: SDF: Socialism: public control of the MEANS OF PRODUCTION. Government subsidies are not the same thing as government ownership of the factories that produce the things you use.
Well, I guess I deserved to be corrected. After all, I did bother to look up "socialism" in the dictionary before writing my widget example, and it's defined as you say. Strike one for me.
: SDF: Yes, that's correct, that's just government economic intervention, it's not "socialism". The government buys stuff and sells stuff, so what, the Roman Empire bought and sold stuff. More specifically, government intervention for the sake of "economic prosperity" has been standard stuff since World War II. Please do read something about John Maynard Keynes, he wasn't a socialist, and I get SO tired of typing at people who wish to disregard the Keynesian era of economic history...
Sorry, Charlie. Since I always seem to agree with Keynes whenever people write/speak about him, I guess it behooves me to read up on him, but really, no need to get SO tired over it. Not everyone knows everything you know, and patience is a virtue.
What I was trying to say in my own clumsy way is that the conservative politicians (and their supporters) who bark loudest about the glory of laissez-faire capitalism (LCF) are also often the first to beg for government intervention when their own interests are threatened. The programs I work for involve food, and if LCF had its way, many food items would be far cheaper than they are now. Yes, I've bastardized the definition of socialism to fit my political ends, but what do you call non-laissez faire capitalism? After all, capitalism is the distribution of goods and services in a competitive free market, and that is NOT what is at play right now in the U.S.