ISSN 2330-717X

Coronavirus Exploited To Promote Socialism – OpEd

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Those who truly care about the poor, such as Mother Teresa, have always had some skin in the game. In her case, it was more than a little: she gave her life to the dispossessed. She risked her own well-being caring for lepers; she carried the sick up flights of stairs; she founded hospitals; and she tended to the dying. By contrast, left-wing champions of the poor never lift a finger. They simply agitate.

It’s worse than this. The average American has no idea just how left-wing radicals operate. Their goal is not to help the poor: it is to destroy our market economy in the name of championing their cause. The economy they seek to plunder is the same system that has made the lifestyle of the poor in the United States the envy of middle class peoples—never mind the poor—throughout much of the world. For left-wing activists, coronavirus is a gift: they can exploit it to promote socialism.

Chris Tomlinson wrote a piece in the March 22 edition of the Houston Chronicle arguing that government programs implemented to rescue the economy “means COVID-19 will introduce democratic socialism to the United States.” He did not write out of dismay; he was delighted.

Two days later, the website socialistrevolution introduced “A Socialist Program to Fight COVID-19 and the Economic Crisis.” It called for (a) doubling the wages of essential workers and quadrupling their ranks with new hires (b) socialized health care (c) price controls (d) a moratorium on utilities, rent, mortgage payments, and evictions (e) an end to the two party system (f) a complete write-off of all debts incurred by working people, and (g) a national minimum wage of $1,000 per week.

If anyone thinks that this is just the meanderings of economic illiterates, consider what the “Squad” congressional members have been saying. 
Rep. Rashida Tlaib recently announced that “corporate greed is the disease in our country alongside what is happening with coronavirus.” She saw something to exploit. “This is our moment” she said, echoing  Rahm Emanuel’s famous quip, “you never want a serious crisis to go to waste.” 

With fewer drivers on the road, the declining demand for gas has rocked the stock market; the price of oil has plummeted. This brought a smile to the face of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who tweeted, “You absolutely love to see it.” 

Rep. Ilhan Omar introduced a bill to cancel rent and mortgage payments during the pandemic. What about payments already made? They will be reimbursed, she said.

The “Squad” is on the hunt, looking to take advantage of this crisis by driving the economy to collapse. Why would they want to do that? To force the country to adopt socialism. This is not a novel idea.

In 1966, two Columbia University professors wrote an article for the Nation, a far-left magazine, imploring social workers and administrators to find every person in New York City who might even remotely qualify for welfare and sign him up immediately. Their goal—they were quite explicit about it—was to force the city to go bankrupt. That way the federal government would have no other choice but to step in and institute socialism.

The strategy worked, at least in part. Welfare rolls spiked, and New York City almost went bankrupt, but socialism never materialized. It did succeed, perversely, in devastating the poor. 

The mayor, John Lindsay, accepted the reforms as outlined by the professors: every person who applied for welfare was put on the rolls, and none was required to provide evidence of his economic status. 

Predictably, welfare recipients rose from 531,000 to 1,165,000 in a few years. This happened at a time when poverty was declining and unemployment was low. The truth is that welfare rolls expanded not because of economic conditions—they ballooned for purely political reasons.

David Horowitz was a radical activist during this period (fortunately, he has been on our side for decades), and he recalls how the left approaches crisis situations: “the worse the better.” In other words, make conditions worse, forcing revolutionary changes. 

That is what the left is doing now—they want to make matters worse so they can force socialism down our throats. They are the polar opposite of Mother Teresa. They are not only a threat to working Americans, they are an absolute menace to the poor.

William Donohue

William Donohue

William Donohue is the current president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights in the United States, and has held that position since 1993.

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