"The difference between existing socialism and existing libertarianism is that existing socialism was actively opposed by the most powerful countries in the world, meaning that socialist countries were either literally or effectively at war for their entire existence. This, more than anything else, explains many of the political shortcomings of existing socialism."If you want to make the case for socialism to me, here's how you should do it: tell me that this is really a much more gradual process than early socialists had in mind, that state socialism in the twentieth century was an abomination that needs to be both practically and morally dismissed as a failure, and that we will see socialism one day and it will grow out of the social democracies which, despite their imperfections, seem to be lovely places to live.
Don't blame the tragedies of twentieth century socialism on the fact that the United States was anti-Communist (that is what he means here - what else could he possibly mean by "the most powerful countries" since he's certainly not referencing the Soviet Union). By what cockamamie logic can political brutalization justifiably follow from the fact that a lot of us aren't too keen on socialism.
"Sorry I sent you to the Gulag, Aleksandr! It's just that the U.S. is so opposed to socialism I had no choice!"
When liberal, market democracies make mistakes I think we should come out and say "that was wrong", and either accept the imperfect version of liberal market democracies we've got or decide that enough is enough. I don't go around saying "well all those socialists hated capitalism so much we just had to treat black people like second class citizens".