Fundamental Error of Socialism – UPDATED

“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.

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Tempus_Fugit

    Yet I hear many Catholic priests advocating for socialized medicine. They mistake government intrusion and bribery for charity.

  • F

    I love the video!!! Its rockin’!!!

    Knew I could count on you to post something inspiring tonight!

    And, thanks to you, I’ve sponsored a “victim” of the post-socialist era in Russia: a young girl from the Vladivostok MIssion. I hope more of your readers will sponsor children from there. Then they’ll know the love of Christ is real.


    [For those interested, F is talking about these American sisters, who joyfully work with orphans and the underserved in Russia. -admin]

  • Mary K.

    Tempus_Fugit, what you call government intrusion is a cherished lifeline to the born disabled, etc. Charities don’t and can’t reach everyone, so government safety nets are still needed for the gaps. You probably oppose all birth control and abortions, so do you really want millions more babies with catastrophic illnesses forced into this world, then cruelly starved? Such “Christian” Darwinism is what Catholic Hitler practiced.

    [The Hitler line is out of place and rather silly, Mary, but look at your own statement: 'government safety nets are still needed for the gaps.' If the current health care bill was only addressing "the gaps" you'd find few people arguing about it. -admin]

  • Kim

    This is so awesome. Praise God! I sent this off to 7 other friends/ family.
    This really meant a lot to me because I am getting ready to go to visit my brother who is dying of cancer. A reminder that Jesus’ resurrection is our hope.
    Please pray for my brother.

  • Doc

    Stop it Mary. Hitler was a pagan who hated the Catholic Church. How is it that government “safety nets” so often turn into spider webs, trapping those who they are supposed to help?

  • Ryan Haber

    Mary K.,

    Let’s try to be careful when assuming what other people “probably” think. It’s best always to err on the side of charity, no?

    Then there’s the old blog-debate rule: first one to mention Hitler or the Nazis loses.

    I agree with you that there is some room for government intervention in what might be considered the domain of private charity. On the other hand, we must be very, very careful. It is the nature of government as such to be involuntary and coercive. I don’t say that in a negative way. Those aren’t bad things; they’re just facts. We need government to do what we cannot or will not do voluntarily and individually, but what we recognize must be done – whether it is build roads or jail baddies.

    But how much public “charity” do we want exercised by the only organization in a society whose nature is necessarily involuntary and coercive? Is genuine charity even compatible with such an organization?

    We are currently on a slippery slope from seeing the government as the safety-net (or employer, or arbiter, etc.) of last resort to seeing the government as our first recourse for every ill. Bearing in mind that government is by nature involuntary and coercive, this trend in our culture should be very, very disturbing – even if, like me, you would not abolish grocery allowances for Women with Infants or Children (WIC).

    [The Italians have a saying: the fish stinks from the head down. The latest trend in political argument, and it comes from the president and has moved down to stink up the whole fish is the straw man. Someone discusses support for "limited government," and then someone else pretends that the person means "no government at all." Someone worries about too much government intervention and someone else extrapolates that into "you'd rather be a nazi." Which is actually stupid, because Hitler was about too much, not too little, government intervention, too. I am a classical liberal, which in today's atmosphere, puts me generally on the right. My support for SOME federal programs giving a hand up and seeing to the citizenry who are down at heel and trying to raise kids does not mean that I want to see the government take over businesses that should fail, or insert itself into my life by means of planting chips into my recycling bin to make sure I'm doing my part. In America, I expect the government to protect the citizenry, fix the infrastructure (and assist in disasters to same), help those willing to work hard by getting out of their way, help those who cannot work by using some of the taxes they collect from me to assist and retrain for better employment and otherwise stay out of my business. I think most Americans stand near where I am; I am not a unique person. I am also not a Nazi. Or a commie, for that matter. I am not a totalitarianist. The function of government is not to be the be-all-and-end all of our lives. -admin]

  • Klaire

    The only reason anyone starves is not because there isn’t “enough food”, only not “enough enlighted by Christ to properly share it.”

    Catastrophic illnesses? Hmm, wonder who contributes more to the salvation of the world, the “disabled” or as Mother Theresa used to call America, the country of great poverty (referrring to spiritual poverty of course), than Calcutta.

    Hitler? Like many baptised Catholic, many become anti-catholics. Hitler was not only an anti-catholic, according to the Fr Armouth, Vatican exorcist, he was possessed by the devil.

    Good luck finding any ‘government charity’ that isn’t wraped around aboriton and “population control.”

  • Ken in Kansas

    Goose bumps! My Grandfather came from Hungary to the US in 1910 and worked to bring my grandmother and the rest of the family two years later. They left a two room, dirt floor, thatched roof house for the land of promise. And that land made good on her promises. In 1956 my mother became a translator for refugees who came to the US from the uprising. Refugees stayed at our home when I was a little kid. I wept when the Hungarians took back their country in 1989. And now hundreds of Hungarian Christians dance in Resurrection joy to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Thank you Sister Elizabeth. What a beautiful picture of the hope of the Resurrection and the life of the kingdom of God.

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  • archangel

    Mary K…

    First off Hitler was not Catholic. He may have been a deist of some sort but he was not Catholic. Demonic more likely. Even if he was “raised” Catholic from birth, he was no more a Catholic/Christian than the Jacobins.

    Second, German Government Healthcare as provided by the National Socialists led DIRECTLY to the eugenic solutions decried by the church. The German government simply could not afford, back then, to take care of all those in need so they stuck with the “strongest”. This morphed DIRECTLY into the FINAL SOLUTION. Gee earily similar to our own day. Our governments can’t afford it either. Look at Greece.

    Third, YOUR soft eugenic stance speaks more about the state of your soul than anything else. I truly suggest you choose LIFE. Your willful ignorance of what Hitler did and stood for is your own undoing but do not insult the memory of both the Jews, Catholics, mentally/physically disabled who lost their lives because of the philosophies YOU are seemingly accepting.

    I suggest you do some other reading; perhaps something about Edith Stein or Maximillian Kolbe.

  • newton

    I put the video on my Facebook page. Thank you, Woman!

  • Patrick

    Mary K.,

    Do you speak from experience when you say this?

    “Tempus_Fugit, what you call government intrusion is a cherished lifeline to the born disabled, etc. Charities don’t and can’t reach everyone, so government safety nets are still needed for the gaps.”

    I’m afraid I do speak from exactly that experience. And not only do I strongly disagree with you, I find your comment extremely offensive.

    My 14 (going on 15) year old son was born with spina bifida. Briefly, it has cost me job opportunities and has delayed many of my personal ambitions. When he was 10 years old my wife and I figured out that we had walked ourselves to the edge of financial ruin, and for the past 5 years we’ve been clawing our way back.

    It’s damned difficult, but every sacrifice we’ve made has been an example to our son and daughter. God willing, regardless of his disability, they won’t make the same mistakes we made after seeing the price we’ve paid to fix them.

    With NOT. ONE. OUNCE. of government help.

    If you’ve been paying attention for the last 16 months, there’s one clear and ancient lesson to be learned about the “government safety net.”

    “When you take the king’s gold, you play the king’s tune.”

    I have chosen not to play. And I accept every consequence that comes with that choice.

    If you want to live on your knees with full pockets, by all means play on. I’ll proudly die standing free and teach my kin the honor of doing the same. .

  • Janice

    Thanks so much for this video link. I also have forwarded it to many people.

    30 years ago this would have been unthinkable in Hungary.

    God is faithful and good.

  • joan

    SOCIALISM IS EVIL is their latest video.

  • suzyq

    Thank you for a wonderful happy video.
    God Bless.

  • Mary K.

    Wow! A lot of wrongfully accusing, misinformed people here accusing me of all kinds of crimes because my health was ruined in my childhood by Catholic theology-based medical abuse and no insurance or Catholic charity helped me with resulting medical bills or job discrimination. Rev. Kolbe stoked prejudice against Jews before his internment, and Edith Stein was turned over to the Gestapo by her sister nuns. The Catholic sanctimony here won’t win any converts.

  • J.

    I am unsure that most here fully understand what this meant to the Hungarians who danced at this square–the defeat of a dictatorial (and puppet govt) and of a communist regime–which was done by waiting out the crumbing of this all encompassing government. It crumbled from within and by heroic people such as some of those dancing. We in the US take our religious freedom so much for granted that we let comments about our own religion roll off our backs as we know it won’t be followed up with the actions of the State coming to arrest us….these people celebrate religious freedom because they really know what it’s like to be without it. It’s only been 20 years since Communism collapsed and already we forget.

  • Mary K.

    No, Doc, YOU stop it! Catholic Hitler was given a full Catholic funeral mass in spite of his alleged suicide. You are rewriting history to blame victims of modern Catholic Inquisitions and poverty-CAUSING policies. There is no perfect delivery system for creating the common good, as bad governments and bad “charities” like Ireland’s Magdalene laundries and Harlem’s Incarnation Children’s Center have proven. Getting rid of insurance company leeches and providing non-profit primary care clinics would greatly reduce health care costs.

  • Mary K.

    J., you are right. The relatively peaceful break up of the Soviet Union was simply euphoric! Communism erred also by criminalizing people’s religious choices. But as a survivor of religious abuse, my mission is to remind believers that religion should never be coerced either.

  • cathyf

    Socialism likewise maintains that the good of the individual can be realized without reference to his free choice

    Bingo — every socialist scheme gets undone when each individuals makes whatever choice looks to be the best for the individual and the people that the individual is responsible for.

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    Mary, when was Hitler given a Catholic funeral mass? Who performed it? Where was it done? My understanding is that he killed himself, and his mistress, Eva Braun, in his underground bunker, before the Russians could capture him, and no one knows what happened to his body. There was no official funeral for him, of any sort, Catholic or otherwise. If some demented cleric went ahead and performed one for him—well, that just would have been one crazed individual, not the entire Church.

    And, sadly, he was, indeed, a pagan, and had nothing but contempt for Christianity. Nazi interest in the occult, and the old Norse religion, has been well documented in such books as “The Nazis and the Occult.”

    I am sorry for the abuse you suffered in the past, but I think your anger at the Church, and Cathlics, is skewing your judgment.

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    As for making choices. . . I have a disabled relative, and I don’t like the fact that I only one choice—government assistance—for this person, and it is, to be honest, of substandard quality. Can’t fire the government, however!
    It’s like a smorsgasbord, where there’s only one thing on the menu, and you HAVE to eat it, even if it tastes terrible. I’d like to be able to pick and choose a bit more, and search for assistance that really delivers, and isn’t subject to the whim of bureaucrats.

  • JuliB

    Wow MaryK, you are so wrong about the facts of Edith Stein’s life. I know very little, but it was all very available (and completely different from your statements) via a quick google search.

    Onto St. Kolbe – I’ve read a book about him put together by someone interviewing those who knew him. Where did you come up with what you claim he did?

  • archangel

    Mary K
    You are wrong and/or seriously misinformed; which makes your willful blindness an obstacle to your own growth. Or you are specifically and intentionally spewing misinformation which makes your condition that much more disturbing.

    Either way, the eugenic position you hold is not the church’s nor will it ever be. You are free to believe, think, feel all that you say. That’s called FREE WILL. You are in error on a good portion of it, however.

    As I have oft quoted from Scripture, the Lord puts a simple choice before us. Truth and Life – Falsehood and Death. Obviously, you have made your choice.

  • archangel

    One last shot Mary and a challenge to you. You have provided strawman argumentation at its worst.

    1) Provide proof of the “Hitler Funeral Mass” even after his “alleged suicide”.

    2) You stated, “my health was ruined in my childhood by Catholic theology-based medical abuse and no insurance or Catholic charity helped me with resulting medical bills or job discrimination.” As well as, “You are rewriting history to blame victims of modern Catholic Inquisitions and poverty-CAUSING policies.”

    My question for you is… do you work for Planned Parenthood. Margaret Sanger was a Hitler sympathizer and your positions are very eugenic as were hers. The only “poverty-Causing policy” (as you would put it) as associated within the “medical field” is ABORTION. Catholic hospitals will not perform them… as well they should not. Was your life as a child because you couldn’t get an abortion within a Catholic hospital? They wouldn’t take the insurance to do so? You had to go into a “back alley”? Did Planned Parenthood save your life at tax payer expense?

    PLEASE inform us.

    You are exposed for what you are. Especially if you work for Planned Parenthood and that is an advocate for the murder of innocent life.

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    And, Mary, what is this about Hitler’s “alleged” suicide? It’s been the verdict of most historians that he killed himself in his bunker. (And, if he hadn’t, he would have been killed by the invading Russian army, which certainly wouldn’t have given him a Catholic funeral.) Are you privy to historical documents which have eluded experts for decades, and, if so, have you contacted anybody with this evidence?

  • archangel


    IMO, she’s been outed. She’s a Sangerite. Everything she posted is consistent with Margaret Sanger’s eugenic philosophy. If her back story is true, then we pray for grace to enlighten her into the truth of things. If not, then she’s just here to agitate.

    Either way, she clearly has come under the influence of Planned Parenthood (Sanger’s outfit) and accepts their precepts as her own. That is the choice she has made. Many don’t realize that Sanger was, in essence, a NAZI. Mary K’s thoughts on Hitler are essentially the tropes of a bygone legacy and not worth the bandwidth their spewed upon. Shake your sandals. The ball is in a higher court.

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    (Smacking sandals busily together!)

    Indeed, Sanger believed in eugenics, and was a dangerous and unhappy woman.

    The ball, indeed, is in a much higher court.