It is hard not to be alarmed at the worldwide re-emergence of the socialist disease. The other day, two of my staff turned up to work with T-Shirts featuring the faces of some of the 20th century’s worst mass murderers. It was done in a humorous attempt to get up my nose. I smiled wanly, but it succeeded.
They were semi-serious; both proclaim themselves to be socialists. They are not of course, they are decent people, but for some reason, despite hundreds of millions of deaths, socialism retains an element of cool for those ill-equipped (merely by virtue of age in the case of my staff) for digesting reality.
It is not only Stalin, Hitler, Mao and Pol Pot, many other lesser-light socialists have done their bit to prove that socialism does not work.
The mistake that most self-proclaimed socialists make is that at the most fundamental level they fail to realize that it is government that is the problem. As such, it can never be the solution. Whilst a measure of government control leads to a tolerable measure of economic dislocation; complete government control leads to complete catastrophe. As the great 20th century philosopher Ringo Starr so eloquently put it: “Everything the government touches turns to shit.” If the government ‘touches’ everything, then everything will ‘turn to shit’. If it took control of the Atlantic Ocean, there would be a shortage of salt water within a couple of years.
It cannot be stated strongly enough that governments can never take complete control of an economy without causing dislocation and malinvestment, leading to a breakdown of capital creation and, eventually, starvation.
My dear staff were oblivious to the distaste that their attire would have caused. Australia is a nation of immigrants, many of whom have lost everything in their courageous flight from one socialist horror or another. From the Cambodians and Vietnamese, to the East Europeans, few have any illusions about socialism.
There are, of course, economic reasons why socialism fails, but they require more intelligence than a real socialist can muster. But is its vile track record not sufficient testimony to its failure?
The history of the last 100 years has demonstrated that socialism is nothing more or less that a death cult.
How can that be cool?