Difference between Communism and Socialism

Communism is the extreme form of socialism. Nowadays there are several countries with dominant socialist parties, however very few of them can be considered communists. Sometimes, both terms can be confused between each other and used indistinctly. This is incorrect. Both philosophies have their very own particular traces. One of the most important difference is that communism is considered a political system. Socialism, on the other hand is an economical system that can be used along with other political systems, it is adaptable.

Some capitalist countries have laws or governmental programs that were inspired by socialism. Socialism, as unpopular as it might seem, has given a lot to modern politics and economy, as a matter of fact.

Comparison Board

Communism
Socialism
Ideology Everybody is the same. There are no social distinctions. The government must be the owner of every mean of production. Everybody must work along with them and every profit that comes as a result of such work must be distributed equally among everybody. Socialism believes every citizen must have access to basic services and basic products in order to help them grow. Big industries are usually a result of collective work. This is why every profit must be used in such way that it would benefit everyone.
Philosophy Each gives according to its abilities and for each according to its needs. Free access to articles of first need is only possible through technology, which is also supposed to bring abundance for the population. Each gives according to its abilities ad for each according to its contributions. Profits must be equally divided among members of the society or at least among the working force. This would complement worker’s salaries.
Personalities Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, Leon Trotsky. Robert Owen, Pierre Leroux, Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, John Stuart Mill, Albert Einstein, George Bernard Shaw, Thorstein Veblen, Emma Goldman, Etc.
Key points Centralized government, planned economy, proletariat dictatorship, common ownership of the working tools. There is no such thing as private property. There’s also equality between men and women. It usually has an international focus, it tends to be antidemocratic and a one-party system. Economical activities and production are adjusted by the State in order to satisfy both human needs and economical demands. It should only be produced because it is necessary. This means they will only produce what is necessary and useful. Same as for services.
Political system There is no such thing as a State in a communist society. Also, it is governed directly by the people. Of course, it is worth mentioning this is only a theory; it has never been tried. Socialism can coexist with several other political systems. Many support the idea of having a participative democracy. Others, the socio-democrats believe in parliamentary democracies.
Definition Communism is an international system of social organization. It is based in common property on behalf of the community and the State. It rejects free markets and capitalism in any of its forms. Socialism on the other hand is a theory or system of social organization based in common property on behalf of the work force, the workers.
About religion Religion is abolished. Every religion and/or metaphysic belief is undesirable. There is freedom to choose any religion, however secularism is recommended.
About property It is abolished. This concept is not accepted and has been replaced by the concepts of common property and public property. There are two different kinds of properties. The first one is the personal, and it includes everything that belongs to every person. The second kind is the public property; including every big industry and means of production. They belonged to the State under its workers control.
Social structure There are no social distinctions. Social differences are minimized, nearly disappeared.
Political movements Leninism, Trotskyism, Marxism-Leninism, Maoism, Left-communism, and Stalinism. Democratic socialism, communism, social-anarchism.
About discrimination Every member of the community must be treated the same. Everybody is treated the same. Although, there are laws made to protect vulnerable citizens. Immigration is highly restricted.
Examples Cuba, North Korea and USSR are the best examples of communism. The most famous example of a socialist country is the formerly USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics).