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The Myth of the Two-Party System

Sabrin Murray 2.26.18 04

I cast my first vote for president in 1968 and pulled the lever for Vice President Hubert Humphrey, even though I was beginning to have my doubts about LBJ’s Great Society policies and realized the undeclared Vietnam War with more than 500,000 troops on the ground in Southeast Asia was a disaster.

The Democrats’ big government domestic and foreign policies were making less sense to me.

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A year later after doing more reading about the economy and our interventionist foreign policy, I joined the Republican Party.  I took the Republicans rhetoric about their support for limited government and free enterprise as well as Nixon’s promise to end the Vietnam War ASAP at face value and expected President Nixon to reverse course.  I was wrong.

On August 15, 1971, President Nixon imposed wage and price controls and severed the last link between gold and the dollarThree weeks later I read Murray Rothbard’s New York Times devastating critique of Nixonomics.  Economic fascism had come to America. 

I left the Republican Party realizing Nixon and his economic advisors turned their backs on free market principles.  And the rest is history. 

Both Republicans and Democrats support big government—ever increasing government spending, massive budget deficits, money printing, assaults on civil liberties, and an interventionist foreign policy.  All the military aid to Ukraine and Israel must be borrowed, which means American taxpayers will be paying interest on the additional debt forever to support our “allies.” 

(The federal budget keeps increasing no matter if a Democrat or Republican is in the White House.) ☹️

(Budget deficits exploded under both Trump and Biden.)😖

(The federal debt has increased exponentially under both Trump and Biden.) 😣

You get the picture.  As far as spending and deficit spending, there is no difference between Democrats and Republicans.

Fast forward to recent developments.

 This week’s Barron’s cover story: “Trump Hates Bidenomics. Why He Can’t Dump It,” points outs that the president’s major spending programs had bipartisan support, even though Heritage Foundation denounced Bidenomics as “big government socialism.”  In short, Biden used the power of the presidency to funnel money to corporations around the country, especially in red states.  Businesses should be raising money to expand by selling more common or preferred stock or issuing bonds.  Instead, they are part of the problem of returning America to a free- market society. 

Economic fascism is embraced by both Democrats and Republicans. 

But it gets worse.  Democrats and Republicans overwhelmingly supported more funds to Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan.   And the House, with bipartisan support, approved reauthorization of the controversial bill that allows the federal government to conduct surveillances without warrants on Americans.  The president signed the bill after the Senate approved it.  

On the big issues, the Democrats and Republicans have become the “Washington Party,” a term I have used for the past 50+ years to describe our political system.  In recent years, some analysts have used the term, UniParty, to describe the single mindset of both Democrats and Republicans.  

Some of Biden’s major economic legislation also had bipartisan backing: The 2021 infrastructure deal and 2022 Chips Act—the latter fueling a surge in U.S. chip manufacturithe likes  

American politics is dominated by the Welfare-Warfare State Party (WWSP) comprised of two wings, Democrats and Republicans.  Although there are differences on some issues, e.g., abortion, the Second Amendments and other important policies, the fact is WWSP will continue to expand the spending and borrowing, money printing and a huge military-industrial complex. 

The bottom line—the welfare-warfare state is financially unsustainable.  The day of reckoning is getting closer every day.  As Rothbard eloquently wrote about what needs to be done.

“We wish to break with all aspects of the liberal State: with its welfare and its warfare, its monopoly privileges and its egalitarianism, its repression of victimless crimes whether personal or economic. Only we offer technology without technocracy, growth without pollution, liberty without chaos, law without tyranny, the defense of property rights in one’s person and in one’s material possessions.”

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Every Wednesday at 11:05am talk show host Gary Nolan and I discuss the economy and politics.  The Fort Myers Mises Circle presentations are available onlineMy Ludwig von Mises Lecture at the Institute is also online

Latest podcast on healthcare with host Johnathan Westover; Incentivizing wellness podcast with Bernadette Pajer; the Human Action podcast with Bob Murphy on my American journey; Joseph Cotto and I discuss Argentina and the US, and the Human podcast with Bob Murphy on healthcare; Robert Scott Bell and I discuss healthcare on the second hour of his podcast.

Murray Sabrin, PhD, is emeritus professor of finance, Ramapo College of New Jersey. Dr. Sabrin is considered a “public intellectual” for writing about the economy in scholarly and popular publications. His book, The Finance of Health Care: Wellness and Innovative Approaches to Employee Medical Insurance (Business Expert Press, Oct. 24, 2022), and his other BEP publication, Navigating the Boom/Bust Cycle: An Entrepreneur’s Survival Guide (October 2021), provides decision makers with tools needed to help manage their businesses during the business cycle.  Sabrin’s autobiography, From Immigrant to Public Intellectual: An American Story, was published in November, 2022.

Murray’s Newsletter is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.

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Sabrin Murray 2.26.18 04

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