We love to categorize and stereotype people, we Americans do.
If you think or act a certain way, then comes the label. If for example you are for women’s rights, radically so, and for abortion, then by definition you must be a liberal. To the contrary, if you are dead set against abortion and want the practice outlawed at any stage, then of course you must be a conservative. Then of course come the political labels like Republican, Libertarian, Democrat, Independent, even Communist or Socialist in the political arena. No matter that most Americans have thoughts, opinions, ideas and beliefs which transcend categories and crossover established parameters. Once you are labeled, it seems always to follow, does it not?
But of course there are considerable differences between conservative and liberal. There are far more differences than similarities, agreements. The differences prevail. The differences in thinking divide. There seems to be an America today no common ground. You are liberal or you are conservative and that’s that!
But perhaps the biggest difference between a liberal and a conservative is ECONOMIC. It is, came the old cliché from the Bill Clinton era, the economy, stupid. That it seems is far and away the number one issue in America and it seems it always will be. A conservative we are told believes strongly in CAPITALISM. That is, bedrock economic freedoms, the freedom of the individual especially to live life, earn according to his or her capabilities and to enjoy the fruits of that work ethic and those earnings. All of that, ALL OF THAT with as little government control or involvement as possible.
The so-called liberal, by contrast seems to be very much opposed to capitalism especially in any extreme form and rather champions all or a significant part of the philosophy of SOCIALISM. In essence, socialism would have government control the economy and not individuals. Government is good and individuals are greedy, so say the socialists and of course the extreme socialists the communists and the nihilists who wish to control everything economic.
The liberals, the socialists believe in an ECONOMIC LEVELING. That is, no one should be too rich and no one should be too poor. And of course it is the almighty government, all wise and good which decides the economic parameters how much you can earn and how much you should earn. No matter how bright, or creative, or hardworking or expert, there is only so much money you should make. There should never be, according to the socialists a Warren Buffett, or a Bill Gates, men works tens and tens of billions of dollars. And there should never be individuals and families living below the government established poverty line. Both are unacceptable and only government, all good and all-wise government can decide how this leveling, these standards of economic equality should be determined and consequently applied. The benefits especially economic of any society should be equally distributed somehow and the work product, work ethic and ultimate economic contribution of any individual should be reexamined, reinterpreted and reevaluated, especially REEVALUATED. There may not be, says the socialist, that much difference between one impoverished and on welfare and a Mark Zuckerberg, worth perhaps $200 billion. No matter that Zuckerberg produced something of incredible value for all Americans and even humans the world over, Facebook no matter how original, different or better should never have profited Zuckerberg so many hundreds of billions of dollars. Therefore, level economically and redistribute. Doesn’t that remind you of Obama and company? Get back that money so good government can redistribute it.
The socialist as well is very much against competition, especially aggressive competition. Capitalism, on the other hand, views competition as the lifeblood, the energy source of the entire economy. But fair competition, ethical competing for an ultimate economic position which produces money, profit but much more. Competition, says capitalism, brings out the best in individuals and business entities. Not the worst, not greed, not things unethical as socialism would aver. The more aggressive the competition, says the socialist, the more unfair and unethical and therefore good old government must step in, impede, prohibit and otherwise completely control such economic conduct for the good of society and the leveling off of the individual. Yet, the most dramatic successes, the most benefit for a free and Democratic society come from the production of profit, business entities at work at their best which in fact are for the good of society and for significant benefit to the majority of individuals. A bustling economy grows a society. It recreates wealth and allows individuals the security of employment and the opportunity to increase earnings as that employment stabilizes and grows. Competition strong and creative produces OPPORTUNITY. That is, opportunity for every individual. A growing economy by definition creates opportunity which brings out the very best in individuals, who can join the competitive, growing economic environment, be part of the process and both produce and share in the benefits as they occur.
No matter the socialist approach, there can be no individual anywhere who does not wish opportunity, ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY. A teenage girl babysits in order to get more, get ahead. A teenage boy mows lawns, delivers papers, works part-time at McDonald’s to get more, to get ahead. That is opportunity at work. To pursue opportunity and gain is strong evidence of the work product, the economic desires in the individual, evidence of the desire of that individual to participate in the economic benefits of society, while at the same time becoming a productive factor in the further production of benefits through productive work. Then, a business career develops and expertise follows. Education years beyond high school produce a professor expert and tenured, above the others. A lawyer becomes top of the field legally. Plumbers and electricians become the best at their trades, setting new and better standards and perhaps ultimately owning their own businesses. So the economic system of CAPITALISM goes, and with it comes growth, new benefits, better standards of living and ultimate fulfillment of the individual involved. It is the work ethic, THE COMPETITIVE WORK ETHIC of the individual which drives the capitalist society.
But it is the control of government and consequently society which fuels socialism. Competition, economic competition is the enemy. Unbridled capitalism is evil, so the socialists say. Therefore, there must be Dodd-Frank, perhaps one of the most controlling pieces of legislation ever generated. We the government must control the economy, the banks, Wall Street, hedge funds no matter the good they do so that we the government can determine how they lend, utilize money and otherwise, as individual and non-government entities, control the economy. We the government, says the socialist, says we should have an extremely active FEDERAL RESERVE which controls dollars, interest rates and so much more. Individual banks and financial entities can not be trusted to do the right thing, but when it comes to money, greed and a lust for profit will ultimately prevail at that capitalistic level. The socialistic tending government intends at all times to control this economic evil.
But the ultimate weapon of the socialist is THE TAX. The more the better. The higher the tax rates, the more money comes under the control of government. The more money government can take from the economy, and spend its way, the better for society so goes the mantra. So many Americans forget that in the era surrounding the Great Depression of 1929, tax rates rose to a high of:
Can you possibly imagine earning $100 and having the government take $90 in taxes? It once did. Today, the highest tax rate is at or about 40%, far below the once 90% say the socialists, who have an avowed objective to get that tax rate back up if not to 90% then as close to that as possible. The goal at all times is to:
TAX THE RICH
Whoever they are and whatever is rich. Obama, in his infinite wisdom, his deeply socialistic wisdom, thinks that the maximum anyone should make it at or about $250,000 annually no matter the profession or expertise or work ethic, and anything above that should be severely taxed, perhaps back to the old rate of 90%. It is so interesting in America how a man who never held a competitive job, or never worked productively and economically in society could determine in his infinite wisdom what people should make. But the socialist pontificates no matter how inaccurate or naïve knowing little or nothing about the economy, business or the hard work or effort invested to make things successful. The tax, implemented by the dreaded IRS is the ultimate weapon of the socialist. Get that money away from the individual, from capitalism and back into the socialistic vortex. Too clashing philosophies, theories of society and government:
CAPITALISM AND SOCIALISM
There comes now a man like Donald Trump, an avowed proponent of open and aggressive capitalism. The so-called economic greed which the socialist sees is in fact good for America. Trump believes in an aggressive, opportunistic, fully and unfettered capitalism no matter how he would placate the liberal.
Then comes Bernie Sanders, an avowed socialist who would control, tax and otherwise make certain that government, not individuals run the economy. That anti-capitalistic aggression on the part of Sanders even forces a so-called timid, liberal centrist like Hillary Clinton to move left, even far left in her economic positions. Out come the proposals like a $15 per hour minimum wage which if implemented, would produce a rampant unemployment to the detriment of the young and the poor, and the elderly. Virtually everything the government takes never reproduces or reinvests itself in the economy. It is spent, not invested, once and done. It would be really interesting for America to have a choice for election of President November 2016 of Donald Trump Republican and Bernie Sanders Democrat. Such an election option would go far beyond the traditional definition of liberal and conservative. We the people would have as President one who is an avowed capitalist on the one hand and the other an avowed and open socialist. America would be vastly different for four years depending upon the one who occupied the White House.
The vast majority of Americans want opportunity. They want to grow economically. They have no problem with fair competition. That is so because they want to do better, work differently and make good money things happen for their families and themselves. They are therefore good capitalists.
But at the same time, even those capitalists are concerned with the poor. There should indeed be a fair minimum wage with certain benefits. Perhaps there should be a certain tax consideration for those individuals, somewhat lower but with an understanding of the tax preference. A benign capitalism would welcome a safety net where needy, truly needy individuals are aided by government, whether Medicare and Medicaid, Social Security, food stamps and the like. That economic social safety net is not the province of the liberal but in fact the other side of a productive capitalism.
So I ask:
WHICH ARE YOU?
Essentially capitalist or socialist. You are, no matter who you are, some of each. The more capitalistic you are, the more you tend conservative and Republican. The more socialistic you are, the more you tend Democrat and liberal. You will have a choice, a clear choice in November to vote the candidate for President who best reflects what you believe, a clearer choice perhaps than you may have ever had before. The one you elect, the candidate we elect from either party may well determine the economic future of our beloved America forevermore.