For the record, Socialism is not its own form of government. Communism and Solcialism aren't the same thing.
Whether or not it's a good thing, you can be both socialist and democratic.
@I Are Lebo, auto correct on iPhone really doesn't like the word Socialism.
@I Are Lebo, I wish more people were like you.
@Barry Dylan, a socialist democrat is actually a communist. Look it up.
@Wild Style, that comment was meant for I Are Lebo.
@Wild Style, Well a communist democracy is socialism.
@I Are Lebo, not that either are any good for society
@I Are Lebo, Thank you! Someone gets it!
@I Are Lebo, Socialism goes hand in hand with authoritarianism. So no, you can't be socialist and democratic.
@CriTiKa1, incorrect, look at other modern democracies such as the Nordic countries, France, Japan (technically a constitutional monarchy, but just like the U.K. The monarch has functionally no power), South Korea, Canada, etc., none of those have authoritarian governments. In fact, there've been more fascist powers (extremely conservative, inherently authoritative, system of government. And don't give me the whole Nazis were National Socialists, they used that name to sound more sophisticated and intellectual, not because they actually believed in socialism because that gives power to individuals) than authoritative socialist powers such as the U.S.S.R., P.R.C., or P.R.K. (All of which are/were authoritarian governments first with just the flavor of liberalism)
@CriTiKa1, Modern democracies I've listed describe themselves a social democracies, otherwise systems of government that operate under the idea that the government should work for the people, providing assistance to those in need and helping there be opportunities for all regardless of their starting place in life, but still using capitalism in their economies. It's basically capitalism lite which is, in my opinion, the best form of capitalism. I believe that capitalism is a lot like fire, a useful tool for maintaining and sustaining an economy, but, without precautions to protect the citizenry or environment, can quickly turn into the blazing forest fire of oligarchy if we're not careful
@Barry Dylan, that's Marxist socialism, not democratic socialism. Those are two different ideologies as far as the role of the government in the economy and citizens lives is concerned
@Wild Style, it's what you describe the members of what is effectively communist party of Peru, not social democrats (democratic socialists) which are definitely not communists
@Ariels Man Meat, Well fascism and communism are closer together than people think. Government roles are easily pictured as a horse shoe. The right side of the horse shoe indicates no government involvement in the economy. And the bottom side represents government control over the people. The tips being fascism (right) and communism (left) both leading to authoritative and proven unsuccessful as forms of government. The top of the horse shoe being anarchy (no government, technically working but hard to sustain).
@Barry Dylan, that's effectively how my government and law professor describes the government. However I fail to see democratic socialism as a political ideology being anywhere near the bottom of the horseshoe, at best it's around the middle of it's half
@Barry Dylan, sorry, I mistook you for someone else I was discussing this with. My bad
@Ariels Man Meat, However the countries you listed actually use what is called a mixed economy. Not capitalism. Capitalism is a supply and demand economy with no control from the government. It is extremely successful and uses a humans natural greed as a competitive mechanism, keeping inflation steady and keeping monopolies from overpowering the market. The wildfire is a actually a gorgeous representation in the sense it keeps growing ruthlessly. Capitalism won't collapse on itself, however it will not yield. It is the anarchy of the economy for better or worse.
@Ariels Man Meat, well a socialist democracy is in the center left. But socialism is just above communism in this sense. And it does work but it still struggles. Protecting a nation's citizens from the economy tends to hurt the economy, but protecting the economy from it's government hurts it citizens. I try not to let my personal views cloud my reasoning, so since you know what you are talking about. I would love to see if you know which party I am in from my hopefully slight bias.
@I Are Lebo, thanks for explaining it! So many people have no idea what socialism is... They don't even know America HAS been socialist for a good time now....
@CriTiKa1, socialism isn't a form of government it's a type of economic system. Communism Socialism and Capitalism are all economic systems. They are not the same as government systems
@I Are Lebo, people don't seem to understand the difference between economic systems and forms of government
@I Are Lebo, Actually, you can't be both. The only way for socialism to actually work is for a big, authoritarian style bureaucracy to take control of all aspects of economic life, taking privately owned businesses and putting them in the hands or the workers. Socialism also comes with forced labor, which is extremely undemocratic. The left will try to tell you that there is an inherent difference between democratic socialism and real socialism, but don't be fooled because there's not any difference.
@I Are Lebo, the picture didn't say government, it said socialism.
@I Are Lebo, Socialism is the first step toward Communism. You can't have one without the other.
@Ariels Man Meat, Countries you listed are not socialist countries. The key principle of socialism is that you can't own private property. Those countries allow individuals and corporations to own private property, thus they are not socialists. True socialism is one in which all property is public, and the only way to do that is by taking away people's property. And that happens through sheer force. Socialism cannot happen without authoritarianism.
@Assassinator2399, You're right. But like I said, it goes hand in hand with an authoritarian regime.
@CriTiKa1, they are democratic socialist countries, I was trying to help you understand that some forms of socialism aren't inherently authoritarian
@Barry Dylan, well I'm guessing libertarian/economic republican from your stances. Honestly though, I disagree with the sentiment that democratic socialism inherently struggles, there is a balance to be struck somewhere between pure democratic socialism and capitalism, however, between the two I'll always choose the welfare of people over corporations as I feel it's the moral choice to make in this instance
@Ariels Man Meat, Yeah I am most aligned with libertarian but morality tends to get in the way of economics. So in a sense you are kind of trading one for the other. But I understand your views, to protect the poor against the wealthy.
@Barry Dylan, You are incorrect about capitalisms keeping monopolies from forming. The only reason a monopoly doesn't form in a capitalist nation is because the government blocks buyouts and takeovers when there's a risk of one company becoming a monopoly. In a purely capiiticalist notation with no government control Capitalism can eventually control the price of products in an area. There has to be some government oversight otherwise Capitalism is no different than Anarchy in some aspects. The company because that one guy in an anarchy who takes over everything because he has the money and power to cut and force deals.
@Seohn, If you want to argue with me and say that I am wrong that capiticalism with no government oversight can form monopolies than shall I point out how decades ago the government had to step in when the Inthink it was the Bell phone companies held a monopoly. Or a more recent block of Comcast buying out Timewarner. A certain level of oversight has to be maintained to protect the citizens from the cooperations. Greed can also topple economies if it isn't. So capitalism isn't as perfect as you think.
@Seohn, well monopolies do form in capitalism, they don't maintain thanks to money circulation. If a company raises it's prices to high people will boycott or another company will assume the role of main producer. A monopoly forms all the time but in a king of the hill scenario. Now you lost me when you mentioned the government stopping monopolies. You know what public roads are? They are a form of monopoly owned by the government. Government is it's own monopoly in all aspects. Capitalism does nothing against oligarchies I will give you that, oligarchies however are not necessarily bad. If coca-cola raised it's prices to 3 dollars a can , would the world end? No people would just buy from Pepsi.
@Ariels Man Meat, If they don't follow the key principle of socialism hen they aren't socialists.
@CriTiKa1, okay, but even by your logic Marxist socialism doesn't necessarily have to be authoritarian. You can have a socialist democracy where all property and production is under the control of the governing entity but it still allows individuals to have a voice representing their region/demographic. The reason you probably think this can only exist in a sham form (where the representatives' power is meaningless and there's only one authoritarian body controlling everything), is because no one's actually tried it that way in a legitimate sense. The communist revolution in Russia started off with this as the ideal, however they let a power hungry Lenin in power and gave him too much power as an individual who then basically only kept the ideal of citizen government as a shell of its original ideal to appease the masses while he built the KGB and reconstructed the Russian military turning the country into a police state. If leader powers are limited, this can be avoided
@CriTiKa1, I am in no way a commie or support communist economies or governments, but I just want to be sure that the academic facts are available to those who're open to them
@Wild Style, @Dephenistrator, @CriTiKa1,
I live in a society that is both somewhat socialist and very democratic. It's the reason why I survive off of government assistance, it's the reason why my health care is free as a citizen.
Canada has a large portion of laws and programs that are socialist in nature. Socialist communism is the attitude of "the nation first, individuals never". Socialist democracy is "we are only as strong as our weakest link".
The argument over whether or not this attitude is a good thing, I leave to others. But my country is in a much better position than yours. Part of that is due to the increasing class gap in the USA.
That's not the whole problem. But it's a big part.
@Ariels Man Meat, I agree with you completely. The "dog eat dog" mentality of pure capitalism is maybe the worst form of modern civilization. That is the mentality that leads to calamities like the BP oil spill, the deforestation of the Amazon, and many other times big corporations have screwed over anyone and everyone that they can.
Communism has been completely vilified by Americans, but the truth is the only real reason that communism is doomed to failure is because of the system's vulnerability to corruption, not because the system itself is evil. A purely communistic society would be far better ethically than a purely capitalistic society. Granted, the pure communism won't last very long before becoming a dictatorship.
I'm from Canada, and things are pretty good here, for the most part.
@Uranusisbig, they're getting less so every year, unfortunately.
@Assassinator2399, no they do not. That's why they think it's impossible to be a democratic communist. They think that communism and dictatorship mean the same thing, because that is what they are taught.
@King Millner, you do not understand what socialism is. What you described is a totalitarian communism.
Not the same thing at all.
Medical aide, unemployment pay, those are socialism. Not work camps.
@BigfootUnibrowMan, yes you can. The two can go together. But they are not intrinsically connected.
@CriTiKa1, that is not socialism. You have a key misunderstanding of what socialism is. I suggest you do some more research.
@Barry Dylan, you realize that the point at which Coka Cola would raise its price to $3 per can is the moment after they drive all of their competitions out of business. The whole danger of a monopoly is that you CAN'T go elsewhere for that product or service.
Let me put it to you this way. If McDonald's had a monopoly over fast food, by somehow buying out or shutting down all of their competition. Then they raised their prices to $20 per burger and $45 per combos. You would only have 2 choices. Pay their prices, or don't have fast food at all. At this point, Burger King, Taco Bell, and all of the other choices would have closed down.
You can't create competition against them, because they have the resources to get you shut down.
Also, competition drives improvement. Without any competition, you really think McDonald's would taste half as good as it does now?
@I Are Lebo, I never said work camps I said forced labor. Yes, that is socialism. I don't think you understand what socialism is. With socialism, the ultimate goal is to eliminate private ownership and redistribute wealth to the people. This is only accomplished with big overbearing government. It benefits people who don't work as hard and hurts business owners who incurred all the investment and risk to start a business and are rewarded with profit. Now I do believe that there are services that the government needs to provide the people, but there is a limit to that. The left tries to paint people into the corner that anything provided by the government is socialism, which is a lie and a very unintelligent argument.
@I Are Lebo, look up the definition of socialism
@King Millner, that's not socialism... The problem is that MANY people, specially the creators of communism, said that socialism and communism were related just to attract followers. Socialism is not an economic system, and NOT a system of government either. Is an ideology whose purpose is to create policies to treat people as human beings and not commodities IN A CAPITALIST country. You don't think so?? Look up Robert Owen, the creator of SOCIALISM. He owned a company named New Lanark, where he applied company policies. He never mentioned the demolition of private ownership, and redistribution of wealth, nor interfering with democracy or private markets...
@I Are Lebo, I understand that, that was my representation of a oligarchy but if coca-cola drove out the competition and turned itself into a monopoly raked it's prices up ridiculously it would lose a lot of it's business. It happens every time a unnecessary product tries to get a foot hold as a monopoly. Coca cola is nice, but I (as well as most people) would drink water or even Gatorade with my meal if it got too expensive.
@Barry Dylan, oh absolutely. But I also guarantee the bit about it going down in quality.
There's no need to innovate if you're the only game in town.
That's why if one company actually won the video game console war, it would be the worst thing for gamers. The innovation would stop dead in its tracks.
@King Millner, that is communism. Not socialism.
No thanks on the Socialism, ever, because I've read lots of books.
@Will I Am Shat nerd, you know the United States is Socialistic, right? Just less so than many other developed nations.
@Laser Shark Robot, No, it's not. The government provides services to the people, but it is necessary the the government to provide some sources, like defense. Other services they currently provide, like the post office and healthcare, are also provided by private entities (which tend to do so better than the actual government). Don't try to paint conservatives into a corner saying that anything provided by the government is socialism, because it's just not true.
@Will I Am Shat nerd, some books are more equal than other books though;)
@Laser Shark Robot, Democratic Republic actually
@BigfootUnibrowMan, nice reference
*looks at downvote* *sniffs air* boys we've got a commie in our midst
You're thinking of communism.
@The Imp, Well technically Communist Russia was closer related to socialism but I understand the confusion. Just like America is not a capitalist society, ignorance confuses the curious.
@Barry Dylan, Yes but, its still communist. Not socialist. Socialism works fine.
@The Imp, it was socialist the defining quality being the "elected" government. That last sentence can be denied by history. It is one of those sounds great on paper, but a dystopian society when achieved.
@Barry Dylan, that sentence was denied by history because it was wrong.
@The Imp, I won't get in this argument, you will think what you have been taught, but like all great people, I hope you second guess what you were told.
@Barry Dylan, Don't assume you know my thought process.
Just one more French fry
@Pool boy till I die, haha, meant nope*
Just one more upvote
Socialism is the cousin of Communism.
Just one more fap
The happiest and most successful countries in the world are democratically socialist. Socialism is not communist. Old fart bags just think their the same and are afraid of that word. Also news flash: America is a socialist country. Pretty much Always has been. Its just when a nation organizes its economy more and puts some limitations on big businiess to prevent monopolies instead of letting it fall in on it self. Communism on the other hand doesnt work. People are too stupid; though no true communist country has ever exisited. The USSR was the fsrthest thing to communism it wasnt democratic at all. Pure Capitalism doesnt work either. It just leads to monopolies like in the industrial revolution. Basically kids, be balanced. Dont go to the extremes. Also dont be stupid
Just one more beer
@Sexy Homunculus, I second this motion. I've finished 3 and need more
Just one more inch