SOCIALISM: Its place in capitalism

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Words like socialism and communism have been bandied about recently on TV and in newspapers. They are often put in the context of being the opposite of capitalism and being synonymous with each other. The truth is that most modern governments, including the U.S., have elements of each of those concepts. It is also pretty obvious that historical attempts to implement pure systems based on those concepts have yet to work.

The bottom line is that the U.S. is not a purely capitalistic society and that branding an idea as socialism (or communism) should not automatically beg rejection on philosophical grounds. The U.S., sometimes grudgingly, has incorporated programs that are based on socialistic ideas into our government. If you collect Social Security, use Medicare or are assisted by programs for the needy or physically challenged, it would not make much sense for you to reject new ideas just because they are or seem to be “socialistic.” It might be a practical program aimed at a problem or population that needs it.

Like many other issues an understanding of new ideas requires gaining at least an understanding of the practicality and efficacy of the idea.

MORTON KRAUS

Coeur d’Alene

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