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Albert Einstein on Capitalism & Socialism

From an article published in the first issue of Monthly Review, in May, 1949, entitled, Why Socialism?, by Albert Einstein. Yes, that Albert Einstein.

“Private capital tends to become concentrated in few hands, partly because of competition among the capitalists, and partly because technological development and the increasing division of labor encourage the formation of larger units of production at the expense of smaller ones. The result of these developments is an oligarchy of private capital the enormous power of which cannot be effectively checked even by a democratically organized political society. This is true since the members of legislative bodies are selected by political parties, largely financed or otherwise influenced by private capitalists who, for all practical purposes, separate the electorate from the legislature. The consequence is that the representatives of the people do not in fact sufficiently protect the interests of the underprivileged sections of the population. Moreover, under existing conditions, private capitalists inevitably control, directly or indirectly, the main sources of information (press, radio, education). It is thus extremely difficult, and indeed in most cases quite impossible, for the individual citizen to come to objective conclusions and to make intelligent use of his political rights.”

Too bad we’ve not made any progress at all in the 62 years since this article was published. Sorry for interrupting your favorite TV show …. go shopping, like Bush told you to do.

2 Comments on “Albert Einstein on Capitalism & Socialism”

  1. #1 Beth
    on Mar 21st, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    Wow. I didn’t know Einstein ever wrote about politics or economics. Or that he was prescient.

    By the way, I like to think that there are still plenty of us out there that prefer a good book to the cacophonous tripe that is network TV. Or shopping for yet more stuff we don’t need.

  2. #2 Kay
    on Mar 28th, 2012 at 10:42 am

    Count me in with Beth. I’m done with both TV watching and shopping for unnecessary things. These words of Einstein’s were indeed prescient.

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