Two questions about a possible leftist-ruled America...

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From what I have seen on the Internet (such as Twitter, Youtube, and news sites), it seems that leftists are starting to take over the US.

A lot of them proposed a socialist economy as their solution to end racism, environmental problems, homophobia, US imperialism, and the like, but how their socialism works varies by different groups. Some want an economy similar to Norway, others went down to full-blown Marxism, and still others want to imitate Stalin.

This makes me want to know: what exactly might happen, if these leftists (like AOC, Bernie, or some typical leftist like those on Twitter and Tumblr) defeated Trump in the next election and took over the US government? I have two questions, out of curiosity:

1. What might immediately happen to private businesses, from someone's little shop to corporations like Hasbro — will they be given regulations like in China, would the larger ones be nationalised, or would the country become like Cuba or Yugoslavia (where all industries would be run by the government or worker councils)?

2. How would fascists, racists, and other undesirables be treated under the new leftist America — would they be isolated from the rest of society (without anyone else to hire them, or simply be disallowed from publishing their threatening views? (And how can they get their jobs back?)


(And an extra note: I am not in favour of Hitler's views, and I do not wish to threaten minorities. I am only asking these questions because of what I saw in the news, leftists boasting about a "socialist utopia" from this scenario, and rightists dreading about this as a possible repeat of the Soviet Union. After all, the former complain that the current rightist-ruled America is a dystopia where non-Whites and minorities are frequently attacked by police, racist gangsters, or people with threatening comments.

Also, I am from Malaysia, so I am not very familiar with US issues. Please, don't make this into a fight.)
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I'm just gonna say, whoever who causes a problem, whenever that happens, there be people who will try to shove it their beliefes in others and wouldn't believe in negociation, not even when things are going south.

I don't expect them to win, but if they do, in fact, whoever who wins from any spectrum, I hope people would take responsability from it.
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@Jarkes

Curiosity, and because scenarios like these would be interesting, like alternate history threads or descriptions about different societies. I just hope that America would not descend into dictatorship (like the Third Reich or the Soviet Union) regardless of what happens, because it would be much worse for the world.

It's also to at least write some backstory for several sci-fi novels that I'm writing, set centuries after our time.
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Okay, so, a lot to unpack here.

First thing is first, to preempt my response with a bit of background.

I am a leftist, Syndicalist specifically (Though there are a few different types of leftist-syndicalists). I don't make any attempt to lie about or obfuscate my positions on anything and I'm more than happy to explain and answer questions on anything in a good-faith discussion environment.

I have for several years now regularly spoken with countless other leftists online (Sometimes in some pretty obnoxiously "Woke" spaces too), as well as non-leftist but politically inclined people.

While I am only one person and I could not possibly bear the burden of accurately expressing the overwhelming multitude of disparate opinions even within the far left (You correctly mentioned that there are several factions in the left, and it is so common for us to infight it regularly becomes the butt of our humor in our communities), I will attempt here to explain in a very rough sense what some of the changes would look like in the United States, if you simply snapped your fingers and implemented policies that MOST leftists would agree with.

That being said, you did mention you were from Malaysia. I am unaware what the left looks like there, so while I attempt to explain this, please do keep in mind this is coming from the perspective of my experience speaking with leftists from mostly Europe and North America.

To begin, I want to first give a very broad idea that I think most everyone on the marxist end of the political spectrum agrees with — The idea of taking the promises of the Enlightenment, those being Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity, as well as the other ideas that came with the introduction of Liberalism as a mass political movement through the late 18th and early to mid 19th century, and seeking to fulfill them as best possible within the implementation of a political and economic societal structure.

Save for tankies (A pejorative for authoritarian leftists, mostly used by other leftists to condemn them), and a portion of well-meaning but ill-informed "SJW" types (I've only interacted with these on rare occasions despite being in many leftist communities — usually Tankies are more common), the vast majority of people I have met and interacted with want nothing more than to see societal structures of Democracy expanded, particularly into the economy.

Secondly, to expand on the "Democracy into the Economy", Most leftists you speak to will generally agree that an economy entirely based on worker-owned business, I.E. Worker Co-Operatives, is an economy that is far more just, fair, and equitable than our current system in which a small group of private owners at the top control the vast majority of societally necessary infrastructure, particularly Industry and Service. They will agree that these people on the top (Save for small business owners, we are talking about Jeff Bezos or Sam Walton here, not the guy who owns the noodle shop down the street.) have a separate social and economic interest from the overwhelming majority of people. They will agree that the reason democratic governmental systems so often fail to represent the will of their constituents is due to these people exercising their overwhelming power over societally necessary infrastructure as a means to have the government act in a way that benefits them.

To note, this is not said in a conspiratorial way, Most everyone you speak to on this end of the political spectrum will not say that there is some secret illuminati kabal of uber-wealthy capitalists pulling all the strings, rather, that individual companies with their top management, with their interests and holdings in societally critical infrastructure, are able to pull strings through PACs and Lobbying Groups, such as in the USA, or through other mediums in other countries. If you are an Oil Company for example, and you control a huge portion of a country's oil industry, you can leverage that control to have the government pass laws that benefit the Oil Industry, or even you specifically for example.

Thus, we get to our third point that the vast majority of Leftists will agree on. These lobbying groups, this undermining of the democratic process by corporate influence, this trend towards monopolisation and the vast majority of wealth flowing upward to a small point at the top of the societal pyramid, is intrinsic, that is to say, built-in to the system of Capitalism. The reasoning for this, is the very way in which Wage Labor works within our society.

In a workplace, these two seperate interests between the vast majority of people, that is, those who are not billionaires with the power to sway governments, and those who are, is evident. The class of people who own megacorporations would like to see wages set as low as possible, so they can make as much profit as possible. Workers however, would like to see wages as high as possible, so they can have as high of living standards and disposable income as possible.

This is not because Capitalists are evil, or because they are dumb, that would be a very Un-Marxist way of looking at this. (Some leftists will act as if these people are just evil sometimes and it does frustrate me.) It is, rather, a result of the way their relationship to the workplace influences their interests. People, by human nature, want to do what is best for their self interest, and keeping wages low is their self interest. The difference, is that unlike Workers, Billionaires have the societal power to make their will manifest.

If workers had the full extent of their interests, given their relationship to the workplace, made manifest, there would be no more of these billionaires because they would have full control over the Workplace, which is what Socialists of all creeds in general advocate for. Unless they are tankies, it is WORKER ownership we seek, not government ownership.

Now, why would workers, given their relationship to the workplace, have their best interest in this dichotomy fulfilled by full, democratic ownership of the workplace with no billionaires? Well, to answer this, we must first understand a basic concept. No worries, this isn't some insanely complicated Marxist theory, it's actually very simple.

When we look at the very core of how Wage Labor works, we see that workers are always paid less in wages than what they produce in profits for their employers. This is by necessity for Capitalism to function. If you don't pay workers anything for their labor, then there is no reason for them to labor (Unless we go down a really authoritarian, fucked up road of forced labor under threat of harm or death), and there is an economic stall. If Workers recieve the full amount of reward in profit for the labor they put in, the billionaire class would not exist, and we would have… Well, not necessarily Socialism here, but not really capitalism either. Workplaces would deteriorate due to lack of upkeep since all profit is going to reward peoples' labor.

So, finally, how does "The left", by which i mean most leftists, propose to solve that latter fact? Well, you have a democratic workplace structure. Everyone who works in the business is simultaneously an owner and a Laborer. In smaller businesses, you have workers amongst themselves deciding directly with meetings every so often exactly what is done with the pooled together profit from their business, such as what portions go to upkeep and maintenance, who does what role, hiring, firing, and who is paid what and how pay is decided.

In larger firms, everyone is still an Owner and a Laborer, but this time we have a scale issue. How do we manage a firm of some, say, ten thousand people? All ten thousand can't just know each other and attend meetings all at once after all! Well, this is where elected management and tiered systems come into play. In the United States, our government has used a system of County, State, and Federal tiers of government structure, and Firms could emulate different tiers where managers are elected from individual locations, those managers meet at a regional location and elect a regional manager, regional managers elect national, etc.

It would be up to individual co-operatives to decide how the specifics on these functions would work, and what works for, say, a food chain may not work for a construction contracting business. You may or may not be surprised, however, to learn that Co-Operatives do actually exist nowadays, and there is a plethora of Data regarding them. In general, they tend to have more stable employment, better pay, higher worker satisfaction, are more resistant to price shocks, and are generally more productive than their traditionally-owned counterparts. I have data on this, which I will post at the end of this post.



Now, we get to the interesting bit. What might the United States look like if we snapped our fingers and suddenly, we implemented policy positions that most leftists would agree to? I'm going to run down some bullet points here:



-Democratisation of the Economy, I.E. A partial or complete end to privately-owned business. (Some leftists disagree as to wether small business should be left be or not, personally, I believe that businesses above a certain threshold of number of employees need to be compensated and bought out to be made democratically run in order to preserve a Democratic government and ensure there is no ruling class with a separate interest to the vast majority of people.)

-A switch to renewable energy. The most feasible plan I have seen is a mass investment in Wind and Solar now to offset fossil fuels and compensate for losses as we gradually transition into shutting off old coal, gas, and oil plants, and once we have gotten our carbon load down we can start investing in advanced nuclear infrastructure.

-Investment in Infrastructure. Something to restore our crumbling roads, get rid of lead in water pipes, remove asbestos from buildings, bring better, more high speed internet to the masses and create a better network of things like Trains and Bus routes.

-An Industrial Census and Reindustrialisation. This would likely take the form of local officials who have the qualifications for it going around looking at America's former industrial districts, and looking at buildings which used to be used for production, seeing what we can move into right away, what we can salvage, and what needs to be levelled and built over. Afterwards, this Data can be used to subsidise people wishing to start up co-operative business and revitalise our industrial sector with new, high-tech production methods and pollution reduction methods.

-An end to the failed war on drugs. This would take the form of decriminalisation of drug usage, production of drugs locally in safe environments where we can make sure they are free of harmful impurities and additives, as well as providing needle exchanges and safe injection sites, with doctors on standby. We would begin treating this epidemic like a health issue and trying to get people the help they need for their problems instead of locking them away in the societal garbage bin where we can forget they exist.

-Decommodification of Healthcare. Healthcare would be provided, like it is in most countries around the world, as a system that requires little to no payment on the part of those who need treatment. This would also necessitate an abolishment of private insurance, with perhaps some sort of jobs program to help those in the insurance industry find new work in other places that their skills can be applied.

-Decommodification of Higher Education. Higher Education would be provided, like it is in some European countries, as a system that requires little to no payment on the part of those who seek it, and instead judges applicants based on their academic performance rather than their personal wealth.

-Decommodification of Housing. Housing would be provided as a system that requires little to no payment by anyone. There are a multitude of proposals for how this could be done, and this topic is very complex and hotly debated on its implementation within leftist circles. Some form of this, either partial or full, however, would likely be seen, so I felt it necessary to include.

-Decommodification of Food, Water, and Basic necessities for human life. These things would be provided in a way that requires little to no payment by anyone. Again, another thing that's very complex and debated on, but one thing I have heard of is some sort of Universal Basic Income taking the form of everyone receiving some sort of SNAP card that they can use with a certain allotment each week or so to purchase necessities that can only be used on necessities. This is only one implementation idea, and implementation could be different from this, but most leftists would agree some kind of decommodification would be implemented in this area.

-Broad Police and Criminal Justice reform. As it stands here in the USA, Police are expected to do a lot of work that could be better done by other people such as social workers, and police training is nowhere near as extensive as it needs to be, not to mention that the way in which they are trained generally trends towards conflict escalation rather than de-escalation. Prisons would not be places of punishment but of reform, and even life imprisonment sentences would be carried out without the torturous, hell-on-earth like conditions of our current penal system. As for the death sentence, I have left that out of this because opinions are so mixed depending on which leftist you talk to.

-Decriminalisation of Sex work. Most leftists agree with this. Having brothels and legal prostitution allows for far less potential for harm to be done to sex workers by people like pimps, and allows victims of human trafficking to feel safe speaking to police without fear of imprisonment.

-A massive reduction in military spending and an end to our foreign policy of endless wars of imperialism over the economic interests of those who pull strings within our government. We can cut our spending MASSIVELY and still have the largest military in the world. It allows for that budget to be spent elsewhere, and is generally a no-brainer for most people on the far-left.

-An end to the concentration camps on the border. Instead, we will process immigrants and asylum seekers from the south of the border with humane protocols, granting them their right to declare asylum and hearing their pleas as dictated by international law, which our country has agreed to abide by and is currently violating.

-One-Time Legalisation of all current illegal immigrants within our borders. This way, the can all have social security numbers, be taxed, seek better employment opportunities, and contribute to our economy without fear of deportation.

-Massive Education Reform, K-12. Our current system is really terrible if you just don't work well with it mentally, as it expects you to be a certain kind of person who functions in a certain kind of way. This is a very, very complex issue with a multitude of solutions, and this is an issue that I have not done much research on, but a multitude of opinions exist within the far left on this. Generally, however, I feel safe saying that some heavy form of education reform would be put into place to make it a better environment where more kids of all kinds can find routes to success.



These are all massive, head-spinning changes to the way America has operated for years, so… Perhaps we should take a step back and look at some other issues? Here are some things that are likely to be more of "Background" changes, things your average Joe or Jane American probably won't notice too much unless it directly applies to you:



-LGBT Rights. Any changes to these would be to ensure that people of this group have access to their specific needs such as healthcare, marriage rights, and equality par with everyone else, but this is far less of a glaring disparity than it used to be. Likely we would see an end to trans bathroom bills, an addition that businesses cannot fire or refuse to serve people for being trans, etc.

-Racial Equality. Not much on the books necessarily targets non-whites, and this is by intention. A lot of laws that disproportionally affect black people, or latinos, are done by Republican politicians who will look over Census or Other Data and see what they can write in that will disproportionally hurt people of certain groups. E.G., Gerrymandering or Voter ID laws being a couple of them. These laws would likely be redone or scrapped entirely, depending on the law.

-Sexual Equality. The right to an abortion would be made constitutional, or at the very least codified into federal law. Now, this issue in particular is a more tricky one since it's more philosophical than data-driven, the other ones for the most part can be backed up and supported epistemically with hard, empirical data, but the question of what constitutes a human life versus a speck of goo in a petri dish, or at what point something is legally considered a person, is very philosophical and messy. The overwhelming majority of leftists are Pro-Choice, but I can't really blame someone for being Pro-Life unless there's some other motivation beyond Philosophy, because this genuinely is a question with seemingly no perfect answer.

-Borders and Immigration Policy. We will still maintain borders, but immigration will be dealt with in a different way, likely more open and less difficult. As it stands, the USA is one of the most difficult countries in the world to legally immigrate to, and we would provide more legal channels for entry, work, and residence. This would provide massive benefit to our economy and expand it with an influx of new labor from many parts of the world with people seeking opportunity.



Okay, so what stays the same? Well, this is my chance to debunk some weird, but somehow common misconceptions. This comes from my experience speaking with other leftists in Europe/North America, and I can feel very comfortable saying that all of the following would be the same as before:



-Gun Rights. Now, this is a mixed bag that is more contentious among the left, but most people who have contentions with this are Non-Americans. A lot of AMERICAN Leftists are very pro second amendment, however, and I don't see a Leftist USA, run by American leftists, taking away anyone's guns.

-Freedom of Speech. Now, hold on, before you go on a tirade, let me explain this: Freedom of speech, the first amendment, is the idea that the government is not allowed to lock you up or punish you for anything you say, draw, express, or otherwise do. This is a CRITICAL Liberal/Enlightenment value that we hold in VERY high regard, and I say this having spoken to COUNTLESS other Leftists. I feel VERY confident in saying that the VAST majority of Leftists are in support of this, and that people who are not are CONSTANTLY argued with and challenged on it in leftist spaces. Now, Freedom of Speech does NOT mean that you have an inherent right to a platform, or that businesses can't have rules as to what is and is not acceptable behavior, or that websites can't have Terms of Service. For example, if you go into a restaurant covered, literally head to toe, in feces, naked, screaming and hollering as loud as you can about jews and how the end times are upon us, it is not a violation of your freedom of speech for the resturaunt workers to remove you from that establishment. Likewise, if a website has a clearly defined ToS, and kicks someone off of the platform for violating that ToS, it is not a violation of Free Speech. The internet is a very accessible place, and creating a website has never been easier. The adage, "If you don't like it, make your own", is not an unreasonable one to make when speaking of something as open and accessible as the internet.

-Your right to personal property. Nobody is coming to burst down your door with a SWAT team to take away your car or your house or your toothbrush. Absolutely nobody.

-The right to protest. See: Freedom of Speech.

-A Democratic Government structure with Regular Elections on Local, State, and Federal levels.

-Anti-Discrimination laws. Businesses are still not going to be allowed to fire people or refuse service based on attributes of a person that they cannot help.



Finally, as a fun little endnote, Hasbro (Assuming it's an American company), at the moment of the aforementioned leftist finger snap, would be made owned and controlled collectively and democratically by everyone who works there. So, for effects you might see, you would see far less executive restriction over the creative process and a lot more of designers, voice actors, and artists coming together to brainstorm and create ideas unhindered. The profit motive would no longer be the primary driving motive, simply one of many motives. So, the creative process would be empowered.

As for what this could mean if we went back in time and saw MLP from the beginning with Hasbro being a Co-Operative, I could see things taking either of two routes.

One might be a more traditional, season by season episodic format but perhaps with each episode being a bit longer, less rushed feeling.

The other, well, we could see seasons take a lot longer, but it would mean the people involved are pouring everything they can into polishing each episode and making it something truly masterful.

There are tradeoffs to each of these, but the important thing is that it would be up to the people who actually work on the show to decide how to direct it and produce it, not businessmen at the top of the company.



If you've made it this far, thanks a ton, this took me about two hours to write, and below I'm going to list sources on Worker Co-Operatives.



-Meta-analysis of 43 studies comparing various forms of worker participation in business
-Found that “profit sharing, worker ownership, and worker participation in decision making are all positively associated with productivity”. These observed correlations are stronger in worker-managed firms than in traditional capitalist firms.


-An absolutely insane meta-analysis of 102 samples representing 56,984 firms
-Finds that employee ownership of businesses has a statistically significant but small impact on business performance. “We do find that the effect of employee ownership on performance has increased in studies over time and that studies with samples from outside the USA report stronger effects than those within.”


HUGE analysis on a large quantity of data on Worker Cooperatives, UK
-Worker cooperatives are found to be larger than conventional businesses, survive as well or better than other businesses, have more stable employment, be more productive than conventional businesses, with staff working “better and smarter” and production organized more efficiently, and have workers retain a larger share of their profits than other business models.


Economic Analysis of Capitalist Firms versus Worker Cooperatives, Uruguay, 1996-2005
-Coops have a greater correspondence between profit increase and wage increase, Employment in coops is more resistant to price shocks, and Employment has a negative correlation with wages for capitalist firms and a positive correlation with wages in worker coops.


NCEO Study on Employee Stock Ownership Programs (ESOPs)
-Analyzing the effects of partial employee ownership, Data shows 33% higher income from wages at all wage levels, 53% longer median job tenure (5.2 years compared to 3.4 years), and Employee owners also have access to an array of benefits at work including flexible work schedules, retirement plans, parental leave. tuition reimbursement, and Childcare benefits (23% of employee-owners compared to 5% of non-employee-owners)
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