Back to basics: socialism doesn’t work

Tom Bethell:

I worry that by the time Obama is through with us, the U.S. will be a second-class country. A lot of people feel the same way. A similar concern has been in the back of my mind for years. In the Carter era I also worried about the fate of the country, but I have to say that the hazards seem far greater now.

After the Berlin Wall came down I thought the obvious lesson—that socialism doesn’t work—would penetrate the skulls of our domestic intelligentsia. But somehow it never did. They never regard a limit to government expansion as a desirable thing. Nothing seems to have been learned from the fall of Communism—the great history lesson of the 20th century.

Hit the link and read it all, of course.

Reminds me of last summer when my dear friend Randi was visiting from West Virginia, where she works as a school teacher. We were walking in the mountains and discussing Obama, who was then but a candidate. I said he was a socialist. I think she said, “what’s wrong with that?”

I said, “socialism doesn’t work?”

“Yet,” she said. “Hasn’t worked yet.”

I didn’t take the time right there to explain how and why it isn’t simply a case of doesn’t work, but really a case of can’t work. And why socialism is immediately and explicitly destructive of human values. That destruction also always rolls over from the economic sphere into the cultural and social sphere. Socialism isn’t just a failure, and destructive. It is a disgrace. That is not to say that the free market is without its failings, but it is not a failure, and it is not explicitly destructive of human values, nor implicitly a disgrace.

There is no perfect world, so nothing comes out perfect. But it’s a sure thing that something that promises free stuff for everyone and implies utopian results will be miserable. And that is the record of socialism. You could look it up, as Casey would say.

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