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#308980 - 10/19/18 05:42 PM Re: Voters [Re: jgw]
jgw Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 2414
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
First, what socialism is. Here is one definition (you can google more but the definition is quite specific:

Definition of socialism
1 : any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods
2a : a system of society or group living in which there is no private property
b : a system or condition of society in which the means of production are owned and controlled by the state
3 : a stage of society in Marxist theory transitional between capitalism and communism and distinguished by unequal distribution of goods and pay according to work done

Here is a wikipedia link:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialism

It all boils down to the same stuff. Gov gets control of all production and then turns the management over to the "workers".

The point is pretty simple - words mean something and what I see people calling socialism isn't even close. You might also take a look at the "Socialist Worker's Party" (a group of serious loons). There is, in other words, a vast difference between 'socialism' and society taking over specific things in the public good. Some of these are Police and fire departments, libraries, education. The one currently causing fits but should be on that list is 'healthcare'. Actually I suspect that 'the military' is yet another gov undertaking which is supported by taxes. Basically, I guess, social enterprises, if tax supported, all qualify. This, of course, means 'agriculture' too, especially BIG agriculture, which is always claiming to be capitalist and privately owned. When one considers the billions that one is raking in I suspect calling it a "social enterprise" may be a bit off the mark.

My point is simple, all this business about 'socialism' is simply missing the point. Bernie Sanders, for instance, simply does not qualify as a 'socialist', unless you really mean "capitalist socialist". His call for Medicare for All is a good example of this and, as far as I can see a real cop out. We need some kind of single payer system which is completely available to all citizens and paid for, completely, by taxes and gov. The Bernie plan kinda pays for it but, if its like medicare, there will also be a medigap for the insurance companies to sell. On top of that gov must also seriously regulate the entire industry. No more Jackass plans like solving the drug problem by insisting other countries raise their drug prices and no more insurance companies. If we don't seriously regulate the entire industry we will be bankrupt within 10 years - others have done it and we should too!

We should also keep in mind that the United States is the ONLY industrialized nation that has a decreasing life expectancy whilst those that control the costs, control the industry, etc. have an increasing life expectancy. We sacrifice nothing, insofar as our healthcare is concerned. If we do it right we save over a trillion dollars annually on top of the fact that our healthcare will actually be better.

I should also mention that Switzerland has instituted a different healthcare plan and their costs are higher than the single payer systems as they kept the insurance companies in the loop. Their plan is pretty straightforward. If you are an insurance company you must give away basic healthcare and they can charge for the rest. One of the results of that one is that the insurance companies now own most of the hospitals in Switzerland. Interesting times.......








Edited by jgw (10/19/18 05:43 PM)

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#308982 - 10/19/18 06:56 PM Re: Voters [Re: chunkstyle]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 8379
Loc: North San Diego County
Quote:
Apparantly the invisible hand of the free market doesn't want to believe in climate change and resists the need to pair resources and Capitol to the issue. Instead, it allocates resources to produce confusion and sow doubt among the population and buys politicians to look the other way.


It's a bit more complicated than that. Sometimes the difference is simply a short term outlook or a longer outlook. Case in point:

Walmart solar panels

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#308984 - 10/19/18 08:34 PM Re: Voters [Re: jgw]
Greger Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 14780
Loc: Florida
Quote:
the definition is quite specific

Your definition isn't specific at all, it's all over the map. Here's one that that is pretty specific.
Quote:
so·cial·ism
/&#712;s&#333;SH&#601;&#716;liz&#601;m
noun
a political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.


We elect people to represent us. They write regulations to control the means of production, distribution and exchange. These regulations should insure that there is a level playing field for everyone.

Quote:
socialism
These days, the word socialism gets tossed around so much, it's almost lost all meaning. Originally, though, it was the bedrock of Marxism and meant that workers and their community should control the market for what they make.

Because the Soviet state eventually strayed far from Marx's idea of socialism towards Lenin's totalitarian communism, socialism is now often used to mean everything from "fascism" to "progressivism." But in its purest form, socialism was a political, social, and economic system meant to empower the working class. In the U.S. today, though, it's often used as shorthand for "the services that government provides and which are paid for by taxes." Depending on who's talking, that idea is either a goal or a target.


A system meant to empower the working class.

So stop with your definitions of "classic socialism" and government control of the means of production and try to get yourself into the 90s where we are trying to empower the working class through higher wages and social programs supported by taxes.

Now, just as in the days when Karl Marx formulated his theory, the rich have gotten rich on the backs of the working class. Inequality is rampant.

The Proletariat gets trampled into the dirt by the Bourgeoisie and the Aristocracy just doesn't give a sh*t.

That's the battle which has raged for eons.

So...try to get past your definition and read mine. Take it to heart because it's the definition all the rest of us are using in the discussions.
_________________________
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde

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#308988 - 10/20/18 03:01 AM Re: Voters [Re: jgw]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1394
A small point but important one is that, as far as I have understood it, Marx was not so much offering a theory but an explanation of how capitalism worked and what was its glaring deficiencies and contradictions with it. His suggestions of what should be done were general and not specific. If I'm wrong on this point please correct me.
I haven't seen where he proposes that government must be the organizing force of production, a top down approach.
In fact, it has been and is being done from the bottom up thru workers co-op's in many places in the world. It has been resisted in this country by the bosses.
Other less direct forms are labor unions.
Otherwise Gregor, I agree with how you painted it.


Edited by chunkstyle (10/20/18 03:09 AM)

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#308989 - 10/20/18 03:05 AM Re: Voters [Re: jgw]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1394
Walmart throwing up solar panels is like Jeffry Dahmer donating blood. It ain't complicated PIA, less you got mutual funds that require it to be.

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#308991 - 10/20/18 05:48 AM Re: Voters [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 8379
Loc: North San Diego County
I currently hold zero stocks or mutual funds, and I think Walmart putting up solar panels is an instance of a corporation looking at the bottom line and making a rational choice. You can make all the silly analogies you want, but Walmart putting up solar panels is a case where a corporation has looked into the ROI of something beyond the next quarter. Just because you hate them doesn't mean everything they do is bad. The real world is not black and white.

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#308992 - 10/20/18 01:17 PM Re: Voters [Re: jgw]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1394
I have no doubt Walmart looked at the ROI and went for it. If I had to bet, there was a tax subsidy involved that helped sweeten the pot.
Walmart does a lot of crappy things that are made with ROI in mind beyond the next quarter. Unfair labor practices, tax abatements, externalizing the labor costs onto state and local tax payers, environmental degradation are just a few of the negative aspects of Walmarts drive to create excess surplus for its board and shareholders.
I stand by my analogy.
My apologies, you may like Walmart for other reasons than being a shareholder. Perhaps it's how they manage to roll back prices and provide you with savings everyday?

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#308994 - 10/20/18 11:52 PM Re: Voters [Re: pondering_it_all]
Greger Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 14780
Loc: Florida
Quote:
Walmart putting up solar panels


Even a blind pig finds an acorn now and then.
_________________________
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde

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#308999 - 10/21/18 02:11 AM Re: Voters [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 8379
Loc: North San Diego County
I'm not a snob, so I do shop there sometimes. Feels very democratic to shop with the masses! I like it not so much for the prices, but simply because they tend to have a lot of things I need all in one place. When I want something cheap, I usually look at Amazon. When I want something now, Walmart is useful.

I think the Walmart victims list is overstated. If their employees want higher paying jobs, they can go look for them. Still a free country, at least for now. The real victims are small business owners who were making a 30% markup, who now are out of business because they can't compete. Boo hoo. All their customers are happier at Walmart, and I tend to side with customers instead of small business owners.

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#309000 - 10/21/18 02:47 AM Re: Voters [Re: jgw]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1394
Your confusing snobbishness with resentment PIA. Much like most Neoliberals confuse capitalism with democracy.
Walmart runs an extractive business models that, IMO, degrades local economies. Capitol flight accelerates and wages are reduced all while local taxpayers pay for the priveledge of supporting poor income workers.
I'm glad you've found good prices at. 30% off and stuck it to the small business owner. Heck, he might even be greeting you on the way in for those savings.
I resent my tax dollars supporting their business model but Walmart is one of many to externalizer their CODB on local governments and the tax bases to prop up their profits.


Edited by chunkstyle (10/21/18 02:51 AM)

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