Why Socialism is better than Capitalism

July 21, 2008

Let’s be clear right off the bat that neither socialism nor capitalism are inherently good or bad. They are theoretical models that are not attainable by flawed humans. Therein lies the problem. Humans introduce a variety of other factors into the mix when we attempt to implement these models. The first and most glaring is greed. Greed has nothing to do with capitalism but as soon as humans start using capitalism that is the first thing that happens. It would no doubt happen with socialism as well but the very fact that socialism spreads the wealth is antithetical to rampant greed. Capitalism leads us to right where we are now, a society of shallow, empty consumerists that blindly obey corporations so they don’t end up homeless, starving,  panhandling and embarrassed by society for being branded as a failure and idiot. It breeds hyper-individualism because we are all competing for scarce and inequitably distributed resources. It is truly kill or be killed, dog-eat-dog economics but not because of capitalism. It’s because of us and the human tendency of some of us to exploit others for individual gain. I call it evil or perhaps more appropriately, anti-altruism.

But what is evil really? I know exactly what evil is. Too may of us think of good and evil in ways that are defined by religion and laws. For instance it is not always evil to murder someone if that person is evil. Evil  is simply doing something that harms another invididual for personal gain, tangible or intangible. If you kill an evil person then you stop that person from harming others. Therefore the gain is not only personal, although there will surely be some of that as well. Others benefit from not having to deal with an evil person infringing on their happiness to increase their own. There is something essentially good about that.

Like I said socialism attempts to spread the wealth. Some people have a problem with this because they feel that they work harder than others and are therefore entitled to more than the average person. Let’s be honest. Most rich people do not earn their money and even if they did they could never “earn” as much as they have. Once they become rich or are born rich they don’t have to work hard anymore because their money makes money for them. That’s how the economy got like it is now, from all the hedge funds, flimsy mortgaging and dollar devaluation. Aren’t we tired of competing with each other like we are all a different species? It causes us all a terrible amount of stress. Why can we not put people’s natural talents to use instead of forcing people to do things they hate so they can make enough money to support their lifestyle?

The question then becomes why do people with more money than they can ever possibly spend need to continue their possession of it? Indeed.  Bill Gates will never spend all of his money. Even his children will never spend all of it and they are still making money from what their dad is still raking in now. The right argues that capitalism encourages innovation and that socialism is evil because it squashes competition. That is complete bullshit. There hasn’t been fair, laissez-faire pun intended, competition in America for decades. All we have now are global entities that corner their markets and avoid anti-trust laws and other regulations by outsourcing. What the right wants, and increasingly the centrist left and Bluedogs, is unfair competition. Socialism may prove no better at stopping this practice but it would certainly prove no worse. There is no link between the continuity of human creativity and whether humans are disproportionately rewarded for that creativity and innovation. The right would have us believe that creativity would die unless people don’t make billions for it.

The right, and brainwashed leftists, also clamor that the USSR failed because of its communist and socialist policies but they fail to realize that there are social programs in this country and many of us wouldn’t be there is it weren’t for them. Of course the right disagrees as they think no one deserves anything for free except themselves via corporate welfare and tax cuts. But how are the right’s social networks that give them economic advantages the results of hard work? Nothing could be farther from the truth. Many deals are made on the golf course and there is no work involved there unless you count swinging the club.

The truth of the matter is that the right is projecting their own laziness onto others. They want to be able to maintain and expand their wealth with as little work as possible while others, including working class whites that support them, struggle to make ends meet. Tell a man that makes ten dollars an hour laying concrete in 100 degree weathers that he is lazy because he is not rich and he will put you under that same concrete. Income does not correlate with the mental and physical efforts exerted to produce that income. In general people are paid more to use their brains than their brawn. I disagree with that but that is another symptom of the sickness of human capitalism. When it comes down to it people are paid high salaries if their work benefits corporations and that is the crux of the issue. What benefits corporations rarely benefits humans, except for the few that don’t mind exploiting the rest of us to make more money than they could ever possibly spend in their lifetimes.

In a nutshell economic models and theories can never be evil. Only man can but capitalism lends itself to more abuse than does socialism. The USSR had totalitarianism on top ofd communism so obviously it was doomed to fail. The US has corporatism on top of capitalism and it is also doomed to fail. It’s the leaders that choose to exploit the people because they can and they have no remorse or sympathy for all of the suffering they cause because truly feel entitled to everything on this planet. Either these people must adapt and adopt their behavior or sooner or later, they will be killed and no amount of money will save them from the people’s wrath.

One comment

  1. Peace,
    I have a problem with people who say socialism cannot work but it has been working since man have walk on this planet. Outside of Europe most of the word lived in communal societies and problems that exist now like poverty were foreign to us. To me the individual society of capitalism breeds more laziness then a socialist/communist society. In school when I had to do group projects I always worked harder because I knew everyone depended on me for their grade versus when by myself i would exert little effort. YOu disagree but capitalism is bad IMO because of what it creates You cannot not have capitalism without exploitation. You have to have cheap materials to gain capital which is why the third world will always continue as long as capitalism is the main driving force of the world. There is no first world without a third world. Most people don’t even know that you would need five planets for the entire world to live like americans. But rightwingers and pro-capitalist would have you belive captialism is the only way to improve the world. Regardless of how one may fell about caipitalism or socialism there is only two ways you can exist as a society either individually or collectively. I choose collectively.
    P. S. You have very nice blog Mr. Thompson

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