Where has Socialism Worked?

There’s a school of thought, popular among millennials that suggests that sacrificing your personal freedom and liberty is required in order to guarantee the freedom and equality of others, usually under the pretext of it being for the common good and that common good being socialism.

This approach was common in Socialist Russia and is still common today in China, Cuba, North Korea and Venezuela where the government plans every aspect of the economy; the results have been shoddy goods, nuclear disasters, long lines and a demoralized workforce. You see, the socialist governments of these nations simply can not predict economic supply and demand and the result of that is lack of needed products and an abundance of unwanted products.

Know this: your outcome is mostly determined by merit, by your hard work, studious study and application.

The Scandinavian countries and Denmark are often touted as socialist success stories however these nations have had to back off of full scale socialism as they found it was not economically sustainable. Today, the Scandinavian countries and Denmark provide a social safety net based on a capitalist economy in which free market economics works and most ownership of goods and services is in private hands.

What about the social democrats in Western European? Take for example the United Kingdom, France and Germany, all who have elected socialist governments who implemented national health care and other government entitlements. Well from 1947 until 2017, the United States paid for the defense of Western Europe, remember that the U.S. funded the Marshal Plan that rebuilt these war torn countries after World War II. So in essence, the United States funded the social safety net of Western Europe!

How’s that working out now? Western Europe is now having to pay a larger share of the NATO defense budget and because of their open border policies, African and Arabic immigration is out of control. The end result is an economic drain! Wait times for medical appointments are months and surgeries are delayed forcing people to pay out of pocket for private doctors!

I lived in the United Kingdom when Harold Wilson was Prime Minister and led a socialist government. I lived in Forest Hill, a little village outside of Oxford where the teenagers could not wait until they turned eighteen because they could go on the “dole” (welfare). I often heard young women say that they were having more kids because the government increases their entitlement check for each child they have.

If you are talking about government top down socialism with full nationalization of government resources and industry it looks like Venezuela, Cuba, China, Soviet Russia and Cambodia under Pol Pot. In other words think secret police, re-education camps, confiscation of personal property, lack of due process, travel restrictions and mass starvation.

Socialism says that you owe me simply because I exist. Capitalism, by contrast, results in a sort of reality-enforced altruism: I may not want to help you, I may dislike you, but if I don’t give you a service or product you want, I will starve. Voluntary exchange is always more moral than forced redistribution!

My question remains unanswered, where has socialism worked? 🤔

Goodnight Venezuela! 😴