Most of us remember the late John Lennon. We also remember his best-selling single of his solo career, “Imagine”. Its lyrics are suppose to encourage the listener to imagine a world at peace, without the barriers of borders, without the divisions of religion and nationality, and to focus on a lie without material possessions.
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
You probably recognize these words, from John Lennon’s song “Imagine.”
This is considered an innocuous statement of youthful idealism, suitable for all audiences. I last heard it a few days ago, sung by a group of wholesome middle-school girls at my kids’ school. The song is encouraged by adults as a way of showing off your earnest idealism and your willingness to keep an open mind to new ideas.
But its real meaning is an indifference to suffering and a determination to close off your mind to facts that undermine your political prejudices.
Venezuela has some of the world’s largest supplies of oil, with more proven oil reserves than Saudi Arabia. But about 15 years ago, the late president Hugo Chavez set out to impose a socialist revolution, making a particular point about his great munificence in providing free health care for everyone. In pursuit of this revolution, Chavez crushed every industry outside the oil sector and brought the state-owned oil company under his control. The result has been a long spiral into poverty and oppression. Now we can see the results: socialism literally kills babies.
It began by imagining no possessions. Private property and private businesses and private profit were supposedly the source of everyone’s problems, so the Venezuelan government set out to get rid of them, with Chavez issuing a notorious set of 49 decrees in 2001 that gave him vast power over the economy. He used this power to seize private factories and expropriate foreign owners of Venezuelan firms—ensuring that no foreign investors would want to put a single dollar into the country for the foreseeable future.
A clueless 2009 article in a socialist magazine specifically hailed Chavez’s interventions in agriculture, quoting his assurance that “There is a food crisis in the world, but Venezuela is not going to fall into that crisis. You can be sure of that. Actually, we are going to help other nations who are facing this crisis.” The socialist reforms included redistribution of land, the nationalization of whole sections of the agriculture sector, the formation of socialist agricultural “cooperatives,” generous subsidies and price supports, and the creation of a vast chain of government-subsidized, government-run grocery stores.
When it all started to go wrong, the regime doubled down, blaming private retailers for “hoarding” and “speculation” and prosecuting them for waging an “economic war” against the people. Their solution was to impose price controls, which naturally made things worse, leading Venezuelans to protest by flooding the Internet with photos of empty store shelves.
The failure of this system was papered over by draining the country’s remaining oil profits, loading up on massive borrowing, and imposing a surreal system of currency controls. All of it reads like a vast experiment designed to find out what happens to an economy when you put it under the control of crazy people. But it’s actually what happens when you hand over the economy to people with a fervent belief that government decrees can change the laws of economics and coerce everyone into prosperity.
So did this brave experiment in socialism result in “no need for greed or hunger”? Did it bring about “a brotherhood of man”?
Not exactly. Turns out something entirely different took place other than what John Lennon’s song “Imagine” inspired. It’s called total destruction of society and rampant looting.
That’s right LOOTING!
So…one country, one world, one people…that whole thing that the late John Lennon was inspired to write about does not exist in the real world – under those conditions that’s socialism. Because when real people are starving under socialism, they fight and defend for themselves – like barbaric animals. The result is…
NOT exactly what John Lennon had in mind…when he wrote the lyrics to “Imagine”. So much for Venezuela and true brotherhood.
I encourage you to listen to the song and keep on imagining Hillary Clinton as president. THAT world is what OUR world will be like if we get another Democrat elected as president, like Obama, who continues to support socialism and the redistribution of wealth and other resources like Chavez in Venezuela and limit free markets.
The first line should have been the real clue. I hope some day America wakes up and realizes under socialism everything sucks, otherwise America will be joining Venezuela and John Lennon…RIP!
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