Socialism is Racist: How Capitalism Counters Bigotry

Thursday, July 23, 2020 1:13 PM

By Mario J. Lomuscio 

The contrast between capitalism and socialism could not be more clear. Capitalism is the great equalizer in the fight against racism, and it is the socialist ideology that so often and so easily coexists with bigotry. Throughout history, excesses of centralized State power have tended toward elitist State officials who are all too comfortable with indulging their false sense of superiority by lording it over the general citizenry. Socialism, defined as the State control over the means of production, goes hand in hand with the power of the State to control who the State produces for, and who the State can coerce into forced labor in the service of that production. A brief review of history can easily illustrate this inconvenient truth.  

First up: the far left National Socialist German Worker’s Party, more commonly referred to as, the Nazi Party. Anyone with a cursory knowledge of World War II history is aware of Hitler’s racist obsession with building an Aryan master race. When the Nazis took over Germany they immediately consolidated power for a massive centralized government which enabled them to engage in some of the worlds most egregious human rights atrocities ever recorded. The Nazis viewed themselves as superior to the Jewish community and other minorities. Thus, they found no moral fault in abusing those they thought to be beneath them, all at the behest of an all powerful centralized government. Centralized power goes hand in hand with bigotry. 

The United States is not exempt from this principle. When the federal government is given broad power over industry and society, the same pattern of bigotry closely follows here in the US. The institution of federal Jim Crow laws under Progressive Socialist Woodrow Wilson in 1914, serves as one such example. Wilson rejected the Declaration of Independence and dismissed the American creed that all men were created equal. He advocated the “practical means of realizing for society the principles of socialism”.  

Another unmistakable example would be the massive consolidation of federal power under Democratic Socialist Franklin Delano Roosevelt. While FDR wasn’t a Marxist true to form, he is still credited with being a giant among modern progressives and socialists alike. It was only after massively expanding the power of the federal government that Roosevelt was able to inhumanly round up Japanese American citizens and throw them into internment camps. Side note: FDR is also the only president to ever nominate a former Klansman to the Supreme Court. #JustSaying 

A more current example would be modern day Communist China. Here we see all the same patterns of centralized control, superior central planners/bureaucratic elites, and the bigotry that inevitably follows. China’s sweatshops and slave labor camps are cruelly filled with Uighur Muslims among other ethnic minorities according to multiple reports from Fox, the New York Times, Forbes, and others. Reports also indicate that Christians are being denied aid from the Chinese government unless they renounce their faith. Different country, same bigotry. 

Consider now the alternative to socialism: Free market capitalism. Bigotry has no place in the capitalist free enterprise system for one simple reason: It costs too much. Under capitalism, where the rights of the individual are enshrined, where private property rights flourish, and where profit motive works in harmony with voluntary exchange, there is no room for bigotry. A business owner that refuses to serve certain ethnic or  minority groups only harms himself by limiting his potential customer base. He also alienates any customer who will not patronize a racist owned business. Thus under free market capitalism, the bigot self-imposes inordinate costs that harm his chances of success. Profit motive therefore represents an internal check disincentivizing bigotry; a cost disincentive that does not exist for a massive centralized government. 

Absent excessive government intrusions into the market, bigotry has no air to breath and thus, no way to flourish. Nobel laureate Milton Friedman illustrates this principle perfectly in his book Free to Choose. Friedman describes the seemingly rudimentary task of manufacturing a simple No. 2 pencil. In truth, there is nothing simple about it. He explains how the wood, a straight-grained cedar, must be cut and processed in California. The workers who process the wood need tools and other raw materials that make their job possible. Friedman goes on from there to explain the need for graphite which is mined in Ceylon and he details all the materials needed for that task. The metal ferrule that fastens the eraser to the wood is brass which requires workers to process zinc and copper. The eraser, which is made with “factise” is processed by reacting rapeseed oil from Indonesia with sulfur chloride. All of these complicated elements all come together to form a simple common pencil. Here is what’s truly amazing: 

“None of the thousands of persons involved in producing the pencil performed his task because he wanted a pencil. Some among them never even saw a pencil and would not know what it is for. Each saw his work as a way to get the goods and services he wanted – goods and services we produced in order to get the pencil WE wanted…It is even more astounding that the pencil was ever produced. No one sitting in a central office gave orders to these thousands of people. No military police enforced the orders that were not given. These people live in many lands, speak different languages, practice different religions, may even hate each other — yet none of these differences prevented them from cooperating to produce a pencil.” 

That’s free market capitalism! 

So, when socialists attack capitalism, know that it is the capitalist who sits on the Right side of history. No other system has so indiscriminately lifted more people out of poverty and destitution than free market capitalism. Capitalism truly does constitute the rising tide that lifts all boats regardless of any and all differences. Free market capitalism is the most successful economic doctrine ever established. Socialism by contrast, can only exist by seizing upon the wealth created by free market capitalism. No other system of thought, nor political ideology has done more damage, killed more people, or otherwise inflicted more harm to humanity, than socialism. The contrast between socialism and capitalism could not be more clear.