I found it rather amusing to read David’s prior post on the social foundations of America and our founding fathers. I was not in the least suprised by the confused response to his references to socialism.
As sad as it is, Americans have no clue what Socialism is. They’re taught to hate and fear it because it represents the arch enemy of democracy, communism. Many tyrants in the world’s history have used the term socialism to hide and sweeten the sound of the awful deeds they wrought upon their people as well as the earth as a whole. Even Hitler was selling his hate-filled and corrosive politics as a form of socialism.
No wonder Americans are so afraid of the sound.
But, alas, a couple years in school (well, higher education perhaps) one quickly learns that socialism is either a political theory or an economic theory that is constructed for the benefit of society, for the benefit of the social.
Since this is primarily a political blog though not exclusively, my understanding of David’s reference to the term socialism was that of a political bent. It’s important for everyone to know that there is world of difference between socialism and communism, even though some like to blur the lines. There is also a world of difference between political socialism and economic socialism.
Obviously, political socialism is political decisions made for the benefit of society. Economic socialism is a form of economy that is similar to communism where some or all of the businesses are owned by society. It is obvious that using the term communism for this type of economy is easier to understand by everyone involved than to use the term socialism. This is obviously why the republicans try to use this confusion at every opportunity.
You can go to five different sources and get five different definitions for socialism. Too bad. It’s an easy opportunity for those intent on keeping their uneducated followers motivated. Fear Socialism!