I've blogged this before but this is not the right debate, Socialism vs Capitalism because thats like debating. What's a better pet a dog or a car, one's an animal that tends to be used as a pet, another but different member of the family. Another is an automobile thats not even alive and used to get around for the most part. One is an economic system with many different versions of it, including a Socialist version like in Scandinavia. But what Socialism is, its a political philosophy that of course has an economic component to it like all political philosophies. But Socialism is a political philosophy that covers all issues. Economic, political, social, foreign policy, national security and all sorts of issues. Socialism is also a very diverse political philosophy that has all types of different Socialists. From people who I call Paternalists or Statists, people who are fairly close to being Communists but who tend to be Democratic. Thats kinda like the furthest left version of Socialism and then you have Socialist-Liberals or Social-Democrats. People who tend to be more Socialist on economic policy but Liberal-Libertarian on social issues. So this is really not a correct debate to have, because Capitalism and Socialism are two different things.
The real debate should be state ownership or the state owns the means to production to society. Versus private enterprise which is what Capitalism is about and things like property and privacy rights and. So fourth which is a real debate to be having and then we could talk about what type of Capitalist system. Do we want to have and even top talk about the Socialist model when it comes to Capitalism and property rights. Because state-owenership to me at least is not even worth debating. When you look at the countries who had that economic system 20-30 years ago and now look at where they are now. Where they've all adapted some type of a Capitalist system, countries like China, Russia, Brazil and they are all headed towards first world status. Brazil might already be there as we speak, not because they've made their economies more Socialist and given the state more power over the economy and people. But they've Liberalized, love that word as a Liberal, their economies. Even countries like Cuba have adapted a form of Capitalism to go with their Socialist/Communist system and their economy has been improving as well.
The main problems with state-ownership, is the lack of competition, all of the power in the country at least as it relates to the economy. Is in the hands of the national government an organization that doesn't have to produce good services in order to stay in business because it can just print money. Leaving the people with no where else to go if they don't like the service that they are getting other then to leave the. Country which is what we saw in Cuba fifty four years ago. The main advantage of Capitalism again depending on what form you are talking about is the competition. And the ability for people to make the most out of life that they can based on what they put into it. Capitalism of course is not perfect and government needs to serve as a referee to make sure its not taking advantage of the people for profit. And tax enough but no more to meet the needs of the people that Capitalism tends to come up short in providing.
Over the years we haven't seen more countries become more Socialist but more Liberal with their economic policies. With more power and freedom going to the people and less to the state. And this is something that European-Socialists figured out a long time ago and have adapted Capitalism to meet. Their Socialist philosophy and that Capitalism has its flaws so where Capitalism comes up short like in the areas of education. Or infrastructure, the safety net for people who lose their jobs and so fourth and healthcare to a certain extent. We need Socialism to come in and to make up for where Capitalism comes up short.