The socialist thought is now seeping into America’s consciousness proved by the
current discourse between the conservative Republicans and the liberal Democrats, with the
former accusing the latter of veering toward socialist radicalism.
What is observably missing in the current discourse is the realization by any of the
two parties that socialism is a reality waiting to be pushed as viable alternative to the greed
of capitalism that the conservatives are trying their best to shield from being transformed
into something else where that greed is at least tempered.
Socialism must be understood as an antidote to the greed that capitalism by nature
adheres to and zealously promotes. Everything that we see now from the economic, political
and even socio-cultural-religious realms move according to the dictates of capitalism’s
Capitalism’s defenders, however, may say that such greed is the one thing that is
pushing the economy to develop at a rate we are now witnessing and experiencing. True.
But its resultant negative impact on society as a whole is something that is unwanted and
should never be accepted.
Who would want poverty to become as pervasive as it is now where more than half of
the world’s wealth is in the hands of just one percent of the world’s population while the
rest of the world’s population is fighting over the rest of the world’s wealth? While many
abhor this situation, paradoxically, many, if not all, also desire to perpetuate it in the hope of
partaking in the life that the one percent is currently enjoying.
This is the logic of capitalism’s greed that turned everyone to become greedy as well
instead of working to have it dismantled. Majority, if not all, want to be in the one percent
echelon of the population given every human’s desire for wealth, power and fame.
Since last Wednesday was the start of the Lenten season, perhaps it is but right for
us who belong to the predominant Christian faith in this parts to reflect on the reality where
a handful have so much for themselves while the masses of the population could hardly
make both ends meet, if at all, in life? Is the situation reflective of the teachings of our Lord
whose passion, death and resurrection we celebrate during this season?
Lent is supposed to be telling us of the evils of greed that caused humanity’s
alienation from God and from each other and through our Lenten reflection, individually and
collectively, resolve to temper our own greed.
This is what socialism desires to achieve but from the economic and political
perspective only. What the Lenten season beckons us to do is a change of the mind by not
allowing it to become the workshop of the devil called greed.
Socialism if not anchored on that change of the mind is bound to fail. Look at what
happened to the socialist-communist countries. They reverted back to being capitalist
countries with all its attendant greed where one percent of their population just like America
control more than half of their country’s wealth.
If socialism be made a real antidote to capitalism’s greed, it should be anchored on
what the Christian faith teaches, a transformation of the mind because it is the mind that
shapes human desires for wealth, power and fame. Without that transformation of the mind,
socialism will never achieve its very reason, that of being the antidote to capitalism’s greed.