Is the United States Already a Socialist Nation?
Socialism is centralized control of the social structures of society; both economic and public.
Socialism is diametrically opposed to the vision of free trade and personal liberty that the founders of the United States conceived. The more control that is given to a nation's government, the more liberty that is surrendered by its citizens.
If you weren't aware, the US education system is already controlled by the central government. Therefore, the education system is by and large socialist by definition.
US agriculture is largely socialized, especially when it comes to price fixing and industry regulations.
The passage of Obamacare was another step closer to the government takeover of the healthcare industry.
That is just naming a few quick examples.
But is the US a socialist country? Milton and Rose Friedman point out in their book, "Free To Choose" a very disturbing fact that each plank of the Socialist party platform of 1928 has already been enacted into law. Most was enacted in the 1930's.
Here is their list as of 1978.
“SOCIALIST PLATFORM OF 1928 Herewith the economic planks of the Socialist party platform of 1928, along with an indication in parentheses of how these planks have fared. The list that follows includes every economic plank, but not the full language of each.
1. “Nationalization of our natural resources, beginning with the coal mines and water sites, particularly at Boulder Dam and Muscle Shoals.” (Boulder Dam, renamed Hoover Dam, and Muscle Shoals are now both federal government projects.)
2. “A publicly owned giant power system under which the federal government shall cooperate with the states and municipalities in the distribution of electrical energy to the people at cost.” (Tennessee Valley Authority.)
3. “National ownership and democratic management of railroads and other means of transportation and communication.” (Railroad passenger service is completely nationalized through Amtrak. Some freight service is nationalized through Conrail. The FCC controls communications by telephone, telegraph, radio, and television.)
4. “An adequate national program for flood control, flood relief, reforestation, irrigation, and reclamation.” (Government expenditures for these purposes are currently in the many billions of dollars.)
5. “Immediate governmental relief of the unemployed by the extension of all public works and a program of long range planning of public works . . .” (In the 1930s, WPA and PWA were a direct counterpart; now, a wide variety of other programs are.)
6. “All persons thus employed to be engaged at hours and wages fixed by bona-fide labor unions.” (The Davis-Bacon and Walsh-Healey Acts require contractors with government contracts to pay “prevailing wages,” generally interpreted as highest union wages.)
7. “Loans to states and municipalities without interest for the purpose of carrying on public works and the taking of such other measures as will lessen widespread misery.” (Federal grants in aid to states and local municipalities currently total tens of billions of dollars a year.)
8. “A system of unemployment insurance.” (Part of Social Security system.) “The nation-wide extension of public employment agencies in cooperation with city federations of labor.” (U.S. Employment Service and affiliated state employment services administer a network of about 2,500 local employment offices.)
9. “A system of health and accident insurance and of old age pensions as well as unemployment insurance.” (Part of Social Security system.)
10. “Shortening the workday” and “Securing to every worker a rest period of no less than two days in each week.” (Legislated by wages and hours laws that require overtime for more than forty hours of work per week.)
11. “Enacting of an adequate federal anti-child labor amendment.” (Not achieved as amendment, but essence incorporated in various legislative acts.)
12. “Abolition of the brutal exploitation of convicts under the contract system and substitution of a cooperative organization of industries in penitentiaries and workshops for the benefit of convicts and their dependents.” (Partly achieved, partly not.)
13. “Increase of taxation on high income levels, of corporation taxes and inheritance taxes, the proceeds to be used for old age pensions and other forms of social insurance.” (In 1928, highest personal income tax rate, 25 percent; in 1978, 70 percent; in 1928, corporate tax rate, 12 percent; in 1978, 48 percent; in 1928, top federal estate tax rate, 20 percent; in 1978, 70 percent.)
14. “Appropriation by taxation of the annual rental value of all land held for speculation.” (Not achieved in this form, but property taxes have risen drastically.)”
— Free To Choose: A Personal Statement by Milton Friedman, Rose Friedman
That is frightening and it has gotten worse since 1978.
We have failed the founders. The United States is at least 40% socialist, if not more.
If we don't reverse a century of Socialism, we are doomed.