• Terrapin Station
    6.8k
    That is communism, as I said it has motivation problems. When people do something they think they need to get something in return. The only way it could work is if we're all carbon copys of each other.hachit

    It might sound like communism but what I'm proposing is quite different. "Need to get something in return"--I specified that my system would be competition-oriented and it would give scarcer resources to certain people.
  • hachit
    94
    no it was communism as Karl Marx purpose. All the people would work for the benefit of the state. We never actually had a communist state.
  • Terrapin Station
    6.8k
    no it was communism as Karl Marx purpose. All the people would work for the benefit of the state. We never actually had a communist state.hachit

    You're saying that my system is communism a la Karl Marx? (and I'm just not aware of this?)
  • darthbarracuda
    2.9k
    As well, it seems obvious that without a system of laws in place there would be more theft and murder and rape etc etc.DingoJones

    This does not seem obvious to me at all. I think it is true that laws exist to control the behavior of people, but under a more radical interpretation, laws exist to keep those in power, in power.

    In other words, laws are a symptom of a deeper problem. Laws are supposed to "fix" a problem. Under your interpretation, that problem is human nature. Under a different interpretation, the problem is the nature of a fraction of the human population.

    Consider how mass warfare (which involves killing, theft, rape, destruction, etc) is only accomplished by state entities. The irony of a state protecting its function by doing exactly what it seeks to minimize!

    Yes, indeed there would likely be more terrible things happening if there were no laws and we still sought to live in a capitalist society. The point is that if we get rid of capitalism, we open the door for a society free of laws that still works.
  • hachit
    94
    yes that is what I'm saying, don't worry I've met plenty of people that makes that mistake. Also socialism was developed as a way to transition to communism but it never could.
  • Terrapin Station
    6.8k
    yes that is what I'm saying, don't worry I've met plenty of people that makes that mistake. Also socialism was developed as a way to transition to communism but it never could.hachit

    Sure. So for one, you'd say that Marx's system has competition for scarce resources as a major motivator?
  • hachit
    94
    that is the motivation behind all systems. Economics teaches that we have infinite wants and finite resources. The systems we invent are ways of seeing who gets what.
  • Terrapin Station
    6.8k
    that is the motivation behind all systems. Economics teaches that we have infinite wants and finite resources. The systems we invent are ways of seeing who gets what.hachit

    Sure, so how, exactly is this built into Marx's communism?
  • hachit
    94
    Well let start with that frist he belive we finite resources. He figured that we would look at those resources and divide them up in the best intrest of the state.

    I I'm sorry if this is not answering your questions. I think it might of misunderstood somwere
  • Terrapin Station
    6.8k
    He figured that we would look at those resources and divide them up in the best intrest of the state.hachit

    I'm not saying anything like this, though.

    My system has competition for scarce(r) resources as a major feature of the system.

    You said that my system is the same as Marx's.

    So Marx must have competition for scarce(r) resources as a major feature of the system. I'm asking you how this is built into his system. Marx' system is set up to encourage competition from who/via what means, and to reward competitors with scarce(r) resources how?
  • Bitter Crank
    7.2k
    Well, I'm in favor of eliminating capitalism and replacing it with a hybrid variety of industrial democracy, socialism, and anarcho-syndicalism, but capitalism, capitalists, and their defended system are so deeply entrenched, the chances of such a hybrid coming about make a snowball's chance in hell seem downright rosy.

    Is there any way to "unentrench" capitalism? Sure. Every system is vulnerable--in the same way that any system is dependent on the consent of the population (ultimately). People could just say NO to capitalism, stop going to work, stop buying things, stop cooperating with the government, etc. etc. etc. That would require a revolution in the way people think, before such a revolution could be instituted.

    So what -- an eternity of capitalism? No. Unfortunately, what will undo capitalism in the most unpleasant way is capitalism itself. We are experiencing one of the consequences of capitalism -- global warming -- which seems to be happening faster than climatologists thought it would even 10 years ago. When climate warming gets bad enough, economies will collapse, and with it, the survival systems of billions of people.

    Economic exploitation and perpetual growth can't go on forever. Unfortunately, the denouement of over-exploitation and zombie growth is economic collapse -- again, pushing the survival of billions into oblivion. (And this would eventually take place without global warming.)

    What happens in the future, in a very real sense, is nobody's choice: We are riding history, we aren't driving it.

    So, our only option is the highly unlikely rejection of capitalism. Snowball in hell, again.

    Otherwise, in a century or so of climate change and continued depraved exploitation by the remorseless engines of capitalism, we might be wondering how could we possibly think that we are lucky to be alive.
  • hachit
    94
    Ok it not Mark's
    [quoteI'd replace it with a socialist system, not centered on money per se, geared towards providing both the essentials for everyone--food, housing, health care, education, transportation, etc.--and the things that people desire, which would be discovered via polling, and where the competition for scarce resources is centered on helping others, cooperating, providing things that people need/want. The more you do, via a combo of hard work and/or ingenuity, to provide things that people need/want, the more you have access to scarcer resources.[/quote]

    But this is what you said.

    Communism is, not centered on money, it is geared towards providing essentials for everyone. People would work to improve the state.

    This is were in went wrong.

    "What the combo of hard work and/or ingenuity, to provide things that people need/want, the more you have access to scarcer resources "

    I thought it mentioned that the more you work the more resources everyone would have access to. Wich is Marxists.

    Now that I read it again you mentioned the one
  • Bitter Crank
    7.2k
    James Howard Kunstler, who writes about ecology, global warming, peak oil, and so on, wrote a quartet of novels under the heading "A World Made by Hand". Kunstler's story is post-collapse, post apocalyptic. He doesn't dwell on the event that finally collapsed society, but here we are in a small, up-state New York town, representative of where the world is at. No oil, no electricity, no internet, no telephone, etc. etc.

    People are required to live (at best) at a 19th century level (not that bad, really) except they don't just naturally know how to do that. They have to figure it out. There is of course a huge population loss. Even though the people in the novels understand what causes disease, they don't have the means to deal with infection, for instance.

    Despite all that, the novels are fairly up-beat. In the end, enough people survive well enough that they can have hope -- provided they are very disciplined, and maintain the steep learning curve of 19th century survival skills. (In some ways, "19th Century" has to refer to the first quarter -- not the last quarter of that century. In other ways, people will be forced back into the 17th century -- simpler technology. Unfortunately (and this is the message of another very good novel, Earth Abides) succeeding generations will know less and less about the 20th/21st century ways and means. The most pessimistic approach to this problem is A Canticle for Leibowitz which is set in a desert monastery after nuclear war. Society, such as it is, has been pushed back to the medieval period. It takes roughly 2000 years to fully recover, at which point they have another nuclear war. Great novel.

    For instance, one can make soap out of used fat and a caustic extract of wood ashes -- but one has to know how to do it (otherwise one just ends up with gritty grease, not soap). One can preserve meat without freezing, but one has to know how, exactly, to do that -- otherwise, one will die of food poisoning (botulism, for instance). It's not hard to preserve cabbage as sauerkraut, but if not done correctly one ends up with a stinking mess--the sort of thing one finds in the distant reaches of one's refrigerator every now and then.

    Will humanity die out? No, I don't think so -- but a lot of people might wish they had died sooner, once social collapse gets under way.
  • hachit
    94
    Will humanity die out? No, I don't think so -- but a lot of people might wish they had died sooner, once social collapse gets under way.

    I agree on that. Humans are surprisingly resilient. However I think it would be irresponsible to leave that world for future generations
  • Bitter Crank
    7.2k
    However I think it would be irresponsible to leave that world for future generationshachit

    Irresponsible, indeed. Most unkind -- but that is what we are doing. People who are in their 20s or younger, and everyone who will be born later, are being screwed out of a decent future. I'm glad I'm 72 and not 22, because I think the remainder of the century is pretty much down hill in terms of the environment and global warming, (and continuing down hill in the 22nd century and later).
  • TheMadFool
    2.9k
    maybe it is. but then your saying that it's a cultural problem, are you not?hachit

    Some people have argued that there is no such thing as human nature. Me, I think there is and all our problems arise from it. Look at socialism/communism. If you read it, it sounds perfectly noble but it's not practicable because we're, by nature, greedy, selfish, power-hungry, etc.

    I guess what I'm saying is that the fault is not with the system itself, be it capitalism or communism; the problem is with us, humans.

    So, given that human nature isn't going to change any time soon, all economic systems, old or new, will succumb to our shortcomings.
  • Bitter Crank
    7.2k
    "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves..."?

    Look at socialism/communism. If you read it, it sounds perfectly noble but it's not practicable because we're, by nature, greedy, selfish, power-hungry, etc.TheMadFool

    I too think there is such a thing as human nature, and it is true that we often demonstrate that we are greedy, selfish, power hungry, and worse. Unfortunately for your negative conclusion, we also demonstrate that we are generous, altruistic, peacefully inclined, and better.

    The fundamental problem of our human nature is that we are driven toward conflicting goals. We want to walk through the valley of death and fear no evil but, unfortunately, we sometimes find that the only way we can do that is to be the meanest son of a bitch in the valley.

    There isn't any way we are going to change our perversely contradictory nature. The best we can do is arrange society in such a way that being the meanest son of a bitch isn't the best way to get ahead. Predatory capitalism is one of several meanest-son-of-bitch systems. Surely we can do better, without resorting to some utopian scheme.
  • TheMadFool
    2.9k
    Predatory capitalism is one of several meanest-son-of-bitch systems. Surely we can do better, without resorting to some utopian scheme.Bitter Crank

    Agreed. It's a tough task, if not impossible. There must be a way out of this mess. The rich getting richer, the poor getting poorer and the middle-class trying to avoid getting poorer but trying to get richer. It's a trap.
  • Josh Alfred
    71
    When has that ever worked out? XD
  • Josh Alfred
    71
    This is basically what I was going to posit, after coming up with the answer to this question with some off-line thought.

    When reality sets in human nature gets in the way of any Utopian state. Capitalism is suitable and functional for the greedy consumerists. One solution is to educate greed out of people instead of making it the ideal method by which the system functions and by which a kind of human nature is actualized. Even if we did educate into the minds of the young, moderation, there would still be the problems of greed taking over. Greed, social jealousy etc. is learned but also impulsive.

    I firstly advocate socialism to an extent. I will not get into it unless triggered to. I also think we can make communities/societies that are made after the ideals of Jacque Fresco's RBE. However, some are globalists, and I don't think that is going to happen. "We" still have democracized and humanized the globe yet.
  • Bitter Crank
    7.2k
    It's interesting how minor (not an insulting term) thinkers can have a major influence. My minor thinker is Daniel DeLeon, who died... 1914? He bounced around, like Fresco did, and eventually settled into the editorship of the Socialist Labor Party -- now a largely moribund organization. My exposure to him was through some former SLP people who started the New Union Party, which lasted for about 35 years. The SLP/NUP idea is that, "in a democratic society, it is far more sensible to use democratic means to further socialism than to resort to violent revolution. (The Bolsheviks, whatever else they were, were not residents of a democratic state.) We advocated militant unionism, public education, party organization, and eventually (dream on) winning over the populace to industrial democracy.

    I noticed that Fresco worked with Earl "Madman" Muntz. Muntz, I know, was involved in the development of television early on, and among other things 4 track tape. (Unless you are into audio visual stuff, 4 track tape isn't very interesting.)

    There are a lot fo ideas floating around out there that can, should, and ought to be at least tried, if not applied, but there are also a lot of fossilized vested interests that won't, can't, and will never stop blocking progress.
  • AppLeo
    163
    In capitalism, there is private property. Private property allows people to be entitled the product of their labor. The more you produce, the more you can have. The less you produce, the less you have.

    Capitalism is the only economic system that is consistent with individual rights and personal autonomy. People are free to produce, buy, and sell whatever it is that they want regardless of what the collective thinks. So if you want to be free and want others to be free then you want capitalism.

    Capitalism is the only moral and justified system. Any other system is immoral because it takes away people's freedom.

    Capitalism is also practical and more effective economically. Businesses compete against one another to produce the highest quality product, at the lowest possible cost, at the largest scale possible.

    If your product is too expensive compared to another businesses product, then you won't be able to make money, so you have to figure out a way to produce your product more efficiently so that you can sell it at a lower price and still make a profit.

    If your product is low quality compared to another businesses product, then you have to figure out a way to make your product unique or better compared to other businesses so that you can still make a profit.

    If your product isn't scalable and only available to a few people, then you can't sell enough to make a profit, therefore you need to find a way to mass produce your product so that everyone can have access to it.

    And because there are multiple businesses, the public has multiple choices in what they want to buy. If you don't like a certain brand of food, you can buy a different brand. You can select whatever product that suits your needs the best.

    Capitalism also attracts and benefits intelligent and ambitious people who want to live their life to the fullest. Why? Because they are free to make a profit and are not subjected the whims of the public good. They can create businesses that create these amazing products for the public. Some examples are Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Jeff Bezos. Notice how all of them are incredibly rich. In capitalism, the more value you produce to the public, the more money you make. Jeff Bezos is the richest man in the world because he created Amazon, which has increased the quality of people's lives astronomically.

    Socialism and communism is immoral and unjustified because there are no property rights. People are not entitled to the product of their labor. Anything you make can be confiscated by the government or the mob, making you unfree to pursue whatever material values you have. In fact, the more you produce, the harder you work, the more intelligent you are, the better your business and products, the more socialism punishes you because you pay higher taxes compared to everyone else. People also blame you for why they are poor or unhappy. They blame you because you're ultra rich or simply well to-do, or hard-working, despite the fact that you worked hard for what you have or created a business that sells products that makes everyone's lives so much better.

    Socialism and communism are also incredibly economically inefficient.

    My evidence is modern day Venezuela. Real socialism is taking place in Venezuela. Many leftists and those in Hollywood supported this socialism that took place and talked about how great it was. Some still talk about how great it is.

    People there are starving! People are so poor and the government hasn't been able to provide the free healthcare and food that it promised, despite the fact that Venezuela has plenty of oil and other resources that would make the country rich. The state has collectivized the farms and many other industries which has destroyed the economy.

    Why does socialism fail? Because when the state acquires a part of the market, it is essentially monopolizing it. Which means there is no competition, and where there's no competition, there is just the government creating a low quality product, at a high price, and struggles to scale it to everybody.

    Because in socialism you are not entitled to your labor, there is no incentive to make a profit to make more for yourself. There is no incentive to work hard or to produce anything of value to sell to people. There is no incentive to build a business and make a living for yourself. The only incentive to get the money and other handouts provided by the government which of course the government has confiscated from the people who have built their wealth.

    Because the productive people have lost the incentive to produce in a socialist country, and because they don't want to rely on the government to take care of them because the government does an incredibly poor job at providing food, housing, and healthcare, they flee the country to a more free country that actually has a more free economy. Because the people who actually produce anything of value flee communism and socialism, the communist/socialist country will eventually self-destruct because no one works to produce anything of value. OR, a black market occurs because people want to produce and be entitled to their labor anyway despite the fact that it's against the law to own your own business and work for just yourself without having to pay taxes..

    Those who decry capitalism are afraid of being independent and underestimate the ability of others to be independent. Socialists are dependent and want to live mystical and irrational lifestyles. Living irrationally and mystically prohibits you from creating value in the market place, which means you cannot make money to earn a living. So the only way to live irrationally and to still make a living is through the use of socialism. In other words, you take money from people who do live rationally and produce value, and give that money to yourself through the use of force and coercion by the government.
  • Judaka
    94
    Capitalism is similar to democracy, in that it's really the only sensible option we've got. And by sensible I mean implementable, functional, effective and I use all these terms relative to other options.

    If you see problems with capitalism then consider advocating changing the way capitalism is implemented, looking at it from this perspective you suddenly have a great variety of options that range from minor to extreme in nature.
  • hachit
    94
    only sensible option we've got. 
    That is my point.
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