Capitalism or Socialism, Which Is Better & Why?
True, traditional capitalism is actually one of the most fair, compassionate systems in modern history that we can examine. Capitalism is generally a good thing when it is motivated by profit and people vote with money. In America, that is what we really built everything on – trying to figure out what the public will pay for and then provide that good or service. It is a genuine system that works.
Today, however, we have a version of capitalism that has become rather corrupt. And now many millennials are facing the question of whether communism or socialism might be better options for them. What do you think? I’m personally a fairly open-minded person. But in the grand scheme of things we have to think about more than just ourselves to come up with something that works. We’ll go into this a little more later in this article.
Democracy is based on the vote of the people. Ben Franklin once proposed, however, what do two wolves and a sheep vote on what to eat for dinner? In modern day comparison, what do the 1% and banks vote on to protect? Themselves of the poor masses?
Admission into the 1% requires an income of about $300,000. That’s it. That’s a high-paying degree job, some quarterly, high-yield dividend stocks, a couple rental units and maybe a small side business. Note a huge feat to accomplish. But why then are so many people NOT part of the 1%? Ben Franklin also said that knowledge pays the best dividend. Perhaps most people don’t know how to make money, which has always been odd to me being a native American.
America holds 46% of the entire world’s wealth. We have owned this much wealth since WWII. So it would seem that there is plenty to go around. But for some reason, all that wealth has been held mostly by the infamous 1%. Why?
Riches Beget Riches
When you have a bunch of money in the bank or the stock market, the bank and the stock market rewards you with more money. When you do not, you don’t make as much. And some are even charged for not having enough (think about overdraft fees). Biblically, this is a lot like the fig tree that does not produce anything. That which does not produce anything will be cut down.
In my personal opinion, at least for the time being and the immediate future, those who produce will always be better off than those who do not. An example of people who do not produce might be a wage worker. To an extent, workers DO produce things, but often they are only providing the grunt labor to facilitate the vision of the company and its board. This, too, is a spiritual lesson, for God says “My people are destroyed for their lack of knowledge.” And He says again, “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.”
Therefore, the workers, who do not know and have no vision, perish and are destroyed. This does not excuse some parts of our system, however, who engage in “cronie capitalism,” which is largely motivated by greed in conjunction with nepotism. These are those deals where lobbyists try to convince through legislation that people must buy their products or services.
In Michael Moore’s documentary “Capitalism: A Love Story” he gave an example where a juvenile detention center (a private one) made secret deals with judges in order to keep its facility full of children, and then make huge profits from it. In fact, the judge who helped the cronies made nearly $3,000,000 from the deals. This is not capitalism – this is cronie capitalism, a major difference. This is what you might call an unfair advantage at the expense of innocent people, and worse in this particular case, innocent children who did not really commit any serious crimes.
The Roman Empire was sometimes referred to as a republic, and other times referred to as an empire. Its rulers, like in most societies, ended up being the rich super class rather than its senate. Here again, the top 1% ended up owning everything, including power over the nation.
Why In Every Society Do The Few End Up Owning All?
For the same reason of the fig tree and interest, exponential growth follows those who are already rich. The “deciding moment” is when they already have everything – what do they do with it then? You can’t take money with you when you die, which means that they either have the choice to keep wealth in their families or give it to the people – this may be in the form of money or in the form of some kind of infrastructure which advances society in some way. The ladder is more beneficial for everybody, in my opinion. However, social Darwinism tends to take precedence and the wealth ends up remaining in the hands of the families, typically to earn even more the next generation. This happened in every society since Rome, and perhaps even before.
And just as riches beget more riches, greed often begets more greed. I don’t believe it is right for governments to forcefully make rich people distribute their wealth, however. That is against liberty and freedom. I do believe, however, that everything starts with a strong family unit. A good, Christian foundation in the family is probably what will determine the best outcomes of the people when regarding the rich. We were not put here to acquire wealth. We were put here to love one another. If loving one another requires wealth, then so be it. But one thing is for sure – it does not require greed.