Politics Magazine

What Socialism Is, Has Changed

Posted on the 18 March 2021 by Andy96

Learning from 20th Century History

The final form of Socialism in the USSR failed in the 20th Century.   The Soviet State owned the means of production for making products and controlled the markets for buying and selling those products.  The State was the employer in the USSR.   The State was all powerful and the authoritarian rulers saw change as limitations on their powers.  Therefore, they ignored the problems and doubled down on their methods.  China learned from the Soviet’s mistakes, realized change was necessary and created their own version of Socialism. They recently eliminated extreme poverty across China while also beating us at our own game of capitalism.  But the State of China still controls all levels of the economic system – a new form of the ‘old’ Socialism.  

Socialism is relatively young and evolving as different countries try out other versions.  The US not only has the lowest level of Socialism of the world’s democratic nations, it has used regime change around the world to stifle new versions of Socialism which guarded national resources from our capitalists.   Scandinavia and Europe have their versions of Socialism/capitalism. They kept certain national resources from corporate/capitalist control and required higher taxes.  Just watch Michael Moore’s Where to Invade Next.  

In contrast, we have Casino Capitalism where the “house always wins.”   Capitalism is hundreds of years old and has changed little over its life as it has spread around the world.   Capitalism crashes often, three times so far in the 21st century, and like the failed version of Socialism in the USSR, it’s flaws are never acknowledged or questioned.

Capitalism’s Cycle – Growing vs Cancelling the Middle Class

For some of us, we have lived through beneficial phases of a heavily regulated version of capitalism with greater, but still lacking, equality.  More recently, we have witnessed the removal of regulation, growing massive inequality, and the purchase of our political leaders to do the bidding of the capitalists. The capitalists have gained more and more tax breaks and their monopolies have grown without any anti-trust law enforcement.  Some of those who witnessed this expansion of inequality are luckily still part of a prosperous Middle Class.   Unfortunately, we are all now witnessing both a growing billionaire class, in terms of both wealth and numbers, and a growing Poor Class in terms of millions of citizens who can’t afford a $400.00 emergency or the loss of any of their jobs.  The GQP Cult is working hard to cancel the Middle Class

The cycle some of us have lived through personally, has happened before in these United States.  The first cycle began with unregulated slavery driven by the billionaires of the day. They started a civil war to keep slavery (inequality) from regulation that would destroy it. The response was three new constitutional amendments to protect and empower the newly freed slaves (more equality).  Next, America experienced the unregulated industrial revolution, another spurt of massive economic inequality and the Great Depression. Then came a push back by many new Federal laws grouped as the New Deal. They regulated corporations, kept taxes high, promoted unions, controlled banks, and again, selectively, protected and empowered citizens/workers and the elderly (more equality).

Capitalism’s Groundhog Day

These slow cycles between massive inequality and modest increases in equality over centuries and the more frequent economic crashes of capitalism are a long-term version of Capitalism’s Groundhog Day (CGD).   We just haven’t yet figured out how to get out of this ruinous cycle.  Plus, those who benefit most from this cycle, the capitalists, have the power and control over government to keep saving capitalism from itself.  These powerful capitalists eventually eliminate the regulations that restrain their greed and push the pendulum back to more inequality.

The differences between the failed Soviet Socialism and America’s Cyclic Casino Capitalism are:

  • An inflexible single-party State controlled the Soviet economy. Bureaucratic inertia restrained it and couldn’t change the downward spiral of cyclic failures. On the other hand, nimble, extremely wealthy, capitalists controlled the American economy. These capitalists manipulate the democratic State and keep re-setting our economic bedside alarm to re-start our generations-long CGD.
  • Both are based on a hierarchical system of non-contributing employers (Bureaucrats/Capitalists) and productive employees.
  • Both resist self-evaluation to end their damaging and resource-depleting cycles, and prohibit the consideration/teaching of alternative systems.

Ending Capitalists Control of the Economic Cycle

In America’s short history, wealthy capitalists have stopped regulated capitalism and creeping socialism. The result is popular unrest, revolt and a return to regulation – a cycle that needs to end.   So far, other socialististic nations have managed to keep capitalists from privatizing their social programs and maximizing inequality. However, the capitalists are working hard to acquire that great social wealth for their bank accounts.  These other nations, however, have an advantage over America – they have more than two political parties to limit corporate/capitalist’s vetos.

In conclusion, bureaucrats and capitalists will endeavor to keep and grow their power over both employees/citizens and their democratic governments as long as they control the economic systems.

We need to disempower the single-party bureaucrats and the excessively wealthy and extremely powerful capitalists who own the wealthy bureaucrats.  Within democratic political systems around the world, they do that through majority rule, multiple political parties, and elections – a democratic process.  What we need now are an improved democratic political system (no limitations on voting) and a more democratic economic system.  Both will promote and grow social systems to equally protect and empower all citizens/workers while also disempowering the capitalists and the bureaucrats they buy.

Adding/Enhancing Democracy To Grow The Middle Class

So, this democratic economy is now the latest incarnation of a socialist economy.  One where employees democratically control the means of production and the markets for buying and selling their products.    One that distributes profit democratically instead of concentrating it at the top.  One where employees never pollute their communities.   One that keeps employees’ jobs at home.  One where employee-funded welfare programs managed by a supportive democratic government provide a minimum survival foundation for all citizens. One that will avoid undeserved handouts for those at the top of some imaginary social hierarchy.

Democratic Socialism is about social responsibility for all citizens through expansion of democracy in both our political and economic systems.  

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