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Socialism vs Capitalism

I recently saw this post on a friend's Facebook wall and thought this was fascinating and had to copy it down.  I read it very carefully and thought about it.  It makes complete sense, right?  It completely debunks the myth that Socialism works. Well, yes and no.  I thought about an almost identical situation and thought about the difference.  I'll display my friend's post and then my situation.

An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student before, but had recently failed an entire class. That class had insisted that Obama's socialism worked and that no one would be poor and no one would be rich, a great equalizer.
The professor then said, "OK, we will have an experiment in this class on Obama's plan". All grades will be averaged and everyone will receive the same grade so no one will fail and no one will receive an A.... (substituting grades for dollars - something closer to home and more readily understood by all).

After the first test, the grades were averaged and everyone got a B. The students who studied hard were upset and the students who studied little were happy. As the second test rolled around, the students who studied little had studied even less and the ones who studied hard decided they wanted a free ride too so they studied little.. 

The second test average was a D! No one was happy. When the 3rd test rolled around, the average was an F. As the tests proceeded, the scores never increased as bickering, blame and name-calling all resulted in hard feelings and no one would study for the benefit of anyone else. To their great surprise, ALL FAILED and the professor told them that socialism would also ultimately fail because when the reward is great, the effort to succeed is great, but when government takes all the reward away, no one will try or want to succeed. It could not be any simpler than that.

It could not be easier than that.  The story clearly shows the horrors of socialism and how the weak bring down the strong and in the end, we all fail.  So let's take a look at my special education class while attending Manhattan College.   The teacher explained that she graded on a bit of an odd curve, because here tests were very hard.  She graded out of 105 points, not 100.  She added the then added however many points the high score was shy of 100 to the everyone.  She then took the three highest grades of the four exams.  In this system, she explained that everyone had a chance to receive 5 extra points and whatever extra points there were from the high score.  She explained that last year her average was an 81, but it was bumped to an 88 with the points.  Hearing we'd be receiving a B+ made everyone pretty happy.  That was until the first test.  The average score was mid 70's, but there was no bonus, because they high score was a 105.  The following test was harder and the average dipped below 70, with no bonus.  The final test was the hardest and the average was failing, but once again there was no bonus.  On the final day, the teacher explained that more than half the class was averaging in the mid 60's or below.  She explained that only one person was exempt from the final,  The class was breathed a sigh of relief.  She then went on to say that the final was not an actual final, but the fourth test on the newest material.

So all of the sudden this capitalist society, where we all benefit from the hierarchy doing the right thing, had a dilemma.  He could either skip the test and most likely give his classmates an extra 15 points on their exam, which for many would be the difference between an F or D or D or C...or he could test himself to see if he knew the material. Right or wrong, the capitalist did for himself and showed up.  Aced the tests and probably caused a third of the class having to take it again.  The ramifications didn't dawn in him that day.  They never do to a true capitalist.  He didn't just cause six or seven students to fail a class.  He didn't just cause some to possibly lose scholarships or aid.  He didn't only cost them forty five hours of their life.  He cost them money.  He cost them time possibly.  He did so, because he was selfish and he wanted to see that perfect score and he wanted to prove in some selfish way that he was better than them.  Smarter.  Some may still view this as socialist, but it's not, because regardless of how you look at it, you are counting on the top person.  You are hoping their success in some ways trickles down to you. The bottom line is that neither truly works. The only time a system works is when people do these things together.  Could the capitalist have thrown a question here and there, still got his A and passed a little happiness and charity to others?  Of course he could., He could have skipped the final, got an A and everyone would have gained about 7 points on their overall average.  Would this have made him a better person.  That's up to the reader to decide.  

In that silly class on that silly day, the capitalist cost the other 90-95 percent of his class a grade, some money and some financial aid.  On that day, the capitalist felt good about himself,  Proud of HIS achievements and didn't care about the others woes.  He was on top and it's all that mattered.

Today, I feel horrible, because it's not the person I am.


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