NO, ACTUALLY SOCIALISM HAS FAILED, JUST READ ON. Greece is bankrupt, living week to week on handouts from ever impatient and angry EU that wants Greeks to start living within their own means. Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Italy are close behind in the queue at the gate of Bankruptcy-ville, England and France are also walking on the same road but are still at some distance. And the latest to turn to that road is USA. All these countries are among the most developed, industrialized countries with almost universal literacy, excellent governance, rule of law and a centuries old liberal tradition. So what went wrong?
Was Marx right all along? That Capitalism is destined to fail? To be replaced by socialism?
Quite a few articles appeared soon after collapse of the Banks in the US in 2008 claiming precisely that. We can expect a deluge of such articles, programmes on TV etc. etc. in the tone We-Told-You-So in the months and years to come as Europe and later North America, Japan fold. The Karat pair, Arundhati Roy, D Raja and all the assorted Jholawalas are going to have tough time in choosing which TV to appear on, which newspaper to grace with their columns.
So, was really Marx right?
We go through the Left controlled education system. Hardly anything is taught about what happened in the Western world in the last Century. In the early decades of last century the idea that State must guarantee citizens a minimum standard of life irrespective of whether they choose to work for that or not took firm root in the ruling classes of the West. Some countries like Russia saw outright seizing of power by the people who subscribed to these ideas. Others thought that they can remain democratic and still follow the ‘good aspects’ of socialism. Both Italy and Germany were democratically taken over by socialists. (Yes Nazis and Fascists of Italy were both socialists- a fact brushed under the carpet by the Leftists). Even as England was fighting the Second World War against Socialists, politicians there were busy in legislating ‘good aspects’ of socialism. British National Health Service, the mascot of democratic socialism everywhere was enacted into law in 1948 !!!
So it came to be accepted that economic socialism and democratic politics was the solution Mankind was looking for, as a permanent solution of hunger, homelessness and Want. Once the principle was accepted that the government could interfere in the economic activity and commerce of a country to get the desired outcome of elimination of hunger, homelessness, poverty and Want, it turned out to be a slippery slope. It further got compounded by the acceptance of another invidious principle-that government can tax those who have money and transfer that money to those who don’t have it. So people started voting for politicians who would impose ever more regulation on the market, increase taxes on the rich and legislate ever more freebies for the ‘poor’. Once it became respectable to eat without working, more and more people stopped working and signed in for the “Welfare”. So the developed economies now have free healthcare, old age home, old age pension, unemployment allowance, affordable housing, all funded by governments. Once people discovered that they don’t need to have children to be taken care of in old age, they also stopped having children. Soon, non-marital sex also became respectable, so people stopped either marrying or staying married. Every ‘scheme’ would start only as a ‘trial’ for a small segment of population with a meager entitlement. From there electoral politics would take over-rivals politicians would promise same entitlements to the bigger and bigger segments of population and size of entitlement itself would increase after each election cycle.
As a result of the destruction of family as described above, now the Socialist Democrats have discovered to their horror that there are not enough taxpayers to fund their beautiful entitlements. Though world is discovering this now but this situation had come about, about two decades ago. But one more factor prolonged the freebies circus till now- that was the guarantee of security of Europe by the US military. (The US has military bases all over Europe). So the military expenditure could be cut and savings could be diverted to Welfare. But as I have shown above, even savings so effected have become inadequate and European countries now have no militaries either. If Argentina were to take Falkland again tomorrow, The UK would be able to do nothing except getting a condemnatory resolution passed by the UN and EU.
Politicians in the US have all along been on the same path, Republicans to a comparatively lesser degree than the Democrats, but both agree in principle that State must regulate commerce and take care of sick, homeless and hungry and unemployed. The 2008 Banking collapse came about because the government of the US forced banks to give home loans to ‘needy’ without down payment and without collateral, and without due diligence as to repaying capacity. So people bought homes they could not otherwise afford, and because of destruction of industry because of ‘regulations’ brought about by various ‘fairness’ measures and Environment saving requirements, could not find jobs which could have enabled them to repay the loans.
Just one example. In Greece you can retire from your private employment with government pension at 50 years of age, yes 50, if you work in a hazardous job, (otherwise you work till 58) and hairdressers qualify as the people who work in hazardous jobs. Over 440 jobs qualify as hazardous for the purpose of this rule. Similar rules mandating freebies for citizenry without they having to raise a finger exist in all developed countries. So people have really got liberated from Want- nobody wants to work, nobody wants to marry, nobody wants to have children……and now, nobody is there to pay taxes to fund all these programmes.
After cutting on military expenditure, to fund ever more entitlements, politicians started borrowing. Now even the debt levels have reached the level that they can no longer be hidden from the world. So people who loaned money to these socialist thugs are panicking and are demanding their money back. And now even the US has been forced to cut its military expenditure to divert money for freebies! So we are at this point:
Not enough tax payers, as people borrowed money in the name of next generation and then went on to have no children, nobody to lend more money, a citizenry having forgotten to work, military defunded, no children to carry the society forward, huge old-age population entitled to unaffordable freebies still around.
Even the Democratic Socialism has bombed- big time.
Leftists/socialists have nowhere to run and nowhere to hide.
Of course with their control of media and academia, they can keep the facts hidden, but they can never change the outcome-total societal collapse and destruction of some of the most advanced and prosperous countries in the world brought about by the Socialist Welfare State.
Destruction because, as Greece and England (and Spain and the US to a lesser degree) have discovered, entitlements are as difficult to roll back as unscrambling an egg. Citizenry there is openly saying-keep my Welfare cheque coming, how you arrange money we don’t care or bother, and if you don’t we would burn down the cities.
“Who doesn’t work, doesn’t eat” is the most basic precept of a functioning society. Once it is given go by, destruction and collapse can only be postponed, cannot be averted. “Children are the responsibility of parents and parents are the responsibility of children” is another equally basic and even more important contract if a society has to survive. And making a house for yourself and arranging your own food are the responsibilities that force people to seek work, to learn skills, to save and to keep peace and order. Any involvement in these of State would sooner than later destroy the society. Without family there can be no society, without society there can be no country.
So when the jholawalas write those op-eds or hold forth on TV, declaring Capitalism has failed, remember- actually the Socialism has failed, and taken with itself down the most advanced civilization on the Earth-The Western Civilization.
Closer home we are also on the same path, crazily enacting one entitlement after another even as before our eyes these freebies have bankrupted far richer and more developed societies. In fact only Sardar Manmohan Singh is putting up some resistance, otherwise we would enact free petrol, free vegetables, free education, free healthcare and free homes to ourselves tonight itself.
There are no good aspects of Socialism. “In any mixing of food and poison, only death will win. In any compromise between good and evil, only evil will win. In any mixing of Capitalism and Socialism, only Socialism would prevail.” And once Socialism prevails, bankruptcy of the country, destruction of family, collapse of society and as a consequence, destruction of the country is assured, few decades down the line.