so⋅cial⋅ism /ˈsoʊʃəˌlɪzəm/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [soh-shuh-liz-uhm] Show IPA Pronunciation
–noun 1. a theory or system of social organization that advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, of capital, land, etc., in the community as a whole.
2. procedure or practice in accordance with this theory.
3. (in Marxist theory) the stage following capitalism in the transition of a society to communism, characterized by the imperfect implementation of collectivist principles.
so·cial·ism (sō'shə-lĭz'əm) Pronunciation Key
Any of various theories or systems of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy.
The stage in Marxist-Leninist theory intermediate between capitalism and communism, in which collective ownership of the economy under the dictatorship of the proletariat has not yet been successfully achieved.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2006 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Socialism of the chair [G. katheder socialismus], a term applied about 1872, at first in ridicule, to a group of German political economists who advocated state aid for the betterment of the working classes. Sock \Sock\, v. t. [Perh. shortened fr. sockdolager.] To hurl, drive, or strike violently; -- often with it as an object. [Prov. or Vulgar] --Kipling.
So"cial*ism\, n. [Cf. F. socialisme.] A theory or system of social reform which contemplates a complete reconstruction of society, with a more just and equitable distribution of property and labor. In popular usage, the term is often employed to indicate any lawless, revolutionary social scheme. See Communism, Fourierism, Saint-Simonianism, forms of socialism.
[Socialism] was first applied in England to Owen's theory of social reconstruction, and in France to those also of St. Simon and Fourier . . . The word, however, is used with a great variety of meaning, . . . even by economists and learned critics. The general tendency is to regard as socialistic any interference undertaken by society on behalf of the poor, . . . radical social reform which disturbs the present system of private property . . . The tendency of the present socialism is more and more to ally itself with the most advanced democracy. --Encyc. Brit.
We certainly want a true history of socialism, meaning by that a history of every systematic attempt to provide a new social existence for the mass of the workers. --F. Harrison.
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, © 1996, 1998 MICRA, Inc.
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1. a political theory advocating state ownership of industry
2. an economic system based on state ownership of capital [ant: capitalism]
WordNet® 3.0, © 2006 by Princeton University.
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An economic system in which the production and distribution of goods are controlled substantially by the government rather than by private enterprise, and in which cooperation rather than competition guides economic activity. There are many varieties of socialism. Some socialists tolerate capitalism, as long as the government maintains the dominant influence over the economy; others insist on an abolition of private enterprise. All communists are socialists, but not all socialists are communists.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
–noun (sometimes initial capital letter) an economic system based on the premise that if capital voluntarily surrendered its ownership of the means of production to the state or the workers, unemployment and poverty would be abolished.
fascism : a political philosophy, movement, or regime (as that of the Fascisti) that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition2: a tendency toward or actual exercise of strong autocratic or dictatorial control <early instances of army fascism and brutality. Merriam-Webster
Uji wrote:As to your concern about what "most people" are like -- depending too much on government, etc. I'd just ask: How the heck are you able to know what "most people" think or depend on? Do you have some sort of crystal ball, or do you talk directly to God for the intelligence? Just curious...
Be honest with the people about the economy and what really needs to be done, and stop using fear to drive a socialist agenda.
On June 11, 2009, NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF wrote:This Time, We Won’t Scare
Perhaps you’ve seen those television commercials denouncing health care reform as a plot to create a Canadian-style totalitarian nightmare, and you feel a wee bit scared.
Back in the election campaign, some people spread rumors that Barack Obama might be a secret Muslim conspiring to impose Sharia law on us. That seems unlikely now, but what if he’s a covert Canadian plotting to impose ... health care?
Rick Scott, a former hospital company chief executive, leads a group called Conservatives for Patients’ Rights. He was forced to resign as C.E.O. after his company defrauded the government through overbilling and is now spending his time trying to block meaningful health care reform by terrifying us with commercials of “real-life stories of the victims of government-run health care.”
So here’s a far more representative “real-life story.”
Diane Tucker, 59, is an American lawyer who moved to Vancouver, Canada, in 2006. Like everyone else there, she now pays the equivalent of just $49 a month for health care.
Then one day two years ago, Ms. Tucker was working on her office computer when she noticed that she was having trouble typing with her right hand.
“I realized my hand was numb, so I tried to stand up to shake it out,” she remembered. “But I had trouble standing.”
A colleague called 911, and an ambulance rushed her to the nearest hospital.
“An emergency room doctor met me at the door, and they took me straight upstairs to the CT scan,” she recalled. A neurologist explained that she had suffered a stroke.
Ms. Tucker spent a week at the hospital. “The doctors were great, although there were also a couple of jerks,” she said. “The nursing staff was wonderful.”
Still, there were two patients to a room, and conditions weren’t as opulent as at some American hospitals. “The food was horrible,” she said.
Then again, the price was right. “They never spoke to me about money,” she said. “Not when I checked in, and not when I left.”
Scaremongers emphasize the waits for specialists in Canada, and there’s some truth to the stories. After the stroke, Ms. Tucker needed to make a routine appointment with a neurologist and an ophthalmologist to see if she should drive again. Initially, those appointments would have meant a two- or three-month wait, although in the end she managed to arrange them more quickly.
Ms. Tucker underwent three months of rehabilitation, including physical therapy several times a week. Again there was no charge, no co-payment.
Then, last year, Ms. Tucker fainted while on a visit to San Francisco, and an ambulance rushed her to the nearest hospital. But this was in the United States, so the person meeting her at the emergency room door wasn’t a doctor.
“The first person I saw was a lady with a computer,” she said, “asking me how I intended to pay the bill.” Ms. Tucker did, in fact, have insurance, but she was told she would have to pay herself and seek reimbursement.
Nothing was seriously wrong, and the hospital discharged her after five hours. The bill came to $8,789.29.
Ms. Tucker has since lost her job in the recession, but she says she’s stuck in Canada — because if she goes back to the United States, she will pay a fortune for private health insurance because of her history of a stroke. “I’m trying to find another job here,” she said. “I want to stay here because of medical insurance.”
Another advantage of the Canadian system, she says, is that it emphasizes preventive care. When a friend was diagnosed as being pre-diabetic, he was put in a free two-year program emphasizing an improved diet and lifestyle — and he emerged as no longer being prone to diabetes.
If Ms. Tucker’s story surprises you, you should know that Mr. Scott’s public relations initiative against health reform is led by the same firm that orchestrated the “Swift boat campaign” against Senator John Kerry in 2004. These commercials are just as false, for President Obama is not proposing government-run health care — just a public insurance element in the mix.
No doubt there are some genuine horror stories in Canada, as there are here in the United States.
But the bottom line is that America’s health care system spends nearly twice as much per person as Canada’s (building the wealth of hospital tycoons like Mr. Scott). Yet our infant mortality rate is 40 percent higher than Canada’s, and American mothers are 57 percent more likely to die in childbirth than Canadian ones.
In 1993, the “Harry and Louise” commercials frightened Americans into abandoning health reform. Let’s ensure those scare tactics don’t work this time.
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