“Them’s fightin’ words,” times.
I’m reticent to even broach this subject for fear of retribution or retaliation. But, fuck it, progressives need better ammunition to fend off the irrational arguments of the Radical Right.
- “You’re all trying to convert this country over to socialism!”
- “Get government out of my business.”
- “Big government is bad business.”
Yeah, I hear your words. Let’s just do a little theoretical experiment and we’ll see where you stand afterward.
#1 You don’t like socialism? Then, you must not like government programs that operate on behalf of society. OK, then, let’s do away with the socialism we currently enjoy. No more:
- Judicial system which provides for rule-of-law adjudication of crimes and grievances. No more suing that corporation for poisoning your toothpaste. No more court system to ensure crimes are tried and resolved.
- No more police departments.
- No more fire departments.
- No more emergency services. Your call to 911 will go no where.
- In fact, no more telecom system as corporations will now own the airwaves and you’ll have to pay that monopoly dues to rent the air waves.
- No more highway system. No more bridges, tunnels, lights, or smooth driving anywhere.
- No more banking system. No more Fed. Your money will now be controlled (inflated away) by independent banking corporations.
- No more financial system. No more FOMC or SEC. The stock market will become a Wild West of robber barons.
- No more FDA or USDA, the quality of your food and drugs will now be controlled by corporations.
- No more EPA, your air, land and water will become as polluted as corporations want it.
- No more OSHA, your jobs will be as risky and egregious as corporations can make them.
- No more Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, you get old or sick, oh well.
- No more national security or military. Foreign governments will attack with impunity, with both organized forces and insurgents.
- This list goes on and on and on… ***
You don’t like socialism? Well, guess what? You already live in a socialist society. AND YOU LOVE IT! And if it were gone — you would suffer.
(You know who also loves socialism, that is, a social system of government of the people, by the people, for the people? … The wealthy and the corporations they run. But do they pay their share for all of these amenities? These privileges? These first-world services and benefits. NO THEY DON’T. You want to point a finger at someone? Point it at the wealthy and their corporations.)
So you say you don’t like socialism, but yet you live in a highly socialistic society as evidenced above. So which is it? Are you a hypocrite or do you just not understand that government IS society.
Next time some Right-wing conservative attacks your progressive, liberal ideals use this argument. We’re not that different. We all enjoy a vast and beneficial social system. Making it work a little better for all of us is what we progressives want.
#2 Without government “in your business”, protecting your business, you wouldn’t BE in business. Without the agencies and laws and equality built into the system (albeit somewhat half-assed right now), your business could and would get commandeered or monopolized out of business.
#3 It’s not that big government is bad, it’s that bad government is bad. Corporate lobbyists that drive legislation — BAD. Lifer politicians that treat their office like a royal award and act more for themselves than the people — BAD. The wealthy who think they can buy elections due to corrupt campaign laws — BAD. Tax laws that ignore the monumental protections and benefits the wealthy enjoy without them owning up to said benefits — BAD.
Government IS us, We the People. If it’s not working for all of us, then yeah, let’s change it. But ignoring the fact that we’re already living in a valuable and advantageous socialism is denying the health and well being you’re enjoying right now.
[*** These are all social programs created by government to benefit society.]