Biden's Choice: Semi-Fascism or American Socialism

  

Category:  Op/Ed

Via:  vic-eldred  •  4 weeks ago  •  24 comments

By:   Daniel Henninger (WSJ)

Biden's Choice: Semi-Fascism or American Socialism
The two parties are far apart on policy substance, making voter choices stark.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



Joe Biden, former peacemaker, has become more than a little obsessed recently with something called "MAGA." "MAGA Republicans" is a phrase the president invokes constantly.

He has chosen Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia to give a much-hyped speech Thursday on MAGA and the "continued battle for the soul of the nation." At a Democratic rally last week he went deep into his MAGA well, likening it to "semi-fascism."

One has to admit that “MAGA” sounds weirdly sinister, like the old political joke about a candidate who railed that his opponent’s sister was a “known thespian.” Mr. Biden surely knows (or maybe he doesn’t know) that MAGA stands for Make America Great Again. What’s not to like about that, other than the guy who’s making money selling red MAGA hats?

Labor Day weekend marks the push toward the midterm elections. Meanwhile, the Biden Justice Department is  keeping the news stocked  with pieces of the FBI’s raid on Mar-a-Lago. Coincidence? I think not!
We’re in an election cycle, so on cue the Democrats roll out the  Donald J. Trump  monolith to frighten the population. Mr. Trump himself never looks a gift horse in the mouth.
Politicians go negative because negative works. The pity here is that this November’s elections are indeed important because the first two years of Mr. Biden’s presidency have become consequential.
Inflation is the No. 1 issue on voters’ minds now. But in 2020 the top issue was the Covid-19 pandemic. Whichever candidate won would be responsible for reviving post-pandemic America by addressing the multiple disruptions to the country’s economic and social life.

Mr. Biden ran and won as a moderate. His presidency’s policies have not been moderate. The Democratic Party’s two leading moderates are Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, who spent most of the past two years opposing Mr. Biden’s policy goals, which quickly became contiguous with the party progressives Mr. Biden ran against—Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

Let’s get in the semi-spirit of this semi-moment by suggesting that the Biden-Sanders-Warren Democrats now stand for semi-socialism. And that their method for putting much of their policy objectives in place is semi-authoritarianism, which its proponents simply call “bypassing Congress.” That would be the legislative branch that is the product of millions of individual votes.

The Supreme Court’s recent message in  West Virginia v. EPA  was that “bypassing Congress” can be, at the least, unconstitutional.





Another word in our politics that is supposed to invoke abhorrence is “polarization,” as if it were only the result of bloody-minded politicians. But the policy initiatives of the Biden presidency prove the two parties are  far apart, and that the choices voters need to make about their future are increasingly stark.





The historians who told Mr. Biden in March 2021 to  “go big” like Franklin Roosevelt  knew what they wanted—a U.S. economy actively directed by government rather than shaped by private economic choices.

For the Biden White House, addressing the country’s immediate post-pandemic problems—high inflation, labor-market distortions, supply-chain impediments—is a secondary concern, at best. Instead, they are implementing policies on an array of longer-term goals, such as healthcare, climate, education and financial regulation.
The new legislation will let Medicare introduce price controls on pharmaceuticals. The bill spends $369 billion to achieve far-in-the-future climate goals, primarily with tax credits for electric vehicles and federal subsidies for renewables. Some $80 billion for IRS enforcement will target the small and medium-size businesses attempting to recover from the pandemic’s government-ordered dislocations. As justification for Mr. Biden’s massive student-loan forgiveness order, the administration cited the fig leaf of a Covid “emergency,” though in fact this policy goal predates the pandemic.

To reduce the suppressive effects of regulatory excess on private economic activity, the Trump administration introduced “one-in, two-out” streamlining, where for every rule added, two had to be repealed. The Biden government rescinded that initiative.

Despite the pain of higher costs for gasoline, home heating fuels and indeed a historic energy-related crisis in Europe over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the administration has implemented policies to eliminate the U.S. fossil-fuel industry by banning pipeline construction and shutting in production leases.

The scale of Mr. Biden’s use of executive orders is unprecedented , making the issue of semi-authoritarianism at least a talking point. The political left of its nature recognizes no limits on public power. But other than world wars, it isn’t clear the American people consider relentless benevolent statism to be inside this country’s traditions, as Mr. Biden now enthusiastically believes.

Congressional Republicans are losing ground in polls partly because of abortion but largely because the party out of power has no public self-definition. Newt Gingrich, along with the visionary Republican Rep. Dick Armey, overcame that minority substance problem before the 1994 midterms by issuing the  Contract With America .

But an unexpected opportunity has emerged. Mr. Biden, by blurting out unscripted what he and many progressive Democrats believe—that much of the country is now semi-fascist—has opened a door to debating whether his presidency is semi-socialist. And whether that’s where America wants to go.


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Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1  seeder  Vic Eldred    4 weeks ago

Yes....The door Biden opened is wide open and the debate about Biden's Socialist policies needs to begin.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Participates
1.1  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    4 weeks ago

I would much rather have a capitalist constitutional republic mixed with a bit of socialism to help women, children, the elderly, disabled and the needy than a capitalist constitutional republic with a bit of fascism blended in that only helps white conservative Christian nationalists.

Also, having a small bit of socialist programs that create a safety net for the most vulnerable has FAR less chance of tipping our nation into a socialist State whereas even a tiny bit of fascist 'Dear Leader' authoritarian worship can lead many, as we saw January 6th, to think it's okay to overthrow our current system of government, violate the constitution, all to install their chosen populist wannabe dictator into power. If we allow such right wing ideology to grow there is no doubt we will follow in Russia's footsteps and be a constitutional Republic in name only, where elections are rigged by the right wing fascist strongman in power and the elected representatives are effectively captives of an authoritarian dictator.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
1.1.1  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @1.1    4 weeks ago
I would much rather have a capitalist constitutional republic mixed with a bit of socialism to help women, children, the elderly, disabled and the needy than a capitalist constitutional republic

You already have that.

Also, having a small bit of socialist programs that create a safety net for the most vulnerable

Small bit?  Federal outlays:

  • Social Security 21%
  • Health Care  25%
  • Income Security (Food Stamps, SSI,  TANF,EITC, housing assistance) 11%
  • VA +Fed Retirees 7%
  • Total 64%
  • Debt Interest 7%
  • Everything else 29%
 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
2  devangelical    4 weeks ago

trump's republican party for 2022 -

roe v wade overturned by thumper SCOTUS

J6 insurrection and coup attempt investigation

multiple ongoing DOJ investigations against the former POTUS

multiple ongoing state AG investigations against the former POTUS

yeah, good luck with all that and see you at the polls in [November deleted]

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Guide
2.1  Greg Jones  replied to  devangelical @2    4 weeks ago

We're waitin' for ya!  Be prepared to be smitten fiercely and vanquished into obscurity!

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
2.1.1  seeder  Vic Eldred  replied to  Greg Jones @2.1    4 weeks ago

I think they've had enough. It's time for them to find a hug.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Guide
3  Greg Jones    4 weeks ago

I can't wait to not watch this inarticulate clown mumble his way through another "fireside chat". An FDR he ain't.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3.1  seeder  Vic Eldred  replied to  Greg Jones @3    4 weeks ago

I have to watch...just for laughs!

They are juicing him up with Prevagen right now.  His eyes look like silver dollars. They'll have two teleprompters and a note in his hand. Susan's fingers will be crossed!

 
 
 
dennissmith
Freshman Silent
3.2  dennissmith  replied to  Greg Jones @3    4 weeks ago

Mumbling clown describes Biden perfectly.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
4  seeder  Vic Eldred    4 weeks ago

Not even close

Here are the top voting issues:




 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
PhD Guide
5  Jeremy Retired in NC    4 weeks ago

Pedo Joe is merely trying to get the MAMA crowd moving using catch phrases (most of which I don't think he understands). 

The problem is, the damage has already been done by his administration.  Most of it can be traced back to 20 January 2021 when Brandon sat down with a stack of EO's to sign. This was the first indication that this administration had no intent of doing right by the people.  They had an agenda and would do what ever was necessary to see it through.  That's how countries like North Korea and Venezuela work.  Not the US.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
5.1  seeder  Vic Eldred  replied to  Jeremy Retired in NC @5    4 weeks ago

It has been a terrible 18 months. They think Americans will vote on trivia instead.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
5.1.1  JohnRussell  replied to  Vic Eldred @5.1    4 weeks ago

Neither abortion or the MAGA/Trump threat to democracy is even close to being "trivial". 

At least one recent poll had abortion as the number one issue for the midterms. 

Keep deluding yourself though, it is amusing. 

 
 
 
Snuffy
Masters Guide
5.2  Snuffy  replied to  Jeremy Retired in NC @5    4 weeks ago
Most of it can be traced back to 20 January 2021 when Brandon sat down with a stack of EO's to sign.

One could almost say he was trying to out-trump Trump.  Trump came into office to undo everything he could that Obama had set up and in his first 100 days he signed 39 Executive Orders and memorandums.  Biden in his first 100 days signed 52 Executive Orders and memorandums, a lot of them to reverse what Trump had set.  One could say how "Trumpian" President Biden has been.  

 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
PhD Guide
5.2.1  Jeremy Retired in NC  replied to  Snuffy @5.2    4 weeks ago
One could say how "Trumpian" President Biden has been. 

It has been said that people emulate their heroes.  

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Expert
5.2.2  Sean Treacy  replied to  Snuffy @5.2    4 weeks ago
  One could say how "Trumpian" President Biden has been.  

 The most die hard "trump is the worst person in history" people are now enthusiastically  embracing norm assaulting measures that go far beyond what Trump ever attempted. 

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
6  seeder  Vic Eldred    4 weeks ago

Did we ever find out what a "Semi-fascist" was?

 
 
 
Hallux
Junior Principal
6.1  Hallux  replied to  Vic Eldred @6    4 weeks ago

Start with an apologist for the real thing, the rest should be easy enough. 

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
6.2  Texan1211  replied to  Vic Eldred @6    4 weeks ago
Did we ever find out what a "Semi-fascist" was?

Some folks use many terms they don't know the meaning of.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Participates
6.3  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Vic Eldred @6    4 weeks ago
Did we ever find out what a "Semi-fascist" was?

It's a right wing conservative pretending to have a backbone... see 'semi-flaccid'...

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
6.3.1  Texan1211  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @6.3    4 weeks ago

Why do so many liberals use words that can't even define?

Do they think it makes them look smarter?

It does not.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Expert
7  Sean Treacy    4 weeks ago

As Newsweek's opinion editor said about the administration's latest attack on voters: " Unfathomably reckless rhetoric...…until you realize that the malice and cruelty is the entire point.”

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
8  JohnRussell    4 weeks ago

For decades conservatives have been calling simple compassion and empathy and the understanding that a capitalist economy is inherently exploitative and thus requires government to supplement it with social programs , "socialism". 

Biden is hardly a socialist, he is an institutionalist, in this case the institutions being the way things were done as he was coming up. Unions, fair play, giving one another a leg up, etc. 

I also had to laugh at the articles obvious if puzzling conflating the fighting of climate change with socialism. For some of these Wall St Journal types, anything that doesnt bow down before Wall St hedge fund operators and wizards is socialism. 

 
 
 
Thomas
Sophomore Guide
9  Thomas    4 weeks ago
Biden's Choice: Semi-Fascism Or American Socialism

And the presentation of false dichotomies is under way.

 
 

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