Social Democracy Is Not “Democratic” Socialism- Cutting through Bernie’s Confusion.

Social Democracy should not be slandered by comparison with "Democratic" Socialism.
Social democracy and Democratic Socialism are not at all, in any way, the same.
This is coming up more and more every day. Everyone in America, it seems, is completely confused about this, including me. I had to do all types of reading, just to start to figure out what these people are even talking about. I went ahead and did it, though, and from what I could glean from it, all these many headaches later, this looks like the place to start. These are two terms that sound a lot alike but are in fact completely different.
But what is the difference precisely? Is it really such a big deal what you call it? Does it really matter? That’s another easy one. Yes, and we can put the reason why into three short words, as a matter of fact.
The free market.

Where there is no free market, there is no freedom.

When we talk about socialism, we’re talking about a system of governance that has a fully state-planned economy. That means, in regular English, that the government won’t let the people engage in free trade, because of their insistence on imposing uniform equality of misery. They jealously hoard all power to one centralized hub, and from there the inevitable tendency is toward totalitarianism.
Wherever you find a free market, you find a place that socialism has not consumed. Under socialism, incompetent state bureaucrats are the ones investing national capital, and they always run it into the ground because they don’t know what they’re doing.
As a wise man I know once said, “All experiments in Socialism have failed and reverted into fascist dictatorship.”
The Personification of Bureaucracy.
The Personification of Bureaucracy.
He’s absolutely right, of course, and the people promoting this stuff know it as well as we do. They just don’t care. They want to blend the lines of truth as much as possible until things get to the point where the American people hear the word “social” and run.
The word socialism has always been divisive in America, and that has gotten worse instead of better as the idea has taken on more and more adherents. In recent months and years, this has done much to poison the waters for any change that would bring actual progressive ideas to the forefront for a serious American attempt to integrate into our system more of the changes we want.
But what about “Democratic” socialism? What’s the difference? The answer remains vague, and no matter how much Ocasio-Cortez may wish things to be otherwise, a wish list like the Green New Deal does not a political theory make. That means, in the parlance of us laymen, “democratic” is not a qualifier. It has no precise meaning and if it’s deleted from the sentence you’ll be left with the exact same thing.
Even the organization known as the Democratic Socialists of America itself will admit this.
“Most democratic socialists use the terms interchangeably”, said Joseph Schwartz, vice-chair of the D.S.A. “When Bernie is asked, ‘Are you a socialist?’ he doesn’t deny it, and he immediately talks about Scandinavia. He uses them interchangeably,” Schwartz said.
Getting back on track, what makes the social democracies so great are two basic but enormous factors. They have both a good social safety net and a free market. It keeps their economies above water and restrains any would-be dictators. On the other hand, take for an example the only place in the world that calls itself Democratic Socialist, Venezuela. That experiment has been a colossal failure.
To clarify even further, Democratic Socialism is socialism. Leftist media, unfortunately including some good papers, equivocate on this, but the facts show differently. The eight types of socialism are not interchangeable, and the reasons why are worth looking at; it’s just that we don’t have eighty years in which to do it for this particular piece.
For practical purposes, we can define a socialist country as being one with a fully state-planned economy. Social democracies don’t take things to that extreme and are not trying to. Although the two terms may sound alike, they are really different animals altogether, because of the free market.
The idea behind it is to temper liberal democracy, meaning in this context a system in which capitalism is not properly restrained, of its harshness with a social safety net, to keep citizens fed and alive with proper health care among many other things. The best minds of the left came together more than a hundred years ago and began to hammer out these ideas, ideas that guarantee all of us in the Western world the basic right to get help to stay alive.
We have some highly effective models to borrow from in the Social Democratic systems of other countries, like the vaunted Baltic states such as Norway or Sweden, whom Bernie rightly extolls for their excellence. We agree with him on all of that, or rather, he agrees with us, who he pillaged it from. It’s just that he then decided to muddy the waters to the benefit of no one but the right by adding the word “Democratic” to socialism.

“Democratic” Socialist systems, like the imaginary ones, dreamed up by Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, do not advocate the use of a free market. Real socialists will openly state who they are and what they believe in. They know it benefits no one to play make-believe about Sweden or Norway being examples of working socialism. 

They are not.
They are just as “capitalist” as America.
Sweden is NOT a socialist country!
Sweden is NOT a socialist country!
The prime minister of Denmark was annoyed by this claim of the Bern’s enough to weigh in specifically, saying that Bernie doesn’t understand what socialism means in the context of their system, but that did not even slow down the grumpy old socialist. He has done his best to confuse this issue more with each and every single passing day. This is bad for absolutely everyone.
Jacobin Magazine, the one serious socialist publication around, used a similar title for their piece as I’ll be using in this one, and makes the same point about the Nordic countries not being socialism.
Many others will weigh in to make this point by the time 2020 rolls around because right now Donald Trump is getting so much mileage off of slandering the latter using the former’s out-there wackiness. He used his State of the Union Address this year to transition into his new narrative as to why he deserves to keep being the president, that being to keep the country free from socialism. The socialists are ruining all our good ideas and making it very difficult to sell them to a public who is rightly-and generationally- wary.
After all this talk, one thing is true and has been true. Socialists and Democrats both agree that in order to keep our rights intact, the most vigorous political action has been and will continue to be necessary.
That will not be possible if the Democratic Party ends up getting hijacked by the radical left. We are the sole protection around for the people of America and the system that allows our fair nation to thrive.
But American socialists like Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez see the Democratic Party as being little more than a hermit crab shell they wish to occupy. They believe that America is broken and that it should be discarded. Our system is getting in the way of their brave new world, and so they want to run out in the streets and smash it up and light the night on fire with it.
Left-wing radicals setting fire to the campus.
Left-wing radicals setting fire to the campus.
They scoff at America as being outmoded and “capitalist”- as if the Nordic countries were not also capitalist. What “Capitalism” means in the context of a political system varies from one place to the next in its proportions, but one thing is always the same.
Again- The free market!
People think of capitalism as being a system of government, but all it really is is a power source. Even a purely socialist country is still going to trade. The Soviets did. Every person on Earth is engaged in the process of trade, even the few hunter-gatherers who are left around trade with each other, such as the Khoi Khoi people of Botswana.
The nomadic Khoi Khoi people, engaging in hunter-gatherer intergroup trade practices.
The nomadic Khoi Khoi people, engaging in hunter-gatherer intergroup trade practices.
The difference is that a communist/socialist (students of political science will be taught to use the term interchangeably by comparative political scientists) system will only allow financial business to be done through an official state apparatus. Those who run it are not well-qualified to do so. They’re utopian dreamers, not developers. This is why five million of the Soviet Union’s people died of starvation during Lenin’s first Five-Year Plan.
Ever since the Soviet Union fell, people have gradually forgotten about all the old anti-democracy qualifiers like “popular,” “guided,” “bourgeois,” and “formal” to modify “democracy”, although it’s true they’re rolling them back out. Their new trick was to come up with a way to use democracy itself as a qualifier, e.g. Power to the People plus socialism.
It’s an untrue slander.
Socialism and democracy are irreconcilably opposed because the former is not based on principles that are consistent with human nature and does not tend to satisfy the needs of citizens for happiness, a coefficient now measured by political scientists using something called the World Happiness Index- pretty cool idea! Deserving of an honorable mention.
At any rate, every time someone has tried to force socialism down the throat of a free society, they have caused a child-eating revolution followed by a dictatorship. Don’t even bother with the good old H.I. in Venezuela. Just turn on the news.
“Can we ignore the fact that none (socialist parties) has been successful in terms of its own dreams and designs, that not one has brought to realization the very purpose of its foundation?” Adam Przeworski, Capitalism and Social Democracy. (104)
Call me a skeptic, but it is very hard to believe that an organization calling themselves the “Democratic” Socialists of America can be unaware of all this. It’s much more likely they are lying on purpose and misrepresenting completely the ideas and concepts they are claiming to represent.
One thing, at least, has become very clear. These people should not be underestimated. They do not know what they’re doing, but they are rabidly serious about doing it. It has become necessary on every level to take a thorough look at these ideas and examine their doctrines fully. If we cannot show the people why the socialists are wrong, they’re going to beat us.
The first thing to understand, in my view, is that the people who codified socialism, especially the greatest of all socialists, Karl Johann Kautsky, did not believe that social democracy would ever bring about socialism, which was envisioned as a good option for people who are living in a society that has collapsed totally and utterly. Marx himself envisioned it as more, but it wasn’t Marx who created Marxism. It was Kautsky, and he was very clear on this point. Socialism is a post-disaster plan for any democracy that has collapsed. That’s all it is.
Until then, argued Kautsky, the workers will serve their own interest best by cooperating with the capitalists of their countries and fighting within their own systems for democratic reforms. His ideas for how to do this were developed into a system, and that system became what in Europe is called Social Democracy.
In America, we just call it democracy. As for fighting for the rights of the workers, and everybody else, that is what the Democratic Party does here in America. Therefore, if you really care about the people, if the so-called “masses” are really more to you than a shapeless concept to invoke for political clout, you had better stick with the Democrats and care about keeping our party healthy.
By now it should be clear that real socialists, which is to say social democrats, and we American Democrats, are mostly in agreement about what we feel is best for society, and also in the methods that we want to use to get things done. There’s no bad blood here!
This is what the nuts will not look at. They’re still mad that Bernie lost, and so they’re still mad at the Democrats who fight for them so hard. So they call themselves “Democratic” Socialists to sling feces at the whole shebang. Little do they appear to know, that in so doing, they are undermining their entire value system.
This whole disastrous confusion in terms was the work of Bernie Sanders, who did it on purpose to cloud the issue and to deliberately befoul the Democrats and their values. His Bots still repeat these same talking points, well- Robotically! That guy and his pack of shrieking brats are the most obvious example of controlled opposition there ever was.
 The key thing to keep in mind here, and what the point is, is why the divide on the left the Bernie Bots all caused was manufactured. At whose behest? To whose benefit, are these foreign actors ripping up our country? The Conservative Political Action Conference was dedicated to fighting the spread of socialism this year, but actually, they’ve been encouraging them all along.
The far left and the alt-right operated hand in hand together in 2016. Three top strategists in the anti-Clinton effort, two in Trump’s team (Paul Manafort and Rick Gates) and one in Bernie’s (Tad Devine), had been doing Vladimir Putin’s bidding fixing elections for over a decade. Bernie’s bromance with Trump is still going on all the while too. It’s like a threesome. “I like Bernie,” Trump said, with a huge and genuine smile.
You bet he does.
The thought of Bernie actually being his opponent makes Trump drool, as it does the rest of the right. Likewise Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. They desire nothing so much as to paint those two as the face of the Democratic Party. But why would that be the case, if they were genuinely interested in fighting socialism? Don’t they realize that if that happened, they’d be staring down the barrel of civil war?
It doesn’t make any sense until you come across the historical truth that the right has never considered communism and the far left to be the true enemy.
They consider liberals the enemy.
That is why they are supporting the socialists, and why they will continue. It’s why Bernie Sanders suspiciously benefits from so many things the Koch brothers do, such as the study they did last year suggesting we could afford his health care plan- which costs $9 trillion dollars more than the total worth of America! It is very convenient for them to have Bernie’s crazy plans for something to point at and say “See? We told you they were crazy!”
This is not new, either. This is why Wall Street financiers paid so much money to help along the Bolshevik Revolution.
Here’s another thing from this guy Przeworski I’ve been reading, my PoliSci professor recommended him. Wherever Communism (socialism) has been an option for the people, social democracy has failed.
That is to say, wherever the rich right has paid for a cliff the far left can run off of, they will usually do so, goaded to one extremity after the next by their more fanatical comrades. That is what they are setting up for.
The free market cannot, by necessity, exist wherever socialism is. The indispensable condition for socialism is the free market's demise.
The free market cannot, by necessity, exist wherever socialism is. The indispensable condition for socialism is the free market’s demise.
By now, it should be clear that this line of thinking is far more serious than the scoffers or the usual conspiracy theory (a term invented by the CIA to discredit their opponents) suspects would have us believe or suggest with their personal silliness. The socialists are insane, but the right is absolutely murderous. Those people will stop at nothing to beat us and keep power safely out of our hands because they know they can beat the socialists with the greatest and most ultimate ease. After that they can set up fascism in earnest- and fascism is itself a type of socialism. It fits together almost too well.
We all know how disingenuous and ruthless Trump and the rest of the fascist right can be; just this morning, we found out Trump was attempting to use his state power to interfere with the mergers of two private companies, AT&T and Time-Warner. Why? Because that means good things for CNN, and bad things for Rupert Murdoch of Fox News.
In addition to being a good example of how flagrantly Trump is willing to misuse his power, this incident is also a good example of what working socialism looks like. Far from getting rid of rich and poor, it merely sets up a new elite, based on party loyalty (complete with punishments reserved for those who do not enthusiastically demonstrate it, like Trump is doing to the merger for Murdoch), cronyism, and bureaucratic efficiency. Here, what Trump is doing is completely unacceptable. In a place like Russia, however, it’s just the way things are, and in the days of the Soviet Union it was official and lauded as just.
Angry socialist gathers his forces for battle on his own Party.
Angry socialist gathers his forces for battle on his own Party.

This is not what we want for America.

The difference between social democracy and Democratic Socialism is far more than merely semantical. One is an example of a working, logical, and perfectly viable way to administer the affairs of a given state. The second is a catch phrase aimed at a slander. The public needs to know, and as usual, the task of raising awareness falls to us.
As American hero G.I. Joe used to say to us Millennial Democrats when we were kids, “Now you know. And knowing is half the battle.”
It really is.
It really is.
God bless our dear good country.
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Battle on the Border- Why The Democratic Fight Against Wall Is Worth It.

The Berlin Wall of Shame is a mistake that should remain unrepeated.

“Something there is that does not love a wall”, said the famous American poet, Robert Frost, in his famous poem Mending Wall, and that seems like a good place to start, in discussing the proposed border Wall of Donald Trump, a completely unAmerican project if ever there was one. A constitutional crisis has come to our Southern border, latest in a long line of artificial disasters created by the illegitimate and infantile man who with Russian help stole the 2016 election.

Returning again to his use of executive power to bring chaos to the country and deflect national attention from his crimes, crimes which his old campaign manager Paul Manafort got a 19-year prison sentence recommended for last week, Donald Trump has declared a national emergency where there isn’t one, announcing his intention to try and build the Wall he’s been screaming about, twelve hundred miles worth of ugly mess and dark symbol on our entire Southern border.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff gave us the story Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “He’s pretty much daring the court to strike this down,” the California Democrat said. “It is going to be a real test for my GOP colleagues in Congress and their devotion to the institution.” Knowing the Republicans, they will roll right over for Trump.

It hardly bears repeating why this whole thing is moronic and despicable. Readers of this blog will most certainly already know. But what’s the other side of the story? How can the Republicans possibly justify this? What are the Fox News talking points? How could the fight be worth it in their ridiculous eyes? As they see it, here’s how the story goes, at least in the observations of this Millennial Democrats contributor.

The Wall is not immoral because it has a door. People will be allowed through according to legal channels. The current state of affairs wherein new waves of immigrants pass under bushes and across the desert to flock into our country by the hundreds will be ended. What Trump is doing is understandable, he needs it for his base, and above all, the fight is not worth it for the rest of us. It cost the country $7 billion.

Their solution? We should simply give up the fight and let him build the thing.

Let’s start out in the Aristotelian model, by conceding that there are aspects of truth to this. As always with Trump, like Charles Manson, he is very good at taking the truth and making a lie out of it. Another point to consider is that if the president of the United States wants a $5 billion appropriation for a pet project that’s important to him personally and partially fulfills a campaign promise, then he ought to be able to get it.

This is also true. The time-honored way for him to get it is to do what Trump promised above all else- come to the negotiating table, and make good deals. But back at the beginning of 2018, we were ready to cut a deal that could have given him the wall if in so doing we could have secured legal rights of citizenship for our DREAMers, the roughly two million Latino-Americans who were brought here by their parents as small children.

We, Democrats, came to the table offering a compromise involving wall money and a path to citizenship for DREAMers. Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer came up with a good plan and brought it to the table for him to sign. He almost went for it, too. It was immigration hardliners in Trump’s own administration who scuttled the deal, and that is what brings us to the core truth of this whole standoff.

The Wall is a completely pointless waste of time.

Everyone knows it, including the immigration hardliners. They themselves clearly don’t think the wall is particularly useful or important in the real world. If they really wanted a wall, they would go get a wall by offering something in exchange for it, like protection for the DREAMers or letting the immigrant children their thugs have hijacked out of the warehouses they’re keeping them in, or some other thing. Nothing has been offered and nothing will be, because the only one who wants this done is Trump. As for the aforementioned hardliners, they know the whole concept is idiotic, so they won’t offer to trade for it. It’s as simple as that.

That the Wall is pointless and not worth it is true enough, and it is also Trump’s fault. He himself immediately admitted, “I didn’t have to do this” and then went on to recite his worn out old stump speech for the umpteenth millionth time. This whole boring episode makes it clear that Trump is even more isolated in his position that what’s happened on our southwestern border constitutes any kind of a national emergency than he was when he first caused the #TrumpShutdown. The immigration hardliners and the sane center agree on that much.

But where considerations of silver and gold are all that kind of person sees, it’s only where we’re getting started.

For one thing, the belief that a wall alone will keep anyone out of anything is just plain stupid. It’s a ridiculous concept all around. It’s a medieval solution to a post-industrial problem. If they really wanted to keep immigrants from crossing the Rio Grande they would lock up the guys hiring these guys. If they didn’t know they could come here and get jobs easy, they would stay back home.

Trump cites the “migrant caravans” as a reason why this is a crisis, pointing to the disgraceful failure that is Venezuelan socialism and noting that the refugees heading out of that area are in desperate straits. He sent our troops to the border in response to one of these just before the midterms.

Now that was disgraceful.

Militarily speaking, there are no modern examples of a wall being a successful defending strategy, but there sure are lots of examples of their failure. We don’t have to go all the way back to when the Mongols hopped right over the Great Wall of China, nor do we have to make mention of the founder of Rome, Romulus, having killed his brother Remus for mocking the wall he’d built around the city. He laughed at him, just like we’re all doing at Donald, which should serve as an abject lesson of how ugly people can be in a state of wounded pride.

Fixed fortifications failed the French at the Maginot Line, which was the most heavily equipped fortress of a border there ever has been. The Germans simply drove tanks through the Ardennes Forest around it, and conquered France in a little over six weeks back in 1941.

Likewise, in 1944, American troops stormed the beach at Normandy and cracked Hitler’s vaunted Atlantic Wall in one day.

France proved our point again on its way to dragging the United States into Vietnam, by getting themselves annihilated at a fortress called Dien Bien Phu.

But above all others, it was a non-military barrier as this one will be, as ideological as physical, the border of the Berlin Wall that stood for many years as the world’s largest eyesore.

The premier of the Soviet Union, Nikita Khruschev, put it up across Berlin in 1967. It was the result of a fit of petty rage, his own pride wounded when he understood just how unpopular his communist system was, that many people were escaping to the free lands of the West through the part of Berlin controlled by the Allied powers.

This was because, above all else, people wanted to be free than live under the hells of socialism. We still do.

Someone ought to tell Bernie Sanders that, not that he’d listen.

The Berlin Wall came down in 1991, right behind the evil empire of the Soviet Union that was propping it up, and it’s nothing but a memory now. But the scars it has left on the psyche of the human race are very large and have yet to fully heal. Something there is that does not love a wall, indeed. Willy Brandt, the Social-Democratic mayor of Berlin, and soon to be chancellor, called it the Wall of Shame. The term caught on quick and was totally accurate. If Trump does build a new one, it will be revived.

In the end, it isn’t all a question of money and impracticality. Trump’s Wall is a symbol and an evil one just as much as the one in Berlin. As Nancy Pelosi said, it really was total immorality. To placate his base would be insane, since they are all insane, and there’s no sense in appeasing dictators or their bases anyway- because it can’t be done. They will take and take until there is nothing left.

As the old saying goes, and as we have written in the past, never give Poland to Hitler. If we rolled over on this Trump would be emboldened to try for the next wicked item on his unending agenda of corruption all the harder, not that that will ever happen. Walls keep people from coming together, and that’s exactly what the human race does not need. Our history is vibrantly sad already. It’s time for us to begin learning how to heal, not to begin inflicting new wounds.

All cancer comes from one form of inflammation or another. This has gone on for too long. It’s bad for the presidency, it’s bad for America, and it’s bad for the whole human race. The border must remain open, the government must remain open, and Donald Trump must be made to stop using his powers in this egregiously ridiculous and damaging way. America has had enough.

Making Tyranny Great Again-Trump Spends Week Assaulting Democracy.

Trump is a threat to our democracy.

Ever since the first few weeks that Trump took office, in which he created worldwide pandemonium by announcing via Twitter that citizens of seven countries were banned from traveling into the United States, America has seen itself disgraced by the conduct of its 45th president time and again.

Things have reached the point where it’s becoming normal. The bar of expectations set by our citizens for our leaders is having to be lowered by the day, and that is very dangerous to our democracy.

Most recently, it’s been his decision to start stripping people who criticize him of their security clearances, starting with former CIA director James Brennan.

Axios recently tweeted that Trump has become enamored with the unchecked powers of the presidency. “What he enjoys most about this job is finding things he has absolute power over,” said one source who’s worked closely with Trump.

Sources recently told Mike Allen that Trump  “got a kick out of pardons, that he could pardon anybody he wants and people would come to him to court him and beg him.”

60 former CIA officials have signed a letter responding to the removal of Brennan’s security clearance, pointing out that “The country will be weakened if there is a political litmus test applied before seasoned experts are allowed to share their views.”

Of course it will, but that is not what Trump cares about.

Trump’s attack on John Brennan is meant to distract us from his crimes, starting with the fact that he and his crew are almost certain to be proved guilty of agreeing to conspire with a shady Kremlin plot to help Trump win the 2016 presidential election.

Even at this minute, he is aiding and abetting Putin’s attack on the election by denying it was happening. He’s still doing it.

Meanwhile, his old campaign manager Paul Manafort’s trial drags on, because the jury is still deliberating. Why? There is enough evidence against that guy to throw him in the can for a million years.

The jurors must be at least as aware of it as we are, which is what makes it fishy that they’re still in there arguing with each other about it. T.S. Ellis, the judge, who has been threatened himself, says they’re scared. Who can blame them?

All the while, Trump is talking about how sad it is that a guy who stabbed America like Manafort did is on trial at all.

Not very democratic of him, but that’s the kind of guy he is.

The bottom line is that democracy is an impediment to Donald Trump. He does not find it useful, so he holds it in contempt. To him, the natural order of things involves debauched old white guys on top of every power structure, shouting orders and bossing everybody around.

Democracy has been in the process of rejecting this worldview for more than a hundred years. So why respect it? It’s an albatross around his neck.

If he can manage to whip up a sort of spit-polished authoritarianism, some form of rule that would retain a veneer of democracy while skewing the contest to ensure its result, that would be ideal for Trump, and also for his right-wing nationalist buddies all throughout the world.
Trump wants Erik Prince to build him his own private army. he was talking about building him a private spy network a few months ago. They want to privatize the war in Afghanistan.
He’s been talking up his dictator buddies, like Putin and Kim and Maduro, right from the start. As long ago as 1989, he was making public statements deploring the “lack of control” the Soviet Union had over its people. He wants to do whatever he wants to do, and he can’t  completely disregard the rights of others because he lives in a democracy.
How then to get rid of it?
In the clouded and foggy mind of Trump, these notions are not well conceived. They are murky impressions at best, addled further by the dementia Omarosa says he’s got. But other authoritarian leaders, like Putin, understand them very well and would like nothing better than to see them take place here.
America is the center of the current, liberal world order that has given us everything since the conclusion of World War Two, a struggle over these same ideas that nearly finished us. In order for that to change, America must abandon its values. That is why Trump, a man who values nothing he can’t stain his T-shirt with, was so favorable a candidate for other despots to support.
Going forward, we have got to come together strongly to affirm that we will not give up our values for anyone or anything. That is what the Resistance is for. Preservation of all we have in America depends on our success.

The Failure of Socialism- Bernie’s Legacy.

The Failure of Socialism- Bernie's Legacy.

Contrary to the ongoing narrative regarding the politics of our millennial generation in the media, not all millennials are in for socialism, or Bernie Sanders. Most of us are not. That narrative might have had some truth to it, once upon a time, but not anymore. Millennials have learned.

Hard and painful experience has taught us not to invest in a gambler, or his roulette table.

Since the upset victory of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez over New York Democrat Joe Crowley last month, there has been a lot of talk about this, and most of it has revolved around the question of socialism. The concept has come to be notoriously misunderstood, and most of the reason why is thanks to Bernie Sanders.

The prime minister of Denmark said it best when he pointed out that Bernie did not understand socialism in the context of Denmark; he could have added any other context and been equally right. Bernie didn’t understand socialism at all.

The Nordic countries have excellent social services, which to be fair were adapted from socialist theory. Governmental regulation and social work are both taken seriously there. But their economies are free-market, which means that they are capitalist. Completely capitalist.

The only countries that can legitimately lay claim to being socialist are those countries that have fully planned, one-size-fits-all, Big-Brother-is-watching style economies. Like Venezuela.

The mixup comes from a confusion over two terms, Social Democracy and Democratic Socialism. They sound a lot alike, but that is where the similarity dies.

Tempering the harshness of laissez-faire capitalism has been a good thing for the world, and is known as Social Democracy. Every civilized country, including the United States and Sweden, uses a type of social democracy to govern its people.

Bernie switched around the order of the words and called it Democratic Socialism. No one knows why Sanders insists on using that term, but in our opinion, it’s because he enjoys getting the attention that comes with being contrary and starting arguments all the time.

People have been going around repeating it ever since he first began, but in fact, the phrase doesn’t even have a precise meaning. Thirty seconds worth of using Google is enough to tell you that.

Socialism has been floating around for 188 years, since 1830, and not once in that time has it led to a successful society. Aspects of it have been implemented in normal societies and its influence in putting the social welfare of workers on the agenda is important.

As an overall idea, though, it has been a disaster, as nearly every country to have tried it has ended up with the goose-step and the concentration camp.

Back when it was just an archaic, discredited system, I thought it was kind of neat. I used to think about it while jogging. It was kind of like a Sudoku puzzle for me.

Once people started to take it seriously again, though, I stopped musing and started figuring out how to explain the inescapable truth- that socialism is a disaster, completely incompatible with human freedom and dignity.

Why can’t we learn from all the times it failed? All the horrible revolutions that produced even worse regimes? The thousands who had to die because of someone who wanted to apply ideas from a political theory to the real world?

Mark Perry, the creator of the popular economics blog Carpe Diem, referred to socialism in 1995 as “The Big Lie of the 20th century”. He reported in 2016 that he was shocked at its resurgence, such a short time after the fall of the Soviet Union, the so-called “Worker’s Paradise”.

“I perhaps assumed the failures of socialism were so apparent and obvious it would be forever considered only as a discredited system of the past, and never as a viable option going forward into the future!”

“Given the recent resurgence of socialism, especially as it is now being embraced by young Americans, I thought it might be a good time to review why socialism: a) failed in the 20th century, b) is failing in the 21st century (e.g. Venezuela, see photo above), and c) will always fail. And that’s because it’s a flawed system based on completely faulty principles that aren’t consistent with human behavior and can’t nurture the human spirit.”

This has always been the case. People are people. And while the socialists do join us in believing society can do better in many areas than it is doing now, the transcendental human change required as a prerequisite for socialism shows no sign of taking place next week.

Socialism does not mean Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders. It only begins there. It ends with Hitler and Stalin. Going forward, we’ve got to raise awareness about this until people understand. Socialism is a universal failure.

Thebalance.com did a piece called “Socialism and its Characteristics”, telling us that there are eight types of socialism, but really, the distinctions are semantical. There is only one type of socialism. The evil kind.