Winston Churchill once entered a men’s room where his Labour Party rival Clement Attlee was standing at a urinal. As Churchill moved to the far end of the room, Attlee asked: “Feeling standoffish today, are we, Winston?”Whole thing here.
Churchill’s reply went down in history: “That’s right. Every time you see something big, you want to nationalize it.”
Attlee’s mid-20th-century Labourites advocated (and implemented) the nationalization of industries including railroads, coal, electricity, gas and steel. That was what made them socialists. It was also why Churchill’s riposte was funny.
But it’s not a joke that would make sense if applied to U.S. politics today.
UPDATE: "Socialist Obama Already Abandoning Socialism."