Capitalism vs. Socialism

By Williams, Walter | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, June 1, 2018 | Go to article overview

Capitalism vs. Socialism


Williams, Walter, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


Several recent polls, plus the popularity of Sen. Bernie Sanders, demonstrate that young people prefer socialism to free market capitalism. That, I believe, is a result of their ignorance and indoctrination during their school years. For the most part, neither they nor many of their teachers and professors know what free market capitalism is.

Free market capitalism, wherein there is peaceful voluntary exchange, is morally superior to any other economic system. Why? Let’s start with my initial premise. All of us own ourselves. I am my private property, and you are yours. Murder, rape, theft and the initiation of violence are immoral because they violate self-ownership. Similarly, the forcible use of one person to serve the purposes of another person, for any reason, is immoral because it violates self-ownership.

Tragically, much of the federal budget can be described as Congress taking the rightful earnings of one American to give to another American — such as farm subsidies, business bailouts, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, food stamps and welfare.

Free market capitalism is disfavored by many Americans — and threatened — not because of its failure but, ironically, because of its success. Free market capitalism in America has been so successful in eliminating the traditional problems of mankind — such as disease, pestilence, hunger and gross poverty — that all other human problems appear both unbearable and inexcusable. The desire by many Americans to eliminate these so-called unbearable and inexcusable problems has led to the call for socialism. That call includes equality of income, sex and race balance, affordable housing and medical care.

Let’s compare capitalism with socialism by answering the following questions: In which areas of our lives do we find the greatest satisfaction, and in which do we find the greatest dissatisfaction? …

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