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Republican-style socialism in Congress
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Editor, Manteca Bulletin,

I was rummaging through the Bulletin, and I saw an editorial from the president of the local Republican Party organization, Frank Aquila, and he was going on trying to tie the Democrats to our favorite socialists, the Communist Party.  This got me to reflect on an article that I just read concerning, of all things, socialists in congress.

The article was about farm subsidies, and who actually collects them.  I am sure you have read in this paper many times about how the town of Manteca was started. It had to do with dairymen and a skimming station. There are many of these family dairy farms that are struggling due to the corporations that are buying the milk from them for less than what it cost to produce. Many are losing their farms due to this, and where is the help?

It seems that the “help” is going to wealthy congressmen. One example would be Republican Senator from Iowa, Chuck Grassley. You remember Chuck; he is the one who is fighting off socialism by trying to kill the health care bill, all the while collecting farm subsidies. That’s right, he and his family are collecting welfare, and to the tune of $1 million in federal handouts over an 11-year period, $699,248 went to his son, and $238,974 going to Chuck. You know how they say welfare is generational, kids of welfare recipients tend to become welfare recipients themselves, well it must be true, because his grandson has snagged himself $5,964 in 2005, and $2,363 in 2006. It seems the Grassley family, they learn early how to enjoy other people’s money. Sen. Grassley was quoted in the Washington Times saying, “Whenever the government does more…that’s a movement towards socialism.” He ought to know, especially because the government has done more for him and his kin than for Americans struggling with high medical bills and mortgages.

It seems Chuck isn’t the only Republican collecting welfare, you have the welfare queen herself, Michelle Bachmann, Republican congresswoman from Minnesota. She is out there rallying the troops against the assumed Obama socialist movement by day, and by night collecting welfare checks amounting to $251,973 over 11 years for the family farm. According to federal records compiled by Environmental Working Group, from 1995 to 2006, the farm had been managed by Bachmann’s recently deceased father-in-law, with the bulk of the subsidies going to dairy and corn.

Both dairy and corn are heavily subsidized or “socialized” businesses in America, and are subject to strict government price controls. In 2005 alone, Washington spent $4.8 billion propping up corn prices.

Two Republicans collecting your tax dollars really doesn’t make a good case, so how about Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan, whose family has been on the government take for at least 11 years collecting $500,000. The senator recently held a “prayercast” with Michele Bachmann to beseech God to kill health care reform as soon as possible because it would bring an evil socialist spirit into America. Like Bachmann, Brownback has a fierce belief in God, the free market and a two-year limit on all welfare benefits—unless it’s welfare to rich Republicans who don’t need it.

How is it that these free marketers have no issue with government-controlled prices, while collecting handouts from you and me?  There are more “free marketers” who are collecting these welfare checks, but I am limited in space to list them all. According to 11 years’ worth of Environmental Working Group data that tracks $200 billion in subsidies, the wealthiest 10 percent of “farmers” have collected 75 percent of the money.

How come Frank didn’t tell us about the socialists in Congress? Is it because they are Republicans, or is it that Frank’s propaganda would not play well if he included this information. Where is he on helping the local family dairy farmers keep their farms? I guess the rich Republican congressmen want to keep it all for themselves. That’s socialism for you.

Scott Sadlowski
Feb. 24, 2010