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Capitalism, Socialism, and Communism

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  In the interest of correct terms, I looked up all three words on dictionary.com to clear the air. Scroll down to the Cultural definition for each and you will find (as always, italics are taken directly from the site):

Capitalism An economic and political system characterized by a free market for goods and services and private control of production and consumption. (Compare socialism and communism.)

Socialism An economic system in which the production and distribution of goods are controlled substantially by the government rather than by private enterprise, and in which cooperation rather than competition guides economic activity. There are many varieties of socialism. Some socialists tolerate capitalism, as long as the government maintains the dominant influence over the economy; others insist on an abolition of private enterprise. All communists are socialists, but not all socialists are communists.

Communism An economic and social system envisioned by the nineteenth-century German scholar Karl Marx. In theory, under communism, all means of production are owned in common, rather than by individuals (see Marxism and Marxism-Leninism). In practice, a single authoritarian party controls both the political and economic systems. In the twentieth century, communism was associated with the economic and political systems of China and the Soviet Union and of the satellites of the Soviet Union. (Compare capitalism and socialism.)

  To go a bit further:

Free market The production and exchange of goods and services without interference from the government or from monopolies.

Free enterprise The freedom of private businesses to operate competitively for profit with minimal governmental regulation.

Private enterprise Business carried on for profit and not owned by the government; also, the system that discourages public ownership of business; the same as free enterprise. (See private sector.)

 

  Given what is defined by culture, capitalism is both economic and political in structure with little to no government interference.  It also means that the public as a collective does not own the entire company.  This gives everyone the freedom to buy stock and open their own business.  You can have a corner store or tutor students at night.  It does not matter what goods you produce or services you provide, as long as there is little or no government action, you are in a state of capitalism.

 

  We do not have a socialist economy.  Private enterprise has control of their production according to supply and demand.  The diamond mines have a tight grip on their output.  If they chose, they could flood the market with gem stones.  If that happened, the price and value of them would drop.  They release small controlled amounts to turn profit. 

  Also, insurance companies are willing to cut people that need coverage if that individual is costing too much.  The insurance companies do not want to pay out money, but they will cut you off if you do not pay in.  This does fall under free market.

   As far as a communist state, we are not there either.  Means of production are not owned by all of the people.  Our society is selfish in nature.  I do not see all people being able to own the means of production.  There are very few things that are completely produced here in America.  Vehicles are not completely built here anymore.  Parts for vehicles are brought in from Mexico.  This is influenced by NAFTA.

  While it may seem that a president is taking actions that are socialist or communist in nature, our system is still capitalist.  Politicians may favor socialism or communism, but most favor capitalism.  (To avoid any more issues with Wallboy not being able to read everything written, this is another warning that the followig sentences are based on some people's perceptions. If yo unotice I make a comment on both political parties here).  It seems that all Republicans are capitalist in concern for their stock holdings.  It also seems that Democrats are either socialist or communist when they give away your hard earned money to people that do not work (That was me going off of some peoples perceptions).

  I guess that we do have elements of all three in our society.  But our economy is capitalist.  I look forward to reading your comments.

joe_chemo2005 Uploaded 10/21/2009
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