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OP/ED: Is Capitalism leading us into a Dictatorship?

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posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 03:25 PM
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In a historical view, Capitalism has never faced more challenges than it does today - the ideas of Socialism and Communism [et al] were destroyed. Falsely taught through the education system and the revolution Marxist's claimed would happen is likely it never will. So what is this new threat? It is the beast itself - Capitalism.
 


The basic idea of Capitalism was one of freedom. Freedom to own our own property, to begin to control our destiny, to start a business and let the people decide if they needed or wanted our product. It is a system which allows the “Means of Production” to be owned by the people and not the State. However what happens when the Means of Production is controlled by one company? That is what I wish to identify.

On August the 13th 2002 the U.N. Conference on Trade and Development, published a report outlining the fact that “29 Of Top 100 World Economic Entities Are Companies.” [1] Now with the rise of oil, living costs and other factors it is set that these companies and their profit margins will begin to increase. So where is the threat? Look at Wal-Mart. On the surface they are a dream for an entrepreneur in fact many people still believe Sam Walton must have made a pact with the devil to gain such a quick rise to prominence in the United States and the World market. So where is the problem? The little-man.

Big-business [a term often used] has slowly been killing off private and smaller industry. Wal-Mart are able to buy so much of one item that they can successfully lower the price and under-cut the rest of the free-market. They are slowly becoming another ‘Microsoft’. Good for Sam Walton and his family however bad for other companies. Wal-Mart, like Microsoft have control of the market.

So let us look at this 50 years down the line. What happens when we have one Super-Market? One car-company? Whatever comes next?

This is where Capitalism begins to destroy itself and to turn internal. Each of these business will begin to buy each other out. To keep on gaining more and more control until we are left with one company. People already say they fear the control business has on Government’s but wait till this happens.

We will have no choice but to watch what they want, to read the books they wish to show us, to eat the food they allow, to drive the cars they allow and it will eventually end up in the hands of the few once more. The idea that there is a New World Order is a fallacy - the Old World Order has yet to leave us.


[1] www.unwire.org...

Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
OP/ED: Freedom? What Freedom?




posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 03:40 PM
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Bullpuckey, people are free to shop where they want. If people really wanted to preserve the little mom & pop stores around the country they would. The simple fact is, people want lower prices more than anything else and the economics of scale favor the larger stores. Yes, this simple fact decreases, year by year, our shopping choices, but there is absolutely no danger of all stores eventually merging into one. Big chains are limited by thier size where they can put a store (i.e., they will not build a store in some small backwater place because there just isn't enough business to make it pay). Therefore, little mom & pop places will continue to service small customer populations. The big stores will congregate in large shopping malls and larger towns & cities and try to lure customers from the surrounding countryside by their lower prices. But the convenience of shopping close to home will still keep many small businesses alive. We'll just have to accept paying more for the convenience.



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 03:43 PM
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The ideas of socialism and communism destroyed?

What planet do you live in?

Socialism and Communism are very much alive. There are several countries that are socialists, and there are countries that are communists.

Neither one is dead.



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 03:50 PM
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I don't follow, where is the connection between laissez-faire capitalism resulting in monopolies and that leading to dictatorship?



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 03:52 PM
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it's not capitalism that is leading us in the direction we are going but I think a combination of greed and unacceptance of responsibility.

governments, businesses, as well as individuals all have thier own responsibilities to society. we all hear quite often just what the individual's responsibilty should be, but what of the governments? or the business's?

should the government be responsible for bailing out businesses? should the businesses be held responsible for another term of "record profits" for their stockholders? who is responsible for providing for the needs of the children? Parents? if so, just how are they to meet this responsiblity? through employment? well, wouldn't the businesses by held responsible for paying their employees at least enough to pay for the basic necessities of life?

governments, businesses, as well as the individuals are failing to uphold their responsibilities to society. with freedom, comes this responsibility. if that responsibility is ignored, society will be forces to restrict the freedoms for self preservation.



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 05:20 PM
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I'll get back to this point by point.

Muaddib, your statements display just what my point was. Communism and Socialism have been destroyed. There is no Government which followes the Communist Manifesto. We have Government's who say they are but that doesn't make it so.

If I call a cat, a dog, it is still a cat.

In fact, if you look at the actions of Stalin he allowed people to vote between members of his political party attempting to claim it was democratic. Was it? Of course not - but he was able to fool enough people and along with the apathy of the other half [and the Gulag's] keep control. We [as a people] have changed what Socialism and Communism really is...and on my time on ATS I have seen less than 5 people who understand what Socialism really is...

Nygdan, I assume [hopefully correctly] you see the level of power that big business has on Government? What if you merge many of those groups together their power increases and increases to a point where they can rig and buy elections. With the threat of shutting everything down. They have their billions and will never be poor but if they can sack 100million people [for example] in a Nation, it would cripple it. One blow.

Astronomer68, low-income family members, old people [on pensions] and increasingly the Middle Class can't afford the choice anymore. As for them not setting up in villages? Where do you live? Tesco in the United Kingdom have just began to open smaller stores [like old family ran business] in villages. Under-cutting the market a lot and forcing people out of buisness. They have done it all around Oxfordshire [increasing at the moment into Northamptonshire as well.]


Ox

posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 05:22 PM
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I think the appropriate question should be

"HAS, Capitalism led us to a dictatorship?"



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 06:00 PM
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Originally posted by Odium

I'll get back to this point by point.

Muaddib, your statements display just what my point was. Communism and Socialism have been destroyed. There is no Government which followes the Communist Manifesto. We have Government's who say they are but that doesn't make it so.


That's the same excuse that socialists/communists give to try to excuse the faults of their systems.

In the communist manifesto, supposedly the people are in power, but how can you have everyone in a country in power? You can't...that's why there are the elite in Communism who control everything, and that's one of the reasons why Communism, or whatever you might want to try to call it, would never succeed.


Originally posted by Odium
If I call a cat, a dog, it is still a cat.


Yes, nomatter what you try to call those two systems, they are still socialist and or communist.



Originally posted by Odium
In fact, if you look at the actions of Stalin he allowed people to vote between members of his political party attempting to claim it was democratic. Was it? Of course not - but he was able to fool enough people and along with the apathy of the other half [and the Gulag's] keep control. We [as a people] have changed what Socialism and Communism really is...


Noone has tried to change Socialism or Communism Odium, give it up already.... You are only trying to give excuses. There are many Nazis that nowadays are claiming there was no holocaust either...trying to give an excuse for their criminal acts.


Originally posted by Odium
and on my time on ATS I have seen less than 5 people who understand what Socialism really is...


Don't you mean that there are 5 people who allow themselves to believe that socialism and Communism has never been implemented in any country, so as to give an excuse for keep trying these systems?

A mix between Capitalism and Socialism seems to work in some countries, but we can see that the claims that "everything bad is caused by Capitalism" are only lies.



[edit on 3-11-2005 by Muaddib]



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 06:18 PM
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by Odium Nygdan, I assume [hopefully correctly] you see the level of power that big business has on Government? What if you merge many of those groups together their power increases and increases to a point where they can rig and buy elections. With the threat of shutting everything down. They have their billions and will never be poor but if they can sack 100million people [for example] in a Nation, it would cripple it. One blow.


You are so right is not funny, our government has been taken by big businesses already, its own by monopolies and not only own it they are the government.

They already control everything from the machines we use to vote to the decisions our law makers make to benefit them.

They have plenty of money to get their influences into our political system and to buy out anybody they want.

Lobbying is a very profitable business in Washington.

When you have business willing to spend billions a year in the congress you know that they are not doing it without results, the House is an open house for the highest bidder.

The principles of capitalism was for the people to ensure their liberties and to stop been a civil slave to the state.

Funny.



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 08:51 PM
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Yes, but a dictatorship? It just doesn't follow. Business is going to manipulate government to get more money, once you're a monopoly, that doesn't mean much more than preserving the monopoly, and none of this requires that the businesses support a dictator or some cabal. Heck, it'd be safer to operate within a completely open society with a democratic government and a laissez-faire market. Heck, there isn't even a laissez-faire market in the US right now, and probably won't ever be.

I'll agree that capitalism can have bad effects, but not necessarily a dictatorship.



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 09:36 PM
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Well in Guatemala the United fruit corporation once got the U.S. government (CIA) to sponsor a coup to topple a socialist government in favor of a dictatorship that was friendly to the corporation.



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 02:37 AM
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Muaddib, sorry to inform you but that is one of the first things you learn at University.

There is no Socialist or Communist State that has ever existed.

As for everyone having the same say, it is known as a direct democracy and does exist. The U.S.S.R. used Stalinism and I can go on to each Nation that claims to have been one of these. It is about time you accept there never has been one and go learn what socialism and communism actually are.

Nygdan, I use dictatorship on the simple level. Roughly it'll be a group of people [or single person] who is unrestricted by law, constitutions, or other social and political factors within the state.

We are already so near to that, we have all seen 'Big Business' trample over other people...



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 06:58 AM
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As the size and power of multinational corporations grow, they attain the ability to not only affect the government of the 'home office' country, but wherever their interests take them. This is most evident in 'Big Oil'.

If a single company buys control of, for example, all railroads in North America prior to a time when it will be cheaper to transport goods by rail, rather than trucks, that company will determine what areas are supplied and which are not.

As drug companies are bought and incorporated into a single entity through acquisitions and hostile takeovers, that company will determine the future of the medical industry.

The corporate world is slowly becoming more powerful than any single government. So, yes, capitalism will lead us into a dictatorship, led by multinational corporations who's interests will supercede any governmental attempt at control.

(imo) In todays world, the bottom line and quarterly profits are more important than the betterment of society.



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 08:23 AM
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No pure Communist state has ever existed in the same way as there is no 'pure' Capitalist state. All economies are mixed - it is just a question of the extent of how socialist/capitalist they are.

I think - although I cannot be sure as this op/ed is very unclear on this point - that the author is suggesting that capitalism leads to increased power and wealth in the hands of a small number of companies, who ultimately will be more powerful than governments. These companies will then gain political power and will effectively rule nations - if not the world. This is a concept that has long been a staple of science fiction.

In some respects this has always happened. Big business has long been a major lobby group and political parties are loathe to upset big businesses because of their clout.

What is clear is that at its heart, capitalism has no morality and will quite happily side with a dictator as long as it protects its economic interests. China is a modern-day example of this. Historically, the Nazis are another.

While individual companies come and go (currently it is the mega-stores like Wal-Mart/Tesco who are mega-corps of the modern age), advances in technology has a strange knack of bringing down the old companies and ushering in the new business elite. Look at the introduction of the railways, of telecommunications and the internet and the number of huge corporations that grew up to dwarf those that came before.

However, capitalism does seem to veer towards oligarchies and monopolies. Whether this equates to a capitalist dictatorship is unclear though.



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 09:35 AM
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As successful as Walmart is, it will never control the entire market unless the government gets involved to force others out. The only true monopolies that have ever existed have been sustained with state guns.

But that isn't capitalism, that's mercantilism. In the case of actual capitalism (not mercantilism), show me the resulting dictatorships.

If you are concerned about the accumulation of political power, capitalism is the only system that separates political power from economic power. Capitalism is thus the least likely system to lead to dictatorship.



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 09:51 AM
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If you are concerned about the accumulation of political power, capitalism is the only system that separates political power from economic power. Capitalism is thus the least likely system to lead to dictatorship.


Capitalist-democracies have become de facto in the modern world and it was believed that capitalism could not work under a totalitarian regime. However, the recent evidence of China seems to question this somewhat - China is a totalitarian regime that is happily co-existing with capitalism.

In many respects, China has a 'purer' capitalist system than many other countries because it does not have strict regulations on workers etc. In this way, it is more like the laissez-faire governments of the 18th and 19th century Britain/America where slavery was used as a means to propigate wealth.

Capitalism is not necessarily a barrier to the emergence of a dictator, nor totalitarianism. As long as big businesses are kept sweet by the regime (as in Nazi Germany) they can happily co-exist with the government - no matter how unpleasant it is. Moreover, if that government actively undermines the rights of workers (meaning buisnesses don't have to pay as much in the way of wages etc) then they will be all the happier.



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 12:51 PM
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Originally posted by kedfr
Capitalist-democracies have become de facto in the modern world and it was believed that capitalism could not work under a totalitarian regime. However, the recent evidence of China seems to question this somewhat - China is a totalitarian regime that is happily co-existing with capitalism.


China was communist, saw how disasterous that was, and embraced what amounts to mercantilism. As a result, the heavy hand of communism has lessened, thus proving the point that wrestling economic power away from politicians, even in part, reduces authoritarianism. This highlights the success of capitalism in reducing despotism, not the reverse.



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 01:19 PM
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Is Capitalism leading us into a Dictatorship?


In a word: NO!


I don't really like capitalism too much for these reasons:
1. It works to the benefit of the greedy
2. It makes people who aren't greedy become more greedy.
3. It Makes the Rich become richer and the poor, poorer.

With that said, I do not believe that Capitalism and a Dictatorship are directly by design of creation linked in their purpose.
Capitalism works best when there is NO Government intervention. We are heading towards a Dictatorship because the wealthy Elite have figured out they can use their money and wealth to buy the government and impose their will on the middle and lower classes. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Many of the lower classes are not too bright, and the middle class is made of mostly christians who can't wait to have Christ come back. These 2 lower classes are taking the bait, while the Elite are having their cake and eating it too.

This all I believe was an eventuallity created years ago by the Elites. Some people call the Elites the nWo... But thats what they want to be called. Lets call them what they are. The Great "Greed" Whore mentioned in biblical prophecy.



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 02:52 PM
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when corporations have incredible power; like in USA thru lobbys
a type of government called Corporate Republic is formed

A republic is a form of gov't in which the people elect represenatives to speak for them at Congress

A corporate Republic is a form of gov't in which the people elect represenatives whom are thus Bought out by corporate interests and end up Representing the Corporations and Not the People

A democracy is a form of gov't in which the people actively vote on all issues; because in democracy there is no elections of represenatives
Example :: Ancient Greece, Athens city-state *during certain periods

there are different shades of democracy
the ultimate form of democracy would be Virtual Democracy

In theory, Socialism and or Communism are very very similar to Virtual Democracy
In fact i cannot even tell the differance between the two
Also; there has never been a realization of this form of gov't in our modern world

in a nutshell; Socialism/Communism/Democracy form of gov't favors the will of the people over all other influences

Freedom is essential in these govt's ; and there is no Social Classes
Everyone is middle class ; because resources are split up evenly among the populace

Its about Equality and Fairness
Its about keeping people from consolidating any power to themselves
It keeps the "little man" in charge of his own destiny

USSR and PROC were not communist nations
They were Dictatorships / Fascism / Despotism

The USA is not a Democracy either
It was a Republic, and now it is a Corporate controlled Republic

The founding fathers of the USA choose the Republic form over Virtual democracy for only one reason, practicality

At the time *late 1700s* it was not feasable that a nation of millions of people to achieve a reasonable attempt at Virtual Democracy because they did not have the Technology or the Organization required to implement such a lofty goal

In todays world , 2005, the Technology is available to produce the type of Organization nessisary to implement a full fledged Democracy
((the Internet being one of these technologys))

Do the people of USA have the Right to hold a vote and decide if they want to keep the Corporate Republic or to dismantle it and construct a Virtual Democracy?
Can the people do this? The constitution gives the People the Right to do such a thing; but current influences in the government will probably stifle it at every turn; and even use lies and physical force to ensure that their current gov't survived

In a democracy ; The gov't is not allowed to lie to the people; because the govt IS the people

In fact; I would go so far as to suggest that the current form of Corporate Republic in power in USA is preparing itself to shift into a new form of Gov't

Technocracy

In the form of Gov't called Technocracy
The people are controlled by Technology itself

Massive Central computer networks and survailance networks keep tabs on all the citizens; regulate their lifestyles, and the only "freedom" anyone has is what the Technocrats whom rule the Technocracy allow

Who are Technocrats? well, IF USA shifts into a technocracy; the current elites whom control our gov't today *big $$$* will also manage to keep their power indefinatly in the Technocracy

Because in Technocracy voting is useless; even if they "allow a vote" it will be thru electronic voting and could easily be manipulated anyway the Technocrats wish due to the simple fact they control all of the central networks and have the ability to effect anything they wish

In Virtual Democracy electronic voting would also take place; almost daily on most issues * and people would be educated equally and aduquately enough to form quick decisions on new bills/laws so in theory it wouldnt take more than 10minutes of their time per week to actually become directly involved in the process

In virtual democracy , the people could decide to do away with electronic voting and revert to paper voting
The reason the corruption would be held to a minimum is because the News networks and other information awareness corporations would be held in check by the people *Govt* and lies would not be tolerated by this very public

There would be no need for an administration or congress
Only a judicial branch would be absolutely nessasary because the People would replace Legislative and Executive branches

ill go ahead and jump around a bit here to explain exactly why USSR and PROC were actually Fascist form of gov't instead of Communist/Socialist

Fascist govt = Rule by one person or group (party)
in a fascist gov't , oppisition is destroyed by any means; including violence

for the most part , Imperialist form of govt and Fascist form of govt are virtually the same , Monarchys or Oligarchys fit into this catagory as well
There may be small differances , but on the overall scale; things operate the exact same
The Ruler/s can keep power as long as they want; and their Will is what will be enforced *and violence may occur agianst dissenters*

i could go on and on about this...and if provoked i will lol

But thats my initial attempt so i will let it stand
Thank you for your time in reviewing my comments

My Opinion is this ::: The only form of Govt i wish to have is a Democracy/Virtual Democracy (((Which is also identical to the theory behind Communism/Socialism/Marxism)))

One tidbit; In virutal democracy Capitalism could still exist if the people chose such a thing
But one differance; Capitalism would be Limited and Regulated aggressively by the People to ensure that no one gets too much power or $$$ ***Power and $$$ are the same thing for the most part***

Example ::: No one can have less than 10,000$ a year **welfare** and no one can exceed 20million dollars in assets

A bottom cap and a top cap to ensure everyone remains in middle class
Everyone would still have to work for a living; but no one would have the power to control anything because they would not be allowed to gain over 20million $ in assets / anything they made beyond that would be funneled into the IRS tax coffers and redistrubuted to public works/education / healthcare / welfare

Thx for listeing
Have a good 1




posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 04:12 PM
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Well, let's look at Marxism, which is a combinant theory that a civilization journeying toward a near-utopian society structure such as true communism begins with capitalism, travels through socialism, and eventually, arrives at communism. Marx also realized that there would have to be the understanding that all society structures are based on the so-called "little people", the farmers and industry workers, and that the eventual appreciation of these individuals as the key to any society would lead to a more communal civilization.

If all goods, services, and so forth had been distributed voluntarily in equal shares, NOT based on work done or favoritism, nations that claimed "communism" would have truly been communist. However, socialism seems to be where all the supposed "communist" countries stopped.

Sadly, this same socialism seems to be where our capitalism is headed, just as Marx predicted. What can be done? Hell, do socialism right, and it won't be too bad (except for our personal rights), do it wrong, and we'll end up like the USSR, or worse.

If one examines the concepts of peaceful anarchy and true communism, one finds stunning similarities...




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