Capitalism, Issues, Socialism

A Horrifying Socialist Future for America?

50

The debate over socialism shouldn’t even exist. Everywhere big government has been tried, it has failed.

And we have reams of evidence that free-market economies dramatically out-perform statist economies.

Yet the siren song of socialism still appeals to a subsection of the population, either because of naiveté or an unseemly lust to exercise power over others.

So let’s once again wade into this debate that shouldn’t be happening.

Writing for the Dallas Morning News, former Texas A&M economics professor Svetozar Pejovich explains that adding “democratic” to “socialism” doesn’t change anything. What really matters is that Sanders and his supporters want bigger government. And that never ends well.

Sanders’ policies…are…incompatible with the American tradition of self-responsibility, self-determination and limited government under a rule of law. …putting those premises into practice requires the acceptance of two institutions: the redistribution of income initiated and monitored by federal government, and the attenuation of private property rights.

And these policies don’t lead to good results, something that Professor Pejovich understands very well given that he was born in the former Yugoslavia.

Of course, the lunch is not free. The short-run consequence of redistributive policies is erosion of the link between performance and reward, which, in turn, reduces economic efficiency and the pie available for redistribution. The long-run cost is the transformation of the American culture of self-responsibility and self-determination into the culture of dependence on the state. …Sanders’ democratic socialism bribes people to voluntarily accept the erosion of private property rights…via laws and regulations. Those law and regulations (such as reducing the right of employers to fire workers at will, giving tenants rights at the expense of apartment owners, granting special privileges to some rent seeking groups, etc.) transfer some decision-making rights from owners to public decision makers, or non-owners. …In the end, the attenuation of private property rights impedes the flow of resources to higher-valued uses and reduces economic efficiency of the economy.

Allow me to augment Professor Pejovich’s analysis by elaborating on how these policies hurt the economy. The redistributionism doesn’t lead to immediate disaster, but it inevitably lures a larger share of the population into dependency over time and the higher taxes required to finance the growing welfare burden gradually erode incentives for work, saving, investment, and entrepreneurship. The combination of those factors slowly but surely dampens the economy’s growth. And as I’ve repeatedly explained, even small difference in growth have enormous long-run implications for a nation’s prosperity.

And there comes a point, particularly given modern demographics, that the system breaks down.

The erosion of property rights has a similar effect, largely by causing a reduction in both the level of investment and the quality of investment. And since every economic theory agrees that capital formation is a key to long-run growth, the net effect of “democratic socialism” it to further weaken potential growth.

What’s especially frustrating is that leftists then point to reduced growth rates as an argument for even bigger government.

I’m not joking. Robert Kuttner of the American Prospect argues that young people are attracted to Sanders because their economic outlook is so grim.

Bernie Sanders has…broad and enthusiastic support, especially among the young…voters who say they are attracted rather than repelled by Sanders’s embrace of socialism. …this is the stunted generation—young adults venturing into a world of work, loaded with student debt, unable to find stable jobs or decent careers.

I basically agree that the economic situation for young people is tepid, but I’m baffled that this is an argument for bigger government since the statist policies of both Bush and Obama deserve much of the blame for today’s sub-par economy.

In other words, we’re seeing Mitchell’s Law in action. Politicians have adopted bad policies that have led to stagnation and now they’re using the resulting economic malaise as an argument for even bigger government. And young people, who are among the biggest victims, are getting seduced.

I’m tempted to simply say young people are too stupid to be allowed to vote, but instead let’s take a serious look at why so many of them are misguided.

Christine Emba of the Washington Post has a column pointing out young people openly embrace socialism.

…it seems that socialism is cool. …socialism does seem to have become the political orientation du jour among voters of a certain (read: young) age. …A January YouGov poll asked respondents whether they had a “favorable or unfavorable” view of socialism and capitalism. While capitalism rated significantly higher overall, those younger than 30 gave socialism higher marks: Forty-three percent viewed it very or somewhat favorably, compared with only 32 percent for capitalism.

The problem is that both Ms. Emba and a lot of young people apparently believe the nonsense spouted by people like Robert Kuttner. They actually blame capitalism for the economic weakness caused by government intervention.

…simple economics have pushed a younger generation of voters to embrace what used to be a dirty word. The past 10 years – for many millennials, the formative years of adulthood – have eroded the credibility of economic [classical] liberalism. The financial crisis and recession weakened youths’ faith in markets… Yet they were also told that the solution to the these problems was more [classical] liberal capitalism. But those solutions haven’t delivered… Underemployment, excessive debt, out-of-reach health care and delayed life goals are young peoples’ defining concerns, and the traditional assumption – that free markets and limited state intervention lead to good outcomes – just doesn’t ring true to them.

Wow, it’s bad enough that people blame free markets for a government-caused financial crisis, but Ms. Emba (and perhaps others) think that we’ve tried capitalist “solutions” after the crisis.

What planet is she on? Can she identify one thing that Obama has done that would count as a free-market response to the financial crisis? The fake stimulusObamacare? Dodd-Frank?

By the way, she points out that young people presumably have no idea what socialism actually entails. They just want traditional welfare-state redistributionism.

…for many millennials, “socialism” is simply shorthand for “vaguely Scandinavian in the best way” – free health care, free education and subsidized child care, a state that supports its citizens rather than leaving them at the mercy of impersonal corporations bent on profit. …the socialism that most millennials want is simply a return to a more muscular form of traditional liberalism, one that would have felt right at home in the administration of FDR.

Given that President Roosevelt was either malicious or ignorant, and given that his policies lengthened and deepened the Great Depression, I’m not exactly encouraged that millennials merely want traditional liberal (as opposed to classical liberal) policies.

Though it’s worth noting (in a very depressing sense) that a lot of young people are embracing more totalitarian versions of socialism. Here are some brief excerpts from a longer article in Vox.

Jacobin has in the past five years become the leading intellectual voice of the American left, the most vibrant and relevant socialist publication in a very long time. …That’s an opportunity that Jacobin is seizing to great effect, even if Sanders isn’t far enough left for their taste. The Sanders campaign “could begin to legitimate the word ‘socialist,’ and spark a conversation around it, even if Sanders’s welfare-state socialism doesn’t go far enough,” Sunkara wrote earlier this year. …Jacobin…now boasts a print circulation of about 20,000 and has gained about 400 more subscribers a week since Bernie started his ascent in November. …even if Bernie fades, there’s still a constituency for socialist ideas — a fact that could turn out to be much more important than the Sanders campaign itself.

And they really, really mean socialism. With all its warts.

“It is unapologetic about its interests in political economy and Marxism…,” Brooklyn College professor Corey Robin, a longtime leftist writer who signed on early and is now a contributing editor at Jacobin, says. …any Jacobin editor would be the first to tell you, Sanders is a normal labor liberal, or at most a social democrat. He doesn’t go far enough. …What we really need, Sunkara insists, is democratic worker control of the means of production. …A number of Jacobin’s contributors are members of the International Socialist Organization (ISO), the largest Trotskyist group in North America. …Sunkara’s allegiances…lie with Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). …Frase recalls working with the Freedom Road Socialist Organization, a post-Maoist group, while in high school.

I’m not sure to be more amazed that some people really believe this evil nonsense or more worried that Jacobin may actually represent the future of the left in America.

Time for some good news.

My Cato colleague Emily Ekins writes that young people are not hopeless idiots, at least not all of them. Though she phrases her argument in a much nicer fashion in a column she wrote for the Washington Post.

She starts with grim polling data.

A national Reason-Rupe survey found that 53 percent of Americans under 30 have a favorable view of socialism compared with less than a third of those over 30. Moreover, Gallup has found that an astounding 69 percent of millennials say they’d be willing to vote for a “socialist” candidate for president — among their parents’ generation, only a third would do so.

But she notes that for the most part they don’t actually believe in real socialism.

…millennials tend to reject the actual definition of socialism — government ownership of the means of production, or government running businesses. Only 32 percent of millennials favor “an economy managed by the government,” while, similar to older generations, 64 percent prefer a free-market economy. …what does socialism actually mean to millennials? Scandinavia. …In contrast with the 1960s and ’70s, college students today are not debating whether we should adopt the Soviet or Maoist command-and-control regimes that devastated economies and killed millions.

In other words, the nutjobs at Jacobin are still a minority on the left.

Best of all, young people are capable of learning lessons from the real world.

…as millennials age and begin to earn more, their socialistic ideals seem to slip away. …millennials become averse to social welfare spending if they foot the bill. As they reach the threshold of earning $40,000 to $60,000 a year, the majority of millennials come to oppose income redistribution, including raising taxes to increase financial assistance to the poor. …When tax rates are not explicit, millennials say they’d prefer larger government offering more services (54 percent) to smaller government offering fewer services (43 percent). However when larger government offering more services is described as requiring high taxes, support flips and 57 percent of millennials opt for smaller government with fewer services and low taxes, while 41 percent prefer large government.

And she explains that previous generations also have shifted away from big government.

In the 1980s, the same share (52 percent) of baby boomers also supported bigger government, and so did Generation Xers (53 percent) in the 1990s. Yet, both baby boomers and Gen Xers grew more skeptical of government over time and by about the same magnitude. Today, only 25 percent of boomers and 37 percent of Gen Xers continue to favor larger government.

My two cents, for what it’s worth, is that the infatuation with socialism (however defined) among the young underscores why it is so important to “win the narrative” about the causes of the financial crisis and the resulting weak economy.

To the extent that voters actually think capitalism caused the mess in 2008, they will be susceptible to statist ideologies.

In some sense, this is history repeating itself. The Great Depression largely was caused by misguided policies from Hoover and Roosevelt. Yet the left very cleverly peddled the story that capitalism had failed. As a result, generations of voters were more sympathetic to big government.

Thank goodness there are places such as the Cato Institute that are working to correct the narrative, not only about the Great Depression, but also with regards to the financial crisis.

Let’s close with a clever description of the difference between various strains of statism.

I put forth a similar analysis back in 2014, but I confess it wasn’t as clever as the above image. Or as clever as the sign I recently shared.

And let’s not forget the famous two-cow explanation of various ideologies.

This is a guest post by Dan Mitchell “a high priest of light tax small state libertarianism”
  • Robert

    This article is again trying to convince you that Socialism is Communism, and again that is so misleading.
    Socialism has worked in Europe for at a least 150 years and industry thrives, but the workers are taken care of and do not have to struggle to get medicine or food.
    If there is an erosion in output how come all those large companies in Europe have Survived on their own with out Government hand outs like we have here, BMW, Mercedes, Jaguar, Volkswagen, nearly ever transmission in so called American cars are made in Germany.
    American cars, the only car made in America is the Toyota Camry, I do not see them struggling to exist in a Socialist Country, How about Canada, I am sure that the Capitalist USA is about to take over Canada because they can not make it as a Socialist country.
    he reason that the younger generation is in favor of Socialism, not Communism is because they are educated and can understand the difference, the older generation still associates Socialism with Russia, which was never Socialistic. Yes they called the USSR united Soviet Socialistic Republic, they were never a Republic either, if you think this is not true then for sure ou think North Korea is a Democracy, because they call their country the DPR, P Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea..
    You could not even start to believe what the USA has done to bring down the Cuban and Venezuela government included armed invasion and supporting the opposition with aid and arms. But both have stood the test and now that we can not install the people we want in power there we will negotiate with them. The US feels like it has a right to control everything in the world, just like the MOB of old control it or get rid of it, if it is to big to get rid of or control then we will negotiate with it.
    The UN is a good example, 189 nations vote for something that is against what the US wants and they will Veto it, no matter how right it is.
    Socialism is the only thing that treats the people as persons and protects the earth the way it should be.
    HAVE A NICE DAY

    • Why would any one take away from you and give to another, how do you see that it works ??? I guess you would like for me to give you half of what l worked hard to get ??? are you crazy ???

      • Robert

        DustyFae
        I do feel for the uneducated that believe the BS without checking it out.
        The Federal and State Government does it to us all the time with our taxes, State and Federal Income Tax, Sales Tax, House Transfer Tax, Automobile Registration Tax, and I could go on.
        If you were referring to Socialism, European Socialism is no different from here except you get more for your taxes in Europe than you do here. There are Capitalist the world over, it is just in a Socialized Society the Government takes care of the working class people, and in Capitalist America you are to fend for your self.
        HAVE A NICE DAY

        • Susan P

          You also pay a great deal more of your hard earned money in as taxes in Europe. If socialism is so successful why are countries in Europe facing economic collapse and bankruptcy? Or don’t you pay attention to the news?

          • Robert

            Susan P
            The countries in Europe are in much better financial shape than the USA. Greece is the only country that has major financial problems, and they took Socialism to a new level never before heard of, letting people retire at 50 years old.
            Germany is struggling with Social Services because of the influx of Muslims but is doing fine other wise, Norway, Sweden,Denmark, Italy and England are in wonderful financial shape compared to the times in the economy that the Housing Bubble burst brought on by this country. I am heavily invested in Europe and China so I do watch the news not the BS that the commentators put out to convince you that you are living in the best country in the World. My daughters in England and Germany and my son in Denmark make more than they could here and the have more left over than they would here, You are right you pay more taxes but you get a lot more for your taxes than here. The people in those countries are treated like people not like a commodity like here in the USA.
            In Germany you can go to college free and in England even the poorest can afford college.
            If as you say Socialist countries are so bad then why are so many American college students flocking there for employment and low cost education.
            HAVE A NICE DAY

          • Susan P

            You do realize, don’t you, that the housing bubble burst was not caused by capitalism, but by the socialist federal policies forced on banks that denied banks the right to even ask a person if they had a job before handing them hundreds of thousands of dollars for a mortgage on a house they could not afford? The the same socialists in our government authorized the bundling and selling of those worthless mortgages to investors.

            If the socialist had stayed out of the housing market there would never have been a “housing bubble” to burst.

          • Robert

            Susan P
            You have a lot to learn about the Financial market, me like so many others saw it coming and bailed out, it had nothing to so with the Socialists in the Government remember the Conservatives were running the Government and did not want any rules that stopped them from making money. The Democrats are the ones accused of being Socialists and they were not in power.
            The Mortgage companies got permission from the Conservative Government to bundle and sell the mortgages knowing that the mortgages were toxic so we need to get rid of them. When it all went down I do not remember any Socialists being charged with any thing it was the free wheeling Conservative that want no rules to confine them.
            It was the Capitalistic Wall Street nothing to do with Socialism, they wanted the rules governing their control taken off and the Conservative Government in place agreed that they should not be restricted from working how they wanted to.
            After the Great Depression caused by the same thing that caused the Housing Bubble to burst, then President Franklin Roosevelt, who was accused of being a Socialist, put laws into place so that it could not happen again, successive Conservative Governments since have removed all the restrictions, allowing for the collapse, simply put greed for more wealth.
            I watch my money very close and i also watch the handlers of my money so I do know what is going on in the politically charged financial world.
            HAVE A NICE DAY

          • Susan P

            No, Robert. The socialists in the government wanted everyone to be able to purchase a house whether they could actually afford the mortgage payments or not. The banking rules were changed to increase the percentage of owner occupancy; in the name of “fairness”. There would not have been a “need” for those bundles of toxic mortgages if the banks had not had their hands tied by new laws that forbid them from even asking about the financial stability of the person seeking a mortgage. Capitalist bankers never asked to make those risky loans.
            Capitalists can make money on rent. They didn’t need to boost home ownership. The bundling of the toxic mortgages was a way out of the socialist’s “everyone should be a homeowner” frenzy for the banks.

          • Robert

            Susan P
            What law are you referring to that tied the Banks hands and made them give toxic loans. I do know a good amount about Banking as well as investments I make myself know because that is where I have over $80 Million dollars invested. The Banks themselves as well as Wall Street wanted the rules removed so that they could trade as they please with no safeguards in place. Even after the 2008 Housing Bubble Burst the derivative market was severely curtailed, then in 2015 all those curtails were removed so that Banks could again play with my money, they have nothing to loose the bank accounts are insured by your tax dollars.
            I think someone has severely given you some wrong information about the laws that govern Wall Street and the Banking industry.
            There are public webb sites you can go to for research.
            To believe a lie is as bad as telling a lie if you act on it to other people.
            HAVE A NICE DAY

          • Susan P

            I didn’t say it was a law. It was policy pushed down from the federal level. My information came from an extended (30 – 45 minute) program on NPR radio a few years ago. We all know NPR is as liberal as it gets so they weren’t capitalists telling tall tales. The whole problem started with the idea that “everyone should be able to BUY a home” regardless of income. Many banks were told they could NOT ask for proof of income to the point of not being able to ask if the person seeking a mortgage even had a job. Those mortgage loans are the ones that got bundled and sold to keep the banks out of default; until they didn’t.

          • Robert

            Susan P
            why do we not put the blame where it belongs and quit with the Liberal BS, I am an independent, I do not let either party think for me as you apparently do. here is a short list of when the deregulation’s took place.
            http://cepr.net/documents/publications/dereg-timeline-2009-07.pdf

            Derivatives as Financial Mischief

            After Gramm-Leach-Bliley, the most common claim made in support of blaming deregulation is that both Congress and regulators ignored various warnings about the risks of derivatives, particularly credit default swaps, and chose not to impose needed regulation. In 2003, Warren Buffett called derivatives “weapons of mass financial destruction,” and warned that the concentration of derivatives risk in a few dealers posed “serious systemic problems.” Buffett was not alone in calling for increased derivatives regulation.
            If the largest investors in the financial market says it was deregulation of the Derivatives then who can argue with someone who has a bigger vested interest in the financial market than anyone else in this country.
            No one forced banks to give bad loans they just knew they would not be held accountable for them, because they were packaged and sold, and the bank got their money, which in most cases are the Conservatives you are supporting.
            The so called Conservatives are the ones who want you to spend your money so that have it, if smaller government was to become a fact, who do you think all that extra tax money would end up with. Yes you have the correct answer, THE CONSERVATIVES, who by nature are the ones who want you to believe that the so called Liberals are wasting all your money, if there was no Social Services again where would that money go to the so called Conservatives. WHY IS THE RICHEST IN THIS COUNTRY DO NOT THINK THAT THE TAXES ARE TO HIGH. and also think deregulation is the reason for the Housing Bubble Bust.
            HAVE A GOOD DAY

          • Susan P

            I, too, do not allow either party to “think” for me. I found the problem with the mortgages. The Clinton administration repealed the Glass-Steagall Banking Act of 1933 in 1999 and that lead directly to the mortgage meltdown in 2008!
            So, what I said previously about forcing some banks to hand out mortgages to people who did not have to prove they even had a steady income is TRUE.

          • Robert

            Susan P
            You are so one sided about an issue you never seem to check the facts, you just assume. Here are some Information you seemed to have overlooked.

            Legislative history[edit]

            The banking industry had been seeking the repeal of the 1933 Glass–Steagall Act since the 1980s, if not earlier.[5][6] In 1987 the Congressional Research Service prepared a report that explored the cases for and against preserving the Glass–Steagall act.[7]

            Sen. Phil Gramm (R, Texas), Rep. Jim Leach (R, Iowa), and Rep. Thomas J. Bliley, Jr. (R, Virginia), the co-sponsors of the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act.

            Respective versions of the Financial Services Act were introduced in the U.S. Senate by Phil Gramm (Republican of Texas) and in the U.S. House of Representatives by Jim Leach (R-Iowa). The third lawmaker associated with the bill was Rep. Thomas J. Bliley, Jr. (R-Virginia), Chairman of the House Commerce Committee from 1995 to 2001.

            During debate in the House of Representatives, Rep. John Dingell (Democrat of Michigan) argued that the bill would result in banks becoming “too big to fail.” Dingell further argued that this would necessarily result in a bailout by the Federal Government.

            now as you see the Re[publicans are the ones that wrote the repeal, under the prodding of Citicorp, which later turned into CitiGroup. With the Republican nearly unanimously voting in favor along with a large number of Democrats, the President had no alternative but to sign the bill to avoid a long term fight and a winning vote over a veto.
            You seem to always blame the Presidents, both Present and past, the President has no power, Congress is the power that make the laws and pass them.
            I do not hear you blaming The Bush’s for the BS they got us into and are still into
            Their lies about the reason to go into Iraq, just so Cheney’s group could get the oil rights which backfired in their faces. There was Cheney saying the Iraqi’s will welcome us with open arms, for getting rid of Hussein, we got rid of Hussein and put the real crooks in charge and everyone knew from the start in the intelligence community that the only reason there was calm in the country is because Hussein kept those trying to overthrow his Government under control.
            That is the problem with a lot of people they only want to push the BS when the story goes much deeper.

            HAVE A GOOD DAY

    • Robert

      And you sir are a delusional fool.

      • Robert

        Robert
        I may be a delusional fool but I have lived in Socialistic countries in Europe and my three daughters and son are there now 2 Daughter in England, one daughter in Germany and my son in Norway. If you have never lived in a Socialistic country how can you know so much about it.
        There is no opportunity left in the USA unless you are a crook or the well connected. The people who went to college with my daughters are not doing near as well as they are in money. The people who went to school with my son in upstate NEW York, most have not even found a job in their field of study and one has joined my son in Norway and now has a job in his field making more than he expected to make here.
        I did nothing to help any of my children except put them through college, they all worked for their passage and monies to get to their respective countries which already had jobs lined up before the moved permanently. They pay a flat fee for health insurance and they pay nothing else unless it is cosmetic in nature, no prescription costs. housing is affordable for even the lowest income worker, Unemployment seems high, but you have to consider you stay on the unemployment list until you are reemployed, in the USA you are removed from the unemployment list as soon as your benefits run out, so it seems like unemployment is much lower here than in Europe when in fact it is much higher,, according to the Pew report on October 2015.
        HAVE A NICE DAY

    • I-RIGHT-I

      That’s some good stuff right there! I haven’t heard that lame Amerinazicolonialimperalist BS in years.
      Mush for brains like you is why Donald Trump is right about taking our pay on the battlefield. So, which one of the many butts we’ve kicked over the decades belongs to you and yours? lol

      • Robert

        I-RIGHT-1
        Donald Trump is doing so good because the majority of Americans are fed up with what we have.
        The very Rich and the unemployed, because your Capitalist friend wanted to move to cheap labor to line their pockets with more that they do not need. I suppose you could say I was on the battlefield being I am retired Military.
        If you do not know about a thing then you should do some research to find out about it before you comment.
        HAVE A NICE DAY

    • marcus johannes

      The ultimate goal of Socialism is Communism – Vladimir Lenin

      • Robert

        marcus johannes
        Vladimir Lenin is long dead, and basically Communism is also. A mixture of Capitalism and Socialism is moving very quickly in China and has been in Russia for some time. Each country wants it citizens to believe that theirs is the best system going, The leaders of the country do not want you to even think there is something better because if you did that would take money out of their pockets. According to all I have read about Lenin which was not his real name, he did not even want Communism he just led people to think this because in the peoples eyes at the time Communism was a good thing where everyone worked and everyone shared equally and everyone had the same things in life. What Lenin really wanted total control of the country and people to make himself a King and everyone else a peasant and he nearly succeeded, because the people believed him and had no way to check any thing out like we do today.
        HAVE A NICE DAY

        • marcus johannes

          There is a little bit of truth in what You commented on , But I ask why is Communist Party membership as high as it ever has been ?? Documentary Film , Agenda , Grinding America Down ,By Curtis Bowers , It will enlighten You and open your eyes

          • Robert

            marcus johannes
            If everything someone wrote in a book was true, do you not think this world would be different. The most read book in History says that this Earth and the Heavens was made in 6 days 10,000 years ago, and even though Science in every way has proven this to be so far out of the facts that the earth is billions of years old, people still believe it.
            I have a neighbor that tells me every day that Scientists do not know anything that they make up all this BS, that GOD wrote the Bible and his word is truth, when the facts not in dispute is that the Jews at the time wrote every book in the Bible and some that were left out of the bible because they are contradictory to what the message was supposed to put across. Israel is supposed to protect at any cost, if I wrote the Bible then what ever area I came from or chose would have to be protected at any cost
            Communism is not growing, the population of Communist controlled countries is growing making it seem like communism is growing when in fact even China has a mixture of Capitalism and Socialism in the country even though it is controlled by a Communist Government.
            Religion in the world is decreasing, less than 24% of the industrialized worlds population believe in religion as their Religious book tells it. I have read Mr Bower,s some time ago, Mr Bower’s is a great spin doctor, like our Politicians, filled with half truths and ineundos,
            Here is a review of the book: http://www.garynorth.com/public/10256.cfm
            Capitalism wants you to believe that it is the greatest type of Government in the world because you are the one making the want it all, rich, richer and why would they want you to think that system that takes care of the working class be better than the one that takes from you and gives back nothing.
            HAVE A NICE DAY

          • marcus johannes

            @Robert , I did read the review of Agenda , I found it biased and the writer did seem to have a personnel ax to grind , I may not consider myself a Christian ,But I do understand why the Political and Institutional Left attacks and demonizes Christianity , After reading this review at least to me it seems as though this writer is very much a part of this Agenda of ridiculing and attacking Christians and Christianity , I found Agenda to be very informative and interesting not because it has anything to do with any one ideology , Even though it was written and filmed from the perspective of Christians and their world view , I consider this film a very small part of the mosaic and or puzzle , I try my best to see the big picture , That is why I am in contact with like minded individuals all over this planet ,They also see what I see , The Left is alive and well in many parts of the world

          • mobilemann

            YOU, TELLING ANYONE to open their eyes? you who get’s 100% of their news from rupert murdoc and co? You are the most un educated, un knowledgable person out there to be telling people this stuff. What an idiot

          • marcus johannes

            Who is Rupert Murdoc ? Ridicule is Man`s most potent weapon -Saul Alinsky , You have learned well ,Someday You too may be a Jedi Mobilemann

          • mobilemann

            continuing with your trope; he’s your emperor.

      • mobilemann

        it probably was in his case. That doesn’t mean anything for bernie, who specifically wants political democracy and democratic control of a socialist economic system. Why would you just spread lies? Are you uneducated or just a liar?

    • jeanette

      socialism does Not work,

      • Robert

        jenette
        First do you even know what Socialism is.
        If Socialism does not work then how come all those countries in Europe have been Socialist Countries as well as Canada all this time, at minimum over 150 years, and the people in those countries prosper as well if not better than we do. Those countries have the best medical for their people in the world. The happiest people in the world live there, they are among the best educated in the world. Industry flourishes, IBM, Mercedes, Volkswagen, Jaguar, the best cars in the world are made in Europe. Nearly every transmission for the cars we drive with American names on them are made in Germany, College is free in Germany and affordable in the other countries so that even the poorest can go to college. American college graduates are flocking to Europe because they can get low cost education that is as good if not better than over here and jobs for college graduates are available there more so than here.
        DO NOT LISTEN TO THE CAPITALIST PROPAGANDA, YOU HAVE A COMPUTER DO YOUR HOMEWORK RESEARCH.
        HAVE A NICE DAY

  • RLTMLT

    What has led to the reemergence of Socialism ? How about a collapsing infrastructure, the export of whole industries and their living wage jobs to low wage foreign sweatshops, and the enormous amount of taxpayer’s Dollars spent on waging endless foreign wars ! A repeat of it’s former popularity when the Capitalist inspired 1930s Great Depression obliterated the standard of living for average working Americans in this country ! As the renown economist Richard Wolff has said many times, over the past eighty years Capitalism has failed to work for average citizens who have been forced to repeatedly endure the pain of eleven past recessions, a Great Depression, and now a prolonged economic slow down that shows eminent signs of becoming yet another Great Depression ! It remains an increasingly highly unstable system as even minimal government regulation and oversight are eliminated !

  • rwhawk

    Socialism is State tyranny

    • Robert

      rwhalk
      I do not think you have the inkling of what Socialism is, it is not what the Capitalist Corporate America says it is. You have computer just go looking for where the happiest people in the world live and you will find it is in Socialist Countries, Mainly Scandinavian,, where industry flourishes and the people have a say in their Government, that is why Americans are getting educated in college and finding out there is no Capitalism in America, just Corporate Capitalism. American college kids are flocking to Europe because there is no opportunity here unless you are well connected.
      DO some research and you will see that I am not spreading BS just the true Facts.
      HAVE A NICE DAY

      • rwhawk

        I agree America no longer is capitalist. It has been crony fascism for decades. What government indoctrination K-12 centers and Marxist colleges have done is dumb down the past couple generations to the point of not knowing what tyranny is. I’d say do some research yourself but this past generations haven’t a clue about critical thinking and truth.

        • Richard Taylor

          Which of your freedoms have been infringed by the facists?

          • rwhawk

            The correct question to be answered first is “what is tyranny?” That word can be interchanged with totalitarianism. What is your answer to this question?

          • Richard Taylor

            Sorry. Can’t answer a question with a question. This is usually saved for the times when one does not have an answer.

          • rwhawk

            Since the topic I posed is based on tyranny and the post you responded to addressed tyranny it becomes essential that we both know what it is. I never attempted to answer your red herring question and truly misses the point. You appear to lack understanding.

          • Richard Taylor

            You began by speaking of Facism and now you want to talk about tyranny. That I understand. I repeat. Which of your freedoms have been infringe upon by facists?

          • rwhawk

            Go to where I started: Socialism is State tyranny
            What is tyranny? It appears you lack understanding.

          • rwhawk

            Your question is short sighted as I believe you lack understanding of tyranny as a product of totalitarianism. The meaning of words between two party’s with vastly differing worldviews is essential for any meaningful discussion. The root of our discussion hinges on tyranny which will then lead to your question dealing with fascism and freedom. I say shortsighted because freedom is only one aspect of the losses.

  • Richard Taylor

    Thanks for the thoughtful responses. I notice that those who disagree with Robert respond with retorts and do not respond with counter arguments. In this country, we have public schools, public parks, public supported law enforcement and we expect the Government to maintain our infrastructure … not socialist? Get over yourself.

    • Robert

      Richard Taylor
      I see you are a die hard Capitalist that either does not know anything about Socialism or chooses not to want to know anything.
      In the Socialist Countries they have everything you mentioned and much much more, at least in the Socialist Countries the infrastructure is maintained, you can not say the same for here, as over 65% of our bridges are unsafe and the roads are horrible. The US Government run by the rich could care less about the lower end of the spectrum of people than they do about the top 1% who funds their campaigns and dictates to them what to do so the top 1% can make more money. it is all about the money in this country and you never see the top 1% or any of their family in a war zone that is making them richer.
      In Europe no one is exempt and most of the Royal families take great pride that their offspring is at the wars for their people. In this country it would be unheard of for the rich to go to war that is for the scum of the nation to do, it started back in the founding of this country when you could pay someone to take your place on the battlefield.
      HAVE A NICE DAY

      • Richard Taylor

        Hi Robert:
        I don’t believe you see the point in my response. I do not disagree with you. My point was that those who disagreed with you did not have a point, they just spout vitriol.

        I am a Capitalist … and yes, in some respects a Socialist (i.e., infrastructure, education, etc.) … who understands that taxes are necessary and social programs are positive. My comment was meant to point out that we are already a Socialist society and to deny it only indicates ignorance and misunderstanding of our society and our government.

        Try not to condemn those you believe have different opinions as it then becomes more difficult to influence those who might otherwise be influenced.

        • Robert

          Richard Taylor
          I strongly disagree with you about the US having a Socialist Government, a Socialist Government, keeps local taxes in the area they are paid so that the people benefit from the taxes paid. In a Socialist Government the head of the country makes sure that the local government uses the money the way it is supposed to be used TO BENEFIT THE PEOPLE
          In the USA, State Government all the taxes go to the Capital so that the corrupt politicians can give it to their friends in the way of over priced contracts, and the Federal taxes work the same way.
          I worked for General Dynamics as an advisory position and I see how they manipulate the prices to seem like they are paying more for the item to build the submarine than the really are. If it were to be seriously investigated by someone in the know you would find out the Submarines cast about one third less at minimum than they tell the Government the materials cost. There is no way they could ever convince me a Modern Submarine cost $7 Billion to build and that is plus the add on that come later after the sea trials.
          HAVE A GOOD DAY

          • Richard Taylor

            OK. Well you seem very angry. Why weren’t you a whistle blower when you were at General Dymanics? I am not quite as cynical as you when it comes to local government and how they spend the State & Local taxes. I have had jobs in State Government and Local Government as well, so what I saw was mostly hard working and well meaning people. You are correct that we need to government at all levels to work for the people’s benefit. We should be fighting for campaign finance reform if we are ever gonna get there. Have you read Jane Mayer’s book, Dark Money? That will really make you angry.

          • Robert

            Richard Taylor
            I worked in the intelligence community for years, I know what goes on in the Connected world. I also know what happens to high level whistle blowers, there are those fatal car accidents and suicides before they can testify. Look at what is going on with WIKI leaks, ans also look what happened with Snowden, They told the world what the US Government was doing ILLEGALLY against its own citizens and now they will eventually go to jail or worse yet have a fatal accident. When you work in the intelligence community you know nothing, are not allowed to talk about anything, and are subject to charges.
            When I worked for GD I was not in the Intelligence Community at that time, I am a Crypto Specialist, that was my advising role to GD at the time, but when I saw what they were telling the Government they were paying for some of the equipment and Knowing it as right off the shelf which anyone could buy at less than half the price they were telling the Government they were paying for it, and to everyone around it was a laugh because we make extremely good money, why kick a gift horse in the mouth.
            I totally agree with you about Campaign Finance, Give everyone the same amount of money and do not let them use any more than that, and no outside help either other than foot soldiers. I think the world knows when someone donates large sums of money to a candidate they are wanting something for their money like most of us, we do not go to WalMart and give theme like them, we want something for our money.
            HAVE A GOOD DAY

          • Richard Taylor

            Robert. Now I see why you are angry. I am angry too. Sorry to sound like a bumper sticker, but I guess if you are not angry, it is because you are not paying attention. Good luck and good day sir.

  • marcus johannes

    The ultimate goal of Socialism is Communism – Vladimir Lenin ,Founder of the Soviet Union

    • mobilemann

      again, it probably was in his case. That doesn’t mean anything for bernie, who specifically wants political democracy and democratic control of a socialist economic system. Why would you just spread lies? Are you uneducated or just a liar?

  • jeanette

    i was born in a socialist country for 16 years, then thank God i got the chance to come to America, Legally, socialism does not work, also i know people who live in these countries and they are not the happiest on the planet

  • Holy Joe

    Socialism/Communism is great until they run out of everyone else’s money. Remember the
    British had six years of it after WW-2 – the times were difficult enough as the War had left them flat broke and owing everyone else all over the world. Well Socialism put the finishing touches to them, and now they are so far gone down the moral drains, they are permitting Sharia in their own former country, but America is closing in fast on chaos, as they have permitted the same mass influx of persons with no understanding of Western Economics and Ethics. The Untermensch are taking over America as surely as they have taken over Europe and the U.K. Long past waking up time America.

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