Politics

As U.S. Capitalist System Breaks Down, New Poll Shows 60% Of Black Americans Have Positive View Of Socialism


Driven by Black Americans, young adults’ perceptions of capitalism have deteriorated over the past two years, and it’s not just happening among Democrats. Younger Republicans increasingly see socialism, considered a pillar of the left-wing political infrastructure, in a positive light.

Today, 18-to-34 year-olds are almost evenly split between those who view capitalism positively and those who view it negatively (49 percent vs. 46 percent). That gap has shrunk 20 points from two years ago when it was 58 percent vs. 38 percent, according to a new Axios/Momentive poll.

The poll numbers are dramatic for Black Americans. Socialism is a plus for 60 percent of Black Americans, 45 percent of American women and 33 percent of non-white Republicans. Those numbers grew over the past two years from 53 percent, 41percent and 27 percent, respectively.

The Momentive online poll was conducted June 11-15 among 2,309 U.S. adults age 18 and older. Among Gen Z (ages 18-to-24), 54 percent overall have a negative view of capitalism while 42 percent have a positive view.

The pandemic caused millions of Americans, including many younger Republicans, to re-evaluate their political and economic worldview, Axios reported. “That’s likely because of two factors: a renewed focus on deep societal inequalities and the tangible upsides of unprecedented levels of government intervention.”

Capitalism is broken, wrote Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor of The Nation Magazine, in a Washington Post column. That’s because it fuels extreme inequality, undermines democracy and is destroying the environment.

Socialism is a set of political and economic theories based on the belief that everyone has an equal right to a share of a country’s wealth and that the government should own and control the main industries.

Sen. Bernie Sanders is a socialist. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, an activist and member of the Democratic Socialists of America, rose to political stardom after securing the Democratic Party nomination for the New York 14th District’s House seat and winning the primary election.

Conservatives often scoff that socialism simply “doesn’t work,” wrote Kevin Williamson, author of “Big White Ghetto: Dead Broke,” in an Aug. 7, 2018, National Review column. Conservatives need to “be honest with the fact that (young Americans) aren’t buying what we’re selling,” Williamson wrote.

A recent poll in the U.K. produced similar results to the Momentive poll.

The majority of 16-to-34-year-olds polled in a new U.K. study said they are “hostile to capitalism” and want to live under socialism because they believe it will be the best system to tackle inequality, according to a study by the right-wing think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA). 

The majority of young respondents in the U.K. study associated socialism with “workers”, “public”, “equal” and ‘fair,” The Big Issue reported. By comparison, they linked capitalism with words such as “exploitative”, “unfair” and “the rich”. Three-quarters of respondents agreed with the statement that “socialism is a good idea, but it has failed in the past because it has been badly done”. 

The U.K. study shows that “‘Millennial Socialism’ is not just a social media hype”, said Dr. Kristian Niemietz, author of the report and head of political economy at the IEA. “It was not just a passing fad … nor is it simply a replay of the student radicalism of the 1960s. This is a long-term shift in attitudes which is not going to go away.”

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