OPINION: Capitalism versus Socialism in 2021
Fmr. Sen. George Nodland, R-Dickinson, shares his take on capitalism versus socialism in 2021
This past 2020 election has created a great amount of discussion concerning United States becoming a socialistic country instead of a free democracy or capitalistic country it is today. Many people are concerned that President Biden and the democratic control of the House and Senate will push our country into a more socialistic form of government than it has been since the beginning of the country.
I have studied the differences of a socialistic government and a capitalistic government. Socialism is described in the dictionary as “a type of government that the government has ownership and administration of all production and distribution of goods”. Some examples of this are:
-Government planned economy instead of free play for profit economy
-Production and consumer prices are controlled by the government
-Redistribution of income ( tax the wealthy and give to the poor)
-Free public healthcare system for all citizens
-Tuition free public colleges
Capitalism is defined in the dictionary as “a type of government that the individuals own the economic resources and industry and they run the government” (The people have the power). Some examples of this are:
-Free market system (Supply and demand)
-More freedom for consumers and businesses
-Innovation (Freedom for ideas and inventions)
-Opportunity (Everyone has the opportunity to succeed no matter what their social status)
United States was founded on a capitalistic type of government. History shows we have had a more socialistic type of government in the past under two Presidents. President Franklin D. Roosevelt formed the “New Deal” programs during the depression era of the 1930’s to stimulate the economy of the country with various government sponsored programs. President Lyndon B. Johnson formed the “Great Society” programs in 1960’s to end poverty, reduce crime, abolishing inequality, and improving environment. Some of President Franklin Roosevelt’s programs are still in effect today such as SSA (Social Security Act), FHA (Federal Housing Administration), and TVA, (Tennessee Valley Authority).
Israel, India, and the United Kingdom all adopted socialism as an economic model following World War II. All three countries have dropped that model since then as they had excessive inflation, economic, and unemployment issues. All three turned toward capitalism and the free market system. They ran out of people and businesses to tax to pay for the programs. Venezuela is another example of one time in the past, a rich oil booming country, that is today a broke and depressed country due to the socialistic government of Hugo Chavez.
I personally have a concern for the future of my grandchildren if we trend toward socialism. They may not be able to have many choices of employment and business ownership that the past generations had. They may not have the potential for new ideas and inventions as the past generations had. They may not have the discretionary income we have today as they will pay higher taxes for the new government programs being proposed by the Biden administration. I enjoyed the freedom to make my own decisions of employment, private business, purchase my home and raise my family. This is not the government’s responsibility or choice. America believes in freedom for all! My grandchildren need to have the same freedom as my parents, grandparents, and I had!