socialist’s obsession with control is not necessarily due to evil intent, but because of an elitist attitude of superiority that causes the socialist to believe they know what is best for everyone and if only everyone would submit to their standards we would have an ideal society. Individual liberty is a foreign concept to the socialist. To them the ideal condition is not liberty but submission. Individual aspirations and liberty should be a willing sacrifice everyone ought to eagerly make “for the good of all.”
It is important to understand that in order for socialism to succeed, capitalism must fail. The two are incompatible. Although the funding for socialist programs must come from capitalist activities, it still considers capitalism exploitative and “unfair”. In the Socialist world capitalist activity must be controlled by the state to insure its profits are fairly distributed throughout society.
To accomplish this early socialists and progressives supported the sixteenth amendment ratified in 1913 to allow a graduated tax on income. Since then the government has used the tax code as a tool for economic manipulation and social engineering. Between tax exploitation and draconian regulations a socialist state controls both the economy and the behavior of citizens.
Every aspect of socialism is antithetical to the principles on which America was founded and on which it has prospered for over two hundred years. The ability of each of us to pursue our own path to prosperity and have the fruits of our labor—property—protected by government was the fundamental purpose for the formation of the American government. The reason the Republican Party has been ineffective in opposing the spread of socialism is because it has abandoned this “first principle” in order to acquire and hold power.
The reason why it has not worked for them is because in politics, a cause based on principle always triumphs over one based on expediency. This is particularly evident in the current debate about what constitutes a proper spending package to stimulate the economy. The Republicans want less spending and more business “incentives” through tax cuts, while the Democrats want spending to further their socialist agenda.
The Republican counter-proposal to the Democratic spending package, paying consumers to buy houses and automobiles as a means of creating jobs in construction and manufacturing, is just as misguided as the Democrats’. The proper function of business is not to create jobs but to perpetuate itself and generate profits for stockholders. Jobs are the natural byproduct of its success. By the same token, it is not the function of government to create jobs, but to maintain a business atmosphere that allows businesses to survive and prosper. Again, jobs are the natural byproduct of that prosperity.
Unless Republicans return to this basic American principle we will be the first generation in history to pass on a lower standard of living to the generation that follows.