Capitalism And Socialism Are Not Opposites

Dec 21, 2017 | | 2 comments

Are you under the belief that the founders of the United States did not think about socialism?

Though the term socialism wasn’t coined until 1817, if I recall the date, by Henri de Saint-Simon, who in his early years took part in the siege of Yorktown under General Washington, the concepts of democratic socialism was not foreign to the founders of the United States. Nor, were they opposed to the idea of government taking care of the citizens in some ways. After all, the founders of the United States were heavily influenced by the Enlightenment philosophies of Europe, and near all were “Ivy League” college graduates with degrees in law, business, politics, science, religion, and philosophy. As well, the founders were avid readers of prominent writers of the time, such as Thomas Paine – who happens to have published Agrarian Justice in 1797, which is a pamphlet that details the concept of taxing land owners once per generation to pay for the needs of those who have no land. Uh, hello? This is thoughts on wealth redistribution, 18th century style!

Further, in the United States constitution itself are socialistic concepts, though they didn’t call it socialism in their time – rather good and responsible government. In Section 8 of Article 1, Congress authorized a variety of social institutions for the “common Defence and general Welfare of the United States,” that is maintained through “Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises”. For example, to establish post offices and roads, to raise and support an Army and Navy, and no where does the constitution say that such acts of socialism should be refrained just to these provisions. It was President Jefferson himself that authorized the laying of our nation’s highway system, thus paving the road for government sponsored public transportation to support the democratic capitalist economy that made our nation’s emergence onto the world scene a tad different from the rest. And, let’s not even get into the views of the founders on public education, and its imperative social need for every citizen – so much, that some thought it should be free. One could write a book on this (and many have)!

So, how were you taught to define socialism?

According to the founders of this nation, being free to be an individual is great! But, such individualism has its limits, when it comes to the social welfare of a nation of individuals. It’s a balancing act, that requires a citizen involved representative democracy to achieve. In the United States, it is capitalist-based democratic socialism that governs national order! When our founders found it necessary to tax the rich or collective community to provide benefit to the needy or the public whole, they were embracing a form of socialism. Yes. There are different kinds of socialism, but the common core to all forms is a certain social ownership and responsibly for everyone within the whole. Some systems strip out the capitalism to achieve this and, thus, create communism. Some systems embrace capitalism, and find a political balance between government and free enterprise. Those countries that strip socialism away, keeping only the capitalism, lead themselves towards fascism.

Socialism is at its fundamental core about democratic public economic control over production and its wealth affects. This can take root in a range of many institutions for the common good, but is all regulated by a government that is collecting taxes upon its citizens. We simply could not be a capitalist nation, without embracing an agreed upon form of socialism by which to govern it for the common good.

Final thought: The first thing I try to get across to people about history is that history is always messy. There are no absolutes, and apparent contradictions can usually be found within individuals and within societies. So, it is with the Enlightenment philosophies of Europe and with the beliefs and actions of the U.S. founding fathers and mothers.

#MAGA through inclusive capitalism-based democratic socialism that eliminates wealth inequality, racism, xenophobic nationalism, religion-influenced politics, misogyny, and the failure to educate thoroughly. So, that everyone in the United States knows that they, too, are #InHisImage and not #UnderHisEye, because everyone has a fair and honest opportunity for “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” as is afforded in writing by our U.S. Constitution.

Posted in: Civil Rights, Economics, Family, Health, History, Life Experiences, Non-Theism, Politics, Racial Issues, Relationships, Religion, Science, Sexual Orientation, Society

2 Responses

  1. Since before 2010, it’s been a statistical fact that upper 20% of U.S. citizens own over 80% of U.S. wealth, and the lower 80% own less than 20%. It is true that even ten years ago, the so-called “Middle Class” of America, that most of us fit into, is actually the bottom 10%. Hence why one job by one income earner in a family no longer pays for a home to own, a car to drive, education for the children, healthcare expenses, a savings account, food on the table, and things like television and phone. Now, I ask you, how does giving $20 a month in tax breaks to the lower 80% help the majority of us?!

    The so-called “Middle Class” of the United States already no longer exists! There is only Upper Class and Lower Class. The only way to fix this is to (1) create a flat tax across the board -with- a graduated wealth tax upon the top 20%, (2) end the presence of career politicians with term limits to congressional service, and (3) establish higher national minimum “livable” wages, free upper education, and universal healthcare.

    2018 is around the corner, folks. Mark the voting date! It’s time to #MAGA for all U.S. citizens. #Resist! #TCJA #AHCA

    Building a Better America – One Wealth Quintile at a Time
    http://www.people.hbs.edu/mnorton/norton%20ariely%20in%20press.pdf
    Abstract: Disagreements about the optimal level of wealth inequality underlie policy debates ranging from taxation to welfare. We attempt to insert the desires of ‘‘regular’’ Americans into these debates, by asking a nationally representative online panel to estimate the current distribution of wealth in the United States and to ‘‘build a better America’’ by constructing distributions with their ideal level of inequality. First, respondents dramatically underestimated the current level of wealth inequality. Second, respondents constructed ideal wealth distributions that were far more equitable than even their erroneously low estimates of the actual distribution. Most important from a policy perspective, we observed a surprising level of consensus: All demographic groups—even those not usually associated with wealth redistribution such as Republicans and the wealthy—desired a more equal distribution of wealth than the status quo.
    Keywords: inequality, fairness, justice, political ideology, wealth, income

  2. “Coffee Party USA moves forward with confidence that this republic’s democracy is broken, that The People can fix it, and that it will be civility and reason that will win the day over divisive rhetoric and talking points.

    Coffee Party continues its commitment to serving our members and supporters by offering: fact based civil discourse on social media; opportunities to gather together; and targeted actions, “on the pages and in the streets”.

    We believe that we share common goals as a people. We all want to live in safe communities with access to well-paid jobs that will allow us to provide for our families, help us secure a decent education for our children, and allow us to access adequate health care. We call upon the American people to transcend the hyper-partisanship that is so common today and move toward organizing communities around the mutual desire for ongoing, responsible civic engagement.

    We understand that we must act boldly to not only break the cycle of corruption, but also recommit to the concept of a government of, by and for the people. We are the government. The government is us. We want to fix the problems in our government, not turn against the idea of government.”

    Incite Civility & Reason – The Coffee Party USA
    http://www.coffeepartyusa.com/
    Coffee Party USA is a grassroots, transpartisan movement that aims to restore the principles of our republic and spirit of a representative democracy in America. It started on Facebook as a popular fan page in January 2010 and has since blossomed into a national 501c4 non-profit organization with a network of nearly a million people.

    #MAGA by engaging in citizen ownership and responsibility for government. A representative democracy needs to represent the entire population, our shared common goals and values, not just the loudest ranting minority political voice or the extremism of partisan talking points! Do you believe that we are #inhisimage, whether deist or theist? Then, show that you do, by reigning in the divisive language and attitudes that only seeks to move our nation further away from our democratic origins. #CoffeeParty #Indivisible #Resist

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