Do conservatives know what socialism is?

As we get closer to election day, wingnuts are increasingly obsessed with the idea that an Obama administration will turn the US into Denmark.

I cringe in horror at the thought.

Some loon screamed “socialist!” at Obama over the weekend, Sarah Palin called Obama’s tax proposals “socialist” and the Anchor Baby just compared progressive taxation with brutal African juntas.

What’s refreshing about this presidential campaign is that polls consistently show the tired old Republican slime attacks aren’t working. They can foam at the mouth all they want about how Obama is a terrorist-loving, Muslim-hugging, spread-that-money-around socialist, but the public, except for a few fringees on the Right, isn’t buying it.

In a normal year, this would merely be annoying — an expected barb to be tossed at any Democratic candidate from the right. But the Bush administration just nationalized our financial system. Is there a bigger socialist on the planet right now than George W. Bush?

Well, actually, Bush is not socialist at all. The bailout is temporary, the entire system was not nationalized, and the State doesn’t own it. In Marxism, the state owns the means of production. The US is nowhere near that. Neither is Denmark for that matter.

Real life Marxists and socialists are the ones who get most honked off by this confusion as to what socialism is. Here they’ve devoted years of their lives to spreading the message of Marxism and then some overgrown frat boy of a president is forced to prop up failing banks and the American public mistakenly goes and calls that socialism. It’s enough to make Lenin weep, I tell you.

They should use the financial crisis as a golden opportunity to organize among the actual masses, instead of just theorizing about doing so. But instead they will probably continue huddling in their enclaves pondering WWMD (What Would Marx Do) or perhaps engage in more pointless infighting over minute doctrinal details. Because it’s really, really important that everyone in the room agree down to the last nit on the National Question before they go out and organize the masses. (And you, dear reader, probably don’t even know what the National Question is. Which aptly demonstrates my point.)

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