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The Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of socialism reads, "any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods." A secondary definition is,"a system of society or group living in which there is no private property."

Chris Foulke apparently neglected to study the word's meaning prior to penning his recent letter, as none of the examples he cited (military, roads, schools, police, fire departments ...) have anything whatsoever to do with production or distribution of goods. They are a distinct and separate part of the social construct, and will be found under any form of governance or economic system.

His question, "What part of this socialism thing do you want to give up?", is meaningless, as we don't have a "socialism thing." We have a free enterprise system thing, which has made us the most successful nation in history; conservatives and Republicans want to maintain that.

Liberals and Democrats, however, do indeed advocate for a "socialism thing," as manifested throughout the Green New Deal (House Resolution 109) — mandating that the power grid be 100% zero emission (paragraph 2C) yet somehow affordable (2D), upgrading all existing buildings in the United States (2E), overhauling all transportation systems (2H), guaranteeing jobs for everybody (4H), making them union jobs (4G), and on and on. All these things entail government ownership or control, and are representative of a "socialism thing," which rational people adamantly oppose.

Keeping actual definitions in mind will stand us all in good stead as we endure the 2020 election cycle.

John Brenan

Corvallis (Aug. 22)

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