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Workable Socialism

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Simon Steele said:

For profit food is exploitative. The government could pay the farmers, but anything we require to survive being "for profit" means exploitation. Like when Nestle a few years ago said water isn't a right, and they'd like to privatize it. 

So yeah, food and clothing could very well be under the state's control, but why you think complete control? I don't know. I suppose it shows you're not interested in a serious conversation. This isn't about binaries. 

If food and clothing are considered basic human needs and people are not allowed to profit from others “needs” why should the State (or the People if you prefer) allow individuals or groups of individuals to profit from those needs?  

If profit from basic human needs is immoral in your view then this does seem binary to me.  You are allowing that profit to continue if you allow individuals or groups of individuals to profit from their abilities to produce better food or better clothing and demanding profitable remuneration for their efforts.  

Why shouldn’t the State bar these efforts if such profitable remuneration is wrong?

I guess my ultimate question is whether you believe any and all profit is wrong?  Or, is there a level of profit that is acceptable for human effort?

Edited by Ser Scot A Ellison

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On 7/8/2019 at 11:26 PM, a good and nice guy said:

i don’t think even the most staunch liberal market capitalist can justify rentierism, without just straight up mask off “fuck you, i got mine so that’s that.

“Rentierism”?

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On 7/8/2019 at 11:26 PM, a good and nice guy said:

i don’t think even the most staunch liberal market capitalist can justify rentierism, without just straight up mask off “fuck you, i got mine so that’s that”

A liberal market capitalist can justify anything. :) In this case, the argument goes something like this: if the rents are high, then capitalists will fund the construction of additional housing and rents will decrease. The reason this is not happening in today's cities is an excess of local regulations stipulating limits on the size of buildings, fractions of newly constructed housing that must be reserved for low-income residents, rent control, etc. etc.

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If you really want to explore how capitalism and socialism have dirty hot sex, look at how the military builds its equipment.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

If food and clothing are considered basic human needs and people are not allowed to profit from others “needs” why should the State (or the People if you prefer) allow individuals or groups of individuals to profit from those needs?  

If profit from basic human needs is immoral in your view then this does seem binary to me.  You are allowing that profit to continue if you allow individuals or groups of individuals to profit from their abilities to produce better food or better clothing and demanding profitable remuneration for their efforts.  

Why shouldn’t the State bar these efforts if such profitable remuneration is wrong?

I guess my ultimate question is whether you believe any and all profit is wrong?  Or, is there a level of profit that is acceptable for human effort?

Go look at the CEO or major heirs of say Hunts foods homes and then at the living quarters of the average field hand picking tomatoes for them.  

Go look the at what the board of directors of Nike eats for dinner and then look at how someone working in one their sweatshops lives.  

It's not that "no one can profit" from these things it's that ".5% of the people involved shouldn't be making magnitudes more than the ones actually doing the labor".  And at the end of the day it's not the CEOs and management paying salaries, it's the customers that buy the products.

Not to speak for him but Simon answered your question in the last paragraph you quoted:

Quote

So yeah, food and clothing could very well be under the state's control, but why you think complete control? I don't know. I suppose it shows you're not interested in a serious conversation. This isn't about binaries

 

Edited by larrytheimp

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, larrytheimp said:

Go look at the CEO or major heirs of say Hunts foods homes and then at the living quarters of the average field hand picking tomatoes for them.  

Go look the at what the board of directors of Nike eats for dinner and then look at how someone working in one their sweatshops lives.  

It's not that "no one can profit" from these things it's that ".5% of the people involved shouldn't be making magnitudes more than the ones actually doing the labor".  And at the end of the day it's not the CEOs and management paying salaries, it's the customers that buy the products.

Not to speak for him but Simon answered your question in the last paragraph you quoted:

 

What is an acceptable level of profit if profit from basic human needs is considered “immoral” or “unjust”?  

Are we talking about allowing profit for the value added to the basic materials like food and clothing, or is that considered immoral or unjust as well?  

What I’m having difficulty with is the idea that selling food and clothing is unjust or immoral.  That’s where this seems to make the question binary for me.  Regardless of value added by the farmer, chef, or tailor, they are still profiting from selling something tied to a basic human need.  If you find that to be unjust or immoral why would any level of profit be moral or just?

Edited by Ser Scot A Ellison

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3 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

What is an acceptable level of profit if profit from basic human needs is considered “immoral” or “unjust”?  

Are we talking about allowing profit for the value added to the basic materials like food and clothing, or is that considered immoral or unjust as well?  

What I’m having difficulty with is the idea that selling food and clothing is unjust or immoral.  That’s where this seems to make the question binary for me.  Regardless of value added by the farmer, chef, or tailor, they are still profiting from selling something tied to a basic human need.  

Yeah, I got that question too. 

I mean, if there isn't enough profit, those making basic human needs may make less (or quit) and then our needs won't be met because of supply shortage. 

Off course, if we are talking about behavior such as East India Company officials abusing Company Rule powers to seize grain and sell it back at famine prices, then that's certainly bad. But most producers don't have power like that to abuse. 

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20 minutes ago, larrytheimp said:

major heirs of say Hunts foods homes and then at the living quarters of the average field hand picking tomatoes for them.  

The heirs had ancestors who took the risk and established a business. They had vision, and put down time, effort, and capital and it grew. It could have gone south and if it did, their homes would look like a field hands. But it didn't, and if the successful ancestors wanted to pass down the fruit of their success and risk taking, they have that right.

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Profit ceases to be a virtue when it becomes greed, and it almost always becomes that. When a tiny portion of the population has enough wealth to live a thousand life times while half of the country can’t handle an unexpected $500 bill, we have a serious problem. And capitalism celebrates that outcome. This isn’t hard.

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Just now, Br16 said:

The heirs had ancestors who took the risk and established a business. They had vision, and put down time, effort, and capital and it grew. It could have gone south and if it did, their homes would look like a field hands. But it didn't, and if the successful ancestors wanted to pass down the fruit of their success and risk taking, they have that right.

I have more trouble with that.  The “Rule against perpetuities” is the imbodiment in law of the idea that no one should be able to provide for all their ancestors forever.  

If some level of profit based upon producing things that provide for basic human needs is acceptable what is that level of profit and how is that level of profit determined?

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1 minute ago, Br16 said:

The heirs had ancestors who took the risk and established a business. They had vision, and put down time, effort, and capital and it grew. It could have gone south and if it did, their homes would look like a field hands. But it didn't, and if the successful ancestors wanted to pass down the fruit of their success and risk taking, they have that right.

So we should have kings who made their name off of brutality?

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2 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Profit ceases to be a virtue when it becomes greed, and it almost always becomes that. When a tiny portion of the population has enough wealth to live a thousand life times while half of the country can’t handle an unexpected $500 bill, we have a serious problem. And capitalism celebrates that outcome. This isn’t hard.

It’s harder than you want to think.  At what point does the removal of profit motive damage people?  The idea of product enough surplus profit to provide significant leisure has always been a motivating factor for achievement.  Not the only one but a significant one nonetheless.  

Where should the line be drawn.  A CEO making 5000 times more than the lowest paid employees does seem beyond the pale but should there be different levels of remuneration, and if so, what is and is not acceptable?

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Just now, Tywin et al. said:

So we should have kings who made their name off of brutality?

 King's are a different breed. If they're in power and can hold it, we don't have a choice. 

But if it's fruit of vision, hard work and investing hard earned resources, we should respect their success, or else able people will not risk to apply themselves, and innovation does not grow on trees.

2 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

If some level of profit based upon producing things that provide for basic human needs is acceptable what is that level of profit and how is that level of profit determined?

Guess the market does, the buying habits of you and me.

2 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

Where should the line be drawn.  A CEO making 5000 times more than the lowest paid employees does seem beyond the pale but should there be different levels of remuneration, and if so, what is and is not acceptable?

A CEO is not the owner, if the shareholders are too divided to regulate pay/performance, then they have only themselves to blame.

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3 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

It’s harder than you want to think.  At what point does the removal of profit motive damage people?  The idea of product enough surplus profit to provide significant leisure has always been a motivating factor for achievement.  Not the only one but a significant one nonetheless.  

Where should the line be drawn.  A CEO making 5000 times more than the lowest paid employees does seem beyond the pale but should there be different levels of remuneration, and if so, what is and is not acceptable?

You’re a victim of dogma, Scot. Human beings cannot not take the next evolutionary step until we destroy the concept of money.

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3 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

Where should the line be drawn.  A CEO making 5000 times more than the lowest paid employees does seem beyond the pale but should there be different levels of remuneration, and if so, what is and is not acceptable?

Are you somehow making this into a heap paradox ? 

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Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, Br16 said:

 King's are a different breed. If they're in power and can hold it, we don't have a choice. 

Today’s titans of industry are more powerful than kings. And our choices are largely an illusion.

 

ETA:

I want to expand on this just a bit, since Scot is here.

Do you think you have rights?

Edited by Tywin et al.

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Just now, Tywin et al. said:

Today’s titans of industry are more powerful than kings. And our choices are largely an illusion.

They're only powerful as we are lazy and lovers of ease. One little purchase won't hurt we say, even if we know the poor factory conditions of where it's manufactured. 

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5 minutes ago, Rippounet said:

Are you somehow making this into a heap paradox ? 

I’ve never heard of the “heap” paradox?

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6 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

You’re a victim of dogma, Scot. Human beings cannot not take the next evolutionary step until we destroy the concept of money.

Tywin,

With what should money be replaced?  Does the idea of property disappear as well?

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Posted (edited)
14 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Today’s titans of industry are more powerful than kings. And our choices are largely an illusion.

 

ETA:

I want to expand on this just a bit, since Scot is here.

Do you think you have rights?

A fascinating question.  There are contradictory ideas at play.  

The State has the power to ignore individual rights, but without the State the amalgamated community will, based on studies on stateless societies, also ignore individual rights.  Groups of people will band together to protect one another from other groups and individual identity, in those societies, is largely subsumed into group identity.  

Therefore, for individuals to have rights and importance to society they must exist in a society with a reasonably strong State.  

See, Rule of the Clan: What an Ancient Form of Social Organization Reveals About the Future of Individual Freedom, Mark S. Weiner (2014).

Edited by Ser Scot A Ellison

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