Frum tries to talk some sense into the Republican base:

Conservatives who fume against the president’s supposed socialism are chasing phantoms: railing against dead ideas while failing to notice the actual gathering dangers to economic liberty and American prosperity.

It’s not the red hand of socialism we have to fear. It’s the dead hand of the status quo. An example:

In 2009, the US health economy reached a symbolic tipping point: for the first time, more than 50% of the dollars spent on health were spent by some agency of federal or state government. Sounds like socialism, right? But this tipping point was not driven by President Obama. It was driven by the growth of Medicare – and last I heard, it was President Obama who was proposing slowdowns in Medicare spending, and it was Sarah Palin and the Tea Party activists who were denouncing reductions in Medicare as tantamount to “death panels.”

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.