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Poll: does socialism promote bad behaviour?

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  • View Poll Results: In your opinion
    Strongly agree
    20.90%
    Agree
    12.69%
    Indifferent
    5.97%
    Disagree
    14.93%
    Strongly disagree
    45.52%

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    The question of socialism versus liberalism and other ideologies is pretty much orthogonal to the question of bad behaviour (crime, etc).

    The question as stated does not have a useful answer.
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    (Original post by wilson_smith)
    The statement that "Socialism isn't socialism without a degree of support for 'state intervention'" is beyond absurb and disregards significant elements of socialist thought; left-communism, anarchism and libertarian socialism at the very minimum.
    I'm pretty sure the OP was not referring to any libertarian strands within socialist thought, and if he was then I'm sure he would've made it obvious, considering that his critique would have been particularly of their libertarian elements - not the collectivist ones. (Anarchism also is not socialism per se, as it is, i. not a collectivist ideology and, ii. is generally not based on involuntary social organization, as socialism is.)

    Of course, 'libertarian' here does not mean the laissez-faire market libertarianism that the word is commonly used for today, but instead refers to socio-political factors. The very term 'libertarian socialism' tells a story by itself. It needs to be qualified by the addition of the prefix 'libertarian' in order for it to become a non-statist ideology. The implication inherent in the name is that the socialism itself does not adhere to libertarian values, and that, in its original form, it works along the statist lines that I detailed. In order for it to be known as 'libertarian socialism', it needs to be modified, and transformed, into something completely different - something that is fully libertarian and freedomist, and barely resembles anything that can be called socialist (at least not according to any definition I know of).

    Indeed, it's oft been said - and I agree - that 'libertarian socialism' is literally a contradiction in terms. That it is virtually indistinguishable from classical anarchism, and should be treated as such. Just adding the word "socialism" to explain a libertarian, non-statist current doesn't make it socialist. Much the same can be said of "left-communism" - the addition of an extra word does not change the intrinsic meaning of the other. This is one of the few points where I agree with the majority of statist socialists, as they too often believe that non-statists can't claim to adhere to socialist principles.
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    (Original post by wilson_smith)
    The statement that "Socialism isn't socialism without a degree of support for 'state intervention'" is beyond absurb and disregards significant elements of socialist thought; left-communism, anarchism and libertarian socialism at the very minimum. Socialism certainly doesn't necessarily equate to state interference, on any interpretation, and in my view - and this is not an isolated view - is inconsistent with such; most contemporary socialist thought derides statism as pseudo-socialist state capitalist, or as managerialist authoritarianism.
    Socialism may or may not necessitate state intervention, that is only part of the issue. What socialism does stipulate ('socialism' here being drawn from the works of Marx) is that the means of production are collectivised - either controlled by the workers or by the state. If the state chooses to intervene collectivising the means of production, would you, as whatever kind of socialist you want to define yourself as, oppose it?
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    (Original post by wilson_smith)



    What does this even mean?
    From what I've researched, socialism as intened, Catalonian Spain, Ukraine, some areas of the US, have all been pretty anti-modern and everyone lives like a grub .... on the necessities.

    The other examples, a centrally planned, quasi-dictator like ****holes.
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    (Original post by Suetonius)
    I'm pretty sure the OP was not referring to any libertarian strands within socialist thought, and if he was then I'm sure he would've made it obvious, considering that his critique would have been particularly of their libertarian elements - not the collectivist ones. (Anarchism also is not socialism per se, as it is, i. not a collectivist ideology and, ii. is generally not based on involuntary social organization, as socialism is.)

    Of course, 'libertarian' here does not mean the laissez-faire market libertarianism that the word is commonly used for today, but instead refers to socio-political factors. The very term 'libertarian socialism' tells a story by itself. It needs to be qualified by the addition of the prefix 'libertarian' in order for it to become a non-statist ideology. The implication inherent in the name is that the socialism itself does not adhere to libertarian values, and that, in its original form, it works along the statist lines that I detailed. In order for it to be known as 'libertarian socialism', it needs to be modified, and transformed, into something completely different - something that is fully libertarian and freedomist, and barely resembles anything that can be called socialist (at least not according to any definition I know of).

    Indeed, it's oft been said - and I agree - that 'libertarian socialism' is literally a contradiction in terms. That it is virtually indistinguishable from classical anarchism, and should be treated as such. Just adding the word "socialism" to explain a libertarian, non-statist current doesn't make it socialist. Much the same can be said of "left-communism" - the addition of an extra word does not change the intrinsic meaning of the other. This is one of the few points where I agree with the majority of statist socialists, as they too often believe that non-statists can't claim to adhere to socialist principles.
    The OP titled this thread ‘does socialism promote bad behaviour’, which without any clarification of further specificity regards all those variants of socialism coming under its header, be it libertarian or not.

    Your etymological and theoretical understanding of socialism seems a little misplaced, to claim – contrary to over two centuries of history and self-definition – that anarchism necessarily doesn’t incorporate socialism is more than a little strange. It's beyond uncontroversial that social anarchism, that is, traditional anarchism, is essentially socialist – i.e. that expounded by the likes of Bakunin, Kropotkin, Goldman, Bookchin. That aside, to make blanket statements about anarchism of the sort you do doesn’t grasp the fact that anarchism is a hugely variant ideology singly defined by no(an)-state(archism).

    To say prefixing ‘socialism’ with ‘libertarian’ is indicative of the fact socialist per se is essentially non-libertarian and, as such, must be distorted to be granted a libertarian understanding, is simply absurd. The prefix simply grants a level of specificity not captured by the mere use of the term ‘socialism’, of which – as is uncontroversial – encompasses many disparate views; your claim is no different from deriding classical liberalism or high liberalism for being non-liberal by reason of requiring qualification beyond ‘liberal’ to approximate their position. Clearly both are liberal views, however represent a more specific set of positions than the mere term ‘liberal’ can capture, as is true for any coherent political philosophical position, including views located in socialism i.e. libertarian socialism or left-communism.

    Being honest, your views seem like unsubstantiated polemics constructing a strawman sufficiently weak and absent in support to argue against; does it not grind against you that the socialism you elaborate doesn’t resonate with most of those actually pronouncing themselves socialist? Or, more uncontroversially, doesn’t capture a significant and historically grounded chunk of socialism?

    I’ve had the tiresome discussion of ‘isn’t libertarian socialism an oxymoron?’ countless times; obviously language is a socially contingent entity evolving alongside historical processes, but the term ‘libertarianism’ was conceived as a socialist concept and is used to denote a historically substantial segment of the non-authoritarian left. That is has since been appropriated by minarchists might confuse the matter but certainly doesn’t erase the meaning – let alone the existence (as you seem to think) – of an extensive body of thought and practice.
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    (Original post by Rhadamanthus)
    Socialism may or may not necessitate state intervention, that is only part of the issue. What socialism does stipulate ('socialism' here being drawn from the works of Marx) is that the means of production are collectivised - either controlled by the workers or by the state. If the state chooses to intervene collectivising the means of production, would you, as whatever kind of socialist you want to define yourself as, oppose it?
    I think the term collectivism is misused in these contexts, and that socialism's essential feature is defined as common ownership of the means of production (in a substantial self-managing sense).

    State socialists claim the meet this bar through state ownership by reason of the state being indirectly controlled through representative democracy - a form of control I regard as tenuous enough to be disregarded as socialist altogether; I think socialism equates to workplace self-management. In fact, many on the left regard state ownership as 'state-capitalism', owing to the fact ownership of the means of production simply shifts to another owner, and workers therein are still subject to the same absence of self-determination and wage-labour; the only thing changing on this analysis, is who holds dictation over their labour.
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    (Original post by prog2djent)
    From what I've researched, socialism as intened, Catalonian Spain, Ukraine, some areas of the US, have all been pretty anti-modern and everyone lives like a grub .... on the necessities.

    The other examples, a centrally planned, quasi-dictator like ****holes.
    Your comments seem to be unhelpfully insubstantial. What did you find in your research?
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    People that say the USSR was socialism isnt true, in the words of leon trotsky 'the horrors (of the regime) came not from socialism, not from communism, but from stalinism. That is the irresponsible despotism of buerocracy over the people'

    But no it is not promote bad behavior. Its only an ideology, there are various other factors within the ideological stratum that dictate 'immoral norms'
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    No.
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    (Original post by Iron Lady)
    What are your thoughts?
    Socialism rewards fecklessness, so in that sense it certainly promotes bad behaviour. In a free market you're only rewarded financially when you perform a valuable service for someone else, socialism is the polar opposite of this. It tells people if they're down and out and have no money the state will provide them with an effort free existence, this incentivises people to then impoverish themselves to get their hands on the cash.

    Socialism is the ideology of idiocy.
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    (Original post by AverageExcellence)
    People that say the USSR was socialism isnt true, in the words of leon trotsky 'the horrors (of the regime) came not from socialism, not from communism, but from stalinism. That is the irresponsible despotism of buerocracy over the people'

    But no it is not promote bad behavior. Its only an ideology, there are various other factors within the ideological stratum that dictate 'immoral norms'
    Name one true socialist state, please. I am rather tired of no true scotsmanning from socialists.
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    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    Name one true socialist state, please. I am rather tired of no true scotsmanning from socialists.
    name one feudalist country? Or slavery based. Do not exist? Right, because technological advantage can only give us capitalism for now. Socialism is not possible right now, nor does feudalism or slavery.

    Before you say something about african tribals and so on, keep in mind that there are many monks who have communism in their villages and other phenomenas.
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    (Original post by Lukfisto)
    name one feudalist country? Or slavery based. Do not exist? Right, because technological advantage can only give us capitalism for now. Socialism is not possible right now, nor does feudalism or slavery.

    Before you say something about african tribals and so on, keep in mind that there are many monks who have communism in their villages and other phenomenas.
    In other words, there are no socialist countries because socialism, as a system, does not work. I have no need to name slavery based or feudalist societies because I am not advocating the use of those systems.
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    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    In other words, there are no socialist countries because socialism, as a system, does not work. I have no need to name slavery based or feudalist societies because I am not advocating the use of those systems.
    There is no wholly capitalist society either.

    Any sensible system will use whatever ideology/system is most appropriate for each subset of said society.
    To pick an example out of the air, the UK has very obvious socialist and capitalist aspects, and it would not be productive to change this to a wholly capitalist or socialist system.
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    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    Name one true socialist state, please. I am rather tired of no true scotsmanning from socialists.
    Theres never been a true socialist regime, its purely ideological, im not a socialist myself im just a political historian. The same could be said for a true functioning communist or capitalist regime in contrast to its fundamental ideologies - all have never fully delivered
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    (Original post by JGR)
    There is no wholly capitalist society either.

    Any sensible system will use whatever ideology/system is most appropriate for each subset of said society.
    To pick an example out of the air, the UK has very obvious socialist and capitalist aspects, and it would not be productive to change this to a wholly capitalist or socialist system.
    My point is that I am tired of people advocating full socialism who use the 'not done properly' excuse to address failures inherent in the socialist idea. I realise this may not be the case in this thread but I do hear this line from socialists alarmingly regularly.
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    It's already been mentioned. But if society were a lot more equal, we'd probably have much lower crime rates. Therefore, if anything, capitalism is the system that promotes bad behaviour.
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    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    It encourages poor behaviour in schools, as those coming from backgrounds where their families have never worked tend to value education less,
    So then make them value education; make it more interesting to them.

    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    seeing no need for it (as they see no need to get a job) and thus do not bother to learn and tend to misbehave in classes.
    Proof?

    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    The parents, also not seeing the value of education (why never using something you were taught at school is something people are proud of I'll never know)
    I'm pretty sure most people use the ability to read and write that they learn from school...

    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    refuse to discipline their children, causing them to be more disruptive.
    Is that really the issue, or is something more complex?; I would say the latter.

    (Original post by chrisawhitmore)
    In general socialism encourages tax avoidance through high tax rates and misspending of taxpayer's money, both of which make people who avoid tax feel justified in doing so.
    Define "misspending of taxpayer's money".
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    (Original post by wilson_smith)
    Your derision of socialism didn't clarify itself as pointed at any particular currents; it simply began as 'socialism invariably', and then proceeded in critique. You can hardly bemoan an accusation claiming you indiscrimminately attacked socialism on the basis of a very narrow conception of it when you failed to specify otherwise - especially when that particular strand you extrapolated your criticism from holds little weight in socialist thought.

    The statement that "Socialism isn't socialism without a degree of support for 'state intervention'" is beyond absurb and disregards significant elements of socialist thought; left-communism, anarchism and libertarian socialism at the very minimum. Socialism certainly doesn't necessarily equate to state interference, on any interpretation, and in my view - and this is not an isolated view - is inconsistent with such; most contemporary socialist thought derides statism as pseudo-socialist state capitalist, or as managerialist authoritarianism.



    What does this even mean?
    You really need to do some research into the ideology you claim to support. Yes, libertarian socialism might reject central planning; but it does support the overthrow of institutions to replace them with direct democracy. Any socialist ideology that rejects centralised planning and power is a small town ideology. If you want it, go and set up New Lanark II. Leave me out of it, though.
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    (Original post by ukip72)
    Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.

    Winston Churchill
    a quote has been correctly attributed to the person who said it... guess that means case closed... :rolleyes:

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