The American Left Wants Full Socialism in 2020

Democratic voters are pushing to the left. According a new poll 70 percent of the Millennials want to vote for a socialist in the next presidential elections. How did Marx manage to penetrate the heart of capitalism?

Socialism will be on the ballot in America’s upcoming election.

To be sure, the Democratic Party won’t agree with that assessment. They will claim that the programs their presidential candidates are pushing- so-called “Medicare for All,” wealth taxes, student loan debt forgiveness, and free college tuition among them- are merely necessary government correctives to growing wealth inequality.

But any fair-minded observer has to notice that the Democratic Party has moved so far to the Left, positions that it would have agreed were “socialism” a mere decade ago have become a part of their political mainstream. A new poll released this week finds that 70% of the coveted demo say they are likely to vote for a Socialist candidate. Millennials are even warming up to Communism. The pace of this change has been dizzying- and tells us a lot about the trajectory of American politics if a Democrat President sits in the Oval Office again soon.

Until recently, Americans were assured that this rush to socialism wasn’t happening. During the two terms of President Barack Obama, the Democrats shouted down any warnings about creeping socialism as demagoguery. Some commentators on the Left even went so far as to suggest that concerns about the socialist direction of America- perhaps most clearly in evidence with the passage of Obamacare- were rooted not in opposition to central planning, but racism against the president himself.

Much has changed since then. Obamacare (officially known as the “Affordable Care Act”) passed, and was quickly deemed insufficiently socialist on the Left. Conservatives across America warned starting in 2010 that Obamacare would become a mere steppingstone to a “single payer” system where the government would take over from the free market in healthcare. History has shown those predictions were absolutely right.

Now, heading into the 2020 U.S. election, the most prominent Democrat presidential candidates all want to increase the scope and depth of government control of the healthcare system- it’s just a question of how much. The most extreme healthcare transformation proposals- ones that Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren favor- would represent a radical government takeover of nearly all payments in the healthcare system. Basic economic inputs like cost and price would be taken out of market hands, and placed into the control of federal bureaucrats. The price tag for this would be astronomical. In the words of author P.J. O’Rourke, “if you think healthcare is expensive now, wait until it’s free.”

It is estimated that “Medicare for All” would cost over $30 trillion dollars for a ten-year period. Such a program would be the single largest increase in American government expenditures since the end of World War II. And the Democrats are advocating for this at a time when the national debt is approaching $23 trillion.

The truth is, the progressive Left in America has been dreaming about a government run healthcare system for over a hundred years. The current movement to a “Medicare for all System” would be a massive leap toward complete healthcare socialism, where the state not only pays the bills of patients, but also is the primary employer for doctors, nurses and other caregivers. The economic realities of paying for a healthcare system meant to provide services to over 320 million Americans would mean that shortages and rationing would inevitably result. And after that occurs, then the Left will push for a system similar to the U.K.’s National Health Service.

Will this result in better care? Lower costs? Bring drug prices down? And ultimately more overall wealth to go around for the people of America?

The history of every government program in America tells us the answer is almost certainly no. But a better system is not really the goal of the Leftists- a more equitable one is. The reason the Left wants a socialist revolution in the healthcare system is because it would further enhance state control of 1/6 of the American economy, and the taxation necessary to support such a system would give the state an enormously powerful tool for the redistribution of wealth.

But healthcare is not the only area where Democrats are increasingly open in their socialist aims. The “Green New Deal” is in many ways an even more ambitious plan to institute a plan of aggressive socialism in America. The environmentalist Left has rallied around the claim that we have about a decade Left to radically reduce the amount of C02 emitted into the atmosphere. This would require a massive shift in resources- both in the public and private sector- and put government in a position to regulate nearly every aspect of Americans daily lives. The Green New Deal provides the basic blueprint for this effort.

This is by no means a fringe policy proposal. Despite an initially rocky rollout at the hands of novice Congresswoman (and far Left zealot) Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez that included references to “cow farts” and rebuilding every structure in America, the general concept of the GND has caught on. Democrat presidential candidates including Senators Booker, Harris, Warren, and Klobuchar are all completely onboard with the proposal, and even the leading candidate of the establishment, Senator Joe Biden, says he is supportive of the overall effort.

Even Democrats admit the details of the Green New Deal are fuzzy. It remains more an aspirational document than a how-to guide for tackling climate change. In many ways, it is more of a mobilization meme than specific policy document. But just like the Democrat plans to overall the healthcare system, one thing about the Green New Deal is absolutely certain: it would be astonishingly expensive.

How much are the Democrats talking about spending on a climate change problem that only about 40% of Americans think is a true crisis? Trillions. At the top of the list of big spenders is Senator Bernie Sanders, who believes that around $16 trillion is required to tackle the clime change emergency. Sanders also wants to put hundreds of billions of U.S. dollars into U.N. efforts to manage the climate change crisis.

Put aside for a moment the debate over whether climate change is truly a crisis that requires trillions of dollars of spending in order to prevent the eradication of the human race (full disclosure: I reject this view). What is absolutely certain is that a program of government enlargement and mobilization under the rubric of the Green New Deal would expand the reach of government into every sector of the economy, to include endless regulation of businesses and even household activities. Consumer products- from light bulbs to flush toilets- would not be beyond the government grasp. This kind of hyper-regulation is a form of central planning, which is at the heart of the American socialist project.

 

Green New Deal environmentalism is also an excuse for more redistribution of wealth at home and abroad. In recent years, Democrats have explicitly tied climate change policy to “economic and racial justice.” This language makes clear that an increasingly large part of the climate change movement has nothing to do with science.

 

The Left is already using their plan to prevent catastrophic warming of the planet- warming that would allegedly eradicate the human species if unchecked- as an excuse for other aspects of their domestic socialist agenda. Senator Kamala Harris’s “Climate Equity Act” is just one such example. It would establish an “Independent Office of Climate and Environmental Justice Accountability” to make sure that the impact of climate change on specifically low-income communities would be a government priority. In reality, this would be yet another government agency finding ways to take from those who earn more to give to those who earn less. Socialism lurks around every corner, even when the planet is at stake.

Why is this lunge toward socialism happening in America now? The 2020 election is certainly looming large in this fight between free markets and statist central planning, but there are also demographic trends that are changing the American electorate.

 

The Millennial generation is now the largest single voting bloc in the United States, and the younger generation below them (Generation Z) is also much more comfortable voting for a socialist, according to polling. Both Millennial and Gen Z voters attitudes toward socialism are significantly more favorable than their parents or grand-parents generations were at the same age. In some polls, about 50% of Millennial and Gen Z voters express a preference for living in a socialist country. This is higher than at any point in decades of American polls on the subject.

 

It’s worth asking, why would this leap toward socialism happen among American youth? We live in an era when there is more access to data and historical information than at any point in human history. It might seem counterintuitive that the generation empowered with the touch of a few buttons on a phone or laptop to summon nearly endless information about the failures of central planning would become so favorable to trying it one more time.

 

Part of this can be attributed to a lack of life experience and wisdom, although that would not explain the rise in pro-socialist sentiment as compared to earlier generations. A better explanation would be the absolute dominance of left-wing narratives in the American media and academic world. Both have become political monopolies of the Left overrun with proponents of socialism.

 

There is also a sense among many in the Millennial and Generation Z cohorts that the deck is stacked against them in the long run. Their supposedly wise elders of the Boomer generation have saddled them with an unthinkable $23 trillion in debt. Once interest rates normalize, an enormous portion of tax revenue will have to go to paying off debts run up decades before. The younger generations in America will then turn to government and demand cancellation of debts and more public benefits. Thus the cycle of spending only gets worse.

There is also a sense among many in the Millennial and Generation Z cohorts that the deck is stacked against them in the long run. Their supposedly wise elders of the Boomer generation have saddled them with an unthinkable $23 trillion in debt. Once interest rates normalize, an enormous portion of tax revenue will have to go to paying off debts run up decades before. The younger generations in America will then turn to government and demand cancellation of debts and more public benefits. Thus the cycle of spending only gets worse.

The 2016 election was groundbreaking in that the Democratic Party had a serious candidate running in the primary- Bernie Sanders- as an open socialist. While he did not win that race, Senator Sanders is currently a top tier contender in a crowded field of candidates vying to beat Donald Trump in 2020. But a survey of all Democratic Party candidates’ positions shows that since the first open socialist ran on the Democrat ticket, the overall ideology of that party has only gone further to the Left. Ideas that were once decried as socialist by detractors on both sides of the aisle have become central ideas in the political opposition to President Trump and the Republican Party.

The slide to socialism in America is not complete, but it is certainly underway. While many will focus on the upcoming presidential and congressional elections as a referendum on the persona of Donald Trump, on a policy level it will be much more closely aligned with either an acceptance- or rejection- of the world’s most powerful country becoming a true Democratic socialist state. The stakes are high for all sides.

Buck Sexton is currently writing a book on socialism in the US. He is host of the nationally syndicated "The Buck Sexton Show” on radio and podcast. His program is heard on over 120 stations across the US, and Buck has been a frequent guest host for Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity. Formerly, Buck was a CIA analyst in the Counterterrorism Center and the Office of Iraq Analysis, and served tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. He also worked in the NYPD Intelligence Division on counterterrorism cases.

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