Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Italian Economy: Day 1

My professor seems like a hell of a guy - In day one of class, he introduced himself to the six of us (that's it! it's fantastic!) and then got into the course.

Most interesting part of today? He outlined very distinct differences between communism and socialism. They do not seem "correct" to me, at least in my Masonomics paradigm - but I can't put my finger on why. Please help! Write out your definitions of each before you read these...

Communism: A system where the state owns and operates everything - all businesses, etc.

Socialism: A system where there is some state involvement in the economy, but also a good amount of private interactions as well.

To me, his definition of socialism is more of a definition of a mixed economy. He drew the number line, from total free market to no free market, and I was glad he noted that although the US is held as the beacon of market economy, it truly has plenty of gov't involvement. Italy, according to Patania, is moving towards a more market-oriented economy... I believe that.

Am I wrong to be confused by his definitions?

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Compared with the totality of knowledge which is continually utilized in the evolution of a dynamic civilization, the difference between the knowledge that the wisest and that which the most ignorant individual can deliberately employ is comparatively insignificant. ~Fredrich Hayek in The Constitution of Liberty