|To the Editor: Rants about socialism lack facts||| Print ||
|Written by V.N. Krishnan|
|Monday, 30 November 2009 09:38|
There is not a shred of factual statistics on health care in a recent letter that claims that the "crown jewel of socialism is about to be forced down our throat". Between 1990 and 2009 the national health expenditure rose from $714 billion to $2,555 billion (258 percent). The private share of this shows a steady decline from 60 percent in 1990 to 51 percent in 2009, while that of the public increased from 40 to 49 percent for that period. A 51 to 49 percent share also means an almost equal sharing of the faults of the system by both. If the pure market system takes care of our health care why do we have any problems with it and keep debating about it for years? How does the paranoia of socialism fit into this fact?
No explanation has been offered as to what the writer means by "socialism". An in depth study of our labor movement, about which I taught to graduate students for over two decades, will show, that it rejected any state interference from day one in forging the principle of collective bargaining within the confines of the Wagner Act of 1932. To date, I have yet to see from those who rant about our country heading towards socialism an explanation of even the rudiments of its features, let alone its origins and its numerous variants.
How is the slogan "No child left behind" not socialism? How is the Preamble on which our nation is founded not socialism? It is exactly similar to the clarion call "Liberty Equality and Fraternity" of the French Revolution which resulted in the sewers of Paris flowing with blood instead of sewage. We even invoked their help to throw out the Brits so that we could create a society with equal justice for all. Sounds socialistic to me.
Socialism in the post WW II period is far different from its modern founders, the Fabians and Sir William Beveridge. It has its roots long before Marx and many changes after him. With our obsession with sport, sex, sensationalism and the soap opera we get hypnotized by the media and view any attempt at reform as socialism. Little do we realize that our undoing, is heading towards a deadly view of the rule of law. Under-mining a government is synonymous with unleashing anarchy. Nothing is more self destructive than irresponsible exercise of freedom. Freedom is the heaviest burden we bear and not a privilege to brag about.
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