Are Americans Closet Socialists?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Huntn, Aug 2, 2011.

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Are We Americans Closet Socialists?

  1. Want to be Totally.

    12 vote(s)
    20.0%
  2. Want to be Partially (want big 3 solvent).

    10 vote(s)
    16.7%
  3. Don't want to be but resigned cause I can't afford other options.

    2 vote(s)
    3.3%
  4. Don't want to be under any circumstances.

    13 vote(s)
    21.7%
  5. I'm not American- I think you are and you want to be.

    3 vote(s)
    5.0%
  6. I'm not American- I think you are partially and are resigned to it

    2 vote(s)
    3.3%
  7. I'm not American- I don't think yor want to be under any circumstance.

    2 vote(s)
    3.3%
  8. I'm not American and I think you can't face reality regarding Socialism

    14 vote(s)
    23.3%
  9. I'm American and undecided.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  10. I'm not American and am undecided.

    2 vote(s)
    3.3%
  1. Huntn, Aug 2, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2011

    Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #1
    Lots of talk lately on MSNBC about being Socialists, the implication that most Americans want their entitlement programs such as Social Security, Medicare, Medicade, because for many of us when we get old and have been screwed by corporate America, this is what we will have to fall back on, unless the power mongers pull the rug out from under us.

    What do you think about this? If we shutdown the big 3, would everyone be just fine and dandy? Would most of us be able to find affordable insurance? Would most of us have steady livable income? Honestly I don't know. My impression is that "things" would not be all right.

    If you are not a U.S. citizen, feel free to vote. I put some slots in for ya.
     
  2. OutThere macrumors 603

    OutThere

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #2
    I think Americans don't know what they are or what they want, politically. Fed a steady diet of Fox news and Tea party propaganda, discourse is reduced to "keep the damn gubmint outta my Medicare!"
     
  3. likemyorbs macrumors 68000

    likemyorbs

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    #3
    There needs to be a careful mixture of socialism and capitalism, we can have government funded programs without sacrificing capitalism, it's not that hard.
     
  4. quagmire macrumors 603

    quagmire

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2004
    #4
    I think Americans don't even fully understand what socialism is. They are just fed and told to fear it and hate it due to the Cold War. It's just being used to scare Americans about an opponent.
     
  5. OutThere macrumors 603

    OutThere

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #5
    It would be really interesting to see some survey research on how Americans define socialism. I've seen some polls showing that it certainly doesn't test well just as a term among the American populous, but I haven't seen any polls geared towards learning exactly what people perceive it to be. The ideal, I think, for many many people, is a healthy balance of capitalism, intelligently regulated free enterprise, and a government that can provide the various services that are not well suited to for-profit industry (infrastructure and health insurance for two).

    I think there would be considerably widespread appeal to these concepts, and much of our arguing is just about where to draw the lines, but as soon as you draw the word socialism into the debate, there is a whole mess of ugly emotions and connotations carried in the popular imagination.
     
  6. munkees macrumors 65816

    munkees

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    #6
    I am about 1/4 socialist, and about 1/3 capital list and the rest just floats around the middle.
     
  7. iStudentUK, Aug 3, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2011

    iStudentUK macrumors 65816

    iStudentUK

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2009
    Location:
    London
    #7
    It does seem there is an irrational fear of socialism in many parts of the US. The military spending seems to be left over from the Cold War, if my government spent 4.7% of GDP on the military I'd be furious! It almost seems many believe if you bring in some socialist policies and cut military spending the Reds will win! The world isn't going to fall apart if America improves the lives of its citizens at the expense of a few tanks.

    I'm soon starting at a law firm where I would may the opportunity to work in New York for 6 months. I think it would be a great experience, but I was thinking 6 months would be great, but I wouldn't wasn't to go any longer than that. I'd have to give up too much, I've been spoiled by socialism/liberalism!
     
  8. xUKHCx Administrator emeritus

    xUKHCx

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    Location:
    The Kop
    #8
    Such as? Working as an expat in a law firm in the US I doubt there is really that much in terms of what the government gives us that will not be provided by your position/firm. Afterall you will be one of the haves rather than the have-nots.

    I think there is a clash between the "American dream" and socialism which adds a great deal of friction in regards to what is deemed socialism in the US. The idea that anyone can make it on their own means that a lot of people are unwilling to support social help. Of course this totally forgets all those people who helped out the lone entrepreneur who has done it for themselves along the way.
     
  9. iStudentUK macrumors 65816

    iStudentUK

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2009
    Location:
    London
    #9
    Yes, it wouldn't be like arriving on a boat as an immigrant in the 1930s! But there are some things I'd lose. In the short term I'd be lucky to get half the holiday entitlement, much longer working hours, if I were to become very ill I'd get better pay in the UK, lower redundancy packages (important for commercial lawyers!). In the more long term if I start a family I'd get worse parental leave, I'd have to save an awful lot for school/university etc. I'm not sure a 25% pay rise is worth all that for more than six months!

    I'm sure a lot of Americans would love longer holidays etc, but a lot seem to view government interference in employment contracts as undesirable. How many millions still live in "at will" employment states?!
     
  10. Huntn, Aug 3, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2011

    Huntn thread starter macrumors G5

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #10
    I should have added more choices - I'm not American and I think Socialism is a vile system or it's the best! Maybe in another poll. :)

    What maybe a famous Tea Party rally sign, a protestor's message "keep government hands off my medicare". I really have no idea what this means as medicare is a government program so by definition the government is all over it. I tend to think this knowledgeable (sarcasm) individual somehow thought the government was going to turn his medicare into a government program! :rolleyes:

    In a nutshell, America (U.S.) is the land of opportunity and we all have the ability to be rich and live like kings. The perception is that Socialism squashes this opportunity. What is not understood is that unregulated Capitalism can be very ugly. I'm not suggesting the U.S. form of Capitalism is currently unregulated, but there are many aspects of it that are headed down that road. We are heading back to the good ole days (sarcasm) of tycoons and moguls in the 1800s, lifting them up on the backs of the little people.

    The fear is that socialism makes us all 100% equal at a station lower that we can achieve by hard work. Nothing can match the heady days following WWII where based on a high school education, as an employee you could make enough at a job to own a house, raise a family, and have a good life. Those days are long gone. I believe we are going to turn into a place such as India in the 1980s with an abundance of college grads and no meaningful work for them. Corporate America is busy shipping every decent job it can to outside our borders.

    My impression is that socialism can be structured so that there is still reward for hard work and success, but the extremes at both ends of the spectrum are controlled. Not the first time I've said this, but does anyone need to be allowed to make more than $1m per year? I say no.

    Evidenced by those who call Social Security a ponzi scheme. An easy way to discredit the program by turning it into a flim flam. It's not different than insurance, but it has been horribly managed since it's inception by every political party who has had the chance at it.
     
  11. FX120 macrumors 65816

    FX120

    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    #11
    Of course the people receiving (or will be soon) the government money like it. They're crack addicts.

    That doesn't mean that those programs are functional, efficient, sustainable and should be left as they currently sit.
     
  12. samiwas macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2006
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    #12
    Wow. Really? All people receiving government money are crack addicts? So someone who's lost his job and gets unemployment immediately becomes a crack addict? Someone who works 80 hours a week at a minimum wage job, but still has to get some assistance to feed their family is obviously a crack addict? Wow.
     
  13. Huntn thread starter macrumors G5

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #13
    They should be modified to be viable, but retained. The number one federal crime of the last 50 years has been Congress thinking it is ok to raid the Social Security fund. This is money citizens paid into for their retirement, not the funding of the running of government.
     
  14. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    Joined:
    May 7, 2004
    Location:
    Sod off
    #14
    The US political scene carries a lot of baggage as a result of historic
    "Red Scare" responses to communism and Cold War propaganda. As a result, most Americans are largely ignorant when it comes to understanding socialism as a political philosophy.
     
  15. barkomatic macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2008
    Location:
    Manhattan
    #15
    The vast majority of Americans don't understand the differences between socialism, communism and capitalism -- and its fairly obvious based upon the remarks I hear and read about.

    I think if we all did have a clear understanding of these philosophies I think most Americans would lean toward socialism at this point.

    However, prior to that its getting obvious to me that we will sadly have to experiment with a relatively pure libertarian take on capitalism -- since its fashionable to flash copies of Ayn Rand books and gripe about "parasites". This period will be brief, as unregulated capitalism leads to financial ruin 100% of the time very quickly. After rebuilding, I think we'll find ourselves in what would be defined as a socialist state.
     
  16. tunerX Suspended

    tunerX

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #16
    Captain literal?
     
  17. garybUK Guest

    garybUK

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    #17
    Seems like capitalism is working out just fine :cool:

    In any system the downfall is always the people, they become corrupt
    A nice blend of all the systems seems to be just right? i don't know, but i do like the fact that I have no fear or paying out if I become ill.

    Human life should not be sold off to the lowest bidder and be a 'for-profit' business.
     
  18. Pachang macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    #18
    IMO: The US has moved away from free-market capitalism and in recent years (since 9/11) is heading rapidly towards corporatism (fascism). People are mislabeling corporatism as socialism because the democrats and republicans use the socialist sympathies of their voters to get their corporatist policies through (Mussolini did this as well).

    Every time the central planning of the government or the federal reserve causes a problem with the economy it gets blamed on free-market capitalism. See The great depression and the 07-08 financial crisis and this Macrumors thread
     
  19. chrmjenkins macrumors 603

    chrmjenkins

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2007
    Location:
    CA
    #19
    One of the central problems is that when a public option was being discussed, people viewed it as a "government takeover of healthcare." This was extremely short-sighted, as for every single proposal out there, the providers of the service were going to remain privately held. This is in complete contradiction to the definition of socialism, which dictates that the government controls the means of production. In this case, this means they would have to own the hospitals and practices that were providing the care. Aside from VA hospitals, this is not, and has never been, the case.
     
  20. Pachang macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    #20
    Yep. That's why Obamacare isn't socialism (public ownership of means of production), it's corporatism (unity of government and corporations).
     
  21. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    #21
    The majority of Americans are too ****ing dumb to even understand what socialism means. This poll goes way over their heads. :rolleyes:


    The biggest problem with our country is that we rely too much on corporations. The people need the services these corporations provide. However, the corporations don't give a **** about the people, the environment, or anything but their bottom line. You can't have essential services provided by something that only cares about making a profit, it won't work.
     
  22. Huntn thread starter macrumors G5

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #22
    Wow, great post. Some American's hate public eduction I guess because it's a form of socialism? Giving up your money for other people is... bad, right?

    The statistics of education for Americans in math and science places us as 49th. That is dismal, 48 other countries that are doing better than we are. I believe this falls right into the laps of the GOPpers who believe in the privileged class. What is most annoying is the thought of slackers beings passed along on elite coat tails because their parents can afford to send them to private school while other talented but not economically sustainable students will be short changed for the "worthy children".
     
  23. MacHamster68 macrumors 68040

    MacHamster68

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2009
    #23
    US americans socialists ? yes of course they are, they even have their own
    "Anti-Fascist Protection Rampart" on the border to Mexico
     
  24. NutsNGum macrumors 68030

    NutsNGum

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Location:
    Glasgow, Scotland
    #24
    Give it a few years, the Tories will put an end to that.

    With their undermining of working time directives and pension cuts for doctors and nurses they seem to be trying to incentivise a large proportion of NHS staff to come round to adopting a privatised healthcare model.
     
  25. tigres macrumors 68040

    tigres

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2007
    Location:
    Land of the Free-Waiting for Term Limits
    #25
    Many americans that are on welfare, won't get off the governments tit; why? because they don't have to.

    I have the biggest problem paying for that, and so do many others. It's pretty black and white as to who needs assistance and who does not in my book, but keep the propaganda coming.
     

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