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There was agreement between the two different forms of Socialism in that they both held the same basic beliefs that the government should run all parts of society and that no one group was any more special than another. That is, one person should not be favored over another. Socialists though that everyone was equal, and that is where the communist name of comrade came from instead of using titles such as Mr. or Mrs.
They both believed in the fact that the government should control all business decisions. In economics, there are three main decisions that are to be made: 1. What to produce? , 2. How to produce it? , and 3. For whom should it be produced? In an economy based on socialism, these decisions are solely made by the government.
In other words, the government decides what to make, what process they are going to use to make it, and who they will make the products for. These are basically the only similarities between the two forms of socialism. Now, it is time to take a look at the differences in the views of Utopian Socialism and Scientific Socialism. Utopian Socialism arose in the latter half of the 18 th Century. These socialists viewed the distribution of wealth as unfair.
They believed that the nobles and upper class mistreated the working class. They complained of low wages, bad management and basically all of the conflicts which have risen due to competition, capitalism, and a free market. Utopian Socialists were given this name because the nature of their solution was to basically create a "perfect" society. A society in which the government, nobles, and upper class would give up their titles to live in a classless society where equality was key.
A French man by the name of Pierre Proudhon was in a feud with Karl Marx, and wrote a book called What Is Property? . In it he answered that property was theft, and he had called for an end to private riches. (Heilbroner 153). Utopian Socialists also believed in the "Golden Rule, " that is, do unto others what you would like done to you. There was no room for bitterness towards other people. They were also very patient in the area of getting what they want. They thought that nothing in life happens quickly and easily.
It can be said that they believed in Darwin's "Theory of Evolution, " so to speak. They knew that what they wanted to achieve would come slowly, but surely. They would also never resort to violence in their quest to achieve a perfect society. Then, there are the Scientific Socialists, mainly a German man by the name of Karl Marx and his colleague and companion, Frederick Engels. They believed that the government and upper class could not just give up and create a classless society. He thought that it was going to have to start with the working class.
Marx and Engels believed that the constant struggles of the class system would force the working class into a revolution. The Scientific Socialists were in favor of such a revolution, whereas the Utopians were highly against it. Marx and Engels believed that this revolt would collapse the class system and, in turn, create a perfectly equal society; one in which the government has total control. In The Communist Manifesto, written by Marx and Engels, was a communist program written for the future. It was "a philosophy of history in which a Communist revolution was not only desirable but demonstrably inevitable. " (Heilbroner 138).
It was Marx's and Engles' prediction that no matter what, Communism was bound to take over. The views of Socialism were the complete opposite of the views of Adam Smith, who was for Capitalism. Smith believed that, in an economy, government should have absolutely no control over business. He thought that businesses were free to make their own decisions, set their own prices, and compete at any level.
He believed that there was an "invisible hand" guiding business in the right direction, and that if there were a problem, this "hand" will solve it. Socialists believed that government should have total control over business; they should set prices and decide what to produce. In turn, all forms of competition would be ruled out. This way they figured everyone would be equal.
It is clear to see the similarities of Utopian Socialism and Scientific Socialism. They both believed in a classless society in which all people were completely equal. They both had the same notion that government should control all forms of business. These views totally contradicted the views of Adam Smith and Capitalism. It is also clear to see how very different the two forms of Socialism are. Scientific believed in a revolution by the working class which would then collapse the class system.
Utopians believed that the class system should just be abolished and slowly but surely everything will work out for the better. In either form of Socialism, government had total control.
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