Obakrat je seveda treba pojem socializma v naslovu jemati v narekovajih, ker pač ne ustrezati tradicionalni opredelitvi socializma. Trump pač z nizkimi davki in opuščanjem regulacije omogoča še večjo koncentracijo dohodkov in donosov v rokah korporacij in peščice zelo bogatih posameznikov (v stilu koncentracije koristi v rokah elite v nekdanjih komunističnih državah). Sanders pa želi s socialdemokratskimi ukrepi (zastonj college za vse, univerzalno zdravstveno varstvo za vse, zeleni podnebni program itd.) omogočiti bolj enake možnosti za vse Američane ter se bojevati proti podnebnim spremembam.
Je pa lepo videti, da tudi psovka “socialist” ne more več zaustaviti napredovanja progresivnih idej proti vrhu ameriške politike. Progresivnih idej, ki lahko milijonom družin njihova življenja in prihodnost njihovih otrok spremenijo na bolje.
Sanders’s victory tonight in the New Hampshire primary, combined with his strong finish last week in Iowa and a bounce in national polling, places him firmly at the top of the Democratic field as the nomination race heads to Nevada and South Carolina.
But the significance of Sanders’s standing in the race goes far beyond the next round of primaries. In the modern history of American politics, no candidate so firmly planted on the left has been so well positioned to capture the nomination of the Democratic Party. Sanders has won election after election in Vermont as an independent, regularly declining the label of the party he now seeks to lead. His rise to the top of a field filled with more mainstream candidates could point to an important shift in the electorate. In Iowa and New Hampshire, Sanders’s talk of revolution overtook Biden’s pleas for a return to normalcy in the age of Donald Trump, and with his platform representing a kind of untainted progressive purity, the oldest white candidate on the ballot prevailed—albeit narrowly—over a plethora of younger, more diverse options.
Yet none of the transformative policies Sanders has proposed—a Green New Deal, Medicare for All, and debt-free college the most notable among them—embody the change he represents as much as the label he proudly carries: democratic socialist. It’s a term Republicans have weaponized against liberals so frequently that most Democratic politicians simply reject the tag out of hand. Sanders does not, and his success frightens establishment Democrats who worry that the socialism label remains a potent pejorative among the swing voters they’ll need to defeat President Trump in key battlegrounds this fall. On the day after Iowa’s caucuses, Trump devoted an entire section of his State of the Union address to a warning against the advance of socialism, while Biden spent his final days in New Hampshire cautioning that Sanders’s “democratic socialist” label would bring down Democrats running alongside him on November’s ballot.
Neither attack worked, and to Sanders’s supporters, his surge to the top is evidence that socialism as an epithet has lost its sting. “If you look at the history of this country and the left, there have been times when our ideas have been popular and millions of working people have stood up for them,” Maria Svart, the national director of the Sanders-backing Democratic Socialists of America, told me. “And I think the time is coming again for us to do that.
“The socialist bogeyman idea,” she continued, “has been used for decades to prevent people from bringing up alternative ideas, and Bernie winning validates our ideas and demonstrates that people, especially young people, are willing to confront capitalism.”
The recent evidence for whether Sanders’s identity as a democratic socialist would hurt him in a general-election matchup with Trump is mixed. He fared no worse against the president when pollsters identified him as a socialist in a survey conducted by the progressive group Data for Progress. But socialism remained broadly unpopular in a poll released last month by NBC News and The Wall Street Journal: Just 19 percent of respondents said they had a positive view of socialism, compared with 52 percent who held a negative view. That was roughly the inverse of how people in the poll felt about capitalism.
Rather than renounce the term, he has sought in both of his presidential campaigns to define it as part of a “quintessentially American” tradition, a descendant of mainstream liberals such as Franklin D. Roosevelt, Lyndon B. Johnson, and Martin Luther King Jr. (who were also demonized by their opponents as socialists while they were alive). “We must recognize that in the 21st century, in the wealthiest country in the history of the world, economic rights are human rights,” Sanders said in a speech in June. “That is what I mean by democratic socialism.”
More recently, Sanders has argued that the U.S. is already “a socialist society” that redistributes national wealth to corporations through tax breaks and subsidies. “The difference between my socialism and Trump’s socialism is, I believe the government should help working families, not billionaires,” he said on Fox News Sunday.
Vir: Russell Berman, The Atlantic