Hillary Clinton: Part socialist, part crony capitalist
By: PAUL BREMMER
Is Hillary Clinton a socialist? Lou Dobbs seems to think so. During the Fox Business Network's Thursday night coverage of the Democratic National Convention, the popular host remarked Clinton's acceptance speech gave off socialist vibes.
"From that little girl to now, somehow along the way she became as close to a socialist as I could ever possibly imagined," Dobbs said. "I gotta believe there are CEOs and shareholders by the millions across the country who are wondering, 'Oh my gosh, they're going after my company!'"
But William Murray, chairman of the Religious Freedom Coalition, sees the Democratic nominee as more of a hybrid.
Murray, who chronicled the history of central planning in his book "Utopian Road to Hell: Enslaving America and the World with Central Planning," asserted big corporations have nothing to fear from a Hillary presidency, but small businesses will get crushed by her.
"She is a socialist, yes, but she's also a crony capitalist," he said. "She will help Wall Street, she will help the big defense contractors, and she will do this all at the expense of real competition and the little man. If we take a look at China, we take a look at the big socialist countries in Europe like France, they utilize the big corporations in order to achieve their socialist agenda."
Murray explained modern socialism has adjusted itself as socialists realized they needed money to implement their many grand plans. They have embraced free enterprise to a certain extent - specifically, they have embraced big corporations from whom they can extract large sums of money. They have no need of small businesses, according to Murray.
"Hillary's just going to be the same as Obama, which is blackmailing those big corporations and letting them pay off and then allowing them to operate, squash the little guys," Murray predicted. "We're in for a lot of the combination of socialism and crony capitalism over the next four to eight years if she wins."
Nima Sanandaji, president of the think tank European Centre for Entrepreneurship and Policy Reform, echoed Murray's point that present-day socialists are moving away from pure socialism. In his brand new book "Debunking Utopia: Exposing the Myth of Nordic Socialism," Sanandaji writes that pure socialism has failed essentially everywhere it has been tried around the world, leading political and economic thinkers to tweak the system.
"A less radical idea that is gaining ground is social democracy," according to Sanandaji. "Contrary to socialism, social democracy isn't meant to be introduced through an authoritarian system where one party monopolizes power. It is to be combined with democracy and also the free market. In social democracy government takes control of some, but not all, parts of the economy within the frame of a democratic system. Services such as education, health care, and elderly care are provided through public monopolies, and funded by tax money."
The five Nordic nations - Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark and Iceland - have embraced social democratic policies. Although they are all relatively prosperous societies, Sanandaji writes that they are all experiencing problems that have disillusioned the Nordic peoples.
"The welfare states of the north are dealing with challenges stemming from the long-term effects of high taxes, generous benefits, and public-sector monopolies," Sanadaji revealed. "From Spain to the Baltics, Latin America and the United States, leftist ideologues hedge much of their political beliefs on the success of Nordic social democracy. In the Nordics themselves, this ideal image of democratic socialism has lost its shimmer."
One "leftist ideologue" in the United States who has pointed to the Nordic states as shining examples of prosperity is Bernie Sanders, the self-proclaimed "democratic socialist" who gave Hillary Clinton a serious run for the Democratic presidential nomination this year.
Murray, for his part, considers Sanders a pure socialist and rejects the whole concept of "democratic socialism."
"There really is no such thing as democratic socialism in the end," Murray insisted. "Socialism, by its very definition, requires the end of individual liberty. Free enterprise is the cradle of individual liberty, because it allows individuals to have the funds to do what they want to do themselves. Socialism restricts individual liberty by having an individual's activities function jointly with others, according to what the state wants them to do."
Murray believes Sanders pulled Hillary Clinton to the left, forcing her to spew a lot of socialist rhetoric. In her Thursday night acceptance speech, for instance, she complained in America "there's too much inequality, too little social mobility."
She railed against "executive bonuses" and voiced her belief in universal health care and tuition-free college.
After laying out a laundry list of spending proposals, she said, "Now, here's the thing: we're not only going to make all these investments, we're going to pay for every single one of them. And here's how: Wall Street, corporations, and the super-rich are going to start paying their fair share of taxes."
Murray acknowledged Hillary has to use this type of rhetoric to improve her chances of getting elected. However, underneath it all, she may still be the crony capitalist Sanders supporters believe she is.
"I expect Hillary Clinton to take huge amounts of money from Wall Street and to promise them that whatever rhetoric she uses to be elected, they can forget that she ever said it," Murray stated. "However, we can never be able to tell who she is lying to, whether she is lying to the people or whether she is lying to Wall Street in order to get the money, because she is a serial liar, so there's no way to tell.
"My guess is that she wants the same type of combination of socialism and crony capitalism that has strangled the French economy for the last several decades."
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