October 21, 2020

Gen Z Conservative

The thoughts of a young conservative on political issues relevant to all ages

capitalism and freedom versus socialism and authoritarianism

Capitalism and Freedom versus Socialism and Authoritarianism

Introduction

There’s a contest happening across the world right now. It’s being played out in various cities and countries. The brave, capitalist protestors in Hong Kong versus the tyrants in mainland China. Trump supporters with jobs versus welfare-queen Democrats. Independent Britain versus the collectivist and increasingly authoritarian European Union. What is that competition? It’s a fight between capitalism and freedom versus socialism and authoritarianism.

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Author Richard Rahn of the Washington Times does an excellent job of identifying and examining that fight between capitalism and freedom versus socialism and authoritarianism in his article “Economic freedom versus the negative effects of socialism.”

As usual, I’ll include a few poignant quotations from his article and then give my analysis of the problem. The struggle between capitalism and freedom versus socialism and authoritarianism is one that has far-reaching consequences. As such, we need to understand it. Hopefully, this article will help you do so.




The Article on Capitalism and Freedom versus Socialism and Authoritarianism

First, Rahn points out how obvious it should be that capitalism is better than socialism:

Are you amazed about what your fellow humans conceive and create when it comes to technology — the iPhone, 5G, the Tesla, rockets that land upright after being fired, artificial hearts, etc., etc.? Are you also amazed by the willful ignorance of history and economics shown every day by the political and media class?…

When it comes to economic policy and political organization, it should be obvious to any sentient human that Switzerland has a far better model than Venezuela.  Many in the left-leaning media and certain politicians (such as Bernie Sanders) spent years praising the Chavez revolution in Venezuela, even though the economic and human rights disaster the country has become was easily foreseen by anyone with a basic knowledge of history. 

From: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/dec/16/economic-freedom-versus-the-negative-effects-of-so/

Then, Rahn questions why the British, who recently stood up for their freedom by voting for Brexit, would still support socialism and all the suffering that it entails:

millions of British still voted for the socialists, despite the fact that socialism has been an unmitigated disaster wherever and whenever it has been tried.

It results in death and despair, poverty and oppression — yet all too many buy the fraud rather than the reality. It now has been four decades since Margaret Thatcher was elected and saved Britain from its earlier socialist experiment.  Those voting socialist this time were probably either too young or stupid to remember the misery socialism wrought. 

From: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/dec/16/economic-freedom-versus-the-negative-effects-of-so/




Next, Rahn recognizes that economic freedom is increasing and identifies it’s benefits:

 Economic freedom has been growing despite many ups and downs and, as the world becomes more economically free, it also becomes more prosperous. Economic freedom is highly correlated with economic well-being, and increased life spans and happiness.  

From: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/dec/16/economic-freedom-versus-the-negative-effects-of-so/

Finally, after spending a few paragraphs talking about the idiotic idea of “Democratic Socialism,” Rahn succinctly states the danger of letting socialism happen here:

Technological progress tends to grind to a halt without the rule of law, due process, and other features and institutions of a free society. After the Constitutional Convention in 1787, Ben Franklin’s response to a question regarding what sort of government they created was “A Republic, if you can keep it.” Will we continue to pass the test? 

From: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/dec/16/economic-freedom-versus-the-negative-effects-of-so/

Analysis of the Struggle between Capitalism and Freedom and Socialism and Authoritarianism

I thought Rahn’s article was excellent as a succinct restatement of the benefits of capitalism and the dangers of socialism. In that respect, it’s much like Capitalism and Freedom or The Road to Serfdom.

Economic freedom and political freedom usually go hand in hand. There have been a few nations where that’s not the case, such as Singapore, but it’s usually true.

Why? Because, as Rahn notes, capitalism unleashes the individual. Yes, individualism has its drawbacks, which I describe in my review of Why Liberalism Failed, but it’s still better than collectivism.

On the other side of the economic spectrum, there’s nothing good about collectivism. Even the Pilgrims, who were deeply Christian and normally hardworking, couldn’t make collectivism work. It always fails and often leads to authoritarianism. Or, put plainly, it’s economic and political suicide. Bernie might want the US to be like Venezuela, but I don’t. Nor do most Americans.




Conclusion

Always remember that there’s currently a war between capitalism and socialism. Like our new Cold War with China, it might not be visible yet. But make no mistake, it’s certainly real. And it’s just as important.

So, what should you do? You should fight back against the socialist tide. Millennials and other lazy moochers are pushing for socialism. Real Americans aren’t because they understand the problems with welfare. Call out socialists on the flaws in their ideology. Especially, point out its authoritarian tendencies.

The booming Trump economy will shrivel if a socialist like Bernie Sanders is elected. Also, the tax cuts he recently passed, which are working quite well, would vanish into a morass of new taxes and paperwork. America can’t let that happen. We need to fight the socialist menace.

By: Gen Z Conservative


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