Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Is the United States Now Socialist?

Judging from the screaming banner headlines and the self-serving justifications of politicians and financiers being given for the semi-nationalization of a number of banks in the United States, socialism is well on its way to being established as national policy. The continuing stream of bailouts is bad enough. To have the State take over even a portion of the direct ownership of the means of acquiring and possessing private property (money and credit), however, is even more dangerous.

The powers-that-be probably regard this as a "temporary" measure to meet the current emergency. You don't have to be a very good student of history, however, to know how frequently "temporary" solutions have a way of becoming permanent, whether you're talking the expedient of the living wage to meet workers' income needs while presumably on the way to becoming owners, to the State itself that supposedly withers away under socialism. (For the record, we do not view the State as anything other than a necessary tool that, because of humanity's essential political nature, will never wither away. The problem is using the tool of the State properly, not abolishing it or making it supreme.)

The only way to justify what the federal government has announced is to regard it as an extreme measure to meet an equally extreme emergency — but that is not enough. In order to allow such an inroad on private property by the State, there must be a mechanism put in place to divest the government of ownership before the nationalization takes place. Anything less means that the bureaucrats will make continuing excuses to avoid surrendering control.

Such a mechanism has been proposed many times already on this blog: Capital Homesteading for Every Citizen. Before the federal government takes control, there should be a specific and timely plan to surrender control. Anything else is to virtually guarantee that socialism is here to stay.

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