However, it seems to me that this scenario is not exclusive to communism. This exact same scenario will inevitably come to exist in a pure free-market system where there's no government regulations at all. It would be total anarchy, much like a post-apocalyptic scenario where one corrupt ruler would step into power. And the very reason this has not been able to happen in the USA is because the USA is NOT a pure free-market economy. USA is and has always had elements of socialism, and it is those elements that have prevented dictatorships from forming.
In fact, since the dawn of civilization, mankind has lived under some form of socialism. Libertarians and anarchists who want to abolish all government interference have a delusional idea that they are free and independent and that they are wholly responsible for their economical achievements, whilst living under a safety net which has provided them with the opportunities they have to go out and make a living for themselves. You might think you are wholly independent but in fact you almost certainly would fare poorly without some form of government to protect you.
No man is an island. We have always been social animals, and the idea that we can survive totally on our own is an idea that can only arise once we are already living under a system that has provided us with some stability and protection.
Most other developed countries are laughing at us. We seem to have a bizarre obsession with "freedom", as if only we uniquely have freedom. We have a paranoid fear that if we socialize healthcare it will take away our freedom. That is a myth. We also have this false idea that the reason why our healthcare costs more than it does in other countries is because it’s higher quality. This is also a myth. In Canada for example, a person can get the same quality healthcare they get in the USA for a fraction of the cost. Those in the USA who control the price of healthcare care only about themselves and their ability to make a profit. They can raise the cost of care to insanely high levels because they know that it being a necessity for many people they can still make a profit. This type of exploitation of people’s desperate needs to get treatment is deeply immoral.
What is currently being presented in the form of socialized democracy is nothing new. A socialized democracy is essentially what the USA is and has ALWAYS been. Our military is an exercise in socialized democracy. Without it we cannot survive. And yet, a common mindset many Americans have is that socialized democracy is evil. I think anyone who believes that is oblivious.