A real live case in Democratic Socialism. It’s blood curdling . . . well, milk curdling.
While Bernie Sanders is touting Democratic Socialism, we recommend that he check out the local butter crisis in Israel. We’ll have trouble making our recommendation coherent, since we’re trying to get it out between laughs.
Seems like butter is not to be had in Israel these days, or at least not much of it. You’re lucky if you can get a shop to sell you two packages. It’s rationed and, you know, there’s got to be some for everybody.
We are not weighing in how healthy butter is, or isn’t. We are weighing in on…on…exactly what? The price control board in Israel? The rule that cows can’t be bred for milk fat? The ban on imported butter — because it’s cheaper and, you know, that wouldn’t be good for the local manufacturers? The milk quotas? The citizens who have taken this crisis into their own hands, bought butter churns and are now turning out the product in their own homes? The mothers who are sneaking the product into the country from England?
Yes, Bernie, check out the butter crisis in Israel to find out just how socialism works. It’s like this: There’s got to be butter for everyone (or no butter for anyone), because that’s equality. But just like in Animal Farm, some people are more equal than others, and those more-equal people in Israel are the people who make the butter. They have to be protected. They’re the “workers,” and there is nobody more equal than the workers. So if they can’t make their product economically viable other than by predicting how much butter will be bought, and by producing only that much butter — boom! It all explodes when the market behaves differently, when people want more butter. Which the government-controlled producers can’t produce. Because their socialist overseers told them how much to produce. And when it’s not enough, well — boom! Don’t let anybody find a solution, such as importing butter, or letting any company produce as much butter as it’s willing to risk, because, as you know Bernie, that will hurt the government-controlled workers. And we can’t have that!!
Round Two: Blame. When the socialists running the government’s dairy program fall on their face, and there’s precious little butter to be had, it’s time to bring out the big cannons. It’s the politicians’ fault for not raising the prices on butter! Or for not lowering the price on butter! And don’t talk to the producers. Oh no, it’s not their fault, because they are only puppets of the government overseers. And don’t talk to the dairy farmers, because they didn’t breed the cows to produce milk fat, because that’s what they were ordered by the government socialist orderers. And don’t talk to the Finance Ministry, because . . .
There is one breath of fresh air. The whole country used to be run this way. The whole Israeli economy was socialist. Automobiles. Bread. Electronics. Trinkets. Housing. You name it. Their price and availability were all determined by the geniuses in the socialist, Labor-run governments, who, of course, knew better, because, you know, there is no better political system than socialism. Right, Bernie?
These days, even the left Labor parties and their allies in Israel no longer advocate socialism. Although it is dead in virtually all other sectors of the Israeli economy, it is still alive and well (better put: alive and sick) in the Israeli dairy industry.
“Like in the Soviet Union of old,” begins one paragraph in the report we have on the butter crisis. No matter. Bernie will instantaneously offer some linguistic distinction under which the Israel dairy crisis would never, ever, come to pass under his version of socialism because, after all, there is Good Socialism and Bad Socialism, and Bernie knows the difference! Under Bernie, only Good Socialism.
Right. Which is why the government spokesperson for the Israeli Ministry of Agriculture recently said: “A shortage of local butter is also expected in 2020.” As in the 70 years that the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics had to get it right, and never could. Nor will you, Bernie. It’s laughable only when it is not happening to you, in your own country. But if you’re living under it, besides having to put up with the ubiquitous shortages and the ridiculously high (or low) prices, you also have to develop a strong tolerance for insanity due to the unavoidable side effect of socialism: the never ending non-explanations and incoherencies as to when the shortage will end; and the time-wasting run-arounds (never successful) to secure the product or service.
So here’s our recommendation, Bernie: Try living under the system you’re recommending before recommending it. In the end, you’ll see that your system is not laughable. It’s maddening, wasteful and ridiculously and unnecessarily expensive.
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