I don't consider myself a socialist, though many of the modern far right might disagree with this self-assessment. But I also don't consider socialism to be evil and parallel to the plan of Satan. In my first substantive post on this blog I made the point, and I stick by it, that good members of the church can be found in hundreds of nations around the world supporting many different types of governments, including many that consider themselves socialists. I can understand some of the pull socialism exerts on people and I can understand some of the critiques. I can't understand demonizing members and non-members alike that espouse it.
All of this brings me to the site called The Mormon Worker. I became aware of this socialist Mormon blog during law school and I have read it off and on since. I agree with a lot of what they have to say, and disagree a fair amount as well. For quite a while I have wanted to put a link up to it on this blog because it offers a unique perspective that some members of the church may appreciate, but I am ashamed to say that for too long I have resisted providing a link because of the loud and intimidating cries from politically conservative members of the church about how evil socialism is. I didn't agree with them, but I also didn't want to have to ever face them directly.
I was wrong, of course. We can only gain by having open and civil discourse about different forms of government and different ideas for how to improve the human experience. There is nothing in the Mormon Ethic of Civility that would prohibit or discourage members of the church from discussing and espousing socialism as a political point of view. As members of the church we should look for good ideas everywhere, including political opinions that we find foreign or, initially, antithetical to our strongly held opinions or the traditions of our immediate culture.
Along these lines, a good first look from The Mormon Worker might be three posts from them: A Cancer Has Infected the Church, Social Justice Study Guide for Glenn Beck, and Can Mormons Be Socialists? The Case of El Salvador. The point is not to get Mormons to become socialist, but that there are valid political beliefs beyond current-day American conservatism, or current-day American liberalism, or any American political party at all, and that we shouldn't be afraid to accept some of those ideas and we shouldn't allow ourselves to be intimidated into certain political beliefs. Too many Americans and members of the church are afraid to step outside of their political comfort zones because of the systematic demonization of the "other" that is taking place right now, and our ideas and solutions to problems are becoming stagnant and bogged down as a result.
So there is a link up now to The Mormon Worker and it's no big deal.