The government-economic model runs in a spectrum from complete governmental control to no governmental control. Unlike politics, this is closer to a true spectrum, with few exceptions.
At the extreme
left, the state controls all aspects of the economy. There is no way to separate
the two, since the government controls all goods and services. From each individual's
salary to the car that they drive (or the type of transportation that they use) to the food that they eat. There is no real way for the individual to improve his or her lot in life, unless it is deemed necessary
by the state.
socialism is more open. While many goods and services are regulated, there is
more economic freedom. The individual has more choices of goods and services. Instead of the government allotting bread and cabbages, the individual can choose
what food they buy (or receive) or what they use for transportation. This system
also typically cares for those who are unable to take care of themselves. While
there is more room for personal and financial growth, many of the common needs and services are pre-paid in the form of high
In an anarchistic
economy, each person contributes what they are able to for the welfare of the common society.
There are no ruling bodies, such as a government or board of directors, to dictate who gets what. Each person contributes what they can, and they all share the wealth of the group.
is based on the ideal that each person earns according to his or her worth, rather than based on his or her need. By worth, I mean the contribution that an individual is able to make to society. Those who are skilled in labor contribute to the production of goods, while those skilled in service contribute
to the welfare and well-being of society. (Those who are neither become lawyers.) There is always opportunity to move out of the class that a person is born into, and
ones position in society can change as their skills change. Free enterprise is regulated and assisted by the governing body, buy the government doesn't control
business. With a little time and money, and enough ambition, anyone can become
a business owner if they so desire.
On the far
right is the free-market economy. The government takes a hands-off approach to
business and enterprise. The economy is driven by businesses, without any checks
in place for the rights of the workers. Those who run the businesses control
the wages and the prices. The citizens who can't contribute (for whatever reason)
are ignored by the economy, since they are outside of the system. While there
is endless opportunity for those with ambition to carve out their own piece of the economic pie, Murphys Golden Rule is absolute. "He who has the Gold makes the Rules."
economic systems fall toward the middle of that spectrum. They are a blend of
the systems, utilizing the most effective parts to fit the needs of the populace. or the government. The former Soviet Union attempted Communism, but that experiment failed when the centralized economy (and
government) collapsed. China has been moving toward capitalism since then, taking
a lesson from the reason why communism failed under the Soviets. (It wasnt Reagan's
doing. He took credit for the collapse of communism, but it fell under its own
In the US,
the increase of large corporations that are growing unchecked, driven by greed and the desire for control, has proven almost
as disastrous as the centralization of the economy and government in the USSR. The
mega-corporations are collapsing under their own weight, and bringing down millions of workers. Since the collapse of Enron (followed by the fall of other giants), billions of dollars (one billion looks
like this: 1,000,000,000) have been lost by investors and workers whose retirement
accounts were tied into those corporations. Huge companies are laying off employees
by the thousands, displacing the middle-class and working-class poor. The institutions
that have been built up on the dreams of the workers have fallen and crushed the builders.
And the few
who wiped out the future of millions of people are walking away as billionaires.