Many Millennials have been championing the rise of socialism in American politics. With Senator Bernie Sanders leading the charge against free market economic policies, many of these young enthusiasts believe that Senator Sander’s brand of socialism is what has been missing from this country. And even though it is unclear if these Millennials actually understand exactly what socialism means, they still continue to be its most vocal supporters.
In fact, just weeks ago, a self-proclaimed Democratic socialist, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, won the Democratic primary for New York’s 14th congressional district. But given the trend of Millennials loving socialism, 28-year-old Ocasio-Cortez will certainly not be the last.
There are numerous reasons to be opposed to socialist policies being implemented within the United States, especially when we look at other nations who have met with devastating consequences as a result of socialist economic policies being implemented in their respective countries, Venezuela, for example. But among the most common critiques against socialism, there is an ever-present concern that socialism breeds laziness. When individuals are not compensated based on their hard work and productivity, there is no incentive to put forth your best effort. Though many proponents of socialism will scoff at this suggestion, Senator Sanders has proved that work ethic does, in fact, suffer in socialist societies.
During the 2016 election, The Daily Wire released an article revealing some interesting facts about the socialist darling of American politics, Senator Bernie Sanders. As it turns out, in 1971, Senator Sanders was asked to leave a socialist commune because of his refusal to pitch in and help out on the farm.
In the book, We Are as Gods, written by Kate Daloz, the author tells the story of the rise and fall of the Myrtle Hill Farm, a commune in northeast Vermont. Daloz was raised near the commune, which gave her a unique insight into life on the farm.
Fitting the stereotypical description of a 1970’s leftist “hippie” commune, Myrtle Hill Farm lovingly referred to its outhouse as, “Richard M. Nixon Memorial Hall.” Additionally, Daloz remembers seeing children marching while chanting, “Ho! Ho! Ho Chi Minh! Vietcong is going to win!”
In the summer of 1971, 30-year-old Bernie Sanders made a trip out to the commune. As a member of the socialist Liberation Union Party, the young Sanders was on the verge of becoming a rising political figure in America. As is customary in commune living, each resident and visitor is expected to contribute their “fair” share when it came to working on the farm. However, this proved to be problematic for Sanders.
Constantly engaging in what Daloz describes as, “endless political discussion,” young Sanders spent more time spouting his political beliefs than actually practicing them. One resident of the farm identified only as, “Craig,” remembers the feelings of bitterness that Sander’s behavior caused others to experience on the farm. According to the book, Craig, “resented feeling like he had to pull others out of Bernie’s orbit if any work was going to get accomplished that day.”
However, Craig was not alone in his feelings toward Sanders. The farm had a policy that allowed each visitor to stay for at least three days. Though many were allowed to stay longer, Bernie Sanders was politely asked to “move on” after his three days came to an end.
Since Senator Sanders is currently leading the socialist movement within the United States, this speaks volumes about the movement as a whole. This revelation also doesn’t do much to calm the fears of many Americans who fear that socialism will lead to a decreased work ethic due to a lack of incentives.