What are the primary differences between socialism, democratic socialism and social democracy? Are they simply three branches of a the same ideology?

Primarily in theory, but if you can give any examples of how they have been implemented in practice that would be helpful

  • 5
    The problem with these terms is that they have vastly different meanings to different people, depending on location and political orientation. – user11249 May 25 '17 at 12:41
  • To overcome the subjectivity problem, you may want to edit it this question to be what would a conservative and a progressive say the differences are between these groups of thought. – K Dog May 25 '17 at 13:46
  • Have you rfeviewed the relevant definitions (at least, Wikipedia) and if so, what details are you missing? – user4012 May 25 '17 at 13:47
  • Unless this question is reframed to state a given contemporary critic --or critics if you want to break it down into more questions--like how would a Beard on the left or a Jaffa or Strauss on the right view these terms-- I don't know how you handle this question. Even then it would be exceeding difficult. Voting to close – K Dog May 25 '17 at 14:33
  • 1
    @KDog we're not here to critique every political concept from multiple partisan standpoints, as that wouldn't be a Q/A site. That'd be a political debate site. – user1530 May 25 '17 at 15:51

Socialist - Abolishment of private property, all property belongs to the state except personal property, this may vary in some socialist nations such as Britain but general principle. Government is a primary competitor and provides all welfare and essential services, though depending on the country may also allow private competitors in these areas.

Democratic Socialist - Private Property stays private. Welfare programs are entirely managed by the government along with CRITICAL services, commonly seen as healthcare, retirement programs, etc.

Social Democrat - Government is a competitor not sole provider for Critical services and should offer them. Welfare is given by the government though private businesses may provide the service, but the service will be offered, i.e. Government pays PECO to give you electricity.

Along with the strictness of the system comes higher taxation and necessity for income redistribution and additional government oversight.

As far as ideology goes they are on the same track, they just break down more and more into the role of the government in the lives of its people and the extent that the means of production must be seized.

In general there are many types of Socialism as an ideological concept http://www.philosophybasics.com/branch_socialism.html - includes the history of socialism with descriptions of each of the systems and conflicting views

What I describe as a Socialist is adherent to Libertarian Socialism

As for Social Democrat describes as the gradual transition from Socialism to Capitalism https://www.britannica.com/topic/social-democracy

  • 5
    I would assume you got downvoted because this answer reads like your personal opinion. To back it up, you might want to reference it with some proper citations from the political theorists who coined these terms. – Philipp May 25 '17 at 14:10
  • 1
    I didn't down vote or suggest that you weren't objective to the extent that anyone can be. I just wouldn't want to get a definition of Socialism from Marx, Chavez or the NYTs for that matter. It would much rather it come from say Buckley or Jaffa. Or at least an acknowledgement of the contrast between these two groups of thought. – K Dog May 25 '17 at 14:22
  • 4
    "socialist States such as Britain": what?! – Steve Melnikoff May 25 '17 at 15:28
  • 2
    @SCFi: my query isn't about "state", which is certainly suitable here; it's about labelling the UK as "socialist" - especially since it's had a centre-right or right-wing government for the last 7 years (and possibly the next 5). – Steve Melnikoff May 25 '17 at 15:44
  • 1
    This is a fine answer, but so are the comments, which I think only shows that these terms mean different things in different context and aren't easily definable generically. – user1530 May 25 '17 at 15:54

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .