Listening to what pundits of the American news media say about our country’s politics never ceases to puzzle me. I come away believing that Americans appear to be incapable of thinking in any way or fashion other than in terms of absolutes – left or right, big or small, right or wrong, win or lose, all or nothing. It seems that they want us to ignore the wide gray areas that exist in between these extremes. Or is it that they know we easily get carried away by our boundless enthusiasm in pro or against any given premise?
I cringe when I hear some of the aspiring candidates to the 2012 Republican nomination for president disparage against the incumbent president, Barack Obama, accusing him of socialism, populism, etc.
What a nonsense. To label Obama's agenda as socialism for the sole reason of his espousing a social agenda that seeks to respond to the needs of all the people is to forget the very foundations of our nation. Let’s not forget that the premises of our Constitution—where it states that “We the People of the United States…”, or Abraham Lincoln’s most famous exhortation “…that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth”—did reflect a certain collectivism. Both statements inherently promised a social agenda, certainly not socialism.
In this year’s election, the Republicans' efforts to whitewash and return to an economic system whose reckless inequities have produced terrible suffering to our middle and working classes, and to label as socialism an agenda of providing a much needed “social contract” for all the people, is sheer stupidity.
Having a social conscience doesn’t mean socialism. It simply means common sense. In any case, it is the government’s constitutional responsibility to protect all the people, not just some people.