Liz Peek: Socialism vs. the American way of life will be on the 2020 ballot

The 2020 election will be the most important of our lifetime.

You hear that from politicians every two years; this time it’s true.

The American way of life is going to be on the ballot in 2020. Our free enterprise system, our individual liberties and the universal opportunity offered by this great country are under attack. A wrong choice in the next election could set this nation on a road from which there will be no turning back.

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The 2020 presidential campaign will likely pit a progressive Democrat like Bernie Sanders or Kamala Harris against President Donald Trump. The field of candidates includes a couple of self-described “moderates” like Sherrod Brown, and it may yet be that Joe Biden or Michael Bloomberg jumps in to save the Democrat party from itself.

At the moment, though, the energy is on the Far Left, courtesy of Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and her millions of Twitter followers.

AOC, as she is called, has terrorized her Democrat colleagues into embracing one policy after another that would destroy our capitalist economy. The Green New Deal, which requires legislators to dictate not only how our energy industries operate but also what kinds of jobs Americans may hold and what their homes will look like, may seem crazy and reckless to most of us, but it has attracted  the support of 11 co-sponsors in the Senate and 89 in the House. All six Democratic senators running for president have signed on. They apparently don’t think it’s crazy at all.

Medicare-for-all, also gathering support, is nearly as frightening. Backers are either willfully ignoring the well-publicized shortcomings of similar systems in the UK or Canada, or they are too lazy to have done their homework. I suspect both are true.

Representative Pramila Jayapal from Washington, a co-sponsor of Medicare-for-all, recently defended the proposal on NPR, saying that rolling it out in two years wasn’t a challenge because, after all, Social Security was introduced in a similar time frame. (Actually, it was not. FDR signed the bill in 1935, taxes were instituted in 1937 and the first checks went out in 1940.)

Really. This woman, who supposedly has the chops to serve in Congress, thinks that initiating a program to send checks to the elderly is roughly as complex as a program that kills off the $1 trillion health insurance industry, puts the 600,000 workers in that field out of work, ends all employer-sponsored insurance programs and therefore many, many labor contracts, puts the feds in charge of prioritizing and vetting our health care providers, and sets up the requisite watchdog operation necessary to oversee the vast funds that would flow under the mandate.

Is it possible she is that misinformed?

Are voters that stupid?

In 2020, Trump will face off against someone who wants to toss our progress down the drain and forever change the nature of this exceptional nation.

Will this country turn its back on an economic system that has created more wealth and provided more opportunity for millions to improve their lives in favor of a socialist utopia that has never, ever succeeded elsewhere? Will they break from our free enterprise system at a time when every person who wants a job can find one, when real wages are finally moving higher, when Americans are optimistic about their futures? This is the moment Democrats choose to try to force socialism down our throats? How can that be?

You can thank President Obama.

Obama ignored the working men and women of this country.

After the financial crisis, Obama did not prioritize putting people back to work. He focused on ObamaCare, climate change and on winning the Hispanic vote. He surrounded himself with people like Larry Summers who, to this day, derides our economic potential. Summers’ judgement that the U.S. had entered a prolonged period of “secular stagnation” convinced the Obama White House that boosting our manufacturing industries or unshackling small businesses was pointless.

As a result, the economy stuttered forward and wages were stuck. Disgruntled workers saw investors reaping the rewards of globalization while their own fortunes steadily declined.

Some of those workers elected President Trump, who promised to revive American industry and has kept that promise. Others bought into Bernie Sanders’ politics of envy, believing that successful Americans are profiting from a rigged system that only favors the rich.

The former group will vote to support our way of life; as success stories pile up, we have to hope that the latter group will also vote against the socialist solution.

The Wall Street Journal reported recently on Cassandra Eaton, a young single mom in Mississippi who was earning the minimum wage of $8.25 per hour until a local shipyard undertook to train her as a welder. Her pay has jumped to nearly $20 and when she’s finished her internship she’ll be making $27 per hour. That’s life-changing.

The Journal also told the story of James Wilson, a high-school drop-out who went to prison for selling drugs. Wilson, released in 2013, got help and training from Goodwill, which led to a job as a fork-lift operator in Indianapolis. Wilson has a house and a Cadillac; his life, too, has changed forever.

There are millions of stories like these, which remind us that the best welfare program truly is a good job.

President Trump is a political neophyte, and as such he gets into trouble. But for the same reason, he challenges everything. He asks why we allow China to cheat and steal, why U.S. exporters to Europe are treated unfairly and why we can’t use our energy bounty to move the needle in the Middle East.

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He asks, most importantly, what we can do for our workers and how we can grow our economy.

In 2020, he will face off against someone who wants to toss our progress down the drain and forever change the nature of this exceptional nation. We cannot and must not let that happen.

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