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I originally wrote this on Helium back in 2007, so it might have been lost forever when the site was shuttered.

It might have been, except is was apparently well enough regarded by some that they stole it and put it on their own sites! I also found citations to it on some essays written by others!

If it is that highly regarded, I will just steal it back!

The Problems With Communism

If there ever were a true utopia, communism would be the economic system. All people would be equal. Each person would contribute to their ability, and each person’s needs would be met. Excess would be shared as community wealth.

In reality, if all the wealth were split equally today, tomorrow there would be rich people and there would be poor people. If the wealth were split the next day, the rich would lose their incentive to produce.

Though the idea of economic equality seems so desirous, ultimately, if everyone were economically equal, everyone would be poor. Otherwise, it is necessary (1) to imprison/eliminate those who will not contribute, or (2) to rely upon human nature changing from living on a "conscious level" to living on a "conscience level." It is the most common flaw I find in theories that result in utopia.

Another problem with communism as an entire economic system is it must remain pure. It cannot blend with a little capitalism and a little democratic socialism. As such, repressing, eliminating, or silencing opposing concepts is necessary for the system to remain pure.

Finally, and most importantly, those who are in charge are in control of all the resources and power. It tends to corrupt them. Though it happens in all systems to some degree, in pure communist systems it is very important for those in the community to remain in the good graces of those who will wield their power against anyone deemed dissident, non-productive, or of different thought. Instead of equality, there are vast chasms seperating the few in control from the controlled masses.

As an entire economic system, communism has several serious flaws. However, each boils down to a common denominator that is the problem with communism: people are people.

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