I’ve often wondered how socialists can possibly explain away the actual track record of socialist regimes in countries like the USSR, Cuba, and China. Now I know: they were actually capitalist countries all along!
It is widely assumed that capitalism means a free market economy. But it is possible to have capitalism without a free market. The systems that existed in the U.S.S.R and exist in China and Cuba demonstrate this. These class-divided societies are widely called ‘socialist’. A cursory glance at what in fact existed there reveals that these countries were simply ‘state capitalist’. In supposedly ‘socialist’ Russia, for example, there still existed wage slavery, commodity production, buying, selling and exchange, with production only taking place when it was viable to do so. ‘Socialist’ Russia continued to trade according to the dictates of international capital and, like every other capitalist, state, was prepared to go to war to defend its economic interests. The role of the Soviet state became simply to act as the functionary of capital in the exploitation of wage labour, setting targets for production and largely controlling what could or could not be produced. We therefore feel justified in asserting that such countries had nothing to do with socialism as we define it.
Apparently, a regime is “socialist” only if it’s an egalitarian’s utopia, and “capitalist” as long as it has any amount of inequality. Since an egalitarian society defies basic human nature, these Marxists can safely claim that “Capitalism is the social system which now exists in all countries of the world.” In fact, the basic alternative in all social systems is not between egalitarianism and inequality, but between a hierarchy based on the superior application of talent and innovation and a hierarchy based on the superior application of organized violence. By rejecting the possibility of the first, it is clear which one all varieties of socialists choose.