Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Again with the Socialism

Speaking of Socialism, Sultan hit another ball out of the park with this one:

And that safety net remains the most compelling thing socialism has to offer. But what the safety net really means is the abrogation of responsibility, the promise that entire populations need never grow up, need never function as adults because they live and die secure in the cradle of the nanny state.

As always, Sultan loves to paint with a broad brush. We get into the issue of drawing lines and assigning blame. I'm unconvinced that every government service or safety net should be considered "socialism"-- or at least, as being the significant tipping point that turns us into the USSR. Social Security, for instance, was created as a reaction to the elderly having zero recourse during the Depression and being turned out on the street. I fail to see how giving them assistance makes us all slaves to evil government overlords.

Ditto for this crap:

Little wonder then that where socialism creeps birth rates drop, marriages are delayed, divorces are frequent, leadership is lacking, culture becomes vulgar, obscenity becomes art and all the other symptoms of an infantile generation take hold. After all once you've chosen to give up your responsibility to the government, you choose to remain stuck somewhere between childhood and adulthood.

Let's think about this. What evidence is there to claim that socialism alone determines that people will get married later, have more divorces, have "obscene art" and "vulgar culture," and so on? What does socialism have to do with creating vulgar culture? Is he seriously claiming there are no vulgar cultures in capitalism societies?

You might as well blame increasing divorce rates and decreasing birth rates on having electricity. After all, the Afghan countryside and the Amish farms are both teeming with children and divorces are low. Centuries ago, before the advent of the evil bulb, we got married early. And don't forget, our artists were pure and our culture untainted back in the Renaissance- no electricity there.

Wait a minute, I've got it! Electricity is itself socialism! Instead of putting the hard work into getting light, you just flick a switch and get it all handed to you. Where's the incentive to light your own fire? To dig your own coal mine? Curse you, Edison! You destroyed the entire peat industry overnight (which, of course, led to us needing to issue a multi-million dollar peat bailout).

I guess I owe you an apology, Sultan. It seems you were right after all. Socialist electricity is responsible for all our woes.

(Of course, what can you expect from me? I'm a Communist.)

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