A look at how capitalism dictates production or use in four fields of activity and compares this with how these could be managed in socialism

Fish stocks

Fish provides about a fifth of the animal protein in our diets worldwide. In total it exceeds that of poultry, beef and pork combined. Globally, the marine fishing catch almost doubled between 1975 and 1995 when demand was for 75 million tonnes a year. This is expected to rise to 110 million tonnes in 2010. Overfishing has led to declining yields requiring more intensive fishing methods. In socialism, it may be necessary to make plans to allow the number of fish in the sea to increase. One possibility would be to produce more from fish farming. Democratised versions of capitalist fisheries could transfer some of their workers and equipment to organisations managing fish farms. In 1994, fish caught from the sea accounted for around 72% of the total fish harvest, with only 15% from fish farms, and 13% from freshwater. It would benefit marine ecosystems if our intervention in the seas was reduced, allowing species time to repopulate. With a transfer of emphasis away from marine fishing to fish farming, fish yields could potentially be maintained at sufficiently high levels. The mentality encouraged by capitalism is to strive for profits at the expense of long-term consequences. The warnings raised by the environmentalists and scientists are muffled by the demands of economic exploitation. Following a socialist revolution, the wealth of knowledge and skills held by those who work in the fisheries could be applied to a conservation-based use of sea marine resources. The expertise and technology provided could be acted on, without the constraints of the market.