“Socialism is the philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy.”
Of course I intended it primarily as a satire on the Russian revolution. But I did mean it to have a wider application in so much that I meant that that kind of revolution (violent conspiratorial revolution, led by unconsciously power-hungry people) can only lead to a change of masters. I meant the moral to be that revolutions only effect a radical improvement when the masses are alert and know how to chuck out their leaders as soon as the latter have done their job. The turning-point of the story was supposed to be when the pigs kept the milk and apples for themselves (Kronstadt). If the other animals had had the sense to put their foot down then, it would have been all right. If people think I am defending the status quo, that is, I think, because they have grown pessimistic and assume that there is no alternative except dictatorship or laissez-faire/capitalism.
Animal Farm, the book that launched Orwell to fame, is a clever satire on the perversion of revolutionary aims. The plot of the book concerns the rebellion of the animals against their human oppressors and taking over the farm to be run for the benefit of animals. Gradually the pigs take over the management of the farm and make all the decisions, first publicly, but later in private. Eventually there is a power struggle between the pigs and Snowball is driven off the farm by dogs trained by Napoleon. Animals considered traitors are slaughtered and trade with other farms is re-established. The farm grows richer without making the animals richer, except for the pigs and dogs. At the end of the book when the men and pigs play cards and cheat leading to a quarrel the other animals, consumed with curiosity, look through the window: “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which”. The comparison with Stalinist Russia and the purge of Trotsky is irresistible. The book also introduced the famous and frequently quoted phrase: “All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others”.
There are similarities between liberalism and socialism because their beliefs of sharing everything equally, and key belief that everyone is equal is a shared thought. Although, communism is socialism on steroids, the ideology is very similar. The idea that everybody is equal, does seem like a very ideal thought but by doing this the results are death and the destruction and total chaos of the government and economy. An example of socialistic views within our government is Obamacare. Once you have control over people’s health care you have control of the people. Typically, the Social Democrats advocated various “rights” to be conferred by government. These often included education, healthcare, workers’ compensation, and pensions. Through its advocacy of trade unions, the concept of collective bargaining allowed the organization of working people into manageable groups, providing what appeared on the surface to be a collective voice in public policy. All of this would be managed and provided by government. However, government does not create wealth. It can only seize and distribute wealth created by its citizens through confiscatory taxation, i.e., taxes paid not in exchange for specific services, but as a pledge that needed services would be provided by government.