Socialism vs. Capitalism. The age old debate. Create a form of fiscal and social equality, but restrict the individuals right to prosper; or support the freedom to prosper while creating a social and economic divide? As we know, in the U.S. about 20% of the people control about 80% of the wealth, and 80% of the people control only 20% of the wealth. The disparity between rich and poor in the U.S. is alarming, with fortunes continuing to be made on the backs of the working poor. Modern day land barons, and plantation owners continue to line their pockets with gold while the poor and working class struggle to survive. Our political leaders and corporate executives are millionaires many times over. These are the people dictating, influencing and controlling our lives. Sure, we elect the politicians, but they’re just lapdogs who do the bidding of the corporate conglomerates. Not to mention the international cartel of billionaires who actually run things from the shadows.
I’m a believer in capitalism. It is what enables someone with a good idea, or someone with talent and ambition to achieve his/her dreams. And I don’t believe it should be required that the fruit of ones honest labor be shared equally with those who never had a hand in earning it. But when ambition breeds greed beyond measure it affects all of us disproportionately. When the wealthy prop up the wealthy to become even more wealthy, driving up the cost of goods and services, the fiscal lower and middle classes are forced to work even harder to keep themselves afloat. Insurmountable debt and eventual homelessness are the predictable consequences of such unmitigated greed.
The following plan is based on my belief that in today’s world freedom with limitations is inherently better for society than freedom run amok. I am not a sociologist; business man, educator or economist, but I have devised this plan as a means to restructure the socio-economic makeup of America. I call the concept “Sociatalism” (Pronounced like society). It looks like this.
* No individual in the U.S. may, as an employee or business owner, earn more than one million dollars annual salary. But a business owner may increase his/her income with company profits.
* No company may keep as profit more than the total sum of the wages it pays out to its employees. An individual running a company alone, such as an online business out of the home, will be considered to be an employee and a company, with a one million dollar salary limit.
* Up to an equal amount may be invested back into the business annually towards the growth of the company. This would encourage the growth of business, but restrict the growth of greed. As wages rise, the profit would be allowed to increase. Example: If a company has 20 employees earning an annual salary of 2.5 million dollars collectively, the ‘Keepable Annual Company Profit’ (KACP) would be 2.5 million dollars annually.
This would be income above and beyond the salary of the business owner. An additional 2.5 million dollars may be invested back into the business.
* The business owner(s) could keep this profit, or divide it accordingly among stock holders. This would not be considered salary. The KACP would never exceed the sum total of the companies collective annual salary. If a business owner wishes for a greater KACP he must increase the collective annual employee salary accordingly.
* Any additional profits will go into a National Fund to be divided equally, ½ for Health Care, and ½ for Business and Educational opportunities. The Health Care portion of the fund will be used to provide free health care for any U.S Citizen. The Business and Educational portion of the fund will be used to provide a 4-year education for any Citizen wishing to get a college degree. Those not wishing to avail themselves of the educational opportunity will be given the option of starting a small business, with the funds provided equaling up to the average value of a 4 year college education. This provision would be for anyone wishing to invest in themselves, including artists, farmers etc. Every Citizen will be given this option. Legal immigrants waiting for citizenship would not be excluded.
* No individual would be provided both an education and seed money for a start up business, although an individual granted ‘Business Startup Money’ (BSN) could still pay for his own education, and an individual paying for his own education could still be eligible for ‘business startup money’.
* Companies who earn enough profit to contribute to the National Fund will not be taxed on the portion of their earnings that equals the amount provided to that fund. If the amount provided is less than the annual profit, the remaining portion of the profit will be taxed. If the amount is equal to, or greater than, the annual profit they will not be taxed at all.
In the Capitalist system of Profit Sharing, if the company does well, the employees share in the profits. In the Sociatalism system, if the company is doing well and the business owner wants to take a greater profit, he/she must increase the workers collective annual salary in order to realize increased personal revenue. Profit sharing is inherent in the salary and profit structure. The workers automatically share in the increasing income of the owner. As previously stated, every worker would have the right to earn up to One Million dollars in annual salary.
Sociological Impact of Sociatalism:
- Greater economic equality.
- The proliferation of small businesses to stimulate the economy.
- More motivated and contented workers resulting in increased productivity.
- An educated nation without equal anywhere in the world. Existing tax revenue would be more readily available to schools for the primary and intermediate grades to ensure that anyone hoping to go to college would have the educational skills necessary to achieve that goal.
- Equal access to health care for all Americans.
- Health care, Higher Education and new Business paid for by the people for the people, resulting in a truly ‘citizen controlled democracy’.
- Increased esteem as a Nation of Individuals serving a collective purpose.
- Fewer citizens on welfare and other government programs.
- Taxes could be reduced, and since the governments primary purpose is the protection of it’s citizens, greater tax revenue could be designated for the security of the nation. We could equip and maintain an unprecedented Department of Defense.
- Greater tax revenue would be available for the building and maintenance of a first rate infrastructure (roads, bridges, dams etc.).
- Greater tax revenue would be available for research and generation of new forms of energy and transportation.
- Greater tax revenue would be available for comprehensive and effective Social Service Programs for the disabled and the displaced.
It’s time to change the system. There are smarter, more competent, and more connected individuals than myself who could help instigate change. Maybe not according to this particular plan, but some plan that would allow for socio-economic justice. I submit this one. But it will take some dynamic leadership, and a revolution of the people to initiate it. Not a violent revolution, but an economic one. A boycott of corporate goods and services.
And a political revolution that would give the status quo their walking papers.
It’s a big order, but we all know SOMETHING’S got to be done.