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View Diary: Socialism — what it isn’t (117 comments)

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  •  I share your frustrations (3+ / 0-)

    with Obama on the economic front, but in the last few years I've tried to come around a bit.  These days I think that Obama would have been crucified had he come out swinging with a more Keynesian/progressive economic team.  They would have destroyed him.  My hope is this:  that in retrospect Obama will be seen as a progressive version of Reagan, having opened the door to moving this country to the left.  Compare Reagan and Clinton.  Clinton's deregulations, privitizations, tax cuts, etc., made Reagan look like a far left liberal with his tax hikes and defense of various social programs.

    So what's the deal?  With the exception of a few of us leftists that actually know history, why don't we describe Clinton as an ultra-conservative on economic policy and Reagan a liberal?  Because of their rhetoric, not their policies.  While Reagan's policies don't remotely resemble the fantasy that the conservatives have of him, his rhetoric nonetheless opened the door to later pursuing ultra-conservative economic policy by both democrats and republicans alike (you only truly win an argument when it becomes the unspoken common sense of everyone later on).  

    With any luck this will be the effect of Obama's rhetoric in the years to come.  He's open the door to an alternative through his speech and has challenged the prevailing economic common sense that reigns in Washington.  If we keep this up eventually we'll be able to push far more FDR like policies.

    •  I'm sorry but I'm not as optimistic as you (0+ / 0-)

      Obama has simply opened the door for future Democrats to continue selling out the working classes.

      And I disagree with your analysis of Reagan: he was no liberal, he slashed the taxes on the wealthiest but then when the revenue holes become too much, raised taxes on the working/middle class. Hardly a liberal thing to do. The taxes on the wealthy never went back up above was it 35%? And don't forget Reagan was the one who gave us the "welfare queen", a gift that keeps on giving to this day. Let's not forget the crushing of unions that he supported. What social programs did he defend? He most certainly moved Social Security payments to mask the deficit. He was though somewhat concerned by the high unemployment, and did pursue protectionist policies to try to prevent manufacturing from leaving en masse which is antithetical to his rhetoric which you are right is way overblown.
       I agree that Clinton was basically a conservative.

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