Crop Subsidies and Farm Aid: These programs originated in the Great Depression, but over the years, they have been morphed by big agri-business to achieve different ends. Sugar price supports destroyed the market for sugar in this country and nearly bankrupted Cuba (which was, perhaps the intent). It also meant that the corn industry made a fortune by selling cheaper, but perhaps unhealthful, High Fructose Corn Syrup. The teabaggers deride Obama for "picking winners in the marketplace" but historically, both parties have picked "big corn" as a winner, again and again. Ethanol mandates, of course, have bootstrapped this by a factor of 10. Big milk is another area of historic subsidies, to the point where the government was buying up tons and tons of milk and cheese and warehousing it. Republican or Democrat, if you are from a farm state, you cannot afford to vote against these subsidies.
Those are just a few examples of old-school "socialism" from the "good old days" - much of which is still with us today. There are dozens, if not hundreds of examples of other forms of "regulation" from the good old days - if you bother to look. Regulation is nothing new. Our economy has been managed and directed since this country was founded.
The battle cry of the teabagger is "That's Socialism!" when talking about Obama policies. But these sort of Socialist or even Communist policies have been around for a long time. And to the far-right, they no longer even register on the radar.
The teabagger decries Food Stamps as "socialism" but says, "Don't touch my Social Security!" - failing to realize that both are government wealth-transfer programs.
Similarly, they decry Obamacare, as "the government should not be collecting tax money from people and using it to pay for the health care of others!" - but of course, in the same breath, they say, "But don't touch my Medicare!"
In other words, there is a lot of selective memory going on here. The narrative being sold is this: America used to be a great place where you could buy big-block muscle cars with no seatbelts and do whatever you wanted to. Then those namby-pamby Democrats got into the picture and "regulated" everything. Fortunately, Ronald Reagan put a stop to that! We need more Republicans in the White House to de-regulate things!
The reality is quite clearly otherwise. Cars today are better then they were 'back then' - in every measure. And it was a Democratic President who signed most of the de-regulation legislation that people give Ronald Reagan credit for.
What Republicans have done, in the last 30 years, has been to de-regulate our banking system - twice. The result the first time was Michael Millikan and the Junk-Bond debacle, and the "Savings and Loan" crises and a housing sector meltdown. Twenty years later, when another Republican administration loosened the reins on the banking industry, we saw "Credit Default Swaps" and bundled mortgage-backed securities - which were as worthless as Millikan's junk bonds of 1989. And once again, we saw a crises in the housing sector.
But, you know, you can't tell the teabaggers anything. To them, the entire housing crises was caused by an obscure program called the "Community Reinvestment Act" which was designed to put an end to redlining in the lending business and allow the poor access to mortgages. In their narrative, it allowed welfare queens (read: black people) to buy houses they could not afford, which of course crashed the entire economy. A bizarre fantasy, to say the least - at least to anyone who worked in the Real Estate business or was an investor at the time (or both). I can tell you firsthand that in Ft. Lauderdale Florida, the people buying and flipping mini-mansions and condos were not poor black folks, but middle-class white people who all got a little too greedy - and were using funny-money "liar's loans" to finance it all.
The Community Reinvestment Act had nothing to do with it. And it was not the bank's fault that liars chose to lie on liar's loans - right? For some reason, the teabaggers have selective memory on all of this. They are the victims here, having bought huge houses they could never afford in the first place, and lying to get them - and wondering why they lost it all. It must be the black people's fault! After all, they steal everything, right?
And therein lies the problem. People believe what they want to believe, not what is actually true. And if someone sells you a "story" that all your problems are the result of someone else's action - preferably a minority group that you hate anyway, it is an easy story to sell.
You are not at fault for your situation in life! Your stupidity, your lack of interest in education, your laziness, your sloth, your astounding level of chutzpah, have nothing to do with the fact that you squander money, are not qualified for any sort of high-paying job, and the fact you just got laid off. No, no, it was the black people and the Democrats. They are the reason you are put-upon!
Only a stupid child would believe such a story. But sadly, that is increasingly the mentality of adults in America today.