As Britain's voters turned out Churchill in 1945...
This year's election in the United States, assuming that it stands, is comparable only to the equally inexplicable experience of Great Britain in 1945.
At that point, after fighting successfully and at great cost to keep from being conquered by socialists, Britain threw out its wartime leaders and embraced socialism.
One of many ironies was that the amazing power of capitalism is the only thing that kept Britain from falling with the rest of Europe to Hitler's national socialists. American industry was able to build its own mighty arsenal and also supply Britain and other allies.
Indomitable Winston Churchill, one of history's greatest leaders, was tossed out of office after 50 years of government service in favor of far-left Clement Atlee, who had promised a glorious welfare state for Britain.
As leader of the Labor Party, Atlee had been a pacifist and against re-armament but served as Churchill's deputy prime minister during the war.
A follower of Keynesian economics and former member of the Fabian Society, Atlee presided over a greatly enlarged welfare state, nationalizing industries such as coal, steel, and railroads, and established the National Health Service, all financed by punitive taxation.
Perhaps summing up his outlook, Atlee said in one speech, "We have absolutely abandoned any idea of nationalist loyalty. We are deliberately putting a world order before our loyalty to our own country."
Churchill famously said of Atlee, "There's a lot less there than meets the eye."
In a radio address May 1945, Winston Churchill said: "I must tell you that a socialist policy is abhorrent to British ideas on freedom. There is to be one State, to which all are to be obedient in every act of their lives. This State, once in power, will prescribe for everyone: where they are to work, what they are to work at, where they may go and what they may say, what views they are to hold, where their wives are to queue up for the State ration, and what education their children are to receive. A socialist state could not afford to suffer opposition — no socialist system can be established without a political police. They [the Labor government] would have to fall back on some form of Gestapo."
Under Atlee's welfare state, the wartime problems of food, housing, and other shortages persisted, and in 1952, Conservatives took back the government and restored Churchill.
Britain, however, has struggled under socialism ever since except for the brief shining moments, as when Margaret Thatcher was prime minister.
Granted, Churchill was much more articulate, knowledgeable, and amiable than Donald Trump. But like Trump, he was a bulwark against a socialist state that ruled the people rather than being ruled.
The whiplash-inducing switch to socialism in 1945 Britain was more sudden than the creeping advance of that scourge in America since the 1930s, but its acceptance with a clear choice here is disturbing to many Americans who had hoped it would be slowed or stopped with Trump's rough-and-tumble style and refusal to buckle to the Democrat media.
Image credit: Pixabay public domain.