Considering the current global economic crisis, it would be nice if students could become more conversant with economic terminology, even if it’s only the basics.
Until that happens, however, here are some handy tips from Yelp.com on how to remember the difference between competing political/economic ideologies:
SOCIALISM: You have two cows. The government takes them and puts them in a barn with everyone else’s cows. You have to take care of all the cows. The government gives you a glass of milk.
FASCISM: You have two cows. The government takes both, hires you to take care of them, and sells you the milk.
TOTALITARIANISM: You have two cows. The government takes them and denies they ever existed. Milk is banned.
COMMUNISM: You share two cows with your neighbors. You and your neighbors bicker about who has the most “ability” and who has the most “need.” Meanwhile, no one works, no one gets any milk, and the cows drop dead of starvation.
DICTATORSHIP: You have two cows. The government takes both and drafts you.
DEMOCRACY: You have two cows. Your neighbors decide who gets the milk.
LIBERTARIANISM: You have two cows. One has actually read the constitution, believes in it, and has some really good ideas about government. The cow runs for office, and while most people agree that the cow is the best candidate, nobody except the other cow votes for her because they think it would be “throwing their vote away.”
BUREAUCRACY: You have two cows. At first the government regulates what you can feed them and when you can milk them. Then it pays you not to milk them. Then it takes both, shoots one, milks the other and pours the milk down the drain. Then it requires you to fill out forms accounting for the missing cows.
CAPITALISM: You don’t have any cows. The bank will not lend you money to buy cows, because you don’t have any cows to put up as collateral.
ANARCHY: You have two cows. Either you sell the milk fair price or your neighbors try to take the cows and kill you.
ENVIRONMENTALISM: You have two cows. The government bans you from milking or killing them.
SURREALISM: You have two giraffes. The government requires you to take harmonica lessons.