Socialism is nothing but a luxury for the rich

Patrick Gibbons

After World War II, there was an explosion of new democracies setting up around the world, in Latin America, Africa and Asia. Although poor, these countries were happy to throw off the yolk of colonialism only to submit to the self-destructive forces of socialism.

Their economies stagnated, poverty increased, wealth was destroyed, and hunger and misery prevailed. Civil war and civil unrest were more common occurrences than peace and freedom.

The relationship between poverty and socialism skips past the minds of many. Today, Americans point to Canada, England, France or Sweden as model socialist democracies (even though they have opened up to limited government, privatization and free trade in the last two decades). These were rich countries before they socialized much of their economies.

Ever wonder why so few pointed to India as a model socialist democracy? Or how about Zimbabwe? Or any of the countries of South America from the 1950s to the 1980s?

Poor countries that socialize stay poor; rich countries that socialize may remain wealthy, but see their economies grow at an abysmally slow pace.  Socialism  introduces an economic stasis that privileges the already-wealthy. Having "got theirs," they are willing to sacrifice the economic freedom of all because their luxuries are now protected against change and competition.

This bears directly on why politicians in Nevada, despite the growth in gross state product (wealth) of more than $5,000 per person since 2002 (inflation adjusted), still want more government spending and higher taxes. They always argue it's for the children, the sick, the elderly and the poor (after all, who could oppose those people?).  But those people don't actually benefit from these policies.

Government spending doesn't alleviate poverty. Growing our economy does. Taxing our economy is a sure way to destroy its wealth-creating potential.

Government spending doesn't improve education. Education reform and parental choice do.

Government regulations don't improve health care for the sick, the poor or the elderly.  They make it more expensive.

While you are earning more money, big spenders just want more of it to spend on pet projects and patronage programs (vote for me and I'll make sure you have a nice government job).

Watch your wallets in 2009.  The big spenders are coming in force to seize what they can.