May 2, 2007 at 1:30 pm (politics/law/economy)

Have your say.



  1. baldron said,

    Communism works only on small scale and absolute. Communism will never work when it has to compete with Capitalism, how ever China is doing rather well being the USA’s major provider.

    To answer your question, I would much rather have Communism to Capitalism, so long as there is a way to keep what ever government that is in charge in check from taking all of the wealth for them selves.

  2. the boss said,

    Stop confusing communism with socialism.

  3. red dragon said,

    China is doing well, yet they are moving toward capitalism. (So they say. I’m not so optimistic. I think they have a long way to go.) Most Chinese can’t read and don’t have a phone. They are not competitive, unless you go by sheer numbers. These illiterate masses are not exactly a shining beacon for how to run a government, or an economy. This, fortunately, is not the case for China. There are very few who actually have any power to affect change within China’s government OR economy.

    When socialism “works,” it is by its definition cannot be small scale as preferably everyone shares in the means of production and participates. However, with communism, the power of the government, including the economy is in the hands of a few–preferably a party minister.

    With Lenin’s own cabinet, the term “communist” was coined, and they decided to implement far-reaching legislation to transform the USSR into a haven of enlightened and compassionate comrades. They decided to do this, but got sidetracked on the way to murdering millions of their own people and destroying the national identity and culture of almost every country in the region.

    Public Education in the United States is an example of Marxist theory into practice. Now, on the one hand, we’re educating the masses, regardless of gender, persuasion, class or income. On the other, we have had to take enormous slices of learning out of the classroom to accomodate everyone (and prove that we’re doing what we say with the taxpayers’ money using vehicles like the state exams and other measures). There is, at its core, a concern of economics over, and rather than, efficacy. We are, quite plainly teaching to the lowest percentiles while our best and brightest go on, not ever knowing what they are missing. This does not, in my mind, make public education equitable.

    In most examples I can think of, the epic figures of communism of the modern world have blown smoke up everyone’s behinds about putting the power of the economy in the people’s hands and have yet to make that transpire. In fact, most have been military dictators with no economics background, who’ve failed miserably, and who have only held on to power through brutalization of their own people and tyrannical methods like information-and-history-laundering. Marx himself would be appaled. He once wrote, “Democracy is the door to socialism.” Socialism, and Capitalism, he believed would eventually balance each other out. Communism is the big scary in my book, since the people would have virtually no power to tell the government to keep away; and likewise, the government would have all the power to tell individuals what to do and where to do it.

    So, when you talk about the rights of a few to control the resources, you are talking about Communism. When you speak of altering the way goods and services are delivered to a population (education, health care, etc.) you are talking about socialism.

    Your original question was, “Does it make sense…”? I would say it is a loaded question. Of course, anyone can see that the distribution of wealth in the world is grossly disparate. But that doesn’t mean that assigning the task of redistributing wealth to any bureaucracy is a wise thing to do.

    I don’t have the answer, but it seems to me, Baldron, that after all this talk on this subject, for an idea that generates from the desire to serve MORE people–to REDISTRIBUTE wealth–to give power TO the people rather than take it away, your final solution (no pun, really) is to ship the nay-sayers off to Africa. Seems perfectly contrary to what you started out theorizing, just like it was with Lenin, Castro, Chairman Mao, and Che Guevara.

  4. baldron said,

    Let me see if I have it right, Communism is a form of economics, where Socialism is a form of Government right?

  5. the boss said,

    Actually, it’s the other way around.

  6. stephane sednaoui said,

    Huh. Both communism and socialism are alternate names for a very broad political tradition. Socialism as a term was used before Marx (as was communism , but not often or in the same context) and thus although the words are used synonymously by communist parties, it is possible to be a socialist without a Marxist. Communists are generally Marxists, while Socialists are of many types, and may have very little to do with Marx at all.

    Really Baldron was closer in some ways, as in France and other countries they have small farming communities called communes that share profits and shares in property etc. but have nothing really to do with socialism on a large scale. Communism is just the belief that property should be held communally (an economic belief), while socialism is harder to define.

    I suppose it must be hard to understand the complexities of socialist though in the U.S. given that it never really caught on there. The central point that must be stressed is that socialism doesn’t have to be extreme at all, Tony Blair’s party, Labour, in the U.K. currently is at least nominally socialist, although these days you wouldn’t find them admitting it that often. In the U.S. you have ‘liberalism’ (which has bugger all resemblance to what we call liberalism) and conservatism, which is much the same as what we have. Your ‘liberalism’ is basically an extremely mild socialism (if that) in economics mixed with social liberalism. The ‘conservatives’ in your country as well as mine combine social conservatism (less in mine than yours) with economic liberalism.

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