posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 04:59 PM
reply to post by hawkiye
There is no one state or one period where you could locate working Socialism. You could point to various measures and practices in various places that
come close to Socialist ideas, such as certain measures by Mr. Chavez in Venezuela, some practices by the Swedish government in the sixties and the
seventies, or the town voting system of the Dutch.
That is because true Socialism is not the state-owned capitalism the Soviets or the Maoists practiced. It is essentially a grassroots, bottom-up way
of organizing society, based on real values and not fake ones (like "selling futures"). Socialism has always been a critical philosophy, which means
it knows what it does not want (exploitation and gross inequality), but - contrary to what Lenin and Stalin asserted - it does not force ideals upon
people by a central state authority. Today's Socialism has everything to do with the rights of indigenous peoples, environmentalism, and women's
rights (see the essay by Engels, On the Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State).
The point is when people are blackmailed by the continuation of their mere material existence, you will have a status quo based on lies and power,
which is, as Marx pointed out, not so different from the power of kings and priests over citizens. In fact it has historically been derived from that
very same central power.
Another point few bring up here is the "original accumulation of capital".
You could point to history and see that working Capitalism has developed only in countries that either have had colonies, or a situation like the
exploitation of slaves in the US (with all the free land grabbed from Natives). True, these are also the places where the ideals of democracy first
However, try and bring any example from a country that lives under a successful capitalist system today and has never had any colonies, even
internally (e.g. the so-called Austro-Hungarian empire used Hungary as well as parts of Poland pretty much as a colony for a German-speaking Austrian
Empire. The same goes for the Russian empire.) Perhaps there are a few exceptions, like South Korea. SK did not allow total "free trade" for a
number of decades after the war though, it was pursuing a policy of heavy taxes on foreign goods and foreign capital. When that was broken by the
"free trade" people in 1997, an economic crisis ensued.