Why Socialism Fails

Alissa Butcher

Undergraduate student at Northwood University

Alissa Butcher
August 17, 2022

Why Socialism Fails

The following is part of the In Defense of Freedom essay series by Northwood University students.

Socialism fails. Every. Single. Time. There is not one example of true socialism that has been enacted successfully, instead, it is the opposite. Capitalism is proven to be the most successful form of government and when you take that away you take away the foundation of America. Socialism destroys countries and ruins lives, whereas capitalism saves and is the cause of countries prosperity. Increasing government control not only eradicates government control but also crushes economies.
Socialism is defined as the full ownership of the means of production. Capitalism is based on the theory that incentives matter Perry, M. (2019, August 28). Every product or service you buy requires some form of production. Companies will then price these products and services at what they believe will make them the most profit. Under socialism, the government tries to regulate and take over the means of production. This means that the government would be taking over the companies’ job of regulating what the price of the products and services are. The profit incentive is gone, which is what makes a free market work. The government can barely run the DMV, let alone the market of the United States. They would not know how to price anything correctly and they would not care. No motive for the government, the entity that prints the money and determines the interest rates, to price goods in the best interest of the business, because again, there is no profit incentive Perry, M. (2019, August 28).
If you are not convinced yet, let me provide some evidence. Every country socialism has been introduced to has failed. Not a single socialist country has increased the state of well-being of it’s citizens or even helped the economy. When India gained independence in 1947 it quickly became a socialist nation. This lasted for 40 years are resulted in only hunger and poverty spread across the country. Eventually, the country looked for inspiration in economist Adam Smith, also known as the father of capitalism (Kilcoyne, M. 2018, July 26). India now has the largest middle class in the world.
Another example of socialism absolutely demolishing a nation is Spain. Jones, T. (2018, September 10) reports that the country went from a growing middle class with a budget surplus to one with disintegrating wages due to the failure of the Spanish banks. The socialists nearly doubled the country’s debt overnight by launching the most substantial stimulus package in the European Union. Looking at Biden’s America we can see first-hand the negative impact of unnecessary spending and excessive stimulus packages. In Spain, taxes were also raised and unemployment reached depression levels. The economy was obliterated. India and Spain are just a couple of the hundreds of examples of socialism ruining a country, which ultimately can be saved by capitalism.
The effects of socialism on a country are nothing short of death. According to Follett, C. (2016, October 19), “Recent reports that infants now
die at a higher rate in Venezuela than in war-torn Syria were, sadly, unsurprising – the results of socialist economics are predictable.” On top
of this startling statistic, infant mortality rates have continued to fall almost everywhere else and declined even faster in countries with more freedom and stability. This can be attributed to the starvation of the citizens under socialism. It is no surprise because the people do not have access to food given the lines they have to wait in for hours just to get a loaf of bread and hopefully some milk. All in all, socialism kills.
Supporters of socialism look to the Scandinavian countries for support, claiming they don’t want “repressive socialism” like in Russia or Cuba, but instead “democratic socialism” like in Sweden. However, Sweden is far from being a socialist nation. The nation did have a period where they owned the means of production, were heavily taxed, and had high government spending; causing the economy to decline. Take from Reason TV (2018, October 23), Sweden immediately cut public spending, privatized public transportation, abolished inheritance taxes, and sold state-owned businesses. The results: an impoverished nation was developed into one of the world’s richest countries. These countries truly are not socialist at all, instead their successes come from free markets. They do have higher welfare and taxes than the U.S. but when it comes to free-trade and markets, Sweden is even more free-market than the U.S. Although Sweden looks like it taxes the rich, the truth is that the people with below average income pay up to 60% in taxes. Reason TV (2018, October 23)
Critics of capitalism continue to claim that capitalists are greedy people who only care about themselves and money. We have more socialists serving in congress than ever before. Take a look at the car these senators drive, ranging from Cadillacs to Mercedes. It is thanks to capitalism that anyone has the potential to purchase these vehicles. With socialism, they would be the only ones who could ever have them, Turning Point USA (2020, November 27). No socialist will admit that capitalism has been the most effective way to eliminate poverty. Between 2000 and 2012 the rate of absolute poverty in the world fell by 50% Harsanyi, D (2018, July 27). We must reject any form of socialism because in all cases, with socialism comes the destruction of economies and starvation of citizens.
The direct result of capitalism is a flourishing country as opposed to a world of poverty and debt with socialism. People like Bernie Sanders are the reason that many Americans, especially young ones, are brainwashed with the fantasy of socialism being beneficial. They have the idea that socialism is just another type of government system. The truth must be put forward about capitalism, and the better life it has brought to billions of people, the diversity and freedom of choice it celebrates, and the rejection of big government that always leads to the failure of leadership.

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