"If some people had wings and others didn't, and the government wanted to enforce "fairness," soon no one would have wings. Because wings cannot be redistributed, they can only be broken. Likewise, a government edict cannot make people smarter or more capable, but it can impede the growth of those with the potential. Wouldn't it be fair if, in the name of equality, we scar the beautiful, cripple the athletes, lobotomize the scientists, blind the artists, and sever the hands of the musicians? Why not?"
Shakedown Socialism is a unique book in many ways. It is a decisive refutation of the principles of socialism and "progressivism." The author, Oleg Atbashian, draws on his personal experiences growing up in the totalitarian economic system of the old Soviet Union to show why socialism not only has not worked, but cannot work.
Atbashian's own awakening from an inculcated acceptance of the superiority of communism to an embrace of the free market is the underlying story of the book. Growing up in the Ukraine, Atbashian gradually became aware of the hypocrisy of those who ran the command economy of the Soviet Union. While proclaiming the virtues of forced "economic equality" all of the Soviet officials, the "apparatchiks" who ran the country, instinctively sought every advantage they could not just for themselves, but for their children. Reflecting on this, Atbashian recognized the fatal flaw of socialism - Every parent will seek to secure the best for their children.