I can't answer the question, having lived only under capitalism. It does seem to me that any answers here will be swayed by the politics of the government under which you live.
The problem, as I see it, is people believe their tradition is valid and appropriate, some even assume "everyone does it this way." When people in our country have a very limited exposure to other cultures, and if they grow up in a fundamentalist value system, they have very parochial beliefs. Going away to college often puts cracks in such thinking. Of going to other nations, one sees very different belief systems and sometime question their own traditions. Sadly, far too often, people's opinions become concretized, hard as rock, and blind to seeing any other way and unable to think any other thoughts.
I grew up in a small town and Baptists were right in their beliefs; Methodists thought their version was correct; Roman Catholics had yet another version; a Mormon family held still other beliefs. A little town, split four way. Going away to school, then doing some traveling convinced me they all held on to beliefs based on delusions. I go back and express my thinking that there is no god, life has no meaning, there is no purpose to life, there is no heaven or hell and they think I am insane.
Why should I expect two countries to get along when our little village has chasms?
Michele, thank you; you've added much to this discussion.
I've long said that when Hitler attacked the Soviet Union he committed Germany to suicide. We can say the era's communists saved its capitalists; they did.
American capitalism would have died long ago but for its evolution toward socialism:
1) bailouts by taxpayers after its many recessions and depressions, and
2) laws protecting Americans from its excesses.
Indeed, had America been small-d democratic rather than oligarchic since 1787, we would have less of the dog-eat-dog capitalism we now have.
Corporations DON'T HAVE too much clout to be regulated; they have paid the campaign costs and other expenses of enough politicians.
Rather than be sick and tired of people saying corporations have too much clout to be regulated, be sad that they are saying they feel powerless to change anything.
America has long had an increasing number of employee-owned companies.
It will someday have a national initiative and referendum and more democracy.
"Rather than be sick and tired of people saying corporations have too much clout to be regulated, be sad that they are saying they feel powerless to change anything."
Powerlessness, helplessness, hopelessness are all learned behaviors and can be unlearned. If one person at a time, joins with others to form democratically managed groups, slowly the nation will grow into what it could be and what we prefer it to be.
I haven't been able to figure out how people who have learned to be obedient from childhood can make the shift to entrepreneurial thinking. If we raise our children to be not only independent but interdependent, they develop the brain connections that last them all their lives. They can take charge of ideas and develop them.
So, what will happen to all those dependent people or all those who bully their way through conflict?
Can enough employee-owned companies even get started when rules and regulations favor BIG agriculture, food distribution, and box stores?
"...are all learned behaviors and can be unlearned."
Can be; sometimes are not. Younger people find the changes easier to make.
"I haven't been able to figure out how people who have learned to be obedient from childhood can make the shift to entrepreneurial thinking."
In my two-year-younger brother's case, some youthful gangsterism helped. He did more of both than I.
"...what will happen to all those dependent people or all those who bully their way through conflict?"
During years in senior organizations I've met some very dependent seniors and some very bullying seniors. I've been most intrigued by a few who want dictatorial leaders and when denied, become dictatorial.
"Can enough employee-owned companies even get started...?"
I've seen references to a federal tax law that since the 1970s has given breaks to entrepreneurs who, when they retire, sell their businesses to their employees. I haven't seen the law itself.
According to a recent PBS program, during labor negotiations some managements threaten to close and move. Unions have caved. Sometimes unions have not caved; they bought the closed plants, re-opened them as employee-operated, and the employees' experience helps them succeed.
Idealism does not go away easily.
"Are we more frightened by communism than need to be?"
During the USSR v. USA Cold War I heard this: "It's not their people versus our people. Nor is it their military versus our military. It's their paranoids versus our paranoids."
More likely I think, it was their testosterone-charged people versus our testosterone-charged people. There were exceptions: England's Margaret Thatcher for one.
"...injections of socialism into a capitalist soceity works fine. As we had until the 1980s."
It's now, and since 1787 has been, "Privatize the profits; socialize the losses."
Neither is better. Both are harmful. Money itself is a curse.
Gail, what do you suggest we use in place of money?
I have called the concept the gift economy, however you could call it what you want.
It doesn't involve barter. It involves cooperation and respect. We each pursue our interests and improve our skills, which we then, because we are naturally social and empathic people, share with our communities or humanity at large.
If money were thrown out, there are things that we would all still want. I happen to like electricity and indoor plumbing. If I were younger, I would volunteer time to work in the power/water/sewer plants. But as I am older, there is still much that I can do to contribute.
Think about how many go to work to jobs they hate. One thing I have learned about retirement is that my life is as busy as it ever was, but life is full doing things I enjoy doing. It is far less stressful and way more satisfying. In my circle, my retired friends all have interesting lives. They don't just sit around all day doing nothing.
People I have talked to about a gift economy wonder what to do about people who will not contribute - who only take. If the people are prepared to take over their own government before they stop using money (a few months), they will see that contributing to your society is not only rewarding, but is productive. The fear that causes takers to take without giving (that is part of the great insanity that is currently pervasive) will lessen or disappear when it is socially understood that we are powerful beings, able to manifest our individual needs. Who would discover that they are so powerful and then refuse to use that power?
I look forward to reading the book you suggested: Mutual Aid.
Edit: According to The Heritage Foundation (a conservative think tank), the annual cost of subsidies to agribusinesses is 25 BILLION per year.
In addition to capitalism being averse to forcing people to buy a product, it is also averse to preventing people from buying a product (like marijuana or new corvairs etc).