Socialism or Capitlaism

So, I was thinking, maybe we need a better economic system, rather then socialism or capitalism because. let's face it, Capitalism will keep ruining people's lives every 30 years or so and Socialism will not drive anyone to innovate an further then what we have done already. The thing is, we need a new idea, I was thinking a mixture of both, but, looking at my own country, it ain't really working as well as it did or should. So any ideas? I look forward to reading them and questioning them!

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  • I've been advocating the idea of a careful balance between socialism and capitalism for several years now, and I hope to spread that view far and wide. Pure capitalism is too harsh and unforgiving and pure socialism can be too overprotective. We need a system that provides incentives to work hard and rewards those who do, yet, at the same time, a system that can lend a helping hand when necessary for those who are truly in need. I discuss this in much more detail on my WordPress site and on my YouTube channel.

    Guyus Seralius

    Guyus.WordPress.com
    www.YouTube.com/GuyusSeralius

  • I am a social democrat, most social democratic parties are connected with the Socialist International and espouse a gradual reformist approach to apply progressive reforms to capitalism as a means to evolve it into socialism. But people must be CLEAR about what they mean by socialism.

    Socialism in my conception is the fulfillment of democracy by combining political and economic democracy, and the end of plutocratic monopoly on wealth and resources by a small elite of owners of vast sums of capital.

    So what to we mean by capitalism? Again people need to be CLEAR on this.

    In theory, if everyone in societies were able to own a sufficient sum of capital, then technically a "social capitalism" - whereby all people would be capital owners - could be a compatible element with socialism. However capitalism's emphasis on private property rights trumping all other concerns is something that all socialists in one way or another oppose.

    Most socialists are referring to the contemporary status of capitalism - monopoly capitalism, whereby wealth and power are concentrated in the hands of monopolistic and plutocratic private corporations that are not accountable to the people who work for them, nor the societies they reside in.

    Contrary to capitalist rebukes and confusion, socialism has NEVER been about totally dismantling every single element of capitalism. Major socialist thinkers have stressed that capitalism was an advancement from feudalism, but that another advancement is needed from capitalism to socialism.

    Socialism has been confused with mass nationalization, which is a failed economic policy - and unfortunately the British social democratic government of Clement Attlee pursued mass nationalization as a quick way to move to socialism from capitalism. It fails because state enterprises are no more guaranteed to be accountable than private enterprises.

    Lastly, socialism must not be confused as eliminating private initiative nor a role for markets. Socialism should be about democratization of economic firms, allowing all economic stakeholders (all affected by economic decisions) including workers and citizens of society to make economic decisions, and that these be not limited to control by a wealthy elite. A social democratic vision of a socialist economy would be a democratic mixed economy.

    The social democratic vision of socialism is laid out in the Socialist International, that can be found here, in its Declaration of Principles: http://www.socialistinternational.org/viewArticle.cfm?ArticleID=31. Also the Socialist International's Ethical Charter can be found here: http://www.socialistinternational.org/viewArticle.cfm?ArticleID=24.

  • I should add to my previous comment, that the social democratic version of socialism as promoted by figures like Eduard Bernstein and others, has emphasized the need for evolution of capitalism into socialism. It will not happen overnight, the cultural attitudes of people need to shift first and foremost.

    Also, the Clement Attlee late 1940s vision of a quick-fix of mass nationalizations as a shift to socialism was foolhardy and failed miserably, and that policy was rejected as ridiculous by Eduard Bernstein 50 years prior, and rejected by Swedish social democrats in the 1920s and 1930s. Bernstein said mass nationalization of the means of production was ridiculous, and he was right. What Bernstein focused on was the development of co-operative enterprise, he accepted that some state enterprise was needed, and that private enterprise would exist for a long period of time - BUT that efforts should be made by people such as workers within private enterprise, to evolve it into co-operative enterprise. So the major social democratic theorist Bernstein is saying that a mixed economy is necessary for a long-time until private firms transform into co-operative firms.

    And be VERY clear, rational and sane people who advocate socialism DO NOT ADVOCATE A UTOPIA. There will still be problems in society should socialism be achieved, very serious problems - there will still be prejudice, greed, and conflict, but hopefully society will have evolved to a point where we no longer have an economic system where plutocratic elites are free to exploit and manipulate these problems.

  • I object because the conception of socialism as presented above is generalized and not understood. I have described what socialism means to social democrats whom are associated with the Socialist International. Social democrats recognize that the legacy of Marxism-Leninism that claimed to be "socialist" - didn't even come close to achieving any socialist goals, it developed bureaucratic totalitarian militarist states, Marxism-Leninism failed to deliver socialism that gave people genuine power over the economy - which is the entire purpose of socialism.

    Socialism has never been about a "free lunch" as capitalist critics have claimed it is about. The first socialist thinker Henri de Saint Simon said that people who were able to work and did work, deserved proper reward for their contribution to society. There are of course people who are disabled or not mature enough to be able to work, they deserve support by society. BUT Saint Simon DID NOT support those who were able to work but would not work of their own choice - he called these people idlers, he had no sympathy for them. Socialism as conceived of by rational theorists, is never about a free lunch, it is SPECIFICALLY about driving people to innovate by giving people proportionate rewards for their contribution. Contemporary socialist economists of social democratic views, emphasize that workers' well-being and experience in production should be considered in the economic system, that it is not under the capitalist system, as workers who earn livable wages and whose experience is appreciated by their employers who consult them for advice on how to improve production, will be more productive because their efforts are being recognized and appreciated. Socialist economic theories are even examined by capitalists today, Saint Simon's ideas on banking were utilized by capitalists, and there are other socialist ideas that capitalists have stolen as their own but without the emancipatory nature of socialism. Socialism is still relevant, it is just badly misunderstood, and the failed Marxist-Leninist attempt to form a socialist society in the Soviet Union is exemplified by capitalists as a failure of socialism, when in fact socialists like George Orwell, who wrote the book 1984, said that Marxism-Leninism was a failure and a corruption of socialism, but Orwell still supported socialism.

  • what about direct democracy communism? Direct Democracy Communism would solve the problem of the tyranny of government, because we are the government! That way we directly decide where all our tax money goes like a commonwealth trust fund we directly control with our voting power. Not my personal view but just an idea i wanna throw out, get something different in this discussion you know?

  • The only addition to this thread right now would be there are many who would not want to be a part of whatever kind of global democratic government and this aspect must be addressed. and a True Democracy is a government by the masses. this leads to mob mentality and the minority are unjustly persecuted. It has been shown the minority are right about issues many times. It just takes more time for the masses to realize it.

  • Communism. Independent, Communaly Organized, Directly Control by the People for the People.

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