t r u t h o u t | The Case for Socialism
Wednesday 26 May 2010
by: Eleanor J. Bader, t r u t h o u t | Book Review
Assertions by conservatives that President Obama is a socialist reveal a deep lack of knowledge about this political philosophy. (Photo: Fibonacci Blue / Flickr)
“Afterword” by Howard Zinn
$12.00, 173 pages
It’s obvious that if you repeat something often enough, in an authoritative voice, listeners will begin to believe what you say. That’s the theory behind both advertising and conservative media.
The oft-repeated barrage of verbal assaults lobbed at Barack Obama - that he’s a commie/foreigner/infidel/Nazi - confirm this. Indeed, an April 2010 CBS/NY Times poll found that 52 percent of Americans believe that the president is moving the US toward socialism, something they clearly regard as bad, and maybe even dangerous, for the US and its people. What’s more, The Huffington Post reported in February that 78 percent of Republican leaders consider the Commander in Chief to be a full-blown pinko.
That these assertions are insane - and more than a little frightening - goes without saying. But they also reveal a profound lack of knowledge about socialism, the class struggle, and theories of governance.
Alan Maass’ The Case for Socialism goes a long way in rectifying this information gap, and should be required reading in every high school and college civics class. Clearly and accessibly written, it posits socialism as a viable and necessary alternative to capitalism.