Ah, but the public demanded most of those redistributive policies. See, that's what happens in a Republic; a problem or a the perception of a problem arises, and then the people's representatives seek a solution to said problem which usually requires the application of public funds (public welfare). Sometimes when the public is not paying attention, then redistributive policies are enacted by our "representatives" which seek to funnel public funds upward to an elite powerful few (corporate welfare). And, sometimes "representatives" become a tad overly enthusiastic about "representing" their district's constituents and get a little greedy with the public funds (pork).
That is all
Why, of course, the least successful will want what the most successful have. Redistribution of wealth is a foundation for socialism, the haves being forced to give to the have nots. Not much different than someone breaking into your house and demanding your money. But, what is interesting, depression era have nots were not in that position for any reason of their own but today's have nots seem to like it there, drawing their welfare and food vouchers, then disability, later. What my observations are is that we are living in an entitlement society, that is, those who think the haves owe them a damn living. Problem is, the have nots are breeding themselves into a majority, therefore, producing another generation of expectant leeches who think work is a casualty of life, rather than a purposeful fulfillment of it. There is no balance to charity by the government, so it is widely abused and misused. You will find todays public a lot less demanding when they realize they're getting the shaft and that, my friend, is why the healthcare issue died such a miserable death. No one really wants rubber stamp health care. I was uninsured for over 16 years and ended up owing a hospital bill of $17,200 bucks and doctor bills totaling $6,000. Even, in light of that, I still wouldn't want socialized medicine because the quality of healthcare would plummet.