Thor Halvoerssen, head of the Human Rights Foundation, went on the Fox Business Network show the Intelligence Report last month. Halvorssen discussed how socialism abuses human rights, especially when despotic dictators rise to power promising the ideals of socialism.
Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders brought the issue to light by claiming that he is a Democratic Socialist. Words like socialism get thrown around during this election cycle, but few people who use the term know what it actually means. Socialism is an economic a political system where workers own the means of production. Many governments have socialist policies without being fully socialist.
Sanders, like Thor Halvorssen, believes the socialist democratic countries of Northern Europe can work well. He warned Trish Regan’s viewers that socialist ideas can easily be abused by populist leaders who do not have the best interests of the people at heart. When these leaders or their governments take power, it becomes difficult to remove them.
Thor Halvorssen did not use Vladimir Putin as an example. Putin did not use the ideals of the socialism to come to power, although other twentieth century Russian leaders did so on their rise to power. Instead, he used the example of Hugo Chavez and the Venezuelan regimes that came after him. The rights of Venezuelan citizens have shrunk under these regimes, and the governments routinely imprison anyone who speaks out against the regime. Some of Thor Halvorsssen’s family members currently sit inside one of the country’s prisons for criticizing the former Venezuelan president.
The Human Rights Foundation works to raise awareness of Human Rights abuses around the globe. It also tries to correct these abuses when it can. Its founder, despite his criticism of Sanders, donated to his campaign.