The Democratic Party has too often allowed the Republicans to brand them with slogans that cost elections. The latest George Will column makes clear the tactic in 2018, and certainly in 2020, will be to paint the Democrats as wild socialist radicals who would diminish our economic system through governmental control of the means of production, thereby ending capitalism as we know it. The specter of Russian communism, with its obvious failures, or the Marxist experiment in Venezuela, will be trotted out to show Americans the Democrats have taken leave of their senses.
The problem is labeling what people believe with the term “Democratic Socialist.” It is true there is a group called the Democratic Socialists, but they are not part of the Democratic Party. There are a few of these people who do affirm Communism, but these views are not held by the Democratic Party, even those who call themselves Democratic socialists. A better term for them would be Social Democrats, or “New Deal” Democrats.
If you listen to Bernie Sanders, or any of the left-wing members of the party, they do not want to nationalize our economy, but want an end to the inequality of 1 percent of the population controlling 50 percent of the nation’s wealth, effective health care for all, support for child care and a return to civility in political discourse. The means by which these changes will be done will include higher taxes with “Medicare for all” probably the goal for health care, or at least a revitalized ObamaCare, with lower deductibles.
Bernie Sanders is right – the system is ideally based on fairness before the law but it is clear the system is “rigged” towards those with money, who use their money to significantly influence government action, or often inaction. It is time to readjust our government to the needs of everyday people, not the wealthy and privileged, regardless of what people like Bernie call themselves.