Is communism evil or merely foolish? Glenn Reynolds discusses.

I was taught in public school that communism is a laudable idea that simply doesn’t work in practice. Certainly the latter part is true, and for a long time I never really thought about the former. I think that a lack of scrutiny is the way that notion manages to survive.

Once you start thinking about it, it’s not hard to see that communism, even in its imaginary ideal form, is about slavery. The people, all of them, are enslaved to the worker’s state. (In practice, the people are enslaved to the nomenklatura, but we’re talking about the hypothetical perfect implementation here.) The moral question then is simple: is slavery evil, or can it be good under certain circumstances?

Once you ask that question, we can readily dispense with the notion that communism would be good if only it worked.

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