… communism isn’t a form of government, it’s an economic system. is there a reason that you couldn’t have a communist democracy?
Good question! Anyone got any input on this?
you can’t really sustain a nationwide economic system without political input, so marxist-style communism, meaning land held in common and commodities produced by central planning etc etc, would require a government to run it.
that’s pretty obvious, so the real question is whether you could have a situation where >50% of people would vote for such a thing in fair elections. in the history of the soviet union, there were certainly long periods where the majority of the populace supported it- not true by the end, but after all it was formed by a popular mass uprising.
following up a revolution with a transition to continued democratic elections, while maintaining a communist form of economy, has rarely been attempted. i’m aware of only a couple of examples in latin america: salvador allende’s chile, for example, did this. however, allende was overthrown in a military coup before the experiment had run for very long
bolivia and venezuela do not have fully communist economies, but they do have far more central planning and communal ownership than most other nations, and in both cases are supported by legitimate democracies. in both cases, reports seem to indicate that the majority of people are happy to continue this, although it can’t be said to have brought magic Western-level prosperity.
(for what it’s worth: i’m an Australian who would love to see a revival of marxist economics, which can hardly be *less* fair than our current system of the rich getting richer and the poor poorer. but i can’t blame anyone for trepidation over the history of dictatorships and tyranny which have accompanied radical ideals.
i don’t think there’s any necessary causal link between communism and abandonment of the individual; the principle is that each should contribute according to their ability and be supported according to their need. it is a difficult principle to implement but i would rather we work toward that ideal than just trusting a free market’s allocation of resources, which has no reason at all to provide for those in need)