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A Mini Lesson on the Essential Difference Between Socialism and Capitalism

A Mini Lesson on the Essential Difference Between Socialism and Capitalism

Americans tend to have a knee-jerk reaction when it comes to economic systems. Socialism = Bad. Capitalism = Good. Generally speaking, however, we don’t know much about either one. To the rescue, Prof. Richard D. Wolff gives us a mini lesson on an evolving view of the essential difference between socialism and capitalism…

What Is Capitalism & Socialism? What Differentiates Them from Each Other? | Richard D. Wolff

“The distinction between capitalism and other systems should be focused on the relationships in work… With this framework, what is then the distinction between capitalism and socialism?… Socialism is when you… end the relationship of employer and employee… Socialism, in this perspective, is when the workers [democratically] together… decide all the basic decisions of the production world… The Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China [in contrast]… are state forms of capitalism.” ~ Prof. Richard. D. Wolff

Richard D. Wolff is a great proponent of worker-owned enterprises. The following video explores worker-owned-and-directed enterprises:

Shift Change – Putting Democracy to Work

“At a time when many are disillusioned with big banks, big business, and growing inequity in the United States, employee ownership offers real solutions for workers and communities. SHIFT CHANGE visits thriving cooperative businesses in the U.S. and Spain; sharing on-the-ground experiences, lessons, and observations from the worker-owners on the front lines of the new economy.” ~ Shift Change

To catch more lessons from Prof. Richard D. Wolff, visit Democracy at Work.



About The Author

JoAnn Chateau

JoAnn Chateau likes progressive politics and loves the canines. She writes fiction about an alpha Bichon named Chester, and his friends--with a dash of humor and a dab of poli-sci. JoAnn worked professionally in the Psychology and Information Science fields. Retired now, she enjoys the creative life.


  1. paulbern77

    I finally got a chance to view these two videos. This is the wave of the future.

    • JoAnn Chateau

      Glad for your opinion, Paul. Another plus on worker-owned enterprises is that they peacefully coexist alongside capitalism — that is, we don’t need to have a big revolution, or anything.

    • JoAnn Chateau

      Thanks for the reblog, Robert!

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