I notice a lot that Americans, particularly conservatives, always seem to speak from ignorance in regards to socialism. Socialism in itself is not a bad thing, it is how it is implemented and should be an integral part of many aspects of society, like healthcare and education. It's about moderation. No system is perfect, but if they are used together for the benefit of society, they would work.
I prefer Capitalism due to its ability to generate national wealth rather quickly. If a country wants to add socialist policies and programs onto of a capitalist economic base, like what the Nordic countries do, then that is also fine. But pure socialism has been very inefficient and unsuccessful when compared to any form of capitalism.
@briantheliberal Well we could still consider countries like the US to be capitalist countries, because essentially some socialist policies here and there doesn't take away Capitalism. It can be said about ideologies as well. Many liberals probably have partly conservative views and vice versa. Unless one is some extremist.
@komododragon8 Well any form actually. Each nation is different and thus needs to find their own balance that works best for them. Im sure some nations (Singapore comes to mind but I'm not exactly sure if it fits perfectly) would run rather well under a laissez-faire or complete free market style economy. I don't think such a thing would ever work in the US for obvious reasons, but I find the general benefits of capitalism to be better than the general benefits of socialism.
@briantheliberal Socialism as we know it began during the French revolution, though their were some ancient civilizations (Greece being the earliest known to us) who thought of some very basic socialist aspects. Beyond that, socialism did not come before the development of a monetary system. In fact since the idea of socialism focuses around the state, it couldn't have existed before the development of nation states, which occurred after currency. Unless you are using some abstract version of socialism, in which case I can probably find a form of capitalism that was developed earlier and more widely used.
Capitalism in America cannot be criticized right now because we don't have capitalism. We have corporatism and cronyism that is controlled by lobbyists, special interests, and the federal reserve. We need a genuine free market system.
58539672: I doubt completely free market capitalism would work anywhere. In fact laissez faire and anachro capitalism are considered pseudo economic systems. In these systems the most profitable techniques are the deciding factor and unfortunately the most profitable techniques often involve blatent human rights violations (slavery). Not only that but there is little to prevent monopolies from forming and destroying the very idea of capitalism.
@komododragon8 Well, technically Free Market Capitalism is just as unobtainable of a goal as Communism. But several nations, mainly ones in the Asian-Pacific region, have gotten exceptionally close and have done well for themselves.
It is true that singapore is doing well but it is still not a total free market. For example many companies are linked to the government such as Singapore Airlines. Here is a article from NPR discussing what contributed to Singapores success. (http://www.Npr.Org/2015/03/29/395811510/how-singapore-became-one-of-the-richest-places-on-earth) The article discusses how easy it is to trade and start businesses in Singapore but it also mentions how Lee Kuan Yew provided housing and healthcare leading to social stability. The government also subsidized things such as shipbuilding, electronics, and banking which are currently some of Singapore's largest economic sectors.
@komododragon8 I never said Singapore was a full free market economy, just that they are the closest that I could think of. And they are. No tariffs of any kind, heavy emphasis on free trade, low government expenditures, few corporate regulations, openness to foreign industry, and many of those originally state funded business are now largely privately owned (the state retains some ownership, but this is very lenient and they try not to interfere as much as possible). They are as close to an economic free market as any nation has gotten in a while. Now just because their economy is free doesn't mean the rest of the country is. Several socialist policies are enacted like universal health care and housing, and very strict government regulation on its citizens daily lives along with a near lethal penal system. But their economy is as close to free as we are ever going to see.
58539672: I would agree that Singapore is closer to a free market than any other nation and I certainly would support some of its policies (low tariffs, openess to economic trade) but it pails in comparison to other markets of the past and current black markets when it comes to economic freedom. You did also mention that a free market or laissez faire style economy might work for Singapore in one of your previous posts. Lastly the fact does remain that Singapores healthcare system (one of the best in the world) is regulated to a certain extant and combines government and private factors.
It has good elements, but it won't work if you make a country 100% socialistic. The same goes for any principle. Capitalism will fail in that because competition is expensive so companies will try to reduce it if the government doesn't manage the market.