RUSH: Apple Valley, California. Hi, David. I’m glad you called. It’s great to have you here on the EIB Network.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. My question is this. I’m really, uh… I — I think I’ve decided to vote for Barack, and because of this, I don’t see a problem with — with socialism — socialism, the way I understand it, and I think the way I understand socialism — it might be wrong, but can there be a — could there possibly be a way to have a compassionate socialism-type system in America?
RUSH: By definition, socialism cannot be compassionate. It’s an illusion, but it cannot achieve it. It cannot achieve equality like it promises — unless everybody’s equally miserable.
RUSH: Now, it does not allow for individual achievement. That’s a problem. If you outpace somebody else, out-earn somebody else, then you have to be punished for that and that, of course, isn’t compassionate. There’s nothing about socialism that’s compassionate. It appears to be. It’s rooted in caring about all the ills and the inequities, inequalities and so forth that we see in society, but it never has fixed a thing. It’s never solved a problem, ’round the world. But it will make people who believe in socialism feel better about themselves, because it will make them think their lives have meaning and that they care and that they’re oriented toward having all these inequities and ills and societal problems fixed.
CALLER: So is national health care socialism in your opinion?
RUSH: Oh, absolutely. It’s a disaster, too. Look at anywhere they’ve got it. In Great Britain, it’s literally falling apart; Canada the same thing. It doesn’t work. You end up with the wealthy able to go buy their own health care somewhere else. Doctors opt out of the system, and make contracts with individuals who can afford their own health care. It doesn’t work. Services are not provided to people. There are waiting lines for, sometimes, essential surgeries in Great Britain. But the biggest problem with socialism, David — I don’t have a whole lot of time — is it robs individuals of their own identity, their own ambition, their own desires, and their own passions, and it robs them of their dreams because it doesn’t allow any of that.
CALLER: Well, because I’m just wondering, you know, I know that a lot — there’s a lot of things that we do for some people. Like you have to go to school until, I guess, what, 16 or 18 or truancy and that kind of thing. Is that socialism in your mind, too?
RUSH: No. The public education system in the country is… What’s bad about it is that the government running it has given it all kinds of problems. If it were privatized, and you still mandate that kids get an education, there’s nothing wrong with that. If it were privatized, people actually doing it to make a profit and they were measured against other schools by virtue of the performance of the students, rather than oriented toward protecting the teachers, whether they’re any good or not then you’d have a whole different education structure in this country but you could still mandate that kids go. You could pass whatever law you want. Socialism… Again, I’m going to have 45 seconds here. But socialism is basically the government involved inasmuch as possible or everything, and they are the final arbiter. They are the decision-maker. They tell you what you can and can’t do, when you can and can’t do it, what you can and can’t say; and what happens to you if you violate any of these rules. But beyond all that, it just saps entrepreneurism! It saps the creation of wealth. It eschews it. You try to have a functioning society without the creation of wealth. It cannot happen. It eschews the ownership of private property, limiting people’s use of their own property for a number of things. It’s a bad, bad deal out there, David. It’s very bad.