Having been a Democratic Socialist for over 20 years now (member of the Democratic Socialists Of America) I've beheld just about every permutation of how it's been distorted by know nothings as well as academics and others who ought to know better. This is why I was generally pleased to read Barnard College poly sci professor Sheri Berman's piece in The Sunday Denver Post ('Five Myths About Socialism', p. 1B, March 31) to educate more citizens.
Prof. Berman did a creditable job overall separating facts from fiction ("myths") in her piece, but still left some misconceptions of her own. First let's look at the positives!
Under Myth 1 ('Socialism is a single coherent ideology') Berman correctly points out one of the Right's recurring errors is conflating all forms of socialism. As Prof. Berman notes
In truth, a primary litmus test for whether U.S. citizens are anywhere near actual democratic socialism would be their degree of happiness. We already know from The World Happiness Report ('Americans are becoming more miserable and data backs it up', Denver Post, p. 8A, March 24)the U.S. places at No. 17, down 6 places (probably coinciding with Trump's ascension). Meanwhile, the Scandinavian nations that top the happiness list all practice democratic socialism - a point about which even the great Oprah had to be educated. See e.g.
American marginal tax rates - certainly for the three middle income quintiles- would need to go up dramatically to even remotely compare with these nations - such as Denmark and Norway. No one sees that happening soon, certainly so long as a Republican dominated Senate seeks to cede more and more resources to the wealthiest - including the top 1 percent.