Monday, November 03, 2008

Why So Socialist

Since the election is now a toddler and I hate kids, I have pretty much stopped blogging until it's over. It makes my brain hurt, mostly because of overwhelming lack of economic based reasoning.

But today, one of our family friends sent us a panicked, pro-McCain email that included the following refrain:

OBAMA IS A SOCLIAST


Now, I am not going to pick on the spelling because it was a very very long email and I actually suspect she wrote it herself. I can't type 300 words without 50% being spelt incor-wrongly. Know what I mean.

And in fairness, the argument she made was a libertarian one, not a results based one. But I am struck by the number of people who seem to believe that Democratic policies somehow drag down upper-class incomes. They don't. As Paul Krugman explains, economists don't really understand why but the fact is that incomes rise faster for *all income groups* including the upper-class/rich under Democratic administrations than republican ones. Since middle and lower-class incomes grow so slowly or decine under Republican Administraions while upper-class income does grow (albiet more slowly than under Dem administrations) they simply become better off relative to the middle and lower-classes.

My friend understands that and just doesn't care. She thinks the government has no business helping people even if that makes us all better off; it should be a personal choice. I disagree, but I get that. But I am practical and I suspect that if more people understood what being a socialist (as defined by the NeoCons) meant they'd support socialism. (Caveat that this isn't socialism, but whatever).

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