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Socialism refers to a broad array of ideologies and political movements with the goal of a socio-economic system in which property and the distribution of wealth are subject to control by the community. This control may be either direct—exercised through popular collectives such as workers' councils—or indirect—exercised on behalf of the people by the state. As an economic system, socialism is often characterized by state, worker, or community ownership of the means of production, goals which have been attributed to, and claimed by, a number of political parties and governments throughout history. For Karl Marx, who helped establish and define the modern socialist movement, socialism would be the socioeconomic system that arises after the proletarian revolution, in which the means of production are owned collectively. This society would then progress into communism.
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Christian socialism generally refers to those on the Christian left whose politics are both Christian and socialist and who see these two things as being interconnected. This category can include Liberation theology and the doctrine of the social gospel. Christian socialists draw parallels between what some have characterized as the egalitarian and anti-establishment message of Jesus, who — according to Christian Gospel — spoke against the religious authorities of his time, and the egalitarian, anti-establishment, and sometimes anti-clerical message of most contemporary socialisms. Some Christian Socialists have gone as far as to become active Communists. (more...)
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The economic anarchy of capitalist society as it exists today is, in my opinion, the real source of the evil... I am convinced there is only one way to eliminate these grave evils, namely through the establishment of a socialist economy, accompanied by an educational system which would be oriented toward social goals.

Albert Einstein, "Why Socialism?", May 1949

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Photo credit: Scott Ehardt

A demonstration by members of the Confederación Nacional del Trabajo protesting "employer terrorism" by Mercadona.

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