Socialism and Stupidity

Bill Neinast

The Friday edition of this paper was  probably unsettling to at least one reader.  There were two letters to the editor that discussed the pie in the sky dreams of Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, the current pin-up star of the Socialist/Democrats.

The disturbed reader is the stranger who approached me in the buffet line at the Black History Breakfast at Blinn College with, “You are so anti socialism that I hope the next time I see your picture in the Banner, it will be in your obituary.”

I shrugged the comment off as someone’s attempt at sick humor.  That shrug, however, was way off the mark.

The same man caught up with me as we were walking toward our cars after the breakfast.  He lit into me then with an accusation of being a hypocrite. 

He labeled me as a socialist because I made the Army my career.  I responded that I was performing an essential service and was being paid for that service.  Nonetheless, he claimed that my living off of government funds made me a socialist.

My response was that if he were so enamored with socialism, he should visit a country where socialism reigns.  His response, “I have.  I’ve visited Canada.”

My next thought after that response was, “Good Grief!, that man is  a voter.”

Unfortunately, this was not the end of this little excursion into ACO’s  gingerbread house on Big Rock Candy Mountain described in one of last week’s letters.  When I mentioned this to a friend who is a devout Democrat, her responses that what AOC, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Beto O’Rourke and others of their ilk are peddling is not socialism was a jaw dropper.

Where in the world are these politicians and voters getting their Kool-aid.  My dictionary defines socialism as “a political and economic theory of social organization which advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.” (emphasis added)

Now look at the Medicare for all proposed by AOC,  Sanders, and others.  This would create a single payer system that would control every MD, nurse, and medical specialist in the country.  They would be told what and where medical procedures could be performed and how much they would be paid for the services.

The pockets for the single payer payments would, of course, be the federal treasury.    And how will money get into those pockets?

The funds will become available through income and death taxes and other methods controlling individuals and businesses. The is a perfect description of the redistribution of the nation’s wealth as described in the definition of socialism.

This move toward a Socialist/Democrat (SD) party was reflected again in an Op-ed piece on the same page as the two letters to the editor.  This editorial was by Dave McNelly, the liberal Texas Observer columnist.

Here, McNelly discusses the efforts of Chris Turner, a Democrat member of the Texas House of Representatives to expand Medicaid in the state.  According to Turner, “Texas needs ‘to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act’ mostly paid for by the federal government.”

That is a typical SD comment that keeps young people lining up and applauding AOC, Sanders, et al.  They are being told it will not cost anything because the federal government will pay for it.  

It is hard to believe that those making such statements do not realize that the government can pick up the bills only by dictating how much of a worker’s salary can be retained by the worker and how much has to be diverted to the government.

And therein lies the fine line between socialism and communism.  Under socialism, the means of production are left in private hands, but the government decides how much of the proceeds you can keep.  Under communism, the government owns all the means of production and decides how much of that production will be given to you.

This dichotomy is represented in the difference between Medicare and Medicaid.  A recipient of Medicare is merely collecting on his insurance.  During his productive years, he paid the premium on that insurance through the Social Security deductions from his paycheck.

Conversely, a recipient of Medicaid is getting a gift from the government.

That is a perfect example of the Marxist mantra of “From each according to his ability.  To each according to his needs.”

So here’s the perspective.

All of this can be summed up in this statement frequently attributed to Winston Churchill, but is one that arose in either France or Scandinavia years before his birth.

“If you are not a liberal at 25, you have no heart. If you are not a conservative at 35. you have no brain.”




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