I Have Never Met a Republican Who Wasn’t a Socialist

Harry Welty

Well known Republican Socialists
Well known Republican Socialists

The Mueller Report has been turned in and Trump’s new Attorney General has been quick to claim that whatever else it found it doesn’t prove that candidate Trump was guilty of a “conspiracy.” Trumplicans have been quick to seize the “vindication” card and are accusing Democrats of being dirty, rotten socialists and worse. Why Congressman Mo Brooks of Missouri just went to the House floor to quote Adolph Hitler to warn us that Hitler’s National Socialist Party (the Nazis) were the model for America’s socialists otherwise known as the Democratic Party.

Let me be clear. We have two socialist political parties in the United States. If Democrats are fascists so too are the Republicans. I am an avidly political 68-year-old. I descend from a line of Republicans going back to the Civil War. The fact is I have never met a Republican who wasn’t a Socialist!

Well, there may have been one exception. My Grandfather who died in 1972 is probably the closest I’ve come to meeting a Republican who wasn’t a socialist. He was so opposed to Medicare that my liberal Republican Dad, his son-in-law, had to argue with him to sign up for the program by reminding him he was paying for it with his taxes. That’s why I find the current Republican hysteria about Democrats fomenting Socialism humorous even if it is a Missouri Republican’s “big fat lie” and not Nazi Germany’s “Big Lie.” 

I was a card-carrying Republican from the 1970’s to just shy of 2005. I remember my irritation at Democrats for always telling voters at election time that Republicans wanted to gut Social Security. Make no mistake the “Social” in Social Security is there for one simple reason. SS is every bit as Socialist as any government run program our NATO allies have enacted for their “nanny states.” Apparently Americans forgot that it’s been a socialist government-run program since it was enacted by FDR. “Keep your damn hands off my Social Security” was the rallying cry at countless Republican inspired Tea Party rallies ten years ago. 

You see, back when I was a Republican, like most other common-sense Republicans, I only wanted to tinker to make sure Social Security lasted through a significant dip in the American “pay as you go” working population. I wanted to defer retirement age in the face of lifespans that had grown longer by decades and by disenrolling rich people from its benefits. 

I doubt that even my Grandfather was a pure anti-socialist. In his college yearbook I found a memento of the 1912 Teddy “Trust Buster” Roosevelt, Bull Moose, presidential campaign. As a college debater he had argued for a National Bank something which Teddy’s administration put into place as our Federal Reserve Banking System. Twenty years before that my Grandfather’s proud Republican Father joined fellow farmers calling on the Government to protect them from railroad monopolies that gouged them with ruinous freight charges to haul their produce. And, as noted previously, my Grandfather did succumb to my Father’s entreaties to accept Medicare.

Even when I was young John Birchers, the Republican Party’s lunatic fringe, equated socialism with communism. Never mind, that all our NATO allies were socialists and steadfast against Soviet Russian aggression. The Republican Party kept Birchers at a distance until Ronald Reagan retired and his “Big Tent” filled up with Birchers eager to purge it of the likes of me. The Trump Administration has been their Godsend. Once fretful about socialist eminent domain they have a Supreme Court majority that ruled that people’s homes can be sold to big business for economic development and that corporations now have the citizenship right to buy politicians with a bottomless corporate checkbook. 

Twenty years ago I came home to find a freshly published copy of Mein Kampf in my house. Hitler’s screed called for the erasure of Jews. The Nazi’s used to give the book to newlyweds. Maybe it was an aphrodisiac. How in God’s green Earth did it get into my house? It was my ten-year-old son’s doing. He was furious that a dim-witted teacher had allowed bullies in his class to make his life miserable. It was meant to be a good-bye present. I explained to him that however awful his teacher had been this went beyond the pale. I confiscated the book. And now a chucklehead Congressman from Missouri, who clearly studied hard in his “How to be a Republican 101” class, is doing to Democrats what my ten-year-old tried to do to an incompetent teacher. Democrats equal socialism which equals fascism!!! Congressman Brooks hasn’t got a clue. Hitler put commies in the concentration camps along with Jews, gays and Gypsies. 

I learned that the United States had a mixed economy, partly socialist and partly free enterprise, in my high school Social Problems class at the same time Donald Trump should have learned the same thing at the Wharton School of Finance. I want to see his college transcripts! 

Harry Welty is a local eccentric and perennial candidate for public office in Duluth who also pontificates on his blog: www.lincolndemocrat.com.