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Twelfth grade economics students participated in a simulation to contrast production in command (communist) economies and market (capitalist) economies. Students were able to experience that when all the production decisions are dictated by the government, as is the case in command economies, the result is unmotivated workers and shoddy products (exhibit 1). In fact the students became so frustrated with the government in the first simulation they were asking to move before the simulation was even complete!
Whereas in a market economy where consumers and producers are able to make production decisions and are motivated by profits or income, higher quality and a variety of products are produced. Some students, such as Wesley Thomas, even did market research to find out what type of badge an economist would like when his production group created a Dow Jones Industrial Average badge. Student workers were so much happier in the second simulation in the capitalist country that they proudly wore the products they created.