"Socialism has done so much good for our country" said nobody, ever.
Socialism is dead and long may it remain so. It blighted the lives of millions in eastern Europe and anybody who wishes to argue for socialism should try speaking to someone who has lived under its evil grip.
With the collapse of the Soviet Union, "Socialism" as a philosophy became essentially "indefensible" in the west. During the 90s we saw almost all Socialist parties go under restructure and espouse a new Neo-Liberal doctrine with token "leftist social policies" called "The Third Way" or "Liberal/Democratic Socialism", even those at the Socialist International dumped socialist economic policy for that of the policies of the Neo-Liberals.
Now, more than ever we live in a world dominated by capitalism and right wing ideology. Corporations own almost everything, wealth disparity is essentially the highest it has been since the early industrial revolution and there are no serious leftist candidates in most Western countries.
Instead of fighting for their rights and against the exploitation of bankers, the working class has rolled over, allowed austerity to be pushed upon them while the stock market is doing better than ever and corporations are posting record profits and then the working class has the nerve to turn on itself for being "too lazy" even though it was the rich that caused the crisis and have been exploiting everyone.
Marx was right in that history is a series of struggles, Marx was right in most things, but in 2013 what we are seeing is not Proletariat on bourgeoisie, but "middle class" proletariat on lower class precariat while the bourgeoisie sit back and laugh.
Socialism is really about the relationship between citizens and their government. The idea is that the government, as an agency that represents the people, is the best instrument through which equality can be established. This premise has been found to hold promise theoretically (and ideologically) but not empirically. The best arbitrator of equality is the market; it allows for the best opportunities for growth, which is the instrument through which employment is obtained, and equality reached.
Socialism is a disease that destroys societies. Like all diseases, a cure is usually eventually found. Look how socialism destroyed Russia, how it strangles Chinese society, how it brought Germany to the brink of collapse and financial ruin after the First World War. Socialism is now rejected by most sane people who recognise that a citizen can achieve a decent standard of living on his own merits and not by relying on the state, nor by having the state control practically every aspect of his life.
Although socialism is now dead in UK, there is a lot of the unnecessary apparatus created by socialism still in place and that needs to be dismantled. To escape from these remnants of the nanny state, I emigrated to the Philippines and have never regretted doing so. Here in Philippines, there is no welfare state: here one either pays for what one needs or the government lets you rot. Nobody here ever complains about their lot, or queues up for state handouts (which do not exist here anyway): in the Philippines everyone just gets on with their lives without being blighted by the edicts of socialism.
Thatcher is so hated among the left because the neoliberal revolution that she and Reagan started managed to spread an ideology that has now become mainstream in contemporary politics. Private wealth creation over public inefficiency as taken as fact, and the call for nationalisation over big lumbering industries is only seriously considered by the old left clinging to dinosaur ideas.
The most disheartening of all for leftists is the arrival of the 'Essex Man' or 'Reagan Democrat', traditionally working class voters who represent a true aspiration nation. The caricatures created by the left only show their hate towards true social mobility from the bottom, conservatives and libertarians alike want a bigger pie for society, not what Winston Churchill called the 'equal sharing of misery.
These caricatures created by the left have only revealed their anger towards the ambitions of many, who realise that small government, low taxes and recognition of individual over the state is a sure recipe for liberty.
"Socialism has done so much good for our country" said nobody, ever!
Socialism is dead and long may it remain so. It blighted the lives of millions in eastern Europe and anybody who wishes to argue for socialism should try speaking to someone who has lived under it's evil grip.
Socialism has taken a hit in recent years with the fall of its representative party - Labour. The party in Scotland has seen a major decline due to the people feeling let down after the actions of NEW Labour. HOWEVER, The recent election Jeremy Corbyn is a clear cry from the Labour followers that Socialism is needed again in the party and there has been a rise in membership since his election mainly because the idea of old fashioned aggressive left wing politics excites people as it brings a new un-civilised challenge to the Conservative reign. The problem still lies in Scotland that NEW Labours procedures still exist with the current leadership style and ideas of Kezia Dougdale. Socialism wont die in Scotland or the UK but one will certainly out perform in my opinion it will be the UK Labour party who will eventually overthrow the Conservative reign (unless the Liberal Democrats reform completely ) and put Britain on a new course. The Scottish Labour party will continue to see the punishment of Tony Blairs leadership and the continued stubborness of Kezia Dougdale. New Labour is now New Liberal Democrats essentially.
In reality there are strong Marxist movements in Germany,Greece, Britain, France and Russia which may come as a surprise for a few. Furthermore, whilst the single-party, Marxist Leninist states of Vietnam,Laos and Cuba are well known, socialists are part of the ruling coalition in Nepal, Venezuela and ~ 10 more countries which are on Wikipedia if someone would like a look.
Despite the supposed takeover of the political mainstream by a strand of Neo Liberalism, Socialism encompasses a large verity of different movements, many who simply disagree over the method of attaining socialism rather than the goals is represents. Marx's analysis of dialectical materialism and historical development, mainly in the Grundrisse and Das Kapital continue to remain important to both the critique of capitalism, and the structure and Historical trajectory in its development. Without the socialist movement. Capitals development may not have provided the wealth or prosperity it does today. The recent financial crisis has prove that despite the emergence of Neo Liberal doctrine the economic inequality present will continuously rely upon debt and credit to satisfy the need for aggregate demand while keeping wage levels static to satisfy industrialists and financiers.
State capitalism as practiced by the Soviet Union is dead, I think we can all agree on that. Other more acceptable strands of socialism will continue to cling on on life support because of continual beatings from the popular, and extremely right wing, press.
The media has done and continues to do an exceptional job at distorting the public's perception of socialists not least by suggesting that there is only one form of socialism. A recent example of media bias can be found by comparing the deaths of Margaret Thatcher and Tony Benn. Both the statements that 'she was unpopular but she got the job done' and 'most people didn't agree with him, but' are much more contentious than maybe the media machine even realises.
Whether Margaret Thatcher got the job done is contentious. Are we really better off today than we were in 1979, or did she just create pockets of wealth and left most people worse off? Didn't she want to create a share holding democracy rather than an economy built on personal debt? To what extent is Thatcher to blame for the financial crisis?
And as for Benn. Did most people really disagree with him on most of what he stood for? Above all I remember him not as a socialist but a staunch advocate of democracy. Pretty much everything he stood for came back to the central tenet of democracy from opposition to the EEC to worker's councils. I don't think there are many people who want less democracy or who applaud the presidential style of the Blair presidency that shut Parliament and therefore people out of the democratic process.
But this is the subtle spin of the right wing media.
Nevertheless, socialism survives. Britain still has an NHS. We still provide free education up to the age of 18. Everyone over 18 can vote. We still have a welfare state. These are clear socialist principles that the right are unlikely to overturn for many years yet.
It is a form of historical inquiry, (Marxist History), it is alive and kicking in multiple countries such as Cuba, China, Laos and Vietnam, Many Socialist parties have been forced to adapt as the West has become increasingly right-wing as the public has been exposed to propaganda during the Cold War, however as more right-wing parties become more unpopular (for example, the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats in the UK), people are looking at different parties and thinking differently. Socialism is adapting and recovering, but not dead,
No, socialism is not dead, because it is still alive in many countries as a policy, and even in the United States as an ideal. There are even Congressmen who are socialist, like Barney Frank. Redistribution of wealth is still a common talking point for politicians, and socialism is gaining strength in the United States today.
People are always told that capitalism is perfect, but I have a surprise for you: it is not. Capitalism is a way for the rich to get richer and to make the poor poorer. See, capitalism relies on the fact that an economy works for everyone when there's lots of freedom, but this is ridiculous. I believe that when business gets too much freedom, they become powerful. In my opinion, a government is there to protect the people from the greed that the market has (something that's been proven many times). By setting rules for businesses, the government can make sure that employees aren't abused and morals still exist.
Socialism is not the perfect answer either. The radical, old definition of socialism is a complete distribution of wealth. I believe working hard and achieving things should be rewarded in the form of a nice job, and some wealth. However, not everyone has the ability to put the effort into getting a college degree for example. That could be because of a disability (mentally or physically) or because not everyone can afford to make it that far due to a lack of financial help. Capitalism doesn't support the idea that everyone has a chance at achieving something in life; it only provides that 'privilege' to the rich.
So neither capitalism nor socialism is the perfect answer to a society's problems in my opinion. I believe that socialdemocracy; a state where there is a form of capitalism that is criticized and regulated by the government, is the answer. In that way, people share more fairly, but working hard still contains a reward. This would decrease the amount of people living in poverty and makes that businesses are not the ones who decide what a government does.
Albeit it stared its journey as a political and economic ideology propagated by Karl Marx and Friedrich Angel, basically it's the mentality par se.
Most of us like to live and let live. We feel joy when we see other's laugh. We feel sorry when we see others in deep trouble. We like to help those who are in trouble. We don't help because the state has asked us to do so... But because we feel that we need to help.
America is the greatest socialist. It respects human dignity. It pays the proper price for one's labour. Socialism can't go with begger's alms, but with great values.
You cannot kill an Idea, as I believe someone has stated already. An Idea is infectious, it will spread and spread and you may be able to nearly eradicate it, but still, it will remain. I believe that France has even elected a Socialist as their president! Not only is it in France but also in China, North Korea, and Cuba. So no, even if it iss dying, it will not die.
Socialism will never die, it may take a while but there'll be more socialist uprisings. Big business and corrupt governments can only step on the proletariat for so long before he turns around a tears down their dens of greed. With rising debts, a growing wealth gap and a world economy in tatters from capitalist greed. A red revolution is likely in a large nation within 50 years.