I normally discount most of the ranting of the WorldNetDaily/Alex Jones/Lew Rockwell set because I’ve always thought that they were the right’s version of the boy who cried wolf but this post at lewrockwell.com by Gordon T. Long hits uncomfortably close to the mark:
In The Road to Serfdom, F.A. Hayek showed how governments, supported by a collectivist mindset, always tend towards totalitarianism. Even the most libertarian government thus far created, the government of the United States, has slipped incrementally towards totalitarianism over the past two centuries. This is because it is an inherent trait of a government.
The degree of socialism in the United States increased substantially after the establishment of the Federal Reserve System (1913) and the measures taken during the Great Depression (1929-46) which it created. Ever since the early 1900′s the United States has had a two-party system dominated by ‘socialists’. The Republican Party has always advocated conservative socialism. The Democratic Party, which in the 19th century favored libertarianism, advocates social-democratic socialism. So long as people are divided by Left and Right, Democratic and Republican, the US is prone to being influenced by factions who transcend party politics and from behind the scenes could possible exert strong control over the United States. They could do this by maintaining power over public opinion and hence over the course of government. Steadily, the United States has been travelling down the road to totalitarianism, and many people have not noticed, possibly because they are only looking at the position on the Left-Right paradigm.
Upon further analysis, it is clear that Left, Right and Centre, are all forms of socialism. In particular, we may call them “social-democratic socialism” (the Left) and “conservative socialism” (the Right). They are both socialism because they both share the principle that the government should “run” and “mold” society, by using legal force and intervention to transfer property and personal wealth as part of the political scientists’ process of ‘redistribution of wealth’.
The differences are only in the particular ways the government should run society – the methods it should use, and who, exactly, should be the recipients of government wealth transfers and who should pay. In particular:
Social democrats tend to prefer heavy taxation, large wealth transfers to the poor, and nationalized industries, and oppose price controls, regulations and behavioral controls.
Conservatives tend to prefer lower taxation, a smaller welfare state, regulated (cartelized) industries, price controls, product and behavioral controls.
Since these are points that have a rational basis and are gaining popular support – and almost all contributors here have made or validated – I have to consider the possibility that the wolf is at the door.