Why is socialism becoming so popular?

Because people are stupid, at least as Doug Casey defines it as a tendency toward self-destruction and the inability to correlate actions with their consequences.

Either that or they never lived in Soviet Russia. Socialism doesn’t work in the long run; the only way it sustains itself is by coercing the producers to provide for the consumers.

BTW: The popularity of a political ideology has nothing to do with “the market of ideas.”

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2 Responses to Why is socialism becoming so popular?

  1. Socialism isn’t just now becoming popular.
    It always has been, always. As Bastiat points out, man tends to move toward that which is the least hard. Getting the political class to steal for you is easier than working, so, as long as political theft is easy for the political serf, he will vote or go along with the theft.
    Only until it is more costly for him to steal than it is for him to work for his own way, will he change.
    Until then, when the pain of working is less than the pain of theft, theft, political or otherwise, will be the dominate culture.

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    • The Question says:

      Socialist ideas will always have their appeal, and earlier periods in American history certainly had moments of incredible socialism. What’s different now, I believe, is that whereas before socialist ideas had to be passed off under a separate political ideology, proponents no longer feel the need to maintain pretenses. Bernie Sanders is an open socialist; his politics aren’t vastly different from other Democrats, but they don’t refer to themselves as such. In the People’s Republic of Seattle, where I live, citizens elected an avowed socialist to the City Council, but the ideas she promotes aren’t far away from other councilmembers or the mayor.

      I compare this to fascism, for example, and this is where we see the difference. Fascist ideas are still popular, and many people promote fascism in the political arena; but none of them would call the ideas fascist and would fervently deny they themselves were fascists. However, if candidates at some point openly ran as fascists and promoted their ideas as openly fascist in nature, the politics wouldn’t be different so much as the acknowledgement that it really is fascism.

      This is the biggest change I’ve seen with socialism. People are embracing socialism as socialism, rather than under another name. For years, they tended to avoid this because it was seen as fringe due to its connections to the Soviet Union. But the term “socialist” no longer has the stigma it used to, even though socialist ideas themselves have been around for a long time.

      Perhaps the post could have been better titled “Why are people embracing socialism even when they know it’s socialism?”

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