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The Relations Between Capitalism and Socialism Essay

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Updated: Jan 13th, 2022

Human beings can decide and shape their destiny to match their preferred choices and styles in life. Society creates most of its survival and existence by the interactions among human beings that result in the fulfilment and attainment of their goals. People have various advanced ways through which they can meet and satisfy their daily needs and expectations. This essay aims at outlining the various ways in which Karl Marx analysed capitalism and how it contributed to the rise of Socialism for creating a better society.

Karl Marx was a famous sociologist and philosopher who concentrated most of his works on analysing society in terms of economics, politics and religions. He is considered the father of modern community issues due to his influence on the study of sociology that gives great reference to most of his work. He defined capitalism as a system where a few people own and control the greatest percentage of the world capital and thus the whole economy through ownership of the production and supply processes of essential goods and services (Simon, p. 34). This means that the main factors of production which include land, labour, capital and entrepreneurship are in the possession and controlled by a few individuals in the society, while the majority of the population do not own anything. On the other hand, Marx defined socialism as a principle that ensures the most of these production factors are owned and controlled by the society or the state for the benefit of the whole community without a special reference to a particular group of people.

According to Marx, society is characterised by constant conflicts between those who control the main factors of production (capitalists) and those who offer their services to realize the accomplishment of the production process (proletarians). Marx noted that through capitalism, the society became disintegrated by the above classes, and tensions were always high as the poor struggled to get basic needs, while the rich tried to gain maximum profits from exploiting their workers and raising prices of commodities. The struggle was fuelled further when the rich tried to maintain their grip on controlling the economy, while the poor fought to attain financial stability (Simon, p. 55). However, the lower classes suffered the most since they had no land to produce food as their salaries were too low to buy land or invest in any business activity, and they had limited access to information.

According to Mar, capitalism is a self-inflicted pain on the beneficiary as it is controlled by stiff competition by producers to gain huge markets for their businesses, to maximise the sales and get high profits. This competition makes the capitalists produce more which in turn leads to the saturation of the market by their products as the demand remains constant. As this competition takes place, the consumer is neglected in terms of the quality and quantity of goods or services supplied (Simon, p. 78). The resultant effect involves huge losses as production becomes too expensive to sustain, and the capitalists are left with no choice but to strike a balance among them or exit the production process.

However, Marx noted that while capitalism played a major role in enhancing the suffering of the proletarians, it created room for their emancipation and the transformation of the society to communism. The many steps that capitalism had established were the very basis on which communism was built. Capitalism was based on the economic dominance of resources like land (Simon, p. 34). A few individuals who owned land were in charge of food supplies and provision of housing facilities that were the basic human needs of the majority of the population. They earned profits in terms of selling foods to the rest of the society and charges from the houses rented to the poor. These were charged depending on their wishes, and it was either a person paying for them or the perishes. This was eventually changed as private land ownership and payment of rents were abolished, and the state took control of it as all property inheritance was stopped. Marx advocated for people to be paid according to their efforts, abilities and the amount of output and hours spent in the workplace.

Education was offered in a few private schools as a privilege to the elite class that wanted to ensure that its children got the necessary knowledge to help their parents in the future continues controlling the means of production. On the other hand, children from poor backgrounds were left at home or accompanied by their parents to search for jobs on farms and industries as it was very expensive to afford fees for the schools available (Simon 108). However, this was later changed as the state established public schools that offered free education to everybody interested in learning. The systems and curriculums of education were harmonised and regulated to ensure the teaching process followed the stipulated guidelines. The labour market was streamlined, and all workers got equal liabilities and benefits. Eventually, the establishment of labour laws and movements that advocated for improved working conditions, better salaries and work leaves became inevitable. The industrial courts were set up to ensure all complaints and rights of the workers were addressed (Simon, p. 97). The consumers, on the other hand, became protected as human health became an issue of concern, and the emphasis was laid on the quality of goods and services produced and not the quantity supplied. Communication tools became centralised and involved rather the community than individuals. The necessary information was communicated to the whole population concerning development plans and the policies that the state wanted to be implemented. These in turn kept the people in touch with the outside world and enlightened them further. Capitalism also involved the control of power by the few individuals who had the economic and intellectual abilities to rule. Through this, they controlled the labour system by deciding on the amount of payment for workers, the location of their houses and the regulation of prices of goods (Simon, p. 108). This was, however, overturned by demonstrations and rebellion by the poor people who discovered that they were oppressed and, therefore, sought ways out of such a situation. This became evident when regimes were overthrown by civilians, and industries were closed due to workers’ strikes since this was the only way through which the poor got access to better services.

However, despite Marx’s brilliant ideas that theorized the society according to a very balanced and successful approach, it is practically impossible for any society to attain full communism as he predicted. People have different skills and abilities that determine how wealthy or poor the person will be. Delegation of economic ownership to the state involves less productivity as responsibilities and accountabilities are controlled by corruption and ethnicity. On the other hand, it should be noted that to some extent, communism has enabled many countries to get rid of despotic leadership and evoked the ability to stand for our rights concerning the efforts we put in any production process. It has also helped portray society as being in a transitional stage characterised by conflicts between the poor and rich.

Works Cited

Simon, Lawrence H. Karl Marx, Selected Writings. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing The company,1994.Print.

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