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Socialism

Discussion in 'Philosophy and Religion' started by Satya, Oct 1, 2009.

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  1. Lucifer

    Lucifer Registered User #666

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    What real good has human progress done us anyway? The world is a bit of a mess, between global warming, the threat of nuclear disaster, war, poverty, high depression and drug abuse rates in developed countries, I almost think we were better off in the stone age. Maybe life wasn't so comfortable, but it was supposedly eglatarian, and there weren't as many depressed emo kids running around.

    I don't purpose we go back to the stone age and I don't think I completely socialist society is a good thing. I've seen a world dominated capitalism, and it is obviously it is obviously run for the sake of the upper classes and them alone, to the detriment of everything else.



    Maybe then it would be positive to adopt some socialist policies. I think a mixed sort of government is the best.
     
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  2. the

    the Si master race.
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    Novacaine
    What about dinosaurs, lions, cannibals, and sharks?
    Supposedly.
    Obviously.
    The world will go on as it always has. Anarchy, Monarchy, Democracy, repeat.
     
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  3. TheLastMohican

    TheLastMohican Captain Obvious
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    If you mean that it's problematic that people feel entitled to determine where their wealth is to be distributed, then yes, you could call it a drawback of capitalism. But if you mean the feeling of entitlement to inheritances from others, then no: very few people are able to live on inherited wealth, so I don't see how that effect is supposed to be relevant. Socialism, by contrast, is supposed to cover everybody.
     
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  4. OP
    Satya

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    There are theories of socialism where it doesn't lead to bigger government.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarian_socialism
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ConfederaciĆ³n_Nacional_del_Trabajo

    Why would you assume that socialism always leads to a bigger government?
     
  5. OP
    Satya

    Satya C'est la vie
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    That seems like a valid argument against socialism. However, as I said before, there are pros and cons when it comes to stagnation.
     
  6. OP
    Satya

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    What you describe is how it currently is in America, and how it has been through much of its history of becoming a world power. We have a progressive tax rate, so the rich pay a larger percentage of taxes than the poor. Our largest welfare base is our seniors. We dedicate nearly a third of our yearly federal budget just to them. Its a rather sad thing to consider when you realize that the largest group that is in poverty in this country are children.

    I suppose the argument here is that in socialism, everyone is lower middle class, whereas in capitalism, some people are steeped in poverty and some people are ultra rich. I say that because there was a time when America had a middle class, due to its mixed economy, but the last 3 decades of the free market movement has eaten away at it.
     
  7. OP
    Satya

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    I'm not sure what you are talking about.

    Shai said that people feel they deserve everything in socialism. I was merely remarking that later generations feel they deserve everything in capitalism, even though they inherited much of what they had from the earlier generation. Just because you feel you deserve everything doesn't mean that you actually have enough to live on.
     
  8. Eniko

    Eniko May snark if provoked
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    You know, socialism != communism. I think that needs to be pointed out.
     
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  9. OP
    Satya

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    I'm finding it interesting that people seem to think that socialism is inherently authoritarian and that capitalism is inherently liberalized. They don't seem to realize that socialism and capitalism are economic systems, not political systems. A liberalized government can be socialistic and an authoritarian government can be capitalistic. It's actually worrisome that some people can't separate the economics from the politics.
     
  10. midnightmelody

    midnightmelody nagging for truth

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    Socialism is a direct frustration to ambitious people (i.e. not me)

    A lot of people say socialism could never work because of human greed and curropution. This is true.

    But that is also true with most of politics, as politics is just a bunch of ideals anyways. It really irks me when politicians speak of their opinions as if they are indisputable facts.

    As much as I'd love a little communist utopia, I know that isn't very plausible or realistic.
     
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  11. Lucifer

    Lucifer Registered User #666

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    I get your point. But What I meant by "real good" is that human progress including novicaine come at a high environmental cost. Is the future of the human race worth curing a tooth ache, filling a tank of gas, or watching your favorite TV program?

    Now I am not against technology I just don't like the attitude the "progress" comes before all else. People tend have an unbalanced view about the costs of development. And since development is a off shoot of social structure like shai was implying earlier I think it is safe to say that that people have an unbalanced view of their social order.




    I am going to nit pick for a sec, sharks, lions, and cannibals still exist and dinosaurs didn't exist in the stone age.

    But to what seems to be your over all point, I am again not anti technology. I don't like the seemingly prevalent attitude that technology is a good thing at the expense of everything else. And the seemingly imperialist attitude that we should lead indigenous societies into the post industrial era. That shift comes with a lot of consequences, ones that we ignore at our own peril.


    And despite all that you still see extreme capitalism as a good thing?


    Thats an over simplification I think.
     
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  12. TheLastMohican

    TheLastMohican Captain Obvious
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    Oh, my mistake. I thought you only meant individual inheritances, so I was pointing out that that entitlement would not come into play for much of the population, while entitlement caused by socialism would.
     
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  13. Norton

    Norton XXXX

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    Little things like antibiotics, vaccines, libraries, sewers, education, irrigation, liberation of women, increased life span, telecommunications, radio, the internet, and, by the way, the computer you just used to communicate the above (not to mention a million other things you'd hate to live without).

    Communism had its origins in Socialist thought. Socialism is a lot closer to Communism than Capitalism. Both Socialism and Communism fail to take into account human nature. Aggressive, driven (and, sometimes, obnoxious) people start and manage companies and dominate industry in a Capitalistic economy and they are easy targets for derision by less ambitious people. After all, who do you think has the guts to take a second mortgage out on a house to start a company? At least, in a Capitalist system, these people are easily controlled through regulation (if there is the political will to enforce it). They are also distributed among multiple companies that are competing with each other. These same kinds of people, in Socialist and Communist systems, go into government and dominate society from much more powerful, monolithic positions.

    What is the "high environmental cost" of novacaine? In the U.S., companies not adhering to the laws and standards of "good manufacturing practice" (GMP) administered by the FDA and EPA, can be fined and, ultimately, shut down and put out of business. If you've ever tried to set up a commercial research laboratory in the U.S., you would know the incredible rules and regulations governing safe, environmentally appropriate laboratory design and practice. If you are experienced in navigating this morass of regulations, particularly in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries, you have marketable skills, indeed.
     
  14. Rudy

    Rudy Regular Poster

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    Yeah, pretty much. The lack of incentives for individuals is sufficient to implicate pure socialism as a failure.

    It's mostly "cons" when you're living in a world with other societies, in which case stagnation means you will be overtaken in development, and then will exist at the whim of the more powerful entities.
     
  15. the

    the Si master race.
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    I dont think the human race is in trouble because we have striven to have painless dentistry. A tank of gas could have been a tank of some other fuel granted, TV is just entertainment. No real value except relaxing and pleasure. I suppose we could do without but I wouldnt if I got to pick.
    Back when we were creating technology people thought the world would last forever (or God would be the one to destroy it). Now we know better. Change happens slowly. Change is happening now. I will now get off my Obama impersonation haha.
    Yup. Capitalism isnt just that. There is good and bad in all forms of government. I like to deal with the form of government I am most familiar with.
    I dont. So we skip a step sometimes, big deal. Adding a new step is just going to make for a slightly different slideshow.
     
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  16. OP
    Satya

    Satya C'est la vie
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    So basically the only two arguments that can really be made against socialism is that it doesn't provide adequate incentive to work and it doesn't provide opportunities for research and development?

    So can't socialism be enhanced to deal with those specific issues?
     
  17. mjgjr706

    mjgjr706 Regular Poster

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    I think socialism leads to bigger government because it is all that I have ever seen it lead to... Also I believe that history is the biggest argument against socialism that I can think of. Thats my short answer
     
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  18. Lucifer

    Lucifer Registered User #666

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    Nor do I, I think we are in trouble because we value technological progress and thus economic progress and vice versa before anything else. I think we need to slow down and take stalk of what the human race really needs. Do we really need more development for the sake of development ? Or do we need to try and save what we already have?

    Then why have there been apoclyptic stories from the beginning of time?


    Which is why I think as opposed to having only one form of government we should strive to have a mixed government. Take the best from both worlds and the like.

    That is sooo SJ of you LOL
     
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  19. Lucifer

    Lucifer Registered User #666

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    Yeah it can! I think we need a mixed form of government, which should be the easiest way to improve on socialism.
     
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    #39 Lucifer, Oct 2, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2009
  20. OP
    Satya

    Satya C'est la vie
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    I just provided a link to an example where it didn't lead to "bigger government". First rule of critical thinking is to question your assumptions. Socialism is an economic system, not a political system. It can exist within a liberalized government. I'm also assuming that you have never ate a potluck dinner, because that is a perfect example of socialism that has nothing to do with government.

    To expand upon the idea of non coercive forms of socialism...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gift_economy

    History speak loudly against Communism. Europe is heavily socialized and the United States has long had a mixed economy.
     

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