What is socialism?
Socialism is generally defined by socialists as either worker control over the means or production or some negation of capitalism which usually translates to the abolishment of private property. Okay, fine. But there is something even deeper to all of this which is often overlooked.
Socialists share certain characteristics between each other on a personal level the same way capitalists share certain characteristics. This is no different than how certain religions share certain characteristics as well. Christians have certain ethics, Muslims have certain ethics, Jews, Buddhists and so on. Different religions mold people a certain way. And certain people are attracted to certain religions based off of their foundational outlook on life. Even if you're born into a religion you may leave it if it no longer resonates with you at a deep level. If you no longer agree with parts of Christianity you may leave it.
So we have this going on with socialism. Yes, it is an ideology that is about the definition that was stated earlier. But why a group of people want that definition is the important thing to look at.
Freedom means a different thing to socialists
Everybody wants more freedom. It doesn't matter where you come from or who you are. More freedom is seen as essential to everyone. The difference is that freedom means very different things to different people.
To a capitalist freedom generally means the ability to do as you wish so long as you don't harm another person. To a socialist freedom generally means freedom from some type of negative that is holding you down. This is an important realization to understand. Socialists view the very concept of freedom in a completely different way than capitalists. Socialists view freedom as forcing a group to do something to make everyone free. Capitalists view freedom as leaving everyone alone. They're basically opposites. One is leaving people alone the other is not leaving people alone and attempting to manage and re-balance something.
From the capitalist perspective freedom to a socialist translates to security over freedom. Many capitalists favor freedom over security. Socialists are okay forfeiting being left alone for making sure that people have what they need to be free in their version of freedom: ie: healthcare, basic income, etc. Socialists are okay with not leaving people alone to ensure that their version of freedom exists. Most socialists want some type of social justice or equality or something like this. And in order to have this you can't simply leave people alone. You have to intervene in some way with other people's lives and initiate force on them.
Socialists don't want people to have to struggle. Socialists don't want some people to unfairly have more than others. Socialists want to even the playing field as much as possible. Class inequality and income inequality are big parts of socialism.
And I get why this is appealing to so many people. On the face of it it sounds like a moral and just movement to get behind. Who doesn't want to see poor people with more and people who are disadvantaged helped? Almost everyone agrees with this. Where people disagree is the price it costs to do this and the results of whether the ideology itself actually fulfills this mission.
Self help and socialism
The problem with socialism is that the more you look into it the more you find that it is against the most foundational and important principles taught by the worlds best philosophers and teachers. The teachings of socialism are counter to the teachings found in self help and personal development. Let's take a look.
Socialism isn't so much about an ideology that shapes you as an individual, but rather an ideology that conforms to your current level of evolution. This is similar to religion, as I stated earlier. We stay with whatever religion validates and resonates with our foundational beliefs about life. This is why it is extremely hard to leave religion and why most people stick with the religion they're born into.
And not all religions are created equally. While all religions' goal is to help people, some religions help people more in certain areas and less in other areas. Some religions trap people and keep them from growing. I think we are all well aware of this. We may not see it on our religion, but we see it with other religions.
This is the case with socialism. We don't grow from socialism. We are what we are and then look for the ideology that matches with our low quality personal development habits or we are born into a socialist family and hold on to that ideology. Socialism isn't an ideology that requires a high level individual. It is a base ideology that requires very little effort or work from people. Socialism is a very attractive ideology to lower level people. I hate to put it that way but somebody has to.
Manly P. Hall sums it up perfectly:
The majority of mankind neither desires to improve itself nor to support an organization which demands a high degree of integrity.
This is socialism. It does not demand a high degree of integrity nor does it demand members with the desire to improve themselves. This is how most people are. Most people don't want to improve themselves which is why so many people are not interested in self help and would instead rather spend hours on Facebook posting pictures of themselves over and over again getting the same responses over and over again. This is better than growth to most people. People don't want to read. People don't want to challenge themselves. People want to be entertained. People find fake solace in perpetually the same entertainment rather than true joy in incremental growth and expansion.
Things didn't go my way ?? Life is hard ??
Removing evil vs overcoming evil
I recently came across a statement made by Jordan Peterson a few months back and it completely made everything about socialism click for me. The statement Jordan Peterson made was something along the lines of:
Socialism is like the story in the Garden of Eden. Socialists want to remove the very concept of evil from the face of the earth rather than overcome evil.
This is a profound statement and it's exactly right. This has nothing to do with means of production or anti-capitalism, as socialists generally state. This is much deeper than that. This is getting at the true foundational ideological nature of socialism. Socialism has everything to do with removing all discomfort, all work, all friction and anything else that strengthens you as a human and as a spirit. And living this way is a very dark and naive way of viewing life in my most humble opinion, and it goes counter to what all the greats have taught us.
You see, we understand that we grow the most when we face adversity. We understand that our muscles are strengthened by using them. When we don't use our muscles they atrophy. Our mind is strengthened by using it. We grow when we rub up against friction -- it sharpens us. And the entire socialist mindset is based around removing friction. The socialist mindset is about removing things which challenge us and cause us to grow. The socialist mindset is about removing evil, not overcoming evil.
Really let that sink in and think about it. This is fundamental stuff that is often missed. This is counter to self help.
This is the way a losing sports team thinks. Rather than finding a way to overcome their opponent and be stronger they instead try to remove the strength of the other team. Rather than make themselves better they instead want to make others weaker. Rather than reach the stage where negative things do not affect themselves they instead want to remove negative things.
Your immune system doesn't remove disease from the planet to make sure you're healthy. Your immune system knows disease is a part of life and instead finds ways above it. Your immune system strengthens itself to where disease does not hold power over itself. This is the exact same thing with our outlook in life.
A few quotes
We all know this is true in everyday life. The people we respect share this same viewpoint. All the great self help books talk about this and all the people we all respect talk about this:
Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.
Life's supposed to be hard. We can't skip over the hard parts. We must earn what we receive.
Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
We all want the good things of life; we all desire to be surrounded by friends; but we have no right to expect to attract any of these things except when our own lives have earned us the right to be honored, respected, and admired.
I can accept failure, but I can't accept not trying.
Safe is risky
Pray not for lighter burdens, but for stronger backs.
I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.
Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.
The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.
Contrast this with a socialist quote:
No one should ever work.
There is a growth that comes from overcoming adversity. That's just the way it is. And if you run away from challenges and adversity you will defer growth. You will defer strength. Deferring growth is a foundational archetype for socialism.
Good Habits vs Bad Habits
Socialists will say that they care about poor people and want to help them. This really isn't the case. It's not that socialists don't care about poor people, but rather, they hate rich people. Socialists would rather see everyone poor than some people middle class and some people rich. Socialists are envious and hateful of rich people. All you need to do is talk to a socialist. And this envy is tantamount to lower quality people.
And it doesn't stop with just envy. Socialists practice the habits of unsuccessful people while capitalists are much more practicing of the habits of successful people.
Take a look:
Look at the unsuccessful people side.
- Have a sense of entitlement - Socialists feel they are entitled to things simply for being human. Socialists want to steal from productive people and give it to unproductive people. Socialists feel that they are victims who are held down by the evil capitalists who produce.
- Criticize - Socialists criticize capitalism. Their very ideology itself isn't a creation of what can be done -- it's a negation of what to remove. They want to destroy capitalism rather than build something better.
- Hold a grudge - Socialists hold a grudge against rich people. Shame on your for producing! If you're rich you're lucky! If you're rich you inherited it!
- Blame others for their failures - This is a big one with socialists. Low quality people never take credit for their mistakes. When socialism is attempted throughout the world and has a track record of millions of deaths and utter failure most socialists don't take credit for it. They write it off as "not real socialism" and call it "state-capitalism" or some other label. Socialists can't possibly fathom that something isn't right with their ideology and as such it isn't socialism that's wrong, it's everything else.
- Think they know it all - Socialists think they have the answer to everything. They are completely arrogant and you will never hear them say I don't know, or, you may be right.
- Secretly hope others fail - Their entire ideology is built on capitalism failing -- despite their ideology also requiring capitalism to pave the way so they can steal the wealth of it. Think about that. Their ideology requires capitalism as the ground work, yet they hate capitalism.
We could go on and on with countless more examples. The common theme of this is that socialism is a mentality for less successful people. Socialism is a loser mentality. Socialism is a victim mentality of people that see themselves as helpless victims that are held down. These are not good habits.
This is the opposite mentality of self help. In self help you are taught that you have power over your own life. In self help you are educated not to be a victim and to take responsibility for yourself and your choices. In self help you are accountable.
In socialism you just blame everyone but yourself. In socialism you end up where you do because you're a victim, it has nothing to do with choices you make and your mindset.
But socialists care about poor people!
But wait you say! Socialists are all about helping those in need! You don't care about poor people! Have a heart!
Socialists say it's about helping those in need... but how do they go about doing this? Well, they redistribute goods to poor people. They force people who have something to give it to people that don't. That's called theft.
If somebody chooses to work harder and more than others to create a surplus is it right to then take that from them and give it to somebody that didn't? That's theft. If you really want to help poor people you should help them with your own resources. This is the whole point of charity. Oh, and by the way, capitalists give way more to charity than socialists.
This is an important point which requires a bit of discussion.
Socialists conflate choices with circumstance.
Of course some people are born disabled or with some type of handicap that makes it virtually impossible for them to succeed to the level of a non-handicapped person. But that's not most people. That's like 1% of people. In 1st world countries, capitalist nations with relatively free markets, people have the ability to make choices and be whatever they want to be for the most part. Sure, you may not start rich, but you have the ability to end rich if you want. It's up to the choices and decisions you make along the way. And guess what? By their choices most people don't want to be rich, which is totally fine. That's what freedom is all about. Be whatever you want to be.
Socialists incorrectly ascribe most poverty to circumstance, as if poor people are somehow victims and ended up there by no doing of their own. Anybody who has been around poor people at all knows this simply isn't the case. Poor people make different choices than rich people. Go back to the habits chart. Poor people practice way more bad habits while rich people practice more good habits. It's not complicated. It's just not comfortable to be honest about (honesty being another good habit which socialists lack).
So socialists act as if everyone who is poor is a victim. This is the opposite of self help and it is a bad habit. You don't get out of poverty by blaming others. You get out of poverty by taking responsibility for where you are and figuring out what you need to do to change your reality. You make choices and you become accountable.
When you abandon making choices, you enter the vast world of excuses.
And for that small percentage of people that are disabled and have unfortunate circumstances happen we have charity and plenty of wealth to help them. And this again gets into the topic of charity. If you really care about helping disabled people then you would have to support private charity through churches and other voluntary institutions. When charity is done through state welfare an estimated 80% of the funds are lost through bureaucracy, fees and all the other waste that comes with government administration.
But real socialists aren't for big government and state welfare you say. First that's a lie. Socialists support almost all government programs because they see it as a bandaid solution. Second, great, you should have no problem with voluntary charity then.
Voluntary charity actually watches people and works with them to develop good habits that make them self-sustainable, as opposed to dependent. You know, kind of like good parenting. It's basic stuff. We want to teach people to fish, not give them a fish. Voluntary charity is concerned with teaching people to fish because the charity is funded when it helps people and produces results.
When the government administers charity it doesn't matter if they get results and help people. The government collects taxes regardless. In fact, the worse job the government does the more tax dollars they receive and the larger the poverty problem is that they need more money to help "fix". It's almost as if they purposefully don't want to help people.
World poverty declines because of capitalism
World poverty continues to decline every year because of capitalism:
It's not socialism that is helping poor people, it's capitalism. As capitalism increases throughout the world poverty decreases throughout the world. As capitalism spreads poverty decreases and wealth increases. There are various technical reasons as to why this is which are beyond the scope of this article. Suffice to say capitalism practices principles of self help which create stronger, higher quality people that in turn creates more wealth and prosperity. It's not rocket science. It's just self help.
Let people live their lives as they want. Leave them alone. Invite people to your way of thinking, don't force them. And if they don't do what you want maybe it's not because they don't have a heart, but rather because they're not a naive student of life looking for the weakest ideology to grab on to to procrastinate the journey of awaking their consciousness and growing in life. Maybe it's less about attaching to the easiest option and instead reaching for something much greater.
It's hard to be a socialist and champion self development because you realize that self development is an individual thing. Self actualization is something that you create within, not without.
The very nature of self help goes against socialism. When you see somebody who had something unfair happen to them under socialism you say "something must be done!!!" while under self help / capitalism you say, "grow from it and move on".
In socialism when you are born poor you say, "rich people suck, they're all so lucky, I can never be rich! I hate evil capitalism". In self help / capitalism you say, "how can I become like them? How can I end my poverty? What choices and actions can I take to become what I want to become?"
It's all so basic. I could go on and on with this stuff. It's sad that I have to talk about this stuff and people can't just realize it on their own. Why don't people realize that socialists are losers with a victim mentality? I don't mean this in a derogatory way. I mean it like losers in a football game. They are losing in life and of course they're going to make excuses and try to bring others down. Of course they're going to call other people privileged and lucky and completely discount any work or growth on the other person's part. This is what sore losers do. They point the finger at everyone except themselves. And this is the opposite of self help. You don't help by enabling, you help by confronting.
Grow up guys. You will remain a victim for as long as you identify as a victim. As soon as you put on your big boy pants, grow up and change your mentality and being, then you will truly care less about what others do and more about what you do. Then you will start to walk away from the crutch of socialism and into the realm of self help and infinite possibility.
Filed under:Personal Development, Socialism, Self Help, I'm A Victim, Hard Work Privilege, Rich Envy, 3rd Grader Strategy, The Easy Path, Sitting At The Toddler Table, Keeping The Diapers On