A Harsh Lesson In Socialism
This was emailed to me and alas, I do not know who wrote it.
An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student before, but had recently failed an entire class.
In a debate, that class had insisted that pure socialism worked and that under such a system, no one would be poor and no one would be rich. In other words, it would be a great equalizer and hence ‘a good thing’.
The main proponent of this idea in class was a student called Julia.
The professor said, “Okay, we will have an experiment in this class on Julia’s plan and see what happens. When I next set a test, all grades will be averaged and everyone will receive the same average grade. Obviously that means nobody will fail, but nobody will receive an ‘A’ either. In this experiment we will be substituting ‘earned grades’ for ‘earned dollars’.”
The class agreed to the experiment.
After the first test, the grades were averaged and everyone got a ‘B’. The students who had studied hard and would normally have received an ‘A’ were upset, but the students who had studied little were happy. They were expecting a ‘C’ or below, and got a ‘B’ instead.
Values had been confiscated from the good students and handed out free to the poor students.
As the second test rolled around, the students who studied little had studied even less (since they were being handed grades higher than they expected). The students who normally studied hard realised that there was little point as they could never get an ‘A’ under this system. They slacked off the pace and decided they wanted a free ride too. After all, if you got nothing for working for an ‘A’, and you received a decent ‘B’ for doing virtually no work, what was the point in putting in the effort? May as well take it easy.
When the results came in, the second test average was a D! No one was happy.
As the tests proceeded, the scores never increased as bickering, blame and name-calling all resulted in hard feelings and no one would study for the benefit of anyone else. They realised that working hard would not improve their own grade in the slightest, as long as everyone else was bunking off.
When the results came in for the final test, to their great surprise, they ALL FAILED and the professor told them that socialism would also ultimately fail because when the reward is great, the effort to succeed is great, but when government takes all the reward away and hands it to the lazy or unproductive, no one will try or want to succeed.
It could not be any simpler than that.
These are possibly the 5 best sentences you’ll ever read and all applicable to this experiment:
1. You cannot legislate the poor into prosperity by legislating the wealthy out of prosperity.
2. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving.
3. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else.
4. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it!
5. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that is the beginning of the end of any nation.