Dear Republicans: Like It or Not, You’re All Big Fans of Socialism

bernie-sanders-2016-formidable-republican-oppI’ve been upfront that I have my doubts about Bernie Sanders’ electability on a national level. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I don’t like the man, I just try to be a realist when it comes to politics. While his age will be a factor with some people (as unfair as that is), it’s the “socialist” label that’s really going to cause a lot of problems come the general election.


I know many Sanders supporters will be quick to point out that he’s a democratic socialist, but that’s not going to matter. If he wins the nomination, the only word that’s going to be constantly repeated over and over next fall by Republicans is “socialist” and they’ll use it in every single attack ad against him.

And according to the most recent Gallup numbers, fear-mongering against his socialist label has a high likelihood of working.

That being said, I find it slightly comical that Republicans (and some conservative Democrats) scoff at the idea of socialism. The truth is, this country has been partially driven by socialism for decades. In fact, most Americans absolutely love socialism.

Yes, Republicans, I’m talking about you as well. You see, all you conservatives reading this – you’re all fans of socialism whether you like it or not.

In fact, let me take a moment to address Republicans who will undoubtedly freak the hell out at the sheer mention of the word “socialism” if Sanders were to become the Democratic nominee.

Oh, I know, you all don’t agree with me that you’re fans of socialism, right? You’re not a socialist – you’re a “freedom-loving capitalist that wouldn’t dare support evil socialism. Praise be to Jesus!”

*By the way, Jesus Christ was probably the ultimate socialist

So answer me this, have you ever:

  • Driven on public roads?
  • Attended public schools?
  • Eaten food that didn’t make you sick thanks to safety standards?
  • Deposited money into a bank because you knew even in the event of a robbery your funds are insured?
  • Visited a public library?
  • Collected Social Security/Medicare/Medicaid?
  • Called 9/11 in the unfortunate need for police, fire or medical assistance?
  • Received mail from the United States Postal Service?
  • Bragged about and saluted our military?
  • Taken out a student loan or grant?
  • Had your garbage collected by city services?
  • Used any form of public transportation?

Because if you’ve utilized anything I just listed (as well as numerous other things in this country), and you’re glad they existed when you needed them – you’re supporting socialism. Everything I just listed above is, in one way or another, paid for and/or subsidized by the government via taxes.


Do you know how our military became the most powerful human-made killing machine in Earth’s 4 billion year history? Because we socialized the hell out of it. 

Yes, any conservative whose livelihood and medical care is largely based on Social Security and Medicare is quite literally living on socialism. In fact, without that socialism many of you might be homeless or dead.

The truth is, this nation is a based upon a form of socialist capitalism. Our nation was stronger economically 50+ years ago when we were more socialist than what we are today. Back when taxes were higher, unions were stronger, education was better and income inequality wasn’t really an issue.

It wasn’t until the bullshit notion of trickle-down economics (which is just an elaborate con predicated on the redistribution of wealth from 98 percent of Americans to the top 2 percent) was thrust upon us that everything started spiraling out of control.

For those Republicans still doubting that you’re all socialists, I have a simple way to prove it: Go find any conservative you know who’s currently receiving Social Security and/or Medicare then mention you’re in favor of eliminating or cutting their benefits – see how that goes for you. I’ll go ahead and guess that their reaction won’t be positive. Though that’s a bit of a trick question, because any true “hater of socialism” wouldn’t accept either government benefit.

So, if Bernie Sanders happens to win the Democratic nomination, and leading up to the general election your party predictably starts the incessant fear-mongering about the “terrifying socialist,” just remember one thing: If you’ve benefitted from anything I listed above in this article, you’re probably a big fan of socialism. 

Even if you refuse to admit it.

Hit me up on Twitter or Facebook and let me know what you think.

Image via Formidable Republican Opposition on Facebook



Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • wendy

    Pathetic how people allow semantics and personality to determine who they vote for.
    And of course a non- christian prob. will never have a chance in hell in spite of the ‘supposed’ separation if church and state

  • Rick Snow

    Let’s be real here, conservatives believe they are entitled to these things, while they want to cut it for all those “leeches” who aren’t deserving. Every conservative I know can totally justify why they should have it and how other people getting it shouldn’t be.

    • LMW51

      That’s right. We want to ban anyone who doesn’t work from using roads, highways, libraries and schools. You found us out.

  • strayaway

    “Socialism” isn’t mentioned in the Constitution. Some of the items listed in this article are delegated to the federal government. If anyone wants to call them socialistic, that’s ok. Other items in the list are allowable at the state level. If anyone wants to call them socialistic, that’s ok too. Is it still socialistic when the federal government privatizes some postal functions as it has or local governments do the same with fire fighting, schools, and garbage collection? After all, vouchers paying for kids to attend parochial schools gets them educated too but is that “socialism”?

    One bit of silliness in the article was the oft repeated question about whether “conservatives’ are being hypocritical by accepting Social Security benefits. Considering that they were forced at gunpoint to pay into that system, the only way they can get any of their money back is to cash Social Security checks. What’s hypocritical about them trying to get the money back they were forced to pay? Collecting Social Security isn’t any more hypocritical than using the roads their taxes also paid for.

    • noah vail

      will they stop collecting when they have reached the point that they have equaled the amount they put in? i don’t think so….money is the republican god

      • strayaway

        Probably not but why should they? If they bought a private insurance policy or annuity, they would lose out if they didn’t collect and come out ahead if they lived a long time or collected whatever else the policy paid out for. That’s contract law. Being forced into a Social Security policy at gunpoint is no different. Social Security taxes (payments) and benefits, if any, are prescribed. Are you suggesting that you (impersonal you) would have someone prosecuted for not paying his Social security tax but would accuse him of being a hypocrite if he accepted Social security benefits? It was, after all, the plan you required him to participate in. Who is the hypocrite?

      • noah vail

        so it’s okay to hate “socialism” as long as you can make a buck from it?…if they hate it so much they should only take what they put in and then go to a private insurer for the rest of their lives….you’re the hypocrite…the republican god is money

      • strayaway

        I wasn’t even criticizing “socialism”. I happen to like my library, public roads, the weather bureau, fire protection, postal service,and a few other things. If someone wants to call those things “socialist”, it’s ok with me. Also, if a better, less expensive way of doing any of those things comes along, I’m ok with that too. However, I’m calling you on your hypocritical attitude of forcing someone, ultimately at gunpoint, to go along with one of your great plans and then have the audacity to suggest they are being hypocritical for not wanting to be forced you forced into something somehow not being entitled to the benefits part of the contract. You sound as crazy as the author of this article. I’m not even Republican.

      • Picachu1

        None of those things were created by socialists.

      • strayaway

        I’m not hung up on the definition of socialism which has to do with the means of production and distribution being done by a community rather than a private entity. If I think that delivering fire or police protection or roads can better be done by the local government than privately, I’m ok with it. The 10th Amendment gives wide authority for such things to be done below the federal level. Perhaps you have a different definition of socialism and as a result respond differently.

      • Picachu1

        Socialism = slave to the state and no freedom;
        Free-market= choice.
        It has nothing to do with money(if republicans love money so much then why is it the democrats that get elected that desire to take more from the private citizens all in an effort to limit and individuals freedom); it has everything to do with freedom, you t[f]ool!

      • noah vail

        i’ve never even heard of any slaves in scandanavia, perhaps the most socialist area of the world…and you only have a choice if you have the money to excercise it…without a level playing field you remove choice from a significant portion of the populace…

      • Chris Maronen

        Or even Sweden there doing great.

      • Chris Maronen

        No capitalism is a slave to the state . The elite only enjoy the United States government .

      • Picachu1

        Guess I’m elite.

      • LMW51

        If they had invested that money and earned interest on it through the 45 – 60 years they worked, how much would they have versus having the government take it from them?

        And let’s turn your argument around. Someone who has never worked a day in their life and receives a welfare check or food stamps – at what point should they begin to refuse the gifts from the taxpayers?

        Social Security and Medicare are not “gifts” – they were earned through forty or more hour work weeks over decades of adult life.

      • Picachu1

        The person you speak of that never worked a day in his life; that’s Bernie sanders.
        He was in college until he was 40, nvr had a job until he was elected as a mayor. So he’s never had an actual job. Why should we keep voting for these welfare recepients(politicians) who’ve never had an actual job?

      • noah vail

        most of these politicians have never worked a day in their life…go directly from law school to politics with no stops in between…talk about your lifetime security blanket…one term in congress and you get a pension for life…are they all socialists? c’mon, sucking off the government tit for life and then trying to shame the working poor…what the hell do you call that?

      • Picachu1

        To answer your question. You could call them hypocritical welfare recepients, or politicians. This frustration that we’re all feeling is what Trump has tapped into. Is he the ideal candidate; nope. However, I’ve seen people call him stupid. He’s not stupid. Many things he does is calculated. The GOP has been going after the over educated vote for years; that’s not been working out to well. Trump is going after the under educated and hopes the over educated can understand the calculation he’s made. I happen to be perfectly educated (although I took many classes in college that had nothing to do with my profession (called general education)). Lawyers actually do a job, but many politicians go directly to the registrars office and get elected (some how).

      • noah vail

        a lot of those elected officials have never had a job outside of government…i believe paul ryan is one of them and McConnel is another…McCain is another…

      • noah vail

        if they had invested that money they would have lost it in 2008….who was in charge then…certainly not a socialist…the capitalists found a new way to steal the money from the people that believed like you do…unfettered capitalism is the worst form of government…only the very rich benefit from it at the expense of everyone else…

      • LMW51

        They would have lost some of it depending upon the risks of their investments. Due to paying attention to the coming issues, I was able to move most of our investments into safe ones and lost a trifling amount during the crash. Being responsible to one’s own self for one’s own gains and losses….gee, what a concept.

        As it is, Seniors haven’t had a cost of living increase in several of the last seven years despite the fact that food prices have risen by 26%! And their medicare benefits have been “cut” by 7 billion $ to fund Obamacare. What the government giveth, the government can take away.

        And there you go being a typical liberal….place motive and intent on someone’s political beliefs when you know NOTHING about that person.

        Conservatives – despite the accusations spewed by hate filled liberals – don’t believe in “unfettered” capitalism or “no regulation”. They believe in common sense regulations and common sense laws. They also understand that pushing banks to loan money for mortgages that wouldn’t and couldn’t be paid back because the person was not credit worthy, didn’t have a regular job etc., would eventually lead to a bubble that would crash the market.

        And there were regulations in place – with a loophole – that was used to help spread the risk caused by a government telling banks to lend money to people who couldn’t/wouldn’t pay back their loans.

        For every action, there is a reaction. Something that you liberals and your elected officials don’t seem to get.

        Oh, and let’s not forget who it was that signed the bill that repealed Glass Stegal and who expanded the CRA to force those banks to lend that money. That would be the FIRST Clinton.

      • Chris Maronen

        distinguishing feature of socialism is public ownership of all resources. Thus, the state would own all sorts of businesses, land, property, and other means of production that now belong to individuals. Everyone would be employed in public enterprises and there would be no incentive for anyone to manage things so they could pocket additional profits. There would be no stock market, private investors, or the distortions that come with them. Instead, the government would decide how society’s resources would be managed in such a way as to benefit everyone. And everybody’s essential needs would be taken care of.

        I see nothing wrong with this picture . Capitalism is the problem.

  • Dennis Killian

    How can the post office be called socialist ? You pay a fee to have something delivered to someplace. Is UPS or FEDEX socialist ?
    The roads are paid for by the people that use them by way of fuel taxes. That is the same as paying a fee. And some roads and bridges have a toll you must pay. How is that socialist ?

    • strayaway

      It depends on how the word “socialist” is defined. If socialism is broadly defined to mean any government operated enterprise, then yes it is.

      • Dennis Killian

        When you are charging people for the service, then it’s not socialist, it’s capitalist.

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        Did it turn a profit? Let me answer that for you….no. It provides a service without concern for profits. It has operated at a loss for eight consecutive years.

      • Dennis Killian

        Are you claiming they never made a profit ?
        Is Tesla a capitalist company or a socialist company ? Have they made a profit in the last 3 years ?
        Many companies can go for years without making a profit !
        When Congress is deciding how they should be run, it doesn’t surprise me they don’t make a profit.

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        8 years through 2014. I do not have data from 2015. If it were true capitalism it would not exist today. Just like the banks that were bailed out. The service they provide is more important than profits.

        https://about.usps.com/news/national-releases/2014/pr14_059.htm

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        the problem with our current version of socialism is that we only socialize failures and not successes.

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        Tesla was a startup…..how old are you?

      • LMW51

        It was a “start up”?

        You are aware that it did not receive anything other than low interest loans from the government aren’t you? It wasn’t part of the Stimulus or Bank bailout. And the loans were repaid in 2013. So, no, not a “socialist” company.

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        Breitbart send out their D team today?

      • LMW51

        The Post Office? Yes, and why is that? Because it is agovernment run organization which must PRE-Fund its retirement program before it pays any other bills; where it must retain employees despite poor job performance and so on.

      • Picachu1

        Doesn’t matter if it turned a profit or not. We pay into many businesses that don’t turn a profit, but that’s their fault(if they are a public institution and lose money then we vote them out, problem is all of the choices are incompetent economists). We pay for a service by paying a tax or a fee. Wel-fare is socialism, but these other things just show how mentally incompetent the democratic mind is. we pay for garbage pick up. I pay the post office to deliver a package and if I wanted to pay a little less then I’d send it by ups instead; so how is that socialism? I pay for services rendered. Medicare is a joke btw. Medicare goes about the country on their surveys looking for every way possible to get out of paying for their bills for services rendered. many physicians and a few hospitals have stopped taking Medicare patients because of their tendency not to pay their bills(this is based on making up retro active rules during their surveys in order not to pay). That’s one example; now imagine a whole government that never paid any bills. Also, you want to know why tuition is so ridiculously high; it’s because of socialism; that’s right student aide is why barely anyone can afford college without student loans. Government interference causes the price of things to go crazy high, and now you idiots would like to let the government control everything? I’d prefer the method of supply and demand and free market to determine the price of things. by giving my money to things I have a say(I say that the service are item is worthy of my money), but democrats would prefer I just give my money and have no say at all (actually not even give my money, but have it taken). What’s the difference between a mugger and a socialist; the mugger doesn’t expect me to thank him after the deed is done!

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        Yeah sure. Why don’t you go ahead and move somewhere where you will get unbridled capitalism. If you hate govt, make sure you go find yourself some nice 3rd world country to move to. Try Somalia.

        You literally know less than nothing, and are being fed some ridiculous libertardian idealist BS lies that have never, and will never work anywhere. Good luck in your delusional existence.

      • LMW51

        Which is purely a political argument and is being used to convince poor souls that socialism is good and capitalism is bad. Look to Venezuela for true socialism.

      • strayaway

        I don’t argue with dictionary definitions as much as you seem to.

      • Steve Thomas

        Comparing apples to oranges….

    • Steve Thomas

      USPS and public highways were socialistic ideas. But later, it was capitalists republicans who started tolls and trying to break the post office so republican concerns can privatize it- hence the unwielding burden a republican Congress put on the Post Office for a retirement bank of money for workers not even born yet, otherwise in would be operating on the plus side of things and postal fees would not have gone up as much…

    • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

      Do you *really* believe it only costs $0.47 to send a letter all the way from Maine to Hawaii?

      • Dennis Killian

        How many letters fit in a truck and plane ?

  • Creeayshun Sighuntist

    It is very apparent that Republicans don’t have a clue what the word “Socialism” actually means. It’s just a term they hear on Limbaugh or Fox “news” used as some bogey man. They really are big fans of socialism but they don’t understand how it works and how they are currently benefitting from it and that ALL 1st world countries operate in similar ways.

    The mental sickness of the GOP and libertards makes them believe they can do it all by themselves, which is absolutely laughable. They just don’t know what they don’t know. Their childishly utopian view of unbridled capitalism is something that has never worked anywhere, ever, and will never work anywhere, ever. They are all just fools who believe Ayn Rand’s ridiculous BS.

    • CanofSand

      We obviously understand it better than you do since you cite roads and infrastructure as “socialist”. Apparently, you think everything you like that tax dollars went into is “socialism”. You are undeniably wrong; that is well outside the definition of the term. Stop being so brain-dead.

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        Forbes disagrees with you:

        “…..Hayek, like most libertarians, is an “infrastructure socialist” when it comes to roads. Socialism means government ownership of the means of production, and governments necessarily own the land on which roads are constructed. Therefore, governments are always going to be involved in the provision of roads; the only question is what role the government should play.”

        http://www.forbes.com/sites/timothylee/2012/05/24/were-all-infrastructure-socialists/

        Go back to your doomsday bunker you douche or get your head out of the right wing echo chamber for a moment or two every day. We are not a totally socialist country so we do not have a “total state or collective ownership of the means of production” but some things are based on principles of socialism. But that might be just too much for your tiny brain to comprehend since you appear to be an either “BLACK or WHITE” kind of libertardian. There is no explaining something like this to you. GTFO.

      • LMW51

        We could say the same to you.

        You are confusing shared risk and responsibility with socialism in an effort to convince people that socialism is “good” and capitalism is “bad”.

        Every subject of discussion is met with “so making a profit is the only thing that matters?”…..

        And when you don’t shut up those who disagree with you, you seek to silence them…..

    • LMW51

      Wow.

      Sounds like you are the proud recipient of dumbed down government education where capitalism is evil and socialism is good.

      Capitalism and the freedom it allows to individuals is directly responsible for most of the worlds progress. Too bad that the education system today – federally run – has decided that you didn’t need to learn that.

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        LMAO…..you are less than clueless. Just stop while you are behind….

  • LMW51

    Whether you like it or not, your argument is flawed.

    Fire departments, highways and other public services are paid for by everyone through taxation and used by everyone. These are not programs that take from some to specifically give to others…..And most of them are LOCALLY CONTROLLED and not FEDERALLY.

    Public education was handled the same way until the mid 1900’s when the Federal Government stuck its nose in and look at how that has worked out. Lower graduation rates etc.

    Social Security is also not a “welfare” program; we pay into it for all of our working lives – we didn’t have a “vote” on whether or not that program was put into place…and as usual when the Federal Government sticks it’s hands into something, it gets in trouble else why does it need reforming? Because it wasn’t the “trust fund” the America people were told it was to be? Because the Feds used the money for other programs and fancy budgeting processes? It’s a ponzi scheme that is now failing because there are more retirees than workers.

    Our nation is built on MARKET economy as is Denmark and other nordic nations…despite what the left spews out. What you want is a socialist planned economy – where grocery shelves are empty when the government runs out of money. Like in Venezuela right now….

    • noah vail

      if the government would pay back into SS what they stole to pay for their wars SS would be in great ship

  • Shane Gashette

    Here we go again… Playing on the lack of education and fundamental understanding of how ANY of these things work… 95% of those items listed are funded through State and Local governments AND AFTER they are voted on through some type of election cycle… Please shut up. This is why half the country thinks it’s a wonderful idea to have “socialism”, when in fact you’ve described the representative republic system perfectly.

  • Votekeeper

    Apparently the author missed Political Science class on the day the professor covered the topic of Socialism. This article sadly confuses the definition, as does Sen. Sanders, in an effort to fuzz some controversial differences and even to mislead readers. Socialism is government ownership of the means of production. This is very different from government regulation, coordination, or other forms of control. Democratic socialism adds some form of democratic decision-making to government ownership. The Social Democrats in Europe are not socialists. There are some socialized functions in the US but these are very limited. For the U.S. government to plan and manage a road system is not the same as producing roads, and most states’ departments of transportation get bids from private companies to build and maintain roads. The Veterans’ Administration does in fact own the means of production for health care for veterans–they own the hospitals and hire the doctors. Social Security is not socialist–there is nothing being produced except electronic payments coming out of a retirement savings system based on Treasury notes. The SSA actually outsources its research and development by contracts.