What Socialism Is in America

You hear the word socialism a lot these days and you might think you know what it means, but it is actually more nuanced than you think.

Socialism is a political and economic theory that advocates public or collective ownership of means of production to achieve greater equality and empowerment.

Socialism is a political and economic theory that advocates public or collective ownership of means of production to achieve greater equality and empowerment. The term “socialism” can be used in either a positive or negative sense.

Socialists believe that capitalism is exploitative, which results in a contradiction between the individual’s interests and the societal good. They argue that socialism would allow for worker’s self-management, which would solve this problem by removing the root cause: private ownership of capital and its return on investment as an end goal, hence removing what they see as an inherent conflict between labor (the proletariat) and capital (the bourgeoisie).

Socialist systems have been established through a variety of reformist and revolutionary methods; including democratic elections/nationalization/expropriation/military takeover/mass party affiliation etc., but all based upon centralized control over resources being utilized for social benefit rather than private accumulation.

Socialists believe that the problems within capitalism (low wages, exploitation, poverty) can be solved by replacing it with an economic system in which capital and land are owned by the state, meaning the state owns the factories and farms, for example.

Socialists believe that the problems within capitalism (low wages, exploitation, poverty) can be solved by replacing it with an economic system in which capital and land are owned by the state, meaning the state owns the factories and farms, for example.

For example:

  • “Socialism means taking things over.” -Bernie Sanders
  • “But if you think of socialism as a revolutionary movement that overthrows the existing order,” -Noam Chomsky
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The socialist Democratic Socialists of America is the largest socialist organization in the U.S., with about 50,000 members.

The Democratic Socialists of America is the largest socialist organization in the U.S., with about 50,000 members. But this isn’t the only socialist organization in the country: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) is not alone on its mission to spread economic equality and opportunity for all. There are also other groups, including Socialist Alternative (SA), which has endorsed Bernie Sanders and supports more radical policies than DSA does; Solidarity USA and Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO), which both fall on what could be described as the left wing of DSA; and more splinter groups whose names may change from time to time as members come and go.

Countries such as Denmark and Norway fall under “social democracy,” another left-wing economic system that’s not quite as extreme as socialism. In social democracy, resources are still managed by market forces rather than government entities

Social democracy is a political ideology that supports a welfare state, but not a socialist economy. In social democracy, resources are still managed by market forces rather than government entities. In other words, employers compete with each other for workers and customers. The most famous example of social democracy in the United States is Denmark.

The U.S. already provides some services that are considered socialist, such as Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security.

  • You may already be familiar with some of the social programs offered in the U.S., such as Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security.
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Medicaid is a government program that provides health insurance to low-income individuals, families, children and pregnant women.

Medicare is a government-funded health insurance program that provides coverage for people age 65 or older and younger adults with certain disabilities.

Social Security is a government program that provides benefits to retired workers, people with disabilities and their families

Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), describes himself a democratic socialist and ran for president in 2016 on a democratic socialist platform.

Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), describes himself a democratic socialist and ran for president in 2016 on a democratic socialist platform.

Sanders was born in Brooklyn, New York. He has been elected to many public offices including U.S. Senator from Vermont since 2007 and U.S. Representative from Vermont’s at-large district between 1991 and 2007

A whopping 43 percent of millennials have a positive view of socialism, according to a 2018 YouGov poll.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the survey found that millennials were the most likely to have a positive view of socialism. According to YouGov, 43 percent of millennials said they had a favorable opinion of socialism compared with just 27 percent of baby boomers.

Millennials also seem willing to consider putting their money where their mouths are: According to a 2017 survey from The Atlantic and the Public Religion Research Institute, 36 percent of young Americans would prefer living in a socialist country over a capitalist one. In contrast, only 27 percent of Americans over 50 feel the same way.

You might think you know what socialism is but it is more nuanced than you might think

Socialists and capitalists alike are fond of simplifying their positions for the sake of reducing complex issues to a single word. Capitalism is often defined as a system that relies on private ownership, free markets and competition for personal gain, and socialism is often defined as any government intervention in those areas.

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But this is only one perspective on what socialism actually means. While it’s true that capitalism doesn’t allow state-owned industries or businesses to compete with private ones (and vice versa), capitalism also allows individuals to compete against each other — regardless if they own an industry or not. For example: A shoe salesman might bid higher than you at an auction because he wants that pair of shoes more than you do so he can resell them at a higher price later on down the road; meanwhile, another individual could be bidding lower than both of you because they don’t plan on reselling their purchase but rather enjoy wearing them themselves; finally another person could be bidding exactly what the pair was worth just so they can get rid of some extra money in their pocket… all under the guise of “capitalism.”

Conclusion

To sum it up, socialism is a political and economic theory that advocates public or collective ownership of means of production. Socialists believe that the problems within capitalism can be solved by replacing it with an economic system in which capital and land are owned by the state.

Many people associate socialism with communism, which was a form of government under Joseph Stalin’s rule in Russia in the early 20th century. In short, communism has no private property but all property is owned by everyone collectively; socialism has some degree of private property and the means of production may be privately owned.

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