“The fundamental error of socialism is anthropological in nature. Socialism considers the individual person simply as an element, a molecule within the social organism, so that the good of the individual is completely subordinated to the functioning of the socio-economic mechanism. Socialism likewise maintains that the good of the individual can be realized without reference to his free choice, to the unique and exclusive responsibility which he exercises in the face of good or evil. Man is reduced to a series of social relationships, and the concept of the person as the autonomous subject of moral decisions disappears.”
— Pope John Paul II
UPDATE: Meanwhile, from Hungary, a place where, just a few years ago, Radio Free Europe once reached through the Iron Curtain.
Note that this is a collective that is working very well-that many have volunteered to participate, in order to make this dance a success.
The operative word here is volunteered.
A collective that is compelled, that forces the individual to use his or her own gifts in ways other than they might wish, is incompatible with human nature and human freedom.
A collective, or a commune, or a monastic house can only succeed when it is entered into willingly, with all members working with one heart and mind for a common purpose greater than themselves. Efforts to compel such a thing-to force a surrender that is meaningless, because it is false-have ended not in glory, but in the gulag.
Likewise, the alternate universe, wherein one is voluntarily subsumed, becoming not the lone worker bee, but the very buzz of the hive.
Professor Mondo has more thoughts.