Paradox
©
Fisana

Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Politics: is there a system or philosophy you generally like and why?


  • Please log in to reply
121 replies to this topic

#21 Alder Logs

Alder Logs

    ૐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ૐ

  • Moderator
  • 13,417 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 22 February 2017 - 05:10 PM

I think capitalism just inherently affects people's psychology to make them blind to the real cost, worth, value of anything.  The assignation of a token value to the natural world sets up the psychology in people which blinds them to what they destroy for the money.   

 

The cost of a thing is the amount of what I call, "life," which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately, or in the long run."

~Henry David Thoreau

 

I think he was speaking of human life there, but it's becoming painfully evident that it's much more than that.

 

We have a hard time keeping it straight when the masters of the game, the winners you might say, socialize the costs while privatizing the profits.  The conceptual dollar affects our relationship to the natural world.   I don't know how, as things are at present, to take this blinding force out of capitalism, before it won't matter anymore.


Edited by Alder Logs, 22 February 2017 - 05:13 PM.

  • Skywatcher likes this

#22 pharmer

pharmer

    Mycotopiate

  • OG VIP
  • 3,864 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 22 February 2017 - 06:35 PM

but socializing the cost is NOT capitalism.

 

the only entity capable of socializing the cost of anything is a government, or possibly church.

 

otherwise any and all costs are contained in the production of the good and passed along to the purchaser.

 

IDK what it is about capitalism, in the pure form, that people are so willing to misunderstand.

 

the instant the government, or possibly church or any other organization that has that ability, gets between two parties doing business the capitalism is dirtied up in one way or another and ceases to be (what I call ) pure form capitalism.

 

Pure form is as simple as the neighbor kid cutting your lawn for $20 enough times to buy a second mower and put his little brother to work cutting lawns.

 

Regulations and laws about the cost of labor, "humane" working hours, disposal of "waste" grass clippings, etc.... all change the game.

 

That's what libertarianism and anarchism are about: Identifying and trying to eliminate government involvement in private matters.

 

And getting back to the challenge in the OP - that's what I like about libertarianism. It's a no violence, no love for political considerations, way of life (at least the attempt) that weights economic considerations with justice as determined by the two involved parties.



#23 Sidestreet

Sidestreet

    May your tracks be lost...

  • App Administrator
  • 8,477 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 22 February 2017 - 07:21 PM

I understand the urge to glamorize an ideal of pure capitalism, but I feel that without the spiritual evolution Alder is talking about, it would lead us straight back to the equivalent of the feudal system.

 

A lot of what you call "involvement in private matters," I see as hard-won protections now enforced by the government.  Governments do a lot of terrible things but our government also, for example, holds food businesses to minimum quality standards where people were literally being poisoned before.  Sure, you can argue that it has gone too far and the standards are now too strict, or that GMOs will lead to armageddon (I disagree) but back in the day we were literally being sold poison, or maggot-filled meat, or children's cough medicine containing heroin.  And it's not just an old-timey problem.  Just recently a food executive was sentenced to 28 years in prison for his role in a salmonella outbreak that sickened hundreds of people and killed nine.

 

That's just one of many examples.  The market didn't end slavery and it was so profitable I can hardly see how it would have.  The market didn't give us child labor laws or a minimum wage; those government-enforced rules were fought for by civil movements and incorporated into the law, unprofitable as they were.

 

I know as someone espousing anarchy you have a number of reasons that a totally free market would eliminate oppression.  I've heard a few of those reasons and I'll listen to some more if you care to tell them.  But it would all have to be conjecture, because as far as I know there isn't a single free-standing example out there.  I'm not talking about black markets within larger regulated markets.  I'm talking about a totally unregulated market.

 

Actually, I can think of one example of anarchy: pre-civilization.  And what did that lead to?

 

In the end, I think pretty much any political system or economy would work just fine.  All we have to do is get to the point where nobody is willing to subjugate anyone else for his own benefit.  No sweat.


Edited by Sidestreet, 22 February 2017 - 07:26 PM.

  • Skywatcher likes this

#24 Alder Logs

Alder Logs

    ૐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ૐ

  • Moderator
  • 13,417 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 22 February 2017 - 09:26 PM

 

...socializing the cost is NOT capitalism.

 

But that is what happens every time any production impacts the whole of life and its support systems.  Any impact that can be ignored, like the fallout of fracking, for one example, that loss to the rest of us is pure profit to the perpetrators.   You can have your pure capitalism when it finally exists, and what's the best guess of when that will be?

 

 

 

Yeah, bring on the idealized, pure, form of any system, and we'll probably do alright.  

 

Here's a definition of capitalism that I came up with a long time ago.  It's a system where when something is worth more dead than alive, it's killed.   The capitalist will then tell us, if called out or shamed for his actions, that if he hadn't done it, someone else would have. 

 

How much are buffalo hides going for today?  I live in a place that used to be a temperate rain forest with many diverse species of tree and brush.  Many of the trees were the size of redwoods.  It was killed and we're supposed to be happy with monocultured plantations that are being strip-mined every thirty to forty years, and the natural diversity of life herbicided and fungicided.  And we're supposed to say, "Thank you, sir. May I have another?"  

 

Speaking of the OP (with 6 posts), what happened to him?  I'd like to hear from him some more.


Edited by Alder Logs, 22 February 2017 - 09:49 PM.

  • Arathu and Skywatcher like this

#25 Alder Logs

Alder Logs

    ૐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ૐ

  • Moderator
  • 13,417 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 23 February 2017 - 10:13 AM

[Direct Link]



#26 pharmer

pharmer

    Mycotopiate

  • OG VIP
  • 3,864 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 23 February 2017 - 10:59 AM

How about the idea that somebody can do what he damned pleases with his own property? Assuming of course that he's doing nothing to harm another.

 

Because a subset of some larger geopolitical entity is offended that he's killing every living buffalo on his property does not mean he should be shamed or regulated out of killing buffalo. Under the (pure form) capitalist model anyone, everyone can start up his own herd of buffalo and keep them alive, sell them as museum pieces, sell them for food, or dress them up like Pamela Anderson and attempt to breed them himself.

 

We can run around in circles all day finding ways to pick at each others' sacred cows. The reason I prefer libertarianism/anarchism/captialism(pure) is that each of us gets to do what we think best with what is ours. Choices are better than predefined outcomes set by insiders wielding political powers with the odds infinitely better of the group of free people doing what best utilizes the resources at their disposal and their neighbor doing the same.

 

It's when capricious and arbitrary policies predetermine outcomes and negate the possibililty of one groups'  actions offsetting or remediating anothers' that everything gets all messed up. Look at the state of "business" around us today. It's hard to imagine a more messed situation. But it ain't capitalism - at least by any definition I accept. And for what it's worth I'm as disgusted with that model as anyone else.

 

What we see around us, in the sense of wide focus, is Crony Capitalism which I think is better defined as Crony Fascism. That's an ugly idea, but I think it fits.

 

Try the whole capitalism idea a different way. Don't think wide focus and shove all business into a single definition or single caricature. Think of it as you would love. Everybody does it different. Some are good and healthy, some are not. But what it is not is a single system of loving that encompasses everybody in the country in a single government controlled playbook. The idea is too depressing to consider but that's pretty much as I see it today

 

EXCEPT

 

that on small scales love, and capitalism, are practiced correctly all day every day by people we don't notice. I'll offer up the example of the kid cutting the lawn again. Simple, pure, harmless. OR I need some odd metal part made because I can't buy it. I find and contract a blacksmith to make it for me. Who is hurt in this example?

 

And I think that's where we have to draw the line about what capitalism is and is not. As soon as someone is hurt then a contract has been broken or a crime committed and the exchange no longer falls under the definition of capitalism - it's something else.

 

But these days that's too much thinking for most people. It's easier to just throw a large smallpox infected blanket over the idea of captialism because that's the trendy thing to do and, sadly, there are so many examples of the kind of bad behavior so often mis-defined or mis-characterized as capitalism that people are all too willing to assign to capitalism when it is not - by definition.

 

So, to the idea that one should produce an example of an entire nation under a successful system of capitalism I'm calling bullshit. Look to the successful examples of it being done successfully and harmlessly happening every day. Hoping for it to work or fail on a grand scale just ain't going to work because people are people are people. But looking to see it peacefully at work in your daily life is much likelier to get you to truth.


Edited by pharmer, 23 February 2017 - 11:00 AM.

  • Sidestreet likes this

#27 Alder Logs

Alder Logs

    ૐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ૐ

  • Moderator
  • 13,417 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 23 February 2017 - 11:23 AM

How are the scales kept small and the natural progression to monopolies dealt with?  A blacksmith isn't going to hand forge a crankshaft or roller bearing, so some businesses can't happen as a small scale, but won't likely happen in any equitable way under our capitalist model where it's just the big fish eating the small fish in order to get bigger.   Money gets big and buys itself personhood rights and immortality.   Worker owned companies, not dollar owned, offer some hope.  If democracy isn't happening within the engine of production, it isn't going to operate in the greater sphere for long, as we've seen.


Edited by Alder Logs, 23 February 2017 - 11:24 AM.


#28 August West

August West

    Mycotopiate

  • OG VIP
  • 3,468 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 23 February 2017 - 11:30 AM

The market didn't end slavery and it was so profitable I can hardly see how it would have.  

 However, slavery was ended the world over, at least in "civilized" nations, mostly peacefully. Lincoln's concern over the Union above all else helped to ensure that the state would not allow for the same transition in the U.S.

 

The free market also did not enforce slavery and what followed through fugitive slave laws, segregation and "separate but equal." The fact that slavery existed because of state enforcement is almost always left out of the, "at least the government ended slavery" discussion. It reminds me of Harry Browne's description of government in which he explains (paraphrasing) that the government knows how to break your leg, hand you a crutch and say, "see, if it weren't for government, you wouldn't be able to walk."

 

Slavery is the only one I touch on here but if one digs deep into all of your examples it becomes difficult to remove the state from helping to create the problems it is credited with solving. From that angle, it looks as if the state is a fantastic jobs program.


  • Sidestreet likes this

#29 pharmer

pharmer

    Mycotopiate

  • OG VIP
  • 3,864 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 23 February 2017 - 02:05 PM

What does democracy have to do with anything?

 

Democracy is mob rule using the power of the government to force changes. And that ain't one bit different than the crony fascism going on simultaneously with the mob rule now. And neither of those have anything to do with the small business transactions in my examples.

 

Democracy is cover for the virtue of government, which I reject almost always. It's a lovely fairy tale that lets little people feel like they have something to say about what their government is doing to them. In theory democracy is what happens before ideas become laws. After that it's all about the fire and force of government monopoly.

 

 

For the record I'm not saying the whole capitalism thing does scale up without being abused. I'm saying only that in the pure form it's harmless, beneficial, and peaceful.

 

Got a problem with that?


Edited by pharmer, 23 February 2017 - 02:10 PM.


#30 Alder Logs

Alder Logs

    ૐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ૐ

  • Moderator
  • 13,417 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 23 February 2017 - 05:11 PM

Jezuz!  The thread is: Politics: is there a system or philosophy you generally like, and why?

 

Maybe I stepped out of line by not liking, generally, some ideologies that appear to me to have in them the seeds of pathology.  In my sight, they affect my brothers and sisters psychologically, and beyond that, physically, emotionally, and at times, mortally.   I ask, what's to be done about such pathologies, if anything is possible.  For instance, becoming a cop makes a noticeable percentage of those people who do so into power abusers, or at least this occupation attracts those so prone, and then enables them, when .01 percent would be an acceptable level, IMO.  Something else happens to people once they are cops, and that is, they don't often stop the bad cops, so many of them, while not otherwise the bad apples, become lying cowards who won't step up to say anything about what wrongdoings they witness.  Give most of them a few years on the job and they become part of the "us and them" mentality with cops on one side, and scumbags on the other, and the lines of protect and serve are set by power and class.  

 

Living in a culture that values pretty much everything by its monetarily assessed worth, sets up a situation for the real value of too many things to be misunderstood.   When it runs its course, and money becomes the power, though the capital system, that power and those in whom it resides, hires the cops I was just talking about, and cares not a bit for its social shortcomings.   For capital, all the laws are made, including the limited liability of the corporation, by which the kings of capital hide.   Welcome to capitalist enabled Fascism. 

 

Look, we are here and the weight of power is going to move, and it will move more or less by agreements about social norms, and laws and some kind of regulation has become the mode in this time.   The police state is protection for the powerful, who rule by the might of capital.  They can buy anything, including your and my oppression, and by everything we see, they have bought it, and do it. 

 

So, when we give up on democracy, what then; just do it my way?   What will be the way toward some element of equanimity, if there will always be the assholes who fuck it up for you and me, the only two guys who are okay  (unless we start to doubt each other)?   Systems don't work, but systems we'll have. 

 

gallery_131808_1351_8204.jpg

Do we go right, or left?

 

We have to move, or stay where we are.   When personal worth, power and autonomy are settled by our access to capital and property, we will have what we have now.  Is right a good direction for the most of us?


Edited by Alder Logs, 23 February 2017 - 05:21 PM.

  • Sidestreet likes this

#31 pharmer

pharmer

    Mycotopiate

  • OG VIP
  • 3,864 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 23 February 2017 - 06:26 PM

There is no equality on this planet. Maybe in theory, or in  hyperspace, but not down here.

 

I can't run a mile in 6 minutes but many others can. But they'd fuck up a paint job where I'd have it looking like a painting textbook.

 

My neighbor catches fish without bait. I work for hours to catch a single fish. We're not equal.

 

The world is packed full of not equal.

 

etc, etc, etc

 

equality is like fairness - good luck getting any in or out of court. you might get it from a friend but expecting it of a hundred random strangers is the short path to unhappiness. It's a nice thing to aim for but there's a planet full of people who will tell you they don't think they've gotten any.

 

Richville? Is there any fortune made that would pass your standard of purity? If not, who would you put in charge of correcting the impurity?

 

Before he goes to work on the occupant of Richville are you willing to let the same arbiter scatter your possessions to the wind? I mean, what's so virtuous about the way you've accumulated your things? My bet is that your way is no different than mine. We earn things one at a time.

 

But, speaking of political systems and why I like one in particular, under a pure capitalism and libertarian system, there wouldn't be any such arbiter taking from you and me to give to others, and that's why I like the idea - even if it's not the way of the world today.

 

So back to the sign by the side of the road - why only two choices?  I'd like the choice of LeaveMeTheFuckAloneVille and I'll sink or swim on my own merits. But that choice just ain't in front of me, is it?



#32 August West

August West

    Mycotopiate

  • OG VIP
  • 3,468 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 24 February 2017 - 02:00 AM

 

Here's part one:

 

[Direct Link]

I tend to agree with the sentiments of these folks regarding the People's Party choice for President and his endorsements:

 

[Direct Link]


Edited by August West, 24 February 2017 - 02:01 AM.


#33 SteampunkScientist

SteampunkScientist

    Distinguished Mad Scientist

  • OG VIP
  • 3,972 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 03 March 2017 - 08:09 AM

One should read both Rand and Marx together.  As a good Hermetic practitioner, we need to recognize the fact that each of these systems, communism and capitalism in and of themselves can work if the members are free, and never work if they are not.  Getting the purest idea of what the two systems are, stripped of all the "decorations" if you will, is the best way to understand what the system really is. 

 

Ayn Rand described a system of pure capitalism, Karl Marx, of pure communism (and I lump "socialism" with communism, just as I also lump state capitalism with pure capitalism).  There are other thinkers, philosophers and writers of these systems of course, and they should also be studied, but these two could not be more diametrically opposed so I use them for this discussion.

 

Both systems grow, and when they grow, certain individuals will become "leaders" - and this inevitably seems to be the start of the problems...

 

Someone always wants to be on the top.  The old children's game of "King of the Hill" never seems to go away. And here is where it always begins.  Someone wants the "Biggest" store, or someone wants the "Biggest Army" or someone (or everyone) wants more, more, more...

 

There is no system defined by humans, that will work as long as humans have a tendency to always want more than enough.  More than they need.  And the thing is, if people are to be free, how then are they to be free from this pernicious desire to always want more?  And why do we always want more?

 

I suspect that the actual cause is the fear of death.  Our innate fear of death means we have limited time.  What we really want is Life!

 

But we "know" (or we fear) in some visceral way that we cannot get more time, and we also do not know how much time we have left.  This, I believe, drives us to try to get "something"....anything, to fill that dark void of fear.

 

But many of us on this forum no longer experience that fear...because we have personally visited that void, and found it to not be the fearsome thing we have had drilled into our heads and hearts.  And because of that many of us have conquered that fear and no longer strive for endless piles of money and things.

 

But for the vast majority of human beings, this is not the case.  Look at the recent stories of Kim Jong Un, who just had his half brother assassinated along with several others - he is a little fat boy who is afraid.  He seeks to destroy the thing he is afraid of, without any understanding of what it is, and his people pay the price.

 

I see dire things on the horizon.  I read a vast array of both "conservative" as well as "liberal" blogs, books, etc as I know many of you do, and the things I am reading are really giving me pause.  Look at just these few links here:

 

http://www.salon.com..._again_partner/

https://theconjureho...-revolutionary/

http://humanevents.c...ness-runs-deep/

 

There is an interesting pattern here: Both the Left and the Right no longer seem to trust their own "leaders"! And they are both getting militant,

 

This is not a good sign. When we look at history and see this sort of thing occurring, where the idea of human freedom is swept under the rug, and "being in the correct crowd" of the moment is more important, things get dicey real fast for those who think deeply.  In fact my writing this post on this forum with other individuals who I highly respect could get us killed real fast.

 

Something to ponder in a world where "pondering" things is considered a "thought crime".

 

I am very concerned for all of your well being as well as my own, and my family, as I am sure all of you are. I have to confess I do not know what the solution is, but my reading of history suggests that there will be much trouble in the months and years ahead...wars in the streets, governmental coups, who knows?

 

The thing is who can claim that the corner mom & pop grocery store is a bad thing? Yet that is capitalism.

Who can claim that a community of like minded hippies minding their own business and living communally is a bad thing? Yet that is communism.  Who thinks it is a bad thing when the hippy commune makes food purchases at the corner grocery store?  Or the corner grocery store buys produce to sell from the hippy commune?

 

These are just life philosophies that seem to work, and even work together well when they are small and when freedom is respected.

 

But they do not scale well, do they? When these systems get large, and "leaders" take charge (however they do) things begin to fall apart.  Freedoms are oppressed.  Fights begin, people are killed, grudges are solidified.  "Racism" and "Nationalism" take hold in the hearts of people - and now those who once got along fine, find themselves on opposite sides of stupid fences we errected for no other purpose then to "keep them out"...

 

It is an interesting thought experiment to image what humans would do if we were to be attacked by an alien race from another planet.  I believe all these squabbles between us would be put on hold suddenly as we came together to fight the new "Them".

 

But here is a deeper question.  What if we were visited by a peaceful alien race?  Would we still want to attack "Them"?  I suspect that many would, sad to say.


Edited by SteampunkScientist, 03 March 2017 - 08:13 AM.

  • Sidestreet, Skywatcher and Alder Logs like this

#34 Alder Logs

Alder Logs

    ૐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ૐ

  • Moderator
  • 13,417 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 03 March 2017 - 10:31 AM

Here's some solid proof that the Dems have become the other side, and their only selling point is, "we're not the other side."

 

[Direct Link]


  • SteampunkScientist likes this

#35 SteampunkScientist

SteampunkScientist

    Distinguished Mad Scientist

  • OG VIP
  • 3,972 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 03 March 2017 - 12:54 PM

They have both become the "other side" with respect to us... ultimately I think many in government view the rest of us the same way the farmer views his livestock.


  • Skywatcher and Alder Logs like this

#36 Alder Logs

Alder Logs

    ૐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ૐ

  • Moderator
  • 13,417 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 03 March 2017 - 01:05 PM

It's a fact that in saying, "We're not Trump," Genghis Khan could make the same claim. 



#37 SteampunkScientist

SteampunkScientist

    Distinguished Mad Scientist

  • OG VIP
  • 3,972 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 03 March 2017 - 01:18 PM

Anarchy as a superior form of governance: https://www.libertar...ent-to-anarchy/



#38 Juthro

Juthro

    dope smoking hillbilly

  • OG VIP
  • 7,454 posts

Donator


Awards Bar:

Posted 03 March 2017 - 01:59 PM

:)

anarchists association.jpg
  • SteampunkScientist likes this

#39 breadandmycelium

breadandmycelium

    Mycophiliac

  • Free Member
  • 13 posts

Posted 03 March 2017 - 02:51 PM

I think a lot of people want there to be "someone" or "something" in terms of a higher power acting on society that makes our world more just. I don't think that's realistic. The only way our world is going to change is if every one of us changes it.

Now as far as people thinking justice is impossible, or that our world is already a just one, just look at the millions of pounds of food thrown out every year in the US alone. It's dumped in dumpsters still perfectly edible because of an aspect of the market; people will be less likely to *pay* for food that looks less than perfect. They will eat it, depending when in the week you go and when they get their shipments, most restaurants sell food that would be thrown out in a grocery store. Yet there's millions of children starving every year. We clearly don't have an issue of food scarcity, so the question is, why don't those kids get fed? If we listen to the capitalist it's because they can't afford to transport food to and from impoverished regions for free to feed people. The issue is, that neglects that food production is generally large enough to sustain populations locally in developing countries, but food production is largely owned by large capitalist firms, who would rather destroy food to maintain a supply and demand curve that yields them a solid profit than give it away to people who would otherwise starve or steal their food.

Not to mention the other multitude of social issues that arise out of capitalisms need to divide us in order to put worker against worker, to prevent any kind of organized workers resistance to exploitation by owners.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Edited by breadandmycelium, 03 March 2017 - 02:51 PM.

  • Alder Logs and SteampunkScientist like this

#40 August West

August West

    Mycotopiate

  • OG VIP
  • 3,468 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 03 March 2017 - 03:16 PM

I notice the state is entirely left out of your food critique. In many locations, it's not simply an aspect of "the market" that causes perfectly viable food to be thrown out. It's often demanded by local ordinances. In places where it is coming more from the store's bottom line, that paradigm too is affected by state subsidies of all the major components of the food industry.

 

Where food production in developing countries is concerned, those large corporate producers make deals with states in order to achieve their hegemony. To say nothing of dictatorial governments who keep their people impoverished with the support of more developed states.

 

It's impossible to separate "capitalism" from states. And in the middle of it all are individuals making decisions that keep the status quo going.


  • Skywatcher, SteampunkScientist and breadandmycelium like this




Like Mycotopia? Become a member today!