An email came though with the subject line, “Yikes! Look who just endorsed Obama for 4 more years!” I scrambled to get past the tease and into the revelation. I expected the villain would be a prominent Republican governor or mayor or some major conservative having one of those fits that swept Arianna Huffington away from us a few years ago.

I was disappointed almost to the point of anger. At the end of the “Yikes”-suspense came the staggering news that Obama had been endorsed by the Communist Party of the United States. I shot back a mildly reproachful message to the sender telling him, “Obama’s endorsement by the Communist Party is about as surprising as a toll booth on a turnpike.” The attitude of my message to him was essentially, “Grow up politically and don’t bother me any more until you do!”

Later in the day, through part-history, part-nostalgia and a huge part-self-congratulations at how long I’ve lived – not the years, but the eras I’ve survived – I thought hard upon it. “We have a president running for re-election who not only has the endorsement of the Communist Party, but it’s a masterfully neat fit!” And nobody knows, cares, reacts, titters or trembles.

This is not one of those pre-election screeds urging, “Don’t vote for Obama. He’s a Commie!” That’s a Frisbee toss; this, by comparison, is a space launch. I was alive and well in early 1950 when Wisconsin Sen. Joe McCarthy opened the “McCarthy Era” in Wheeling, W.Va., by leveling the accusation that there were 205 known Communists working in the U. S. State Department. I was alive and angry when our valiant World War II ally, the Soviet Union, started the Cold War with the Berlin Blockade in 1947. I shivered through the pinnacle of Communist power, the fall of South Vietnam in 1975. Then as little freedom-fights began to break out inside the Soviet empire I realized that the anti-Communist concussion of the Hungarian Revolution in 1956 had slapped a time limit on Communism’s future. If you see a Hungarian on the street, hug him.

Once upon a time, if there’d been any link – even spider-web slim – connecting any American candidate, at any level, to Communism, that would have been the end of his candidacy, his ambitions and his respect within the community.

That’s gone. Completely, utterly gone. You and I live in a country where nobody cares how tightly or lightly a candidate for the highest office in the land is tied to the Communist Party.

I’m not going to throw myself on the floor and give up on America. I’m just marveling at how successful our enemies have been at reducing, trivializing and finally eradicating any feeling of antipathy that might remain against Communism. Can you imagine, “He’s a Nazi. So what?” Can you imagine, “He’s al-Qaida. So what?” But, “He’s a Communist. So what?” is real and here and now. As the late Democratic Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan warned, “They’re deliberately dumbing us down.” Ignorance is the sperm of apathy. If you don’t know, you can’t care.

Communism had to be dry-cleaned and repackaged before it could even be talked about in America. As long as there were the post-midnight knocks on the door, the labor camps, the “gulag”, the brutal “re-education” camps, Stalin’s executions, Che Guevara’s firing squads and many atrocious et cetera, Americans said, “No thanks!”

Now we’re down to Communism’s economic failure. I count 39 Communist-Socialist failures; no successes. It doesn’t work. Too bad. It looks so good on paper. If you had a cat that had destroyed 39 sofas, would you buy him sofa No. 40 to work on?

It’s hard to give up any kind of addiction, even to peanuts and pro football. But if the addiction is to government checks, the cumulative effect can bring down a free system of government. We are at that stage this instant. Can we resist the allure of “free money”? We don’t know. Those of us who have seen full-blown Communism in action care. If we can restore the importance of work in relation to money, Hooray and Hallelujah! What a major victory that would be!

If Mitt Romney wins the election, he will have a terrible time trying to roll back the lust for entitlements to its proper boundaries. Obama didn’t start America’s love for free stuff. But, Brother, what a follow-up artist! Obama has made us comfortable with Marxism. At least the real Communist countries never seemed to worry about any national debt.

It was Communism that made Richard Nixon president, first as vice president because of the good job he did exposing Alger Hiss as a traitor. I remember when the Communist scare was so acute, if you got called down to the “security office” of a government bureau over a lost glove, your co-workers wouldn’t sit with you at lunch any more.

And now we’ve got a Communist Party in America and their preferred candidate: Barack Obama!

Is Obama really a Marxist? Yes. He’s 100 percent Marx – 50 percent Karl and 50 percent Groucho.

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