Opinion: Trump stays tough on socialism

Tony Shaffer

President Trump’s speech Monday afternoon in Miami wasn’t just directed at Nicolas Maduro and the socialists of Venezuela — it was also a stark reminder to left-leaning Americans that socialism's days are "numbered."

President Donald Trump

“In Venezuela and across the western hemisphere, socialism is dying, and liberty, prosperity, and democracy are being reborn,” President Trump told the crowd.

While laying out the facts about the tragedies that socialist policies have created in Venezuela, President Trump also warned of the dangers of the neo-socialist agenda being pushed right here at home by prominent Democrats (or Social Democrats as they self-identify – a true distinction without a difference).

“Socialism by its very nature does not respect borders. It does not respect the boundaries or the sovereign rights of its citizens or its neighbors,” the President pointed out. “It’s always seeking to expand, to encroach, and subjugate others to its will.”

As Democrats rally around radical proposals such as "Medicare-for-all," free college tuition, enormous minimum wage increases, and even guaranteed basic income, it was President Trump’s responsibility to remind us that socialism’s sweeping promises are always empty.

"We know that socialism is not about justice, it's not about equality, it's not about lifting up the poor — it's about one thing only: power for the ruling class,” the President declared. “And, the more power they get, the more they crave … They want the power to decide who wins and who loses, who's up and who's down, what's true and what's false, and even who lives and who dies."

Much like he did during his State of the Union Address, when he vowed that “America will never be a socialist country,” the President once again condemned "the horrors of socialism and communism" and "massive wealth confiscation" that has ruined so many other countries.

President Trump’s appeal to freedom-loving people everywhere follows the tradition of our most outspoken champions of democracy in American history.

Let’s be clear as to what Socialism is – it is a system or arbitrary and often capricious control and redistribution of money and resources. It is anathema to the very concept of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” as declared in our Declaration of Independence. And it has failed everywhere it has been applied.

Instead of embracing and coddling socialist regimes — as Barack Obama did with the Castro regime in Cuba — President Trump is aggressively condemning the cancerous effects of socialist policies.

As self-admitted socialists such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders seek to undermine and demonize the free-market system, President Trump is countering their rhetoric with real-world examples of socialism’s catastrophic failures.

The collapse of Venezuela’s failed experiment with socialism couldn’t come at a worse time for Democrats, who are trying to retake the White House in 2020 by pushing for the same disastrous policies in the United States.

Just like his predecessor, Ronald Reagan, did when he confronted the evil Soviet Empire, Donald Trump is painting “not in pale pastels but bold colors” as he attacks socialism in all its forms, to ensure that in the next U.S. election, the whole concept of socialism and its devastating policies are orphaned for all of America’s future.

Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer is a retired senior intelligence operations officer and Acting President of the London Center for Policy Research.