Argument: Capitalism is more successful than socialism historically

Issue Report: Capitalism vs socialism


Richard Ebeling. “The Failure of Socialism and Lessons for America.” The Future of Freedom. March 1993: “Earlier in this century, the Austrian economists demonstrated that socialist planning would fail. Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich von Hayek showed clearly and irrefutably that when private property was nationalized and market competition eliminated, economic irrationality would result. […] The arguments of the Austrian economists against socialism have been proven correct in every country in which central planning has been instituted. Whether it has been in Russia, Cuba, Vietnam, Ethiopia, Poland, or Mongolia, wherever the planning model has been imposed and has supplanted the market economy, economic disaster has occurred. The types and varieties of goods and services produced by the state have borne no relationship to the types and varieties of goods and services actually demanded by “the masses” in these people’s republics. Store shelves have been empty of the things people wanted; and they have been stocked with what no one desired. Resources and labor have been misallocated and wasted. And the customers, who are “always right” under capitalism, have been reduced to a life of long lines at state-retail stores and to a daily hunting for the essentials of everyday life in these socialist paradises.

[…] Since the Soviet experience in Russia was only beginning, Mises could still say in 1922, “As yet, it is true, Socialism has not created a society which can be said to represent its ideal. But for more than a generation the policies of civilized nations have been directed towards nothing less than a gradual realization of Socialism.”

During the last seventy years, the socialists had their chance to institute their ideal in many countries around the world. And in every case the result has been disastrous. Socialism in practice has produced tyranny, mass murder, poverty, corruption and cultural destruction. The rejection of socialism by the people of Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union must be considered the ultimate indictment of the ideology that declared itself to be the liberator of mankind.”

Michael Telzrow. “Socialism’s broken promises.” New American. December 25th, 2008: “Socialism, the Utopian economic and political system that promises equality, prosperity, and universal peace through the workings of a collectivist state, has repeatedly been exposed as a colossal failure. Its history, marked by failed societies and brutal dictatorships, is quite literally littered with the bodies of millions of innocents, and yet in the United States we stand on the brink of a socialist abyss, the edge of which looms ever closer as time passes. The conflict between individual and collective rights rages on, but despite socialism’s historical failures, it remains attractive to those vulnerable to its false promises of egalitarianism and economic equality. Instead of being relegated to its own proverbial “dustbin of history,” it continues to entice well after its failures and crimes have been laid bare for all to see.”