Just What Is Socialism?

College of Political Knowledge

I am glad you asked!  I apologize for the redundancy, but as long as people keep using the term to describe Obama, I will be here to dispute their claim…..

As promised, I will once again teach you what socialism is and what you could expect from a government….

First, if you learn nothing else from our time together….learn this one fact….the statement, “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need” was NOT uttered by Marx, but rather a Frenchman, Louis Blanc…….

I have been fighting the insult of socialism for many years…..too many people throw it around and yet have NO idea what it is they are saying……I try to help people understand the political theory known as socialism.

The newest red meat thrown at Repubs is Newt…well not so new but rather the next right winger to get his day in the light….and Newt does not disappoint…..he has thrown the term “socialism” around more in the last couple of weeks than in most of his career…..sorry my GOP fans….Newt is an arrogant sociopathic little toad…you know this from past dealings with the man….but yet hatred for a prez will allow this person another look see…..

And then there is Rick Perry using the insult…….“We have a president who is a socialist,” Perry said in response to a question at the early morning GOPdebate in Concord, N.H.

And now the GOP’s front runner, Mitt, is using the insult but at least he tries to disguise the fact…..”He wants to turn America into a European-style entitlement society.  We want to ensure that we remain a free and prosperous land of opportunity.”  (The ever present “WE”….whoever they are)……

Like I have said…..Many use the term….few understand it…….Let me try to make in simple so that there is NO confusion….

  • Socialism guarantees everyone a decent life with food, shelter, health care, and education.
  • Socialism will work to eradicate poverty and great disparities of wealth.
  • Socialism works to uproot racism, sexism, and homophobia. It aims to dismantle the hierarchies of gender and race.
  • Socialism focuses on the common good as the way for individuals to excel and explore their talents and desires.
  • Socialism puts working people—the working class—in charge of their destiny through workers’ ownership and active participation and management of production, land, public services, assets, and utilities.
  • Socialism works to end the brutal cycle of policing and mass incarceration, and seeks to build a justice system that values human life and community empowerment.
  • Socialism puts the global ecological system at the center of all economic activity.
  • Socialism is about expanding individual rights (including the freedom to criticize), deepening and widening democracy and democratic institutions (like government, schools, unions, community groups), and ensuring dignity.

In other words….it is democracy at work……a political theory that involves and includes all people in the process of governing…….with that said…I do NOT see Obama fitting into that category at all.

Democracy is a form of government in which all citizens take part.  It is government of the people, by the people, and for the people.

Socialism is where we all put our resources together and work for the common good of us all and not just for our own benefit.  In this sense, we are sharing the wealth within society.

Of course when people hear that term, “Share the wealth” they start screaming, “OMG you want to rob from the rich and give it all to the poor!”  But that is NOT what Democratic Socialism means.

To a Democratic Socialist, sharing the wealth means pooling tax money together to design social programs that benefit ALL citizens of that country, city, state, etc.

And there are many forms of socialism……..but the basic tenets are the same……it is a truer form of democracy than most others……the people are in control….and is that not what we think the Founding Fathers had in mind?

Now ask yourself….do we, as Americans, have a social contract….that is a contract between the governed and governing?  (A future post coming to a blog near you)….


47 thoughts on “Just What Is Socialism?

  1. “Newt is an arrogant sociopathic little toad”…I just had to repeat that, it made my morning. Love this post, it’s a keeper for me, now where shall I put it so to remember where it is for reference purposes? That’s kind of an important question because I have to access “reason” in order to answer it, the kind of reason that is absent from the hordes of people who believe America (our tax dollars) are spent on the most powerful military force in the world in order to keep “socialism” from storming American beaches.

    1. B. thanx for the props…..as you can see it is a pet peeve of mine…..I try to educate people to facts and not the hype of the media and BS politicians….

  2. Reblogged this on In Saner Thought and commented:
    They are at it again! The liberal use of the “S” word……I have tried to keep people from making a horrible mistake…..Obamacare IS NOT…I repeat IS NOT socilaism….and anyone that paints it as such is painting a lie! chuq

  3. Nicely written. But one problem, the founding Fathers did not want a Democracy, that is why we have a Constitutional Republic. Democracy, by it’s own nature is “rule by majority”, not exactly a freedom loving form of government.

    I do like your definition of what socialism is, very well done. It really does sound good on paper. Human traits stand in the way, like greed, jealousy, the desire of power etc. For these reasons, and others, is why no government has stood the test of time.

    Nice place to visit, I hope I’m welcome to come back and chat 🙂

    1. Hello gman and welcome to the discussion….I always enjoy having more people show up that are willing to comment…..you are more than welcome any time you would like to chat……

      We have a representative government because our founders knew it was the only type of democracy that would protect property rights and after all that was the most important issue they dealt with…..the people were the furthest thing from their minds…..

      1. Thank You for the kind welcome! 🙂

        I often read what some folks believe the Founding Fathers were thinking. Funny, none of us were there to really confirm any of those assumptions. Having read quite a lot on the framing of the Constitution, I found it amazing that it was ever completed at all. The people drafting our new type of government back then were as diverse politically as we are here today. The fact that the document made it for a vote is rather remarkable considering this.

        Private property rights were considered a priority to achieving freedom from tyrannical governments, saying that people were not on their minds is nonsense. Even today, private property is seen as one of the last bastians of freedom in America, an achievment made through hard work and determination.

        Back to your socialism subject. The ideas presented are admirable and in a perfect world would be great.

      2. I have written several posts on the Constitution on what I believe some of the motivations were….but you are right…none of us were there or there are none left for us to consult all we can do is speculate…..let me know if you would like to read some of the others I have written…I will send you the links….chuq

  4. Oops, hit wrong button, LOL 🙂 This part of socialism “Socialism guarantees everyone a decent life with food, shelter, health care, and education.” would also be its demise. People are just note made all the same and cannot do the same things. When a society becomes an equal society economically, it will destroy itself. Putting this as simply as I can, if the school custodian has the same lifestyle as the factory worker and as the teacher and the doctor, the game is over. Once people realize they will get an equal lifestyle by working less harder, if at all, as those that work very hard, within a generation or two there will be no more hard workers. When the incentive of success is equalized in the socialist societ, incentive is then lost. That is the end of the utopia called socialism.

    1. I wish I could agree with you…..I just do not think it is accurate to say that incentive would be destroyed…..but I understand the thinking and since I was in the private sector I have seen the American worker grow lazier by the year and we have a capitalist system…..the so-called American Dream has been dying for about 40 years or so….chuq

      1. It’s OK to disagree! My premise has been proven by the American Indians and govt involvement. I will have to go back some years to find the report. American Dreams demise coincides with the growing govt involment in our lives. Government IS the problem, as long as people can vote themselves govt cookies, the Dream is dead. It’s been great to chat here, thanks for being responsive and cordial 🙂

      2. Interesting article on the 2 nd. I think totally different as to why there was a need for the 2nd. Your claim that it was in place of a standing army and temporary is mistaken. We were never supposed to have a standing army and that is supported by the Constitution itself, but hey, we all have opinions 🙂

      3. I just looked at the history and not the ideology…..thanx…..I do a lot of that sort of thing….and that helps my point…if we did not have a standing army a militia was needed to quell any unrest or threat

    2. The problems of both socialism and capitalism is that in their pure forms, they will fail because neither of them take the true beast that is human nature into account.

      As pointed out, socialism fails because people are mostly lazy. As long as their needs are being met, most people will do the minimum. If a person does not need to work for food, shelter, medicine, and so on, most people won’t. It will eventually collapse in on itself.

      Likewise, Capitalism fails because of greed. There are too many people who can be considered psychopathic. These the types who are never satisfied with what they have. They hoard resources and have no qualms about cheating others; generally, they have no ethics. Capitalism becomes a system of haves and have-nots. Eventually, the have-nots get to a point where even basic needs are not met and things get interesting.

      The system really needs to be a mixture of the two. There needs to be enough capitalism to make sure that grifters are given the proper motivation to do their fair share but not so much that greed is rewarded. Conversely, there needs to be enough socialism such that upward mobility is possible for the ambitious and that we do not have people living under bridges wasting away due to hunger but not so much that sloth becomes a way of life.

      1. How does social democracy incorporate capitalism? I see the socialism components but I am failing to see the capitalism.

      2. What is the mechanism that social democracy would use to ensure that government will not get too big as to start retarding profits and business. Also, you still have that problem of people “voting themselves money” that endangers all democracies.

      3. Terrant the only mechanism I can think of off hand is anarchy….greed is a universal affliction…..even with the authoritarianism of Communism could not gey away from it…..

  5. I have been reading along, super busy. I will post in the morning. I have much to say, just no dang energy. I will ask, can anyone define Capitalism? That would help, because noone seems to know what it is, LOL!

    1. One thing I find refreshing is that so many people see what a mess society really is. Yet, with the suffering happening daily here within our borders, no one speaks out about government and their insane spending habits. Should we not fix our own problems before helping other countries? Should govt officials who go on lavish trips on the taxpayers dime be held accountable? Why do we as a nation continue to tolerate Obama’s non-stop vacations?

      We, as a people, can never help those less fortunate until we reign in those who are in the way, the very people required to “enforce” a socialist society, government. Food for thought 🙂

      1. gman, Obama’s vacations are no more important than the constant ones that Bush took to Texas……..government? now here we go…..we can cover this from many directions….to me it is a social contract in that I give up some freedoms in the hope that my country can move forward….the social contract is there whether socialist or whatever…….and as you look at today the “enforcer” of our so called free markets is….wait for it…..government….the only way to avoid the interference of government is to buy a mountain and live there in isolation and a reality show for History Channel….

      2. Obama’s vacations are a distraction. He has not had any more vacations than his predecessor. The politicians and pundits that are making it an issue were very quiet when it was their guy doing it. Funny how much of this happens in general.

    2. Capitalism? Oh this one can set off a whirlwind of comments….but what the Hell…..Capitalism is an economic system involving the private ownership over the means of production, distribution of goods, and the overall structure of businesses. Profit motive, via success, is a key driver in a capitalist society where millions of businesses must compete against one another to survive. As a result, capitalist societies are usually among the most innovative and successful at societal advancement and technological creation. A reward-for-success model drives people to innovate, create, and produce goods or services that others want to buy.

      That is my long answer……short answer would be …..maximization of profit……does it help?

  6. LOL, I do live on a mountain in isolation. We do have fundamental differences on the job of government, which I expected. You would give some freedoms to Govt, to do what the people should do, I want govt to protect my freedoms to be part of what the people should do (move forward). With govt interference, which is in every aspect of our economy, there is no such thing as a free market. The markets are regulated and taxed, that’s far from free. But I do understand your position. My long ago education did not include terms like “social contract”. I reckon that it’s expected to have govt run education teach people to want govt. I would do the same. 🙂

    1. The only place that I can think of right now that is a free market, as it is defined, is the drug trade…..to me without government we have what the media likes to call anarchy….and without taxes, that pesky word, we would have no roads, bridges or whatever….how so you pay for services like fire and law enforcement? It is not a good idea for the private sector to run these…….teaching can be done without making it a propaganda arm….sorry but everyone wants government just the degree of which is the only debate…..

      1. The free market is alive, just quiet because it’s called “black market”. That is the govt term for what they cannot control. I have not been a political person prior to the last 8- 10 years. I’m a vet of the first Gulf war, as it’s called (it was no war, it was a slaughter of the Iraqi military) . I’m not a Republican, by any stretch, because I despise the political parties. They are the monopoly on elections that needs destroyed.

        I’m not an Anarchist either, I see small govt where I live and support it totally. So here I am, basically a political enemy. What say you? 🙂

      2. Good morning my friend……by your telling of yourself….you are an anarchist,,,,a anarcho-capitalist,,,,,,which is the elimination of state in favor of individual sovereignty in a free market…..it is simplistic but sounds like you….just a thought….

      3. Anarchist? Not really. I think we need some government and the services they provide. I’m against the govt when it tells me what I can’t do in my own home or what I must purchase. Basically, provide the services that we need and are willing to pay for (taxes), then get the hell out of our lives. I don’t think we need a Federal Govt like we have now. They are too intrusive and in many ways are not following the Constitution. I have lots of issues with the Feds, but I’m fine with state and local govts 🙂

      4. If the Fed disappears then the state and local will take its place……there will always be intrusions to despise….

      5. Where I live, the govt folks know who they work for, the people, the Feds have lost sight of that. The Feds think they are rulers over the sheep, that needs to change. I’m all for term limits , and short ones at that.

        I appreciate the cordial discussion 🙂

      6. I agree term limits and retirement when 65 arrives…..I have watched what Michigan is doing with their emergency manager that can basically fire elected officials….I do not like this type of “governance”…..no problem always willing to discuss anything you would like…hope to see you soon…..chuq

  7. THere are a lot of cities that are having fiscal problems. I think that politicians who are in office now, plus those who held those positions in the past that led to the fiscal problems should be arrested for defrauding the public. Yes, that includes Bush and the rest of the living Republicans, Failing to manage the public treasury, big or small, should be a crime. I would say that I don’t like politicians much, I don’t think it should be a career and I think they should be held accountable for wrongdoing or mismanagement. Start having public hangings of the bad ones, things will change real quick. 🙂

    1. gman, the problem is they are ALL bad….I like a limit of 12 years…no lobbying for 10 years….and massive campaign reform (a post to come)…..

      1. Well, I can agree with that. I would cap spending on campaigns as well, base it on number of people who can vote for the candidate. Give the average person a chance to compete.

  8. Then we would need to change the qualifying crap one must jump thru to become candidate…

    I also agree! I find it great that we agree on so many things! 🙂

    1. gman, I believe that if we, meaning all others, were to sit down and actually communicate with each other instead of name calling and insults, then we would just as you and I have that we all have many things in common…..and if we could work on that premise we could make this a great country….

      I am an opinionated SOB so I write on many subjects and I would love for you to offer up your opinion….we may not agree but the exchange would be great….

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