Das Kapital, Dude: Polling Shows Sharp Rise In Support For Socialism Among The Young

Polling in the United States and internationally is showing a sharp increase in support for socialism among young people.  Support for capitalism is waning as a new generation embraces views of collective economic policies and programs. Two hundred years after the birth of Karl Marx, his views are now coming back into vogue despite a long history of economic failures in socialist countries.

A new poll conducted June 11-25 by Momentive on behalf of Axios found that a majority (57% of U.S. adults) still have a favorable view of capitalism. However, the most notable data point is age. Those 18-34 now are evenly split on negative and positive views of capitalism. (46% vs. 49%). The dislike for capitalism rises further at younger age groups.  For those 18 to 24, the negative views outweighing positive views by a margin of 54% to 42%.

The other groups showing stronger support for socialism are black and female Americans (60% and 45%, respectively).

The same swing is being reported internationally. A new poll by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) shows younger people growing opposing to capitalism and support for socialism. The paper includes a Forefront Market Research poll of people aged between 16 and 34 in the UK. An astonishing  67 per cent say they would like to live in a socialist economic system.

The fact is that none of the Western countries are entirely capitalistic in the sense of a pure market system with no social welfare programs. They are premised on capitalistic values while creating extensive social programs to expand opportunity and support those who are impoverished. At the same time, China has a long line of billionaires who have profited handsomely from the adoption of capitalist principles and market systems.

Notably, 75 percent view climate change is a specifically capitalist problem despite the terrible record of China and other socialist countries in the area of pollution and climate change.

Nevertheless, capitalism is being blamed for an increasing number of disasters. Recently, Professor Richard Wolf, professor emeritus of economics at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, blamed “privatized housing” for the recent collapse of the Champlain Towers South in Surfside, Florida.

Wolf tweeted on June 30 that “Miami’s collapsed condo shows: privatized housing violates democracy. Only condo owners voted to defer building repair. Delivery workers, condo visitors, repairers knew nothing, didn’t vote, risked injury, death. As irreducibly social, housing must be run democratically by all.”

As with climate change, the point ignores the building collapses  and lax enforcement in socialist countries. Central control has never translated to better building codes or pollution policies.

The shift in favor of socialism is no surprise for some of us. My kids were often given material and lessons in their public high schools that criticized capitalism while rarely pointing out the failures of socialist countries like Venezuela.

Indeed, Venezuela continues to receive support despite a blood-soaked regime that has destroyed free press and free speech rights as well as reducing the country into an economic basket case. Recently, the Democratic Socialists of America (which claims supporters in Congress) visited Venezuelan dictator, Nicolas Maduro.  Previously, we discussed the delegation of Chicago Teachers visiting the country and showering it with praise as political prisoners languished in the jails of Maduro.

The pandemic has led to a massive increase in government spending which is also likely to shape the views of many on the benefits of government controls and centralized programs.  These polls show a generation coming to age that is ready to embrace aspects of Marx’s Das Kapital over Smith’s Wealth of Nations.

 

 

 

180 thoughts on “Das Kapital, Dude: Polling Shows Sharp Rise In Support For Socialism Among The Young”

  1. Conservatives should listen to a real conservative and real Republican, Alan Simpson, in the film “Inequality For All” that aired a few years ago. Simpson explains how real capitalism and free market competition works.

    Simpson also points out that as a real conservative, his economic views haven’t changed in several decades. The Republican Party abandoned conservative principles, Simpson never left, his party left him.

    One point Republican Simpson made was that hoarding wealth at the top harms the economy. Middle class Americans having more money in their pockets boosts the economy.

  2. “Labels” are rarely totally accurate. Most of us support some “socialist” programs. We support “socialist” police departments, fire departments, public works, FBI, homeland security and public education – services not spelled out in the U.S. Constitution but in most communities paid for by our tax dollars. Only part of social security is paid by us, the remainder is “socialized” paid by our tax dollars.

    Eisenhower had a top tax rate exceeding 70% and created the “socialized” interstate highway system. Nixon supported “socialized” healthcare that covered every American (similar to England today). In countries like England, people just go to the doctor or hospital. In America someone can work hard and do everything right and go bankrupt from an illness.

    Monopolies, cartels and oligarchies is NOT capitalism with free market competition to improve products and services for consumers at the lowest price. Maybe that’s what the young kids are pointing out – we aren’t that capitalist and aren’t that free market. Since healthy competition with fair rules won’t provide a level playing field (real capitalism) they are supporting those policies.

  3. Most Socialist movements are “vote your way in, shoot your way out” affairs for survivors.

  4. Well, they ate lie Hitler, capturing our youth via indoctrination camps. All the Ivey League schools are pure trash. Yet, we get Supreme Court Justices from them, and they are by and large an embarassment, as are all the politicians, as are 90 percent of the media. The libs stole the Election, YOUN KNOW IT, you you wont call them out, so what mattes anymore Johnathan ?

  5. The youth have well been misled by decades of goobermint indoctrination. When they wake up in a gulag or reeducation center it will be too late for these feeble minded. As stated by one of America’s founders ” those that would sell their freedom for a little security deserve neither “.

      1. That is a question mark. I lived in socialism/communism which was called behind the Iron Curtain. Everyone was forced to work, but people couldn’t pick their jobs. The government did. So, the highly educated people often worked their whole lives manually in factories or mines. Salaries were poor in every position so women had to work too. Socialism is designed that way so that no one lives well.

    1. Yep. Quite simply they prefer socialism because they’re stupid. They are exactly what the gubmint schools have turned them into. As if socialism will work if we try it just one more time…

  6. This is the result of years of socialist indoctrination in our schools; K-12 and colleges. When your kids go against everything our nation has always stood for, thank a union teacher or leftist professor.

    1. How about thank the parents for not paying attention to what their kids are being taught in schools the parents pay for with their taxes. It starts there and yes the teachers, unions(esp), administrators and state and federal education depts. are to blame also but the parents are supposed to be paying attention to their local schools are doing.

  7. While polling shows that support for Socialism is rising sharply among the young, studies are also finding that stupidity and ignorance are at setting record levels among the young. Scientists are attempting to determine if there is a connection. But, unfortunately, those “scientists” are graduates of Leftist Indoctrination Entities (“LIEs), the same institutions where those young people were programmed to love Socialism and Communism, so they are unable to understand any of the data.

  8. Jonathan: No big surprise. Young people both here and in Europe are embracing socialist policies. As a big supporter of the capitalist enterprise this alarms you. So why are these trends occurring? Because young people realize capitalism no long serves their interests. Here in the US they find a good education is beyond their economic means. Even if they are able to get educational loans they have to pay them back to capitalist lending institutions that saddle them with often exorbitant interest for years. Even if they are able to graduate young people cannot find good paying jobs. They can’t find affordable housing so they move back home where, at least, they are covered under the ACA for their health insurance.

    Young people see that the capitalist economic model is breaking down. We saw this in stark relief last year when Covid-19 struck the US. The public health system, neglected for years, was unable to cope with the rapidly spreading coronavirus. Other countries with more centralized public health systems, like in China, were better able to protect their citizens. It took “collective” action by states here to start to get the virus under control. Same with infrastructure. It has been neglected for decades to give massive tax breaks to corporations and the wealthy with little money to repair the roads, bridges and waterways. Young people see how capitalism has failed to provide for the “general welfare”. Wealth is concentrated in the top 1%. The poor and the middle class pay most of the taxes while the wealthy pay little or nothing. Just ask Donald Trump and Jeff Bezos!

    Capitalism in the US started and thrived under slavery. The US became an economic powerhouse because of the exploitation of slave labor. That system persists today in the form of wage slavery and the unequal distribution of the enormous wealth of this country. A sure sign of when the capitalist system no longer serves the interests of the citizens is in times of crisis. After the murder of George Floyd young people, black and white, protested around the country in large numbers. They saw that the police are just the servants of the capitalist enterprise–not to “protect and serve” the citizens. Protecting private property was and is more important than rooting out racist police practices. We saw this play out in Trump’s response to the massive, often violent, reaction to Floyd’s killing. Trump, as a member of the ruling class, recognized the danger to capitalism from the street protests. So Trump called on the military to brutally put down the protests. The Joint Chiefs, recognizing this would violate the constitution, appropriately refused. Had the military gone along with Trump we might now be living under military rule–something that normally happens in third world countries.

    In times of crisis the ruling class is willing to resort to many unconstitutional and undemocratic forms of rule to protect their economic interests. We saw this play out in Germany in the 1930s. A strong man is used to put down popular revolt. Trump understands this dynamic. He admires authoritarian types like Saudi Crown Prince bin Salman who brutally murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Trump defended the Crown Prince because, in a revealing admission, he said that lucrative arms sales to Saudi Arabia were more important then defending human rights. Protecting the interests of the major capitalist arms suppliers was job one for Trump. He also revealed his authoritarian side when he refused to accept the results of last year’s election and instigated an insurrection on Jan. 6 to overturn the election results. No better illustration of how Trump admires fascist dictators is the trip he made in 2018 to France to attend the 100th Anniversary of the end to WW1. With him was his then Chief of Staff John Kelly. In his new book “Frankly, We Did Win This Election”, Michael Bender relates how Kelly was alarmed when Trump told him during the trip that “Hitler did some good things”. Kelly was taken aback by Trump’s praise of Hitler but could not get Trump to change his views.

    I think it is a credit to the voters of this country who voted Trump out of office in huge numbers because they recognized he was a continuing threat to our democratic institutions–at least what is left of them. And young people understand Trump still poses a threat and are willing to embrace socialist policies on healthcare, climate change, infrastructure, free higher education and climate change. Proposals the democratic socialist Bernie Sanders has been pushing for years. But you cling to the capitalist model. However, you don’t explain how it serves the long range interests of what you call the “generation coming of age”. That’s because capitalism makes promises it cannot keep and young people know this.

    1. Slavery does not make a society rich, intellectual capital does. If slavery (or very low wages) made a country wealthy, it didn’t work in Africa or Asia.
      Only when Asia allowed the expansion of intellectual capital did their economies expand rapidly and deeply.
      .
      As for George Floyd, rob a pregnant woman at gunpoint and get a statute,

    2. To paraphrase H.L. Mencken, I hope all of you younger voters get what you think is best, and you get it good and hard.

    3. Everything you have said is factually incorrect. This is a flat out lie. If you are an young person and reading this and thinking it makes sense, stop. It does not. It is propaganda and lies.

    4. hey mac ; you speak like a prog propagandist. So in your analogy of hitler if someone said that stalin did some good things would you knee jerk praise that or would you condemn that evil man for the 21 million souls he murdered through famine and bloshevik terror ?. See how that works huh.
      Fascism/socialism is the same pernicious cancer from the same diseased family tree. Both guarantee bigger oppressive government and a certainty that freedoms and rights are very limited. Along with indoctrination from said ruling prog elites. Do their bidding or else….. same old story same old lies , just a generation of mush for brains that can not think nor will think for themselves. Sheeple by any other definition. And you sir are one of those tropes leading the lambs to the slaughter.

    5. Can’t have communist without cannibalism. If the young think the future is bleak now, the surprise on their collective faces after few years in communism. Capitalism still offers the best chance for upward mobility. What you call capitalism is cronyism, which is a precursor to fascism or communism. So if you don’t like what you see now; you definitely won’t like communism.

  9. Seeing that so many people my age support leftist ideas leaves me speechless and terrified. I just hope somehow we can lead them away from that sorry excuse for an ideology.

  10. I sometimes wonder whether Turley shrewdly brings up topics such as Marxism which is utterly irrelevant to the purported focus of this free speech forum in order to distract us from more material controversies recently making the headlines, to wit:

    “Tucker Carlson: NSA has been reading my private emails, planned to leak the contents.”

    https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/tucker-carlson-nsa-has-been-reading-my-private-emails-planned-to-leak-the-contents.amp

    This is a HUGE story if true. Yet no one else at Fox News is reporting this breaking news.

    Will Professor Turley defend his Fox colleague against the so-called “Deep State” allegedly leaking Carlson’s private emails in an attempt to force him off the air as he claims?

    As a free speech advocate, how can Turley not come to the aid of his Fox brethren?

    1. I want to update my own post. It seems that Carlson was interviewed about his NSA allegations on Fox Business as reported by thehill.com:

      https://thehill.com/homenews/media/561901-tucker-carlson-claims-nsa-leaked-private-emails-to-journalists?amp

      Glenn Greenwald appeared on Carlson’s show tonight to bash the NSA. Where, oh, where is Turley, Fox News’ legal analyst? Why isn’t he standing shoulder to shoulder with the Trumpist Carlson?

  11. “[We gave you] a republic, if you can keep it.”

    – Ben Franklin
    ___________

    But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and
    to provide new Guards for their future security.

    – Declaration of Independence, 1776

  12. This is a great read. The article is somewhat lengthy, but very instructive on this topic.

    By the end of 2016, I no longer identified as a communist and soon renounced the Left entirely. I’d tried on almost every kind of Marxism, including Marxism-Leninism, Trotskyism, Maoism, and even left communism, and not one of them fit me. As it turned out, something within me incessantly rebelled against the dogmatism. It infringed my sense of intellectual independence.

    I came to see the inherent totalitarianism of Marxism. I soon realized that there was no way to establish socialism-communism without force. I recognized, contrary to Marx’s animadversions to the contrary, that all socialism is utopian, and that utopianism is just totalitarianism in waiting. There is no way to establish some people’s idea of utopia without squelching if not obliterating other people’s rights. I saw the same characteristics in the Left in general and became a civil libertarian, advocating for individual rights above all else.
    https://mises.org/wire/how-marxist-twenty-five-years-became-misesian-libertarian

      1. Uncle Tom has done very well.

        Can we stop paying for and get rid of generational welfare, affirmative action, quotas, forced busing, social services, non-discrimination, fair housing, public housing, rent control, minimum wage, WIC, SNAP, TANF, HAMP, HARP, TARP, HUD, HHS, Social Security, SSI, Medicare, Obamacare and the rest of the unconstitutional American welfare state yet?

        Can we have our private property back?

        What good is it if you rely on “free stuff” from stealing other people’s money for your success?

        1. George, we don’t have significant disagreements regarding the federal government’s intrusion into our private lives. However, it will always exist to some extent. We have to learn to live with it while making it as palatable as we can.

  13. Leftist Trends In U.S. Is Backlash Against Republicans And Koch Bros

    If one looks at the world from the perspective of American Millennials, they grew up hearing, over and over about the ‘virtues’ of low taxes, deregulation and so-called ‘free markets’. Then the Great Recession hit!

    The Great Recession alone probably convinced a large percentage of Millennials that something was deeply wrong with capitalism. Yet Republicans seemed far more concerned with defeating Obama than dealing with the recession.

    For 12 years Republicans have been obsessed with repealing Obamacare while failing to offer any realistic alternative. In the minds of Millennials, it appears that Republicans consider healthcare a privilege. Which seems utterly hypocritical when Republicans claim to be so concerned with ‘life’. Beyond the abortion issue ‘life’ means nothing to Republicans; a fact Millennials clued into a long time ago.

    1. Millennials do not commonly buy health insurance because their odds of sickness or injury are very low. Under Obamacare if they didn’t comply as part of the collective and buy insurance they were required to pay a penalty of $695.00. https://www.healthcare.gov/fees/fee-for-not-being-covered/ . There was a phrase going around amongst millennials at the time. The phrase was “Thanks Obama”. Millennials should recognize what the fruits of their support for socialism will be. There has been and there will be a price to pay for non compliance.

      1. Thinkitthrough, the poll finds that Millennials have definite socialist leanings. That’s the reality on the ground. But instead of acknowledging that, you just want to argue about Obamacare. Obviously someone’s wrong but you can’t deal with it.

        1. Anonymous, I made the point about the penalty of $695.00 because it effect mostly young people. I simply offered a reminder of what government control can do. The subject is about socialist government control and the Obamacare penalty is a perfect example of how such controls can effect the lives of millennials. Sorry you couldn’t make the connection.

          1. To add to this thought , imagine goobermint supplied ‘obammy care’ where you must take the blue pill …or else. Look at the current HHS stooge as he is basically saying the goobermint has the right to know if you are a pin cushion for their blue pill covid poison or the enemy. New Zealand has announced it is tracking down all the red pilled citizens and will give them the blue pill or else. This is the permicious nature of ALL forms of social fascism….. jamming all pegs regardless of shape in a one size government made hole…cogs if you will where deviation to goobermint doctrine is verboten.

    2. ANON – You are either naive, ignorant or stupid. The great resession reset begin the last Sunday night in Sept 2008. America begin Socialism that Sunday night when the Feds begin the quanatative easing monies to banks, etc., and begin Gov’t guarantees of Loans made from People as Warren Buffett ( Loans to Goldman Sachs, etc with Set perferred Dividend payments and low conversions to common stock latter on). The door was then wide open for a muslim myrmidom minnion of Saul Alinsky, hussain obama, to come in with Socialism door already wide open.
      Chief justice John Roberts did not rule based on the law when he actually changed the wording from a penalty to a tax to salvage OBC. IANAN, but I believe Roberts does not have the right to change the law. He is to just rule on the law of the subject as presented to him/them. What the Dems wanted was to ultimately have a Single Pay Health System, with the Gov’t Bureucrats running all health care and payouts.You remember Jonathan Gruber’s confessions of the lies he told to Congress as Obama consultant testifying before Congress? NO, that is of no interest t0 you.
      Do You remember the slobbering Barney Frank screaming at GWB that Fannie and Freddie Mac did not need anymore regulations? Hell no, you already forgot that if you were ever aware of that. Well, I could write you an epistle on the facts and non -facts of the reason for the great recession, but biased and jaundiced eyes as your eyes are, would not see the proper aspects of any of that.

  14. Socialist/dictatorial systems are suboptimal, often progressive (i.e. monotonic) alternative social constructs to free enterprise/democratic dynamic systems.

  15. Some have posted that Republicans are in favor of socialist policies such as Medicare and Social Security. Republicans are in favor of a safety net. The thing that differentiates the Republicans from the Democrats is that the Republicans believe in helping those in need and the Democrats believe in supporting people from the cradle to the grave. https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/oh-julia-from-birth-to-death-left-and-right. Sometimes the Democrats let slip what they really stand for. Don’t forget, along with all the goodies comes complete compliance for the good of the collective.

    1. Like Karen, you think that posting an op ed piece that supports what you believe proves something, other than the opinion of the person who wrote it. Show me where any official Democratic platform favors supporting people from the cradle to the grave. You can’t because there is no such platform.

      1. Natacha, Julia’s support from the cradle to the grave was presented by the Obama Administration. The link I posted is from a source that would be commonly considered to be of the left. Do you think you would find a Republican talking head at The New Yorker Magazine. Here’s a segment about the life of Julia by the Obama Administration on low and behold, MSNBC. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig2KmRI-S4A . When Natacha doesn’t want to believe something she just waves her hand and it disappears. Quiet, don’t tell her that the facts for us are different than the facts for her. No need to interrupt her little fairytales

      2. Natcha: Lyndon Baines Johnson POTUS, after passing the civil and voting rights acts of 1964-1965 said; “we (Dems)nwill keep those N******s on the Plantation for the next 100 years”. Re search it, ole puseudo-savant one.

    2. Republicans recognize the benefits and deficits of both public and private smoothing functions in context. Social security and Medicare are the latter with public management. Medicaid (e.g. Obamacares) is the former.while sustaining progressive prices and availability without borders and shared/shifted responsibility.

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