With this piece I'm going to layout what democratic socialism is and what Senator Bernie Sanders is running on as a Democratic Socialist for president and the results and what comes from democratic socialist policies.
Richard Ebeling, is right when he says that Bernie Sanders economic vision for America is what President Franklin Roosevelt laid out in his 1944 Economic Bill of Rights speech. Not talking about nationalizing private industries and companies other than health insurance and perhaps health care in general. What Democratic Socialists in America want to do is build off both the New Deal and the Great Society and create things like a guaranteed national basic income, attempting to outlaw poverty with a fifteen-dollar an hour living wage, plus government-run health care, guaranteed affordable housing, to use as examples. Democratic Socialists, want a superstate and regulatory state, to be balanced in with the American private enterprise system.
The problems with democratic socialism is that its very expensive. By simply saying all of these new government benefits can be paid for simply buy taxing the rich 50, 60, 70% or more, is not believable. The IRS, will never see that money from the rich, because the rich would end up moving that money out of the country before they get their tax bills. So of course the middle class would get stuck with these huge government funded tax bills. So their taxes will go up dramatically whether they can afford to pay them or not, while the wealthy will still do be doing very well in or outside of America. Depending on whether they decide to stay in the country, or move to a country where the government doesn't believe they own most of what a person makes in their country.
So the costs that come with democratic socialism is just one problem. And of course Democratic Socialists point to Scandinavia and how successful it has been over there. Which would explain why social democracies like Sweden have now cut back on their welfare state. And expecting more from their own people in paying for their own cost of living. So even Socialists now see the limits to what big government can do for their people. And not only that, but when you talk about Scandinavia, you're talking about four unless you include Iceland, small countries with a good deal of land. At least with Norway, Sweden and Finland, that are all bigger than Iraq in size and about the size of Afghanistan. That have very small Nordic populations and are all not just energy independent, but produce and export a lot of their own energy. They can afford to be very socialist.
But the costs of democratic socialism are just one problem that I have with it. This idea that people shouldn't be expected to work and achieve success in life, because big government has now assumed the responsibility for everyone's personal welfare, seems anti-freedom and Un-American to me as a Liberal. Americans, want to live in freedom and be able to take care of themselves. They want the skills to be able to get a good job and make their own way in life and not be dependent on big government for their personal welfare. A lot of Americans are ashamed when they need to go on Unemployment Insurance and other public assistance to get by. And we tend not to want to be guaranteed a basic middle class income simply for being alive in America.
To have the strongest economy possible in America, the most Americans possible need to be able to achieve economic success. And that comes with risks like some people doing a lot better than others and some people falling down and needing help getting back up. But to have the most successful people in America as possible economic success needs to be encouraged. Not discouraged with high taxes and huge welfare benefits. And you do that by encouraging economic development, quality education and making that universal, job training for low-income and low-skilled workers and a modern infrastructure system, so everyone can take advantage of what America has to offer. You don't do that through democratic socialism and encouraging people to live off of big government.