Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Thursday, September 22, 2016

Why is socialism still so popular? A superb conference at Cato recently addressed the issue with new insights and reasoning. Socialism should be discredited in this age of incredible abundance and progress: hunger has declined from 30 percent of the world's population to some 10 percent, yet with billions more mouths to feed. Socialism's continuing appeal is so irrational that there must be some innate support for it in the needs of the human psyche. The subject was explored by several evolutionary psychologists at Cato's event, which was moderated by Marian L. Tupy, editor of HumanProgress.org and a senior policy analyst at Cato's Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity.

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Medicaid, Social Security, Public Education etc. are actually pretty necessary.

If socialism is so irrational, why isn't Cato calling for the Department of Defense to be privatized?

#1 | Posted by Derek_Wildstar at 2016-09-22 08:33 PM | Reply

Thread might as well be called, "Why is taking care of one another still popular."

Because. Most of us care about how our fellow Americans are doing.

We don't want a nation of sick morons living and dying on the streets.

The, "I got mine", mentality of the GOP is destroying our nation.

#2 | Posted by ClownShack at 2016-09-22 08:51 PM | Reply

So, it's still a "Yes" to the question "Am I my brother's keeper?"

#3 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-22 08:53 PM | Reply

"The, "I got mine", mentality of the GOP is destroying our nation."

Really?

Then how is it we free market devotees outlived the great socialist experiment? How is it that people in the capitalist countries have always had a standard of living far in excess of even the most prosperous socialist country?

#4 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-22 08:54 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

How is it that people in the capitalist countries

No such thing as a purely capitalist country.

Socialism is incorporated in all countries.

#5 | Posted by ClownShack at 2016-09-22 09:14 PM | Reply

#4

Here's a test for you Bummer.

Does the country have a government? If the answer is yes. Then the country, to some degree, is socialist.

Even here. In the most capitalistic country in the world. We have socialism incorporated into our society. Our laws. Our finances. Our everyday lives.

#6 | Posted by ClownShack at 2016-09-22 09:23 PM | Reply

Thread might as well be called, "Why is taking care of one another still popular."
Because. Most of us care about how our fellow Americans are doing.
We don't want a nation of sick morons living and dying on the streets.
The, "I got mine", mentality of the GOP is destroying our nation.
#2 | POSTED BY CLOWNSHACK

One can't help but to help others when helping themself.

#7 | Posted by TXLIBERTARIAN at 2016-09-22 09:40 PM | Reply

What a headline.

I'd like to think libertarians aren't actually this clueless about human nature..
But seeing as their heroine is a crazy old cat lady who never had kids, nor could even come up with a character that had a desire for kids, and wrote pulp fiction in which rape is how the natural resource that is a woman is converted to wealth in the capitalist bedroom, I have my doubts.

"Socialism's continuing appeal is so irrational that there must be some innate support for it in the needs of the human psyche."

Um, no.
Humans are just one of many social animals that by their nature form societies.
The appeal is no more irrational than the appeal of being attracted to whatever sex it is that attracts you.
It's instinct.
It's what we do.

Well, some of us.
There's always a few Ted Kacynzski types.
But at least he had the decency to shun society and go live in a six by eight shack in the woods.
Unlike the libertarians, who can't quite figure out why everyone else acts so weird. It's because normal people have access to an emotional construct called empathy. It's like trying to describe colors to a blind man.

The strategy of forming societies is product of rational thought, in fact it's not even a strategy at all. It's something much better. It's the biologically driven outcome of countless years of evolutionary success.

Population groups exited long before human societies existed.

#8 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-22 09:41 PM | Reply

strategy of forming societies is ... not the ... product of rational thought, ...

#9 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-22 09:42 PM | Reply

If we didn't house and feed people then these same people who complain about social programs would be complaining about having to see all these starving people in the streets offending their eyes.

The problem is capitalism only works for some.

It's not the great system that meets everyone's needs.

Never has been...never will be.

Capitalism has to feed off of some people for the benefit of other people.

#10 | Posted by BillJohnson at 2016-09-22 10:02 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

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"Wherever capitalism appears, in pursuit of its mission of exploitation, there will Socialism, fertilized by misery, watered by tears, and vitalized by agitation be also found, unfurling its class-struggle banner & proclaiming its mission of emancipation"

- Eugene V. Debs

#11 | Posted by HeliumRat at 2016-09-22 10:49 PM | Reply

One can't help but to help others when helping themself.

#7 | POSTED BY TXLIBERTARIAN

It worked so well in the Guilded Age.

#12 | Posted by TFDNihilist at 2016-09-23 12:01 AM | Reply

This tread is a good place to ask this question:
There are many successful Socialist countries on this planet. Why has there never been a Libertarian or Capitalist country?
All the ones that had serious pure Capitalist eras all got watered down if not completely taken over by Socialism.
Where is and has there ever been a Libertarian country?

#13 | Posted by TFDNihilist at 2016-09-23 12:05 AM | Reply

Why has there never been a ... Capitalist country?

Capitalism can't survive without socialism.

It feeds on socialism.

It exploits socialism.

#14 | Posted by ClownShack at 2016-09-23 01:55 AM | Reply

Exploitation of natural resources is the cornerstone of capitalism.
People are a natural resource too.

#15 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 01:59 AM | Reply

Then how is it we free market devotees outlived the great socialist experiment?

You didn't. Free market capitalism died before socialism, killed by its own excesses.

What free market do you live in? The one where the government won't let you pollute or your neighbor operate a slaughterhouse in his garage? The one where it makes other people pay for the roads you drive on? The one where it makes other people pay for your police and military protection?

Social security? Medicaid? Welfare? Heard of any of those thingies?

Maybe instead of reading what Cato spouts, taking Econ 101 and reading Upton Sinclair would do you good.

#16 | Posted by northguy3 at 2016-09-23 09:44 AM | Reply

their heroine is a crazy old cat lady who

Was an illegal immigrant who used welfare when she couldn't make it as an author

#17 | Posted by northguy3 at 2016-09-23 09:48 AM | Reply

You guys are sick. Even in socialism, someone has to work.

In order for capitalism to work, everyone has to take care of themselves.

#18 | Posted by boaz at 2016-09-23 10:56 AM | Reply

Boaz,

'In order for capitalism to work, everyone has to take care of themselves."

So there you have it.

The reason capitalism isn't the perfect system.

Not everyone can always take care of themselves.

Some people might need assistance for a short while and others may need it all their life.

The key is to single out people who can support themselves but are just lazy and would prefer to sit in their apartment and play on the Internet.

I'm willing to bet there is a few of those reading these words. I bet they're voting for Hillary.

#19 | Posted by BillJohnson at 2016-09-23 03:02 PM | Reply

Capitalism would be dead without socialism.

Or did you forget how taxpayer money was used to bail out the banks and Wall Street?

#20 | Posted by ClownShack at 2016-09-23 04:03 PM | Reply

"Does the country have a government? If the answer is yes. Then the country, to some degree, is socialist."

Socialism doesn't require government. The economic dynamic within my family is almost purely socialist. Communist even. I earn about 90% of the total revenues, which are then allocated more or less equally between myself, my wife, and my two children.

It works because my empathy for them and my desire to see them happy is greater than what I would buy with the money that would otherwise remain mine to spend. I care about their well-being more than my own. The less I care about someone, the less willing I would be use my money to support their well-being. And I would rather take my hard-earned money and burn it rather than give it to someone like you.

You don't need government for socialism to succeed. You need government so you can force socialism on people who want nothing to do with.

#21 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-23 04:23 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"Why has there never been a Libertarian or Capitalist country?"

Because once a segment of society becomes successful and begins to accumulate wealth, the other members vote their way into the wealth creator's pockets. Although I guess you could make the claim that ancient societies, those that pre-dated government were Libertarian. But here's the thing, even in a society with very strictly limited government, a group of socialists could band up and live communally, sharing all their wealth and resources. No one would stop them. On the other hand, someone preferring a limited government would be SOL in a country governed by socialism.

Most socialists don't seem to be interested in going out and building something together. They would prefer to take that which others have already built.

"Maybe instead of reading what Cato spouts, taking Econ 101 and reading Upton Sinclair would do you good."

I'll hazard a guess I've taken twice the number of economics courses you have...if you're looking to compare academic pedigrees.

And Upton Sinclair? Really? Maybe I can follow it up with some Howard Zinn.

"Or did you forget how taxpayer money was used to bail out the banks and Wall Street?"

That effort was more aligned with socialism than the free market. All other things being equal, those banks would have failed. It is socialism, or rather it's close cousin corporatism, that kept them awash in taxpayer dollars.

#22 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-23 04:36 PM | Reply

The only Libertarian country I know of is Somalia.

#23 | Posted by HeliumRat at 2016-09-23 05:08 PM | Reply

The US was a libertarian country from 1776 - The New Deal.

#24 | Posted by JeffJ at 2016-09-23 05:32 PM | Reply

#24

Barely true at all, but somewhat true, especially in the Deep South...

Here's the real story....

Exposing the Racist History Of Libertarianism And Murray Rothbard

www.businessinsider.com

#25 | Posted by Corky at 2016-09-23 05:42 PM | Reply

Exposing the Racist History Of Libertarianism And Murray Rothbard
#25 | POSTED BY CORKY

Everyone's a racist except Hillary.

Back in May, Bernie was a racist too...but now he's her greatest ally. - www.realclearpolitics.com

#26 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2016-09-23 05:52 PM | Reply

#24 No it wasn't. The Constitution clearly allows the government to raise taxes. And we did all kinds of public works. You're just confused because we had tariffs on imports instead of an income tax.

#27 | Posted by HeliumRat at 2016-09-23 05:57 PM | Reply

Slavery is libertarian.
Thanks for that, JeffJ.

#28 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 06:10 PM | Reply

Because once a segment of society becomes successful and begins to accumulate wealth, the other members vote their way into the wealth creator's pockets.

Democracy is the enemy of capitalism. Thanks for that MadB.

#29 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 06:12 PM | Reply

Slavery was abolished when this country was Libertarian. You're welcome for that, Snoofy.

#30 | Posted by JeffJ at 2016-09-23 06:19 PM | Reply

Massive tarriffs are liberrarian too.
Thanks for that JeffJ.

#31 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 06:19 PM | Reply

So libertarianism can take or leave slavery, it's compatible with both.

Thanks for that JeffJ.

#32 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 06:20 PM | Reply

Socialism doesn't require government. The economic dynamic within my family is almost purely socialist.

No it isn't.
It's a quasi-dictatorship run by a patriarch.

#33 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 07:11 PM | Reply

As you mentioned, you wield 90% of the financial power. The others couldn't stand up to your rule even if they wanted to. They lack the economic power to compete against your monopoly.

#34 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 07:13 PM | Reply

Meanwhile, your marriage itself is a contact between you, your spouse, and the state.
A contract that relies on the backstop of government authority to remain in force.

#35 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 07:14 PM | Reply

"Democracy is the enemy of capitalism. Thanks for that MadB."

Democracy is the enemy of any sort of personal freedom. I have little doubt that the Islamic state operates under democratic principles. if 51.1% of the population vote to behead the remaining 49.9%, that's a democratic outcome.

#36 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-23 08:10 PM | Reply

"As you mentioned, you wield 90% of the financial power. The others couldn't stand up to your rule even if they wanted to. They lack the economic power to compete against your monopoly."

Financial power provides you with the opportunity for a higher standard of living, but has nothing to do with survival. And those with the power almost always get there because society gave it to them. What seems to stick in the craw of many progressives is the fact that society will deem them less valuable than they deem themselves. An unforgivable sin so far as progressives are concerned. Something that can only be fixed by forcing society to "recognize" value where value really doesn't exist. Almost like forcing society to recognize a female when the person standing in front of them has a weenis.

"A contract that relies on the backstop of government authority to remain in force."

many cultures recognize the marriage construct without ever visiting a courthouse or filing papers. As usual, you're wrong.

#37 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-23 08:15 PM | Reply

Democracy is the enemy of any sort of personal freedom.

It's only an enemy of unpopular personal freedoms. Like when gay marriage was put to the ballot in 2004.

#38 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 08:18 PM | Reply

many cultures recognize the marriage construct without ever visiting a courthouse or filing papers.

Yours isn't among them.

#39 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 08:20 PM | Reply

Financial power provides you with the opportunity for a higher standard of living, but has nothing to do with survival.

Survival?
Where'd that come from?
Nobody is talking about survival but you.

#40 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 08:23 PM | Reply

And those with the power almost always get there because society gave it to them.

How about America, did England give us power, or did we take it from them?

#41 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 08:27 PM | Reply

many cultures recognize the marriage construct without ever visiting a courthouse or filing papers.
Yours isn't among them.
POSTED BY SNOOFY
------

There are US states which recognize Common Law marriages, with courts supposedly awarding spousal benefits if cohabitating for 5+ yrs or such.

#42 | Posted by GOnoles92 at 2016-09-23 08:37 PM | Reply

Yeah but his isn't one of those, kid.

#43 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 08:43 PM | Reply

Even the mere term "common law marriage" demonstrates such marriages are still legal constructs.

#44 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-23 08:45 PM | Reply

So libertarianism can take or leave slavery, it's compatible with both.
Thanks for that JeffJ.

#32 | POSTED BY SNOOFY

Nice straw man. Thanks for that, Snoofy. If you can point me to a modern day Libertarian who is OK with slavery....

#45 | Posted by JeffJ at 2016-09-23 10:00 PM | Reply

I earn about 90% of the total revenues, which are then allocated more or less equally between myself, my wife, and my two children.

What a bunch of moochers your fat lazy family is.

You're cradling them with communism and it's already made them weak.

You're all about the glorious wonders of capitalism, right?

Kick that fat cow of a wife of yours out of the house and tell her not to return home until she has a job that pays equal to whatever it is you make.

As for your smelly stupid lazy kids. You're literally teaching them to depend on someone else to take care of them. They're turning into welfare whores. If they're not paying their way. Dump them. They're an unnecessary burden.

This is capitalism. And what ever doesn't directly benefit you. Is a waste of your time and resources.

Ditch the family. They're consuming 90% of your revenue, stupid.

#46 | Posted by ClownShack at 2016-09-24 01:29 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Socialism's continuing appeal is so irrational...

Stopped reading right there.

Anyone who'd type that with straight face is irrational enough I could give two ----s what they think.

#47 | Posted by jpw at 2016-09-24 03:50 AM | Reply

How is it that people in the capitalist countries have always had a standard of living far in excess of even the most prosperous socialist country?

www.nationmaster.com

#48 | Posted by jpw at 2016-09-24 03:55 AM | Reply

#19 | Posted by BillJohnson

To think you did so well with your first post on this thread...

#49 | Posted by jpw at 2016-09-24 04:00 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

In order for capitalism to work, everyone has to take care of themselves.

#18 | Posted by boaz

Is that what it's like in the military?

#50 | Posted by jpw at 2016-09-24 04:01 AM | Reply

It works because my empathy for them and my desire to see them happy is greater than what I would buy with the money that would otherwise remain mine to spend. I care about their well-being more than my own. The less I care about someone, the less willing I would be use my money to support their well-being. And I would rather take my hard-earned money and burn it rather than give it to someone like you.

Congrats on your newly found road to recovery! You've taken the first step of admitting you're a ------- sociopath!

#52 | Posted by jpw at 2016-09-24 04:05 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

It will always be popular for those who want the govt to hand them 'freebies' paid for by others.

#54 | Posted by MSgt at 2016-09-24 12:12 PM | Reply

"It's only an enemy of unpopular personal freedoms."

Like being able to determine what the money you make is spent on?

"It will always be popular for those who want the govt to hand them 'freebies' paid for by others."

It goes deeped than that. Karl Marx was inspired to write the Kommunist Manifesto after realizing that a free society would never value him as much as he valued himself. I think you see a lot of that same mentality in whose who support socialism. When forced to operate in an environment where they're expected to provide something to society, they'll never survive, or at least survive at the level of wealth and luxury they feel entitled to. Socialism is a way for them to force society to do that.

#55 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-24 01:05 PM | Reply

Poor people can't force society to do anything. They wield no power.

#56 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:10 PM | Reply

"Poor people can't force society to do anything. They wield no power."

Unfamiliar with the French Revolution, I see. Or the American Revolution. or look what's going on in Venezuela right now.

#57 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-24 01:12 PM | Reply

If you can point me to a modern day Libertarian

So when you claimed this country was libertarian, you didn't mean modern day libertarian.

Let me guess modern-day Libertarians are exactly the same as the good old days Libertarians except on that one issue of slavery. Is that it?

#58 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:14 PM | Reply

When this nation was founded 90% of the federal budget was spent on the department of War. I didn't know Libertarians are such warmongers JeffJ thanks for that too.

#59 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:15 PM | Reply

It's entirely possible that MadBomber keeps himself as the financial cornerstone of his household in order to exert control over the other family members.

Essentially keeping his wife captive with a handout she can't get anywhere else, because she lacks the skills to get a top tier job.

#60 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:21 PM | Reply

How exactly is the French Revolution anything more than the poor taking from the rich?

#61 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:24 PM | Reply

But if your argument is a revolution is how the poor get some political power the relative scarcity of revolutions suggests the poor don't have much political power.

#62 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:26 PM | Reply

MadBomber, when Dr. Jonas Salk decided to give away his polio vaccine for free, rather than earn the estimated $7 billion www.forbes.com it would have got on the market, how much harm did he cause? I mean, beyond the $7 billion he didn't get, how much harm was done to all those people like you and I who got the free vaccine, didn't get polio, and didn't die?

#63 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:34 PM | Reply

"Essentially keeping his wife captive with a handout she can't get anywhere else, because she lacks the skills to get a top tier job."

Who said she lacked the skills? I would hazard a guess that she's far more employable than you are.

Part of the whole "libertarian" dream includes the freedom not to work if you don't want to. But it would be hard for me to argue that she should be drawing a paycheck from the public coffers simply because she was fortunate enough to be born in the company of those who do earn wealth.

"I mean, beyond the $7 billion he didn't get, how much harm was done to all those people like you and I who got the free vaccine, didn't get polio, and didn't die?"

Another facet of the "libertarian" dream is the freedom to do what you want with the wealth you have created. And if you want to give it away, so be it. But that's pretty different than having it stripped from you because someone else would prefer not to pay for it.

#64 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-24 01:50 PM | Reply

But if you were to mandate that surgeons were going to be required to provide their services for free, what you would see is a whole lot of surgeons looking for a new line of work.

#65 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-24 01:51 PM | Reply

t will always be popular for those who want the govt to hand them 'freebies' paid for by others.
#54 | POSTED BY MSGT

Like my right to a trial by jury, and my right to have a public defender appointed if I can't afford a lawyer. Like my public school education. You are opposed to those things yeah?

I'm going to guess you got drafted because there's no reason you'd become a master sergeant and fight for things that you don't believe in. You're no MadBomber.

#66 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:55 PM | Reply

But if you were to mandate that surgeons were going to be required to provide their services for free

How's the argument with the voices in your head going, MadB?
Are you winning or will they just not shut up?

#67 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:57 PM | Reply

Another facet of the "libertarian" dream is the freedom to do what you want with the wealth you have created.?

That's hardly exclusive to libertarians.
Anyway, how much harm did the polio vaccine handout cause?

#68 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:58 PM | Reply

Part of the whole "libertarian" dream includes the freedom not to work if you don't want to.

How is that any different than life on the Democrat plantation?

#69 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 01:59 PM | Reply

#66 | POSTED BY SNOOFY AT 2016-09-24 01:55 PM | FLAG: Your comment, ignorant as usual, and BTW, there was no Air Force draft - that was for the Army.

#70 | Posted by MSgt at 2016-09-24 03:40 PM | Reply

"How is that any different than life on the Democrat plantation?"

The democrat plantation pays you to vote...not to work. Actually, scratch that. The "progressive plantation" is a better descriptor. There are many rational, hard working, value-adding Democrats. It's hard to be any of those things if you're a progressive.

#71 | Posted by madbomber at 2016-09-24 04:23 PM | Reply

The democrat plantation pays you to vote...not to work

Then why does the democrat plantation pay so many felons, who cant vote?

#72 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 05:10 PM | Reply

Your comment, ignorant as usual, and BTW, there was no Air Force draft - that was for the Army.

So you grudgingly swore to defend my Constitutionally guaranteed handouts?
Hey, whatever works.

#73 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 05:12 PM | Reply

73 | POSTED BY SNOOFY AT 2016-09-24 05:12 PM | FLAG: Do you even understand what you post? Voluntarily joined the AF and was proud to serve for 21 years. I pretty much realize you would never have served, BUT during the Vietnam era I do believe that [after reading many of your posts] you would have definitely qualified for Project 100,000 ;)

#74 | Posted by MSgt at 2016-09-24 09:40 PM | Reply

Did you join the Air Force rather than get drafted based on your lottery number

#75 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-24 10:00 PM | Reply

Still wondering why so many felons are allowed on the plantation. Why don't they kick them off?

#76 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-09-25 10:36 AM | Reply

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