Socialism refers to various theories of economic organization advocating state, worker or public ownership and administration of the means of production and allocation of resources, and a society characterized by equal access to resources for all individuals with an egalitarian method of compensation. Contrary to popular belief, socialism is not a political system; it is an economic system distinct from capitalism.
Social Democrats propose selective nationalization of key national industries in mixed economies, while maintaining private ownership of capital and private business enterprise. Social democrats also promote tax-funded welfare programs and regulation of markets. Many social democrats, particularly in European welfare states, refer to themselves as socialists, introducing a degree of ambiguity to the understanding of what the term means. Libertarian Socialism (including social anarchism and libertarian Marxism) rejects state control and ownership of the economy altogether and advocates direct collective ownership of the means of production via co-operative workers' councils and workplace democracy.