Both capitalism and socialism have advantages and disadvantages. However, I prefer to live in an economic and political system that affords me opportunities to own and develop personal success. In section 1 of the Virginia Declaration of Rights, it states that all men have certain inherent rights. One of those rights is “the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property”. This is one of the principles of capitalism.
Under a capitalistic society, individuals are responsible for protecting their own interests in the marketplace and within their communities. The potential success of each individual is also valued. People are encouraged to direct their talents in a way that benefits themselves, such as by starting a business or entering a highly profitable profession. Although many argue that this can produce a disproportion between wealthy families and those struggling, I believe that if you work hard and acquire property, you should be able to keep it.
“No man’s goods or estate shall be taken away from him” from the Massachusetts Body of Liberties further solidifies the principle of the economic system of a capitalistic society. In no way would I approve of my property being taken away from me and redistributed to others. I strongly believe that the courage and perseverance the pilgrims demonstrated on their voyage and landing in America is a testament to the liberties our nation was founded on. Moreover, if you work hard, why should you not be rewarded?
Similarly, the political system of a capitalistic society provides us with many freedoms. In the Massachusetts Body of Liberties, it states that “no man’s person shall be restrained or imprisoned by any Authority whatsoever, before the law has sentenced him thereto. ” In other words, you are innocent until proven guilty. What a privilege it is to live in a society that gives us the opportunity to prove our innocence before declaring us guilty of a crime. I can’t imagine living in a society where they believe you are guilty and you have to prove your innocence.
Socialism relies on governmental planning, rather than the marketplace, to distribute resources. While it is usually possible for individuals living in a socialist country to own businesses or offer professional services directly to consumers, they are usually taxed heavily on their profits. Public services are typically numerous and funded by taxpayer money. Citizens are expected to work, but the government provides services such as education, healthcare, and public transportation for free or at very low cost.
Socialist countries also often have extensive social welfare systems to aid the unemployed, disabled, and elderly. This might sound like a great idea; however, you are limited in what you can acquire because you have to share what you have with others. How fair is it for you to work hard and have to provide for others who are not your family? I believe that people in a socialist society become dependent on the government to provide them with even the basic necessities. I prefer to live in a system that does not force me to provide for others.
Socialism means direct control and management of the industries and social services by the workers through a democratic government based on their nationwide economic organization. Under socialism, all authority will originate from the workers, integrally united in Socialist Industrial Unions. In each workplace, the rank and file will elect whatever committees or representatives are needed to facilitate production. Within each shop or office division of a plant, the rank and file will participate directly in formulating and implementing all plans necessary for efficient operations.
In theory, it sounds like a great idea. Nevertheless, in my opinion, this system is flawed because you are handing over power to individuals who might not have the best interests of the people as a priority. Both capitalism and socialism have some strong and weak points. Nevertheless, because of my beliefs and background, I prefer to live in a society that allows me the opportunity to get as far as I can without limiting me. Capitalism provides that avenue for me. Therefore, I believe that it is a good fit.