Today, I am going to look at Socialism, since there seems to be a lot of misunderstanding about what it is and how it works..
By definition, Socialism is a political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by collective or governmental entities.
In Marxist theory, Socialism is a transitional social state between the overthrow of capitalism and the realization of Communism. It is a system in which there is no private property.
Democratic Socialism, in which extensive state regulation, with limited state ownership, has been employed by democratically elected governments (as in Sweden and Denmark*) in the belief that it produces a fair distribution of income without impairing economic growth.
As you can see from just 3 paragraphs, there isn’t a simple, all-encompassing was of looking at Socialism. There is, however, one significant matter common to all three definitions above: government control.
In the first two theories above, the government owns and controls everything. In the third, Democratic Socialism, government may or may not own entities, but they control them all.
In all Socialism, individual freedom does not exist and/or is controlled by government regulations.
One might argue that in any system, freedom is controlled by government regulation. If there is a government, it will seek control.
The difference in the United States is that the control was defined by our Constitution, with amendments and court rulings. Laws and controls placed by the government must comply with the Constitution as interpreted by the courts.
Our Constitution is unique in world history. It was written by intellectuals the like of which we haven’t seen in government in a long, long time. It expressly protects individual freedoms, personal ownership, and it strongly suggests minimal national government control.
It is my personal opinion that Socialism, as defined in the first 2 paragraphs, is unconstitutional. The third, Democratic Socialism, leaves itself open to lawsuits challenging anything that infringes on individual rights and freedoms.
That it used to exist in some countries like Sweden and Denmark* interesting. Social Democracy failed and they reverted to a mostly Capitalistic model (see below).
But that is totally unimportant. Our country was established to be different from Europe and the rest of the world. It still is. We were called on twice to rescue the world from tyrants who arose in other forms of government. Thanks to a group of daring and intelligent men 243 years ago, we are still unique and strong. The only thing weakening us is more government control. We need less, not more.
*More on Sweden and Denmark:
The Danish economy is characterized by extensive government welfare measures and an equitable distribution of income. An aging population will be a long-term issue. Denmark’s small open economy is highly dependent on foreign trade, and the government strongly supports trade liberalization. An open economy means little government control – unlike socialism. Denmark is not a Social Democracy, it is a Welfare State.
Sweden is a competitive mixed economy featuring a generous universal welfare state financed through relatively high income taxes that ensures that income is distributed across the entire society, a system sometimes called the Nordic model. In 2014 the percent of national wealth owned by the government was 24%. In other words, 76% of the economy is privately held. This is not a Social Democracy, it is a Welfare State.
This is one man’s opinion. Thanks for reading and please play nice.