Marxism and socialism by any other name still smell the same

socialism capitalism Karl Marx Marxism

Marxism and socialism by any other name still smell the same

On the subjects of Marxism, socialism, and capitalism, Ronald Reagan once said, “A socialist is someone who has read Lenin and Marx. An anti-socialist is someone who understands Lenin and Marx.” In light of Marxist ideology we’re witnessing in Washington, I’m beginning to understand what he meant.

For example, in 2021, then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi tapped into her inner Karl Marx when she said that it was time to improve destroy capitalism because “it has not served our economy well.”

“In America, capitalism is our system, it is our economic system, but it has not served our economy as well as it should,” Pelosi said during an appearance at the virtually held Moderated Conversation at Chatham House. “And so, what we want to do is not depart from that, but to improve it and to make sure that it serves us.”

Words like “improve” and “reform” are Washington doublespeak used to hide the true intentions of the politician speaking them and deliberately disguise and reverse the meaning of words. In this case, when Pelosi speaks of the need to improve capitalism, what she really means is she wants to do is destroy it and replace it with something straight out of the Karl Marx playbook.

“You cannot have a system where the success of some springs from the exploitation of the workers and springs from the exploitation of the environment and the rest, and we have to correct that.” ~ Nancy Pelosi

Unlimited exploitation of cheap labour-power is the sole foundation of [the capitalists’] power to compete.” ~ Karl MarxDas Kapital (1867)

Capitalist production, therefore, only develops the techniques and the degree of combination of the social process of production by simultaneously undermining the original sources of all wealth – the soil and the worker.” ~ Karl Marx, Volume 1 of Capital (Emphasis mine)

Pelosi put some muscle behind her words when she appointed far-left Democrats to the Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Fairness in Growth — it is no longer standing — including notable Democratic Socialists and “squad” members Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Pramila Jayapal. This panel was tasked with recommending potential actions to address “wealth inequality” — another use of Washington doublespeak.

Recently, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (AOC) said that capitalism was no longer a “redeemable” system in America and that it should be replaced with Marxism to provide “a more just economy.”

“So, to me, capitalism at its core, what we’re talking about when we talk about that, is the absolute pursuit of profit at all human, environmental, and social cost. That is what we’re really discussing.

“[Capitalists] can control our labor. They can control massive markets that they dictate and can capture governments. And they can essentially have power over the many. And to me that is not a redeemable system for us to be able to participate in for the prosperity and peace for the vast majority of people.” (Emphasis mine)

Though avoiding the use of the word “Marxism,” AOC proceeded to make a few suggestions on how it would be a better system than capitalism:

“I think at the end of the day, it is about who has control over the very core assets of production and society.

“Where we can transition to and there are certain ideas where we’re talking about — for example, Elizabeth Warren has discussed workers being elected to the governing boards of companies. And also, we’re here in the Bronx. I represent a community that has the largest concentration of worker cooperatives in, you know, one of the largest concentrations in the world.

“These are alternative ways of doing business. Free markets are not the same thing as capitalism. And you can have markets where businesses and ways of producing, trading, selling goods are really controlled and not just controlled but giving more power to workers. People get a fair shake. Union jobs, unionized workplaces, all of these are different steps and levels that we’re talking about in a more just economy.” (emphasis mine)

For the uninitiated and the public school-educated Millennials and Gen Zs who have become enamored with the idea, socialism comes in many forms, but the goal is always the same — government control of property and natural resources as the means to redistribute wealth, create a utopian social order, eliminate economic classes, and provide so-called economic equality for the collective. The two primary forms are state socialism and democratic socialism.

State socialism is a system where the government fully controls the economy and takes ownership of all industry and natural resources. We’ve seen hints of this brand of socialism from Elizabeth Warren’s 2020 presidential campaign.

Democratic socialism is a system where the so-called free market is under the partial control of the government. Private businesses are required to do as the government dictates in matters of worker compensation, benefits, CEO pay, etc. We’ve seen what this looks like from Democrats like Alexandria Ocasio Cortez.

According to information taken from their website, the Democratic Socialists of America identify their Marxist agenda as follows (emphasis mine):

Democratic socialists believe that both the economy and society should be run democratically — to meet public needs, not to make profits for a few. To achieve a more just society, many structures of our government and economy must be radically transformed through greater economic and social democracy so that ordinary Americans can participate in the many decisions that affect our lives.

Democracy and socialism go hand in hand. All over the world, wherever the idea of democracy has taken root, the vision of socialism has taken root as well — everywhere but in the United States. Because of this, many false ideas about socialism have developed in the US.

Karl Marx, often referred to as the father of socialism and communism, wrote in the Communist Manifesto that there would be a day when workers would rise up to overthrow capitalism and seize the means of production. He called on “proletarians” (workers) to join together to accomplish this goal, which is where the political phrase “Workers of the world, unite!” originated. Marx looked at socialism as a lower form of communism but believed that it would serve as the bridge to communism after capitalism is destroyed.

And here’s a fun fact: Some of the Marxist beliefs held by Democratic Socialists are also held by Donald Trump. In an interview with Bloomberg Politics during his 2016 campaign, the Democrat with an “R” after his name spoke of the need to transform the Republican Party into a “workers party” in order to correct wage inequality and fix an economic system he considered unjust.

Like I said, Marxism and socialism by any other name still smells the same.


David Leach is the owner of the Strident Conservative. He holds people of every political stripe accountable for their failure to uphold conservative values, and he promotes those values instead of political parties.

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