Chris Matthews asked, “What is the difference between and Democrat and a Socialist?” I’m sure he believed this was a softball question to Debbie Wasserman Schultz, The Democratic National Committee Chairperson. Matthews wanted his fans to understand the Democrats, with all their ideas of redistribution of wealth, are not Socialists.
The reason the DNC Chairperson didn’t answer the question is not because she did not know the answer. It was because the answer would turn moderate and classic Democrats away from the party.
“The American People will take Socialism, but they won’t take the label…. There is no use attacking it by a front attack, it is much better to out-flank them.” (Sinclair, Upton. Letter to Norman Thomas. 1951. MS.)
Today’s Democratic Party is not the party of JFK. It is been taken over by those who call themselves Progressives. However, a Socialist by any other name is still a Socialist. The difference between Bernie Sanders and other Democrats is that Sanders is honest and upfront about his intentions. This is a no-no in the Democratic Playbook.
Here are some common ideas promoted by today’s Democratic Party:
- Enjoyment by citizens of their rights and freedoms must not be to the detriment of the interests of society or the state, or infringe the rights of other citizens.
- Citizens should have the right to work (that is, to guaranteed employment and pay in accordance with the quantity and quality of their work, and not below the state-established minimum).
- Citizens should have the right to health protection, ensured by free, qualified medical care provided by the state.
- Citizens should have the right to maintenance in old age, in sickness, and in the event of complete or partial disability or loss of the breadwinner, guaranteed by social insurance for temporary disability; by the provision by the state or collective retirement pensions, disability pensions, and pensions for loss of the breadwinner
- Citizens should have a right to housing, ensured by fair distribution, under public control, of the housing and by low rents and low charges for utility services.
- Citizens should have the right to education, ensured by free provision of all forms of education, by the institution of universal, compulsory secondary education, and broad development of vocational, specialized secondary, and higher education, in which instruction is oriented toward practical activity and production.
- Citizens should be guaranteed freedom of scientific, technical, and artistic work by the state providing the necessary material conditions for this.
The examples I noted above, which you can easily get Progressives to agree are goals (even if some long-range) are all taken from the Constitution of the old United Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). So, is there a difference between a Democrat and a Socialist?
The Democratic Party promotes the state above the individual, and the limiting of inherent rights for a greater good and creating social equality. They believe in limiting individual liberty and personal freedom to allow for government manufactured rights (like healthcare) that they believe will make people more socially equal.
This is the whole basis of the “redistribution of wealth” idea. The Democratic Party works diligently to limit personal freedom and opportunity, believing government control can create social prosperity and eliminate individual risk.