While speaking to reporters alongside Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, President Trump took a shot across the bow at the opposition party in America. At the G-20 summit in Tokyo, the president said that he was less than “impressed” with what he’d seen of the Democrats on the debate stage last week. Judging by their economic and cultural plans for America, he said, a name change could very well be in their future.
“You know, I’ve been watching the debates a little bit in between meetings and I wasn’t impressed. It’s become like the Socialist Party,” he said. “There’s a rumor the Democrats are going to change the name of the party from the ‘Democrat Party’ to the ‘Socialist Party.'”
Of the 2020 presidential contenders, only Sen. Bernie Sanders proudly claims the identity of “democratic socialist.” However, even as the other candidates have tried to avoid the stain of that association, they have rushed to embrace the very policies that used to make Sanders unique. Whether it’s universal healthcare, free college, or confiscatory taxes, it’s hard to find a candidate in the mix who isn’t making socialism-style arguments for the future. And that’s not even getting into the cultural socialism arguments, which are even further off into looney-land. Open borders, unrestricted abortion, and gender-bending nonsense have all become the Democratic Party’s stock-in-trade.
Of course, the real problem with socialism isn’t that it will cost us an arm and a leg. That’s just Democratic Party politics as usual. The problem is that there is, at the end of the day, no way to reconcile socialism with democracy, even if you mash the words together. Socialism isn’t just an alternative to capitalism, it is an alternative to liberty. This is what many of Sanders’s fans don’t understand, and it is what Trump and the Republicans need to make crystal clear in 2020.
See, democracy – as it is understood and practiced in our great nation – extends beyond free and fair elections. It is intertwined with the economy in ways that can’t be underestimated. When an aspiring entrepreneur starts a business online and he doesn’t need to beg the federal government for permission (and give them a share in his profits), that’s part of what we mean by American democracy. When you have the freedom to choose where to shop, that’s democracy. When you can keep for yourself the profits made through your business (or at least most of them), that is inextricable from liberty, freedom, and justice for all.
Socialism, which increasingly puts the government in charge of the economy, is the cancer that ultimately kills freedom and democracy. It has happened time and time again, and it will happen once more in the United States if we let it. Almost every totalitarian country that ever existed began when the people voted themselves out of liberty. We cannot allow that to happen to us.