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Day 25 – Q 2. Although proponents of the same philosophy of socialism, the social democrats and the communists had different approaches to implementing socialism. Elucidate.

2. Although proponents of the same philosophy of socialism, the social democrats and the communists had different approaches to implementing socialism. Elucidate.    

यद्यपि दोनों समाजवाद के समान दर्शन के समर्थक हैं लेकिन सामाजिक लोकतंत्र और कम्युनिस्टों का समाजवाद को लागू करने के लिए अलगअलग दृष्टिकोण था। स्पष्ट करें।


Democratic socialism describes a socialist economy where production and wealth are collectively owned, but the country has a democratic system of government.

Communism is an Economic and social system in which all property and resources are collectively owned by a classless society and not by individual citizens.


Social democrats approaches to implementing socialism.

  • Democratic socialism is committed to more liberty. The most disadvantaged and the wretched individuals must be lifted from their ignoble condition and this can be done by the state. Democratic socialism says that the doors of liberty shall be opened to all and not to few. It is loudly claimed by the democratic socialists that allowance of scope to everyone for the enjoyment of liberty will finally open the way for overall participation in the processes of state. This we can call maximization of liberty.
  • Every democratic socialist claims that equality is a very important value or principle.  In a socialist society based on democratic values and principles everyone will have the opportunity to enjoy equality. In other words, unjustified or unreasonable differences cannot be allowed to rule the society. Equality also means the absence of special privileges.
  • It is the goal of democratic socialism to bring the chief sources of production under the authority of state and to give due share to labour.
  • Since democratic socialism falls in the category of evolutionary socialism it avoids in all probable ways the techniques of armed struggle or revolution. In its account force or coercion is associated with revolution and, therefore, it should not be used. There are many peaceful ways which can be applied for “reaching the goals of socialism. Moreover, coercion means the abduction of freedom of the individuals and such course of action is to be avoided at any cost.
  • The most important peaceful way is the reforms. The democratic socialists want to build up socialism within the main structure of capitalism and because of this they argue for introducing reforms. They believe that if reforms are successfully implemented they can produce the results which revolutionary socialism promises to bring forth.
  • Economic planning, introduced to streamline production and distribution in a planned way, is an important method of democratic socialism. The management of production and the distribution of produced commodities is performed through planning. Planning in democratic socialist state plays a very crucial role. Because of planning the management of economy proceeds in a definite and scientific way and this assures the attainment of promised goals, especially the proper distribution of wealth, and in this way the reduction of inequalities is possible.

Communists approaches to implementing socialism.

  • Communist Manifesto includes Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes, A heavy progressive or graduated income tax, Abolition of all right of inheritance, Confiscation of the property of all immigrants and rebels, Equal liability of all to labor and establishment of industrial armies (especially for agriculture), The gradual abolition of the distinction between town and country, Free education for all children in public schools and abolition of children’s factory labor, Centralization of credit in the hands of the state, The state would control communication and transportation, The state factories and instruments of production would cultivate wastelands and improve the soil etc.
  • The manifesto mentions state ownership, which makes even this pure vision of communism sound like socialism. But the state ownership is a valid stage in the transition to communism. In a true communist economy, the community makes decisions; in most communist countries, the government makes those decisions on their behalf. This system is called a command economy.
  • The leaders create a plan that outlines their choices, and it’s executed with laws, regulations, and directives. The goal of the plan is to give to “each according to his need.” Communist countries have free health care, education, and other services. The plan also seeks to increase the nation’s economic growth, secure national defense, and maintain infrastructure.
  • The state owns businesses on behalf of the workers, which, in effect, means the government owns a monopoly. The government rewards company managers for meeting the targets detailed in the plan. In communism, central planners replace the forces of competition and the laws of supply and demand that operate in a market economy, as well as the customs that guide a traditional economy.
  • Communism has a centrally planned economy; it can quickly mobilize economic resources on a large scale, execute massive projects, and create industrial power. It can move so effectively because it overrides individual self-interest and subjugates the welfare of the general population to achieve critical social goals. Communist command economies can wholly transform societies to conform to the planner’s vision.


Communism is what existed in the Soviet Union and still exists in China, Cuba, Laos, North Korea and Vietnam. It isn’t monolithic, but the common thread is a fully centralized economy achieved through revolution. At the other end is social democracy, which is common in Europe. It preserves capitalism, but with stricter regulations and government programs to distribute resources more evenly.

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