My perspective is more global in nature having lived and traveled in foreign countries. I can appreciate much of the European "socialistic" forms of government, but I also realize that these forms of government that blend social demands with capitalism were not born over night. They evolved from kingdoms to parliamentary forms of government today that do indeed put a high value on social issues while also recognizing that capitalism is essential for economic survival. The post World War II Europe has seen beneficail incremental change over time largely in response to the will of their people. Do they have inequality? Yes, but I would not say that they have extreme poverty, and certainly nothing of the type that you would find in other parts of the world.
In the late 1990s until the end of 2002 I lived in Venezuela and got to witness first hand Hugo Chavez's "Bolivarian Revolution" take shape. He was a charismatic populist politician who was able to motivate the masses of people to vote for him in elections. Many of his initial reforms were commendable, but as an ideologue he had little tolerance for criticism, much of it coming from the "elitists", the more affluent college educated middle class who he saw as his enemy. You can read about the changes he made over time, and be the judge yourself, but this is one view of how his Bolivarian Revolution has gone (from Wikipedia):
Since Hugo Chávez's "socialist revolution" half-dismantled its PDVSA oil giant corporation in 2002 by firing most of its 20,000-strong dissident professional human capital, and imposed stringent currency controls in 2003 in an attempt to prevent capital flight, there have been a steady decline in oil production and exports and a series of stern currency devaluations, disrupting the economy. Further yet, price controls, expropriation of numerous farmlands and all types of industries (including cattle and poultry, most of those eventually laid to waste), and other disputable government policies including a near-total freeze on any access to foreign currency at reasonable 'official' interchange rates, have caused severe shortages in Venezuela and steep price rises of all types of supplies and goods, including foodstuffs, household consumables, spare parts, tools, chemical, pharmaceutical and medical supplies, etc. forcing many manufacturers to either cut production, restrict product lines, close down, or ultimately abandon the country, as has been the case with several technology firms, including most automobile makers. In 2015, Venezuela had over 100% inflation - the highest in the world and the highest in the country's history- and in 2016, inflation was expected to reach 700%.
Part of his revolution was the complete control of the media. In 2012 despite the decline in the living standards of his people, there was a segment of the population that still revered him. Take a look at the words of his supporters in these political posters saying why they still support President Chavez after almost 14 years in power: Venezuelans Explain Why They Support the Bolivarian Revolution. Here are a few of the translations:
"I have always voted for Chavez because there is no one else like him, who doesn't fear anything, who speaks directly. Socialism is having a broad mind, full of wisdom, studying".
"We love Chavez because he is the president who has given the most power to the people. We love you."
"We vote for Chavez because he takes the needs of the people into consideration, and that's why he created the missions - as help and improvement - long live our comandante"
"I vote for Chavez because he has shown (us) socialism, and solidarity for the people of Venezuela, and Chavez is homeland”.
"I'm voting for the Bolivarian Revolution ..."for the future, for equality, and for social rights, this is why I vote for Chavez".
"Why I vote for Chavez: because he opened our eyes to the truth. I love Chavez, my leader."
"I'm voting for Hugo Chavez "so that there is social equality and our revolution continues to advance".
Okay you should go to the above link and really look at the faces of the people behind those quotes. They are good ordinary Venezuelans. Despite the fact that their economy is in the toilet, that most all the educated "elitists" have fled the country, they remain 100 percent behind their beloved man.
Does any of this sound familiar?