Farid A. Khavari, PH.D. economist, author of “Environomics”
Zero Cost equals Wealth
Comparing Socialism and Capitalism with Carefreeism (Zero-Cost Economy) Click here to view animated graphic presentation
01 Employment
  Employment figures include hidden unemployment; a minimum existence is guaranteed.   To maintain the same standard of living, people must work more hours; also, they are subject to losing their jobs and income.   Working hours will decrease once a desired standard of living is achieved. Hidden unemployment and lack of employment disappear.
02 Energy
  Shortages occur; energy is cost-attached and its supply is unsecured.   Regulated through price and cost increases; always cost-attached; unsecured supplies; contributes to a decline in purchasing power.   FREE, abundant, and secured, contributing to increased purchasing power even with stagnating incomes due to lack of cost.
03 Home ownership
  State owns the majority of homes; private home ownership is not available to most people.   Most people supposedly own their homes, but attached costs (such as interest, property taxes, and long-term financing) make true ownership dubious.   True home ownership exists with no costs attached once the mortgage is paid off. Ownership is achieved more quickly and at a lower cost due to zero-interest financing.
04 Businesses
  Most big businesses are owned fully or partly by the state to create jobs and employment for masses of people; small businesses are in a minority.   Most big businesses are controlled by elite capitalists whose primary goal is to maximize profits; small businesses create the majority of jobs and employment; profit-maximizing overwhelms and controls other goals and the economy overall.   Primary goal of any business is to help achieve a zero-cost (carefree) economy that serves the economic and environmental interests of the people and nation; ethical profit replaces profit maximizing.
05 Insurance
  Except for free nationalized healthcare insurance, other insurance must be paid for.   All insurance must be paid for; premiums keep rising to an unaffordable level.   Universal insurance policy at an affordable premium covers health care, car, life, natural disaster, theft, and flood.
06 Health care
  Free but associated with a relatively low quality and long waiting times for specialized treatments.   Expensive; large segment of the population lacks any or adequate coverage; increasing costs make healthcare services unaffordable.   High-quality services are provided at relatively low cost due to manipulation of productivity, including technologies and efficient service delivery facilities. Preventive medicine, physical fitness and proper nutrition.
07 Education
  Practically free from kindergarten through the university level.   Free from kindergarten through high school; university-level education is very expensive.   Free from kindergarten through the university level. Graduation in multiple disciplines is encouraged through financial and job incentives.
08 Interest
  Relatively low rates.   Rates change from low to very high, virtually reaching extortion level; subprime loans are permitted.   Rates, if any, are very low; ultimate goal is to eliminate interest altogether. Subprime loans are outlawed.
09 Taxes
  Relatively high, to finance socialism and social services.   Relatively low, compared to socialist economies; however, elite capitalists promote arbitrary tax cuts for their own benefit; tax cuts have little if any benefit for the middle class.   Taxes cover cost of public services and promote business activities that serve the people and fulfill the nation's economic and environmental interests.
10 Environment
  Degrading; government makes little effort to halt the downward trend.   Economic interests and profit-maximizing drives overwhelm concerns over environmental degradation.   Economic goals are compatible with environmental conditions; one need not be sacrificed for another.
11 Natural resources
  Devastated and exploited due to the need to provide for the population.   Devastated and exploited due to profit-maximizing drive.   Raw materials, such as crude oil and metals, are protected for future use; agricultural lands are enriched and improved to yield high-quality nutritional produce.
12 Poverty
  Massive poverty exists, reflected in limited and low standard of living.   Tendency is toward massive poverty if increased cost of living isn't covered by income earned though increased work hours. Middle class tends to slip down to lower-income class.   No poverty exists; strong move toward creating a wealthy middle class.
13 Retirement
  At age 65 or younger.   Normally at age 65, but increasing to 70 and even older due to the need for more income to cover increasing living costs.   Everyone should be able to retire (from a financial standpoint) at age 50, unless they prefer to continue working for material gains or other goals.
14 Economic security
  and prosperity
  Minimum standard of living is provided to all, but prosperity is available only to the political elite.   No economic security exists at all or at any given time, not even for the wealthiest. Prosperity is possible only as long as one works; increased prosperity requires harder and longer work or use of illegal methods such as fraud, plundering, and swindling.   General economic security and true prosperity exist, reflected by less need to work. (These are the main features of Carefreeism.)
15 Society and the
  Depressed society, with little incentive to improve one's standard of living. Sports, music, and art are the only areas in which to stand out or improve one's standard of living.   Plenty of incentive to improve standard of living exists, with no end to the struggle for economic gains and achievement of social status through material gains. Secure, lasting prosperity is practically an unreachable dream for most people.   Material gains are reached relatively early in life, leaving plenty of time and resources (one's own savings and wealth) to enjoy a leisure and knowledge-based-society.
16 Unethical
  methods of
  Large-scale unethical operations are available only to the political elites; most other citizens can engage only in petty stealing and fraud.   Entire economy is based on the drive for fast enrichment, using such unethical methods as profit maximizing, late-fee charges, and high interest rates; fraud, plundering, swindling, and other schemes are commonplace.   Possibilities for unethical enrichment are few and discouraged (although a few people will find ways to cheat the system). Implementation of income equality and ethical profit making are cornerstones for decreasing the use of unethical means of enrichment.
17 Purchasing power
  Declines permanently; must be compensated for with salary increases.   Declines permanently and must be boosted through increased salary or other methods, such as fraud, swindling, and plundering.   Purchasing power improves through income increases and reductions in overall costs.
18 Currency
  Tendency to become devalued.   Devaluation occurs against some currencies and revaluation against others.   Currency is always strong and revaluing, unless exposed to currency from a better-run zero-cost economy.
19 Income equality
  Great discrepancy exists between high and low income earners, with no attempts made to reduce it.   Extreme discrepancy exists between high- and low-income earners, with middle class disappearing as some become elite capitalists and others join the ranks of the poor. No serious attempts, other than handouts in the form of tax credits, are made to reduce income inequality, but these attempts are ineffective.   Main goal is to eliminate extreme poverty and wealth; income equality does not mean equalizing all incomes. Reducing income inequality further discourages fraud, swindling, and plundering.
20 Productivity
  Altogether ignored as an economic factor.   Not properly or extensively researched or implemented.   One of the main pillars of a zero-cost economy. Ultimate speed of productivity must be implemented in every area of industry and the economy to cut costs and increase purchasing power.
21 Economic growth
  Falsified and distorted through social costs; no indications exist for economic gains of any kind; represents a major shortcoming for measuring economic progress.   Falsified and distorted through social costs; no indications exist for economic gains of any kind; represents a major shortcoming for measuring economic progress.   Tangible and measurable with the introduction of Economic Security Indices. (See book for details.)
22 Inflation
  Reflected in low-quality goods and insufficient services.   Tendency toward inflation occurs unless controlled by increased productivity; inflation is preprogrammed into the system.   Possibility of inflation is minimized if not eliminated, as the system is designed to eliminate costs of all types.
23 Deflation
  Chronic; goods and capital are scarce.   Exists during recession and depression; people and businesses fall victim to bankruptcies and total loss; money and capital are inadequate for manufacturing and job creation, while income is insufficient for people to purchase manufactured goods.   Impression of deflation is created because everyone owns everything and there is little demand for goods unless totally new products are offered. Exports may continue to boom.
24 Economic booms
  Possible, but a socialist planned economy doesn't always lead to booms.   Result from deficit spending, subprime loans, and economic bubbles; once their effects disappear or the bubble bursts, recession and depression follow.   Healthy, booming economy exists without busts or rollercoaster effect, opening new economic horizons and dimensions.
25 Economic
  recession and

  Chronic recession.   Recession or depression is guaranteed after any economic boom.   Lack of sporadic economic booms means no recession or depression occurs.
Copyright © 2009 Farid A. Khavari, PH.D.