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The Afterlife of Communism

Recorded on January 29, 2003

The Heritage Foundation's Van Andel Center

The fall of communism does not mark the end of the socialism. The causes of opposition to a free society of voluntary exchange---envy, resentment, political demagogy, and a catastrophic failure to understand the ethical and economic principles of markets---remain with us still, however cosmetically their bearers change appearance. Further and more significantly, there has been no historical and moral accounting of the singular and epochal communist holocaust, let alone of the errors, crimes, and deceptions of its explicit and implicit apologists.

We are surrounded by lies, by bad faith, and, disturbing the moral order, by scores of millions of unredeemed bodies. The bodies of the Nazi death camps left all fascism in rightful disrepute. Until the West understands the link between communism and socialism, and until we bury those bodies appropriately, the age of socialism remains.