Capitalism vs Socialism isn’t about the common good, though that is the usual main point of any argument, but is actually just a lever to manipulate people and gain their support. What it is actually about are two groups, the one in control and the one that wants control motivated by self-interest.
Self-interest can be described as wanting society, and the people of that society, to pander to their needs without having to work for the rewards of that labor. These people can be described as parasites and opportunists. The best example is the pre-Civil War plantation owner sitting back and sipping mint juleps while the slaves do all the work and suffer in poverty while the planation owner reaps the rewards and stature.
Self-interest can also be defined as devoting one’s life to an ideal and ignores any facts that run counter to that ideal or would undermine that ideal. If someone has devoted their life to overturning the established order, they are not about to admit any mistakes as it would completely undercut the foundation of their life and lead them to self-doubt and question everything they have ever done. Better to observe ignorance then honor.
Self-interest, at its root, is about whom controls the levers of power, individuals or collectives and the collectives, corporations and unions are the most notorious. You could say government is there to control the depravations, but it is one of these two groups who control the government and set the rules. There is no difference between the two, they are people just like any other people and while each group bad mouths the other, it should be remembered that, “we have met the enemy and they are us”.
Each of the two collectives constantly seek to undermine the other by blocking access to resources, usually money, used to convince people they have God on their side and that their strength is the strength of 10 because their heart is pure.
God leaves it to free will because these people don’t have pure hearts, just greed for money and power and never having to provide for themselves; to have a comfortable life at everyone else’s expense.
Although it can be argued that all nations engage in socialism, it can reasonably argued that all people, every day, engage in socialism when a person buys something and pays for it is a re-distribution of wealth. But for those that argue for a socialist form of government it is about a macro scale and that if a little bit is good, then a lot is better.
“A lot is better” . . . . not really. Anything done beyond moderation is done both badly and dangerously. It is like a junkie that has gotten hooked on drugs, it always takes a bit more and a bit more till finally they overdose . . . . like Greece did, and France, Spain and Italy have come close to.
Further, governments are notorious for running business badly. In Germany, at the beginning of the Internet Age, when all there was expensive dial-up connections, a company wanted to start a low-cost dial-up service, The company was small and plan to start small and boot strap from there. The service proved to be wildly popular but couldn’t be extended to everyone immediately and so the German government ruled if everyone couldn’t have it, then no one could and the company closed down.
For those that argue for socialism I would ask, that company had a service, offered at a low price that was popular, so why didn’t the government step in and help the company expand? It because the government supports the established companies, the big name companies because when is all said and done, politicians need to be re-elected and they need money to run for office.
In a capitalistic society the government would not have used it’s power that way to rule by fiat whether a business can exist. Yes, there are a whole host of rules, regulations and licenses for a business and a corrupt government can abuse it’s power, but they can be overruled by the courts, suffer monetary damages and embarrassment that could affect their career. Not so in a socialist state, the law backs actions such as the German government and a business would have no recourse.
Kind of heavy-handed, eh? That is government of any kind and something we could do without if it weren’t for so many unstable people in the world, people that will do anything, like Adolf Hitler or Josef Stalin, to gain and keep power.
If all people could be responsible for themselves and use common sense, courtesy and respect towards one another, we wouldn’t need government, but that is a Utopian idea. It is not the Pollyanna version that socialists have offered that an all-powerful central government would make life better for everyone. There is a word for that type of government and it is “totalitarian”.
So pick your poison, right or left. Both want to tell you how to live your life without having to be told how to run theirs. OR you could choose to live your life free of outside influence, responsibly.
So when someone says, “believe in us, we offer you more and better”, run as fast as you can away because all they want is what you have and will give you little in return, just enough to keep you on the hook to give more