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Socialismhas three main meanings:
1. a theory or what is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism of social organization that advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, of capital, land, etc., in the community as a whole.
2. procedure or practice in accordance with this theory.
3. (in Marxist theory) the stage following capitalism in the transition of a society to communism, characterized by the imperfect implementation of collectivist principles.
Socialism is a social theory … makes sense. It theorizes that a collective cooperation of citizens will make all governmental institutions public. For example, no one will receive a healthcare bill when going to the doctor because they, and everyone else, have paid a hefty amount in government taxes. That’s where the collective cooperation comes in.
Communism, on the other hand, is a branch of socialism. It’s similar in that it’s still founded on the idea of collective cooperation, but differs in that communists believe that cooperation should be run by a totalitarian government made up of one and only one government.
Russia gave communism a bad name when it reigned as the USSR. It was here that thousands who were seen as threats to the state—artists, authors, intellectuals, even those who practiced religion—were sent to be slaughtered or exiled … uh, yikes. I guess you could call it socialism gone bad.
Although the USSR fell way back when, Russia is still very communist culturally, though economically they’re a capitalistic system. Countries like the People’s Republic of China are certainly more communist than Russia, where all things are nationalized up to the point that citizens can’t even make full use of the internet due to the government’s fear of free thought.
So, although communism is a form of socialism … it’s definitely the rotten egg of the two.
Democracy is “a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system.” The Greek demokratia is derived from demos, “common people,” and kratos, “strength.”
Basically, in a democracy, the head of state is usually a president, and the supreme power rests in the body of citizens entitled to vote (which is then exercised by representatives chosen directly or indirectly by them). Capitalismis part of democracies (not communist or socialist countries). The community as a whole does not own all of the property and wealth in a democracy.
Our modern ideas of socialism and communism tend to come from what Karl Marx outlined in The Communist Manifesto and what was later implemented in Russia by Vladimir Lenin and his followers (the Bolsheviks). Marx’s manifesto called for a complete overhaul of capitalist systems of the time. It advocated for the working class (the proletariat) to uprise against the aristocracy and other elites (the bourgeoisie), followed by the implementation of a new society where everyone was equal. That sounds great on paper, but the way it played out in Russia was a bloody revolution (including the arrest and execution of Czar Nicholas II and his family). In the 1920s, Joseph Stalin took over, and he established a completely totalitarian regime. Stalin’s government was marked by widespread famine, poverty, and death.
Modern-day Russia is neither socialist, nor communist. That ended in 1991. However, today, North Korea self-identifies as socialist, and it operates in a very similar way to Stalin’s USSR. China went through a Communist revolution not long after Russia did, and today they self-identify as “socialist with Chinese characteristics.”
It’s not all doom and gloom, though. Many Nordic countries operate as social democracies. This means they blend a lot of “socialist” policies (like providing state healthcare, social security, and worker’s compensation) with certain “capitalist” features (like private property and the democratic process).
To read more about other government words, take a look at our slideshow!
Think of the activities on the list below:
Parenting or caring for loved ones
Teaching or nurturing children
Creating art, music, dance
Working in struggling regions near our hometowns
Preserving the environment
Reading or writing for pleasure or personal growth
Preventative health care
Character-building for your kids, your team, yourself
Building community connections
Having a hobby
Becoming involved in local government
Most of us do some or many of these things — and usually, we don’t do them for money. What these activities add up to is what we might call a normal life, a well-rounded life of care and character, rich with community liberty high school online creativity and balance. When you do these things, you don’t think of yourself as participating in capitalism.
But the fact is, capitalism moves and energizes the modern world. And what capitalism values, our world does more of; what it doesn’t, we do less of. Many of us feel like the activities of a normal life are becoming harder and harder to accomplish. So the question becomes: In a system where capitalism is a prime determinant of value, how can we preserve what we truly value as humans, what matters to us beyond money?
I’m someone who was educated to thrive and dominate in our capitalist system. And my deep conviction now is: it has to change. I’m an Ivy League graduate who followed the 59 percent of my peers into one of the four jobs we all take — lawyer, business consultant, finance, technology — in one of the four US cities we all move to, and in the process abandoning our hometowns and the dreams that first inspired our academic success. I watched the country’s best-educated young people fall into jobs that were designed to harvest and concentrate wealth, working insane hours to pay off insane loans. And my hometown friends who didn’t end up on the Ivy League track are facing a bleaker future, as automation destroys more and more jobs in towns across America, disrupting communities and families. No matter where we stand on the socioeconomic ladder, the future of the “normal life” doesn’t look good.
In the US, and in much of the developed world, our current form of capitalism is failing to produce an increasing standard of living for most of its citizens. It’s time for an upgrade. Adam Smith, the Scottish economist who wrote The Wealth of Nations in 1776, is often regarded as the father of modern capitalism. His ideas — that the “invisible hand” guides the market; that a division of labor exists and should exist; and that self-interest and competition lead to wealth creation — are so deeply internalized that most of us take them for granted.
Today, many people contrast “capitalism” with “socialism,” the social ownership or democratic control of industries. The perception is that capitalism — as embodied by the West and the United States in particular — won the war of ideas by generating immense growth and wealth and elevating the standard of living of billions of people. By contrast, socialism — represented by the Soviet Union, which collapsed in 1991, and China, which moderated its approach in the 1980s — didn’t work in practice and was thoroughly discredited.
This assessment of capitalism triumphing over socialism misses a couple of important points. First, there is no such thing as a pure capitalist system. There have been many different forms of capitalist economies ever since money was invented around 5,000 years ago. The current form of institutional capitalism and corporatism is just the latest of many different versions. Similarly, there are many forms of capitalism in service around the world right now. For example, Singapore is the fourth richest country in the world in terms of per-capita GDP. It’s had an unemployment rate of 2.2 percent or lower since 2009 and is regarded as one of the most free and open, pro-business economies in the world. Yet the government in Singapore routinely shapes investment policy, and government-linked firms dominate telecommunications, finance and media in ways that would be unthinkable in America, Norway, Japan or Canada. Like Singapore, many countries’ form of capitalism is steered not by an unseen hand — but by clear government policy.
Imagine a new type of capitalist economy that’s geared toward maximizing human well-being and fulfillment. These goals and GDP would sometimes go hand-in-hand, but there would be times when they wouldn’t be aligned. For example, an airline removing passengers who’d already boarded a plane in order to maximize its profitability would be good for capital but bad for people. The same goes for a drug company charging extortionate rates for a life-saving drug. Most Americans would agree that the airline should accept the lost revenue and the drug company accept a moderate profit margin. But what if this idea was repeated over and over again throughout the economy? Let’s call it human-centered capitalism — or human capitalism for short.
Human capitalism would have a few core tenets:
1. Humanity is more important than money.
2. The unit of an economy is each person, not each dollar.
3. Markets exist to serve our common goals and values.
In business, there’s a saying that “what gets measured gets managed for,” so we need to start measuring different things. The concepts of GDP and economic progress didn’t exist until the Great Depression. However, when economist Simon Kuznets introduced it to Congress in 1934, he cautioned, “The welfare of a nation can … scarcely be inferred from a measurement of national income as defined above.” It’s almost like he saw income inequality and bad jobs coming.
Our economic system must shift to focus on bettering the lot of the average person. Instead of having our humanity subverted to serve the marketplace, capitalism has to be made to serve human ends and goals.
In addition to GDP and job statistics, the government could adopt measurements like:
Average physical fitness and mental health
Quality of infrastructure
Proportion of the elderly in quality care
Marriage rates and success
Deaths of despair; substance abuse
Global temperature variance and sea levels
Re-acclimation of incarcerated individuals and rates of criminality
Artistic and cultural vibrancy
Dynamism and mobility
Social and economic equity
Responsiveness and evolution of government
It would be straightforward to establish measurements for each of these and update them periodically. It would be similar to what Steve Ballmer (TEDxPennsylvaniaAvenue talk: Our nation in numbers) set up at USAFacts.org. Everyone could see how we’re doing and be galvanized around improvement.
This could be tied into a Digital Social Credit (DSC) system, in which people who help move society in a particular direction might be rewarded. For example, a journalist who uncovered a source of waste or an artist who beautified a city or a hacker who strengthened our power grid could be rewarded with social credits. So could someone who helped another person recover from addiction, or helped acclimate an ex-convict into the workforce. Even someone who maintained a high level of physical fitness and helped others do so could be rewarded and recognized.
Maybe you smile in disbelief at the concept of “social credits,” but it’s based on a system currently in use in about 200 communities around the United States: Time Banking. In Time Banking, people trade time and build credits within their communities by performing various helpful tasks — transporting an item, walking a dog, cleaning up a yard, cooking a meal, providing a ride to the doctor, etc. The idea was championed in the US by Edgar Cahn, a law professor and anti-poverty activist in the mid-1990s as a way to strengthen communities.
Despite the success of Time Banks in some communities, they haven’t caught hold that widely in the US in part because they require a certain level of administration and resources to operate. But imagine a supercharged version of Time Banking backed by the federal government where in addition to providing social value, there’s real monetary value underlying it.
The government could put up significant amounts of DSCs as prizes and incentives for major initiatives. For example, they could allocate 100 million DSCs to reduce obesity levels in Mississippi or 1 billion DSCs to improve high school graduation rates in Illinois, and then let people take various actions to collect it. Companies could help meet goals and create and sponsor campaigns around various causes. Nonprofits and NGOs would generate DSCs based on how much good they do and then distribute it back to volunteers and employees. New organizations and initiatives could be crowdfunded by DSCs instead of money, as people ‘vote’ by sending points in.
We could create an entirely new parallel economy around social good.
The most socially detached would likely ignore all of this, of course. But many people love rewards and feeling valued. I get obsessed with completing the 10-punch card for a free sandwich at my deli. We could spur unprecedented levels of social activity without spending that much. DSCs could become cooler than dollars, because you could advertise how much you have and it would be socially acceptable.
The power of this new marketplace and currency can’t be overstated. Most of the entrepreneurs, technologists and young people I best refinance rates houston are champing at the bit to work on our problems. We can harness the country’s ingenuity and energy to improve millions of lives if we could just create a way to monetize and measure these goals.
I’m no fan of big government. The larger an organization is, the more cumbersome and ridiculous it often gets. I’ve also spent time with people at the highest levels of government, and it’s striking how stuck most of them feel. One Congressperson said to me, “I’m just trying to get one big thing done here so I can go home.” He’d been in Congress for 7 years at that point. Another joked that being in DC was like being in Rome, with the marble there to remind you that nothing will change.
But I’ve concluded there’s no other way to make these changes than to have the federal government reorganize the economy. Even the richest and most ambitious philanthropists and companies either operate at the wrong scale or have multiple stakeholders that make big, long-term commitments difficult to sustain. We’re staring at trillion-dollar problems, and we need commensurate solutions. We’re in what is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism slow-moving crisis that is about to speed up.
Excerpted from the new book The War on Normal People: The Truth About America’s Disappearing Jobs and Why Universal Basic Income Is Our Future by Andrew Yang. Copyright © 2018 by Andrew Yang. Used with permission from Hachette Books. All rights reserved.
Watch Andrew Yang’s TEDxGeorgetown talk here:
The German theologian Paul Tillich (1886–1965) is renowned today for his powerful synthesis of Christian theology and existentialism. He released an acclaimed series of short books written during the 1950s, including the evocative titles The Courage to Be and Dynamics of Faith. These texts laid out Tillich’s dynamic theology with a rare combination of economy and mystery, memorably describing “faith as a state of being ultimately concerned” and declaring that “courage can show us what Being truly is.” Later, he authored an epic three-volume Systematic Theology, which dove deep into the murk of existentialist philosophy, famously arguing that God constitutes the ultimate “ground of Being” implied in humanity’s search for self-transcendence.
While Tillich has become a veritable giant within contemporary theology, many are not familiar with his lifelong commitment to socialism, in both theory and practice. Tillich was active in Germany’s religious socialism movement and became deeply conversant with Marxist theory and politics. Notably, he authored a lesser-known book, The Socialist Decision, in which argued for the necessity of socialism in the twentieth century — and which he deemed his best work.
Socialism was no mere academic matter for Tillich. He served as a chaplain during World War I, an experience that brought him face-to-face with the catastrophes of capitalism and militarism, as well as the political anemia of the Christian churches. He returned home to his native Germany, which was quickly turned upside down by the 1918 November Revolution. Kaiser Wilhelm II’s empire gave way to the cultural roller-coaster of the Weimar Republic, and Tillich and his second wife, Hannah Werner-Gottschow, embraced its social liberalism and experimentalism. They lived in an open marriage and frequented the avant-garde venues and social circles of the time.
Soon after the war’s conclusion, Tillich began to participate in working groups and intellectual circles with other religious socialists. In an early pamphlet coauthored in 1919, he urged “representatives of Christianity and the church who stand on socialist soil to enter into the socialist movement in order to pave the way for a future union of Christianity and the socialist social order.”
Then, in 1932 came his book The Socialist Decision, written as the Nazis transitioned from a threatening political movement to a lethal political dictatorship. Tillich’s politics had already made him a liability for the Nazi Party, and the book was immediately censored. He was allegedly offered a prestigious academic position on the condition that he repudiate the book and its criticisms of the new regime. Tillich laughed and was swiftly exiled to the United States, where he and Hannah lived out the remainder of their days.
Though nearly all initial copies of The Socialist Decision were destroyed by the Nazis and the fires of war, a few remained in circulation among Tillich’s confidantes. Nearly forty years later, it was translated into English. The Socialist Decision is an underappreciated and highly unique contribution to the tradition of religious socialism. In addition to its theological insight, it exhibits great imagination and political sensitivity in dealing with the perils and contradictions of Tillich’s time. As waves of right-wing populism and illiberal movements crash against the institutions of democracy in the twenty-first century, The Socialist Decision deserves to be revisited and applied to our political moment.
One of the main targets of Tillich’s book is political romanticism, which he defines as a nostalgic attachment to a “myth of origin [that] envisions the beginnings of humankind in elemental, superhuman figures of various kinds.” This myth of the origin is one of the great “roots of political thought” and is the basis for all “conservative and romantic thought in politics.” Tillich discerned three basic origin myths that animate romantic politics: soil, blood, and social group.
These myths of origin help to sanction the present in two primary ways. First, they idealize a paternalistic past in order to “hold consciousness fast, not allowing it to escape from their dominion.” 1st amendment audit 2020, they resist the demands of justice by freezing historical time into a recurring cycle of rise and fall. As Tillich writes, “The origin embodies the law of cyclical motion: whatever proceeds from it must return to it. Wherever the origin is in control, nothing new can happen.”
Myths of origin take on a special role in the wake of capitalism and liberalism, forming a bulwark against modern ideas of individualism, egalitarianism, and the rational improvement of society. Such myths imagine a transhistorical founding of the people or state — one beyond questions of legitimacy and justice — that establishes strict hierarchies and naturalizes the existence of social classes. This mythical order depends on an elite few with elevated status and powers of rule over the underclasses; when the dominated classes attempt to deviate from this order, inevitable chaos and ruin follows.
Though Tillich was concerned mainly with the rise of Nazism, his analysis is highly applicable to twenty-first century conservatism. Origin myths are highly adaptable to different political and social circumstances, and are easily wielded by both religious and secular interests. For instance, many conservative Christians interpret human history through a pseudo-Augustinian lens of endless decline and fall. In effect, “nothing new can happen”: it is our fate to endlessly repeat the Edenic fall from grace, as virtuous religious societies emerge, fall into sinful permissiveness and decadence, and collapse in ruin.
Tillich’s metaphors of soil and social group, which emphasize a primal rootedness and connection, are clearly deployed by nationalists to instill a sense of organic belonging and imagined community. The culturally and racially homogenous nation is contrasted with a decrepit one, polluted by unrestrained multiculturalism and the presence of foreign aliens — those who are not “native” to the soil and become parasites on national culture and institutions.
The most insidious myth of origin, according to Tillich, is the “animal form of origin” or “origin of blood.” This myth embraces violent hierarchy and racial superiority, imagining a clash with other “animal powers in a process of selection through struggle and breeding.” Rather than describing the long fall in terms of grace and sin, or vibrant national culture and decadent decay, it invokes the starkly racial crises of genetic pollution and demographic decline. Today, the Right increasingly relies on these tropes: right-wing figures like What is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism Murray and Andrew Sullivan have re-popularized notions of “race science,” while Tucker Carlson breathlessly warns 5 million viewers about the impending “great replacement” of white voters.
Despite the varied and sometimes contradictory uses of these myths by the contemporary right, they all serve to rationalize a nostalgic attachment to a gloriously idealized past. Because the bogeymen of “liberalism,” democracy,” and/or “social justice” have severed society from its primordial origin, the present can be recast as merely a hollow shell. The modern revolt against political and social hierarchies have handed illegitimate power to the unworthy, the immoral, and the outsider — a power they cannot capably exercise. And so, paradoxically, the conservative must fight to bring the past into the present. As Corey Robin memorably notes, “Conservatism is about power besieged and power protected. It is an activist doctrine for an activist time.”
This point is very important, as liberals and leftists often mistakenly assume that conservatism is primarily about the defense of the past. But in moments like Tillich’s, when liberal institutions are vulnerable and social movements threaten to upset the status quo, the reactionary response must be equally activist. In pivotal political moments, the conservative cannot be a crotchety defender of the status quo, fcbc hokkien sermon it has become clear that cannot halt the underclasses’ forward movement. Instead, conservatives must continually develop creative new forms of power to halt the decay of modernity and democracy — often by more effectively wielding the technological power and innovation that exploded in the modern era.
This paradoxical need to establish new forms of power by appealing to a romantic past easily leads to intense competition between conservative factions — both in Tillich’s time and ours. Tillich captures this conflict by distinguishing between “conservative” and “revolutionary” romanticism. Conservative romanticism “defend[s] the spiritual and social residues of the bond of origin against the autonomous system, and whenever possible [seeks] to restore past forms.” This kind of romanticism has animated much of modern conservatism, which usually tries to restore traditional forms of elite society by rolling back reforms, defending free markets, and neutralizing radical movements. In an American context, the “fusionist” project of combining traditionalist conservatism with laissez-faire economics is emblematic of this tendency.
But when liberalism threatens to be dragged to the left or traditional conservative elites falter, a more radical, “revolutionary” romanticism of the far right can emerge. Revolutionary romanticism “tries to gain a basis for new ties to the origin by a devastating attack on the rational system.” It brooks few compromises with political institutions and attacks traditional elites for their inability to order and purify the national community. Where revolutionary romanticism gains ground, it launches its devastating attack against representative democracy, first by strategically collaborating with traditional elites and then violently crushing them and all political opposition. This is precisely what happened in 1930s Germany, when the youthful Nazis entered into an alliance with traditional conservative nationalists — only to brush them aside once they’d served their purpose.
Tillich’s discussion of German liberalism and capitalism — both of which opened the door to Nazi reaction — is especially insightful for understanding our contemporary moment. Tillich was well aware that capitalism and liberalism arose as intertwined forces. Wielded by the capitalist class, liberalism was instrumental in severing society from traditional religious and communal bonds and introduced the world to the horrors of colonialism, imperialism, and slavery.
But the fact that liberalism and capitalism developed together did not lead Tillich to a dismissive critique of liberalism. Unlike some contemporary Christian theologians whose “anti-capitalism” involves categorically rejecting liberal modernity or rehabilitating preliberal political ideas, Tillich insisted on the necessity of liberalism for the socialist project. He praised liberalism’s individualism, rationalism, and moral egalitarianism as indispensable for authentic democracy and socialism. As he put it, “Liberalism and democracy in fact belong very closely together. Each is at work within the other; and in spite of the sharpest tensions that may arise between them, they can never be separated.”
However, Tillich was highly critical of the bourgeois capture of liberalism, which granted liberty and self-determination to the capitalist class, and denied it to the masses. It was because the capitalist class had failed to “actualize the democratic demands of its own principle” that liberal political radicalism in the eighteenth and nineteenth century quickly gave way to abstract idealism. Tillich knew that liberalism could not be rolled back — this would be yet another romantic reaction. Instead, to truly realize the liberal promise, liberalism would have to be severed from the cancel audible subscription amazon system that results in “total human objectification because of economic objectification.”
In our time, liberalism and capitalism have also come under intense scrutiny from both the Right and the Left. One notable criticism comes from a growing number of right-wing, largely Catholic intellectuals who have called for an end to liberalism. This cadre of “postliberals” contends that political liberalism has given rise to a tyranny of secularism, individual autonomy, and transgressive identities. Because they believe that liberalism is inherently hostile toward traditional Christianity, postliberals have coalesced around a strong state (often aligning themselves with far-right politicians), fighting culture wars against “elites” and “wokeism” and rehabilitating a hegemonic “cultural Christianity.”
Unlike “fusionist” conservatives, postliberals regularly criticize free markets for their role in maintaining liberalism. However, it is not capitalism itself that unsettles them, but the pervasive market relations that threaten the “traditional” forms of social, sexual, and religious life they wish to maintain. Inevitably, their softball criticisms of consumerism, markets, and Wall Street take a back seat to more pressing anxieties — for instance, who gets to use which bathroom, and the scandal of drag queen library hours. The free market is bad not because it subjects us to social and political unfreedom, but because it grants us too much freedom from our naturally “given” roles.
Though written nearly 100 years ago, Tillich presciently grasped how these social conservative what is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism against market tyranny play a role in the reproduction of capitalism:
The apocalyptic pronouncements of doom which the intellectual groups of political romanticism direct at industrial society do not hinder the bearers of capitalistic power from using the new, supposedly anticapitalistic forms of social reconstruction to secure their own class dominance.
Tillich also anticipated the political vision entailed in postliberalism: a combination of authoritarian capitalism and nationalism. Stark market inequalities will be maintained alongside a state that advances illiberal social policies and suppresses progressive movements — all in the name of preserving a unitary national identity. As Tillich put it, “The bourgeoisie, with the help of the idea of the nation, succeeds in overcoming its political opponents at home, in enlisting in its service the pre-bourgeois forces that are still bound to what is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism origin.”
By contrast, Tillich offers a far more progressive account of Christianity that contains sharper anti-capitalist resources for the Left. Unlike today’s postliberals, who want suppress liberalism — and the marginalized subjects who have laid claim to liberalism’s promises — Tillich knew that Christians must protect and radicalize the liberal legacy by deciding for socialism. He described this as the primary “internal conflict of socialism” rooted in the “internal conflict of the proletariat situation.” For Tillich, the true realization of universal equality and freedom could only be attained in a courageous decision for a liberal, democratic socialism.
This would require a decisive break from myths of origin, and their pessimistic politics of grandiosity and dominance, as well as a commitment what is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism a more human future beyond capitalism. As Tillich put it “the breaking of the myth of origin by the unconditional demand is the roots of liberal, democratic, and socialist thought in politics.” How this could be achieved in theory, let alone in practice, is the immense task that fell to socialists then — and now.
One complicating issue for German socialism in the early twentieth century was its understanding of Marxism. Tillich adopted a nuanced, balanced approach to Karl Marx in The Socialist Decision, neither praising him as a biblical seer nor dismissing him for his “materialism” or “economism,” as Christian theologians often do. Tillich found a great deal of moral value in the young Marx’s critique of capitalist alienation, and extolled Marx’s mature theory of historical materialism. But he was staunchly critical of “dogmatic” Marxists in Germany, who claimed to have discovered in Capital a lithomantic crystal that foretold an inevitable socialist future.
Tillich noted that belief an inexorable socialist victory became a lethal hallucinogen to many movements, as they vested their hopes in calculating the moment of crisis and revolution. As these confident hopes failed to materialize, a morbid sense of disappointment set in.
The belief that history moved irresistibly toward socialism contributed to a tendency among German Marxists becoming detached from a materialist praxis bent on changing the world. Instead of waging a relentless amazon smile logo to obtain power and enact socialist reforms, too many radicals gave into theorizing ever more elaborate predictive models of how capitalism would collapse under the weight of its own contradictions. In a grim turn, heated Marxist debates about forming a united front with “reformist” social democrats against fascism resulted in a Nazi waltz to victory. Marxist theory had dictated that fascism was little more capitalism’s dying gasp; instead, the Nazis marched social democrats and communists into the concentration camps.
There is another contemporary lesson to be drawn from Tillich’s analysis of German Marxism. Since the vulgar Marxist belief in the inevitability of revolution sputtered and then died, the contemporary left has fractured, and now spends a great deal of time mincing minute differences between social democrats, radicals, left-liberals, communists, Marxists — often in a needlessly puritanical fashion.
While conservatives happily seize on this (disproportionately online) phenomenon as proof of leftist intolerance, I hold a different view. As Ben Burgis and Natalie Wynn of Contrapoints have pointed out, much of this behavior is rooted in melancholia. Deflated by a sense of political impotence in the face of neoliberal, leftists increasingly turn to aesthetics, performance, and the cultivation of personal political brands.
Purity of spirit and staking out the most radical positions easily takes the place of the day-to-day work of engaging the masses and winning reforms that benefit working people. Small political achievements are deemed a distraction from revolutionary politics (both before and after they’re won). Fellow leftists who insist on more nuanced understandings of theory and practice are immediately told of the utter immutability of the systems of power and oppression we oppose. This dialectic of puritanical posturing and fatalistic resignation is one of the greatest obstacles to restoring hope among the Left that “we have it in our power to begin the world again.” We should heed Tillich’s corrective to leftist melancholia, which invoked prophetic hope: “Socialism lifts up the symbol of expectation against the myth of origin and against the belief in harmony.”
Tillich insisted metro pcs pay bill no fee making a “decision” for socialism, and developing the courage to work toward achieving it. As the forces of conservative and revolutionary romanticism bear down on the twenty-first century, Christians and socialists cannot assume that the arc of history will bend toward emancipation without costly struggle and reactionary backlash. But this is no reason to retreat to a vulgar revolutionary optimism or melancholic puritanism. As Tillich observed, the superiority of the socialist principle is rooted in a “propheticism” that makes an “unconditional demand” on the present, rooted in a promised future. Tillich concluded in The Socialist Decision, “Only through expectation is human existence raised to the level of true humanity.”
No one expressed this truly revolutionary expectation better than Tillich’s greatest pupil, Martin Luther King Jr, who deserves to be the final word on this point:
Tillich insisted on making a “decision” for socialism, and developing the courage work toward achieving it. As the forces of conservative and revolutionary romanticism bear down on the 21st century, Christians and socialists cannot assume that the arc of history will bend toward emancipation without costly struggle and reactionary backlash. But this is no reason to retreat to a vulgar revolutionary optimism or melancholic puritanism. As Tillich observed, the superiority of the socialist principle is rooted in a “propheticism” that makes an “unconditional demand” on the present, rooted in a promised future. Tillich concluded in The Socialist Decision, “Only through expectation is human existence raised to the level of true humanity.”
No one expressed this truly revolutionary expectation better than Tillich’s greatest pupil Martin Luther King, Jr., who deserves to be the final word on this point:
The question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be. Will we be extremists for hate or for love? Will we be extremists for the preservation of injustice or for the extension of justice? In that dramatic scene on Calvary’s hill three men were crucified. We must never forget that all three were crucified for the same crime — the crime of extremism. Two were extremists for immorality, and thus fell below their environment. The other, Jesus Christ, was an extremist for love, truth and goodness, and thereby rose above his environment. Perhaps the South, the nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists.
Matt McManus is a lecturer at the University of Calgary. He is the amazon music unlimited of The Rise of Post-Modern Conservatism and Myth, the coauthor of Mayhem: A Leftist Critique of Jordan Peterson, and editor of Liberalism and Socialism: Mortal Enemies or Embittered Kin?.Источник: https://jacobinmag.com/2022/01/socialist-decision-conservatism-nazis-christianity
“If a man is not a socialist at 20 he has no heart, but if he remains one at 30 he has no head.” — Attributed to King Oscar II of Sweden (1829-1907)
My widowed mother married my stepfather when I was 8. We moved from the Panhandle plains to a farm 12 miles east of Fort Worth, now lost in the smorgasbord of the Metroplex. My stepfather was a barber but also a truck farmer who planted watermelons, black-eyed peas, and cantaloupes. This was 1939, two years before December 7,1941, still in the grip of the Great Depression.
My what is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism farm machinery consisted of two mules and a walk-behind, single-bladed plow to break up the ground. The plow was pulled by the mules which were used to pull various other mule-drawn equipment. The mules wore “blinders,” pieces of leather covering the sides of the eyes so that the mules’ attention could not be distracted from their job. An analogy to the mules and their blinders is the modern Democrat Party whose members seem to be wearing blinders, blind to the fact that their party is leading the country toward a Marxist government.
In the face of borders out of control, the debacle, death, and embarrassment of Afghanistan, the obvious intent to destroy the Constitution and to write a new constitution to install a Marxist regime, and the senseless fiscal policies of the Biden administration — all of which the Democrats lie about — the “rank and file” remain entrenched in their delusion that the Party is the same Party it was in the days of Harry Truman. The Democrat Party today is not the Truman party. It is the Communist party. For those who refuse to wear the blinders of delusion, the evidence is everywhere.
Hillary Clinton and others in the Democrat Party appear on national TV claiming that their party is “saving democracy” from the evil Republicans and Conservatives and harangue Joe Manchin for “betraying democracy” by refusing to vote “yes” on the Build Back Better Bunkum. On the contrary, if Mr. Machin can stay the course, a statue should be built in his honor for saving democracy.
The title “Democrat” is obviously derived from the term “democracy,” a system of government ruled by the people. Rule by the people is not a motto of the Democrat Party and has never been. The core tenet of the Democrat Party is rule by the government, not rule by the people. (Albeit, not a Marxist government.)
William F. Buckley, noted conservative, along with others, modified King Oscar’s observation by changing the second line to “…if he is still a liberal at 30, he has no brain.” The modern Democrat Party, especially those who rule in Washington D.C. seem brain dead regarding the Far Left’s plan to destroy the country. The constant barrage of lies by AOC and the “squad,” by Bernie Sanders, and by the Schumer’s and Pelosi’s in Congress — all supported by Joe Biden — are really the greatest threat to democracy since World War II (contrary to Hillary’s propaganda). The main difference is that instead of an army to fight, the fight is against an ideology that has killed millions of people and impoverished millions more. The evidence lies in the history of Marxists governments.
King Oscar, obviously, was no champion of socialism. In spite of that, Sweden, along with the other Scandinavian countries, adopted a form of socialism which relies on capitalism to fund their social programs. The ups and downs of Swedish socialism have been adequately documented elsewhere. The point here is that Swedish socialism is a far cry from Marxist socialism. From their actions, it is quite apparent that the Washington Marxists have little interest in free-market socialism, even though their propaganda machines, in the form of national media and their party, trumpets “freedom,” the party stands for just the opposite.
Sweden has made no attempt to control its free-market system of government. On the other hand, as evidenced from the Obama administration, the Democrats want to control businesses in the United States by stifling them with regulations. When Donald Trump withdrew most of the regulations imposed by Barack Obama, the economy boomed. So far as other freedoms are concerned, the Washington Democrats are determined to destroy free speech, religion, ownership of guns — in fact the entire Bill of Rights?
The delicious irony of the mule analogy is that the symbol of the Democrat Party is the donkey, one parent of the mule. The “rank and file” Democrats should follow their symbol and kick the Marxists out of their party. They then can return their party to what it once was — if they so desire.
Carl Fowler is a retired professor of English at Amarillo College and lives in Amarillo.
Contrary to widely held beliefs, capitalism is not a system which exploits a large portion of society for the sake of a small minority of wealthy capitalists. Ironically, it is actually socialism that causes the systematic exploitation of labor. Since the socialist state holds a universal monopoly on labor and production, no economic incentive exists for the socialist state to provide anything more than minimum physical subsistence for the workers except to perhaps prevent riots or revolutions. Exploitation is inherent to the nature of socialism because individuals cannot live for their own sake, rather, they exist merely as means to whatever ends the socialist rulers -- the self-proclaimed spokesman of "society," may have in mind.1
In regards to morality, capitalism is the only moral (meaning pro-human-life) social system because it safeguards a human's primary means of survival: his mind. Through upholding individual rights, capitalism recognizes the fact the each and every human being must use his own mind to grasp reality and act accordingly to better his own life. Capitalism is the only political system that is based upon man's true nature as a being who possesses the faculty of reason -- capitalism is the only system that recognizes that human beings can think. Indeed, individual rights and capitalism not only protect the individual person and property of each human being, but most importantly, they protect the individual mind of every human being.
Historically speaking, capitalism has been claimed to be consistent with philosophies such as utilitarianism, social Darwinism, and even fundamentalist Christianity. However, these philosophies are in fact antithecal to the true nature of capitalism because they subordinate the good of the individual's life on earth to some "higher good." In fact, the only philosophy that is completely consistent with the theoretical requirements for understanding and promoting capitalism is the philosophy of Objectivism.
The protection from force, that is, the protection of individual rights, would be achieved through the use of a police force to protect the rights of citizens at home; a military, to protect the rights of citizens from foreign aggression; and a court system to enforce contracts and settle disputes between citizens. Since rights can only be violated by initiating force, the government would only use force in retaliation of those who initiated it.
The greatest aggressor against man -- the greatest spiller of human blood, has been the various governments that man has adopted throughout history. Because the government holds a legal monopoly for the use of force, the crimes committed by individuals acting on union bank philippines 24 hour customer service own behalf are trivial compared to the crimes, tyrannies, and wholesale barbarism that governments are responsible for. This is why it is crucial that governments be limited in their ability to use force by a constitution based upon individual rights. That was the key insight of the Founding Fathers which made America freer than any other nation on earth.
Any other function of government than those listed above, no matter what its intentions, would necessitate the violation of rights by initiating the use of force against the people it is supposed to protect. For example, compulsory tax-supported education forces some people to pay for the schooling of others for whom they would not have voluntarily paid for.
Freedom means the absence of physical force, including all forms of fraud. An individual is free when force is not being initiated against him, which means that there is only one source of unfreedom for any individual: other men. That is, a man's freedom can only be infringed upon when another person or group of persons initiates the use of physical force against him. The fact that an individual is unfit to run a mile in under four minutes or too poor to buy food is not a violation of his freedom. Why? Because in both of these cases no one is forcibly stopping the individual from attaining his ends. However, the fact that an individual cannot start his own electric company is a violation of his freedom. Why? Because in this case his actions are impeded by the use of force -- the government's legal monopoly on utility companies prevents him from starting his own electric company through the threat of force. Freedom is only a negative, it imposes no positive constraints on other people's actions. In a free (or capitalist) society all men may act as they choose as so long as they do not infringe on the freedom of others -- by violating their rights through force. Subsequently, it is what is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism a government limited to protecting individual rights that fails to violate the freedom its citizens. Since capitalism upholds individual rights as absolutes, capitalism upholds freedom as absolute.
All non-capitalistic societies force some men to live at the expense of others. Whether you are forced to live, in part or in whole, for the sake of God (as in a theocracy), "the underprivileged" (as in the welfare state), or the latest sadist in power (as in a dictatorship) does not matter, it is only the fact that some individuals are violating the freedom of others, not the method by which they do it, that matters.
In fact, capitalism is the complete embodiment of social justice. In social or political context justice means that every person gets no more, and no less, than what he gains through voluntary association with other men. A capitalist society is a just society because all individuals are considered equal under the law. Capitalism recognizes that it is just for a man to keep what he has earned and that it is unjust for a man, or group of men, to have the right to what other people have earned. Since all people must live independently under capitalism, all of the material values that a person acquires must be earned. Thus, the expression of social justice under capitalism is that what a man earns is directly proportional to what he produces, with no antitrust laws or progressive income taxes stifling his achievement for the sole fact the he did achieve. All other forms of government, such as the welfare state, institutionalize injustice by legally expropriating the property of some men and giving it to others.
Many people have trouble accepting that capitalism is a just system because of the existence of economic inequality. It is observed that famous celebrities and sports stars have very large incomes for work that is perceived as trivial, and that many hard working people make incomes which pale in comparison for jobs that are perceived to be a greater benefit to society. What people must realize is that it is perfectly just for a superstar athlete, even with little or no education, to make a hundred times the income of a scientist who has a Ph.D. and works much longer and strenuous hours. Why? Because the athlete creates enormous profits through ticket sales and product endorsements whereas the scientist generates very little revenue through his research. That is, each of them deserves what they earn, and what they earn is the result of how much wealth each of them creates (Incidentally, this is not to say that the athlete is morally superior to the scientist because he is wealthier). Since each man has the right to the product of his labor, it is completely just for the disparity in incomes to exist, and the only injustice to occur would be or the government to take money from the athlete and give it to those who supposedly deserve it on the basis of their "need."
Far from being exploiters, the true function of capitalists and businessmen ". is to raise the productivity, and thus the real wages, of manual labor by means of creating, coordinating, and improving the efficiency of the division of labor."2 By continuously improving the efficiency of labor, capitalists and businessmen are responsible for raising wages and creating employment which serve to raise the standard of living of everyone. Furthermore, by funding research and capital investments, corporations and capitalists make possible all of the modern day conveniences, from laser surgery to orchestra halls, that most people take for granted every day. In fact, since capitalists make available so much life-saving and labor-saving technology to so many people, they should be regarded as some of mankind's greatest benefactors. A few capitalists and businessmen have done more to help mankind live a more enjoyable life (indeed, most people would not even be alive today if it weren't for capitalists) than all of the humanitarians, social workers, and clergy men combined. If one considers human life a value, then they should regard capitalists as one of its greatest promoters. (If Mother Theresa really wanted to help people, she should try and accumulate enough capital to start a factory in a poor nation and employ thousands of people who would not have jobs without her.)
In a more fundamental sense, a capitalist is anyone (from a janitor to a millionaire) who lives solely by his own effort and who respects the rights of others. The best symbol of a capitalist is the trader. That is, the man or woman who only deals with other people on a voluntary basis. A capitalist is not an "exploiter" nor necessarily a "greedy" individual.
When most people think of "democracy" they usually mean a constitutionally limited democracy. The function of a limited democracy is to decide who held political power and how that power is specifically exercised (such as how many policemen or judges are needed), but what that power is should be strictly defined and limited in the constitution. (This is basically the original American system.) In a proper capitalist nation, a constitution based upon individual rights would be necessary to limit the actions of its citizens and the government. Under capitalism, the majority would never be able to vote to violate the rights of the minority, no matter how large the majority or how small the minority. Individual rights would not 1st franklin financial salaries subject to vote.
Statism is the concentration of power in the state at the expense of individual freedom. Capitalism is the only system which protects individual rights and freedom, but the variety of political systems which violate individual freedom are numerous: socialism, communism, fascism, Nazism, absolute monarchies, military dictatorships, theocracies, or the welfare state are all systems which infringe upon individual rights, which means they institutionalize the initiation of force against their citizens.
It must be realized that there are only two fundamental political philosophies: those who are for freedom and individual rights and those who are against them. The types of political systems who are against freedom and individual rights are numerous, for there are many ways to violate the rights of man, but there is only one political-economic philosophy which upholds that the rights of man are absolute and immutable -- capitalism.
A social system must be measured according to its ability to sustain each man's right to boone county iowa clerk of court, i.e. its recognition of man's nature and as such its defense of the requirements of a conceptual consciousness. Recognition of man's right to life means the recognition of the necessity of the freedom of man's mind, with reason as his sole means of survival, and of the freedom of man's body, by which the products of the mind are brought into reality. Therefore, an ideal social system must respect the nature of man, and provide a context in which the what is a significant difference between socialism and capitalism moral principle is the freedom to sustain one's own life by voluntary, uncoerced choice. Such an ideal system exists, if only in the minds of men, but it's name is not socialism.
Socialism holds that man is not an end in himself, and that he must sacrifice his own convictions for the sake of the "greater good" of the collective. Socialism requires the sacrifice of the individual mind, and hence denies the sole means of survival of man and in fact his very nature as a rational being. Such a system cannot honestly be held as an ideal.
The importance of Rand's ideas to the furthering of capitalism cannot be overstated, for she gave capitalism what it has badly needed: a philosophic defense. Rand recognized that the supremacy of reason and the morality of egoism are the indispensable philosophical foundations upon which pink perfumes victorias secret is based. In particular, her connection of capitalism to individual rights, and her recognition that individuals have the moral right to live for their own sake makes her philosophy of Objectivism of utmost importance for a thorough and consistent defense of capitalism.
The other tower of pro-capitalist thought is the most prominent member of the Austrian school of economics, and the greatest economic thinker of all time, Ludwig von Mises. (The Austrian school has been the leading school of pro-capitalist economic thought since 1871). Mises's identification of capitalism as being the system which benefits all, his refutation of virtually every accusation made against capitalism (such as the claims that capitalism leads to exploitation and depressions), and his proof of the economic impossibility of socialism rank him the as other great defender of capitalism of all time. Other major pro-capitalist economists are the members of the Austrian school such as Eugen von Bohm-Bawerk and Carl Menger, the French economist Frederic Bastiat, and members of the British classical school such as Adam Smith and Dave Ricardo. Furthermore, economists and political philosophers such as George Reisman, Henry Hazlitt, Tibor Machan, John Locke, and the Founding Fathers of the United States, and less consistent defenders such as Milton Friedman, F.A. Hayek, and Murray Rothbard all constitute important names in the defense of capitalism.
Political-Economic theory is the body of fundamental principles underlying the science of human action. Theory is abstraction. It is a process of identification; an attempt to describe perceptual data by means of a conscious focus of the human mind. To identify the ideal economic system, one must observe and understand what is, and what man is. Obviously then, theory is not an object (idea) detached from its subject (man). If a theory is correctly formulated, it is eminently practical. After all, if theory has nothing to do with reality, i.e. cannot be "put into practice", then how does one evaluate whether it is good or not? Ideas are not apart from those who think them. Actions are not apart from those who act. And actions are implementations of ideas. One may defend capitalism on the basis of its practicability as long as one is aware that the reason "it works" is because it is good theory.
Merryn Somerset Webb started her career in Tokyo at public broadcaster NHK before becoming a Japanese equity broker at what was then Warburgs. She went on to work at SBC and UBS without moving from her desk in Kamiyacho (it was the age of mergers).
After five years in Japan she returned to work in the UK at Paribas. This soon became BNP Paribas. Again, no desk move was required. On leaving the City, Merryn helped The Week magazine with its City pages before becoming the launch editor of MoneyWeek in 2000.
Twenty years on, MoneyWeek is the best-selling financial magazine in the UK and Merryn remains as its editor-in-chief. Merryn also has a weekly column in the FT and is a regular TV/radio commentator and speaker on financial matters.
She is a non executive director of three investment trusts – the Baillie Gifford Shin Nippon Trust, BlackRock Throgmorton, and the Murray Income Investment Trust – and of Netwealth.
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