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#310246 - 01/08/19 11:36 AM The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist?
NW Ponderer Offline
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Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 17160
The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? (Vox). Again, a lengthy, but readable, discussion of a big idea. It's really the difference between Ocasio-Cortez' and Elizabeth Warren's visions of liberalism.

We've had several threads about new economic thinking and how broken capitalism is. This encapsulates many of them.
_________________________
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Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

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#310248 - 01/08/19 04:31 PM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
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Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1865
Pearstein's statement of their being no working class political movement in his opening argument kinda lost me. He's arguing from a standpoint of what he wants to believe is our history and curent situation and not what was/is. How can you take a guy serious after that?
I think capitalism is already in a transformational state and will conclude with totalitarianism (as it seems to nearly be). It already blankets the earth and technology seems to be accelerating it's transition and dominance. At the same time the contradictions keep piling up and can't be resolved. Just look at the amount of debt issuance since 2008 for households, commercial, student, etc.. Exciting times to be sure.
Trying to take away guy's like Pearstein's worldview and far more powerful people's worldview will be met with vicious response. That has got to be the greatest challenge more so than redistributing wealth. It upsets the 'natural order and the internal belief systems of ruling classes and hell hath no fury like an elitist exposed. Brazil may show us what happens here. Jack London's 'Iron Heel' dealt with this. The outcome to that response will seal our fate and I don't know if there is a recognition of these dangerous counterforces.

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#310249 - 01/08/19 04:57 PM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
Greger Offline

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Quote:
Is America’s future capitalist or socialist?


The answer to this pointless and polite debate is simple...yes.
Both are right. And both are equally wrong. There is an in-between that governments have been evolving towards for a long time. But it doesn't even have a name...compromise between the two is so unimaginable and difficult that it doesn't even have a name.

Are capitalism and socialism defined as right and left? Is centrism the perfect solution? Or is it just the battlefield where the two sides clash? Is there a Third Way? Where both money and people can be equally served by government.
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#310250 - 01/08/19 07:01 PM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
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Registered: 09/09/11
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I wish you'd all read the article.... I didn't agree with either of them, actually, but the lines are being drawn. Is there a role for capitalism in a socialist world? Is there a role for government in a capitalist world? I agree that both can be true, and are. It is in the balance.

I don't believe that either economic socialism or capitalism are, in and of themselves, workable systems. Obviously, both have been tried to one extent or another and both have failed spectacularly. But from those failures, lessons can be learned. That is where I think the discussion between Perlstein and Sunkara can be informative - because both are wrong, but in different ways. Both came to the discussion with preconceived notions that colored their arguments, but each provided kernels of truth that we can expound upon here.

That is why I started this thread, to create more of a framework for discussion. Let's go back to Representative Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Warren. Do either have a vision of how to proceed in our fractious society? Are those visions mature enough to provide a roadmap? Are the forces they inspire able to be controlled? Are their visions sufficiently different?

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#310257 - 01/08/19 09:13 PM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
Jeffery J. Haas Online   happy

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Registered: 08/03/04
Posts: 14443
Loc: Whittier, California
Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
Obviously, both have been tried to one extent or another and both have failed spectacularly. But from those failures, lessons can be learned.


The lesson I learned a long long time ago is that purity is poison.
Purity in genetics results in profound birth defects, but it is also poisonous to art, literature, music, even politics and religion...and yes, economics.

Our present day form of capitalism is an exercise in the fundamentalist addiction to purity.

Purity leads to nothing more than purity oaths and an ever narrowing circle which ultimately ends in a circular firing squad.
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#310258 - 01/08/19 09:14 PM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
jgw Offline
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Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 2616
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
I guess I am confused about what this is all about. I read the article and it spent a lot of time explaining who was what kinda like the "who is on first" thing (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTcRRaXV-fg). When its all said and done it boils down to kinda simple things, regardless of obvious confusion, folks are unhappy, they are unhappy with the other side, they are unhappy with their side, something is not good, etc. This is what happens when each side just cannot bring themselves to talk to the other side. The capitalist 'knows' that the socialist wants everything he/she has and the socialist 'knows' that the capitalist wants to destroy everything because we all know every capitalist is incredibly guilty.

Basically, everybody is simply wrong and a functional system is made up of both sides, talking to one another, and doing the best thing for everybody. The problem with our system is that neither side is actually talking to the other. If you watch as much as a half hour of tv you will hear a talking head talking about talking to the other side. Its a common meme these days. Its also that which we all know as 'blather'. Nobody is questioning, for instance, that capitalism is responsible for raising huge populations from need, starvation, destitution, etc. On the other hand 'socialism' (citizens agreeing that some things should be the responsibility of everybody. Some of these things are law enforcement, education, healthcare, wars, etc) For a very long time both sides have been able to work with the other side. Now, however, instead of working with the other side the solution seems to be to hate the other side and have nothing to do with them. Both sides agree with talking to the other side but it just doesn't happen. Instead we have something like "talking at the other side" and listening not a wit.

As an interesting aside I guess I should also mention that the sides themselves have decided to move their goalposts which is not helpful. The Dems, for instance, want to war with each other about their stuff and the Republicans apparently would like to 'discuss' their own goalposts but seem to have been taken over by a beloved leader incapable of just about anything but blather making sure that no real discussions even take place.

I am old. I can, for instance, remember when somebody who owned a company that had employees rarely, if ever, made more than 2 times what his employees made. Now, it seems, its dandy to make more than 100 times what an employee makes. I consider this to be a bad thing and an incredible display of bad manners as well as pure greed. I can also remember when unions had the interests of its members as its first thought. Then the unions decided to get into bed with the mafia and take member money to build casinos in Las Vegas and this was the tip of the iceburg. The main reason, for instance, that the Dems were unable to pass legislation to force them that put up political ads to put their names on said ads, was because the Unions did't want that to happen. There is an American Airplane manufacturer which has a work force, for instance, that liked to go on strike during hunting season. My point is that both sides decided to go waaaaaaaay too far! The reason for that is that they stopped talking to one another and so there was/is, no mitigation!

Basically, there used to be standards and propriety. That has now been replaced with greed, personal power, and a general feeling that getting whatever you can, anyway you can, is the best way. I remember, once, that I had an employee who needed a raise. I explained that I couldn't give him one because that would mean everybody would have to get one and that would put me out of business. He replied that he understood that but still needed the raise. My solution was to get him a better paying job some place else. His attitude, however, is remembered. I have always wondered, if there was no better job would he have engendered a strike which would have killed the business? How could anybody believe that would have been a solution to anything?

These problems, I think, are just examples of poor judgment, on all sides. Until folks can sit down and work it out its just gonna get worse and worse and, in the end, historically speaking, the solution always seems to be blood on the streets ending with all the bad things we used to blame on the 3rd world. I am not even convinced that has been, and will continue to be, just the way things are.

The United States has had a pretty good run at things but, unless stuff changes, its gonna all go the way of other national failures. When you throw in stuff like climate change one can only wonder. As previously stated I am old so its unlikely I will bear witness to the coming disaster but I am convinced its pretty much on the way!

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#310264 - 01/09/19 02:21 AM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1865
Socializing capitalism should be done.
It's what's being proposed by Labor in the U.K.
It's what's been practiced at Spain's Mondragon for decades.
North Dakota has a 100 year old state owned bank.
Italy has about a third of its GDP being produced they cooperatives.
Governments owning means of production is not, as far as I know, socialism. It's state capitalism.
Democratizing the means of production is, as far as I know, socialism.
It also means wages and salaries and the sharing of profits gets decided democratically instead of a dozen or do people in a board room.
I've been impressed with Corbyn's labor proposals. It looks like a real evolution of capitalism whereas all we keep getting is the same old swindles.

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#310286 - 01/10/19 03:52 PM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1865
Don't you hate it when the democratic party quashes inclusive populism from Sanders and now Cortez just to leave the stage to Right wing populism....

Tucker moves the conversation to the right while the neolibs punch left...

I heard from someone that the hard right is good at identifying problems and hypocrisies but their diagnosis for what's causing it is usually wrong. I would agree with that sentiment and add that centrist Dems don't want to even admit that anything could be wrong. Especially when it's a democrat badged administration...


Edited by chunkstyle (01/10/19 03:54 PM)

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#310289 - 01/10/19 08:17 PM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
jgw Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 2616
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
Chunk;
I continue to wonder and you continue to bash the Democrats. We have TWO political parties. Third parties have been tried and failed but, normally, ruined any chance the party the third split from for winning ANYTHING. Seems to me that you, and them that buy all your arguments, are well on their way to yet another 3rd party which also means we will get to have the exquisite experience of another 4 more years of the Jackass (and a possible very real takeover by the right (I know, there is no right or left).

The only possible thing that may stand in your way is the indictment of the Jackass. I really hope that happens, for ALL of us!

I also sincerely hope that your 3rd party effort fail miserably - just saying...........

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#310300 - 01/11/19 02:55 AM Re: The Debate: Is America’s future capitalist or socialist? [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
member

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 1865
The populist movement primaried both political parties while running under a common agenda. It was so successful that new rules were imposed by both parties for their respective primaries to preclude this grass roots intrusion from ever hapenning again.
Politics today has been a choice between Pepsi and Coke. Neither being all that much different from one another with the exception that the right has embraced populism for some time now, while the center right party has morphed into a professional class political party.
I've stated more than once, JGW, that the political observation of facism being a rising populist movement that is denied a left alternative is a correct one, to my mind. The article I linked to is another clear example of the right speaking to middle class concerns whereas the center right has not. Not nearly enough and not for a long while.
You may be content with the Democratic parties direction and record if achievement but I'm not. I'm not interested in lame lesser if two evils choices and party loyalty tests. That's not politics and has been proven to be incompetent and ineffectual. I don't believe in giving the Democratic Party a free pass from critique. Any system that gets a free pass rots from the head down. If it can't reform itsrlf and prove its legitimacy to a majority of voters by no other means than 'not being the other party' then we are in trouble.
Oh wait.....

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