DEMERITS OF SOCIALISM

The critics of socialism claim to have picked numerous holes in the socialist fabric. Apart from some silly objections, which have been exploded since long-e.g., socialism would ban religion, abolish marriage and family life, and the dangling of Malthusian bogey to frighten the simple and ignorant minds-earnest efforts have been made to understand socialism . and point out some real dangers and difficulties.  (i) Bureaucracy and Red ‘Iupesm, The most important set of arguments advanced against socialism i s one against the bureaucratic running of the economic machinery. Bureaucracy is considered to be inefficient in running a business. The civil servant docs not feel the same keen self-interest as the employee of a private corporation, where his tenure is  not so secure. the civil servant knows that he will get promotion by seniority; no amount of alertness or  extra work is going to’ push him up in the graded list.His main concern is to let thing» go on somehow without
a positive breakdown. One thing that he wants  to avoid is public criticism. He will, therefore, taken bold risks and will be content with a moderate  measure of success, being merely guided by rules rules rules rules rules and precedent. Initiative and resourcefulness are at  a discount. The business policy will be timid and unenterprising.There is routine and red-tape  a  place safe for men of mediocre calibre and no room for extraordinary and dashing spirits. No first-rate work can be done by second-rate men. Bureaucracy will further  mean bossism. loss of individual liberty  gestapo etc.  Not Successful ill Business. A government department cannot claim to score success in business. where quick decisions have to be taken and bold policies are called for. The government personnel is not  such as can conquer new fields. The government can.and docs, attract able men but conditions in government
service are not congenial for the display of extraordinary ability. The reward is not considered worth the trouble. Iusufflcieut Resources, It is also urged thatgovcrument cannot raise the huge amounts of capital which me necessary for the efficient running and expanding of all industries and trades. isaliocatbn Under socialism   there will be no automatic indicator for the  economical allocation of the resources of the community among different industries . Under capitalism, there
are consumers’ preferences  which. through price mechanisms.bring about an optimum allocation of these resources. But. under socialism. it will be all groping in the dark. Some commodities will be produced in excess and wasted. whereas there may be a shortage of others resulting in unser lied demand. A  chronic mul-adjustment in demand and supply IS feared. The task of organising  of allocating every acre of land to its proper u e, of cuing every worker on the right job and of inve ling e cry rupee in the direction of maximum benefit IS too big to be performed by any single authority. (v) Loss of ‘Consumers Sovereignty, Undert alism, the consumer enjoys sovereignty. Of  sovereignty is limited by his income. exit e f monopoly. etc yet the domain is wide enough fir him to pick and choose. But, under socialism, he  this sovereignty altogether. Consumption will h. c to adjust itself to production. This loss to the con un r is a real loss. He will not be able to maximise hi tisfaction. The State will no doubt fix the prices. but II will be all arbitrary. The price fixation will be ride and will lack the resiliency of market mechanism, which is sensitive to even the slightest change in the consumers’ preferences.  Luck of Incentives, It is also feared that incentive to hard work and stim t1plus to self-improvement will disappear altogether wry,enper nal gain or self-interest is eliminated. People will not give their best. Inventive ability. enterprising spirit and the goahead attitude will languish. and creative work will become impossible. It is remarked that “a government  could print a good edition of Shakespeare’s works,but it could not get them written  Loss of Economic Freedom, There will be loss of economic freedom under socialism. A serious  charge against socialism is that. when freedom of enterprise disappears, even the free choice of occupation will go. Workers will be assigned certain jobs and they cannot change them without the consent of the planning authority, Every worker is dovetailed in the scheme, and he must remain there. This loss of freedom may be really galling.