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Embracing Socialism: How the Democratic Party Turned It's Back On American Values

Thursday, January 12, 2006

I read the following excerpt at the Social Security website. It was found in an essay titled Historical Background and Development of Social Security. What I found interesting was how easily the Democratic Party embraced a member of a rival political party just so it could assimilate one of it's programs. Does anyone believe that by simply changing a man's party registration you could change the beliefs of the man? Besides, it wasn't even Sinclair's idea to change his party affiliation. The idea was presented to him by the democrats. He must have thought to himself, "What a perfect opportunity to infiltrate the Democratic Party and infect it with all the platforms of the Socialist Party." Dare I say, it worked!

A Writer & his EPIC:
Upton Sinclair was a famous novelist and social crusader from California , and an avowed Socialist, who in 1933 was asked by a dissident group of Los Angeles Democrats to help them draft a platform proposal for dealing with the state's economic problems. They were so impressed by Sinclair's plan--which he christened the End Poverty in California, or EPIC plan--that they persuaded him to change his registration to Democratic and to run for the party's nomination for governor in 1934.
Sinclair's EPIC scheme was a 12-point program to remake the Californian economy. It involved the issuance of scrip currency, the creation of large state-run bartering enterprises, a tax on idle land and floating a large state bond for $300 million. Point 10 of the plan was a proposal to give pensions of $50 a month to all needy persons over 60 who had lived in California for at least three years. There was a state pension plan in operation in California at the time, but its benefits were very low, and the eligibility requirements were so severe that most elderly Californians could not qualify. (This was true of many of the state pension programs around the country.) Sinclair's pension proposal was very popular because in one fell swoop it reduced the minimum age for pensions by 10 years, almost doubled their value, and eliminated restrictive eligibility requirements. 
Sinclair's EPIC program, and especially its pension proposal, had a great appeal in Depression-weary California. Sinclair and his supporters organized EPIC clubs, published newsletters, formed ad hoc organizations and found a large chorus of supporters with unlimited enthusiasm for his ideas. In short order, Upton Sinclair's EPIC movement captured the Democratic party and Sinclair became the Democratic nominee for governor in the election of 1934. The party's platform became the EPIC program, including the pension plan.
When the votes were counted, Upton Sinclair got 37% of the vote, the Republican candidate got 48% and a third-party progressive candidate took another 13%. Had it been a two-man race, Upton Sinclair might have become Governor of California and the EPIC pension plan might well have become the California model.


Blogger Alnot said...

Government gives and government takes away blessed be the... now hold on just a cotton pickin minute. When did government become God? ==evil grin==

Thanks for the history lesson.

12:39 PM  

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