(CNSNews.com) – Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) in an interview with “CBS This Morning” said Thursday that young people who support socialism want “Scandinavian socialism,” a “kinder gentler socialism,” but Scandinavia is a welfare state, and the middle class bears the burden, not the rich.
Paul, who was promoting his book, “The Case Against Socialism,” said that young supporters of socialism need to be reminded socialism has always been associated with genocide and famine and led to authoritarianism.
“I want to get to the book because socialism is also in the news these days. You write that people misunderstand it. They throw the term out there, but when you ask them to define it, it's a much more problematic thing, so these polls that show support are kind of misleading,” CBS’s Tony Dokoupil said.
“I think a lot of this next generation, the young people in our country that may be infatuated with socialism may have forgotten the socialism of the last century has been with almost invariably associated with genocide and famine. People need to be reminded of that. It hasn’t been an accident. It's been one after another. Socialism has devolved into authoritarianism,” Paul said.
“Nowadays the big thing is, oh, we want this Kinder gentler socialism. We want Scandinavian socialism, but we make the point – I think very clearly and supported by facts - that, one, Scandinavia is not socialist. It is a big welfare state, but the big lie you’re getting from the left in our country, the big lie that Bernie Sanders perpetuates is oh, but the rich people will pay for it. The top 1% will pay for it. That's not how the way they do it in Scandinavia,” he said.
“The working class and middle class bear a huge burden over there – 25 percent sales tax for everybody. You have an income tax of 60% that starts at $60,000, so they do have a lot of so-called free stuff, socialist kind of stuff, welfare stuff in Scandinavia, but the middle class pay for it. Nothing's really for free. They have enormous taxes, so it's a false allure in our country when they say, oh, the top 1%'s going to pay for it. It won't work. There's not enough money. The middle class ultimately has to be taxed,” Paul said.
“You also talk a lot in your book about finding common ground. How do you do that? How do you do that when you look at the rhetoric that's happening and the disposition that you’ve taken with not being able to answer a question directly?” CBS’s Jericka Duncan asked.
“Here’s the thing, I was at Columbia last night, and they asked what are things you like about Bernie Sanders, and the interesting thing is he and I worked together on a lot of things. For example, on war, whether or not the president should be allowed to go to war in Iran without Congress voting on it,” Paul said.
“While you and Bernie Sanders might be able to do that, how do you make sure that the president of the United States and others who are in even more powerful positions find that common ground and have you actually spoken to the president in reference to Syria?” Duncan asked.
“I have not since the decision to move 50 troops around, I have not talked to the president, but I talked to the president about two weeks ago, and every couple of weeks I do talk to the president. What I would say is I think there's a misreporting of acrimony in our country. There's a lot of acrimony on the internet. There's a lot of acrimony actually on television, but when you go to Washington, you'll be surprised to find that Bernie and I get along,” Paul said.
“I've been to his office. He's been to my office. We talk about things like criminal justice reform. We talk about trying not to go to war without a declaration. We've worked together on trying to end the war in Yemen. I don't like socialism. I think socialism is a disaster, and he's absolutely wrong, but guess what, when we talk we don't bring up socialism. We disagree on that, but we bring up foreign policy and we get on just fine,” he said.
“There are a lot of things that socialism maybe would help with like, paid for leave and health care and all the rest, but maybe there's another way besides socialism to get to those ends,” Dokoupil said.
“Just where’s the money? Find the money. We're about a trillion dollars short right now trying to do the things you want from the government. If you want more from the government, I say, tell me where to find the money,” Rand said.