socialism

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do you think socialism works?

NO!! all things that begin with S are bad.
1
17%
possibly
3
50%
I like shiny things
2
33%
only if a black guy is president
0
No votes
only when people are angry
0
No votes
yes!! sign me up for PTA.
0
No votes
 
Total votes : 6

socialism

Postby kelly » Fri Mar 23, 2012 7:48 am

poll: do you think that socialism will ever work?
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Postby JO 753 » Fri Mar 23, 2012 11:19 pm

I think it becomes the only option eventually.

If technology and the development of the rest of the world continue, there won't be any ordinary jobs for humans to be employed at. 100%automated factories will make everything and droids will perform all services.

I take it you're a libertarian or at least the diluted & confused milder version known as a 'conservative' from your poll response options.
DONT KaST YOR PRLZ BEFOR SWiN. XA WIL BE IGNOReD & TRaMPLD INTQ XU MUD. HaND XeM OVR RESPeKTFULE INSTeD.
http://www.nooalf.com
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Postby Mirza » Tue Apr 03, 2012 5:55 am

It works as good as a car with a nearly wrecked engine; It will drive for a while, seemingly fine. Then the engine will fail and reparation will cost a little too much.
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Postby Kemosabe-TBC » Tue Apr 03, 2012 2:11 pm

Mirza wrote:It works as good as a car with a nearly wrecked engine; It will drive for a while, seemingly fine. Then the engine will fail and reparation will cost a little too much.

But the alternative is walking.
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Postby Mirza » Tue Apr 03, 2012 6:21 pm

Kemosabe-TBC wrote:
Mirza wrote:It works as good as a car with a nearly wrecked engine; It will drive for a while, seemingly fine. Then the engine will fail and reparation will cost a little too much.

But the alternative is walking.

False dilemma. Taking the car analogy into the real world, we can choose to drive a better car, not one with a wrecked engine. Socialism is a wrecked system, and that includes morality too. It is no better than a car that drives a few miles and stops in the middle of the road. Socialism leads to a disastrous economy, and that's why literally every country that went from socialist to capitalist policies became far more prosperous.
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Postby Kemosabe-TBC » Wed Apr 04, 2012 3:45 am

I won't disagree on that.
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Postby JO 753 » Wed Apr 04, 2012 1:03 pm

What examples do you have?

Why do you think capitalism will still work when there's no reason to hire anybody?
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Re: socialism

Postby robert 46 » Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:35 am

JO 753 wrote:Why do you think capitalism will still work when there's no reason to hire anybody?

Why do you think totalitarian socialism will work when everyone is a ward of the state?

Ludwig von Mises of the Austrian School of economics proved that the centrally planned economy cannot work. It is impossible to predict or plan cost/price/supply/demand. These must be allowed to float in order to balance themselves dynamically. Capitalism has its problems, but is far ahead of whatever is in second place.
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Re: socialism

Postby JO 753 » Sun Apr 08, 2012 12:55 pm

Capitalism is already breaking down. Many people who need to buy stuff don't have any money to spare.

The boom & bust cycle can't go on forever. Trickle down economics doesn't work.

Are you suggesting that the business leaders of the world will cooperate and agree to limit automation just to keep the idea of employment alive?
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Re: socialism

Postby robert 46 » Mon Apr 09, 2012 9:14 am

As I see it, capitalism in the U.S. has two particular problems:
1) Greed
2) Government interference

Greed is distinct from the profit motive. If the economic environment is stable then businessmen can plan for the future for a long term continuing profit. However, when the economic environment is volatile, businessmen employ greed to make money rapidly in the short term up-cycle to carry them through the subsequent down-cycle.

Government interference takes many forms, but in general it manipulates the market. For example "The power to tax is the power to destroy." So the government has income tax to destroy the incentive to work; sales tax to destroy the incentive to purchase; and capital gains tax to destroy the incentive to invest. These are antithetical to the basic concept of the capitalistic free-market economy.

The government manipulates markets by getting involved to shift some balance off-kilter. Tax rates, interest rates, money supply, subsidies, tariffs, quotas, etc. When the government got involved in healthcare by assuming some of the bills, it increased the demand which encouraged the doctors, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies to raise prices under the assumption that Uncle Sam has deep pockets. Similarly with gvt-financed low-cost student loans: the demand for higher education went up, so the colleges and universities saw an opportunity to keep raising tuition, again because Uncle Sam has deep pockets.

Whenever anything consistently rises in price faster than inflation it eventually prices itself out of the market. This is what the government is doing through interference with healthcare and higher education. It is soon coming to the point where a college degree will be of no value to the majority of college graduates, while the student loan will be a definite handicap.

Fundamentally, it is not the purpose of the government to keep people healthy and alive. People come into this world and then leave as a course of nature. Rather, it is the purpose of the people to keep the government healthy and alive: which requires sound fiscal policy. However, the pols pander to the people's self-absorption by providing so-called "entitlements" to buy votes while squandering the treasury to bankrupt the nation. Healthcare will eventually become a scarce commodity, and people will again be dying at nature's appointed time, as it had been for millennia before modern healthcare; which is hardly more than a century old, and is in the process of being wrecked.

The overall trend is a disaster in-the-making because the people's representatives in government are basically the same kind of short-sighted, ignorant dolts as the general electorate who put them in office.
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Re: socialism

Postby JO 753 » Mon Apr 09, 2012 5:40 pm

Sounds like you get all your opinionating from Fox.

The basic premise of the GoP campaign against Obamacare is that things were fine before. Or, even further than that, really; that the insurance industry was over regulated.

As if we can't see the direction things have been going for 30 years. As if they didn't obstruct and damage the reform as much as possible. As if half the content isn't stuff they created and proposed themselves during prior administrations. And especially, as if we can't just look at other countries and see how they are doing it successfully.

Here: http://www.fareedzakaria.com/home/Articles/Entries/2012/3/19_Health_Insurance_Is_for_Everyone.html

That will be a real eye opener for you.
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Re: socialism

Postby robert 46 » Thu Apr 12, 2012 9:16 am

Zakaria's article is far too long to address sentence by sentence.

He compares U.S. healthcare with Switzerland and Taiwan. Healthcare expense: U.S. 17% GDP; Switzerland 11% GDP: Taiwan 7% GDP. But he does not point out the big difference that the latter have healthy economies with high worker productivity, while the U.S. has an enonomy in shambles with a large superfluous population. He calls the U.S. a "rich nation", but with $15.6 trillion of debt we have become a poor nation. The Swiss system uses public hospitals which are not-for-profit. Taiwanese doctors are required to see 200 patients in a 12 hour shift. (See the enlightening comments following the article.)

Costs are high in the U.S. because, as I pointed out, Uncle Sam picking up the bill allows providers to raise prices to a level at which the individual would balk at paying. The principle of insurance is to protect against the unexpected large expense by pooling the risk. Requiring healthcare providers to cover all procedures, large and small, and existing conditions, is not insurance, but only imposing a middleman on the system; which requires operational overhead of 7% or more. The only advantage of group care is that the middleman can negotiate lower prices at volume rates. However, when doctors and hospitals are allowed to charge different rates to different people it is a form of discrimination. Businesses are required to have fixed prices which apply to all customers. Thus if anti-discrimination was enforced on doctors, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies there would be no need for the middleman "healthcare provider"- each procedure would have a fixed price or rate for all customers. After all, healthcare is a personal matter- the recipient being a single person. So, although there is justification for health insurance, there is no justification for group healthcare middlemen.

Zakaria wrote:...it's chronically ill patients, just 5% of the total, who account for 50% of American health care costs.

This shows the problem of continuing to pay to treat end-of-life illnesses: it prolongs suffering at great expense to no useful purpose. This kind of interference with nature is a huge mistake.

Zakaria points out the burden placed on companies to provide employee healthcare. As I see it, businesses have only one legitimate requirement: to provide for the treatment of on-the-job injuries and job-related illnesses. There is no requirement for the employer to cover other health concerns for any employee.
...for broader costs to decline, there is no alternative to having some kind of board that decides what is covered by insurance and what is not--as exists in every other advanced country. This has been demagogued as creating "death panels" when it is really the only sensible way to make the system work.

People cannot be kept alive forever. If people wish to stay alive then they should live a healthy lifestyle. If they don't then stupidity is rightfully its own punishment.

If Time had a contrasting opinion article it would give them some credibility, but I see them as just another ideological media propagandist.
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Re: socialism

Postby JO 753 » Thu Apr 12, 2012 4:32 pm

I agree that the employer based health insurance system is a bad idea.

What you may not know is that it could have been dumped in the reform if it wasn't for the GoPs obstructing everything. Single payer is what we really need. I believe it will be unavoidable eventually anyway.

I agree that insurance is a fundamentally flawed idea and that people should be allowed to pass on much more readily than they are now. But where do you draw the line? And what happens when there's a cure for everything? There's way too many people on Earth as it is!

We cannot have granny dying from an easily treatable problem just because she isn't rich. We can't continue to have middle class families losing everything when junior needs medical care just because the insurance company wrote a policy that lets them weazel out of anything. Having people showing up in the emergency room for conditions that could have been treated cheaply when they started years ago raises costs for everybody.

John Stossel had a good example with Lasik. People have to pay for it themselves usually, so it got cheap. It would be great if the insurance companies suddenly disappeared, but in this version of reality, they are safely & securely dug in like fleas on a fluffy cat, so the only way to keep them and the health industry from completely running amok is government regulation.

What the libertarian philosophy ignores is that somebody has to make and enforce rules in order for the game to work at all. The human race does not have the temperment or intelligence to operate as freely cooperating individuals.
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Re: socialism

Postby robert 46 » Sat Apr 14, 2012 1:50 pm

Quote (JO 753): I agree that the employer based health insurance system is a bad idea.

Making it compulsory is totalitarian.

: What you may not know is that it could have been dumped in the reform if it wasn't for the GoPs obstructing everything.

Obamacare is a bad idea and needs to be scrapped in its entirety.

: Single payer is what we really need. I believe it will be unavoidable eventually anyway.

What is really needed is the government out of the system so that prices are not pushed up ouside of the constraints of free market supply/demand.

: I agree that insurance is a fundamentally flawed idea and that people should be allowed to pass on much more readily than they are now. But where do you draw the line?

It used to be consequential to what people could afford and were willing to pay. Catastrophic care insurance is a legitimate service for those who choose to pay for it.

: And what happens when there's a cure for everything?

There is no cure for death, which is intrinsic to life. There is a great difference between "cure" and maintenance of an intractable medical condition. Doctors, hospitals, and pharmaceutical companies prefer the chronically ill as a continuing source of revenue. The last thing they want to see happen is the easy, inexpensive cure.

: There's way too many people on Earth as it is!

Far too many, and that is the folly of medically extending longevity and not regulating procreation.

: We cannot have granny dying from an easily treatable problem just because she isn't rich.

"Easily treatable" implies inexpensive. If granny can't afford treatment, and the family can't or won't either, it is not the purpose of the government to become involved.

: We can't continue to have middle class families losing everything when junior needs medical care just because the insurance company wrote a policy that lets them weazel out of anything.

Always read the fine print before signing.

: Having people showing up in the emergency room for conditions that could have been treated cheaply when they started years ago raises costs for everybody.

The majority of people appear to live unhealthy lifestyles. The society should not acquiesce to this.

: John Stossel had a good example with Lasik. People have to pay for it themselves usually, so it got cheap. It would be great if the insurance companies suddenly disappeared, but in this version of reality, they are safely & securely dug in like fleas on a fluffy cat, so the only way to keep them and the health industry from completely running amok is government regulation.

Regulation is one thing, but picking up the bills is entirely another. The government should enforce anti-discrimination so that the individual going to the hospital doesn't get charged three times that billed for a person on an HMO plan.

: What the libertarian philosophy ignores is that somebody has to make and enforce rules in order for the game to work at all.

Libertarians claim not to be utopians, but they assume a level of rationality which is lacking in the general populace; so most libertarian political ideas sadly are unworkable in practice, even though appearing sensible in principle. [1]

: The human race does not have the temperment or intelligence to operate as freely cooperating individuals.

Strife is built into the human psyche as a leftover from animal competition tending to outweigh cooperation. Competition is a component of evolution, whereas cooperation is a component of society. Which is not to say that other species do not have societies (bees, wolves, etc.)


[1] Libertarianism in One Lesson, David Bergland. A good overview.
Last edited by robert 46 on Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: socialism

Postby JO 753 » Sat Apr 14, 2012 6:50 pm

robert 46 wrote:Why do you think totalitarian socialism will work when everyone is a ward of the state?


Totalitarian socialism isn't the only option.

Nobody needing to work doesn't preclude democracy.

Remember the old film reels about the wonders of future automation? One of the advantages they brought up was less work - daddy would come home after 4 hours and always have 3 or 4 day weekends. Mommy would never need a job!

Somewhen around the late 50s, The Powers That Be realized the mechanically amplified per worker productivity could make them even richer instead of reducing the hours of the slaves.
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