The USA's voluntary tax collection means is a socialism program designed to give emergency funds to those in need, funding for K-16, infrastructure spending, military and federal employee pay, social security and healthcare, etc. These social programs benefit everyone involved.
Capitalism provides for the innovation and technology while socialism provides safety nets for all.
Socialism is worker ownership and management of capital. Simple as that. To apply anything else to it is to build a strawman against socialism that almost no socialist advocates.
Socialists are not in favor of a dictatorial government. Unless you come across someone who describes themselves as "Anti-revisionist Marxist-Leninist". Then run. However, stop pretending that Anti-Revisionist ML (Stalinism and Maoism) is the only type of socialism; most socialists consider this type of socialism no better than capitalism.
The vast majority of socialists are Trotskyists, Luxemburgists, Left-Communists and Anarchists. None of them wish for government authoritarian control of the economy. Trotskyists hold the government in a higher position than the other strands I listed, but they still are opposed to dictatorial power. The rest--Luxemburgism, Left-Communism and Anarchism--propose direct democracy. WHAT? DIRECT DEMOCRACY? No, no! I've always been taught socialism is dictatorship! Nooooooooo!
If you want me to give you examples of a non-totalitarian socialist society, well... Revolutionary Catalonia. Revolutionary Aragon. New Lannark. New Harmony. Free Territory of Ukraine. Yugoslavia. Rojava. All were highly, almost completely socialistic, and for the large part free from central government interference. In fact, four of them--Catalonia, Aragon, Ukraine and Rojava--were/are without centralized government.
Strawmanning socialism as central planning, (it's not) dictatorial, (it's not) or of only one specific type (it's CERTAINLY not) is fallacious and wrong.
There are many types of socialism. We already have socialist aspects in our government. For example, Food Stamps, Social Security, free school, police services, Firefighters, postal services, ect. Democratic Socialist care more about the middle class and the people. Full blown socialism is not good, Thats why a mixed economy with capitalism and socialism gives a good healthy balance. By the way communism and socialism are different things.
Socialism would do America a world of good as an object lesson in failure. Four years ought to do it. However, as long as there is a way out, socialism is okay, but the moment the system starts suppressing skilled workers because they are putting in more work for the same amount as everyone else, it's over. Take away my motivation to excel and I'll just put in the nominal effort.
If you want to get very technical about it, you could even argue the military is a socialist "service". If you support social security, then you are a socialist. Don't be afraid of that word though, it doesn't mean you are an extreme socialist, aka a communist. Democratic socialism - assuming we're talking about the government providing "social services" - would benefit this country as it already has in many others in Europe and Scandinavia (and Canada).
Inflation, a very competitive economic system that pushes more and more people down the poverty line every day. Our homeless and unemployed population being relatively high. The problem with America is the government gets our money and says, "I'm just gonna drop this down in the corporations wallets or the military budget." With socialism comes planning and cooperation. We need these things in America.
Socialism destroys all incentive for achieving better things. Equality is unnatural, humans are inherently unequal. Socialism bankrupts governments, destroys economies, and makes everyone's lives equally awful.
The USA is a great country, the last thing it needs is socialism. Socialism will only destroy the great American dream that us Americans live everyday.
Socialism destroys nations. It removes all incentives for anyone to better themselves. Every country that has attempted it has been a failure. Corrupt at the top, miserable at the bottom. And if you'd like human intellectual evolution to advance, nothing promotes invention like capitalism. Pretty much everything falters when individuals have no rewards to look forward to.
I am sitting here and reading every post that people have written on this debate thread. Let me tell you, not a single one of you know even the faintest clue about Socialism. There is one truly Socialist country in the world, and it is North Korea, although they do not classify as Socialist. Socialism erases Capitalism. Everything is government owned. The Nazis were a National Socialist party, and I do not think any of you would have liked to live under their regime. Socialism states that there can be no competition; all aspects of business are government owned; there is no private property; there is an authoritative government (a dictator). First of all, Europe, Scandinavia, and Canada, are not Socialist. They have social programs. Now, I like to believe that anyone who believes in Socialism is an idiot, and I strongly support that claim. You know nothing about economics if you think Socialism is good. Scandinavia is a group of 4 nations amassing to a total population of about 16 million people. These nations include Iceland, Sweden, Norway, and Finland. Sweden currently has a horrible economy as they do not make enough money to support their people. Now why are those nations so liberal? The United States, NATO, and UN have treaties with each nation to defend them if war breaks out. Scandinavia has an almost non existent military. The second we get "Socialist" policies in America, we will lose our economy. We lose 2 trillion each year because companies were pushed away into other nations with lower tax rates. Believe it or not, but the corporate tax is higher in America than it is in Canada.
Let me list reasons as to why Socialism will never work in America:
Replaces the family with the state as the central unit in society
Undermines the family by redistributing its wealth and indoctrinating its children in government schools
Allows legalized theft in the name of redistributing wealth
Encourages sloth instead of productivity
Rewards irresponsibility, laziness, and poor accountability
Encourages self-indulgence instead of self-reliance
Encourages finger pointing and shifting of responsibility to others
Replaces the self-discipline of delayed gratification with the need for instant gratification
Undermines the values that are the foundation of the traditional work ethic (i.E. Thrift, diligence, self-reliance, self-discipline, responsibility, accountability, deferred gratification, and hard work) and replaces them with an entitlement mentality
Treats those who contribute to the betterment of society the same as those who do not, even when they are capable of doing so
Promotes a get-something-for-nothing mentality that undermines the moral character of the individual and society
Robs people of initiative, drive, and ambition
Undermines the spirit of entrepreneurship, innovation, and competitiveness
Promotes totalitarianism, thereby undermining freedom and liberty
Nearly all socialist countries in the world have either failed or converted to a more capitalist society. Most of the nations we now consider socialist are actually social democracies, which have a capitalist economy with some socialist policies. However the few successful SD tend to be very small countries (population wise) and have little internal and external conflict. The US meets none of those criteria. Socialism in the US would end the same way as socialism did in the USSR.
Socialism is basically a word that means "You know all those things you aspired for, all those things you wanted to do? Forget it. START THE TRACTOR!" I mean seriously. Sure, it'd help everyone live a comfortable life, but it would also be a dull monotonous life. And inevitably, like in Russia, it will fail, because of someone really bad getting in power. So no, Socialism should stay out of USA.