We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Socialism does NOT fail. The purpose of socialism is to create a communist society. Socialism does that exactly as intended.
In a democracy you have to actually get a majority of voters to vote against their self interest. How do you do that? By misrepresenting what they are actually voting for and including a large dollop of free stuff. Once you have socialism then you don't allow any more democratic voting and you enforce the laws against dissent. Voila! You are on the path to communism.
This pump has already been expertly primed on at least two generations of young adults. How? By putting the majority of them through the college education process which, I'm sure all will agree, is an environment over-represented by progressive and liberal representatives in positions of scholastic authority. We all know the message, and have read about what happens to student dissenters.
Top this off with a student loan debt system that encourages students to take on easy loans and follows this up closely with increasingly painful doses of hard cash vigorish as time passes by. Used to be, a student loan didn't incur interest until after graduation and putative gainful employment. Not so now!
Outcome? How can I get free stuff right now??? And will you let me worry about future obligations later? Much later?? And unspoken in this transaction: Can we pretend for now that Much Later is Never?
For Socialism to work there must a high level of Altruism, morals, integrity and loyalty. Each person must, by their own choice, work hard to produce to the best of their ability for the common good. They cannot be slackers or greedy. Each person must, by personal choice, take only the minimum for their needs, so as to provide the remainder to the sick, infirm, weak, and incapable. It is only thru a high personal level of altruism, loyalty to the group, humbleness, and service to humanity can Socialism work. To attempt to make socialism effective by force is to declare Socialism a failure and it becomes Communism.
Socialism under a dictatorship of the proletariat was to be the path to a communist utopia. But because utopia can never exist, and because Marxists believed that the ends justified the means, it led to horrible abuses.
You are quite correct. Socialism relies on only one-half of the evolutionary imperatives of Competition and Cooperation. Since two single cells joined together for a better competitive edge, Cooperation has been part of the evolutionary strategy. Cooperation became greater as life evolved till social animals arose without decreasing the Competitiveness. Socialism relies almost exclusively on Cooperation and ignores the acquisitive Competitiveness.