The Capitalism and Socialismthey are, in a way, opposing philosophies within economics. The central arguments of the confrontation between these two revolve around economic equality and the role of the government. Socialists believe that economic inequality is harmful to society and that it is the responsibility of the government to eliminate it. This, through the implementation of programs that help those who have the least (for example, free public education, free health services, social security for the elderly, higher taxes for the richest, etc.) On the other hand, capitalists believe that the government does not use economic resources as efficiently as private companies do. They also believe that society benefits more if the free market determines who are the “winners” and the “losers” of the economic system. What is the difference between Capitalism and Socialism?
There are countries like the United States that are bastions of capitalism, and others like some Eastern European countries that are considered excellent examples of social democracy. However, something that prevails is that regardless of the political and economic ideology of each country, almost all practice a few socialist policies or programs. What is the difference between Capitalism and Socialism?
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Extreme socialism is called communism.
|Ideas||Capitalism (or laissez-faire doctrine , from the French for “letting go”) opposes government intervention in the economy. This is because they believe that this leads to inefficiency. The free market produces the best results for society. It is not up to the government to choose the “winners” and the “losers.”||All individuals must have access to basic consumer products and public services to enable people to fulfill. Large industries are the result of a collective effort. It is for this reason that the resulting benefits should benefit society at large.|
|Philosophy||Capital (or means of production) is manipulated in such a way as to generate profits for the owners (individuals) or shareholders. There is an emphasis on individual gains and not so much on benefiting workers or society as a whole. There are no restrictions as to who owns the capital.||Each one gives according to their abilities and to whom according to their contributions. It is emphasized that profits must be shared between society or the workforce. This as a supplement to the salaries of the workers.|
|Key defenders||Richard Cantillon, Adam Smith, David Ricardo, Frédéric Bastiat, Ludwig von Mises, Fredrich A. Hayek, Murray N. Rothbard, Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman among others.||Robert Owen, Pierre Leroux, Karl Marx, Fredrick Engels, John Stuart Mill, Albert Einstein, George Bernard Shaw, Thorstein Veblen, Emma Goldman, among others.|
|Key elements||Competition for capital is what drives economic activity and creates a price system that determines the distribution of resources. These resources will often be invested again. “Produce to win”: goods and services are the product of the pursuit of profit.||Economic activity and production especially, are adjusted by the State to satisfy human needs as well as economic demands. “It is produced because it is used”, This means that only what is useful and necessary will be produced. The same applies to services.|
|Definition||It is a theory or system of social organization that revolves around the free market and privatization. Voluntary co-ownership is also an option. What is the difference between Capitalism and Socialism?||It is a theory or system of social organization based on the possession of almost all common property, with title in the name of the workers.|
|Political system||Capitalism can coexist with a wide variety of political systems, including dictatorships, democratic republics, anarchism, and direct democracies. This, however, does not mean that capitalism and democratic republics are the most recurrent “combination”.||Socialism can coexist with different political systems. Many socialists support participatory democracy, some others (the Social Democrats) are supporters of parliamentary democracy, and Marxist-Leninists support centralized democracy.|
|Social structure||Classes exist as a result of people’s relationship to capital. Some capitalists are owners (or shareholders) of the means of production. Their income is almost always reinjected into the economy. For this reason, workers depend on their wages. There is a lot of mobility between classes.||Social differences are reduced to the point of disappearing. Status comes more from political distinctions. There may be some mobility.|
|Religion||There is freedom of worship.||There is freedom of worship, but it generally promotes secularism.|
|Economic system||It drives a combined economy: based on markets and private or corporate ownership of the means of production. Goods and services are produced to create profit. These earnings are often reinjected into the economy to fuel economic growth.||The means of production are owned by public companies or cooperatives. Individuals are compensated according to the individual contribution principle. Production can be coordinated by economic planning or economic markets.|
|Free will||All individuals make their own decisions. People must make the best possible decisions as they must live with the consequences of their actions. At the same time, freedom in their actions allows consumers to boost the economy.||There are issues that are personal, such as religion, professions, marriage, etc. Education is compulsory, access to health is free and equitable. These services must be provided through a social system paid for by taxes. Decisions concerning production would be made by the state.|
|Economic coordination||It mainly depends on the markets to determine investments, production and distribution. Markets can be free, self-regulating, or combined. There may also be a certain degree of State participation in the planning of private companies.||Planned socialism depends mainly on planning itself to determine the directions of investment and production. Planning can be centralized or decentralized. On the other hand, mercantile socialism depends on the markets for the allocation of capital to all the different companies (owned by the state).|
|Private property||Private property (both in capital and in other assets) is the main form of property. Public property and that of the State are in the background. Collective property is also an option, although not a very common one.||There are two types of properties. The first is the personal (houses, clothing, etc.) that belongs to the individual. The second is the public (factories and means of production) that belong to the State but under the control of the workers.|
|About the war||War, while good for industry in general, is also highly damaging to the economy. It wastes many resources and diverts them from producing what could improve the lives of consumers as they use them for destruction.||Opinions vary, from pro-war (Charles Edward Russell, Allan L. Benson) to outright opposed (Eugene V. Debs, Norman Thomas). Socialists tend to agree with Keynesians: war is good for the economy, it stimulates production.|
|Examples||The economy of the modern world operates mostly on the principles of capitalism. The UK, the US and Hong Kong are capitalists. Singapore is an example of state capitalism.||The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), although the current classification of its economic system classifies it rather as a form of centralized socialism.|
|Discrimination||The capitalist government does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, or any other arbitrary classification. However, under state capitalism (which is not the same as free market capitalism), the government could have policies that, intentionally or not, would favor the capitalist class over the workers.||All people are considered equal, yet the laws protect those who need it from discrimination. Immigration is strictly regulated. What is the difference between Capitalism and Socialism?|
|Property structure||The means of production are private property and as such, operate for the benefit of the individual. This creates incentives for producers, who engage in economic activities seeking a profit. The owners of the companies can be individuals, cooperatives or shareholders.||The means of production are owned by society. These produce and accumulate surplus value, either for all people or for factory employees.|
|Variations||Free market capitalism (also known as laissez-faire capitalism) and state capitalism (or neo-mercantilism). What is the difference between Capitalism and Socialism?||Market socialism, communism, state socialism and social-anarchism.|
|Political movements||Classical liberalism, social liberalism, libertarianism, neo-liberalism, modern social-democracy and anarcho-capitalism.||Democratic socialism, communism, libertarian socialism, social anarchism and unionism.|
|Change’s agents||Change happens quickly. Theoretically, consumer demand is what drives production choices. The government has the power to change the rules of conduct or regulatory practices of businesses.||The workers of a socialist state are the nominal agent of change. The change in the State on the part of the workers, can be slow or fast. This depends on the change in ideology among other factors.|
|Background||The ideas of exchange, purchase and sale, have always accompanied civilization. The free market or laissez-faire capitalism came to the world during the 18th century thanks to John Locke and Adam Smith, who sought an alternative to feudalism.||In 1516 Tomas Moro wrote “Utopia”, a book about a society based on common property. In 1776, Adam Smith laid out the labor theory of value. In doing this, he set aside the theory that prices are derived from supply and demand.|
What is the difference between Capitalism and Socialism?