Like it or not, we're all socialists now. You can thank those free-market conservatives and their deregulatory idol, George W. Bush, for that. Conservatives love to wield the word socialism like some all-purpose, liberal-slaying sword. Redistribution to the poor, the right to unionize and affirmative action are decried as anti-market, unfair advantages for filthy socialists who can't compete and fail to appreciate the almighty, equalizing power of self-determination and an unfettered market. To social conservatives, Darwinism is merely an unproven "theory" about how our species evolved. But "social Darwinism" is an ineluctable fact: The smart and hardworking prosper, while the stupid and lazy fail. Yet notice how those same chest-thumping capitalists of talk radio and at the corporate-funded think tanks often fall silent in the face of fixed markets, no-bid contracts, bailouts and subsidies for the very corporations that demand less government oversight when things are going well, then turn to Washington when things go horribly wrong. The hypocrisies abound.
Those of us who work hard and pay our taxes are getting screwed. Our Christmas bonus this year? The privilege of covering the tab for greedy executives in the deregulated insurance and mortgage industries who scoff at safety nets for you but demand a safety trapeze for themselves.
As I said, we're all socialists now. Too bad all that filthy, pinko socialist redistribution is moving up, rather than down, the economic food chain.
The 'trickle up' may turn into a flood, accompanied by a sucking sound from our grandchildren's wallets.