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I like the outcomes some right wingers encourage, greed power but my conscious disagr Watch

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    I like the idea of outcomes the right wing support, power, greed etc though my conscious disagrees. For example on the US healthcare debate if the US government can't afford healthcare or it is not libertarian (doesn't give people choice because apparently businesses are forced to pay for their employees healthcare plans or something) ok fair enough. Though when during the republican primaries for the last US election some right wing Republicans (when one of the candidates were asked if someone is dying on a hospital bed and they cannot afford treatment which would save them because it is outside the scope of medicare) shouted let them die its not my problem. I kind of felt is this really the right thing to do from a human perspective and being a nice guy is this really correct? Some conservatives/right wingers in the US say things in documentaries like I want your money such as "I never got a job from a poor person" or words to that affect see the documentary here http://vimeo.com/28379319

    The benefits look fascinating though when thinking about humanity as a whole. I wonder is serving oneself through influence, lobbying a good thing when others could potentially suffer for example paying less taxes so less public services can get funded. One guy I have/do hero worship depending on if I agree with right wingers or not (something I am still thinking about) is Stephen Schwarzman (As soon as the book on him and his firm (The Blackstone Group) , King Of Capital The Remarkable Rise, Fall And Rise Again Of Stephen Schwarzman and Blackstone By David Carey and John E Morris came out I got it and I keep up to date with the industry he is in, private equity, by reading the latest books on it such as the New Tycoons and reading related websites such as dealbook. Hopefully his memoirs and or autobiography will be released one day) , I have never met the guy so I don't know what he is really like in real life though what fascinated me was the ability to go head long into something and start an institution such as the Blackstone Group (which became the biggest alternative asset manger/ private equity firm in the world by assets) only with one business partner. Also his ability to think big when raising Blackstone's first private equity fund also was inspiring. At the time (1985) only a few companies in the world had a balance sheet of more than a billion dollars yet he convinced his more conservative and experienced partner (Peter Peterson who incidentally believes that some hedge fund managers who make over a billion dollars a year etc "don't know the meaning of enough" and is heavily involved in philanthropy like Schwarzman is as well) that this is achievable
    see video below for him explaining:


    He also explains this in a graduation address from (3:10):



    However some on the left (understandably due to their political views portray him) portray him as someone who "put 102 percent of his interest into the accumulation of more money and via my book on 740 Park Avenue I wanted him to put his devotion to making more money down to 90 percent and do good with the remaining money" though this could be understandable after his meeting with W A Harriman who told him "young man are you independently wealthy? He replied "No Sir I am not" Harriman continued "Well I am the son of a very rich man, which has made an enormous difference that's the reason you are seeing me. If you have any interest in the political world I suggest you become independently wealthy yourself" A left wing documentary that portrayed him ,Park Avenue Money Power and the American Dream (shown below) seemed to cast him in a bad light (the part on him starts at 13:12) though it did say he did devote money to charitable causes near the end of the program (at 55:34). This documentary also states that the right and some of the rich influence politics (at 15:24 onwards).

    One idea that the left say the rich benefit from is lobbying portrayed from 18:15 in Park Avenue Money Power and The American Dream where giving donations to political parties can help them get in power and perhaps help your interests if the political party agrees with policies you want. This seems fantastic for the individual though I have asked myself is lobbying for something that only helps you and a few a good thing?

    The documentary Park Avenue: Money Power and the American Dream is below:
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    Capitalism is freedom.

    Socialism is tyranny.
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    (Original post by Barksy)
    Capitalism is freedom.

    Socialism is tyranny.
    I struggle to see where the freedom lies in trading your life for money, of which without the latter, it is nearly impossible to live, or do anything for that matter.
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    (Original post by Extremotroph)
    I struggle to see where the freedom lies in trading your life for money, of which without the latter, it is nearly impossible to live, or do anything for that matter.
    So trading your life for the good of the state is better how?

    This is going to end up in some long debate about capitalism versus socialism/communism.

    We live in somewhere in the middle.

    These nasty capitalists are some of the most generous philanthropists around. Socialism costs money and is normally promoted by those people who don't have it, or middle class people who espouse socialists and then get nervous when a person of colour moves in next door.

    Both have their advantages, both have their disadvantages.
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    (Original post by Barksy)
    Capitalism is freedom.

    Socialism is tyranny.
    Capitalism is tyranny.

    Socialism is freedom.
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    (Original post by John Stuart Mill)
    Socialism is freedom.
    History begs to differ.
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    (Original post by Barksy)
    History begs to differ.
    Well duh pretty much every socialist country have been authoritarian such as nationalism so of course history would beg to differ because there have not been any democratic, socialist countries. Is authoritarian capitalism freedom? Someone should tell the serfs and slaves...
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    (Original post by John Stuart Mill)
    Capitalism is tyranny.

    Socialism is freedom.
    This is hardly true. I love it when people talk how free people in socialism are, but they haven't ever talked to someone who actually lived in a country with socialism/communism.
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    (Original post by Seb.)
    This is hardly true. I love it when people talk how free people in socialism are, but they haven't ever talked to someone who actually lived in a country with socialism/communism.
    See above... we all live in a socialist country you know we don't live in pure capitalism - the problem with these extreme socialist forms (communism, Marxism) is that they are also usually authoritarian (they can be democratic, also Marx said that an industrial society should be the one to change, heavily agricultural countries such as Russia were not fit for Marxism hence why Stalin quickly changed how the economy operated and killed millions on the process). Also, have you actually talked to someone who lived in the USSR during the cold war? Would be interesting to see what they felt without all of the western propaganda.
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    (Original post by John Stuart Mill)
    Well duh pretty much every socialist country have been authoritarian such as nationalism so of course history would beg to differ because there have not been any democratic, socialist countries.
    Well that should tell you something. Whenever it is tried it sinks into tyranny. Why? Because what you want simply doesn't work. It will happen every time socialism is attempted.

    In science, if a theory suggests one thing, and upon numerous experiments the theory doesn't hold, it's a good chance it's because the theory is ****.

    You socialists are in an insignificant but vocal minority. Most normal people despise socialism, especially those who had the misfortune of living under it. Get over it.
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    (Original post by John Stuart Mill)
    Also, have you actually talked to someone who lived in the USSR during the cold war? Would be interesting to see what they felt without all of the western propaganda.
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    (Original post by John Stuart Mill)
    See above... we all live in a socialist country you know we don't live in pure capitalism - the problem with these extreme socialist forms (communism, Marxism) is that they are also authoritarian. Also, have you actually talked to someone who lived in the USSR during the cold war? Would be interesting to see what they felt without all of the western propaganda.
    Yes, I actually have. I have talked to both people who lived in the USSR and ČSSR - (ČSSR is the Czechoslovak Communist Republic - I am from Slovakia, so that's why I have talked to a lot of these people.)

    The responses from the people from both of these countries were quite similar, although the ones from USSR were even worse, since the communism was even more 'strict' there, let's say.

    Most people in those countries disliked communism, and they disliked the regime. However, people who tried to fight the regime were often sent to prison or uranium mines. (Note - uranium is radioactive so after spending years in those mines people would often die.) Remember, all of that just because of raising your voice agains the regime.
    Also, you have the restrictions of travel. The restrictions of goods - people would often wait in enormous queues just to get foreign goods which arrived once or twice a year.

    Etc.

    However, perhaps the worst of it all, as I was said, was that these communist or socialist regimes weren't all that much about equality. They didn't offer equal opportunities. Children of wealthy officers and people from the government were heavily favoured than those of 'ordinary people'.
    These regimes did not offer equal opportunities. These regimes forced literal equality upon the middle and working class - which were meant to be closer together - again, to force equality, not allow people to be different.

    All these regulations and restrictions led to limitation of personal freedom - limitation of free speech, the right to express yourself (in many ways), the limitation of traveling, and many other activities.
    Most people were unhappy - except those privileged. Most people wanted the regime to fail - except those favoured by the system itself.

    Individuals that were outstanding in their own fields were often held back from going abroad and then coming back home again - because the government wanted to ensure that everyone would be equal and that the group has more rights than the individual - even if this meant stopping progress and success of individuals.


    My grandfather was discriminated and wasn't proclaimed an university professor for more than 20 years, despite being one of the best in his job in the country. Yes, in the country. Do you know why? Because he spoke up against socialism and its negative effects. Even then, people have realised that socialism was not bringing equal opportunities to everyone, in fact it was forcing equality.
    My great uncle almost went for prison for promoting a foreign radio station, since the government restricted it - this radio was only available in certain parts of the country, near the borders. It was restricted in order to ''ensure that everyone was equal''.

    That's why events such as the Velvet revolution happened, that's why people so angry and upset, and finally happy when it was all done.
    Yes, we should have equal opportunities. But we don't need forced equality. Socialism in practice often ignores the first and uses the latter.
    We don't need socialism to have equal opportunities.

    Socialism isn't all that much about freedom and equality as it sometimes seems. Maybe in theory, but not practice.
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    (Original post by Barksy)
    Well that should tell you something. Whenever it is tried it sinks into tyranny. Why? Because what you want simply doesn't work. It will happen every time socialism is attempted.

    In science, if a theory suggests one thing, and upon numerous experiments the theory doesn't hold, it's a good chance it's because the theory is ****.

    You socialists are in an insignificant but vocal minority. Most normal people despise socialism, especially those who had the misfortune of living under it. Get over it.
    The USSR is a poor implementation of Marxism; key word here being Marxism a very extreme form of socialism there's a difference between communism, socialism and Marxism. You're right in science if an experiment is conducted and the hypothesis doesn't support the conclusion it's scrapped; but not if the experiment itself doesn't actually follow the hypothesis; Marx didn't tell people to put them in labour camps or to kill people who disagreed with you, these are Bolshevik values that Lenin and his predecessors held to maintain power. Russia wasn't ready for Marxism, for one it wasn't an industrial society which is what Marx predicted, thus the experiment doesn't meet the criteria it is pretty much fascism and authoritarianism with a socialist economic system; and look economically speaking the USSR was a pretty cheap country to live in, very little crime etc...


    (Original post by Seb.)
    Yes, I actually have. I have talked to both people who lived in the USSR and ČSSR - (ČSSR is the Czechoslovak Communist Republic - I am from Slovakia, so that's why I have talked to a lot of these people.)

    The responses from the people from both of these countries were quite similar, although the ones from USSR were even worse, since the communism was even more 'strict' there, let's say.

    Most people in those countries disliked communism, and they disliked the regime. However, people who tried to fight the regime were often sent to prison or uranium mines. (Note - uranium is radioactive so after spending years in those mines people would often die.) Remember, all of that just because of raising your voice agains the regime.
    Also, you have the restrictions of travel. The restrictions of goods - people would often wait in enormous queues just to get foreign goods which arrived once or twice a year.

    Etc.

    However, perhaps the worst of it all, as I was said, was that these communist or socialist regimes weren't all that much about equality. They didn't offer equal opportunities. Children of wealthy officers and people from the government were heavily favoured than those of 'ordinary people'.
    These regimes did not offer equal opportunities. These regimes forced literal equality upon the middle and working class - which were meant to be closer together - again, to force equality, not allow people to be different.

    All these regulations and restrictions led to limitation of personal freedom - limitation of free speech, the right to express yourself (in many ways), the limitation of traveling, and many other activities.
    Most people were unhappy - except those privileged. Most people wanted the regime to fail - except those favoured by the system itself.

    Individuals that were outstanding in their own fields were often held back from going abroad and then coming back home again - because the government wanted to ensure that everyone would be equal and that the group has more rights than the individual - even if this meant stopping progress and success of individuals.


    My grandfather was discriminated and wasn't proclaimed an university professor for more than 20 years, despite being one of the best in his job in the country. Yes, in the country. Do you know why? Because he spoke up against socialism and its negative effects. Even then, people have realised that socialism was not bringing equal opportunities to everyone, in fact it was forcing equality.
    My great uncle almost went for prison for promoting a foreign radio station, since the government restricted it - this radio was only available in certain parts of the country, near the borders. It was restricted in order to ''ensure that everyone was equal''.

    That's why events such as the Velvet revolution happened, that's why people so angry and upset, and finally happy when it was all done.
    Yes, we should have equal opportunities. But we don't need forced equality. Socialism in practice often ignores the first and uses the latter.
    We don't need socialism to have equal opportunities.

    Socialism isn't all that much about freedom and equality as it sometimes seems. Maybe in theory, but not practice.

    I don't believe it states anywhere in the communist manifesto that people who disagree with you should be put in labour camps - the entire point of communism is to promote economic equality and thus equality in general. I agree the USSR and China are terrible implementations but like I said; these are authoritarian and are extreme forms of socialism (socialism is different to communism and Marxism although you wouldn't think so given the number of times people use them synonymously).

    Socialism, communism and Marxism are not the antithesis of democracy; they are the antithesis of capitalism; capitalism under authoritarian regime is tyrannical as well. I think socialism has a long way to go, and the USSR and China are poor examples.

    Capitalism isn't perfect either though look at the Great Depression, or the current financial crisis that has left many people homeless and in poverty.
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    (Original post by Seb.)
    Maybe in theory, but not practice.
    Precisely.
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    (Original post by John Stuart Mill)
    the entire point of communism is to promote economic equality and thus equality in general.
    Yes. But, why do we need to force equality? Equal opportunities are what is needed. This can be accomplished without socialism.

    And yes, the USSR and China are terrible examples. But is there a good example of a socialist country?
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    (Original post by Seb.)
    Yes. But, why do we need to force equality? Equal opportunities are what is needed. This can be accomplished without socialism.

    And yes, the USSR and China are terrible examples. But is there a good example of a socialist country?
    Most countries are a combination of capitalist and socialist but no I have not seen any pure socialist countries; and for forcing equality socialism doesn't do that it's just that very extreme forms such as communism and Marxism which are actually different lean towards forced economic equality because human beings are in general pretty selfish creatures. Economically go to any poor area and look at the divide between the rich and the poor, in the USA around 1% of the population have millions where as millions or so live just over the border of poverty (i'll try and find these statistics).

    I don't know how accurate these statistics are: http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-fai...n-the-us/21085 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poverty..._United_States
    http://www.npc.umich.edu/poverty/
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    (Original post by John Stuart Mill)
    Economically go to any poor area and look at the divide between the rich and the poor, in the USA around 1% of the population have millions where as millions or so live just over the border of poverty (i'll try and find these statistics).
    Yes, but then it resorts to taking from the rich and giving it to the poor. Although this seems morally correct, think about it:

    Imagine you have a dream that you'll buy yourself a Bugatti one day. (I know, stupid example, but it will do the trick.)
    You work hard all your life. When you're 50, you finally have enough money to buy it - the car, insurance etc.

    And then the government comes and takes a 75% percent tax, because you're rich. Then they give it to someone. Maybe it is someone genuinely disabled, but maybe it is someone who is simply lazy.

    What then? How could that be justified?
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    (Original post by Seb.)
    Yes, but then it resorts to taking from the rich and giving it to the poor. Although this seems morally correct, think about it:

    Imagine you have a dream that you'll buy yourself a Bugatti one day. (I know, stupid example, but it will do the trick.)
    You work hard all your life. When you're 50, you finally have enough money to buy it - the car, insurance etc.

    And then the government comes and takes a 75% percent tax, because you're rich. Then they give it to someone. Maybe it is someone genuinely disabled, but maybe it is someone who is simply lazy.

    What then? How could that be justified?
    Why do you need a Bugatti? How many lives could be saved, I know what point you're trying to make but the point i'm trying to make is about human beings being selfish and when you use a Bugatti as an example it doesn't really work lol. Human beings should only have what they need; the state should own the rest and distribute it equally, if Bugatti was state owned it could be rented could it not.
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    (Original post by John Stuart Mill)
    Why do you need a Bugatti? How many lives could be saved, I know what point you're trying to make but the point i'm trying to make is about human beings being selfish and when you use a Bugatti as an example it doesn't really work lol.
    As I have stated, it was just an example. It could be anything. Don't tell me that you don't have material dreams.
    Everyone has, and it is their right to try and accomplish them.

    One doesn't need a Bugatti. But one can want a Bugatti. And an important part of life is doing things we want; not only those that we need; And this applies in terms of money as well.

    If we only do things we need, how are we different from the most basic species? Life would come down to eating, sleeping and reproducing. This would mean that emotions would, in a way, be eradicated, and I'm sure that we will agree on the fact that this is impossible to do with humans.

    Charity and giving should not be forced upon anyone. If someone wants to be selfish, and he has gained his money from his own labour, no one has the right to take it from him. Whether we like it or not, everyone has the right to be selfish.

    The 'Bugatti' is a thing of something more than surviving. It is basically a fulfillment of a dream, it's entertainment. People need entertainment. It's like with emotional satisfaction. It is needed in order for one to be happy.

    If we resort to limiting this fulfillment, we might as well sell our computers, cars, and every other 'luxury' we don't necessarily need and sell it to charity. So why don't we do that? Why don't we give all the money we don't need to charity?

    Because you don't only buy things you need, you also get the things you want. And that's right.

    Whether it's a £1m car or a £20 book, for example.

    And accomplishing your dreams is hardly selfish, in that respect. And even if it was, we all do it to a certain extent, and we have the right to do it.
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    (Original post by Seb.)
    As I have stated, it was just an example. It could be anything. Don't tell me that you don't have material dreams.
    Everyone has, and it is their right to try and accomplish them.

    Charity and giving should not be forced upon anyone. If someone wants to be selfish, and he has gained his money from his own labour, no one has the right to take it from him. Whether we like it or not, everyone has the right to be selfish.

    The 'Bugatti' is a thing of something more than surviving. It is basically a fulfillment of a dream, it's entertainment. People need entertainment. It's like with emotional satisfaction. It is needed in order for one to be happy.

    If we resort to limiting this fulfillment, we might as well sell our computers, cars, and every other 'luxury' we don't necessarily need and sell it to charity. So why don't we do that? Why don't we give all the money we don't need to charity?

    Because you don't only buy things you need, you also get the things you want. And that's right.

    Whether it's a £1m car or a £20 book, for example.

    And accomplishing your dreams is hardly selfish, in that respect. And even if it was, we all do it to a certain extent, and we have the right to do it.
    Because you don't only buy things you need, you also get the things you want. And that's right.

    Why is that right? Why should I buy an expensive car because I want it at the expense of someone living in poverty; if everything was owned by the state I could get things that I wanted with much less money because it would be distributed by the state, why can't entertainment be distributed by the state? Can the state not build theatres and cinemas, can it not build and sell cars for relatively cheap prices (remember the point of the state is to provide a service not to make a profit like a company), can it not rent things it has access to?

    We have dreams; all of us do, and yet how many achieve our dreams? You say it's not morally correct for people to have their money stolen from them; but what's happening in Spain and Greece right now as a result of capitalism? People are having their pension stolen from them because of the economic crisis.

    We have luxuries at the expense of other countries and other economies the capitalist mentality is take and give; frankly if I sold my computer tomorrow and gave to charity very little would happen; we need a radical transformation of how the economy works on the inside. I would be more then happy to give money to charity that I don't need; the problem is capitalism is unstable and most people will need money for security because of the frequent job losing etc.
 
 
 
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