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Key Facts

Why Political Freedom and Prosperity Go Hand in Hand
Socialism’s Failure
Why don’t socialist countries achieve the same level of prosperity as countries that embrace free markets? Historically, one of socialism’s key differences from free-market systems has been its catastrophic failure to protect political and economic freedoms.
The North Korean Model
You need only look to the experiences of North and South Korea to see the results. After the Korean War, South Korea developed into a democracy that protected the rule of law and created a regulatory environment that encouraged innovation. North Korea succumbed to state control and socialism. The result? Today South Korea’s economy is 50 times larger than that of North Korea.
Disastrous Results
Decreased political freedom leads to disaster. From famines in Stalin’s Soviet Union to mass murders in Cambodia, history’s worst instances of human catastrophe have occurred in regimes that put the state before the individual.
A Strong Foundation
Though some socialist countries have managed to provide brief periods of prosperity, democracy’s promise of political and economic freedom remains the indispensable foundation for enduringly successful nations.