Mike Pence’s CPAC lies about American history

If you find the fact that 82% of Republicans continue to approve of Donald Trump surprising, it’s time to look at the broader party. But you might want to put a clothespin on your nose, because it’s full of more shit than a Christmas goose. Here’s one example:

Vice President Pence states that “freedom” ended slavery and defeated Nazis in World War II, which is both nonsensical (How does “freedom” do anything without people?) and, in Pence’s use of it, dishonest, because he really meant “capitalism” when he said, “It was freedom, not socialism, that ended slavery, won two world wars, and stands today as the beacon of hope for the world.”

Umm… as every kid who takes US history or government understands, the opposite of socialism is capitalism, not freedom. Pence’s point wasn’t to promote freedom but to attack rising support among young voters for the kind of social welfare policies that would bring the US into the same realm as Canada and our peer nations in Europe.If you want to argue against things like universal healthcare and a guaranteed basic wage–ideas important to young voters and taking center stage in the developing campaigns of people like Andrew Yang–fine. But do it with actual historical information. Conservatives are supposed to, like, love war history, right? Yet Pence can’t even get the facts of the Civil War or WWI or II right.

He’s being intellectually disingenuous when he says that capitalism defeated such evils as slavery and fascism: support of “freedom” (the “freedom” to own black people) was part of the capitalist argument that gave us and kept us in a system of slavery. And the Soviet Union, which was, like, the definition of a “socialist regime” at the time, was central to the Allied victory in World War II.

And really, a man who argues that the president should be able to use emergency powers to separate children of color from their parents and send them to concentration camps has no right to pretend to care about WWII. There is a comparison to be made to the US today and WWII, but it’s not one that is favorable to the Trump administration.

 

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