Brief comment on some ideas common among liberals and social democrats.
Those who contend that the failure of 20th century socialism and the impressive levels of standards of living in northern Europe prove capitalism is the superior system are truly ignorant to the dynamics of capitalism as a whole, integrated, world system. Capitalism can only improve the material conditions of one part of the world if it is impoverishing people elsewhere. Its robust machinery generates war and corruption, while it has the ability to swallow whole any project that intends to humanize it. Socialism is not the unrealizable dream in this picture. The true dream is the idea that someday we will be able to guide capitalism toward a more just society. We would be no more than a medieval knight trying to reason with a bloodthirsty dragon instead of slaying it.