Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.) has been hailed as a "progressive hero" by Democracy for America, the political action committee founded by former Vermont Governor Howard Dean. Yet he has something in common with some of the Tea Party heroes on the Republican Right. Grayson (shown in photo) and his conservative colleagues agree socialism is on the rise in America. The difference is Grayson welcomes it.
"Stealth socialism's been created," Grayson, a second-term congressman from Florida's Ninth District, said in an interview with salon.com on a range of political and economic issues. "We've had a government takeover of the bond market," he said in describing what has happened since the financial industry crisis of 2008. He continued,
Government simply ends up owning more and more and more. If government had taken over the steel industry, maybe it would have been more noticeable. They've taken over the financing of housing industry as well, with a desired result. The result is now, finally, particularly in areas that were hard-hit, like mine in Central Florida, housing is ticking up again. So the Fed did in essence create an economic baseline that has led to something along the lines of 50,000-100,000 jobs created a month, setting a foundation for recovery for the U.S. economy.
Grayson is far from alone in noting the socialist trends in federal economic policy. In February 2009, less than a month after the inauguration of Barack Obama, Newsweek magazine published a cover story with the title "We Are All Socialists Now." The article was about the new president's bailout and economic recovery plans, but noted "the U.S. government has already — under a conservative Republican administration — effectively nationalized the banking and mortgage industries." Even the late Marxist President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela hailed the federal takeover of a number of U.S. financial institutions, taunting President George W. Bush with the jibe that Bush had become a bigger socialist than Chavez himself.
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