Why is it that most millennials today have a more favorable view of socialism than capitalism? A large part of it has to do with the fact that their impression of what capitalism and socialism are couldn’t be more skewed.
Those growing up in the 1980s had socialism associated with the tyranny of the Soviet Union, and capitalism associated with freedom, but what of those today? Those in my generation grew up under the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression – and erroneously believe that the crisis was somehow the fault of capitalism. With that in mind, it’s no surprise that getting a job seems to be enough of a wakeup call for most recent college grads, who start to warm up to capitalism once they receive their first paycheck and wonder to themselves “who the hell is FICA?”
As for convincing those who are still living in their Utopian college world, what better way to illustrate the pitfalls of socialism than by something all students have to suffer through?
Every student has been part of a group project at one point in their lives that’s included the one group member who simply doesn’t carry his weight. In socialist economics, that kind of freeloading is incentivizing. After all, if everyone will be equal economically in the end, what’s the point in putting in any effort?
Ask college students who are in favor of redistributing wealth of they’d instead be in favor of redistributing GPAs, and you can watch the gears in their heads begin to grind a bit…
Of course, leave it to a professor to be the one who just doesn’t get it.[Note: This post was written by Matt Palumbo. He is a co-author of the new book A Paradoxical Alliance: Islam and the Left, and can be found on Twitter @MattPalumbo12]