[ 1 ] "Why did the benign dream of Fourier and Owen, when made plausible by the rationalizations of Marx, and dynamic by the engineering genius of Lenin, turn into a nightmare? I think the reason, if you go to the depth of it, is single and very simple. It is because these men and all their tens of millions of followers, notwithstanding their bold scorn of superstition and firm determination to be realistic, had a naive and romantic conception of what a man is. Both the utopians and Karl Marx did their thinking before psychology as we know it, or anthropology, or even biology in its modern form, was born. And Lenin, as I said, did no theoretic thinking that passed beyond Karl Marx." p. 100, "Socialism and Human Nature," in Reflections on the Failure of Socialism, Max Eastman, New York, Devin-Adair Company, 1955.
Darkly, Eastman noted, "The worst enemy of human hope is not brute facts, but men of brains who will not face them."
I think this a more than apt observation. For this reason, I was led some years back to pen the poem, "I Shall Believe the Socialist."
Given that so many socialist leaders -- whether termed Communists, Marxists, Fascists, seemingly more benign Socialists, or any other party label -- have amassed to themselves and their elite supporters wealth and privilege far above the nations' ordinary citizens long ago proved to me by simple observation that "government" in all its forms becomes a road to said wealth and privilege, and that is what Eastman suggests lies at the root of the historical failures of socialism -- human nature.