Proponents of Socialism are among the most frustrating people to debate. Why? Because they are “right” in every circumstance. Not because their arguments are logical, but because if they say it is so, it is so.
So, how exactly do you bust their arguments? How do you cut through the whiny, irrational emotional drivel? There are five tried and true methods for persuading even the most ardent socialists that capitalism truly is the best.
There is abundant factual evidence that capitalism is superior to socialism. This evidence is in plain sight and doesn’t even require cherry-picking numbers from a difficult to read table. In fact, these experiential facts are more convincing than simply a number characterizing one philosophical point or another.
Fact: the greatest scientific and technological achievements have come from free-market, capitalist countries. Profit-seeking companies have found ways to efficiently manufacture the most amazing innovations, procedures, and medications, saving countless lives and improving many more.
Fact: artistic and human expression are both repressed, often brutally, in socialist countries. Where the human spirit has prevailed to produce works of art in oppressive regimes, they must often be smuggled out and the creators' lives are usually in grave danger.
Fact: to prevent “brain drain,” many socialist countries impose strict restrictions on emigration. Capitalist countries don’t need to do this. If you want to leave, leave! If you have something to offer, please come and join us!
Socialism appeals to emotion. As a capitalist, you’ll never be able to compete with that, so we recommend you don’t try. You simply can’t win with more teary-eyed stories about saving the poor, unwashed masses.
Have you ever had someone tell you that we need socialized medicine because a relative of theirs was denied a particular medicine by their insurance company? Or, that they were dealing with the burden of an illness and they had to complete paperwork. Perhaps a person succumbed to the illness and the hospital sent them a bill for services rendered
You are supposed to roll over and say, “Oh that’s awful! I guess we really do need socialized medicine. I’m so sorry for thinking otherwise. Can you forgive me?”
The very idea is insane. Ask anyone whose healthcare is “paid for” by the NHS in the UK or the single-payer Medicare in Canada, not to be confused with the program of the same name for seniors in the United States, if they were ever denied a certain medication or forced to fill out the paperwork!
Of course, they have! In order for these systems to function sustainably, they must ration. They must select less expensive and sometimes less effective medications or procedures so as not to drain the system for everyone else.
One of the facts that seems to raise the blood pressure of advocates for socialism is the sheer brutality and mortality associated with the implementation of this supposedly utopian ideology.
Estimates for the number of dead under socialistic regimes run into the hundreds of millions. But what about capitalism? Hasn’t capitalism killed too? This is like comparing apples and orangutans.
Socialism as a governmental ideology forces top-down control, centralized planning, and economics; as well as a system of involuntary servitude on its subjects. Capitalism is not a government ideology at all. In fact, at the heart of capitalism is the free market and the belief that individuals are best left to determine their own course in life.
In a socialist country, healthcare is free! In a socialist country, college is free! Have you ever heard this, and thought, “how can we compete with that?”
The answer is simple. You can’t and you don’t have to. Nothing is free. Education, healthcare, college, food, housing; none of it is free. Just because the government provides something doesn’t make it “free.”
People had to labor to build the prison-like apartment blocs that you’ll be receiving for “free.” Doctors had to spend years in school to learn to treat the diseases you have for “free.”
Even if you were to imagine a system where a doctor would provide healthcare in return for another person providing them food, it still isn’t free! This would just be trading and bartering services, which is something that people did before any of this socialist nonsense was in vogue.
Instead of it being free, the government will impose on you a hefty confiscatory tax. How much? That depends: how much ya got?
This is my favorite. This is the equivalent of when we were kids, and someone would say, “I love [this thing]” and you said, “Well if you love it so much, why don’t you marry it?”
So, ask them, “why haven’t you packed your bags for the heavily nationalized nations of Cuba, Venezuela or North Korea?” And no, when they move to Cuba we don’t mean staying in one of the gorgeous resorts owned by capitalist corporations like Iberostar or Melia, we mean living like one of the locals.
Ask them why they aren’t currently looking for a “free” apartment in Pyongyang!
You should also remind them that they don’t even need to leave to be a true socialist. Any time they like, they can form a little commune with anyone they want, pool all their resources and give it a try right here in the good ol’ USA.
Of course, this would require some work, and we know how socialists feel about that.