…, “when capitalism is unproblematized, it’s easier to draw the binary of capitalism and socialism.” If Democratic socialism includes roads, vaccines, health care, and electricity, then maybe Republican capitalism involves sick people who can’t afford health care, have nowhere to drive, and are just sitting in the dark.
The answer is in the question. Socialism is an imbalance that hands the government too much power. You mindlessly phrased it in Marxist terms, “capitalism” versus “socialism,” as if the twentieth century never happened.
The problem is ignorance, ahistorical power grabs, running the whole ship aground. Those are for starters.
You use “socialism” and “democratic socialism” interchangeably. Your adherents lack intellectual rigor and trustworthiness to tackle the complex problems, thus eroding their credibility — and odds of succeeding.
Once you demonize the freedom to trade, the government becomes an unstoppable juggernaut. If the government seizes the “means of production” then the entire society is at the mercy of the government. This is some flavor of totalitarianism or creeping totalitarianism. The government cannot be entrusted with too much power, as the American founders wisely understood and planned for.
Labels matter. You just put up the Communist red flag