Socialism

Socialism in five countries? Not really.

Featured image Bernie Sanders likes to cite Nordic nations as models of the kind of socialism he favors. That’s probably why he honeymooned in Sweden. Oh, wait. We have pointed out that the Nordic nations Sanders mentions — the likes of Sweden and Denmark — have turned away from socialism. Charles Lane of the Washington Post, relying on a report by JPMorgan Chase, presents the figures to support our view: Drawing on »

Who’s a socialist?

Featured image Robert Samuelson writes sensible columns about the economy for the Washington Post. His latest column, less sensible than usual, is a contribution to the growing body of mainstream media musings about what socialism means and the extent to which various Democratic contenders favor it. Samuelson argues that accusing Democrats of being socialists is a “slur” because “we are all socialists now.” What counts, says Samuelson, isn’t labels, but rather policy »

The Sanders manifesto

Featured image Bernie Sanders seems to me to embody the trouble with socialism. In his cranky attitude and crabby visage he gives expressive form to the spirit driving the thing. He takes the vast wealth produced by the citizens of the United States as a given. He wants at it with no apparent attention to the destructive effects of the socialist imperative. This week he purported to restate his manifesto (text here, »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll has a modest proposal in the form of JUNIOR YEAR IN HELL. She writes: I have recently seen a poll in which the majority of millennials claim to want to live under socialism. Bully for them, and don’t let the door hit you in the bum on the way out, kiddies. One of my favorite comedians back in the day was a (then) young man named Jake Johannsen. »

Life In the Socialist Paradise of Bernie Sanders and AOC

Featured image Venezuela is the latest chapter in the long story of socialist crimes against humanity. Venezuela reminds us how long a country can circle the drain, destroyed by socialism but still hanging on by its fingernails. Reuters, a liberal news source, has the latest on Venezuela’s long goodbye, but never mentions the fact that it is socialism that destroyed what once was one of the world’s richest countries: These days, its »

Family Ties

Featured image Really, I don’t understand the left sometimes. They’re very upset at the practice of “family separation” of migrant children at the border (a practice that goes back many years, keep in mind), but then I return to my Communist Manifesto to remind myself that a key demand for achieving socialism is abolishing the family. Nationalizing the children has been a staple of socialist visions at least since Plato. So when »

The Democratic Socialists Amongst Us

Featured image The Washington Post reports that Colorado’s former governor and current presidential candidate John Hickenlooper, appearing at the California Democratic Party state convention this weekend, criticized socialism—imagine that!—and was promptly booed by the audience: SAN FRANCISCO — Former Colorado governor John Hickenlooper found a way to stand out at a crowded gathering of California Democrats: He denounced “socialism,” and got booed. “If we want to beat Donald Trump and achieve big »

The Infantile, Superficial Left

Featured image If you are a glutton for punishment like me and you read a lot of leftist academic journals (but I repeat myself. . .), you discover quickly that for the left, everything is violence. Literally violence, especially free speech, but also capitalism of course. Violence is the instrument of racism and domination. Another peculiar feature of leftist academic jargon today is to talk about “bodies”—especially “black and brown bodies,” which »

CRB: A kinder, gentler Gulag

Featured image The Claremont Review of Books is of course the flagship publication of the Claremont Institute. I find in every issue an education in the true understanding of politics, public policy, and statesmanship. It is my favorite magazine. Purchase an annual subscription here for $19.95 and get immediate online access to the whole thing. The Spring 2019 issue of the CRB has just been placed in the mail. The editors have »

Maduro Forces Run Down Protesters

Featured image As Paul noted earlier today, Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó has taken to the streets with Venezuelan soldiers and others to try to bring about the final downfall of socialism in that country. But Nicolás Maduro, Hugo Chavez’s legitimate heir, is not going quietly. This video shows armored vehicles under the command of Maduro’s socialist government running down pro-freedom demonstrators: Novelist Brad Thor comments: This is why the government will »

Early Warning on Bernie

Featured image Item: I am aware of at least one early head-to-head poll, not yet public, that finds Bernie Sanders running best against Trump out of all the Democratic field—even better than Biden. Item: Sanders has hired the guy who wrote this story to work on his campaign: »

The uses of socialism

Featured image When it comes to the creation of wealth, socialism is worse than worthless. It is a great destroyer. For the promotion of equality by immiseration of the people who suffer under it, socialism is a powerful tool. But as a means of social control by the ruling elite, it is unparalleled. Yesterday’s long New York Times story by Nicholas Casey — “‘It Is Unspeakable’: How Maduro Used Cuban Doctors to »

Taxation, or Confiscation?

Featured image Time for another helping from Ludwig von Mises century-old book Socialism, many parts of which read as though he had Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and AOC specifically in mind. This time, on the idea for high income tax rates and wealth taxes: Not for one moment does it occur to the advocates of this popular taxation policy that direct taxes and taxes on trade may start a chain of events »

Caracas goes dry

Featured image Bloomberg has a vivid story on one of the incidental effects of Venezuela going dark: it’s going dry too. Its water system, designed to run on electricity, has now become at least intermittently inoperable. Bloomberg quotes Norberto Bausson, the head of state utility Hidrocapital in the 1990s. “As of this morning, this system hasn’t been restarted yet,” Bausson said yesterday. “The supply of water for the city is at risk.” »

Socialism and “The “Experts”

Featured image New York magazine has produced a list of the “best books to understand socialism” that is so stupefyingly inane that you wonder if this is intended as satire or a really big put on. But no—they are quite earnest about this list, because it was curated by “experts.” Among the best books to understand socialism, according to NY mag, are several by Marx himself (fair enough, if you really want to »

Venezuela Goes Dark

Featured image You probably have read that the lights have gone out in Venezuela. It isn’t really a surprise: a regime that can’t drill oil also can’t maintain and operate an electrical grid. Marco Rubio posted this extraordinary photo of Caracas at night on Instagram. It is reminiscent of the satellite photos you probably have seen of Asia at night, with bright lights everywhere, except that North Korea is entirely dark. Common »

Socialism as Deliberate Destruction

Featured image The economic illiteracy of liberals should never surprise us, despite repeated experience seeing liberals impervious to empirical findings about the perverse results of many liberal policies such as rent control and the minimum wage. It took me a while to see that when you point out to a liberal that a higher minimum wage has the effect of reducing the hours and income of low-skill workers especially at fast-food restaurants, »