Contending with Socialism – an Individualistic Account

How this system of economic administration differs from capitalism (along with other popular administrative systems) Since the popular publication of Marx and Engels writings on communism, there has remained widespread interest both in academic circles and among the popular masses regarding the lived political manifestations of a socialist order. Many political parties today (both in the West and the East) continue to strive democratically for the establishment of socialism as a governance and economic redistribution mechanism – matters that can be studied in great detail online through an affordable Spectrum Plans subscription.

Addressing Socialism

Socialism, in a nutshell, envisages a communal order of governance in which the very ‘means of production’ (the initial manufacturers/dispensers of goods & services), as well as their varying mechanism of attainment and distribution by all manner of consumers, are owned by the society as a whole – and not by a greedy & profiteering class of individuals bent on monopolizing these fundamental resources.

A socialist order (which would ideally encompass the entire world to yield its full societal impact)would envisage:

  • A collective and classless ownership of all production avenues
  • The disintegration of all national and other political borders – which seek to separate individuals on account of different ideological conceptions
  • State nationalization (in which all people are afforded an impartial democratic say in the direct administration of state entities)
  • The dissolution of currency and private property – people take what they need without hoarding (so that everyone gets an equal cut)
  • An end to poverty, unemployment, and class warfare, as their causative factors (class systems, economic inequality, ideological contentions) would have been abolished
  • Individuals choosing to act in the better interests of the whole, and not just their private motivations
  • The planet being a haven and productive resource for everyone without any discrimination

These pointers are only meant to provide a concise account of the primary concerns that socialism stands for – and are in no way indicative of its narrower experiential tendencies (as they are seen to persist in those societies where the said system is said to thrive).

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Allaying Public Fears

Due to the instigations of capitalist politicians, many of whom are generally on the pay-rolls of large multinational corporations interested in maintaining the economic status-quo (and keeping their profit quotas intact), a large segment of the public demographic in virtually all countries has come to uphold an abiding suspicion of socialism.

The greatest public fear with regard to socialism persists in the form of people’s anxieties related to the question of private property in a socialist order. But this concern is largely ill-founded, because in a socialist commune, individuals would have the right (on merit) to wield exactly the types of infrastructural, living and entertaining facilities as the work they tend to put in for the betterment of their collectives.

Any inequalities accrued as a result of people working on what they’re naturally more adept at, with others lagging behind their allegedly more gifted peers, would be compensated for automatically by shifting this other category to those ventures that they are particularly more proficient in executing. This reasoning is based on the understanding that ‘everyone is good for something’, which is a fair principle to apply in virtually all sociological settings.

On the Question of Religion

Another concern that is often voiced by people concerns the question of their religion in a socialist society – and whether they would be allowed to practice.

Although the very basis of socialism hinges on the idea of a classless society (with religion seen as a historical means of imposing divides people on account of their passionate beliefs), a socialist order would not in any way seek to force people to conform to a secular faith-framework.

The only condition, however, demanded by such a society would involve requiring people not to conduct long evangelizing spells to convert more people to their religious cause; to prevent such a gathering from becoming a future threat to a classless global community.

The Historical Cases of the Soviet Union & China

When it comes to the historical cases of the now-dissolved Soviet Union & China, it is important to set the record on socialism straight with regard to them.These societies, it is crucial to recognize, only represented an authoritarian perversion of socialism (something which is still true in the case of China).

In these states, populist leaders envisaged the establishment of a vanguard political party – which claimed to represent the aspirations of the working classes, but in actuality only sought to consolidate the hold of a few over the many.

As has already been surmised above, socialism deems any such class stratifications abhorrent to its cause – so such a neat delineation between the ‘haves and have nots’ in and of power would not be possible in its implemented systems.

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