Sweden Is 'The Best Example Of Socialism'... Because It Isn't Socialism

Sweden Is 'The Best Example Of Socialism'... Because It Isn't Socialism

They don't use real examples of socialism, because socialism has no success story.

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According to Merriam-Webster, socialism is defined as: "Any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods."

The most important reason that Sweden is not socialist is: the government does not own the means of production. In fact, they have a freer market than the United States. Swedish historian, Johan Norberg, explains that "when it comes to free markets, when it comes to competition and when it comes to free trade, Sweden is actually more free market [than the United States]."

Norberg is the host of a documentary called "Sweden: Lessons for America?" in which he discusses why defenses of socialism based on the success of Nordic countries are unevidenced and wrong.

Norberg admits that there was a point in history where Sweden's government did resemble socialism, in the 1970s and 1980s, during which the government taxed and spent heavily. The result, he explains was "[the] economy in crisis, inflation reached 10%, and for a brief period, interest rates soared to 500%. At that point, the Swedish population just said, 'Enough, we can't do this.'" After the brief experiment, it was over. Today's Sweden is not socialist.

The reason many fierce protectors of socialism cite Sweden and other Nordic countries as their prime example is that Sweden has a larger welfare state and higher taxes than the United States. As I mentioned earlier, however, their market is freer than ours.

Sweden is a gleaming, successful country that socialists and "democratic" socialists point to as a socialist success story in order to sell it here in America. If you want to see a real example of socialism, where the government owns the means of production, Norberg says you would have to go to Cuba, Venezuela, or North Korea.

They don't use real examples of socialism, because socialism has no success story.

If socialists campaigned with the example of Venezuela, which would be truthful advertising, no one would join their cause. Today, Venezuelans wait in lines for a diminishing supply of food, experience widespread blackouts, and have an inflation rate projected to hit 10,000,000% this year. This is socialism.

It's not full of glitz, glamour and happy faces of people whose government has provided for them. The reality is astronomical tax rates, a government whose spending severely outweighs its revenue, and a decrease in quality of life for the masses.

In America, we have economic inequality, but our "poor" are better off than the majority of the world's population. According to a Forbes article, "The poor in the US are richer than around 70% of all the people extant."

It seems that proponents of socialism would rather have a society in which everyone is equally impoverished.

The other aspect that socialism lacks, but capitalism has in spades is social mobility. People have the opportunity to move from one socioeconomic class to another through the free enterprise system. In a socialist society, everyone is in the same socioeconomic class with no means of ever moving higher.

The socialist illusion is that when someone becomes wealthier, someone else becomes poorer. This is false. For example, a Forbes article discussing poverty and economic inequality states, "Roughly one billion people in China alone have been lifted out of poverty in about two generations. This has been accomplished through the introduction of more capitalism into the Chinese economic system."

While economic inequality in China has increased, poverty has decreased. The two are not associated. Regardless of the difference in wealth, they have all become wealthier.

Capitalism allows creativity to flourish, and people to produce new ideas. Those ideas can be further innovated by other people, and all of these things increase the quality of life within society. People can create their own success, and grow their wealth. This would not be possible in a socialist society.

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A Letter To Every 'Pro-Lifer' That Wants To Control What Women Do With Their Bodies

Freedom of religion means that you have the right to practice your religion. Not forcing one's religion on somebody else. However, with this anti-abortion bill, that is exactly what is happening.

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The Alabama abortion ban has been all over the news and all over social media. The controversy surrounding abortions has been all the talk recently. Namely, the 11-year-old rape victim who is forced to carry out her pregnancy full term and denied an abortion. This news is atrocious and deeply saddening. Not to mention, it is also unconstitutional. This is an open letter to all Pro-Life people.

Dear pro-life people,

I understand that you have the right to your own opinion. I respect that. But now when you are forcing your opinion upon another woman's body, listen to mine.

Freedom of religion means that you have the right to practice your religion. Not forcing one's religion on somebody else. However, with this anti-abortion bill, that is exactly what is happening. Because one religion does not believe in abortions, anti-abortion is being imposed on everyone else, regardless of what religion the person associates themselves with.

If you do not believe in abortions, THEN DON'T GET ONE. It is as simple as that. Mind your own business and leave other people alone. You are nobody to judge what somebody else needs to or should do. People who get an abortion have their own reasons. Maybe they can't financially/medically handle it, or maybe they are just not mentally ready. Regardless of the reason, a woman has a right over her own body. It is her choice what she does. It isn't an easy decision to get an abortion. It requires a lot of thinking and time.

However, if a woman decides to come to the conclusion of getting an abortion it is because she believes it is right. She knows her personal situation and considered all factors before making that decision. And unless it is you who is pregnant, you do not get to make that choice for anyone else.

You call yourself pro-life? Then what about the actual living, breathing human that is carrying this unborn fetus? Why don't you try to focus on banning the monster of a machine that actually snatches lives with one pull of a trigger and has been responsible for hundreds and thousands of deaths through school shootings and other mass shootings? Why not focus on fixing the health-care system in this country or doing something for the millions in adoption agencies or the foster care system? Focus on immigration reform. What about the young little children getting torn from their families every single day at this country's border... are they not life? Focus on climate change because if we don't look after this Earth one day there will be no more life to control.

It is funny how a gun has more protection in this country than an impregnated rape victim. The argument for not banning guns is that it won't actually stop gun violence. Well banning abortions won't actually stop abortions from occurring. It'll just force women to resort to other unsanitary and life-threatening methods. This "pro-life" stance of yours is just taking away more lives.

It is funny how one fertilized egg has more rights than a living human being. You call yourself pro-life, think about the lives of the children who the women are forced to give birth to. So many of them will not be able to have proper resources, a healthy life, a loving family because their birth mother was forced to have a child when she wasn't ready.

And the fact that rape victims are no exception is ridiculous in itself. I shouldn't need to comment on that. But even more than that, the fact that a doctor serves more time for performing an abortion than the actual rapist themselves... I am speechless.

Please explain to me how that is in any world, in any sense logical? Please do explain because I've tried hard to understand this but I can't.

Please explain how a doctor helping a rape victim get rid of the physical marker of her trauma must serve more time than the rapist that stole the life out of a living, breathing girl and left her with absolutely nothing.

How does punishing the doctor more severely than the rapist help anyone? The doctors would be there to provide a safer and more sanitary method for the girl to get rid of something that was forced upon her without her consent or desire. But now you are even taking that away from a victim of monstrous abuse who already had so much taken from her.

By being pro-choice I'm not imposing my opinion on anyone. I'm just respecting the fact that everyone has the right to their own body and their own decision. You don't want an abortion then don't get one. Let people make their own decisions with their own bodies. You don't know what you are taking away from a girl when you are forcing her to go through with something she doesn't want and can not afford. Don't take away the right of a woman to control her OWN body.

"No uterus, no opinion" — Rachel Green, from "Friends."

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I Am 9,170 Miles Away But I Still Choose To Stand In Solidarity With The People Of Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka has its own flaws and imperfections, but what I've learned is that even on our darkest days, no one can take away faith and solidarity.

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April 21, 2019. Easter Sunday.

I was devastated to wake up on Sunday morning to a series of missed calls and texts from friends asking whether my friends and family were affected by the terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka. I was shocked to read all of the news about the bombings in various churches and hotels that I'd visited on my trips to Sri Lanka. I remember wandering around the Cinnamon Grand Hotel in middle school hoping to get a glimpse of internationally famous cricket players like Lasith Malinga and Kumar Sangakkara.

Now, this hotel where I associated happy memories of staying up until 5 a.m. to watch the World Cup and running around with my brother is one of the 6 locations in Sri Lanka that was bombed on Easter.

Sri Lanka is a country that most of my peers have never heard of. It brings a smile to my face when I'm able to talk about the amazing experiences I've had on this island nation. I'm able to talk about how I almost got run over by an elephant during a safari in Yala National Park, how I took surfing lessons at Arugam Bay, and how I climbed all the way up Mount Sigiriya when I was 4 years old. All of these experiences have shown me the beauty of the people, the nature, the animals, and the culture of Sri Lanka. While there is so much to appreciate, there is also so much to acknowledge about its recent history.

In 2009, the 30-year civil war finally came to an end. I remember going to my parents' room when I was nine, and watching live streams of people in the streets celebrating that the war had finally ended. This was a war that caused the majority of my family to flee the country to avoid the violence and destruction. Now, almost ten years after the war ended, there was a coordinated attack on churches and hotels that led to the murder of over 300 innocent citizens and wounded around 500 people.

Sri Lanka isn't perfect, but it's roots and culture have made me who I am today. Even though I wasn't alive during the majority of the war, it has left a lasting impact on my family. My mom had to go by herself to Russia, without any prior Russian language experience, to avoid being in the middle of the war. She now speaks English, Russian, Tamil, and Sinhalese. I had other family members who fled to places like New Zealand, Nigeria, Canada, and Australia.

Because of the war, I have family all over the world who can speak Mandarin, Arabic, Dutch, Malay, French, Russian, and so many more languages. Being Sri Lankan has given me an international perspective on the world around me and has given me the insight to look past cultural differences. Instead of going to shopping malls with my cousins like my friends in the US do, I meander through bazaars in Singapore and Malaysia or go dune-bashing in the United Arab Emirates.

When people look at me, they never think that my last name could be Paul. Shouldn't it be something that is hard to pronounce or something much longer? My last name dates back to 1814 when missionaries from Williams College traveled all the way to villages in the Northern parts of Sri Lanka to share God's love. My great great great grandfather studied in one of the many Christian schools and his faith has been passed down from generation to generation. No matter how dark things got during the war, faith is what kept my family going.

Though Sri Lanka has faced adversity over the years, it continues to grow stronger. Through violence, hurricanes, government corruption, and internal conflicts, Sri Lanka continues to push through. Sri Lanka has its own flaws and imperfections, but what I've learned is that even on our darkest days, no one can take away faith and solidarity.

So today—9,170 miles away—I stand with the people of Sri Lanka.

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