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Posted: 4/12/2001 7:05:23 AM EDT

                                    73 Years of (Ha, Ha) Progress
                                    Socialism may be the most successful political movement in

                                    By Michael Long, a director of the White House Writers Group.
                                    April 11, 2001 9:10 a.m.
                                     n 1979, Milton and Rose Friedman delivered the seminal book
                                    Free to Choose. One of its most remarkable elements is the
                                    now-famous "Appendix A,"
                                    listing the 14 economic planks of
                                    the Socialist Party platform of
                                    1928. The Friedmans noted that
                                    every goal in that document had
                                    become a part of American
                                    law. The list includes federal initiatives that are today neither
                                    attacked nor even seriously questioned by even the most
                                    hard-boiled conservatives: nationalization of natural resources,
                                    maintenance of public employment agencies, regulation of the
                                    workday, and federalization of certain transportation concerns
                                    and utilities. Much of the agenda was enacted into law within
                                    twenty years of the Socialists' announcement — and twenty
                                    years past that, their accomplishments had become an
                                    unquestioned part of the political landscape.

                                    It used to be that the looniest ideas of the Loony Left lived only
                                    in the Socialist Platform. And when guys like Bernie Sanders
                                    needed the company of fellow travelers, they had to show up
                                    at somebody's cell meeting with a password and a dog-eared
                                    copy of Mao. But these days, Bernie et al can feel right at
                                    home with the Democrats, who are borrowing pretty heavily
                                    from the proletariat playbook.

                                    So what are the Socialists campaigning for today? It seems
                                    wise to take a look at their agenda, because twenty years from
                                    now, we could be living it — and twenty years past that,
                                    conservatives may even be applauding it. After all, it has
                                    happened before. So consider these highlights from the 2000
                                    Platform of the Socialist Party USA — and, while you're at it,
                                    marvel at how many of these goals are also supported by the

                                    Animal Rights
                                    We call for a ban on animal experimentatio
Link Posted: 4/12/2001 7:06:09 AM EDT
                                    We call for an unconditional amnesty program for
                                    undocumented people who should be accorded the same civil
                                    rights that other members of society possess.

                                    The Socialist Party stands for unconditional disarmament by
                                    the United States….

                                    We call for … rapidly reducing the military budget to less than
                                    10% of its current level.

                                    We call for the disbanding of NATO….

                                    We call for … an end to military recruiting in educational

                                    We support efforts to organize all workers, particularly …
                                    enlisted personnel in the Armed Forces….

                                    Racial Preferences
                                    [Recognizing] the intimate link between racism and capitalism
                                    … [w]e strongly support affirmative action ….

                                    We call for the overhaul of the Constitution of the United
                                    States in order to achieve a diverse legislative body.

                                    We defend the right of seniors to a generous, publicly funded
                                    retirement income.

                                    We call for a National Pension Authority to hold the assets of
                                    private pension funds….

                                    Women's Issues
                                    We support comparable-worth laws and affirmative action for

                                    … And a Few Words to Dream on
                                    We call on all citizens of the world to fight the U.S.
                                    military-industrial complex….

                                    We call for children's allowances in order to satisfy every
                                    child's basic rights and needs in a stimulating, empowering, and
                                    caring environment.

                                    We oppose measures that increase responsibilities and
                                    penalties on youth ostensibly to curb crime.

                                    We call for … public ownership of all large databases….

                                    We call for an end to the expansion of the interstate-highway
                                    system in conjunction with the reduction of
                                    combustion-engine/auto-based transport.
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