Capitalism vs Communism Explained
Thriving on Chaos or Control?
(c) 2011 by Tom King
So, you ask, "What's the difference between capitalism and communism. I suspect that whoever asked this question is writing a paper for a poli-sci class and is already half in the bucket for Karl Marx. But I shall indulge the questioner's desire to find source material the good professor can't trace back to Wikipedia.
Simple enough to explain:
DRIVING THE ECONOMY
- Capitalism posits that people should be rewarded for their hard work according to how much others are willing to pay for the product created by that work - that the desire for gain will drive the economy. There are no guarantees under capitalism. You must support yourself, therefore you must produce quality products or services if you want to make a good living and get the goodies.
- Communism posits that all people should be rewarded roughly the same and that if people have no worries about housing, food or medical care, their natural altruism will drive them to do their share to produce quality products, to work hard and to do their best for the greater good.
- Capitalism leaves the economy to market forces, believing that the rewards and risks inherent in business activity are sufficient to create a healthy economy and that a rising tide lifts all boats while downturns are to be expected and provide a control mechanism to eliminate bad businesses and punish bad business practices.
- Communist economies are planned by central planners. The goal of the planned economy is a steady productivity without any downturns, layoffs or business closures. It is always bad for businesses to fail, for if business fails, the planners, by inference have failed.
- Capitalism allows the market to determine prices. Things that are in high demand or are expensive to make command higher prices.
- Communism artificially sets prices regardless of demand and fluctuations in the cost of production.
ROLE OF GOVERNMENT
- Capitalists believe that less government interference and low taxes are best and that the free market is the best way to distribute wealth.
- Communists believe that more government is necessary and that wealth MUST be redistributed through higher taxes on those whose activities produce more income to those whose activities produce less income so that everyone makes roughly the same thing - physicians and butchers, industrialists and janitors. Politicians, however, do always seem to have their privileges for some reason not fully explained by Karl Marx.
- Capitalists believe in voluntary charity.
- Communists believe in entitlements.
- Capitalists own or rent their homes.
- Communists are assigned housing by the state.
- Capitalists shop at discount houses like Wal-Mart, stores, on-line websites and shopping malls that compete to deliver goods people want at the lowest prices. The people purchase those goods each according to their income and select from a wide range of products.
- Communists stand in line at small shops where supplies are rationed and selection is limited. The government tells you how much you can have. You may have to present proof that you have been authorized to buy certain goods and services.
- In pure capitalist countries medical care is expensive and widely available on demand if you can afford it. If you're broke, you just go to the ER and wait in line like they do in communist countries.
- In pure communist countries medical care is free and you must wait your turn to receive it. Often government officials decide whether or not you can receive treatment for any given condition. You may die before you get it, but it's free.
- In capitalist countries, you decide what career you will follow, what business you will take up or how much education you will receive. This results in a diverse workforce of skilled and unskilled labor, professionals, technicians and actors who work part time delivering pizzas or waiting tables.
- In communist countries, the state tests you and decides what sort of work you will do for the state. This prevents too many people from becoming actors and insures low staff turnover in the food services industry.
FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION
- Communists have freedom of speech.
- Capitalists have freedom after speech.
- Capitalist media are owned by businessmen who can say almost anything they want so long as it's not libelous. If they commit libel someone sues them.
- Communists media are owned by the government and can say anything the government tells them to. If they say something they are not authorized to say, they get an expense-paid lengthy vacation in the gulags.
- Capitalist media consider it their duty to catch capitalist politicians in wrong-doing.
- Communist media consider it their duty to catch capitalist politicians in wrong-doing.
- Capitalists adore actors, radio talk show hosts and musicians.
- Communists adore politicians, dead Communist Dictators and, well.......more politicians.
- Capitalists believe that everybody should clean up their own messes.
- Communists believe that everybody else should clean up their messes.
- Capitalists don't think bankrupting the world will save it from global-warming which may or may not be man-made.
- Communists don't think bankrupting the world will save it from global warming either, but it's the best way they can think of to bankrupt the capitalists first.
- Capitalists go to movies, sports events and NASCAR.
- Communists go to parades of tanks and missiles, rallies,speeches and those weird deals where three thousand little girls in tights dance around waving crepe paper streamers on the ends of sticks and singing about the "Dear Leader".
- Capitalists become ballerinas because their mothers made them take dance lessons when they are too young to know better and they found they liked the attention and dressing up in Tu-tus and tights and hope to make lots of money as prima-ballerinas for a New York dance company..
- Communists become ballerinas because they get to leave the country and with luck they can defect and make lots of money as prima-ballerinas for a New York dance company.
Same for the circus.....
I'm just sayin'
Tom King - Puyallup, WA
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