John Nichols - Speech on the history of American Socialism

I mentioned in my remarks earlier how impressed I was with his talk is National Convention and with his book the Esper I think you're going to be delighted to hear what he has to say tonight so brothers and sisters John Nichols correspondent for the nation brothers and sisters let me Jay how thrilled I am to be in this wall on this night I've been here before back in nineteen ninety when I toured the united states with nelson mandela after he was freed thousand and outlast to address the united states congress he was invited to wall street nelson and yellows invited the Baldrige go to stockton he was invited to all right occasions in the United States but Nelson and not insisted he existed that he come to dearborn michigan and eat the members of United Auto Workers Local 600 because Oh international Saturday scale those who are blessed and never forget again this is a great yo behind so very drop to the year I am also profoundly honored how are your date buddies with Michelle Fecteau yeah and your dear singer that just got on Tuesday Lord education this is exactly what's going on after graduation 11 the be also foster moment and say that that it is there's something wrong in the order of the university there's something providing a Miss in the environment of the stars that Jonathan was with Danny and podium when the greatest member of the united states congress in my lifetime we sitting at table back how I to understand that I have a politics for a living I cover colleges for living and in the year two thousand eight the primary campaigns with you and I know everybody loves here for Clinton them thank you ah but she put more popular dish with 2015 2015 Hillary Clinton was on the ballot in the cannons by heart mountain and that Michigan fight almost going to what to do with as the young senator Eleanor acabamos rising politically there was this great areas great problem out in the middle of the country Michigan because he wasn't out of Valley and you forget our host that struggles with a nomination in 2008 John Conyers John hires organized a campaign for an alternative vote in writer and God Johnson for Adams the Roman thirty percent off for a nun two minutes later that he committed to Barack Obama when he got into the rules fight or the end of the game it was that thing that reality that made it possible for the amount of people to assure that he was able to secure the nomination Lake serjella do not miss the reality that John hires playing a critical role in enlarging Barack Obama as President of the United States I believe that there's why 1964 look out of the arc of history that the Reverend dr. Martin Luther King jr. name is first and only endorsement ever of candidate for public office within that Democratic primary in 1964 dr. King endorse tom connors let's go there is no one more historic voyage the time is growing and let me also sale of property here as be honored la Steve Mason and are through digital for their incredible work and you know it's always the case that you have to listen to a keynote speaker before you can get to a really good heart and I am so honored to be here tonight honor these folks as well Steve Assam and Arthur Mitchell they're incredible Thanks Giving around lovely I don't know what you were doing this but I was covered in the election for President of the United States of America and easier to do it it seems like a thousand years ago but a week ago today Saturday there are some people that kid nick brock obama was a sure bet every elected there are people who are scared there were people who answer here is stigma how this was going to be a close election and and yeah you're low-balling is rap and you might think rather than some people fall deeper into the trap that happens hybrid car time now this is the turret on tuesday i was going to the other teachers all we're broadcasting SMBC I actually suggested a crazy concept for MSNBC I said it's got a goggle political party hall it's getting all the girls up on the top why don't you take a camera and go and block you from a union hall with people were actually relaxing the president or entity is very excite but i understand i do just watch the constant good workout whoa he you know just is proud laughing the right let's be clear from on the left and the right sometimes we can talk ourselves into this we believe this because everybody we know saying why do everybody in this potato say socially winter ahead of this front table and you see when you talk in your job too much you can't convince those and everybody else please decision well that's very powerful he's sitting there on Tuesday night they declare Ohio for Barack Obama and Hamas a blessed one tonight that cannot be the case until I cannot vote for Barack Hussein life and he dedicated sir because it's nice to know it is never changing rapidly of all the world some dick stays in Cabo cause something was wrong so he sent a woman to go and check on big intelligence but she hadn't said down a hallway go check whether that was the wrong and here's Harrisson think God hears me everything haha how will be such a fool how'd he make such a fool of himself well actually who's experienced the practice because in the year 2000 Tao said that the results that showed Al Gore 14 and the presidency were wrong and he got Supreme Court to go allow him and steal presidency from here and evil and he only knew I was in two thousand we learned why wasn't it was a good one if you want ha you can't win small you gotta win big enough so you can steal it from you flower beds on your great day on Tuesday night Wednesday morning I heard always property haley barbour from Mississippi I like the inner place where there's the mobile today mr. today I would / Mississippi the former Chairman's Republican National Committee coats on national television Wednesday morning after spring clear Obama even at me cowboy gear to a reception in I like it was three close to a time so young everybody listen let's not give it we that's it yeah if it's either it is pretty close to time almost all the pies must present a snack box as her like yellow every year at Churchill Downs the Kentucky Derby is pretty close to the time but somebody wins the Kentucky Derby and actually I got used at night but you know huh because it takes a long time to count on and 20 million votes that happens good as people day I'm when a driver to say is pretty close to type Barack Obama I had a 250,000 popular vote margin he was here 303 electoral votes well as the disease in brothers and sisters Barack Obama has a 3.3 million home Martinez the couch he one of the Troy of American States he won every major scales country except Texas brock obama as a mandate to leave this country and mothers and sisters head it's our job to make sure didn't even as a progressive know Oh Oh now circle that's how you go you know just win election on much today and then go home to never pay attention that's not democracy that's a spectator sport in democracy you win an election and then you go and make sure that they learn on what they promised i was with Barack Obama and was resting on Monday morning I'm not a boring but it seems like only for Asia and I am Here I am Here a oh yeah I am here oh we gotta work with John Boehner I'm hear that oh yeah we gotta make nice with mitch mcconnell's that I want his only goal was to make the first term failure know what I heard what I heard on Monday morning barack obama was an outline for a just and fair America an America that austerity at it but it goes down the economic justice Allen and that's the critical but you're going to have the next few days it survived you always have we elect somebody we elect an interesting such cruel it's the day before the auction and I believe very good people a boy after that I should leave after Washington the place where good ideas go down and it gets surrounded by all these music oh I know what you told the people in Michigan I know what you took all the people in Ohio I know that you told the people in Wisconsin I got a more for you to do that though bro oh my god the money already well of course there's one for more and if you want a tax cuts for the richest people in the world there's more than that I do that because you know you can never be too rich and if if you need to get a tax break to a corporation shut up a tree in the United States and moved overseas there's always money but there's never quite amount of money to keep the promises to be happy to keep the promises bellacor I have a Google Doc Brown long-lost keeps roses I really do but I also happen to believe that he will be surrounded by a lot of folks who tell you can't afford to sit and that is why a group like DSA is so important and that's why I'm so excited to be with you folks tonight I want to talk to you for a few minutes about history because history matters in understanding the present and it matters to understand that the idea is that our dear friend here upon it is units ago are not rather than what is I now have another he's rather uncomfortable sitting next to but but the back there is these ideas your element of general education for all adjustment here society these are not for ideas these are American ideas these are abused rooted in our history and these are ideas and advanced throughout the last two hundred and three years of american history x identified and active socialists because socialism is a power of American history it is not important for myself is something oh I wouldn't book called the afternoon and people's anyone you know why do you want to be talking about social why do I mention the s-curve just yesterday what scaring people all like effort say okay you know like yes bring everything to inspire your record was but your friend serve Dale I bet you Alaska I have been to muscle which has a client coffee shop and Sarafina out of the department inspiration humor was an interview in 2009 where Sarah Palin was appearing on Sean Hannity's TV show now i'm sure most of you swat so i'll be all the beaches but to hear those macho nannies to each other talk about and there 31 obama is so not for protons excited I'm talking about me tight this is aspect of the man but I'm willing to take it and to the time to get establish that brought it all up its oceans and they're going on the hospice depositing oh yeah I'm real crisis and shawnee any closer well what to the bother you thought Obama is particularly how is he taking we're up here well they're going to require mandatory weatherization that's right they're going to weatherize our videos you know so then they're going to try to make sure that the whole doesn't get into our houses and they're going to require my certain size windows that actually bit where suppose to me so the pole doesn't come in hey I mentioned here piloted earth and head handed goes to Sarah Palin make the short run rosacea what do you think about that what is that and Sarah camels are now picking us up she goes there should be two generic market socialism that's right a well-fitted window you're two steps away your stop it ray is right there and after that actually I thought I'm going to go I'm going to go and listen to all these tapes of Hannity and all these tapes and glenn beck i do it through your have to talk about socialism hey you know what they talking about suppose all the time and it turns out just about everybody from moderate Republican time or socialist so it's very your work is done in fact I asked a friend of mine used mobile data socialist Milwaukee socialist you get after the party chair for the better part of 70 years and as Headroom well would you think about all this time of a namibian socialist and she said boy I spent a lot of time advocating for social honestly I kind of thought when we got charger to be there but this became looking car dirty and spin right foot and innovative it no no the answer is to say okay let's go let's go der because to the right in America when they have none to argue against an idea with everybody gotta know national art you're saying everybody show you have health care and they're like okay all right that would be socialism and Eddie in Democrats by on Wednesday ethical it's not that you know you call something social security and he's just right Derek so terrified of the term socialist then it becomes the history drama line it throw everything out an idea where is your social strata so that was what would you say it back sometimes I've used response where the seven and healthcare for all on universal single-payer health care plan with the government may be sure that everybody's covered equal access for all control costs but a controlled by where today II a social democratic idea is it i did that social democracies Ronald Reuel a plan and one other reasons why people they socialized wrong room now have water life and American as we didn't implement there might be useful and your acne so supposed to leave this you don't have to be socialism the party of in the monk is that there are some really good libertarian ideas I don't put a public education get rid of our education out of this but there are some really good there's varying ideas I think the drug war is available I think that it's absolutely legitimate to say that we ought to find another brain to do these issues we are decriminalized for us we ought to take it out of the shadows and images and much of a communitarian idea I am comfortable saying that the bigger Terriers have brought to the great American discourse a good idea but I will also say in the idea that you're a Thomas and Eugene Victor des advocated for which is a national pension for the elderly so that no one goes without food and shelter in the last year their life something they called social security might actually have housed in this socialist lovin and Oh make that circle in America we start to become a functional country because we say we will take a good idea where it comes from and we won't let me tell us we won't let you tell us to throw okay just because you called a socialist that's where we get to shift the debate in this country I can tell you this i can tell you this why is Bernie Sanders so successful wild dirty Sanders watching the first senator declared elected on Tuesday night what he win with 71 percent of the boat what you carry in every county in vermont including the most Republican parity why I drove by a single television and why did it the more gutter run get to scare me right hence the evil otago was saying you fall I in a row why is hurt is he is so successful because the first hand starts by saying he's the social and they got nothing sounds good at the TSA dinner in dearborn edible 600 all on Saturday night you can't take that out to America because America America's Apple taster he's not you see we were founded we were founded at in 1776 by three market capitalists readers have no freedom okay studied all the economic systems in the world in society that we want to create a free market capitalist republic here in the United States and we want to have none of those European ideas like socialism because that's a whore idea that an American have a good at it that's how to make sure as country central London the guy who fall the United States you to be Tom Paine with his fabulous book common sense scribbler Gavin at the American crisis you know Tom Hagen stop writing in 1776 every called evolution it's not writing 1777 they read carefully ed Alec which she kept for you for decades after that the last pamphlet that Thomas Paine book was titled agrarian justice and the argument that Thomas be made the last day of his life the gray Panther American Revolution good boys American Revolution American patriot Tom's name the last answer they look call for the seizing of lacking courage and a redistribution of that land to the poor any copper taxing the rich and create a system of guaranteed pensions for the elderly guarantee health care for those who are sick and taking mind or welding and giving a stick to every American in turn 21 on the argument that if you didn't do that if you didn't take money from the rich and make sure to the poor and they're trying to start their working life with then you were create an unusual beautiful system where the rich would always be rich and the poor before and type of danger we did but American implement a European colonial fuel system we've got to be given in there we not to be just any everyone well okay so there's one outliner it is here's the thing re mentioning that book I talk a little bit about the Republican Party and we have a lot you guys with Michigan folks and I i am interested seriously pack a difference of opinion i wasn't public park is not a mission or in Wisconsin I'm whose conscience bothers Kevin you people Frank Jackson Michigan as okay but you have universities and that eating and ripon wisconsin fish fight if you go to is wonderfully if you go to republican i never gonna change it someone I even mention your father if you go through Hagen Senate caucus dairy history through probably harder to the republican party was founded in 1854 in ripon wisconsin and maybe call my house hoping be ova line and you're like how I without okay was well he was the leader before he moved to ripon wisconsin he was the leader of the boat yourself of our movement and this was a national movement they're called were working class people to organize and we hope for the redistribution of land and well album obey had come on the workingmen's party of New York City in the 19th or 1820s and 1830s and then had been closely associated divorce really in over 20 years of advancing socialist ideas in the united states america the batter's of the Republican Party were socialists they wanted to any original sin of the American experiment slavery and so some people didn't get along and ask you know that that's enough for me I I will be living even Ethan nap Ethan when they would nominate a myth running for president as states and hope I'm revised business is possible can table because the party package is later that's a good economical I like that I like that Rihanna and I left something else you know the young man named president maintains his team came out of Oakland he served in the US congressman horse-breeding Horace Greeley edited in New York Tribune so the newspaper distributors like to make sure magazine in its babies distributed across the United States everybody subscribe to it aight wicked when he was postmaster he didn't have enough money to subscribe young man when the paper came as you would read it before he delivered your postal workers doing it and sir and brown Muslims regret nation is fantastic but eight-legged used to read horse previous to your church engineer something about host music in 1848 and great revolution to Europe Horace Greeley said Charles pinion his German over to Europe to color revolutions and presented an ally to hire somebody they are European correspondent hire some German writer who's really cat who really knows what's going on Charles David came at became the editor the trigger and the guy he hired began writing in 18-49 was the gentleman named Karl Marx and Marx was the European correspondent for the New York Tribune the main newspaper favoritefavorite Republicans from 1849 into the 1860s abrahamian could read the New York Times or The nurtured in every week it caters greedy ass condition he would recommend write letters to the editor of a bit more common in articles so i reckon i said okay let's see i mean is it possible lincoln red marks well when they hand out here I revolution marks for a longer until the big long article them and then I went back to the Lincoln papers and about three weeks after the market article appeared on the American Revolution there wasn't even called is pretty low I know some of you of Central America saw Terry activists big hat I look at thank you for your work but they passed to the decadent eighteen fifties Central Americans holler you have to be a Hungarian solidarity activists air support of the revolution there's a Hungarian salieron movement meeting called in springfield illinois three weeks Anna marks 100 by water and a ball hold it that's a that's I did that in my district class but here's Bert is really invested when Abraham Lincoln became president Astrid he gave a wonderful inaudible guess we all remembered spoke about the better angels and we survived forget that captured in speeches his first State of Union address given evolved 1861 he can talk about the war that any gun about the bullets of replying islands along and he told the members of Congress look around many receipts her enemies remembers what Congress was left to join you to Pettersen in insurers picked three new Supreme Court justices because three are sitting justices have left to join a position if you listen closely you can hear the cannons in the distance we are at war moment but then link it said however I would be remiss in this address if I did not Klaus and address the subject of great importance the war is vital to very important or something else we must remember we must always remembers we did about how to London public that the neighbor is superior to capital and then petition I hose the whole staff to redistribute land to the poor and miss coming first aided us Abraham Lincoln to the social democratic idea redistribution of the land he made it the law whether casted 1862 brothers and sisters do not let anyone tell you that social democratic ideas are on America in to the White House remember later his superior together now this great mystery here not the peter derivative because we have wonderful people to honor tonight but I want to recall what did that history yes there is a night back in nineteen fifty-nine and just tells you a lot about how far we do straight as the nation after 1959 on here early 1960 economy hall in new york city there was a celebration of gala event as hell LOL rosa them the former first day of united states is there hubert humphrey the future husband in the united states jacob javits the great senator from New York was there all of chapter probably all seen here in this big country hall was packed President Eisenhower sent a note saying he was sorry to that person here that I but wanted to give his respect the army the secretary-general the United Nations said I know the same how important this event was and how much he wanted to eat a varied urban hundred twenty celebration ever Roosevelt Hubert Humphrey Dwight Eisenhower who were the army to the bully Annette King a very small burger it in african-american man maybe a girlfriend 82 a grandma who in the 19-teens 1970 was called the most dangerous man in America a programmer the socialist party ended her secretary state of New York in a 1920s ato Randolph who nominated supported Norman times and every one of these questions a program so you never critical of socialist progressive the United States atl Randolph eight the random the president of motherhood has given cockers the first african-american length union in the history of the United States of those drains into the Sun an angle Randolph said to the spigot Harper's and you know the early days they're all called mr. Charlie they were even given the honor of their name because they were told it works right your day they just called Charlie ain't no Randolph organized that Union and put a clip in every car with the name of the sleeve in power cord order mr. Charlie me in those cars maybe go ran Dr said my brothers as rolled himself and roll through the Atlas is go not actions but a selfish ass I want him to walk through those cars he has those rich men those businessman sleep in Poland cars on his trains rolling across America I want you to collect the newspapers I want you to collect up any newspapers in there tossing away I wanted to take the Socialist Party papers that we give you and deliberation papers we give you and before you go to sleep at night members of the slip your forgery and pass through those other towns I want you to take your old man and you wrap it around those knickers and you toss those papers on porches of those shotgun Shack so that Africa and get the same information because when we give the information they were white listen why take your grandma later came here that there may not be near death celebration at carnegie hall and he stood up and said brothers and sisters i know we asked me wonderful Democrats who doesn't very very good things we've even got some good old experiencer Republicans in two different so but that's not enough you said to bring us down socialism so I want to leave you to do this I believe in John I'm going to do it right thing and everyone and so he said this event happen here on his seventh birthday I'm sorry I can't celebrate here tonight because I rose and sisters are at three and it has been too long and now that night hey yo grandpa said I call for marches on the Democratic and national conventions of nineteen sixty marches of african americans and their supporters in a neighborhood my brother Walter brother will march with us we will march on these connections and demanded it works in their powers and he hired a young organizer a kid the Big Shot era guy Michael Harrington and it said Michael Harrington to each of those connections to organize the largest and thousands showed up and demanded the john kennedy and lyndon johnson and richard nixon supports two months and even put lessons in their platforms but when that's vision hooked march on the conventions what's 50 what does he have a Congress agent acid and so a beretta would back to Harrington I remember was the active socialists a Beretta Magnus was part of the hair in your honor of democratic socialism organizing committee and what you came down a soulless America pair Rustin never I went to every said brothers sisters since edition we're not going to hard to have a party we're doing a march on Washington a program called up the imaginative your password you mentor done however mark king and he said dr. kidding I want you to speak it is great march on washington in dr. King said I was begin to march on Washington hey Phil Brenda if you will give you closing remarks history cheetah to the holders of our story we know the King rain weather great speeches in the history of the time but we are not forget that it was a a socialist who came to the him and outline the agenda not just for a march on Washington come on for civilized and would not stop until the zip of Jim Crow wood from this man it was a revolver Mars can you buy a house he invited him to the White House they had sandwiches after tomorrow Randolph the king Kennedy was guilty months later but a successor is his that's her litter Johnson this is religion Johnson invited paid off invite him in bio guarantee to the White House to outline an agenda for a war on poverty this was 50 years ago just 50 years ago socialism socialist ideas socialists sat in the White House of the United States as expected advisable counselors to presidents of this Republican if you want to ask yourself why we aren't always impressive as quickly as we'd like understand this throughout its history this country is not a socialist country is nozzles it's a country that has been informed by socialism and vast oceans and we ought to respect that piece of our history it is a fun during pcr history but we are not just evacuated we ought to recognize and in the 21st century if we are to be humane and just Republicans we need socialists and Social Democratic ideas as much now as we did with Tom Paine in 1790 with Abraham Lincoln in 1861 with 80 Randolph in 1963 we need these ideas they will not solve all problems but they have to be at hardness DSA is to environment close a little story from junior solos there give of american conservative action conferences a bigot assertive gathering in Washington DC and right game blogger right wing targeted I came to Washington to attend the conference they decide to take a tour of the White House and as you toward the White House they're going to the library and he saw the library several books on socialism American socialism and he said to the tour body well who's the charge library who did it and put this place together in and forgot your bow Michelle Obama advises us on library and divided God so he took his care about he took a picture of the books on socialism in the White House Library and he put up a glass and said Michelle Allah is shocking library the socialist books when all the time regular loud it was only a few hours later the depression came the White House librarian has knocked in here the 1960s under the oversight of Jackie Kennedy where she had invited the greatest cause of American history to collect 1700 books enough to fill that a small library never tell the true story of America and these historians not socialists have gathered a shelf of books on socialism because they said you cannot tell the true story of America without a socialist at Social Democratic section of your library and in depth attractive offers the side there was a another book did he didn't know that that pie as socialist there was a copy of Michael Harrington the other America right on the same shot and I know this from haven't gone month after the early 1960s when Harrington's working out those big New Yorker employment and John can read government and he said one of his chief economic advisors Wow it isn't true that poverty is bags all this I have noticed problem what I'm really here on this character book is it's incredible there's there's another America whether it's deep poverty do you have to do something about and the economic advisor so yes you really ought to read by heretics book I've got a copy of my let me go and get it for you and you brought it to John Fitzgerald Kennedy the President of the United States in my friends when you look at that White House Library and you see that book the other American women by the pound of democratic socialists of America understanding it was an all like your place to the White House Library on the President of the United States socialism is a part of American history of item and rich part and you carried forward into the go Wow you

  1. Again, neither actual socialism or capitalism has ever been tried. Capitalism means no state intervention. Never happened. Socialism is about working people controlling their own affairs. It's never happened.
    Stalin was a brutal dictator. And he was the antithesis of socialism.
    And, too, as you'd agree: what does bailing out the banks have to do with capitalism????
    Ron Paul, of course, calls himself a constitutionalist.
    I like a lot of what Paul stands for. A lot.

  2. Pure capitalism has never been tried. Capitalism means no state intervention. None. It means no public police. It means no child labor laws or minimum wage laws. That's capitalism.
    But Adam Smith supported capitalism because he said it would lead to equality. That's the goal of capitalism… but it's never been tried.
    As for actual socialism, well, it, too, has never been tried.
    Socialism is the antithesis of a Stalin-type tyranny. Stalin and Mao were dictators. Not socialists.

  3. So, Marxism is about killing people, letting people die, letting people starve to death. So, Karl Marx wanted people to starve to death. That was his goal?
    Why is the notion of working people controlling the state such a hideous idea? I mean, the core of socialism is actually democracy. It's been heavily demonized because it minimizes the power of both government and the corporate sector. Again, the core of socialism (and neither actual socialism or capitalism has ever been tried) is democracy.

  4. Most Americans, if you like at public opinion polls, are social democratic. Problem is we don't have a functioning democratic system.

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