Democratic Socialism And Regular Socialism Have The Same Goal

Friday, February 1, 2019
By Paul Martin

by Anthony Mueller via The Mises Institute,
ZeroHedge.com
Fri, 02/01/2019

The longing for the socialist dream comes in part from the great success of capitalism as an engine of prosperity. From the nineteenth century onwards, the entrepreneurial economy created prosperity on a scale that had never been seen before in history.The socialists, however, believed economic success would become even greater in a society of egalitarian redistribution. The socialists expect that under their rule, the economy would become more productive and society more just.

This illusion of obtaining prosperity and justice under socialism was already evident in the Communist Manifesto of 1848. In their pamphlet, Karl Marx and his sponsor Friedrich Engels enthusiastically praised capitalist achievements:

“The bourgeoisie,” they declared, “has been the first to show what man’s activity can bring about. It has accomplished wonders far surpassing Egyptian pyramids, Roman aqueducts, and Gothic cathedrals; it has conducted expeditions that put in the shade all former Exoduses of nations and crusades.”

During its rule, the bourgeoisie

has created more massive and more colossal productive forces than have all preceding generations together. Subjection of Nature’s forces to man, machinery, application of chemistry to industry and agriculture, steam-navigation, railways, electric telegraphs, clearing of whole continents for cultivation, canalization of rivers, whole populations conjured out of the ground – what earlier century had even a presentiment that such productive forces slumbered in the lap of social labor?

Yet, according to Marx and Engels, the capitalist system is doomed, and private property stands in the way to a perfect society: “the theory of the communists may be summed up in the single sentence: abolition of private property.” Doing away with private property implies the “abolition of bourgeois individuality, bourgeois independence, and bourgeois freedom…”

For Marx and Engels, the bourgeois family remained a fundamental part of liberal and capitalist. Thus, under communism, the “bourgeois family will vanish along with country, nationality, and religion.”

The Socialist Plan
To achieve these aims, the Communist Manifesto demands the following measures:

1. Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes.

2. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax.

3. Abolition of all rights of inheritance.

4. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels.

5. Centralization of credit in the hands of the state, by means of a national bank with State capital and an exclusive monopoly.

6. Centralization of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the State.

7. Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the State; the bringing into cultivation of waste-lands, and the improvement of the soil generally in accordance with a common plan.

8. Equal liability of all to work. Establishment of industrial armies, especially for agriculture.

9. Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual abolition of all the distinction between town and country by a more equable distribution of the populace over the country.

10. Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of children’s factory labor in its present form. Combination of education with industrial production”

Under socialism, individualism must make way for collectivism. Then the state will replace private initiative. Communist rule also requires the centralization of money and credit in the hands of a state and production must follow a central plan. Public education comes with the obligation to work and its combination with industrial production.

On the way to achieve these aims, “the Communists everywhere support every revolutionary movement against the existing social and political order of things… They openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions.”

From Dream to Nightmare
The motivation for this revolution is not hard to understand. Who would not want a society that guarantees prosperity for all but does not ask for an equivalent contributory effort? Socialism promises equality and that everyone would receive what he needs — whether one adds little or nothing to produce the goods. The fatal attraction to socialism results from the wishful thinking there could be an economic system, which would be as productive as capitalism and come with equality. The problem with this promise is that it does not work.

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