Back in November 2023, Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault stood in the House of Commons to declare, “I’m a Liberal and a proud socialist.” Normally, it’s best to take statements from Liberal cabinet ministers with a grain of salt, but this time he was speaking the pure, unadulterated truth.We can believe him because he has backed up his claim to being a “proud socialist” with his policies.As Heather Exner-Pirot wrote in the December 2023 issue of Inside Policy magazine, “From an emissions cap to toxic plastic straws and from Clean Electricity Regulations to the Clean Fuel Standard, Guilbeault has been advancing economy-killing and constitution-defying laws at a frenzied pace.”His recent declaration that by 2035 all light duty vehicles sold in Canada must be electric is among his worst policies. It demonstrates his commitment to a command economy.That is, as a socialist, he believes major aspects of peoples’ lives can be changed by government fiat.This never ends well.The electric vehicle (EV) mandate will be harmful to the economy and to many individual Canadians.Consider that EVs are too expensive for most people. Those who cannot afford EVs will be unable to purchase a new vehicle from 2035 onwards.Even if they were able to obtain EVs, it’s questionable whether the electricity grid will be capable of handling them all by 2035. The EVs can’t be recharged without plentiful electricity and it’s likely the grid will be unable to supply the additional capacity needed.EVs are also notoriously unable to perform in cold weather or travel for long distances. These factors alone are a recipe for disaster for people who live in the prairie provinces.Finally, the supply chain necessary to manufacture enough EVs to fulfill the government’s dictates currently does not exist and probably won’t be sufficient by 2035.One likelihood is that Canada will end up buying many of its EVs from Communist China. But that’s probably a plus in Justin Trudeau's eyes.Years ago, economist Friedrich Hayek wrote a book called The Road to Serfdom where he explained how socialist policies lead to a loss of freedom.He pointed out that individual freedom is only possible in a free market society where private property is protected: “It is only because the control of the means of production is divided among many people acting independently that nobody has complete power over us, that we as individuals can decide what to do with ourselves." "If all the means of production were vested in a single hand, whether it be nominally that of ‘society’ as a whole or that of a dictator, whoever exercises this control has complete power over us.”Where economic decision-making is decentralized among many people, there is freedom. But where economic decision-making is concentrated in a small circle of ideological schemers, i.e., the Liberal cabinet and major initiatives are handed down by government fiat, freedom wanes.Hayek wrote this book in 1944, near the end of World War II. He witnessed the economic policies of Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and Communist Russia. Notably, all of those totalitarian regimes had one key thing in common — socialist economies.In fact, the term “Nazi” is the shortened word for National Socialist German Workers’ Party. Yes, Hitler was a socialist. He didn’t trust the free market and believed government should control the economy. He shared this view with Italian dictator Benito Mussolini and Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin.Nevertheless, at that time socialist policies were still popular among many people in the western democracies. Hayek wanted to warn people that socialist rhetoric may sound wonderful, but the reality never matches the rhetoric.The reality of the EV mandate won’t match the rhetoric either. But it will limit Canadians’ freedoms by taking away their ability to buy lower-priced and more reliable gasoline-powered vehicles.Guilbeault doesn’t want people buying and traveling in those kinds of vehicles and he has the power to impose his preferences on every Canadian. Fundamentally, that’s what socialism is really all about — the government coerces people into acting according to its ideological template.If Canadians were left to decide for themselves, most would choose gasoline vehicles. But since that would be the 'wrong' decision, socialists believe someone else needs to make the decision for them and then force them to comply.And so socialist politicians — in this case Steven Guilbeault — reduce our freedoms and take us further down the road to serfdom.