The facts about Mixed Economic Systems | Private Enterprise

Mixed Economic Systems

No real-world economic system is purely capitalist, communist, or socialist. Economic systems today are mixed. A mixed economy is a blend of private enterprise, government ownership, and government planning.

For example, there are at least three major models of capitalism: the Japanese, the German, and the American. The Japanese model combines free enterprise and fierce domestic competition with strategic direction by the government. Government attempts to control foreign trade, for instance, and decides which industries or products should have their development funded by the government. The German model is a successful free-market economy alongside a far-reaching welfare state. The American model is the purest form of capitalism, which is a relative statement. A completely free market is a myth

In fact, the term capitalism is less appropriate in describing the American system than it was a hundred years ago. The Great Depression of the 1930s caused

widespread poverty. This led many Americans to question their belief in laissez-faire capitalism. As a result, the government began to play a bigger role in the economy. Unemployment benefits and the Social Security program were established, and laws were passed to limit what businesses could do.

Socialism also means different things in different countries. For example, when the Labour Party is in power. Great Britain’s government is called a socialist government. But it is far less socialist than the governments typically in power in Sweden and Denmark. In some countries socialism is enforced by the army. Iraq is an example.

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