Back in 2012, at a town hall meeting in Jensen Beach, a very kind and concerned lady asked me if I believed there were socialists in Washington DC, in Congress. Y’all know what happened then. I made reference to the Congressional Progressive Caucus and its 75-80 members at the time, and explained that they are basically communists. It was not intended to be any sort of insult, but just a realization and admittance of their philosophy, principles, and values. Well, the left went into a full apoplectic meltdown . . . . and this was pre-Trump! However, the issue was not about what I said being true or not, it was about their anger that it was said.
Perhaps I was a tad bit before my time, but my courage, and convictions, are not based upon political correctness, nor social accommodation. It was apparent that the Republicans were afraid to say such. I remember when Mitt Romney was being interviewed by Bill O’Reilly, and asked if he would classify Barack Obama as a socialist. Romney quickly pivoted away, showing his discomfort, and saying that he did not want to get into labels. Romney should have fully admitted that, when it came to a philosophy of governance Barack Obama, and the Democrat party, were more closely aligned with socialism than any other principles.
The progressive socialist left in 2012 made me their number one target. Why? Because I knew who they were, and was not afraid to say so. The great thing happening now is that the left is no longer hiding who they are. As a matter of fact, they are fully embracing it. They have indeed made it easy for voters to decide what they want America to be. I remember the Newsweek cover story that ran on February 12, 2009, proclaiming “We Are all Socialists Now.” President Obama had been in office just two weeks. Two weeks later, he would sign into law the massive Stimulus Bill. Why was it that Newsweek could make this assertion in 2009, and no one blinked? I made my statement in 2012 and they went nuts. Why? Why was it that after Barack Obama said, “if you own a business, you didn’t build that,” defining the left based upon their own philosophy that incurred such wrath? It was because they were not ready to come out of the closet . . . yet. However, we now know exactly who they are.
As reported by AP News:
“A week ago, Maine Democrat Zak Ringelstein wasn’t quite ready to consider himself a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, even if he appreciated the organization’s values and endorsement in his bid to become a U.S. senator. Three days later, he told The Associated Press it was time to join up. He’s now the only major-party Senate candidate in the nation to be a dues-paying democratic socialist. Ringelstein’s leap is the latest evidence of a nationwide surge in the strength and popularity of an organization that, until recently, operated on the fringes of the liberal movement’s farthest left flank.
As Donald Trump’s presidency stretches into its second year, democratic socialism has become a significant force in Democratic politics. Its rise comes as Democrats debate whether moving too far left will turn off voters. “I stand with the democratic socialists, and I have decided to become a dues-paying member,” Ringelstein told AP. “It’s time to do what’s right, even if it’s not easy.” There are 42 people running for offices at the federal, state and local levels this year with the formal endorsement of the Democratic Socialists of America, the organization says. They span 20 states, including Florida, Hawaii, Kansas and Michigan.
The most ambitious Democrats in Washington have been reluctant to embrace the label, even as they embrace the policies defining modern-day democratic socialism: Medicare for all, a $15 minimum wage, free college tuition and the abolition of the federal department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, also known as ICE. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Congress’ only self-identified democratic socialist, campaigned Friday with the movement’s newest star, New York City congressional candidate Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, a 28-year-old former bartender who defeated one of the most powerful House Democrats last month. Her victory fed a flame that was already beginning to burn brighter. The DSA’s paid membership has hovered around 6,000 in the years before Trump’s election, said Allie Cohn, a member of the group’s national political team. Last week, its paid membership hit 45,000 nationwide. There is little distinction made between the terms “democratic socialism” and “socialism” in the group’s literature.
While Ringelstein and other DSA-backed candidates promote a “big-tent” philosophy, the group’s constitution describes its members as socialists who “reject an economic order based on private profit” and “share a vision of a humane social order based on popular control of resources and production, economic planning, equitable distribution, feminism, racial equality and non-oppressive relationships.” Members during public meetings often refer to each other “comrades,” wear clothing featuring socialist symbols like the rose and promote authors such as Karl Marx.”
They are out of the closet fully now, and present a serious dilemma for the establishment Democratic Party. Early on we can see that those opining on running for president in 2020 are embracing the socialist philosophy. Let me remind everyone the words of “comrade” Vladimir Lenin, “the goal of socialism is communism,” so I applaud the Democrat Socialists of America for having the courage of their convictions to come into the light.
But, we, as Americans, should be very concerned that we are now seeing the fruits of the labor of the left in overtaking our system of education and turning it into a system of indoctrination. We have seen the left completely dominate the area of journalism, beginning on our college campuses, and extending into a media leftism that is an impactful “fourth estate.” We are witnessing these mass protests that advocate the utter undermining of our Constitutional Republic, all for the progressive socialist agenda.
I must admit, I find it rather perplexing that the philosophy of governance that defined the enemy — for which I stood against on freedom’s rampart — is now fully embedded in my own country. I remember transiting through Checkpoint Charlie from West Berlin to East Berlin, from liberty to tyranny, and realizing my purpose, and why I never wanted to see this thrive. But more so, I was highly committed to seeing that tyranny was destroyed. And, so it was when the wall came down, as a brave and courageous American president, Ronald Reagan, had demanded — that was courage of conviction. When Reagan referred to the Soviet Union as the evil empire, he admitted that he knew who the enemy was, and he was not afraid to confront, and engage them.Click To Tweet
When we sit back and see the rise of “Democratic Socialism” in America, it is because we have been reticent, recalcitrant, in confronting, and engaging it from a position of intellectual advantage. After all, why would this land of freedom and opportunity adopt a governing philosophy of tyranny, and the premise of equality of outcomes? Ask yourselves: what part of the DSA constitution resembles anything in accordance with our American Constitution? These words should chill the spine of any true American, “While Ringelstein and other DSA-backed candidates promote a “big-tent” philosophy, the group’s constitution describes its members as socialists who “reject an economic order based on private profit” and “share a vision of a humane social order based on popular control of resources and production, economic planning, equitable distribution, feminism, racial equality and non-oppressive relationships.”
They reject an economic order based upon private profit. So, Whiskey-Tango-Foxtrot? These folks want us to work for what? A shared vision of humane social order based on popular control of resources and production? That means government control of our economic production, which makes sense, right? After all, we will not be working for private profit — we will be economic slaves, and dependent. If you are a student of history, you know that there is nothing “humane” about socialism; just ask the folks in Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua who are being gunned down, imprisoned, oppressed because they wish to be free. Centralized economic planning, equitable distribution . . . who decides what an equitable distribution is?
Yep, socialism is all about taking away your stuff, and giving it to others. This is the seminal choice we face now in America: equality of opportunity, or equality of outcomes. Funny, back in 2012, when I was saying that, there were South Florida media outlets that were confused. They shouldn’t be confused any more.
It is time for Old School Patriots to rise up. When your children come home spewing this nonsense, you gotta have that talk. When their friends come into your house with a Che Guevara shirt, or some other symbol of Marxist/Socialist/Communist/Progressive thought, stop them, and tell them where freedom exists, and that tyranny is not allowed. Start writing editorials in your local paper. Go to PTA conferences, and engage with teachers who are not teaching, but are, rather, indoctrinating your child. Don’t back away from supposed “friends” who declare that they are socialists. Ask them where that has been successful, without killing lots of its citizens?
They are out of the closet, and I am glad. I do not wish them to go back into the close. I seek to render progressive socialism in America as irrelevant, idiotic rantings. I want to defeat this cancer that has fully metastasized in this great land. So many have fled other lands where socialism reigned, the last thing they want is to see it thrive here, in their new, legally adopted, home.
Ya know, the lady in Jensen Beach, who asked me that question back in 2012, came up afterwards and apologized. She felt bad, as if she had gotten me in trouble. I will never forget telling her a simple maxim, “you do not get flak unless you are over the target.” Kinda like my dad, ol’ Buck West would say, “Boy, a hit dog will holler.” I am glad that I made the left holler, and still do. My country is more important than a title of Congressman. I could say, I told ya so, but that’s not me.
What is important is that we are not all socialists now . . . but we now know who the socialists are!
During his 22 year career in the United States Army, Lieutenant Colonel West served in several combat zones and received many honors including a Bronze Star, three Meritorious Service Medals, three Army Commendation Medals, one with Valor device, and a Valorous Unit Award.
In November of 2010, Allen was elected to the United States Congress, representing Florida’s 22nd District.
He is a Fox News Contributor, Director of the Booker T. Washington Initiative at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, Senior Fellow at the Media Research Center, contributing columnist for Townhall.com, and author of Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Family, Faith and Freedom. His forthcoming book, Hold Texas, Hold the Nation: Victory or Death, is due fall 2018 from Brown Books Publishing Group.