Image 01 Image 03

POLL: 38% of Americans Have Positive View of Socialism

POLL: 38% of Americans Have Positive View of Socialism

No one should have a positive view of socialism.

A Gallup poll found that 60% of Americans have a positive view of capitalism. That’s great news. Love it. Fantastic.

But it revealed something disturbing: 38% of the country has a positive view of socialism.

The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board focused on the capitalism aspect. I kind of get it since it’s the WSJ.

I wish we knew why so many people favor socialism. I’d also like to know the age groups because I’m pretty sure it’s those youngins who love that crap.

Gallup provided a tiny hint, though. The Democrats love to change the definition of a word (emphasis mine):

Recent Gallup research found that Americans, particularly Democrats, are most likely to think of socialism in terms of equality and government provision of benefits and services. When Gallup polled Americans on the meaning of socialism in 1949, the largest proportion described it in the traditional sense as government ownership of the means of economic production. Thus, the meaning of the term to Americans is evolving, but most still view it negatively.

The 1949 thought of socialism is the correct definition of it. Socialism has not changed. It’s government control of everything and not allowing people to thrive and succeed.

Going by political party, 65% of the Democrats/Democratic leaners think fondly of socialism. Not a shock there at all.

At the same time, 52% of the Democrats/Democratic leaners think positively of capitalism.

The portion about feelings toward economic and governmental terms cracked me up. 62% of the respondents have a negative view of “the federal government” and 59% have a negative view of “socialism.”

GOOD. I admit those are my trigger words.

However, 53% of them have a negative view of the term “big business.” I wonder how many of them are employed by a big business. How many of them use Amazon? Have an iPhone?

Positive views on terms: 97% on small business, 84% on free enterprise, and 60% on capitalism.


Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.


That shift took about 20 years. Exactly what the soviets said they could do.

Look at this as an opportunity.
Open up cruise ships to Havana and Venezuela. Find out who these people are and offer them free tickets, one-way. It will be infinitely cheaper to the USA in the long run. Win-win.
When they’ve had the education the American school system failed to give them, it’s a short walk back to McAllen. There are caravans departing every day.

    Peabody in reply to henrybowman. | December 9, 2021 at 12:42 pm

    You miss the point Henry. They don’t want socialism for themselves, they want it for you. They are the Elites.

    “Rules are for thee and not for me”

    “Nothing for thee and everything for me.”

      The massive egos of people in secure positions (tenured professors, government workers, rich assholes like Bezos, Gates, Hollywood idiot – to think of you and I as chickens in a henhouse they spend their lesuire time occassionally watching, stealing the eggs all the time.

      jagibbons in reply to Peabody. | December 10, 2021 at 8:22 am

      Elites love socialism and communism because they get to be the “more equal” in Orwell’s terms.

I don’t know whether to be overjoyed that the positive views of socialism are still so low, or horrified that they are so high.

btw: There is no such thing as capitalism. There is freedom and there is slavery. Those are the choices.

Tell me what happens to the country when you have five decades unrestricted immigration from 3rd world countries without telling me what happens to a country when you have five decades of unrestricted immigration from 3rd world countries.

Also, public schools.

Colonel Travis | December 9, 2021 at 11:32 am

“I wish we knew why so many people favor socialism.”

Being a dimwit has something to do with it.

    A LAZY dimwit.

    henrybowman in reply to Colonel Travis. | December 9, 2021 at 1:00 pm

    In socialism, the government runs everything. In education, the government runs teachers. What are the teachers going to teach?

    Ironically, I have personal experience of socialism being taught in a Rhode Island Catholic school. When you realize that convents are in fact functioning communes (vow of obedience, vow of poverty, funding provided by an unelected “big government” — the diocese), in retrospect, the confusion among the impressionable, parochial women is inevitable.

Then 38% of Americans have their heads up their asses. Which isn’t too hard to believe.

The Friendly Grizzly | December 9, 2021 at 11:42 am

Among all those with a favorable view, how many understand what it actually is? And how many understand the actual results?


The Marxists are no longer content with colleges & universities. They are going after high school and elementary school.

CRT is meant to groom the kids to a worldview that is anti-capitalist and anti-American.

We are losing “hearts and minds” to brainwashing.

PS – I have a kid in college. The college kids now single out those who have views that are not aligned with the Progressive cause. Everyone knows who these kids are and they smear them racist because they do not agree with the Progessive agenda (BLM, anti-police, trans etc). College has become an echo-chamber of Progressive slogans.


Socialism. Vote your way in, shoot your way out.

“ahhh. so you’re in favor of socialism?”

“so you agree that a burgeoning sector of the population who cannot or will not work should be supported via “government” largesse? what then do you expect to happen when that “largesse” is withdrawn or exhausted?”

Socialism is great until you run out of other people’s money and you find out your friends are in jail or the gulag because they spoke out about something they didn’t like. It is a fantasy world full of make believe that run contrary to human nature. That is why it always fails in the long run.

The main vice of capitalism is the uneven distribution of prosperity. The main vice of socialism is the even distribution of misery.
Winston Churchill

    alaskabob in reply to MAJack. | December 9, 2021 at 1:22 pm

    You are right..

    “The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings. The inherent virtue of Socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.’

    -Winston Churchill, House of Commons, 22 October 1945

Rush always pointed out that the Dem Party was made up of people with a chip on their shoulder and a grudge that needed payback. So far communism and its slower version, socialism, never get past the dictatorship of the proletariat… the perpetual 1%. Several times the Soviet Communist Party stripped members from the Party as it was too “inclusive”.

    txvet2 in reply to alaskabob. | December 9, 2021 at 10:08 pm

    “”never get past the dictatorship of the proletariat… the perpetual 1%.””

    Hate to disagree, but the “proletariat” by definition aren’t the elite 1%, they’re the working class, and the term classically describes communism (from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs) – exactly the opposite of socialism. The Russian “communists” weren’t ever really anything but authoritarians, just as they are today. They lied about the “communist” part to con the peasants into thinking there was a better future if only they could get rid of those filthy bourgeoisie (the middle class), who were blamed for all of the problems of society (just as they are today, although today they’re also smeared as white supremacists ).

This country is mainly capitalist, with some notable exceptions minor and major. The Bonneville Power Administration, founded in 1937 and now part of the U.S. Department of Energy, owns and operates 31 federally-built dams on the Columbia River system, and sells the electricity to private and public utilities in the West. Most of the electric utilities in Washington State, where I live are owned by local governments.

None of these entities are private. We pay 9.63 cents/kWh + $20.32/mo. for the connection. 97% of our juice comes from the BPA, whose wholesale rate is a bit more than 1/3 of the retail rate. The rest goes to our county owned and operated Public Utility District. Most people don’t know how much they pay for electricity. I am an incorrigible nerd; not only do I know that, but I read my meter every day at 2 p.m. when we’re here, and keep the numbers in a spreadsheet.

This is as pure socialist as it gets. Both BPA and our county PUD have their issues, but as someone who’s lived all over the country, I am quite satisfied by both the price and performance of these entities, BPA’s infamous “Whoops” debacle (look it up) notwithstanding. I think it’s fair to say that any attempts to privatize this structure would unite everyone out here in condemation and outrage, and would kill the political career of any politician stupid (and suicidal) enough to propose it.

This isn’t my way of endorsing socialism on a wider scale, but if there is market failure — kids, that’s a thing — there can be a place for “socialist enterprise.” Okay, go ahead and kill me now, but before you do that, feed yourself with baked goods made from the world-class flour produced and sold by North Dakota’s state-owned mill.

    CommoChief in reply to RandomCrank. | December 9, 2021 at 6:40 pm

    Rent seeking /gaining is always popular with the beneficiaries. It’s the rest of the folks who are paying the rent, which a narrow but powerful constituency enjoy and fight to preserve, that have a grievance. A legit grievance.

    Correct me if I am wrong but I believe the project up there was constructed along the same way TVA was. At the time, electric power was rare or limited in rural areas. So the Feds built dams for generation and distribution. It provided jobs for worthwhile projects during the depression. It’s ninety years past that. Why shouldn’t the feds sell these assets at a fair market price that benefits all federal taxpayers and not just those locations?

      RandomCrank in reply to CommoChief. | December 9, 2021 at 9:45 pm

      I’m a Wharton grad (1990), and when I was there I was in some “strategy” class. I was on the outs with the majority, who were “woke” before “woke.” Was cool. We had a project, and divided into groups. The prof sensed the group dynamics, and appointed me (and only me) as the shareholder.

      The others came up with their ideas, couched in the “stakeholder” jargon that made me grind my teeth. So, after they presented their case — reached without consulting me at all — I uncorked one of my favorite shaggy dog stories about the parts of the body fighting to see who’d run things. The arms and legs, the best fighters? The eyes and ears, without which the body couldn’t see or hear? The brain, the organizer? The rectum tried to speak and was laughed at by the rest.

      The rectum became offended, and closed up tight. Soon, the eyes and ears became dim, I said. The arms and legs weakened. The brain was confused. That’s how assholes shareholders came to rule the world, I said. You can throw your bullshit report in the wastebasket, and learn how things actually work. No one was amused, except the professor, who joined as I laughed my ass off.

      Me, a socialist “rent seeker?” I will forget more about that shit than you will ever know. LOL

        CommoChief in reply to RandomCrank. | December 10, 2021 at 10:09 am


        Ok you hold a credential from an excellent business school and you are not a rent seeker. Great, but the question which you didn’t answer was why shouldn’t the Feds sell off assets such as TVA and the project which benefits you and others with low electricity costs?

          RandomCrank in reply to CommoChief. | December 10, 2021 at 2:11 pm

          I don’t feel like I have enough TVA knowledge to answer you, and I refuse to make shit up. That’s why I confined myself to a few examples more familiar to me. I can say this much: there were a lot more complaints about the TVA than there were about the BPA, but the opposition to the TVA is political suicide there too.

          Utilities are a good example of a “natural monopoly,” rooftop solar panels being a trivial exception. You can deregulate generation, with mixed results (Enron, anyone?) but not tranmission or distribution. There is thus a strong argument for public ownership of electric utilities.

          There’s a long history of abuses in both the railroads and electric utilities. One way or another, both of those areas have a legacy of heavy gov’t involvement, and for good reason. Same for banking. All of those are long discussions, and no, I don’t want the gov’t to control retail banking, but there is plenty of legitimate room for the government there.

          I’m not a purist, and therefore my views are open to attack on both fronts. My basic principle is: first the market and private enterprise, with gov’t as honest broker. Gov’t ownership only in tightly constrained circumstances, usually as a last resort. Those principles fit the utility situation in the Pacific NW like a glove.

          Yes, rent-seeking is a significant risk that calls for vigilance. It applies not just to gov’t but to private oligopolies. There’s actually an equation in Econ 101. Risk-free borrowing rate (Treasurys) x business risk (various legit measurements) = fair return. Anything past that is “economic profit,” which in this context is rent seeking. That phenomenon is all over the place.

          This being the internet, the land of the short attention span, I will stop there. Trust me, I have a major appetite for these issues but am cautious on the “brain dump” front. Rest assured that you are conversing with a pragmatic capitalist. None other than Adam Smith saw a role for government. Capitalism is far from anarchism.

          CommoChief in reply to CommoChief. | December 10, 2021 at 2:49 pm


          I think we agree philosophically. I am a recovering big L libertarian absolutist who was a bond trader and later a retail stockbroker/planner before joining the Army post 9/11. That purist ideology is just as flawed as these Marxists starting around. It is certainly possible to design and implement systems that work in a public/private partnership and natural utilities are probably the best example.

          The issue, as always, is human nature. Individuals become compromised by their organization putting it’s goals and defense ahead of the authority delegated. The bureaucracy almost always seeks to expand beyond their limits to make it easier to accomplish the organizations mission.

          Same with regulatory capture which as I am sure most of know results in the regulated industry seeking to pervert the regulators to either favor their particular company or create higher barriers to entry and minimize competition.

          RandomCrank in reply to CommoChief. | December 10, 2021 at 4:34 pm

          Capitalism is impossible without government. This is where purist libertarians go wrong. I share the tendency, but it has limits. The reality is that absolutism is almost always incompatible with a functioning economy; government is part of the mix, and there is no mechanistic formula about its role.

          That’s one of the real beauties of the Constitution. It’s a framework, not a prescription, and allows for a lot of flexibility. It limits government in important respects, but that’s all. In the end, a self-governing society rests upon its people. If we have terrible leadership, it’ll be the result of our collective flaws as people.

          This is why I am usually quite skeptical of this or that “new paradigm” or “new path” or major changes in government forms. Our forms are just fine. The real issue is our quality as people. No Constitution can produce or guarantee success, or prevent failure. That’s our job, not a matter of ideology or forms.

I would focus on the fact that none of these numbers have changed in the last 11 years. These were the numbers that elected Trump.

All occurring on the GOP’s watch.
McConnell, McCarthy, Rona Romney, etc

I don’t think most of them have any clue what socialism actually means.

    geronl in reply to geronl. | December 9, 2021 at 2:26 pm

    In real terms, not in “theory”

    AnAdultInDiapers in reply to geronl. | December 10, 2021 at 3:19 am

    It’s an entirely useless label. Even in this article the author is using a definition they acknowledge the people responding to the survey don’t use.

    How about ditching the label and asking people about what they actually support. Do they support universal healthcare, do they support long prison sentences, do they support business regulation, do they support free education, do they support having strong armed forces.

    It’s an issue in America. “Of course I support socialism, I believe in gender and racial equality” is sheer ignorance. Plenty of non-socialists believe in that too, they just have a different approach towards achieving it.

    Who cares whether someone thinks socialism is good or bad. If they think white people are bad for alleged historical sins then they’re racist, whether they’re socialist or not.

Did anyone ask when that Socialism gets whittle down to Communism if they are sill game?

Mary Chastain: The 1949 thought of socialism is the correct definition of it.

Words are defined by usage, especially in a poll if you are trying to determine what people think. Note that 65% think positively of socialism, and 52% think positively of capitalism. That adds up to more than 100%. That’s because some people think positively of a *mixed* system with robust markets *and* a social safety net.

A sign of how successful capitalism is. Those 38% are the sons and daughters of wealthy, privileged, and very white parents.
An incremental rise for socialism, too. In 1934. Norman Thomas and Max Bedacht, socialist and communist, got about 10% of NY state senate election vote .

    Sternverbs in reply to EdSeventen. | December 10, 2021 at 8:34 am

    Exactly – like the ‘red diaper’ babies in the 40/50’s who were the sons and daughters of well-to-do parents, who became the leaders of the SDS and the Weatherman subversive (stupid) organizations. Read about the SDS/Weather…these aholes NEVER worked a day in their lives – they didn’t have to. Their rich parents and academia took care of them.


Given that probably 35% of Americans underwent socialist indoctrination in the modern US ” education” system that figure doesn’t surprise me at all. However, the depth of their knowledge of socialism is essentially limited to ‘free stuff’ paid for by ‘rich white people’.

As 31% of Americans fall between 15 and 30 years old I’d also observe that most have never had to meet a payroll, pay a mortgage, or pay significant income taxes. Perceptions change significantly with pay raises and tax bills.

When you have been brainwashed to think that socialism means not just a free lunch, but also free stuff with no personal responsibility , that ignores the utter failure of socialism as applied in Russia, China and elsewhere where only secret police, reeducation camps, the persecution of dissidents, Siberia ,the Gulag Archipelago ,its equivalents and a police state maintained socialism as practiced on the ground.

Note the difference in favorability between “capitalism” (60%) and “free enterprise” (85%). One of the left’s biggest propaganda coups has been to get people to use the former in place of the latter.