This web page is to explain the reason for the use of the term "Liberal Social Democratic"
, as viewed at 20150909:0145, socialism is defined as
Socialism is a social and economic system characterised by social ownership of the means of production and co-operative management of the economy, as well as a political theory and movement that aims at the establishment of such a system. "Social ownership" may refer to cooperative enterprises, common ownership, state ownership (achieved by nationalization), citizen ownership of equity, or any combination of these. There are many varieties of socialism and there is no single definition encapsulating all of them.
and that article further states
A socialist economy is based on the principle of production for use, to directly satisfy economic demand and human needs, and objects are valued by their use-value, as opposed to the principle of production for profit and accumulation of capital. In the traditional conception of a socialist economy, coordination, accounting and valuation are performed in kind (using physical quantities), by a common physical magnitude, or by a direct measure of labour-time in place of financial calculation. For distributing output, two alternative principles have been proposed: to each according to his contribution and from each according to his ability, to each according to his need. The advisability, feasibility and exact way of allocating and valuing resources are the subjects of the socialist calculation debate.
The socialist political movement includes a diverse array of political philosophies. Core dichotomies include reformism versus revolutionary socialism, and state socialism versus libertarian socialism. While all tendencies of socialism consider themselves democratic, the term "democratic socialism" is often used to highlight its advocates' high value for democratic processes and political systems and usually to draw contrast to other socialist tendencies they may perceive to be undemocratic. The varieties of socialism differ in the type of social ownership they advocate, the degree to which they rely on markets or planning, how management is to be organised within productive institutions, and the role of the state in constructing socialism. Today, some socialists have adopted the causes of other social movements, such as environmentalism, feminism and liberalism.
Modern socialism originated from an 18th-century intellectual and working-class political movement that criticised the effects of industrialisation and private property on society. The revival of republicanism in the American Revolution of 1776 and the revival ofegalitarianism in the French Revolution of 1789 converged into the rise of socialism as a distinct political movement by the turn of the century. Initially, "socialism" referred to general concern for the social problems of capitalism regardless of the solutions to those problems. However, by the late 19th century, after waves of revolutionary movements, "socialism" had come to signify opposition to capitalism and advocacy for a post-capitalist system based on some form of social ownership. During this time, German philosopher Karl Marx and his collaborator Friedrich Engels published works criticising the utopian aspects of contemporary socialist trends, and applied a materialist understanding of socialism as a phase of development which will come about through social revolution instigated by escalating and conflicting class relationships within capitalism. Within this surge of opposition to capitalism appeared other more or less complementary tendencies such as anarchism, communism, and social democracy and later, the confluence of socialism with anti-imperialist and anti-racist struggles around the world.
Socialism became the most influential worldwide movement and political-economic world view of the 20th century. Some anarchist, socialist and Marxist tendencies argue that the Soviet Union did not establish socialism, but rather established state capitalism. Socialist parties and ideas remain a political force with varying degrees of power and influence in all continents, leading national governments in many countries.
“ For Andrew Vincent "The word ‘socialism’ finds its root in the Latin sociare, which means to combine or to share. The related, more technical term in Roman and then medieval law was societas. This latter word could mean companionship and fellowship as well as the more legalistic idea of a consensual contract between freemen." The term "socialism" was created by Henri de Saint-Simon, one of the founders of what would later be labelled "utopian socialism". The term "socialism" was created to contrast against the liberal doctrine of "individualism", which stressed that people act or should act as if they are in isolation from one another. The original socialists condemned liberal individualism as failing to address social concerns of poverty, social oppression, and gross inequality of wealth. They viewed liberal individualism as degenerating society into supporting selfish egoism that harmed community life through promoting a society based on competition. They presented socialism as an alternative to liberal individualism, that advocated a society based on cooperation. The term socialism is attributed to Pierre Leroux, and to Marie Roch Louis Reybaud in France; and in Britain to Robert Owen in 1827, father of the cooperative movement.
The modern definition and usage of the term "socialism" settled by the 1860s, becoming the predominant term among the earlier associated words "co-operative", "mutualist" and "associationist". The term "communism" also fell out of use during this period, despite earlier distinctions between socialism and communism from the 1840s. An early distinction between "socialism" and "communism" was that the former aimed to only socialise production while the latter aimed to socialise both production and consumption. However, by 1888 the term "socialism" was used by Marxists in place of "communism", which was now considered an old-fashion synonym of "socialism". It wasn't until 1917 after the Bolshevik revolution that "socialism" came to refer to a distinct stage between capitalism and communism, introduced by Vladimir Lenin as a means to defend the Bolshevik seizure of power against traditional Marxist criticisms that Russia was not sufficiently developed for socialist revolution.
Socialist models and ideas espousing common or public ownership have existed since antiquity. It has been claimed, though controversially, that there were elements of socialist thought in the politics of classical Greek philosophers Plato and Aristotle. Mazdak, a Persian communal proto-socialist, instituted communal possessions and advocated the public good. In the period right after the French Revolution, activists and theorists likeFrançois-Noël Babeuf, Étienne-Gabriel Morelly, Filippo Buonarroti, and Auguste Blanqui influenced the early French labour and socialist movements. In Britain, Thomas Paine proposed a detailed plan to tax property owners to pay for the needs of the poor in Agrarian Justice while Charles Hall wrote The Effects of Civilization on the People in European States, denouncing capitalism´s effects on the poor of his time which influenced the utopian schemes of Thomas Spence. The first "self-conscious socialist movements developed in the 1820s and 1830s. The Owenites, Saint-Simonians and Fourierists provided a series of coherent analyses and interpretations of society. They also, especially in the case of the Owenites, overlapped with a number of other working-class movements like the Chartists in the United Kingdom." The Chartists gathered significant numbers around the People’s Charter of 1838, which demanded the extension of suffrage to all male adults. Leaders in the movement also called for a more equitable distribution of income and better living conditions for the working classes. "The very first trade unions and consumers’ cooperative societies also emerged in the hinterland of the Chartist movement, as a way of bolstering the fight for these demands." A later important socialist thinker in France was Pierre Joseph Proudhon who proposed his philosophy of mutualism in which "everyone had an equal claim, either alone or as part of a small cooperative, to possess and use land and other resources as needed to make a living". There were also currents inspired by dissident Christianity of Christian socialism "often in Britain and then usually coming out of left liberal politics and a romantic anti-industrialism" which produced theorists such as Edward Bellamy, Frederick Denison Maurice and Charles Kingsley. The first advocates of socialism favoured social levelling in order to create a meritocratic or technocratic society based on individual talent. Count Henri de Saint-Simon is regarded as the first individual to coin the term socialism. Saint-Simon was fascinated by the enormous potential of science and technology and advocated a socialist society that would eliminate the disorderly aspects of capitalism and would be based on equal opportunities.[unreliable source?] He advocated the creation of a society in which each person was ranked according to his or her capacities and rewarded according to his or her work. The key focus of Saint-Simon's socialism was on administrative efficiency and industrialism, and a belief that science was the key to progress. This was accompanied by a desire to implement a rationally organised economy based on planning and geared towards large-scale scientific and material progress, and thus embodied a desire for a more directed or planned economy. Other early socialist thinkers, such as Thomas Hodgkin and Charles Hall, based their ideas on David Ricardo's economic theories. They reasoned that the equilibrium value of commodities approximated prices charged by the producer when those commodities were in elastic supply, and that these producer prices corresponded to the embodied labour – the cost of the labour (essentially the wages paid) that was required to produce the commodities. The Ricardian socialists viewed profit, interest and rent as deductions from this exchange-value.
West European social critics, including Robert Owen, Charles Fourier, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, Louis Blanc, Charles Hall and Saint-Simon, were the first modern socialists who criticised the excessive poverty and inequality of the Industrial Revolution. They advocated reform, with some such as Robert Owen advocating the transformation of society to small communities without private property. Robert Owen's contribution to modern socialism was his understanding that actions and characteristics of individuals were largely determined by the social environment they were raised in and exposed to. On the other hand, Charles Fourier advocated phalansteres which were communities that respected individual desires (including sexual preferences), affinities and creativity and saw that work has to be made enjoyable for people. The ideas of Owen and Fourier were tried in practice in numerous intentional communities around Europe and the American continent in the mid-19th century.
Linguistically, the contemporary connotation of the words socialism and communism accorded with the adherents' and opponents' cultural attitude towards religion. In Christian Europe, of the two, communism was believed the atheist way of life. In Protestant England, the word communism was too culturally and aurally close to the Roman Catholic communion rite, hence English atheists denoted themselves socialists. Friedrich Engels argued that in 1848, at the time when the Communist Manifesto was published, "socialism was respectable on the continent, while communism was not." The Owenites in England and the Fourierists in France were considered "respectable" socialists, while working-class movements that "proclaimed the necessity of total social change" denoted themselves communists. This latter branch of socialism produced the communist work of Étienne Cabet in France and Wilhelm Weitling in Germany. The British moral philosopher John Stuart Mill also came to advocate a form of economic socialism within a liberal context. In later editions of his Principles of Political Economy (1848), Mill would argue that "as far as economic theory was concerned, there is nothing in principle in economic theory that precludes an economic order based on socialist policies." While democrats looked to the Revolutions of 1848 as a democratic revolution, which in the long run ensured liberty, equality, and fraternity, Marxists denounced 1848 as a betrayal of working-class ideals by a bourgeoisie indifferent to the legitimate demands of the proletariat.
The Paris Commune was a government that briefly ruled Paris from 18 March (more formally, from 28 March) to 28 May 1871. The Commune was the result of an uprising in Paris after France was defeated in the Franco-Prussian War. The Commune elections held on 26 March elected a Commune council of 92 members, one member for each 20,000 residents. Despite internal differences, the Council began to organise the public services essential for a city of two million residents. It also reached a consensus on certain policies that tended towards a progressive, secular, and highly-democratic social democracy. Because the Commune was only able to meet on fewer than 60 days in all, only a few decrees were actually implemented. These included the separation of church and state, the remission of rents owed for the entire period of the siege (during which, payment had been suspended), the abolition of night work in the hundreds of Paris bakeries, the granting of pensions to the unmarried companions and children of National Guards killed on active service; the free return, by the city pawnshops, of all workmen's tools and household items valued up to 20 francs, pledged during the siege. The Commune was concerned that skilled workers had been forced to pawn their tools during the war; the postponement of commercial debt obligations, and the abolition of interest on the debts; and the right of employees to take over and run an enterprise if it were deserted by its owner; the Commune, nonetheless, recognised the previous owner's right to compensation.
And, at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Socialist_Movement is
The WSM defines socialism in its classical formulation as a "system of society based upon the common ownership and democratic control of the means and instruments for producing and distributing wealth by and in the interest of the community". Socialism is characterized as a stateless, propertyless, post-monetary economy based on calculation in kind, a free association of producers (workplace democracy) and free access to goods and services produced solely for use and not for exchange.
I do not seek “social ownership” of the means of production, to the exclusion of private ownership of means of production, and so, pure socialism is not what I seek. I believe that, should a person, or, a group of people, want to own a business that produces and supplies legitimate goods and/or services, they should be freely allowed to do that.
, Social Democracy is defined thus;
Social democracy is a political ideology that supports economic and social interventions to promote social justice within the framework of a capitalist economy, and a policy regime involving welfare state provisions, collective bargaining arrangements, regulation of the economy in the general interest, redistribution of income and wealth, and a commitment to representative democracy. Social democracy aims to create the conditions for capitalism to lead to greater egalitarian, democratic and solidaristic outcomes. "Social democracy" is often used in this manner to refer to the social and economic policies prominent in Western and Northern Europe during the latter half of the 20th century. Alternatively, social democracy is defined as a political ideology that advocates a peaceful, evolutionary transition of society from capitalism to socialism using established political processes.
and that article further has
Contemporary social democracy emerged in the post-war era. In this period, social democrats embraced the idea of reforming capitalism and, at least in practice, rejected the goal of replacing capitalism with socialism. Social democracy embraced a mixed economy based on the predominance of private property, with only a small number of utilities and essential public services under public ownership. In this period, social democracy became associated with Keynesian economics, state interventionism and the welfare state and abandoned the goal of replacing the capitalist system of private property, market-based allocation and wage labor with a qualitatively different socialisteconomic system.
Modern social democracy favors constitutional forms of government and representative democracy under the rule of law, the promotion of democratic decision-making beyond political democracy to include economic democracy to guarantee employees and other economic stakeholders sufficient rights of co-determination and support for a mixed economy that opposes the excesses of capitalism such as inequality, poverty, and oppression of underprivileged groups. Social democractic policy favors universally-accessible public services such as education, health care, workers' compensation, child care and care for the elderly. Social democracy is strongly connected with the trade union labour movement and supports collective bargaining rights for workers. Social democracy originated in 19th century Germany from the influence of both the internationalist revolutionary socialism advanced by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels and the reformist socialism of Ferdinand Lassalle. The Marxists and Lassallians were in rivalry over political influence in the movement until 1868–1869 when Marxism became the official basis of Social Democratic Workers' Party of Germany. In the Hague Congress of 1872, Marx made a remark, admitting that while there are countries "where the workers can attain their goal by peaceful means" in most countries on the Continent "the lever of our revolution must be force".
Influenced by the Fabians and Marxism, the German Social Democratic politician Eduard Bernstein advocated a peaceful and evolutionary transition of the economy to socialism through progressive social reform of capitalism. Bernstein opposed classical andorthodox Marxisms' assumption of the necessity of socialist revolution and class conflict, claiming that socialism could be achieved via representative democracy and cooperation between people regardless of class. Social democracy in the early 20th century began to transition away from association with Marxism towards liberal socialism, particularly through the influence of figures like Carlo Rosselli who sought to disassociate socialism from the legacy of Marxism. By the post-World War II period, most social democrats in Europe had abandoned their ideological connection to Marxism and shifted their emphasis toward social policy reform in place of transition from capitalism to socialism. The Third Way is a major faction in social democratic parties that developed in the 1990s, that has claimed to be social democratic though others have identified it as being effectively a neoliberal movement.
And at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_Democratic_Party_(Australia) as viewed on 20150909, was
The Social Democratic Party (SDP) was a minor centre-left Australian political party active from 1980 to 1983. Formed in 1980, it drew inspiration from the citizen-based social democratic parties of Western Europe in Switzerland, Germany and Sweden, as distinct from trade union controlled labour parties in Britain, Australia and New Zealand. It advocated more democracy in society such as citizen initiated referenda, workers elected onto the board of large companies to reduce strikes and overpayment of directors, and harmony between trade unions and big business. The party unsuccessfully contested the 1983 Australian federal election and then supported the new Prime Minister, Bob Hawke, a social democrat, hoping for political reform. The SDP was based on a booklet called "Progress Without Poverty and Conflict" by Ted Roach.
This party proposal is based on the Social Democratic Party of Australia, and the publication written by Ted Roach, on which publication, that party is said to be based. This party proposal uses that party and its manifesto as written by Ted Roach, as a starting point.
In that publication by Ted Roach, dated 1980, is the following;
Australia must become a social democracy to reach the Point Of Progress Without Poverty And Conflict. Policies of the Social Democrats are determined democratically by the members of the party.
The following social democratic policies should be immediately introduced into Australia.
1. Industrial Democracy
Introduce industrial democracy where workers would be represented on the board of directors in companies and government organisation (sic) with more than thirty employees.
(a) Personal income tax to be reduced to increase incentive.
(b) Indirect taxes to be increased on goods and services not deemed essential. On essential goods and services, e.g. purchasing own home, food, transport, clothes etc., there should be no taxes.
(c) A wealth tax where 2% of the wealth of an individual over, say $200,000 is added to their personal income for taxation purposes.
(d) Capital Gains Tax – Capital gains should be considered income over the period of the capital gain, except on essential investments, e.g. person's own home.
(e) No personal tax on incomes up to 1.1 times the poverty level. This poverty level varies depending on the dependents (sic) of the wage earner. Poverty levels have to be adjusted every three months.
3. Rights to Referenda
Allow citizens with signatures from 0.5% of the population to instigate referenda on any issue. Once passed, the result of the referendum could only be altered by another referendum.
4. Research and Development
Encourage the tripling of expenditure per worker on research and development in order to create jobs and bring this expenditure in line with other social democratic countries.
5. Freedom of information Act
Introduce an act similar to other social democracies so that citizens have access to government information.
6. National superannuation scheme
Introduce a national superannuation scheme to ensure that retired workers receive 50% of the average weekly wage. This is universally implemented in the social democracies of Western Europe.
Introduce a national health scheme.
8. School children
A nutritious meal should be provided for all children at school. An immediate priority should be given to those schools presently classified as 'disadvantaged'.
9. Trade unions
Encourage the amalgamation of trade unions as has occurred in other social democratic countries, e.g. West Germany has less than twenty unions.
A uniform education system should be introduced throughout Australia. Each school would have a school board. The school board would be democratically elected and comprise:
(a) One-third teachers and/or their representatives,
(b) One-third parents and students and/or their representatives with at least two students,
(c) One-third representatives from the Education Department.
Introduce a national newspaper with an independent board of directors including worker representation.
12. Above poverty level incomes for all
Monetry (sic) remuneration to raise all incomes above the 'poverty level'. Those individuals or families not capable of looking after themselves are to receive this welfare in the form of food, clothes, accommodation, etc. by the government or approved groups.
Other policies are formed democratically by the party as the need arises.
It should be remembered that that publication is dated 1980, about 35 years before this web site (and this proposal for a new political party) was created, and, some of the proposals in that publication policy statement, have been implemented, and some of the figures (for example, "A wealth tax where 2% of the wealth of an individual over, say $200,000 is added to their personal income for taxation purposes.") are now outdated, as, as in the example given, the amount of $200,000, is now less than the value of a low-range family home.
Social democracy appears to be defined as a system that operates within a capitalist system, while providing social justice and democracy, which sounds good. But, with “ social democracy is defined as a political ideology that advocates a peaceful, evolutionary transition of society from capitalism to socialism using established political processes”, we still have the intent and objective, to work toward exclusive “social ownership” of all property and the means of production. So, that does not quite appear to be what I seek.
Contemporary social democracy emerged in the post-war era. In this period, social democrats embraced the idea of reforming capitalism and, at least in practice, rejected the goal of replacing capitalism with socialism. Social democracy embraced a mixed economy based on the predominance of private property, with only a small number of utilities and essential public services under public ownership. In this period, social democracy became associated with Keynesian economics, state interventionism and the welfare state and abandoned the goal of replacing the capitalist system of private property, market-based allocation and wage labor with a qualitatively different socialist economic system.
which appears to be better, and, closer to what I seek.
, Liberal Socialism is defind thus;
Liberal socialism is a socialist political philosophy that includes liberal principles within it. Liberal socialism does not have the goal of abolishing capitalism with a socialist economy; instead, it supports a mixed economy that includes both public and private property in capital goods.
and that article further has
Although liberal socialism unequivocally favors a mixed market economy, it identifies legalistic and artificial monopolies to be the fault ofcapitalism and opposes an entirely unregulated economy. It considers both liberty and equality to be compatible and mutually dependent on each other. Principles that can be described as "liberal socialist" have been based upon or developed by the following philosophers: John Stuart Mill, Eduard Bernstein, John Dewey, Carlo Rosselli, Norberto Bobbio, and Chantal Mouffe. Other important liberal socialist figures include Guido Calogero, Piero Gobetti, Leonard Trelawny Hobhouse, John Maynard Keynes, and R. H. Tawney. Liberal socialism has been particularly prominent in British and Italian politics.
This sounds good, but does not refer to goals relating to democracy.
In the part about social democracy, is that social democracy involves “ a commitment to representative democracy”, and “Modern social democracy favors constitutional forms of government and representative democracy under the rule of law“, but also includes “ the promotion of democratic decision-making beyond political democracy to include economic democracy to guarantee employees and other economic stakeholders sufficient rights of co-determination”.
Now, whilst I believe in constitutional representative democracy, subject to the rule of law, I believe that decisions involving the operation of a business, should be made by the owners of the business. If the owners of a business, are a co-operative, of the employees of the business, then, fair enough, that they should be entitled to participate in the decision-making applicable to the business. However, if a person or a group of people, that are not necessarily inclusive of, or, wholly consisting of, the employees of the business, are responsible for the operation of the business, then those people, and, only those people, should make the decisions of the operation of the business (unless they have delegated specific decision-making, to particular employees of the business).
So, I believe that an appropriate ideology, is a combination of (the best of) the above, and, modified, to suit the times (such as dealing with issues such as intellectual property and the Internet and World Wide Web), and that an appropriate name for such a combined ideology, should be Liberal Social Democracy.
This web page is authorised and published by Bret Busby, 2 Pelham Street, Armadale.
I can be contacted by email by clicking on the link at Bret
This web page was last updated on 30 April, 2016.