On the futility of absolutism in capitalist philosphy

Discussion in 'Congress' started by N4mddissent, Oct 21, 2008.

  1. N4mddissent
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    N4mddissent Active Member

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    There has been much discussion about "spreading the wealth" and the benefits and evils of capitalist versus socialist economic philosophy here recently. I wish to express here the limitations in broad terms of extreme capitalist philosophy in America.

    If we imagine economic philosophy on a continuum with absolute free-market capitalism on the right end and absolute egalitarian socialism on the far left, I think we can agree that America as currently stands, is at neither extreme. I maintain that there are inherent limitations to the distance our economy can be pushed to the right end of the scale based upon our representative form of government.

    The further toward the right end of the scale an economic system is pushed, the likelihood of wealth being concentrated in the hands of increasingly smaller groups of people becomes greater. The natural result of this is that an increasingly larger number of people will have less wealth and feel this is an unjust situation. When those feelings of injustice become strong enough, and those numbers of citizens become large enough, they will choose to elect leaders who will push the economy back toward the left end of the continuum toward a less capitalistic economy.

    I believe this is applicable to almost any economy and America's position more on the right end of the scale relative to European nations for example is primarily due to cultural idiosyncracies within our nation and their effects on the political process. Historic attempts to maintain an economy which allowed wealth to accumulate in small numbers in non-representative forms of government have often led to revolution when it reached the breaking point at which large enough numbers felt the situation was unjust. However, in America, I believe that as long as representative government is maintained, we can avoid violent revolution based on economic disparity, but I believe it must also be accepted that attempts to push America toward a more absolute capitalism are eventually futile and may in the end, when reaching the breaking point, could result in a backlash from the majority which pushes us further toward the left than we were originally.

    Just something to consider.
     
  2. N4mddissent
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    N4mddissent Active Member

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    Nothing? I hope that this is because everyone agrees with me. It could be because perhaps my post makes no sense and is ridiculous, in which case I wish someone to criticize it so I may learn from my mistakes. I hope it's not that so few are interested in any topic that doesn't come directly from the respective campaigns or partisan hacks. :(
     
  3. Ravi
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    Ravi Diamond Member

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    but I believe it must also be accepted that attempts to push America toward a more absolute capitalism are eventually futile and may in the end, when reaching the breaking point, could result in a backlash from the majority which pushes us further toward the left than we were originally.

    This is very true. But I have to say, once again, that Obama's comment was taken to mean something it did not mean--apparently by everyone. :doubt:
     
  4. N4mddissent
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    N4mddissent Active Member

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    I know that Obama's comments did not refer to socialism in the extreme. But because of the debate that has been going back and forth spurred by the comment, I thought it would be instructive to point out that attacking any hint of moving more to the left side of the scale, even if it is just an adjusting of the progressive tax system in favor of the bottom at the expense of the top, is ultimately futile since a representative democracy will always be limited in its shift to the right. In the meantime it may fluctuate between points right and left, so some limited left-shifting is to be expected and certainly not worth such an extreme reaction.
     
  5. AVG-JOE
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    AVG-JOE American Mutt Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Absolute pure capitalism requires there to be no government - let the buyer beware and everyone is responsible for their own roads and defense and anything goes in commerce.

    The right wants to restrict commerce that they don't like such as abortion clinics, strip clubs and whore houses which tempt their children...

    The left wants to restrict commerce that they don't like such as auto manufactures and chemical plants which pollute the environment we share...

    If We, The People can just see the value of collecting taxes in order to pay for the roads and infrastructure we all use to make a better life for ourselves, the education our children need to compete in the world and yes, even pay to help keep the streets free from poor beggars who scare away the tourists, we will start to get a handle on human life in the 21st century.

    Along the way we need to decide, as a people, what is an acceptable level of damage to the environment we share and what activities, both commercial and personal, are to be considered 'unacceptable'.

    The fact that we don't have alternatives to fossil fuels is proof that America is not a capitalist society... if we were, the market would have provided these alternatives in the 70's and 80's. Our energy market has too long enjoyed socialist style protection. Now we need socialist style investment, by the people, into alternatives to correct the problem.

    -Joe
     
  6. SwingVoter
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    SwingVoter VIP Member

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    don't see it as a straight line between two points

    GOP Socialism distributes wealth from the future to the present, Dem Socialism distributes it from rich to poor. We'd be better off with flat taxes and balanced budgets, but no one will propose that, but at least with the Dems we get the balanced budgets, so have to give them points for that.

    And still haven't heard a GOPer tell me how using my tax dollars to pay for someone else's prescription drugs isn't Socialism.
     
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  7. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    Probably because it is socialism. We have enough socialism already. How are all the socialist plans working and how popular or efficient are they ? What else would you like to see socialized?
     
  8. AVG-JOE
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    AVG-JOE American Mutt Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Can we get an 'Amen!' on this post?

    -Joe
     

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