"These programs actually weakened us as a people. You see, almost forever, it was institutions in society that assumed the role of taking care of one another. If someone was sick in your family, you took care of them. If a neighbor met misfortune, you took care of them. You saved for your retirement and your future because you had to. We took these things upon ourselves in our communities, our families, and our homes, and our churches and our synagogues."
As Dana Carvey's Church Lady would say - “Well, isn't that SPE-CIAL?!”
Wingnuts like Rubio wax nostalgic for the good old days of Ozzie and Harriet, Father Knows Best and Leave it to Beaver. Days, which they believe in their bizarro minds, were days where things like retirement benefits, health insurance, unemployment and disability assistance and food and shelter in old age weren't social issue concerns because "everybody took care of everybody". And if for some reason someone were too ill or injured to work or suffered a catastrophic life event that put you in dire economic straits, "somebody" would take you in and provide care for you and help you pay your bills and get you back on your feet again in no time. Are you following along here?
In Rubio's delusional teabagging mind it was a 1950's, black and white television world of no pain, no suffering, no children going to bed hungry at night, no elderly having to decide between eating cat food or pay for their medication, no homelessness, no domestic violence, no crushing household debt, no discrimination. Ahh yes - it was a time of sunshine, harp music, and rose petals falling gently from bright, sunny skies, settling softly on the fair haired heads of blue eyed Americans from sea to shining sea.
There's just one little problem with Rubio's sweet, benign retrospection on what life in these United States was like prior to the advent of a progressive social safety net -- It's a huge, steaming warm, maggot-infested pile of pure horse shit.
What Rubio and the Teahadists want, with the stealth wealth backing of the Koch brothers, is a total and permanent deconstruction of FDR's new deal. That includes the elimination of Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, unemployment benefits, employer provided pension plans and other benefits -- and it all begins with destroying the unions and the right to collective bargain for those very things. They have a huge hard on at the prospect of creating a two-tiered society where the elites dictate life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness to the lower tier as they deem fit to interpret it.
And sadly, as George Carlin once disgustedly observed, they'll get it - they'll get it all. And frankly, when they do get it all and finally realize their wet dream of unfettered Oligarchy, I am hopeful that by that point the vast majority of Americans will have seen well enough of what these horrible people envision for a future America and begin to finally fight back - in the streets if need be. Because, I honestly believe that is what it will eventually require to beat back these fascists and put this country back on the path to peace, prosperity and equitable economic and legal justice for all.