Opinion | This is not your grandfather's concept of socialism



"I think we're gonna have a red wave, not
a blue wave." Looks like there is a red wave coming these
midterm elections, but it's not the one Trump's been tweeting
about. "For me, democratic socialism is about, really, the value for me is that I believe that in
a modern, moral, and wealthy society, no person in America should be too poor to
live." So when most Americans think about socialism,
they're still thinking about the Cold War, they're thinking about dictatorships, they're thinking about– [scream] But democratic socialism is distinguished
from sort of "regular" socialism in that it is democratic. It is a type of socialism that is not authoritarian. At this point, probably most Americans who
are talking about democratic socialism are referring to the democratic socialist welfare
state. People call it the Nordic model. This is just a series of institutions like
old-age pensions, child allowances, universal health care, universal education. Pull up YouTube, take a look at how things
are going in Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Norway, the United Kingdom — I lived there for a
year. Not totalitarian, not scary. One of the arguments against forming kind
of a Nordic-style welfare state in the United States is that our population is too diverse. They say, "Well, the Nordic states, they're
kind of volkish, you know. They all pull together because they're homogenous
in a certain way that the United States is not." You know, the answer is we already have several
programs that are quite similar, in the way they're structured, to Nordic welfare programs. Social Security is one of them, universal
public education is another. We don't even think about these programs as
being universal public welfare programs, but that's what they are. We're used to thinking about means-tested
welfare programs, programs like SNAP, which is supplemental
nutrition assistance program, or food stamps. Those programs tend to be very divisive, and they specfically tend to be divisive across
racial lines, right? Because poverty is racialized in the United
States. I don't think it's the case that diverse countries
can't have justice. There's a lot of reasons that young people
right now, I think are interested in democratic socialism. People who are in their twenties and thirties
now have grown up in probably the worse economy since the Great Depression. The Great Recession caused a terrible job
market, it caused a lot of young people to lose opportunities
in terms of advancement, they're suffering from a lot of student debt. That's not just personal, it's not just, "Well, how do I get ahead?" It's, "How do we make this a better system?" The first-past-the-post system in the United
States, that's set up this sort of two-party duopoly make it very difficult to have any kind of
insurgent campaign for a third-party or independent party. What Bernie did was, instead of running as
an independent, he ran in the Democratic primary, and tried to pull people who were interested
in voting for Democratic candidates leftward. People's views change over time, there's
clearly a demand and in interest in the public for seeing these kinds of views represented. And I think that you're probably going to
see a lot more of that. The fact that candidates like Ocasio-Cortez
are campaigning as open democratic socialists and saying, "Well, let's address some of these big issues. Let's move the party left." I think that is an effort to address some
of those concerns, and I think it's great.




Comments
  1. "No person in America should be too poor to live," says Ocasio-Cortez. Read more about democratic socialism here: https://wapo.st/2NaHzGL

  2. AOC is absolutely our grandfather's concept of socialism. No socialist come saying "hey, we'll control your cash flow and hold some of your political rights and cut some of your freedom so we can rule over you". But they always do it because there is no way socialism can be even remotely implemented without doing it. Socialists ALWAYS come by saying they are democratic, and ALWAYS gain popularity promising heaven on earth, not much different from con men promising a $100 return over a $1 investment. Some naive lefties in America don't notice it because they they never experienced socialism in their lives and thus do not know how to identify their rhetoric. AOC is textbook socialism. Learn once and for all that you cannot have a working democracy and real socialism in the same place at the same time. You really have to choose one.

  3. Funny how social security will run out and Medicare fails a lot of people that use it(one of my family members included). Why is that I’m being told only the feel good parts about democratic socialism but NO ONE explains costs and where the hell the money comes from other then astounding taxes, OH but don’t worry, your wallet won’t notice the hit because we’ll be taxing the rich(as long as the stay in America and don’t use that wealth to move out)

  4. Socialism is a horrible idea and immoral in practice. Why I'm voting against democrats and I don't even care for politics but I know for sure I do not want to live in a socialist ran USA.

  5. I come from San Antonio and I think that Julian Castro is a disappointment to the San Antonio population.

  6. 2:33. There can’t be a third independent party. There must be three political parties based off of one political ideology, but with different plans. This will ensure that no one party will get too big.

  7. AOC and the beaver in this video, must have been from the same litter. Both equally clueless and prime examples of what the real communists in Russia and China call, "useful idiots".

  8. Nordic model? Democrat -Socialist (by the way mane at least one Socialist and at the same time Democratic country?) need to stop referring to Denmark, Norway, Germany, Switzerland, and other European countries as socialist because they are not. All these countries have a free market economy. They just have a better social safety net provided by the government for which they are heavily taxed on everything. Germany has almost 50% income tax, 19% VAT (Value Added Tax) on goods, high vehicle, and fuel tax. Also, most of these countries don't have an official minimum wage. Hmmm, true capitalism I guess, exchange of goods and services for what they worth.
    You want to use socialist countries as an example, use Venezuela, Cuba, DRK, and so on. If life under socialism is so great, why are the citizens fleeing those countries? Interesting.
    Stop looking for free handouts, go out there and earn it.

  9. And stop trying to separate communism and socialism according to Marx socialism is a step on the road to communism

  10. There really pushing socialism these days huh old school commie tactic pressure from above and below just read the naked communist a 1950s book educate urself this country isn’t perfect but I promise socialism is something far worse

  11. Still have yet to hear a concrete description of how these ideals actually get implemented. There's a reason there is no successful model for us to try to follow.

  12. I stand with the judge, America is great because of our legal system but the Muslim organizations in the USA are trying to exploit our Government system like they have done in other counties that they took over and now they are doing the same here in the USA. It is a known fact that Muslims do not like how we live in the western society so when someone challenge or when people voice out their concerns they will call it racial profiling because they are Muslims and good people like Judge Pirro and others will be rebuked. The Muslim are staring a race war and it will not matter what race you are, they are getting the blacks against the whites and once that is over with they have us right in their hands. I do not listen to anything that Omar puts out because she and the other ISIS human disposals when they ask for forgiveness repent or second chance, those are hardcore determined terrorists, Islam and
    the Quran is full of hate, violence and hypocrisy.

  13. That name “Washington” needs to be taken out of your name. Seriously, George Washington would be rolling over in his grave…

  14. You cite social security and public education as examples of universal welfare and aspects of democratic socialism. These are two of the most broken systems in US government.

  15. Hey Washington Post why don't you give your corporate shares to the People. Practice what you preach hypocrites.

  16. I built a business and sold it for $3 million. My Grandfather owned a brickyard, I remember the day he made a fatal mistake. A salesman came to try and sell a Cinder block making machine, $75,000. Grandpa didn't buy it, but his competitors did. 5 years later he could not compete with the price of cinder blocks, and since structural brick was the main part of his business the company went broke. Who is going to come up with the $75,000 to risk on a cinder block machine in a worker owned company? Workers are already able to put combine their money (capital) and put it at risk in a venture. So why don't they do it now? Or does socialism only want to steal the business AFTER its is proven viable and profitable?
    There is nothing stopping Socialists from starting their own companies.

  17. Don't let the socialists fool you folks it does not work business will just move overseas ! It might work for a while but it always ends badly in a cluster of corruption !

  18. "Democratic Socialism" is an oxymoron. Something inherently totalitarian and intrusive is in no way democratic. That's like saying "Democratic Fascism" or "Democratic Monarchy" it doesn't work. Capitalism may have its flaws but at least it has benefits, unlike socialism which has no benefits at all. We really should start considering bringing back HUAC and casting people like you to the corner of society where you belong. Any socialist regime, both foreign and domestic, ought to be violently overthrown.

  19. How is Democratic Socialism "not authoritarianism" if they want all businesses to be worker owned? It's going to take authoritarianism to confiscate those businesses.

  20. There will never be a time where a planned economy by the government would work for the benefit of the people. Unfortunately, most of the left has such a flippant attitude towards basic arithmetics that they will remain complacent thieves.

  21. After you bleed the rich dry so they can no longer afford to keep their businesses open, who pays your welfare then ?

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