reply to post by ninjas4321
Socialism, in it's most basic definition, is the workers ownership of the means of production. But to understand why you have to understand a little
of it's history.
It is an economic system that instead of a private owner, the workers themselves would own the land, machinery etc., cooperatively. Instead of a
private owner organising industry to make profit, it would be organised to meet the needs of the community it serves. Industry should be a service,
not a way to make money from exploitation of labour. Socialism is the answer to scarcity. Capitalism keeps resources artificially scarce,
overproduction means loss of profit. Without the need of profit and expanding markets, we can produce as much as we need.
The confusion comes from the many different ways socialism can be implemented, and that it can work under different political systems, just as
capitalism can. It can be state controlled, or it can be libertarian (anarchist).
Socialism does not automatically mean state control. Anarchism is classically a form of socialism. The Anarchists were the revolutionary socialists,
"Anarchism is stateless socialism", Mikhail Bakunin
Bakunin worked side by side with Marx in the 'International Working Men’s Association' for the ultimate goal of socialism, but they differed in the
path to get there. Marx wanted the political path, with temporary state and nationalism as per the CommieFesto. Bakunin was an Anarchist, a
Collectivist, and wanted direct action, revolution. This got him finally expelled from the IWMA due to Marx himself.
Marx, and movement he lead, took on the term 'communist' simply to distance the movement from the newly rising middle class liberals appropriating the
term socialist. Communists were socialists, as were the anarchists, the Owenites, and other movements of the time.
Ultimately the goal of the all those left-wing movements is free association...
Free association (communism and anarchism)
In the anarchist, Marxist and socialist sense, free association (also called free association of producers or, as Marx often called it, community
of freely associated individuals) is a kind of relation between individuals where there is no state, social class or authority, in a society that has
abolished the private property of means of production. Once private property is abolished, individuals are no longer deprived of access to means of
production so they can freely associate themselves (without social constraint) to produce and reproduce their own conditions of existence and fulfill
their needs and desires.
What happened in Russia, China etc., had nothing to do with these revolutionary movements for worker ownership. They appropriated those terms for
political reasons, not as descriptions of their economic systems.
Socialism was a system of the working class long before the term was appropriated by right wing authoritarian systems. Heavily propagandised to keep
the working class from becoming a solidified power against capitalism, as they had been before WWII. Which accumulated in the Spanish revolution,
where many cities were ran under anarchist principles for two years very successfully. Showing the world it works, and works well. The only problem,
authoritarian systems of private ownership, with the state and it's war machine under it's control. WWII and the decimation of the working
edit on 8/1/2012 by ANOK because: (no reason given)