California State University Capitalism vs Communism Analysis Essay


1.) Carnegie says that the “problem of our age” is the proper administration of wealth. What is he talking about?

2.) Carnegie says that the socialist is to be regarded as attacking the foundations upon which civilization lies. What examples does he give to support this claim? Do you agree?

3.)From the short video on Carnegie, what does the presenter say how Carnegie believed concentrated money ought to be dealt with? And how is giving to philanthropic organizations different from charity?

4.) Smith says that it is not from the benevolence of the butcher, brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from what? What is he getting at?

5.) What does Smith mean when he speaks of an “invisible hand”?

6.) Carnegie and Smith are capitalists. Carnegie argues that Capitalism reflects Social Darwinism and is the correct way to distribute, while Smith argues similarly that attempts to control distribution are unneeded: people acting out of self-interest bring about the best possible scenario. Discuss their respective positions.

7.) According to Marx, what happens when there is a rise in the value of things?

8.) Marx states that one of the first tasks of the communists is abolish private property. What happens when we supersede property? This contradicts the capitalist’s fundamental idea that humans are entitled to property in land. Who do you agree with, Marx or the capitalist? Explain.

9.) Another move on the part of the communists is to abolish “rights to inheritance”. Why would they want to do such a thing? Do you agree with this or not? Explain.

10.) Marx depicts the life of the worker in capitalism in a very dark light. Do you agree with his depiction? Are workers in capitalism alienated? Why or why not?

11.) The driving principle behind communism is the idea of equality. Are we equal? Is it a good idea to try and distribute equally? Discuss.

12.) The driving principle behind capitalism is merit; that is, people get what they work for. Do you agree? Are people where they are at in society because they earned their place? Or is it luck? Fate? Consider this in light of the fact that people are born into either wealth or poverty.

13.) In the video link on Marx, what are listed as the 5 problems with capitalism?

14.) In your opinion, what is the main point/value of these readings?


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