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Thread: Socialism

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    Certified Sausage Smoker Elfboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    The problem is, capitalism also does not work without perfectly selfish human beings. Otherwise, the selfish can simply exploit the altruistic, and this represents a breakdown in the system.
    capitalism doesn't require selfish human beings, quite the opposite at times. capitalism requires people who place their own needs as highest priority and place the needs of others (while still important) after that. in a capitalist society (not government sponsored corporatism), doing what is lawful (ie not killing, not stealing etc) and in your best interest will still benefit others. once people begin to feel secure, happy, successful and fullfilled, they tend to give back. capitalism gives everyone the opportunity to have such fullfillment.

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    Dreaming the life onemoretime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elfboy View Post
    capitalism doesn't require selfish human beings, quite the opposite at times. capitalism requires people who place their own needs as highest priority and place the needs of others (while still important) after that. in a capitalist society (not government sponsored corporatism), doing what is lawful (ie not killing, not stealing etc) and in your best interest will still benefit others. once people begin to feel secure, happy, successful and fullfilled, they tend to give back. capitalism gives everyone the opportunity to have such fullfillment.
    Which means that if the needs of others gets in the way of your own needs, you've got to either disregard the needs of others or act contrary to those needs. When both do that, it's called competition. When only one does that, it's called exploitation.

  3. #143
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huxley3112 View Post
    No.. socialism doesn't work. It's a nice idea though!

    When you implement “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need,” magically, everyone starts having quite a lot of need and very little ability.
    I agree. The military, interstate highway system, police, and fire departments are all jokes.
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

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    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elfboy View Post
    capitalism doesn't require selfish human beings, quite the opposite at times. capitalism requires people who place their own needs as highest priority and place the needs of others (while still important) after that. in a capitalist society (not government sponsored corporatism), doing what is lawful (ie not killing, not stealing etc) and in your best interest will still benefit others. once people begin to feel secure, happy, successful and fullfilled, they tend to give back. capitalism gives everyone the opportunity to have such fullfillment.
    This not correct (and neither is onemoretime's statement). You're ignoring (or maybe you're just ignorant of) much of the philosophy behind classical economics. According to Adam Smith, capitalism requires moral individuals. Capitalistic philosophy in the US has diverged far from its roots, so far that it's now mostly nonsense (catch phrases and talking points).
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

  5. #145
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    Of course Capitalism requires moral individuals. That's what makes extreme far right libertarians just as idealistic as communists.

    Both will fail because all people aren't that moral. Both theories in their extreme form defy human nature and reality.

    My grandfather was a staunch Republican yet had a huge hand in working for the expansion of highways/roads/bridges in WV during the 1950's and beyond.

    While I dislike the social limitations that a certain kind of Republicans put on people, I still think in their moderate form they're much more sensible and realistic than free-market libertarians.

  6. #146
    Dreaming the life onemoretime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    This not correct (and neither is onemoretime's statement). You're ignoring (or maybe you're just ignorant of) much of the philosophy behind classical economics. According to Adam Smith, capitalism requires moral individuals. Capitalistic philosophy in the US has diverged far from its roots, so far that it's now mostly nonsense (catch phrases and talking points).
    That was Smith's conception of how capitalism worked. I'm more talking about what the historical reality of the system is.

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    Certified Sausage Smoker Elfboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    This not correct (and neither is onemoretime's statement). You're ignoring (or maybe you're just ignorant of) much of the philosophy behind classical economics. According to Adam Smith, capitalism requires moral individuals. Capitalistic philosophy in the US has diverged far from its roots, so far that it's now mostly nonsense (catch phrases and talking points).
    actually I am aware of this, I just stated it less directly

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    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    Which means that if the needs of others gets in the way of your own needs, you've got to either disregard the needs of others or act contrary to those needs. When both do that, it's called competition. When only one does that, it's called exploitation.
    precisely, which is why I believe acting in one's own self interest first is not only economically feasible, but morally correct. Likewise, I actually believe sacrificing your own needs for the sake of others is not only foolish, but immoral. a society that places the needs of the people above the individual will fall into a wealthfare state, drive up entitlement spending, disincentivize productivity, drive productive individuals away, and eventually lead to economic collapse. that's not to say I think giving is bad, thinking about others is bad or being motivated to serve others is bad, I think these are all wonderful things, but doing them at the wrong time does more harm than good. the only way to foster REAL economic growth is to make sure that both parties win as in a business deal.
    on the same note, that's not to say that I believe people doing harm to others should be allowed, I actually support strong legal reprecutions for such behavior (dealing harm to others needs to be SERIOUSLY more dissincentivized than it is today). I also support more safety regulations on factories and workplace environments than most rightist for this very reason and stricter food processing regulations. that being said, I think this should be done at the state level to prevent the overt federal bureaucracy that exists today in this sector, but I don't think the idea of ensuring a safe work environment and holding businesses accountable for damage they cause goes against capitalism at all

  9. #149
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    That was Smith's conception of how capitalism worked. I'm more talking about what the historical reality of the system is.
    I think that his philosophy was applicable to his time, but it needs some adjustments to be applicable to ours. Not nearly as much business is conducted face-to-face, today, which makes it a lot easier (morally speaking) to take advantage of others. It's harder to steal candy from a baby if you have to look the baby in the face.
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

  10. #150
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    I believe in a blend between capitalism and socialism, or a social democracy, and I love what Sweden and Scandanavian countries have to offer. I also like the structure of the UK for this reason, because while they are capitalist they are more of a social democracy than the United States.

    However, I like many of the freedoms in the United States, and I believe we could potentially have more freedom. It's just that I don't think free-market capitalism is the answer any more than straight up socialism or communism.

    I think that inter-dependence is a perfectly natural and rational way to live. The world is not as black and white as "either I live for myself or I live for you."

    Living for yourself and helping to maintain your surrounding community is actually quite sensible and self-serving. You never know when you may become ill, injured, old, senile, or unemployed yourself. No one person is all-powerful, though a few are more lucky.

    It also decreases crime, ignorance, and disease to think of your community, which also helps yourself in the long run.

    The problem is over-simplifying "me vs. others."

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