Saturday, March 25, 2006

Definition of Terms

Readers of this blog have doubtless encountered the word "collectivism" used frequently. In any discussion/debate it is always necessary in order to avoid acrimony to define the terms to be used. Leonidas will therefore attempt to define some of the terms he uses.

Socialism and fascism are both good synonyms for collectivism. My reason for using the term collectivism is the confusion caused in many minds by the terms fascist and communist. Communism is popularly perceived as the opposite of fascism when in fact both are rooted in the mindset of the individual's subservience to the group. In both systems, the economic functions of society are controlled by the state. In communism/socialism most economic functions are owned and managed by the state and in the fascist system the pre revolutionary "capitalists" are left in place nominally but in fact, strictly controlled/regulated (indeed, sometimes co-opted) by the state. Both systems are the opposite of free market laissez faire which loosely translated means "left alone".

For that reason the term "collectivism" is more useful in recognizing the similarities between communist/socialists (the left) and national socialists/nazis (the right). A good antonym for collectivism is individualism; the recognition of the primacy of the individual.

Good sources for additional explanations of this concept are here: and here:



Jeff said...

Nicely done.

Hope said...

There shall be No cookies for you, peanut butter or otherwise.