A recent letter to The Forum pointed out that there is a difference between a socioeconomic system—sometimes described as socialist—as opposed to a corrupt authoritarian political system, which many Conservatives want to associate as one and the same.
Generalizations such as socialism are important to understand, but considering there are nearly 200 countries in the world, all of which are likely to embrace various degrees of socialism or capitalism, it may be hard to know just what we are talking about. For example, The Peoples’s Republic of China, is commonly known as Communist China, a socialist country.
However, the well-known American investor, Warren Buffet, recently referred to China as a quasi-capitalist country. Buffet could have left out “quasi” and simply called China a capitalist country, a combination of private capitalism and, what economists might call, State capitalism.
Whatever the case, many Democratic presidential candidates are calling for better education and health care coverage for our population. Call it socialism if you will, at least one Democratic candidate does; however, it is not a plot to destroy the capitalist system. In fact, look at Amazon’s requirements in locating a major center for their growing business. They sought a location with a very large pool of educated and healthy workers. This requirement suggests that socialism and capitalism can be complimentary; people are a pillar of capitalism. It seems reasonable to acknowledge the positive overlap instead of twisting terms into thoughtless pejoratives, leading us exactly nowhere..