The Republican National Committee had its fun, tossing the “S” word at the Democrats. Reports the Washington Times:
The Republican National Committee passed a resolution at a special session Wednesday condemning President Obama and the Democratic majority in Congress for leading the United States toward socialism, a victory for the party’s beleaguered chairman who sought the toned-down language in the measure.
RNC Chairman Michael S. Steele adamantly had opposed the initial version of the resolution that had – presumptuously, some Republicans thought – called on the Democrats to rename themselves “the Democratic Socialist Party.”
Jim is a bit more forgiving than me about this slightly bizarre exercise. Adopting a formal resolution for the sole purpose of name-calling seems a waste of time. After all, the Democrats are preparing to rule and ruin while the Republican Party looks like little more than a collection of road kill.
There’s also the point made by Cato Institute President Ed Crane that President Obama is more statist than socialist. Obama might be the most statist president ever. Still, there is a difference.
But my biggest beef is: who are the RNC members calling socialists? President George W. Bush and the Republican Congress engaged in an orgy of spending and added the biggest expansion of the welfare state in four decades. They centralized more power in Washington. The Bush administration pushed the financial bail-out by threatening doom otherwise. The Bush administration tossed billions at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to bail them out without proposing any limits on their money-losing activities. The Bush administration chose to bail out the auto industry, lemon socialism at its most sour. The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, John McCain, came up with one of the dumbest ideas all year–having Uncle Sam buy every bad mortgage in America at face value. He also was a great fan of cap and trade environmental controls, the centerpiece of the Democratic environmental program.
Yes, the Democrats are worse. They are thorough-going, big-spending statists. But the RNC can’t very well toss around the word socialist unless its members look in the mirror while doing so.