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Dem Primaries a Microcosm of Socialist Thinking

May 12, 2008

As I write this, Democrats in the states of Indiana and North Carolina are poised to express their preferences in the ongoing primary slugfest between U.S. Senators Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Hussein Obama. Which of them wins is of little importance. What counts, as with all things liberal, is fairness.

A generation ago, Democrats decided that fairness outweighed the need for an orderly process that actually produced a viable candidate for President of the United States. Following the 1968 debacle in Chicago, the party rigged the system so that never again would their bigwigs be denied a voice in the presidential nominating convention.

By 1984, the Democrats had come up with the ridiculous nominating process we see in action this year. It included the "super-delegates" we have heard so much about, unelected delegations consisting of senators, congressmen, governors and other party officials who are guaranteed a seat at the table whether they deserve it or not.

Additionally, in the name of fairness, the party has continued to encumber itself with a set of rules that prevents two equally popular candidates like Clinton and Obama from ever truly winning a primary. In Democrat primaries, there are no winner-take-all elections. This creates a situation where a candidate can win what would, under any other circumstances, be considered a landslide (say, 60-40) and walk away with very few more delegates than the loser.

This arcane system is a microcosm of socialist thinking. In the eternal utopia of the liberal mind, no one should really win or lose. No one should have more than anyone else. Everything should be equally distributed. In fact, equality of opportunity means nothing, while equality of result means everything. Anyone who gets ahead must be penalized. As in their primary elections, no matter how hard you work, no matter how much you prosper, no matter how diligently you plan, you will never get beyond a certain point. To allow you to do so would be unfair.

It is the reason why, in a recent debate, when asked about the capital gains tax, Barack Obama made the stunning confession that he didn't care that raising the tax would actually decrease revenues to the federal government. For him, it is about fairness. He said that!

Similarly, Hillary Clinton is touting a "windfall profits tax" on oil companies to "pay for" the gas tax holiday she wants to give us this summer. It's all about fairness. The oil companies are prospering so they must be punished. Never mind that corporations don't pay taxes; people pay taxes. Oil companies, like all corporations, will simply pass on any tax on their "windfall profits" to all of us at the pump. And when they do, Democrats will be right there to pounce on their "greed." Nothing will be said about government greed.

Both Clinton and Obama want to force you to pay for your neighbor's health care when you can barely afford to pay for your own, even as they try to convince you that it's free for everyone.

This is socialism, pure and simple. Democrats can dress it up and call it anything they want, but we have seen it in action time and again all over the world. The former Soviet Union achieved total equality - meaning that everyone was equally miserable. It doesn't take much of a five-year plan to have an entire country standing in line for a dried-out potato and a stale loaf of bread.

So the next time you hear Clinton or Obama or any other Democrat talk about making the rich "pay their fair share," ask yourself how it benefits you to have the job creators of our society punished for their prosperity. Ask yourself how stifling the growth of our economy helps your lot in life. And ask yourself how a party that is more interested in equality and fairness than in freedom and opportunity can ever lead this country anywhere but onto the ash heap of history.

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Copyright ©2008 Doug Patton

Doug Patton describes himself as a recovering political speechwriter who agrees with himself more often than not. His weekly columns are syndicated by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate. Readers are encouraged to email him at dpatton@cagle.comand/or to follow him on Twitter at @Doug_Patton.