What's Wrong With You?

 Normally I would keep stuff like this for my "proper" blog and just use Giant Bomb for stuff about videogames but s I want some American reaction, as I am from the UK and can't understand your country's fear of Socialism and socialised healthcare in particular.
 
 I just saw this on Comic Vine

Why so serious?
 ( check out Babs' article at Comic Vine) and while I thought it was funny I also think its message is pretty ridiculous, it basically paints an entire political ideology as violent, destructive and intent on chaos, when in fact socialism is probably the most caring political system, and, as a socialist I was a little offended that a political figure who (as far as I am aware) seems to have made very sound, un-cynical political decisions so far in his tenure as US President.

I also think this raises a larger issue about the United States - What the Hell is so scary about socialism? Why is that Americans seem to have been brainwashed by anti-soviet Cold War propaganda into believing that socialism means having your freedoms restricted and all choice replaced with government control?

Obama's health care reform plans suggest he is looking for a way to provide every American with some form of universal health care, this doesn't mean he is planning to take away insurance from those who have it and make everyone subscribe to a government healthcare system; he just wants to ensure that anyone who can't afford insurance and the extortionate charges from HMOs can still receive some form of medical treatment when they need it. This is a far less drastic plan than the one introduced to the UK by Labour Prime Minister Clement Attlee (in my opinion the best PM this country has ever had) after the Second World War in which he introduced a system that would provide care "from the cradle to the grave".

The NHS is funded by National Insurance which also pays for the State Pension. Every single British citizen must pay this tax based upon their earnings and in return we receive medical care a very good health care system (I'm not saying there aren't problems in the NHS, but it is on the whole a caring, clean and efficient service). This does not mean that there aren't private health care services for those who want more (and can afford it) than the NHS offers, the most successful of which is BUPA.

I can't understand why Americans are scared of a system which means that everyone will be better looked after, people die much younger in the States than anywhere in Western Europe, Canada, New Zealand etc. Americans are scared of having to ask the government for permission before they receive treatment, and having health care tied down with bureaucracy, this simply isn't the case in any other democratic country with a socialised medical system, whereas the current system in America is one which can charge patients for not pre-approving ambulance trips with their insurance companies, and where doctors working for insurance companies are encouraged to deny necessary treatments via monetary incentives.

To me the United States of America's healthcare system is one which looks for any way not to treat people, because treatment costs money and death doesn't. This is appalling America has such advanced medical science, but the truth is that most people can't afford it (the average American now pays more for healthcare per year than the minimum wage - how can you not se a problem in that kind of system?)

One final point - why is socialised medicine in particular so terrifying? Americans already have socialised systems for mail, education, and libraries. These institutions have done nothing but good for the country. Please America embrace Obama's healthcare reforms, they're for your own good.
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Edited by raidingkvatch

 Normally I would keep stuff like this for my "proper" blog and just use Giant Bomb for stuff about videogames but s I want some American reaction, as I am from the UK and can't understand your country's fear of Socialism and socialised healthcare in particular.
 
 I just saw this on Comic Vine

Why so serious?
 ( check out Babs' article at Comic Vine) and while I thought it was funny I also think its message is pretty ridiculous, it basically paints an entire political ideology as violent, destructive and intent on chaos, when in fact socialism is probably the most caring political system, and, as a socialist I was a little offended that a political figure who (as far as I am aware) seems to have made very sound, un-cynical political decisions so far in his tenure as US President.

I also think this raises a larger issue about the United States - What the Hell is so scary about socialism? Why is that Americans seem to have been brainwashed by anti-soviet Cold War propaganda into believing that socialism means having your freedoms restricted and all choice replaced with government control?

Obama's health care reform plans suggest he is looking for a way to provide every American with some form of universal health care, this doesn't mean he is planning to take away insurance from those who have it and make everyone subscribe to a government healthcare system; he just wants to ensure that anyone who can't afford insurance and the extortionate charges from HMOs can still receive some form of medical treatment when they need it. This is a far less drastic plan than the one introduced to the UK by Labour Prime Minister Clement Attlee (in my opinion the best PM this country has ever had) after the Second World War in which he introduced a system that would provide care "from the cradle to the grave".

The NHS is funded by National Insurance which also pays for the State Pension. Every single British citizen must pay this tax based upon their earnings and in return we receive medical care a very good health care system (I'm not saying there aren't problems in the NHS, but it is on the whole a caring, clean and efficient service). This does not mean that there aren't private health care services for those who want more (and can afford it) than the NHS offers, the most successful of which is BUPA.

I can't understand why Americans are scared of a system which means that everyone will be better looked after, people die much younger in the States than anywhere in Western Europe, Canada, New Zealand etc. Americans are scared of having to ask the government for permission before they receive treatment, and having health care tied down with bureaucracy, this simply isn't the case in any other democratic country with a socialised medical system, whereas the current system in America is one which can charge patients for not pre-approving ambulance trips with their insurance companies, and where doctors working for insurance companies are encouraged to deny necessary treatments via monetary incentives.

To me the United States of America's healthcare system is one which looks for any way not to treat people, because treatment costs money and death doesn't. This is appalling America has such advanced medical science, but the truth is that most people can't afford it (the average American now pays more for healthcare per year than the minimum wage - how can you not se a problem in that kind of system?)

One final point - why is socialised medicine in particular so terrifying? Americans already have socialised systems for mail, education, and libraries. These institutions have done nothing but good for the country. Please America embrace Obama's healthcare reforms, they're for your own good.
Posted by EvilTwin

You basically re-asked the same question in this blog three or four times while making it sound like you were raising a new point every time.  I don't know why I felt the need to point that out, but I did. 
 
Anyways, to answer your question from one American's point of view.  I think the fear of socialism and communism is ingrained in many people's minds from a young age here.  Before they're really allowed a chance to understand the meaning of them.  However, I don't think the fear and ignorance is as rampant as it might seem from the outside. 

Posted by raidingkvatch
@EvilTwin: Did I? I wasn't really aware of that, this was pretty much a stream of consciousness. 
I'd like to know what the general public opinion is of Obama's healthcare reforms, and him in general, in America, as most of my American news/politics knowledge comes from watching the Daily Show, which would give a very different opinion to most of the coments I read on Comic Vine.
Posted by EvilTwin

Well, I'm curious, what do you perceive as the difference in opinion between the Daily Show and ComicVine? 

Posted by CitizenKane

"Socialism" is still regarded as a bad word left over from the Cold War days.  What people don't realize is that the United States has been socialist since Taft and the progressive tax system and gotten even more socialist when medicare and medicaid were established with the Social Security Act of 1965.
 
The gist of it is that people still view "socialism" and the big bad red scare from the Cold War.  A vast majority doesn't even know what it means.

Edited by Sir_Hugo_Sherwodywody

I feel very strongly about this argument, living in the UK and having  received NHS support.
 
I was flicking through channels when I  saw this. Look at 4:13-7:21. This is the wealthiest nation on Earth and fifty million people in it have absolutely no healthcare, thats around one in every six Americans. This is on par with third world countries. 

 The only reason that there is a struggle over this bill is because the healthcare industry 'contributes' three million to congress every day. Many of these 'bought' members of congress complain about the cost of the bill, around 1 trillion dollers over the next 10 years (this will be recouped however). Who the hell was complaining when the US lent the banks trillions?
 
Loretta Sanchez, a member of the democratic financial  lobby was interviewed and when asked if she and her lobby were merely slowing the bill for their main doners, the health industry, she said she hadnt seen any of that money. However the reporter interviewing her showed that she had received  'contributions' of $407,939 dollers from the healthcare sector in her career. See that here from 4:00-5:20.  How can you trust what these people are saying when they blatently lie about being effectively bribed. 
 
The sooner America gets free healthcare the better.

Posted by Bigandtasty

In addition to what the guys above said, hard-line Republicans disagree with anything resembling socialism due to two of their ideas: big government is bad, and people should work for their stuff. Both things are true to an extent, but no political or economic ideas will apply to 100% of situations and a lot of hard-line Republicans take it too far.

Posted by RetroIce4

fl;dr and I don't care...

Posted by ryanwho

Socialism has never succeeded in a country as large as the US. I don't think its wrong to be hesitant. People want vastly different things depending on where they are, and that's something hindered by massive government oversight.

Posted by raidingkvatch
@EvilTwin: The difference is that the Daily Show has a left-wing (if not entirely socialist) interpretation of news and current and affairs whereas most of the comments I read on Comic Vine were either apathetic, viewed it as some pro-Obama media conspiracy - saying no one would havve cared if they'd done it about Bush, or had very anti socialist points of view.
Posted by raidingkvatch
@ryanwho: I don't think that is true, there needs to be differentiation between the scoialism of the Labour government in the UK after WWII and Communism, the socialism practised by the Soviet Union and The People's Republic of China; Marx himself rejected the communist ideas being propagated in Rusiia before the rise of the Soviet Union, saying "if they are Marxists, then I am not". 
 
Anyway this is besides the point, I can see that there is no chance of the US becoming a socialist nation, however what Obama is proposing isn't a true nationalised health system, it's an alternative for those who can't get health care from the insurance companies, and a way to fix the health system so that it's primary purpose is what it always should have been, i.e health.
Posted by Video_Game_King

The irony is that the Joker was actually a very capitalist guy. OK, there's that scene where he burns the money, but still, I didn't view him as the socialist that the picture depicted up there.
 
On your original query, I'll just say what's been said before: there's still a bit of the Cold War scare.

Posted by Suicrat

We need to get past political branding and focus on what has really happened. The United States has been a centrally planned economy since 1914. Since that time, the rate of interest has not floated freely in a market based solely on the constraints of supply and demand, it has been set by the central bank. A government entity with nominal 'independence'.
 
Whether or not it is independent doesn't change the fact it is the only setter of time preferences in the U.S. economy, and therefore it is the market, the market is not free. So the brand 'capitalism' applies only to the people living, working, producing, and consuming within the U.S., and not its economic system itself. The term to describe that is either fascism or socialism, depending on how tough you are.
 
If you're an outright pussy, you call it socialism, and hope no one will challenge the power you hold over them.
 
If you think you're tough, you call it fascism, and hide behind the ever-growing influence the government has on your life and every other member of your society.
 
Today, people who think America is a capitalist society are firstly blinded by appearances. Just because a Bank is named after a place, or a group of people, or a given brand, and not the nation doesn't mean it operates in a free market. Just because an oil company makes billions of dollars when the (manipulated) market price of oil goes up does not mean we have free markets.
 
The same is true of healthcare. Yes there are private insurers, and hospitals are (forced by law to be) charities, and not government institutions (or private businesses). But that doesn't mean there is a free market in healthcare. Prices are manipulated by regulation of the insurance industry (which has been driving up the cost of health insurance since the early 70s). Beyond that, Medicare, Medicaid and GWB's Prescription Drug "Benefit" have ballooned to the point where 45 cents of every dollar spent on American healthcare is spent by the government. Costs are ballooning out of control in the healthcare industry, but it's not due to the free market in healtchare that Americans haven't had in decades, it's due to socialism.
 
 Also to the blog poster specifically. Single-payer does not mean healthcare is affordable, it means the costs are hidden in your tax bill. And the NHS is far from an ideal model in the first place.

Edited by raidingkvatch
@Video_Game_King: I thought Heath Ledger's Joker was very anarchistic, but the character in general is somewhere in between capitalism and anarchy, at least that's my opinion.
 
That's pretty much what I though, I just find it incredible that this perception from propaganda is still prevalent, but then again I think the Cold War had a much larger effect on America's psyche than it did on Britain's
 
EDIT: after reading Suicrat's post I will amend what I said the Joker is between anarchistic and fascistic
Posted by Suicrat
@Video_Game_King: WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT HE IS THE ANTITHESIS OF CAPITALISM! (sorry for the caps, but what you said is absolutely fucking insane and so I must address it in capitals)
 
HE STOLE, HE KILLED, HE THREATENED, HE TERRORIZED! HE DIDN'T PRODUCE JACK SHIT! HE WAS A THIEF. HE MAY BE SELF-INTERESTED (as we all are) BUT HIS METHODS WERE NOT CAPITALISTIC, THEY WERE NOT BASED ON PRODUCTIVITY, THEY WERE BASED ON THE USE OF FORCE! NOMINAL "CAPITALISTS" WHO EMPLOY FORCE ARE FASCISTS, FOR THEY TIE THEIR INTERESTS TO YOURS BY NEGATING YOUR INTERESTS IN FURTHERANCE OF THEIRS.
 
Once again, I apologize for the capitals, but referring to the character of The Joker as a "capitalist" is a gross misuse of the word. I would even go so far as to say that it is an inverted use.
Posted by Video_Game_King

I'm basing this off one line in the movie that I stumbled across while looking for proof that is socialist: 
 
If you're good at something, never do it for free
 
That sounds pretty capitalist, right? Or am I complete idiot?

Posted by Suicrat
@Video_Game_King: Once again, that is reflective of his self-interest (a trait possessed by all living things.)
 
It is not reflective of the beliefs he manifests in actions through the films: blowing up buildings: killing people, getting people to kill people for him, robbing banks, and threatening an entire city. 
 
Where is the productivity in any of that? Where is the creation? What wealth did he provide the world in return for the wealth he demanded? There is none to be found.
Posted by Suicrat

The dichotomy between capitalists and socialists do not envelop all of mankind. It is not the case that these are the only two types of people in the world. It is instead the case that these two systems of thought are reflective of problem-solving methods. Capitalism and Socialism are both concerned with the solving of problems.
 
A socialist seeks to solve a problem by socializing the risk of grappling with that problem, and the reward for doing so successfully.
 
A capitalist on the other hand seeks to solve a problem by capitalizing on it, absorbing the risk himself of grappling with that problem, and claiming the reward for solving that problem.
 
The Joker, on the other hand, was concerned with creating problems, not solving him. So he does not enter into this dichotomy.

Posted by raidingkvatch
@Suicrat: Firstly I sadi that the NHS is by no means perfect in my blog, but there are far fewer than a sixth of Britons without any form of healthcare whatsoever.
 As for what you were saying about the US economy and central banking, what free democracy does not have some form of central banking system? Surely you don't believe all of Western society is a fascistic system simply because there are no truly free markets? Goverment intervention does not mean scoialism, nor does it mean fascism. The American economy is run by the rich few who abuse the many in order to make themselves richer, they then move into conservative politicson the cynical basis of "old-fashioned morals" which allow them to make it extremely difficult for those who start with "nothing" to ever really get "anything", neo-conservatives like Cheney, Rumsfeld and the Bush dynasty want to conserve their select group and prevent anyone new from gaining anything out of fear that it would take from what they have.
Posted by Suicrat
@raidingkvatch: Have you noticed that the evil rich motherfuckers you referred to have all employed the political realm to maintain their investments? That is reflective of a fascistic economy.
 
And yes, a unitary interest rate is the opposite of a free market. So any currency based on regional monopoly and a central or federal reserve is by definition the opposite of capitalism.
 
Whether that's socialism or fascism, you can take your pick.
 
Production is no longer the source of immense wealth it was in America for the early part of the 20th and a small part of the late 19th Century. If you can get rich in politics, you are not a capitalist, you are a fascist.
 
And yes, as you have shown, Conservative Democracy is a socially immobile system. Free Market Capitalism, on the other hand is very socially fluid, and social mobility is the hallmark of Capitalism.
 
I think you stated and then negated your own point in the same post, kvatch.
Posted by addictedtopinescent

Pollitacal disscussions on the internet 
they never end well 
 
But to give my opinion, I think there are a lot of misinformed people in every part of the world, either that or they judge things to fast based on rumours, stereotype, negative past experiences and whatnot. That image is great proof, Heath Ledger's joker had fucking nothing to do with socialism, he was hellbent on blowing shit up, which isn't even anarchy, it's just madness, the fact that some assiociate socialism with that type of madness just prooves they're dumbfucks either looking for attention on the internet (and we are giving it to them), or dumbfucks who never took time to think anything trought. 
 
also  
@raidingkvatch said:

 I think the Cold War had a much larger effect on America's psyche than it did on Britain's "

This is true, and I've never once met an american person who didn't think of socialism as an evil thing, but I don't blame them, I've would have been the same if I had been there during the cold war
Posted by dopeman

 @raidingkvatch:  Well first off, Being a socialist you would understand that socialism isn't a politcal system, Right?

Posted by Gunner612

cause you got people like glenn beck doing shit like this. 
 
 

Posted by TheHBK


I will say this over and over again. People cannot be fucking trusted to do whats right for others when there is a buck to be made.  Let free enterprise rule but not if it hurts people.  Seriously, how the fuck is healthcare not already nationalized.  Sure there will be private health care so that rich people can feel better, but come on!  Imagine if your local cops or firefighters charged money or were for profit, you would have to sign a form promising to pay if you need them to stop a crime in your house or put it out if its on fire!  So how the hell can something that is for the people be for profit?  Seriously?  That doesnt fucking make sense, some shit should not be profit and the health of people is definitely one that shouldnt be for profit.

And that asshole Glen Beck is not funny, he really thinks that ripping off Rocky 4 and being sarcastic all the fucking time is funny?  Gimme a fucking break you alcoholic coke addict.  And his show?  So funny he cries?  What a dumbass, nothing funny about it, just scary that someone is as retarded as he is and that people listen to him.

Posted by tekmojo

So many people in foreign countries come to the U.S. to receive fair and safe treatment. Centralized health care for the U.S. means a dismantling of our private sectors. Once you start rationing our health care insurance, there will be few incentives for companies competing with the government run system. 
 
~56% of Americans currently oppose a government run health care system. It's not so much about the government health care system, it's the idea that the government would take control and use its power to run and make day to day decisions with this new system. 
 
What's next? You invite the government to intervene with health care, it's only a matter of time until another reform is made with something else. Rushing to throw this new bill out the door doesn't help either. 
 
As for the UK, I've read of horror stories for senior citizens not receiving any sort of treatment for months. The UK currently has the longest waiting period with 15% of patients having to wait more than six months to wait for treatment. Canada not far behind, but to be fair these countries don't have a problem with paying for the treatments since it's already being heavily taxed.
 
Don't think that once this new bill is in place, we can simply turn around and back out of it if it doesn't work. The same elected politicians will still be in congress, putting this in effect is only going to give them more power and say over everything thing else they plan to change in the near future. 
  
In my opinion, I believe that government health care services can work for some countries, but to think it will work effectively in the U.S. is extremely far fetched.

Posted by RJMacReady

 

Obama has largely just continued bush policies. While he does submit to different interest groups then bush he continues the political paradigm of enhancing market channeling in regards to wealth seekers utilizing the state via rent seeking to maximize profits.

This is exactly the problem with socialism. Under socialism the locus of control of productive capital is centralized. Ignore terms like state or business because they are not useful for a analysis of capitalism vs. socialism via the public choice school of economics. The public choice school calls for an “institutional comparison” approach, tossing all institutions into one box and then analyzing the decision making of each agent and what their response to the present incentive structure is. Many argue this formulation is useless because economics is concerned with self interest and when people return home from work or engage in public service they are not rationally self interest and economic calculus via the individual is not engaged. I think it is becoming increasingly clear practically all behavior must have some economical means and importing evolution into the equation we must realize that selection occurs at the individual level. Even altruistic actions are fundamentally selfish though we are not consciously aware ( see Trivers 71 on reciprocal altruism)

Returning to an earlier point regarding the centrality of an institution. These institutions are essentially monopolies, regardless of their public or private classification. A monopoly is under little pressure to provide good service because competition does not exist. Therefor a monopoly retains its’ revenue stream while providing service that would be better in a competitive market. The monopoly is also insulated from loss because no competators can capture revenue from consumers. This creates moral hazard on part of the monopoly’s managers because they can not necessarily see as easily why their services are sub-optimal from a market perspective.

The Socialist Sweezy , or Marxist rather will argue that voice is superior. He doesn’t address the moral hazard the instititution will face when consumers have no exit. This in regards to Exit vs Voice.

The Public choice analysis and an evolutionary analysis are MY first steps toward a hostile rejection of socialism in any form. Evolution serves as a perfect framework for understanding the pressures of nature and why we must behave in certain ways. Organisms that behave inefficiently will be eliminated from the ecosystem or suffer serious penalties, what are called “fitness losses”. Economics extends to the domain of evolution.

Trivers offers us even more in regards to the efficacy of socialism. In tribal orders cooperation was beneficial. Defection or an individual who refuses to cooperate or contribute would provoke attack or exile of that individual. Why is this? It’s immediately apparent when somebody out of 30 to 100 individuals in not cooperating. Or brains have the memory capacity to police free-loaders under the tribal order, or better yet, create a market evaluation of individuals. As the tribal order yielded to the extended order, global capitalism memory limits where immediately breeched. Social orders also underwent changes in their “population viscosity” (Trivers 71). In this case an individual may freely move so that he may receive aid and never pay it back.   To sum up: “Love doesn’t scale.” I only say this because you talk about compassion. I consider compassion meaningless to the function on an economy. There has to be an enforcement mechanism. Tribes have memory. Modern city states have price signals and defense/arbitrage networks (governments)

Socialism is just the doomed attempt to re-establish a tribal market where people transmit social currency (I help people, you see this, you realize I’m likely to present you aid, my value to you increases), and reject the extended market( relies on price signals to aid the individual in making decisions in regards to transactions).

There are deeper implications to Trivers that I would like to discuss in regards to the egalitarian, and how this individual may fundamentally be extremely deleterious to the autonomy of poor but I’ll ignore that for now. All this sounds very Randian but I think I’m a marginal subjectivist which would put me on the opposite side of the metaphysical/epistemological spectrum as Rand.

There is also the tragedy of the commons. When one multiple individual share an asset in common they realize the benefits of usage, but the costs of usage to the individual are dispersed to others. In this instance it is economically rational for me to deplete this resource because the cost to me is transferred to somebody else. When I own the asset exclusively I realize full benefits but also full costs. It now becomes more expensive to deplete.

Of course you can install a regulator or manager via the state to police this but they themselves don’t realize full benefits so they are subject to capture by business interests and now inequality rears its ugly head. This returns to the notion of Rent seeking or the attempt of firms to avoid costs. The left, I believe, are far too willing to trust that those they elect will not be subject to capture or corruption, but the very system by its nature has to result in this. Here in America we have wood patio treatment companies seeking monopoly protection. This is a essence of the political economy where wealth maximizing agents have options in addition to market based options to obtain profit. They may provide good services by investing capital, or they may attempt to capture a regulator (rent seeking) so that the regulator may shield them from market competition, as Obama has yielded to the auto unions, and is potentially going to yield to GE in regards to cap and trade.

Lastly there is the idea that under socialism we all own so we will all do what’s in our best interest and desirable outcomes under democracy will manifest. This idea is subject to serious attack via public choice theory and voter ignorance research like Converse, and Olson. Voters are largely “rationally ignorant” and there is a large body of research that reveals while democracy is great for anti-dictator, it’s terrible in regards for selecting good economic management or even for assigning blame to an administration that did or did not cause some negative or positive event.

The NHS system is more of an abomination then you reveal as the hospitals are filthy and loaded with MRSA and C.Diff. Rationing is endemic. Certain procedures are often denied because the trust cannot justify their expense. Junior Dr’s where treating like crap, and your importing 3 world educated Dr’s. I’ve seen a few articles where Dr.s are called greedy. Also the patient stacking scandal is a perfect example of how bureaucracy results in absurd and wasteful service.

The idea that America has the Free Market system and all others have socialism is invalid also as we have extensive intrusion not only into our insurance markets (insurers must cover me, a guy for various female maladies). I cannot tailor my insurance; we have a growing unsustainable Medicare/Medicaid. We refuse to undergo tort reform ( my understanding is great Britain did, why ? because the state doesn’t want to get sued) Well in America Dr’s practice defense medicine. This means that when you buy healthcare in America your not buying a dr. but also a lawyer at the same time; no wonder it’s expensive.

All these things consolidate so that I have rejected the idea of communal assets without individual exit or policy insulation. Basically I don’t want socialism of any form unless it’s voluntary, and democracy doesn’t provide a method of this ( See Ken Arrow impossibility theorem). Now this is not to say that I reject socialism for other people. In this regards I’m a voluntarist. I want people to have socialism in fact I’m eager to study how it will work if it’s fully voluntary, however I do not want to be a component in the social order. I would prefer to be exogenous.

Oh and don’t’ forget Ludwig Von Mises’s Economic calculation problem. Socialism is impossible.

Posted by Suicrat
@RJMacReady said:
"  

Obama has largely just continued bush policies. While he does submit to different interest groups then bush he continues the political paradigm of enhancing market channeling in regards to wealth seekers utilizing the state via rent seeking to maximize profits.

This is exactly the problem with socialism. Under socialism the locus of control of productive capital is centralized. Ignore terms like state or business because they are not useful for a analysis of capitalism vs. socialism via the public choice school of economics. The public choice school calls for an “institutional comparison” approach, tossing all institutions into one box and then analyzing the decision making of each agent and what their response to the present incentive structure is. Many argue this formulation is useless because economics is concerned with self interest and when people return home from work or engage in public service they are not rationally self interest and economic calculus via the individual is not engaged. I think it is becoming increasingly clear practically all behavior must have some economical means and importing evolution into the equation we must realize that selection occurs at the individual level. Even altruistic actions are fundamentally selfish though we are not consciously aware ( see Trivers 71 on reciprocal altruism)

Returning to an earlier point regarding the centrality of an institution. These institutions are essentially monopolies, regardless of their public or private classification. A monopoly is under little pressure to provide good service because competition does not exist. Therefor a monopoly retains its’ revenue stream while providing service that would be better in a competitive market. The monopoly is also insulated from loss because no competators can capture revenue from consumers. This creates moral hazard on part of the monopoly’s managers because they can not necessarily see as easily why their services are sub-optimal from a market perspective.

The Socialist Sweezy , or Marxist rather will argue that voice is superior. He doesn’t address the moral hazard the instititution will face when consumers have no exit. This in regards to Exit vs Voice.

The Public choice analysis and an evolutionary analysis are MY first steps toward a hostile rejection of socialism in any form. Evolution serves as a perfect framework for understanding the pressures of nature and why we must behave in certain ways. Organisms that behave inefficiently will be eliminated from the ecosystem or suffer serious penalties, what are called “fitness losses”. Economics extends to the domain of evolution.

Trivers offers us even more in regards to the efficacy of socialism. In tribal orders cooperation was beneficial. Defection or an individual who refuses to cooperate or contribute would provoke attack or exile of that individual. Why is this? It’s immediately apparent when somebody out of 30 to 100 individuals in not cooperating. Or brains have the memory capacity to police free-loaders under the tribal order, or better yet, create a market evaluation of individuals. As the tribal order yielded to the extended order, global capitalism memory limits where immediately breeched. Social orders also underwent changes in their “population viscosity” (Trivers 71). In this case an individual may freely move so that he may receive aid and never pay it back.   To sum up: “Love doesn’t scale.” I only say this because you talk about compassion. I consider compassion meaningless to the function on an economy. There has to be an enforcement mechanism. Tribes have memory. Modern city states have price signals and defense/arbitrage networks (governments)

Socialism is just the doomed attempt to re-establish a tribal market where people transmit social currency (I help people, you see this, you realize I’m likely to present you aid, my value to you increases), and reject the extended market( relies on price signals to aid the individual in making decisions in regards to transactions).

There are deeper implications to Trivers that I would like to discuss in regards to the egalitarian, and how this individual may fundamentally be extremely deleterious to the autonomy of poor but I’ll ignore that for now. All this sounds very Randian but I think I’m a marginal subjectivist which would put me on the opposite side of the metaphysical/epistemological spectrum as Rand.

There is also the tragedy of the commons. When one multiple individual share an asset in common they realize the benefits of usage, but the costs of usage to the individual are dispersed to others. In this instance it is economically rational for me to deplete this resource because the cost to me is transferred to somebody else. When I own the asset exclusively I realize full benefits but also full costs. It now becomes more expensive to deplete.

Of course you can install a regulator or manager via the state to police this but they themselves don’t realize full benefits so they are subject to capture by business interests and now inequality rears its ugly head. This returns to the notion of Rent seeking or the attempt of firms to avoid costs. The left, I believe, are far too willing to trust that those they elect will not be subject to capture or corruption, but the very system by its nature has to result in this. Here in America we have wood patio treatment companies seeking monopoly protection. This is a essence of the political economy where wealth maximizing agents have options in addition to market based options to obtain profit. They may provide good services by investing capital, or they may attempt to capture a regulator (rent seeking) so that the regulator may shield them from market competition, as Obama has yielded to the auto unions, and is potentially going to yield to GE in regards to cap and trade.

Lastly there is the idea that under socialism we all own so we will all do what’s in our best interest and desirable outcomes under democracy will manifest. This idea is subject to serious attack via public choice theory and voter ignorance research like Converse, and Olson. Voters are largely “rationally ignorant” and there is a large body of research that reveals while democracy is great for anti-dictator, it’s terrible in regards for selecting good economic management or even for assigning blame to an administration that did or did not cause some negative or positive event.

The NHS system is more of an abomination then you reveal as the hospitals are filthy and loaded with MRSA and C.Diff. Rationing is endemic. Certain procedures are often denied because the trust cannot justify their expense. Junior Dr’s where treating like crap, and your importing 3 world educated Dr’s. I’ve seen a few articles where Dr.s are called greedy. Also the patient stacking scandal is a perfect example of how bureaucracy results in absurd and wasteful service.

The idea that America has the Free Market system and all others have socialism is invalid also as we have extensive intrusion not only into our insurance markets (insurers must cover me, a guy for various female maladies). I cannot tailor my insurance; we have a growing unsustainable Medicare/Medicaid. We refuse to undergo tort reform ( my understanding is great Britain did, why ? because the state doesn’t want to get sued) Well in America Dr’s practice defense medicine. This means that when you buy healthcare in America your not buying a dr. but also a lawyer at the same time; no wonder it’s expensive.

All these things consolidate so that I have rejected the idea of communal assets without individual exit or policy insulation. Basically I don’t want socialism of any form unless it’s voluntary, and democracy doesn’t provide a method of this ( See Ken Arrow impossibility theorem). Now this is not to say that I reject socialism for other people. In this regards I’m a voluntarist. I want people to have socialism in fact I’m eager to study how it will work if it’s fully voluntary, however I do not want to be a component in the social order. I would prefer to be exogenous.

Oh and don’t’ forget Ludwig Von Mises’s Economic calculation problem. Socialism is impossible.

"
Thank you for your immense insight, RJ. Many interesting points raised, though I would argue the highlighted portion is the most salient.
Edited by RJMacReady

 

  raidingkvatch

As for what you were saying about the US economy and central banking, what free democracy does not have some form of central banking system? Surely you don't believe all of Western society is a fascistic system simply because there are no truly free markets? Goverment intervention does not mean scoialism, nor does it mean fascism. 

I must respond to this.   Central Banking isn’t directly the problem or the category of socialism. It is fractional reserve banking that is at issue. Most countries have this system and undergo periodic controlled inflation to prevent the assumed Keynesian/ Monetarist notion of a deflationary spiral. Such a thing is disputed by the Austrian scholars and a reasonable discussion must ensue because we in America have embarked on unprecedented quantitive easing( money creation), and there is enough evidence to warrant the skepticism that this policy not only isn’t sustainable but is potentially catastrophic. We’ve seen our political elite to go china, those that underwrite our debt, or did, and attempt to leverage them to buy more, but why should they. I don’t want to hold the dollar in fact I’m betting on a dollar implosion.

It is a fact that interest rates are SET.. they are intervened upon by the state. Let me repeat the amount of capital available to entrepreneurs is distorted, modified, altered, by the state. This is the very definition of a socialist act. This is infact socialism, it is intervention. It is not, however, capitalism.   Under capitalism savings alone would determine the rate, this doesn't happen. The FED activly engages in a guessing game with investors and holders of debt. The Fed buys metals and then dumps them on teh market to depress their price.   The setting of the interest rate creates the perception that there are more resources in the economy then do actually exist. This is no different the Fabian era price fixing that tried to get bread to the poor by making bread cheaper then it cost to produce so everbody could afford it. Can you guess what happened there?

Austrian Business cycle theory asserts that it is the cheap money and pump priming by

                        GOVERNMENT INTERVENTION

That creates a boom, high. But when interest rates reset, and they must eventually be moved higher to avoid inflation( or what Keynesians consider inflation as Austrians argue inflation is just more money and not the existence of higher commodity prices) a Bust occurs and all the malinvestment, or ventures that are not sustainable are revealed, and must be purged. The government, in its’ wisdom or it’s SELFISHNESS doesn’t want a bust because bad economic times are bad for the current administration. What is the administration to do? Well create an economic bubble of course. Why when there will be another bust? Because we will be well out of office before that happens.

  raidingkvatch

 
“The American economy is run by the rich few who abuse the many in order to make themselves richer”   

What you’ve said here I believe is essentially true in regards to the words I’ve quoted. I’ve neglected to include “conservative politicians” because “liberal democratic” do the same exact thing. However this is why I do not support socialism in any form. It is socialism that ensures this type of action will continue because it places the control of the economy ( drum roll please) in the hands of a rich few aka the political class.

 
  Suicrat 
no Problem. I believe some on the left believe private property is so abhorrent they would prefer lower standards of living then to live under a capitalist order. I believe they should. My problem enters when they want to use force to integrate me into this hegalian god state

Posted by raidingkvatch
@Suicrat: I think you're being too black and white about the issue, the reason is not a fascistic state is because these people obtain power through wealth and corruption, not because their power is enshrined by law, I was trying to state an unfair balance of power demonstrating that this is not socialism whihc is about equality and neccessity, but it is also not fascism. The very fact we are having this discussion proves it not fascism. I have no fears that I will have armed men in balaclavas storm into my house and take me away for typing, there is some level of fascistic control, but there are other freedoms that we are currently enjoying that prove Western society is not a fascistic society
Posted by raidingkvatch

I am not a proponent of true socialism, I recognise that an entirely socialist system would result in far more inequality, due to the self-interested nature of humanity, however the arguments here seem to support very extreme total adoption of political and econmomic systems, all of which are in some way flawed - there is no perfect system (if I didn't know it is impossible to make it work I would be an advocate of meritocracy). This does not, however, mean that the a step (for the proposals are not to truly to socialise it, but merely to create a system so that poor people don't die quite so early) in the direction of socialised healthcare is in any way a bad thing, surely no one would argue that education should return to being entirely privately funded.]
 
I would also like to say that this is why I love this site, on other websites I receive ignorant responses from ignorant people, here the response has intelligent political discussion from a variety of viewpoints, thank you.

Posted by Suicrat
@raidingkvatch: The hallmarks of fascism are not thought police and summary executions (though that has and does happen in fascistic societies). Fascism is the notion that a view of society as a singular entity is superior to a view as a collection of individuals.
 
And when you collectivize healthcare, you need to view the society that consumes that healthcare as a collective entity as well.
Posted by Suicrat
@RJMacReady: Yeah. Let them have their centrally-planned money supplies, and monopolistic banking entities, and even regulation as a way of channeling behaviour, but let us contractually agree upon an interest rate based on time preferences.
 
The left wants freedom of choice for people who agree with them.
Posted by raidingkvatch

Man this is the most I've thunk for 2 months, it's making me tired

Edited by RJMacReady

 

@ raidingkvatch (  I think you're being too black and white about the issue, the reason is not a fascistic state is because these people obtain power through wealth and corruption, not because their power is enshrined by law, I was trying to state an unfair balance of power demonstrating that this is not socialism whihc is about equality and neccessity, but it is also not fascism. The very fact we are having this discussion proves it not fascism. I have no fears that I will have armed men in balaclavas storm into my house and take me away for typing, there is some level of fascistic control, but there are other freedoms that we are currently enjoying that prove Western society is not a fascistic society

Socialism attempts to obtain equality but it can NEVER do this because it has to FOCUS power on an elite select few.   This is the circular Contradiction of socialism.   It reveals itself to be absolutely absurd though a rather superficial analysis. Let’s make a more equitable society by giving a few political elite extreme power.    I as a libertarian have to reject this idea and the idea that those entrusted are somehow better than the rest of us. Not only do they know better than me but they can be trusted not to become corrupt.   Once you’ve concentrated power into these officials what happens next is you’ve actually increased the opportunity for markets to become unfair because individuals will attempt to obtain favor with these select elite.

Fascism is considered a political system that is ultra right wing and racists. I don’t’ know why they ignore the economic aspects of fascism that are, in fact, socialist. The NAZI party where “national socialists”. While they were racist they believed their socialism should be race based.   They wanted only their country to share in the fruits of their socialism.   Nazi’s did not like Jews, Karl Marx was a Jew. They could not hold him as the father of their political/economic system.

This is where I reject right wing socialism in that it tends to be nationalistic and favors protectionism, that is, trade regulation. I accept Ricardo’s arguments that free trade is always optimal.   Under German fascism profit seeking firms would attempt to buy monopoly privilege from the state and while they control some aspects of production the state directs many aspects. This is because socialism (in its managerial sense) is impossible. If we study USSR we find they were not really communist but Neo-Mercantilist, or essentially fascist. Of course they have grand statues and propaganda of “The people” or “workers” raising red flags but their economy functioned a lot like Nazi’s with monopoly privilege being bought and sold and people being taxed through consumption rather than income.  Obama is all to willing to do the same as I’ve already demonstrated in a previous post, need we say bail out anymore.

 @ raidingkvatch (   I am not a proponent of true socialism, I recognise that an entirely socialist system would result in far more inequality, due to the self-interested nature of humanity, however the arguments here seem to support very extreme total adoption of political and econmomic systems, all of which are in some way flawed  there is no perfect system (if I didn't know it is impossible to make it work I would be an advocate of meritocracy). 

Market anarchy and private property ownership is far better than any collectivized system can and will ever be. It incentivizes innovation, shows us what is wasteful and unneeded, and allows more information within the economy to be discovered and capitalized on because of the decentralized nature. It is also voluntary where as socialism is effectively violence or a system of theft. I can’t see how a system that’s underlying mechanics depend on theft will ever result in Utopia. While property requires threat of violence if property is under threat, all transactions are essentially voluntary and the threat of violence is less concentrated making it much more fair. Socialism ups the promise of violence to too extreme a degree for me to ever accept it.

 @ raidingkvatch ( : This does not, however, mean that the a step (for the proposals are not to truly to socialise it, but merely to create a system so that poor people don't die quite so early) in the direction of socialised healthcare is in any way a bad thing, surely no one would argue that education should return to being entirely privately funded.] 

Yes a step in this direction is bad, I think I’ve already demonstrated why. Once you consolidate the locus of control to a political elite they have the discretion to make all decisions. These decisions may be arbitrary or not. In a market arbitrary and non-desirable decisions are punished via profit losses.   A step towards socialism in any form will be bad because of :

1 tragedy of the commons.

2 loss of profit/loss signaling

3 enhancements of non-market channels to pursue wealth generation. ( ß I cannot emphasize this enough, when you put an elite in charge all you’ve done is change the flow of self interest from using the market to pursue self-interest to using the state to pursue self interest)

Education on all surfaces of the planet should be “private” for all these reasons but especially 3. In America over only 25% of the costs of education go to the student. The rest is used to sustain administrators. All we have done is create meaningless job creation venture that benefits those with political power (lobbies, unions) and now administrators outnumber teachers. In fact, Sweden, a country that has embraced socialism to the extreme has begun to move away from public provision because of these various problems that MUST arise.

I believe the same for roads and postal services in regards to privacy of provision.

 A word on welfare or the poor. ( because that always eventually creeps into this argument and it’s a valid question or argument)

1.Unemployment in some statistical instances includes those that are employed part time.
The important thing to consider when thinking about welfare spending is to divorce yourself from the ethical notions and think of welfare through an economic prism. When the government wishes to go to war it pays Gruman, or Northrop to build jets. When gov. wants to enhance the growth of green industry it subsidizes various companies that produce green products. The result of this economic activity is that there is an eventual response to the subsidy which is INCREASED OUTPUT of jets or of solar panels or eco bulbs etc. Under normal conditions this output would NOT HAVE OCCURED without this buyer (the gov). When the gov presents money to people to either work part time or not work at all they are, in effect, producing a new market for this activity. Inactivity or some daily % of it becomes the OUTPUT. That market will be supplied by individuals that have a greater subjective preference for inactivity then for wealth  (it is subjective and different for all what standards they are willing to accept and what degree of autonomy they are willing to sacrifice). I make NO distinction between OUTPUTS:

(Jet engines, armor plating, incandescent energy saver bulbs, staying at home, not working at all).

All the above are the result of economic output that would not have happened had the state not intervened. That doesn’t’ necessarily mean there are not people that cannot work because of actual infirmities or potentially catastrophic events, but I’ll get to that.


Complicating this is that the market gov creates will never be sated because the existence of this market justifies greater expenditure into the output the market provides;  this then becomes a positive feedback mechanism that will never become satisfied or obtain equilibrium.   It compromises the incentive structure for people to get actual productive skills. Why is this? Wiki Peltzman effect:

The Peltzman effect is the hypothesized tendency of people to react to a safety regulation by increasing other risky behavior, offsetting some or all of the benefit of the regulation. It is named after Sam Peltzman, a professor of Economics at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

E.g. soccer mom in her SUV(provides excessive safety) driving very aggressively(enhances risk) vs. mom in tiny Yugo(low safety) driving more cautiously(attempt to compensate for risk).   From this can we say recipients may act in a deleterious manner in regards to self sustainability and not pursue a means of self improvement.    what this all ends up doing is creating dependence from those that do not need it but are willing to take it because they have a greater preference for inactivity. It's important to consider the modifications people potentially make in regards to accepting increased risk when there are increased amounts of safety provided to people. Aid that provides people the ability to survive at others expense will cause individuals who are eligible for that aid to behave in more risky ways. This means teenagers risking pregnancy. or not obtaining desirable skills for employment. The institutions that create the moral hazard are a contributor to poverty and inequality and a FUNDAMENTAL nexus of the problem; they must be removed.

I’m not saying these people are consciously cheating the system. They are not. They are making economic decisions that destroy their ability to become autonomous.

What about those that truly need aid? It becomes obvious that they are obscured by a fog of those that have made decisions, economic decisions that have made it harder for themselves to obtain autonomy; they have supplied the state with the economic output that is “need”. As charities weed these people out demanding they obtain autonomy and skills those that truly need aid become visible and we can truly help people rather than create the economic product called need. Until then we are destroying many potentially self-sufficient people by ensuring they make choices that reduce their ability to become autonomous.

@ Suicrat 

: Yeah. Let them have their centrally-planned money supplies, and monopolistic banking entities, and even regulation as a way of channeling behaviour, but let us contractually agree upon an interest rate based on time preferences.
 
The left wants freedom of choice for people who agree with them.


It’s awesome to see another person who understands time preferences, especially on a non-economics discussion board.

I’ve become interested in the left as of late, more so progressives then Marxists as communism has been mostly marginalized.   I think the left , or at least progressives believe that money provides autonomy or freedom and that if I have more money then somebody else I have more freedom then them. This is fundamentally true but the problem comes into how this is rectified. They believe that they can take my stuff and give to another, but do not address the negative consequences of this event as if its’ a simple action of taking and giving and nothing more occurs.

I believe that the very act of taking and giving not only affects my behavior as well as the behavior of those that are given. I believe the actions of taking and giving result unintended negative consequences and the taker himself is subject to be captured, in an economic sense, by those with wealth. I don’t see how this paradigm can ever work.

Posted by RJMacReady

addictedtopinescent (This is true, and I've never once met an american person who didn't think of socialism as an evil thing, but I don't blame them, I've would have been the same if I had been there during the cold war

I think socialism is an extremely evil thing and I don’t need to reference anyting that happened during the cold war to justify my reasoning.

Posted by Xeiphyer

I think the main thing with americans is that the older ones that were around during the cold war, view socialism as communism, and as we all know and hear every day, communism is the enemy. Bush's ban on Cuba didn't help things any either. I feel like the american media is trying to indoctrinate everybody into believing that anything other than what they have right now is evil. And thats stupid to think, Capitalism and Democracy are far from a perfect system.
 
I think Obama is doing a great job for the most part, he is ignoring a lot of the stupid bullshit that always arises whenever any type of change is suggested. Adding a bit more socialism to the states is a good thing, just because you are ensuring people will get treated at the hospital when they are dieing doesn't mean you are a socialist and therefore communist country. Jesus.
 
I get that some idiot created that picture in photoshop to try and cause a commotion, but seriously, what does the Joker have to do with socialism? Nothing. I think people should just try listening to what Obama thinks is a good idea, after all he was elected. I hate it how the republicans will automatically vote against everything the Democrats suggest and vice versa. Its so retarded.
 
But hey I'm Canadian. So its not like my thoughts count towards anything anyways. =P

Posted by RJMacReady

 

Bigandtasty In addition to what the guys above said, hard-line Republicans disagree with anything resembling socialism due to two of their ideas: big government is bad, and people should work for their stuff. Both things are true to an extent, but no political or economic ideas will apply to 100% of situations and a lot of hard-line Republicans take it too far.

Republicans  don’t hate socialism. Republicans are all too willing to support protectionism and “American jobs for American workers”. Trade restrictions are socialism.   Also republicans tend to ignore the military industrial complex and corporate welfare, that is, the government picking winners.   Republicans are socialist, they just don’t’ apply it the same way progressives do.

Republicans that want to smash tradition down peoples throats argue that various markets should be eliminated by the state.   Sex trade, abortion, expression of violence and sex on TV.

And of coarse lets’ not forget republicans darkest legacy,   the war on drugs, which has failed and will continue to fail until they realize when the more you finance it the more profitable it is to deal drugs. This is analogous to the failure of the war on poverty, neither can be won.

Republicans subvert markets a lot. Now you know, enjoy their company.

Posted by RJMacReady

Sir_Hugo_Sherwodywody The sooner America gets free healthcare the better.

Healthcare can never be free as it costs to produce healthcare. This very idea of something free that has costs to provide is absurd. The NHS is not free; you pay for that service via taxation. The payment is just separated via miles of bureaucracy from the provision.
 
sorry for the multiple posts i'm not sure if the original posters will see the response unless i do it this way.

Edited by Tireyo

All you can do is wait and see what happens and see if the health care plan will work. Accept it or not, different outcomes each time. :P

Posted by RJMacReady
@Tireyo643: And if it doesn't but you can't scrap it because it employs to many voters and they don't want to lose their jobs? then your stuck with it until the system collapses catastrophically.  
 
The NHS employs .25 of UK's working population. that's a significan't popluation that will never vote for a change in the system because it will deleteriously effect them.
 
Where is the "EXIT STRATEGY" there is none, becaue it's about vote buying.
Posted by Tireyo
@RJMacReady said:
" @Tireyo643: And if it doesn't but you can't scrap it because it employs to many voters and they don't want to lose their jobs? then your stuck with it until the system collapses catastrophically.    The NHS employs .25 of UK's working population. that's a significan't popluation that will never vote for a change in the system because it will deleteriously effect them.  Where is the "EXIT STRATEGY" there is none, becaue it's about vote buying. "
Lol. True.
Posted by Everyones_A_Critic

The word Voldemort is to Hogwarts what The Word Socialism is to America.  
 
Also, this is just going to make people continue thinking Joker was a socialist.....This can't be good.

Posted by LiquidPrince

Joker is an anarchist so the picture doesn't even make sense conceptually.

Posted by Snipzor
@Everyones_A_Critic said:
"

The word Voldemort is to Hogwarts what The Word Socialism is to America.  
 
Also, this is just going to make people continue thinking Joker was a socialist.....This can't be good.

"
Well let us note, that when they cry Voldemort, they do so to a chair. Same with crying about socialism, THERE IS NONE IN AMERICA.
 
Sorry, I never do that. Okay, that's a lie, but I generally last longer than that. The point is that people in North America (I'll say that because the plurality of them are in North America) who cry about socialism in America are... let's say have no understanding of the wide political compass. Or rather they are fark independents, who claim to be intelligent rugged individualists who always vote alongside the most conservative candidate without understanding of their policy. Like Ron Paul actually, they call him a libertarian without knowing anything about his policies. He's about as authoritarian as you can get, but he's just more ignorant about it. 
 
Sorry about the rant, I just exploded there.
Posted by pirate_republic

I just wonder, how is public health care socialism? Like seriously, there are tons of public industries in the states, this is just adding one more.

Edited by RJMacReady
@Snipzor: 


Well let us note, that when they cry Voldemort, they do so to a chair. Same with crying about socialism, THERE IS NONE IN AMERICA.
 

From wiki : Socialism refers to various theories of economic organization advocating state, public or common worker ownership and administration of the means of production.

What is Ownership:  Ownership is the state or fact of exclusive rights and control over property, which may be an object, land/real estate or intellectual property.

If I don’t have exclusive control over my business or property what exactly do I have? Clearly there is an element of socialism in here because I must cede some control to the state and that’s where the administration of my (supposedly) property by the state comes into play. A better term might be 3 way or middle way but the point is that the GOVERNMENT INTERFERES IN MARKET TRANSACTIONS in every state on the planet pretty much. America is certainly no exception.

At the same time pure socialism probably cannot exist, at least in a large geographical region with decentralized knowledge because a centralized apparatus can never act on all available information in a ration fashion, price signals and market mechanisms would be necessary to coordinate scare goods, and the incentive structure for production would be totally inverted imploding the system.


Clearly we have both elements of capitalism and socialism in America, this is indisputable. Now when advocates of collectivism or progressives argue America is totally capitalist they have nothing to stand behind anymore. As a result of this new knowledge the advocate of socialism or collectivism now has to ask himself when a market is unfair or fails in some sense in America to produce a desired result,  is this the result of people freely trading or is this the result of the institution known as government intervening in the market?  If the progressive doesn’t do this he is exposing himself/ herself to being labeled to extremely intellectually dishonest, or something worse.

Posted by RJMacReady
@pirate_republic: 


I just wonder, how is public health care socialism? Like seriously, there are tons of public industries in the states, this is just adding one more.

Payment for care goes to the government and the government then plays eht middle man and decides what services will be available. Eventually the government will have to ration, because there are not infinite resources, when it does the state will be administrating and deciding who gets what care and who dies.

Posted by Snipzor
@RJMacReady: No. I'm not even going to waste my time.
Posted by RJMacReady
@Snipzor said:
" @RJMacReady: No. I'm not even going to waste my time. "
Why not ? At least throw me a bone.
Posted by Snipzor
@RJMacReady said:
" @Snipzor said:
" @RJMacReady: No. I'm not even going to waste my time. "
Why not ? At least throw me a bone. "
No, and I'll tell you why. I've been through this far too many times with tons of right-wing libertarians and I won't bother... until tommorrow when my head and thoughts are clear.
 
Now let me play Braid.
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