There is a problem. Americans see socialism only as it had been viewed during the times of communism in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. This is evil to the Americans. Say "socialism" and they will invariably think of poverty, slavery, shut up or you will be sent to the Gulag, people disappearing, political tortures, individualism abolished, we all march to the same beat, May Day parades, carrying larger-than-life pacards of Stalin, Lenin, Marx and Engels, drab clothing that don't fit well, poor nutrition, poverty, socialized medicare, laziness, total loss of individual enterprise, total loss of reward for striving to do well, atheism, Darwinism, etc. etc. etc.“Democracy extends the sphere of individual freedom, socialism restricts it. Democracy attaches all possible value to each man; socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number. Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.”
― Alexis de Tocqueville
“Society will develop a new kind of servitude which covers the surface of society with a network of complicated rules, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate. It does not tyrannise but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.”
― Alexis de Tocqueville
I think Americans have a hard, very hard time of getting rid of this image, and seeing socialism form from a different angle: "We produce a lot, we have a lot to give, so why not give to those who don't deserve it, by work or by purchasing power, but need it; they are humans too." This is the spirit developing in advanced industrial countries, and advanced democracies. They are examples that show that democracy, capitalism and socialism can be blended, without causing harm or destruction or failure to the system.
In Canada, UK, Germany, and all other European countries, save for the Balkans, wealth is immense; they don't mind welferizing their nations when there are no jobs, for they recognize that joblessness is not an individual's fault, but a force of the economic reality creates it. Why punish those who can't get a job by subjecting them to extreme poverty? In America, that's an immediate and well-accepted way of dealing with people. Nobody even questions the process. This is natural to Americans, to detest and despise those with no jobs, and to allow them to drift their lives into disarray, desperation and defeat. In Europe, in Canada, governments and the population do see and accept that socialized medicare does lead to a healthy nation with no worries about their health and footing the bill, instead of what Americans believe, that socialized medicare destroys the medical system and undermines the American way of life, which is a dog-eat-dog world, you survive or perish.
Then they have the audacity to deny the force of Darwinist evolution.
Anywhoooo... enough said. I wanted to point out only one thing: that Americans apply a certain equivocation, by equating socialism of old to socialism of new. And this is a mistake they make.