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A question for critics of Socialism

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posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:49 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
f you find Socialism bad, then explain why IT is bad. Calling it Communism, because Communism is already a widely despised political ideology isn't going to convince anyone but the people who are already convinced.

Now one more thing before I finish. If you'll notice, I made an effort not to single out any groups of people. I didn't call out conservatives or Republicans or right wing posters. I just said critics of Socialism, but even THEN I'm only talking to the ones that make this lazy comparison. I recognize that there are some intelligent and sincere critics of Socialism that understand the differences between the two ideologies and can form two separate and distinct opinions about each ideology instead of making an amalgamation between the two of them.



I don't make the leap you are referring to but I am going to chime in anyway -- hope you don't mind.

My issue with a (more) socialist federal government is CONGRESSIONAL SPENDING OVERSIGHT. It's a huge problem already and I have zero trust in Congress to spend money in a (more) socialist economy. Obama's stimulus package is a perfect example with millions going to phantom districts. The oversight we were offered was Recovery.org and apparently it wasn't even set up to notify recipients that they entered nonexistent zip codes. Yet, that was the explanation we were given and we were only offered a few examples which didn't nearly explain where all the money actually went. If tht's oversight, then it's sorely lacking. I didn't see anything about spending oversight in the link you provided in your OP.

If we could make spending oversight a priority BEFORE moving towards (more) socialism, I'd be much more open to it.

That said, I do believe that capitalism inspires excellence. Like it or not, money motivates people. What is broken with our capitalist system is the types of social welfare programs we throw at it to balance wealth inequality. Capitalism is based on competition, so our socialist tax dollars should be very focused on education and job training IF we want people to compete in a capitalist economy to the best of their ability. Instead, our social welfare system has created a cycle of poverty and under-education -- for generations of families. Further, I really do not believe the wealthy want to compete with an educated/trained populace. I believe they prefer a dumbed-down populace that is dependent on a socialist government.

Why on earth should I have confidence that our resources would be used wisely and for the benefit of the people if we moved towards (more) socialism? I would have to see some real oversight reform resulting in accountability to embrace (more) socialism. That's a reasonable position.




posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:50 AM
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originally posted by: CranialSponge
a reply to: Krazysh0t

I live in a very liberal socialist country and I have to tell you that I sit here on the sidelines reading these threads scratching my head wondering where the hell some people get their ridiculous thought processes from.

I don't live in a friggin communist country.
I can own and buy up as much as my little heart desires.
I'm not robbed of any freedoms, I live just as free as any red-blooded American does.




"I can own and buy up as much as my little heart desires."

You can as long as you have the cheese to do so, or is there a translation problem? Perhaps I am missing something here. Actually that post of yours sounded like the last Republican debate.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:52 AM
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a reply to: TonyS

What you are saying resonates with me. I can see that a society that would rely on zero growth rate would rely on supreme government control of reproduction. Thus, maybe a capitalistic society IS incapable of existing without relying on infinite expansion.

Though, I'm not really against infinite expansion. I think capitalism is a great way to introduce innovation and improvements into society. Without conflict, there is no desire to improve. I just think that everyone should get an equal footing at the starting line.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:53 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: greencmp

But there are certain lines that must be crossed for a country to stop being Socialist and start being Communist. A Socialist has to abandon certain Socialist ideals to become Communist. For the same aspects between Anarchy and Libertarianism. An anarchist would have to abandon the idea that the best government possible is no government, because that is the difference between anarchy and Libertarianism, the existence of government.


Communism and Anarchism are both supposed to just happen naturally.

Minarchism and Socialism either adapt the status quo, or make a State from scratch in their theory.

A truly communist situation, or a truly anarchist situation, cannot be made by politics. In both systems there would be an absence of politics, all individuals would have to believe the situation was the mundane reality of life.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:53 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
If you took my reasoning to say that taxation ='s Socialism then you missed the point I was trying to make. Like I said, I never made that claim and I definitely wasn't insinuating it either. So I suggest dropping this line of reasoning. It is a strawman.


Not a strawman, just an apparent misinterpretation, although I still don't see a reason to compare the two if you're not trying to highlight the similarities.


Well now we are getting into a conversation about Constitutional interpretation. As I said on page one, there are elements of Socialism in the Constitution, so I'd say that while these things aren't spelled out explicitly in the Constitution, it isn't a hard stretch to see that they are within the purview and scope of the Constitution.


Allowing for social programs and having "elements of Socialism" are different things. Hell, the existence of a government, like you alluded to earlier, is a social program. But I agree with your last sentence, and that's why I think that these programs need a long hard look at them to truly determine their necessity.

Key word being: Necessity--in its strictest definition.


The problem is that charities aren't efficient enough or have the ability to assist the entire population.


The entire population doesn't need charity--and I didn't say to rely on charity alone.


Reread what I typed there. I didn't say I didn't think a military was necessary to our government. I just said that it could function without one. Then I expanded my thinking so that you could get the hint that I wouldn't agree with a government that didn't have a military. Please try to read my posts carefully, this is twice now you've misunderstood the message I'm trying to get across to you.


Well, maybe I'm nitpicking your comments, or I'm just reading the words at face value, but when someone says something can function without something, then that means the latter something is unnecessary.

I am reading your posts carefully, trust me, as I don't prefer to just jump to conclusions about what people say, but when you only "hint" at things, you shouldn't feel a need to tell me to read your posts carefully--maybe you should stop hinting at things and just outright say them in the interest of minimizing misinterpretation. The problem isn't always with the reader...
edit on 10-11-2015 by SlapMonkey because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:54 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

I don't see libertarianism as a form of conservatism.

Fiscally conservative, socially liberal is the best way to describe it. If you tried to put libertarians on a political spectrum, you'd have to make a dot somewhere above the middle of the line, and draw a line to both ends. It gets more complicated than that, but I'm talking of libertarianism in general, not the Libertarian Party per se.

I think the main issue is a lot of people argue left V right (socialist / commie, etc. vs. conservative, republican, tea party, etc.) when in reality the two main parties R&L are both implicit in the crony corporatism of federal politics.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:57 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
I just think that everyone should get an equal footing at the starting line.


In America, the vast majority of humans do have equal footing at the starting line--that being the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It's what they do with that footing and the pursuit that follows that matters at the individual level.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:58 AM
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a reply to: SonOfThor

It's like what has been said by someone somewhere: Both wings are part of the same bird.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 10:59 AM
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a reply to: MotherMayEye

Fair enough. No system is perfect, and Socialism certainly allows for many opportunities to let its flaws shine (the more flaws and holes in the system the more taxes required to sustain it). The thing one should consider here is that would a system without these things be BETTER than a system with them? To expect perfection from your political system of choice is naive. There will always be corruption. Even self-described Libertarians can't shy away from it.

So let's consider, would you rather live with our current social safety nets, or would you like to live in a country without them? Did you have any fiscal hardships in 2008? Well in a non-socialist society, you likely would have done much worse than you did in this country.

Even if you, yourself didn't have any troubles then, businesses wouldn't be able to rely on the welfare they receive to keep them afloat. After 9/11, the Republican led government bailed the airlines out to prevent them from going under. Could you imagine the impact to our economy that would result in most major airlines going under? Well in a non-Socialist society we would have gotten our way.

The problems I see with a capitalistic society is that if something goes wrong, there is a MUCH larger chance that everything will break and we as a society have to start all over again. Well that wouldn't be so bad, except that starting over can also weaken our defenses both internally and externally, so now we have to shift resources to quelling violent uprisings or threats from abroad.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:00 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t The house always wins. When you hold the croupier you can rake as much as you can get away with. Democratic Socialism would be great if there was universal suffrage, referendum and consenting social contract at age of consent, we have a manipulated shadow of this. Though I really can't say, I am not a Roman Catholic.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:01 AM
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originally posted by: SonOfThor
a reply to: Krazysh0t

I don't see libertarianism as a form of conservatism.

Fiscally conservative, socially liberal is the best way to describe it. If you tried to put libertarians on a political spectrum, you'd have to make a dot somewhere above the middle of the line, and draw a line to both ends. It gets more complicated than that, but I'm talking of libertarianism in general, not the Libertarian Party per se.

I think the main issue is a lot of people argue left V right (socialist / commie, etc. vs. conservative, republican, tea party, etc.) when in reality the two main parties R&L are both implicit in the crony corporatism of federal politics.



Well that's a fair point too. Libertarianism used to be a liberal ideal. There are clearly Libertarian influences in Socialist thoughts. That's why I transitioned rather from a full-fledged Libertarian to a Democratic Socialist so easily. I didn't have to change too much of my political and social outlook to match the ideology.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:02 AM
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originally posted by: kenzohattori69
a reply to: Krazysh0t The house always wins. When you hold the croupier you can rake as much as you can get away with. Democratic Socialism would be great if there was universal suffrage, referendum and consenting social contract at age of consent, we have a manipulated shadow of this. Though I really can't say, I am not a Roman Catholic.



I have no idea what you mean here. You are going to have to explain yourself better.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:04 AM
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a reply to: projectvxn

I'm not so sure about that.

"Personal property is the effect of society; and it is as impossible for an individual to acquire personal property without the aid of society, as it is for him to make land originally... Separate an individual from society, and give him an island or a continent to possess, and he cannot acquire personal property. He cannot be rich. So inseparably are the means connected with the end, in all cases, that where the former do not exist the latter cannot be obtained. All accumulation, therefore, of personal property, beyond what a man’s own hands produce, is derived to him by living in society; and he owes on every principle of justice, of gratitude, and of civilization, a part of that accumulation back again to society from whence the whole came." - Thomas Paine

"When the good Samaritan left his Patient at the Inn, he gave Money to the Host, and said, TAKE CARE OF HIM, and what thou spendest more, I will repay thee. We are in this World mutual Hosts to each other; the Circumstances and Fortunes of Men and Families are continually changing; in the Course of a few Years we have seen the Rich become Poor, and the Poor Rich; the Children of the Wealthy languishing in Want and Misery, and those of their Servants lifted into Estates, and abounding in the good Things of this Life. Since then, our present State, how prosperous soever, hath no Stability, but what depends on the good Providence of God, how careful should we be not to harden our Hearts against the Distresses of our Fellow Creatures, lest He who owns and governs all, should punish our Inhumanity, deprive us of a Stewardship in which we have so unworthily behaved, laugh at our Calamity, and mock when our Fear cometh. Methinks when Objects of Charity, and Opportunities of relieving them, present themselves, we should hear the Voice of this Samaritan, as if it were the Voice of God sounding in our Ears, TAKE CARE OF THEM, and whatsoever thou spendest, I will repay thee. But the Good particular Men may do separately, in relieving the Sick, is small, compared with what they may do collectively, or by a joint Endeavour and Interest" - Benjamin Franklin

"I hope that we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country." - Thomas Jefferson.

"The power of all corporations ought to be limited, […] the growing wealth acquired by them never fails to be a source of abuses." - James Madison

"If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their money, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them (around the banks), will deprive the people of their property until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered." - Thomas Jefferson



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:04 AM
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a reply to: greencmp



If one good thing can be said about the prevalence of variations of this conversation around the world is, most people agree that communism and fascism are bad. Most people.


Yes.

I think it's safe to say that most of us humans living in 1st world countries do not want communism or fascism sitting at our front doors. We're too used to living with 1st world freedoms.

I think it's also safe to say that most us do not like any kind of "ism" that falls under the category of a tyranny or oligarchy.

The proper balance of capitalism and socialism is an absolute necessity in any country that wants to live under 1st world conditions. Allow either "ism" to fall too far on one side or the other, and we (the people) have a big problem on our hands.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:05 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

So you are saying that we do have social safety nets? So we are already socialist?



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:08 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

I agree with your logic, but the Keynesian / bail-out solution is really only a way to kick the can down the road. I'm a libertarian but also a realist. Of course a correction would be ugly and difficult, but the more the problem is kicked down the road the worse that correction becomes.

As to needing a social safety net, I think an interesting comparison to make would be federal social welfare programs to local and state welfare programs. Before federal welfare was as big as it is, churches and local Government played a big role. Now, I think the more local we get, the easier it is to manage as far as social programs. How long have we had a war on poverty, and still we have poverty on a massive scale?



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:08 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: NihilistSanta

Actually the way Socialism works is that there is a maximum cost that we can assign to cover the social safety net for each person in the country. Unless the population changes, that cost isn't going to go up or down. With capitalism, you are only restricted by the total greed of all the participants in the economy. It's not the same thing at all.


That cost of the safety net will increase as the Socialistic interventions alter the balance of resources in the market. Production that is not paid for will diminish, and resources assigned away from their free market uses will get less bang for their buck. That will make everything either more expensive or less available -- which leads to further intervention and further diminishing production. The vicious circle of intervention and reduced production which can only end in total control.

The free market caused bidding for all resources. The highest price is paid for labor and resources, remembering that everything will be sold at the lowest possible price. There is no way for central planning to assign all those bids and prices as equitably and productively as the free market.

Socialism can only grow the power of government, no matter the intentions.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:10 AM
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originally posted by: SlapMonkey
Not a strawman, just an apparent misinterpretation, although I still don't see a reason to compare the two if you're not trying to highlight the similarities.


The point was to show the hypocrisy of labeling taxes as "theft" when talking about Socialism but being ok with them when conceding that you are ok with a Libertarian government needing to impose them to survive. I want to see the line where Libertarian necessary taxes stop being taxes and start being unreasonable theft.


Allowing for social programs and having "elements of Socialism" are different things. Hell, the existence of a government, like you alluded to earlier, is a social program. But I agree with your last sentence, and that's why I think that these programs need a long hard look at them to truly determine their necessity.

Key word being: Necessity--in its strictest definition.


Do you think it is unnecessary to have a social safety net in case you were to lose your job, become seriously injured, or suffer some other form of severe financial setback?


The entire population doesn't need charity--and I didn't say to rely on charity alone.


The entire population doesn't need welfare either.


Well, maybe I'm nitpicking your comments, or I'm just reading the words at face value, but when someone says something can function without something, then that means the latter something is unnecessary.


It isn't necessary. A government can govern it's people without a military. It just wouldn't be able to defend itself from external threats, but one could easily argue that a commune of people self-governing is itself a basic government. Such a government likely wouldn't have a military.

Now, in this day and age, it is VERY unwise to have a government without a military unless you have good allies, such as Japan.


I am reading your posts carefully, trust me, as I don't prefer to just jump to conclusions about what people say, but when you only "hint" at things, you shouldn't feel a need to tell me to read your posts carefully--maybe you should stop hinting at things and just outright say them in the interest of minimizing misinterpretation. The problem isn't always with the reader...


When I talk, I talk matter of factually and without emotion. I also try to separate my personal opinions from the discussion at hand at times to prevent my personal ethics from distorting the facts I am trying to review.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:12 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: TonyS

What you are saying resonates with me. I can see that a society that would rely on zero growth rate would rely on supreme government control of reproduction. Thus, maybe a capitalistic society IS incapable of existing without relying on infinite expansion.

Though, I'm not really against infinite expansion. I think capitalism is a great way to introduce innovation and improvements into society. Without conflict, there is no desire to improve. I just think that everyone should get an equal footing at the starting line.


Well, I don't advocate anything regarding economic growth or the lack thereof. I have only considered the research of the topic.

There are however many people who advocate for a "steady state" (zero growth) economy and you can see their propositions at: steadystate.org...

As you might have guessed, they're in favor of the proposition because they see it as one in which the fewest resources are wasted and they see it as "sustainable" non-development(?). I don't know. Its an interesting idea, but life......is messy. There's no agreement on an acceptable method of regulating human reproduction and.........people move....they cross borders and its near impossible to stop them unless you're willing to go all medieval on the immigrants/emigrants.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 11:12 AM
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originally posted by: Harvin
a reply to: Krazysh0t

So you are saying that we do have social safety nets? So we are already socialist?



What do you call welfare, SNAP, unemployment benefits, Social Security, and other programs of their nature?



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