The Peace and Freedom Party, born from the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 1960s, is committed to socialism, democracy, ecology, feminism, racial equality, and internationalism.

The opening sentence of the Party platform has provoked questions such as, “Why are you for so-cialism?” or “What is socialism?” The answer is not simple, because the Peace and Freedom Party is a ‘multi-tendency’ party.” People from different organizations, as well as those without other affiliation, can be members of the Peace and Freedom Party.

We asked members of the PFP to provide their definition of socialism, both to answer the question and to illustrate the range of opinions within the party and the Socialist movement in general. Below runs the sixth and final (for now) short essay in our series, “What is Socialism?”


Socialism is an economic system in which the whole society owns all of the major industries, natural resources, and financial institutions. A socialist economy is run democratically, unlike a capitalist system in which a few rich owners make the decisions. In a socialist society everyone is an equal member and takes part in making the decisions that any society needs to make. The goal of a socialist society is for the workers to receive the full payment for their work, and for everyone to have a decent, rewarding life.

We are socialists because we see the problems that capitalism creates, and we believe they cannot be fixed without replacing capitalism with a better system that is not guided by greed and is not founded on exploitation. Socialism, with its emphasis on cooperation and equality, is that system.

–written by John Reiger

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