Thus, in at least one limited but essential respect, the collapse of socialist economies serves to prove that Marx was right, not that he was wrong. Marx never argued that socialism, whatever the exact form it might take, would provide the institutions and the incentives needed to generate rapid technological change. Indeed, his point was precisely that when socialism emerged in the historical sequence that he predicted, those institutions and incentives would no longer be necessary. Socialism would succeed as a form of economic organization precisely because the problem of scarcity would already have been solved by the capitalist society that preceded it.
--Nathan Rosenberg writing in Scientific American, December 1991