For a number of months, I've seen this commentary and question posed with various journalists (MSNBC, Fox News, NPR, etc).
They are all puzzled and talk like drunks in some French bar about the lack of socialism and what prevented socialism from entering into American society and culture. I noticed some interview where they tried to ask the Democrat Debbie Wasserman Schultz (she chairs the party headquarters) what the difference was between socialists and democrats.....and it was one of those scary moments when you could tell.....she really didn't have an idea on the answer.
So, I'll take on the question of.....why is there no socialism in America?
Basically, as confusing as it might sound.....we are a socialist country already....loaded with tons of socialism. Shocking?
Social Security....is pure socialism. All these gifts from the government? Elements of socialism. Free cheese or butter for poor folks? They came from socialism. Saving the banks during last economic crisis? Socialism at work. All these rules to help get minority kids into college? They are socialistic in nature.
Once we got around to 1913 and the sixteenth amendment to the Constitution.....allowing the income tax deal to occur.....we were entering the socialist era. You then had a pot of money to gift people and make them feel happy over your political achievements (or lack of achievements). The money made up for reality or the misshaped world that we live in.....where fairness met unfairness on a frequent basis.
Everywhere you look.....socialism is busting away at society and quietly part of American culture now.
Food inspection, road construction, medical programs, fire departments, and even the US postal system.....all are examples of socialism in some way. Farm subsidies, the use of the FBI, the prison system, the VA, national parks, national forests, the Hoover Dam, TVA, the free lunch program at schools......all are examples of socialism.
Having a national income tax in 1913....gave Congress tons of money to bring in this new era. Up until that point....it was sales taxes that worked, and it just didn't create the type of taxation environment that socialism demanded.
I know....there are dozens of Fox News folks who get all weepy and tell you that America just isn't socialist in nature. Well....we've been socialist for 102 years and no one is really bothered by our brand of socialism.
Oh, I agree.....we could be French-socialists, or Swedish-socialists.....sitting in dark cafes....smoking a pipe and listening to hot lusty women sing socialist songs. We could sip expensive cognac (heavily taxed) while talking about such-and-such new socialist comedy from our national TV network, and later eat a piece of $10 cheese imported from our friendly neighbor of Switzerland....who is also very socialistic in nature.
But we are mostly American-socialists.....who try hard to pretend we are pure capitalist at heart....drinking cheap PBR beer (still taxed).....eating some cheap burger from the bar (taxed), and talking about some new such-and-such capitalist comedy from our national independent TV network who shows us commercials (taxed). It may be a different way of handling money or perceiving socialism....but the American-socialist guy and the French-socialistic guy really aren't that different.
I'm sorry I burst your bubble. If this really bothers you an awful lot.....well....go over to the liquor store and buy some French-made cognac....which was taxed when made in French, and taxed when imported into the US, and taxed again when brought into your state-run liquor shop. It'll make you feel better. Some advice....savor every drop and share it with a friend (another socialist).