Socialism is re-entering the national debate and Cold War scholar Dr. Paul Kengor sees the ideas and policies that fueled the spread of communism returning, this time disguised as the green agenda.
Proposals like the Green New Deal call for a significant transformation of American society in order to combat climate change. In his State of the Union address, President Trump criticized such ideas, saying, “America will never be a socialist country.” Since then, he makes ridiculing socialism a major part of his campaign messaging, and many allies echo his words of condemnation.
Dr. Kengor is a professor of political science at Grove City College. He has written a number of books including “Dupes: How America’s Adversaries have Manipulated Progressives for a Century” and “The Politically Incorrect Guide to Communism”.
Dr. Kengor argues that the Democratic green agenda is socialistic, and, whether they admit to it or not, their desire for more big government control is their driving passion.
“That’s where their hearts are. That’s when you really saw their motivations, what drives them, their broader thinking about this.”, said Dr. Kengor
Kengor sees an old ideology at the root of these policies.
“Three of their four planks are about things like the Economic Bill of Rights, abolishing the electoral college; things that are political, economic, ideological much more than they are environmental. This is, sort of, classic leftist, progressive, socialistic, economic socialism more than it is green environmentalism.”
Dr. Kengor believes this is a time tested strategy of the far left.
“Many of those old reds went green”, he explains. After the fall the Soviet Empire, many communist and social politicians in Russia and Eastern Europe joined environmentalist parties. Their attraction to environmentalism, Dr. Kengor says, comes from their desire for power.
“For the old communists and socialists, what the environmental movement allows them to do is control and regulate and limit people and resources.”
Kengor contends the cause of environmentalism is especially attractive to socialists because of nature’s inability to object.
“Among other things, the beauty of it for them is that the trees and frogs and rocks and birds can’t tell them to go take a hike.”, Dr. Kengor says. “So it’s sort of the perfect silent constituency for the far-left.”
Kengor is encouraged by the overwhelming negative response the New Green Deal received, and believes Mitch McConnell’s call for a vote was brilliant. He thinks the legislation is clearly ridiculous, and welcomes the opportunity to see where Democrats stand on the issue.
“All of which makes me wonder, if maybe Elizabeth Warren’s old pal Ed Markey from Massachusetts didn’t pull a sabotage on the young Ocasio-Cortez. This really ought to be a career killer for her”, says Dr. Kengor.
Listen to the full podcast to hear more of Dr. Kengor’s critique of socialism, why he thinks the Left’s environmentalism is simply a vehicle for increasing state authority, and what he thinks the proper response to proposals like the Green New Deal should be.
By Christian Whittle