How did Communism fail?


Hell, It's about time!
I’m not sure if this should go in history or politics because it could fall under either category really. Anyway why do you think communism failed?

Personally I think it collapsed due to the lack of money. The reason I say this is the Communist principle is based on socialism.

The Wikipedia definition of communism is this: “Communism is an ideology that seeks to establish a classless, stateless social organization based on common ownership of the means of production. It is usually considered a branch of the broader socialist movement that draws on the various political and intellectual movements that trace their origins back to the work of Karl Marx.” Communism is a style of Governemnt I.e. Democracy, Republic

Socialism is as follows: “Socialism refers to a broad array of doctrines or political movements that envisage a socio-economic system in which property and the distribution of wealth are subject to control by the community for the purposes of increasing social and economic equality and cooperation.” Socialism is an economic system i.e. Capitalism

The two are virtually the same definition.

The problem I believe is simple. Taking lots of money from the top richest 1 or 2% in a true communist dictatorship like in 1939 Soviet Union, will render them poor or middle class. This evaporates the source of large chunks of income for business (because they don't have it anymore, the government does) thus causing buisness to slow or shut down. This in return slows the economy to a halt due to the lack of jobs. The lack of jobs of course created by the lack of money the businesses have to pay the employees. People are jobless, poverty and social decay moves in.

Even Communist China is beginning to understand the benefits of capitalist free trade. China is awash in money from free trade with America and the rest of the world.


AKA Ass-Bandit
Personally, I believe it's due to human nature.

People in power usually want more money and power, something that can't be achieved through communism, due to the whole even distribution thing. Because of this, the people in power move away from communism to something that gives them the afformentioned money and power.


Hell, It's about time!
Personally, I believe it's due to human nature.

People in power usually want more money and power, something that can't be achieved through communism, due to the whole even distribution thing. Because of this, the people in power move away from communism to something that gives them the afformentioned money and power.

That's basically the same thing. They will either go elsewhere with their money or stay and get robbed by the government. Either way in a communist state, business fails. This leads to less work and eventually a decaying society.


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There are plenty of jobs in a communist country. The government will be quite happy to put you up in a factory or farm somewhere (keep in mind that the government controls the means of production in a communist state). You just aren't going to work hard once you get there. That's because your level of compensation doesn't depend upon your performance: if you work, you make the same as everyone else. It's a productivity nightmare. Like I said in another thread, you can provide everyone in the world with a job, but if they aren't working productively, everyone will starve.

The major failing of communist nations, though, is the single-party control. In the Soviet Union they bet the benefits of democracy against those of their economic theory, and they clearly lost that bet. It's my opinion that a nation needs to be able to quickly shift and adapt to change in order to succeed. A nation run by ideologues isn't going to adapt, as they feel that they know the one true way in which things should be done. Communism just isn't flexible enough, whereas a democratically run nation with a mixed economy can evolve*.

* Or will evolve, I should say. A communist nation can change very drastically in an incredibly short time, in theory. How things work on paper though....


Registered Member
Communism failed because it is impossible to maintain. Central economic planning resulted in a severe lack of consumer goods and widespread economic inefficiency.

Gorbachev came in and decided he was going to save communism by restructuring the entire system. The new freedoms allowed enticed Lithuania to declare independence from the USSR. Gorbachev did not pursue the standard brute-force option used in the past, and instead concentrated on his reforms and dealing with issues in the rest of the USSR. The attempted coup against him made him lose credibility, and without his strong leadership the USSR was severely weakened. Other republics declared independence and Gorbachev was unable to maintain control. In the end, Gorbachev's desire for reform led him to try and fix things in the core areas of the USSR, but once it started to break apart, the process could not be stopped. Each declaration of independence was another blow to the central government. Eventually it was entirely powerless to act.


A Darker Knight
Personally, I believe it's due to human nature.
That's the reason I use for almost everyting. :p

I read somewhere that communism could never work because people want to own things. SImple as that.


For a Free Scotland
1) Centrally-planned economies are inefficent and prone to corruption. They inherently created oligarchies and will stagnate growth. You'll notice that this system was very effective into the 50's, but then the system simply began hemorraging money, which it did up until the USSR collapsed.

2) Lack of working incentive. Your pay was equal no matter what you did, which means dangerous or difficult jobs were underpaid.

3) Brain drain. The autocracy and cultural purges leads to intellectuals being put into exile, being killed, or just leaving the country.

4) Human nature. We're competitive and self-serving. Communism can work in small communities, this has been proven. However, if it becomes impersonal people lose their drive to help others.

5) One-party systems. Communism assumes it is correct, and thus everyone would agree with them. If they allowed multiple parties, they would have to eventually compromise on communist values.


Registered Member
Pure communism and pure capitalism both fail for the same reason: Human Nature. Both assume that power will not be abused, with communism placing too much faith in the leaders and capitalism believing that the robber barons will magically get the urge to help the poor and be charitable.

BTW, socialism=/=communism. Socialism seeks to regulate the distrabution of resources in order to shorten class gaps as much as possible, while communism is the more radical wing of this ideology that seeks to eliminate all forms of class and possesion.