Dr. Murray Bessette is the director of academic programs at the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation. Prior to joining VOC, he was an associate professor of government at Morehead State University, specializing in political philosophy, national security, counter terrorism and intelligence studies. Dr. Bessette holds a BA and MA in political science from University of Alberta and an MA and PhD in political science from Claremont Graduate University.
Socialist revolutionaries have claimed that overcoming the bourgeois system would usher in a new way of life where the free development of each person is a condition for the free development of all. Life in this classless society would be marked by liberty, equality and solidarity. The appeal of these universally recognized ends both captured the imagination of those who believe there must be final political solution to all human ills and justified whatever actions were deemed necessary for bringing this situation into existence. And yet, in each and every instance, politically empowered socialism has produced a system of servitude, inequality and suspicion, where the life of a dissenter is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short. Socialism’s inevitable failure makes a critical re-examination of the means appropriate to the pursuit of these ends all the more important today.
Co-sponsored with the Departments of History, Philosophy, and Political Science.