Socialism-is a certain set of beliefs or ideas dealing with human society and its own future state. Socialists have very strong values of equality, social justice, progress, cooperation, personal freedom, and happiness. They believe that the way to achieve this is to end the idea of "private enterprise economy." Socialism can be characterized as "mixed" economy in that on its way to pure communism, the government nationalizes, or takes control, of the major industries of the state. Utilities, communications, transportation, and other major industries are carefully regulated, with profits being used for the common good and general welfare of the population. Western Europe, within the context of a democratic political system (usually parliamentary in nature), operates under this mixed model, providing major services such as transportation and health care, while allowing for capitalization in the form of major corporations and small businesses.
The socialists are classified as either radicals or moderates. Radicals are those who criticize socialist parties and use parliamentary politics along with the revolutionary dictatorship idea. Moderates appeal to the middle class and see socialism as a form of society where full control is given to a group of responsible experts that work in the community's interest.
derived from 19th century socialist beliefs (Croan). It became distinctly
popular after 1917 and the Russian Revolutions.
At this time a group of revolutionary socialists seized power
and renamed themselves the Communist Party of the U.S.S.R.
Hence, the social organization
following the rule of conduct "from each according to his capacity, to each according to his needs" shown forth. Under this "command" system, the government maintains total control of all economic activity. The goal is the establishment of an egalitarian society where there is no differentiation in economic and social class. In order to achieve social perfection, the government makes all the economic decisions: what to produce, how much of it to produce, and for whom a given product or service is offered. The government assigns economic roles, so in an attempt to reduce strife and competition among the population, it removes the element of free will, personal autonomy, and economic decision-making among private individuals and corporations. Under the Stalinist system, much of the Soviet Union's gross domestic product (GDP) was devoted to military production, which led to severe shortages among the general populace. Common consumer goods such as food, toiletries, and other items that make life easier became scarce and led to general unrest. The weight of the military's role in the Soviet economy eventually led to its collapse as the Cold War came to a close across Europe, bringing about the collapse of the Soviet Union and the emergence of NATO and the European Union as military and political-economic forces on the Eurasian continent.
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