Sprockets Prefer Communism

Obviously, American millennials don’t share a similar history as these East Germans, but this is one worry that I have: swinging the pendulum too far in the opposite direction. In this article, Der Spiegel discusses the causes and implications of the primarily young East German led re-emergent preference for Communism:

His verdict on the GDR is clear: “As far as I’m concerned, what we had in those days was less of a dictatorship than what we have today.” He wants to see equal wages and equal pensions for residents of the former East Germany. And when Schön starts to complain about unified Germany, his voice contains an element of self-satisfaction. People lie and cheat everywhere today, he says, and today’s injustices are simply perpetrated in a more cunning way than in the GDR, where starvation wages and slashed car tires were unheard of. Schön cannot offer any accounts of his own bad experiences in present-day Germany. “I’m better off today than I was before,” he says, “but I am not more satisfied.”

Naturally, I believe that capitalism, when done right, is the most democratic economy, but typically the bottom-up democratic version gets overwhelmed by cycles of business growth and monopolies. Thus, corrupting markets and showing protections are necessary.

As we know, Millennials are communitarians. The opposite of the more defensively individualistic Baby Boom generation. But, this is a pretty fascinating case of people, often not old enough to remember the Berlin Wall, concocting a fake history because the current system has abandoned them rather than simply fixing the system to adapt more appropriately to their needs.

Of course, if fixing the system were so easy, we would have been able to accomplish it already.


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