Capitalism vs. Socialism
We know it’s a quite boring debate, but we can sum up each economic system in one line; capitalism is based on human greed and socialism is based on human need, right? No, it’s exactly backwards.
Been in e-commerce lately? Each of the thousand of products e-commerce offers represents the work of people who believe they have something you want or need. If they’re right, they prosper, if they’re wrong, they don’t. That’s how the free market works. It encourages people to improve their lives by satisfying the need of others. No one starts a business making a thing or providing a services for themselves. They start a business to make things or provide services for others. Take an examples how Carl’s Jr. spent million of dollars every year trying to determine what customers wanted. If their customers didn’t like something they changed it and fast because if they didn’t their competitors would, pun intended, eat them for lunch. The customer (that’s you) has the ultimate power. In effect, you vote every dollar you spend.
In socialist economy, the government has ultimate power. It decides what you get from a limited supply it decides should exist. Instead of millions of people making millions of decisions about what they want, a few people -government elite- decide what people should have and how much they should pay for it. Not surprisingly, they always get it wrong.
Have you ever noticed that late-stage socialist failures always run out of essential items like toilet paper? Of course, this isn't a problem for those who have the right conections with the right people. The chosen few get whatever they want. But everyone else out of luck.
Venezuela, once, the richest country in South America, is the most recent example of socialism driving a prosperous into an economic ditch. Maybe you think it's an unfair example, i'm not sure why, but okay. We'll ignore the fact that leftist activist celebrated it as a great socialist success right up until it wasn't.
But what about Western European countries? Don't they have a socialist economies? People seem pretty happy there. Why can't we have what they have like free health care, free college, stronger unions? Good question. And the answer may surprise you. There are no socialist countries in Western Europe. Most are just as capitalist as the United states. The only difference, and it's a big one, is that they offer more government benefits than the US does. We can argue about the costs of these benefits and the point at which they reduce individual initiative , thus doing more harm than good. Scandanavians have been debating those questions for years. But only a free market, capitalist economy can produce the wealth necessary to sustain all of the supposedly "free stuff" Europeans enjoy. To get the "free stuff' after all, you have to create enough wealth to generate enough tax revenue to pay for everything the government gives away. Without capitalism, you're Venezuela.
In a 2015 speech at Harvard, Denmark’s prime minister took great pains to make this point: "I know the some of people in the U.S associate the Nordic model with socialism, therefore i would to make one thing clear. Denmark os far from a socialist planned economy. Denmark is a market economy" Lars Lokke Rasmussen said. So, when you point to Denmark as a paragon of socialism, you’re really singing the praises of capitalism. The more capitalism, the less socialism you need. Look at U.S since 2017. A policy of lower taxes and less government regulation (that’s more capitalism) has led to robust economic expansion, something thought imposible just a few years earlier. Unemployment, notably among minority groups typically most at risk for poverty, is at a generational low. Economic expansion gets people off welfare and into work (that’s less socialism).
None of this requires degree in economics. Common sense is all you need. That’s why it’s so frustrating to see young age people praising socialism and criticizing capitalism. It’s bad enough they’re working against their own interest (better job prospects, better wages, financial freedom) but they’re also working against the interest of the less fortunate.
Capitalism lead to economic democracy. Socialism leads to the economic dictatorship of the elite, always and everywhere.