It's sad that so many people claim to want socialism for the U.S., but it's interesting that their model isn't South America where it has been an absolute failure but the Nordic countries which are held up as the ideal.
It's nice to have someone come along to debunk the Nordic myth. The Nordic nations were characterized by "free markets and small government in the 19th century and early 20th century. Unfortunately, the big welfare state policies, starting in the 1960s, have hampered their economic performance." Source: Veronique de Rugy's Does Socialism Work for Sweden? That's the Wrong Question. She goes on:
Work ethics and a higher tolerance for collecting undeserved benefits have developed slowly, but the data show that over time, "Nordic people have changed their attitudes as social democratic policies have made it less rewarding to work hard and more rewarding to live off the government."
She's quoting from a book by Nima Sanandaji titled Debunking Utopia: Exposing the Myth of Nordic Socialism. More from de Rugy:
Finally, Sanandaji writes, "Nordic countries have more generous welfare systems than the United States, but change has indeed taken place." In recent years, they've tempered the damage of their big-government policies by scaling back their welfare states and setting limits on their fiscal burdens. Their governments have adopted more work incentives, lowered taxes and allowed for more flexibility when hiring and firing workers. They've opened their public schools and health care to more competition, and Sweden partially privatized its pension system. They may not be free market quite yet, but they're no socialist—or even liberal—utopia, either.
So the right question would seem to be, "when will politicians stop promising a utopia they know is not achievable?" The answer is, "after they get elected to the office they seek."