If Barack Obama's a socialist, what's George W. Bush?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by walter4, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. Countdown To Crawford
    The Last Days Of The Bush Administration


    Today Republican John McCain dropped the word "socialism" from his attacks on Democrat Barack Obama, telling a crowd in St. Charles, Mo., only that his opponent wants to "spread the wealth around" but resisting the "S" word.

    He believes in redistributing wealth -- not in policies that grow our economy and create jobs and opportunities for all Americans. Sen. Obama is more interested in controlling who gets your piece of the pie than in growing the pie.

    Ditto the GOP's vice presidential candidate, Sarah Palin, who told a crowd in Colorado Springs, Colo., that Obama favors tax hikes to redistribute wealth. Sort of a reprise of the argument Obama heard from Joe the Plumber.

    Our opponent's plan is just more big government, and John and I think that that is the problem, not the solution. Instead of taking your hard-earned money and spreading your wealth, we want to spread opportunity so people like you and Joe the Plumber can create new wealth.

    Why the change in tone?

    First, Obama has been shredding the charge by reminding voters, in an incredulous tone of voice, that he has been endorsed by such Titans of the Establishment as Warren Buffett and Colin Powell.

    But the larger problem for the McCain-Palin ticket's attempt to tie Obama to socialism is ... George W. Bush.

    In the last four weeks, President Bush has proposed a $700-billion bailout of the financial sector, pressed his Treasury secretary to push equity into the system and met with key world leaders on how to regulate the global markets.

    "The fly in the ointment for this socialism argument is the recent bank bailout," Larry Sabato, who heads the University of Virginia's nonpartisan Center for Politics, told CNN. "That's probably the most egregious example of socialism in American history."

    As Countdown to Crawford noted in an earlier post, London's Telegraph captured this shift with its headline: "We're All Socialists Now, Comrade."

    On Sunday, Fox News' Chris Wallace asked McCain about whether he's as much a socialist as the rest of us. Here's their exchange.

    WALLACE: But, Senator, you voted for the $700-billion bailout that's being used partially to nationalize American banks. Isn't that socialism?

    MCCAIN: That is reacting to a crisis that's due to greed and excess in Washington. And what this administration is doing wrong, and what Paulson is doing wrong, is not going out and buying up home loan mortgages, home mortgages, and giving people new mortgages at the new value of their home so they can stay in their home. They're bailing out the banks. They're bailing out these institutions.

    WALLACE: But you voted for that.

    MCCAIN: Of course. It was a package that had to be enacted because the economy was about to go into the tank.... That's the reason why we have governments, to help those who need help, who can't help themselves, and when time of crisis to step in and do what's necessary to preserve the lives and futures of innocent people. It wasn't Main Street America that caused this. It was Washington and Wall Street.

    -- Johanna Neuman
  2. A fruitcake?