Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter 2 Share on Facebook 2 Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend 1 (5 Shares)  

Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites (# of views)   14 comments
OpEdNews Op Eds

The Choice in 2012: Social Darwinism or a Decent Society

By       Message Robert B. Reich     Permalink
      (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

Supported 3   Must Read 2   Well Said 2  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H2 4/5/12

Author 47089
Become a Fan
  (120 fans)

The returns aren't all in yet on today's Republican primaries but President Obama didn't wait. He kicked off his 2012 campaign against Mitt Romney with a hard-hitting speech centered on the House Republicans' budget plan -- which Romney has enthusiastically endorsed.

That plan, by the way, is the most radical reverse-Robin Hood proposal propounded by any political party in modern America. It would save millionaires at least $150,000 a year in taxes while gutting Medicaid, Medicare, Food Stamps, transportation, child nutrition, college aid, and almost everything else average and lower-income Americans depend on.

Here's what the President had to say about it:

"Disguised as a deficit reduction...it is really an attempt to impose a radical vision on our country. It is thinly veiled social Darwinism."

We are likely to hear a lot more about social Darwinism in the months ahead. It was the conservative creed during the late 19th century -- legitimizing a politics in which the lackeys of robber barons deposited sacks of money on legislators' desks, and justifying an economy in which sweat shops were common, urban slums festered, and a significant portion of America was impoverished.

Social Darwinism encapsulated the idea of survival of the fittest (a phrase Charles Darwin never actually used) as applied to societies as a whole. Its chief apostle in America was Yale Professor William Graham Sumner.

Here's what Sumner had to say in his social-Darwinian classic "What Social Classes Owe to Each Other" (1883):

"Let it be understood that we cannot go outside of this alternative: Liberty, inequality, survival of the fittest; not-liberty, equality, survival of the unfittest. The former carries society forward and favors all its best members; the latter carries society downwards and favors all its worst members."

Could there be a better summary of what today's regressive Republicans believe?

 

- Advertisement -

Supported 3   Must Read 2   Well Said 2  
View Ratings | Rate It

http://robertreich.org/

Robert Reich, former U.S. Secretary of Labor and Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley, has a new film, "Inequality for All," to be released September 27. He blogs at www.robertreich.org.


Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon



Go To Commenting
/* The Petition Site */
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

The Republican's Big Lies About Jobs (And Why Obama Must Repudiate Them)

Paul Ryan Still Doesn't Get It

What Mitt Romney Really Represents

What to Do About Disloyal Corporations

The Gas Wars

The Minimum Wage, Guns, Healthcare, and the Meaning of a Decent Society