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Thread: Socialism

  1. #211
    Senior Member Santosha's Avatar
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    Capitalism, true Laissez-faire capitalism is the way to go.

    Despite my opinion that socialism is immoral and inherently wrong.. against human nature..

    MIXED economies or Mercantilism is not much better. Why? Because a mixed economy is a half way house. It is not helpful in achieving optimal use of national resources. The mixed economy suffers from the drawbacks of both the capitalism and the socialism. Mixed economy seldom achieved progress. It suffers from continues back wardness. Under mixed economy wastage of different types occurs in the economy.

    Here is an example of WHY mixed economies don't work...

    HONOLULU – Hawaii is dropping the only state universal child health care program in the country just seven months after it launched.

    Gov. Linda Lingle’s administration cited budget shortfalls and other available health care options for eliminating funding for the program. A state official said families were dropping private coverage so their children would be eligible for the subsidized plan.

    “People who were already able to afford health care began to stop paying for it so they could get it for free,” said Dr. Kenny Fink, the administrator for Med-QUEST at the Department of Human Services. “I don’t believe that was the intent of the program.”



    Basically, this is an illustration of why mixed economies don’t work effectively. If the government guarantees a good or service of certain value to those who don’t have it, it will be exploited. More broadly, any entitlement system will be exploited because it’s simply economically stupid to do otherwise. If you can foist the cost of anything you need onto someone else and you don’t notice or have no moral qualms about the force involved, why wouldn’t you?

    In terms of health care costs, the long-run result of this kind of health care plan is a distribution of health care costs precisely along the lines of the discriminatory tax system. In other words, what you end up “paying” for healthcare is a direct function of your politically-determined tax burden, not your level of health care consumption. And where individuals can consume without cost or consequence to themselves, there will naturally be an explosion of cost and consequence.

    So what then must you do to preserve the system? Regulate individuals’ behavior? If smokers have to pay for their own healthcare, that’s an incentive against smoking. If someone else is going to pay the difference between the smoker’s tax contribution and their health care needs, then that’s simply going to fail to discourage smoking. OK, so regulate smoking. Tax cigarettes.

    But then what about dietary considerations? Shall we regulate that as well, since people’s dietary decisions ultimately play a large role in determining their lifetime health care costs? Sure; regulate that, too.

    What about genetic considerations? If some couples don’t have to pay for healthcare on their first two genetically ailing children, then they can afford two more that they otherwise wouldn’t have had if they had to foot their entire healthcare bill. Regulate that, as well?

    It is clear that with an entitlement system like health care, one is put in the ethically compromising position of deciding what’s more important: sustaining the system of entitlements’ ability to meet its obligations, or allowing individuals to live their lives with their own bodies how they please. The two form a source of constant tension. And it’s not surprising: the former is socialism, the latter is the free market.

    Economically, for reasons like the the craziness above, mixed economies simply are not sustainable in the long run. The moment a system of entitlements is put in place, incentives for good behavior go down for those who don’t have to pay for the consequences of their actions. This results in the system becoming costlier, to the point where it can not be sustained as is. At that point, there are two options: end the system or try to legislate cost-reducing good behavior (or against cost-raising bad behavior). Forgoing option 1, which Hawaii quite wisely took, we must then ask the question: does legislating good behavior work? Further, is it possible to not only legislate, but enforce every behavior which has a significant effect on healthcare costs? And if it is possible, are the costs of doing so even higher than the costs of letting bad behavior grow freely?
    Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun - Watts

  2. #212
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Huxley, pretty much the entire first world has more of what you'd call "socialist" elements to a much greater degree than the USA. They also offer the best living standards in the world, and their economies are not even in bad shape, for the most part, no less catastrophic shape. You consistently fail to explain this. And indeed, if the system you propose is so wonderful, why is there not yet one nation on earth reaping its benefits, when if what you are saying is true that country must be a far more prosperous and livable place than they highly mixed economies of the current first world nations?

    And have you ever studied sociology?
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  3. #213
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huxley3112 View Post
    3) Capitalism doesn’t maintain lords and serfs.


    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.
    Exactly.

  4. #214
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architectonic View Post
    I may have misunderstood your point, but as it stands, that appears to be a gross oversimplification, since it misses the fundamental aspect of politics. It is not merely about whether a state or a private corporation controls a particular aspect of the economy. Or public rights for that matter.
    Being that I am describing two poles of a continuum for applying to single policies, it will naturally be simple. Also note that I used terms a bit more general than a state vs a private corporation, and that I did not merely define these two by control but also intent, as I noted one was driven more by a direct desire to have some impact on society at large, while the other was based on the sum of individuals seeking to profit for themselves.

    That being said, I'm not sure what you mean by the "fundamental aspect of politics".
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  5. #215
    Senior Member Santosha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Huxley, pretty much the entire first world has more of what you'd call "socialist" elements to a much greater degree than the USA. They also offer the best living standards in the world, and their economies are not even in bad shape, for the most part, no less catastrophic shape. You consistently fail to explain this. And indeed, if the system you propose is so wonderful, why is there not yet one nation on earth reaping its benefits, when if what you are saying is true that country must be a far more prosperous and livable place than they highly mixed economies of the current first world nations?

    And have you ever studied sociology?
    Meh.. I'm going to go have some fun right now.. so I will touch back on these questions later (later 2nite maybe).. BUt for that last question.. ya.. I bounced between a sociology major, psychology major, and social work for most of my twenties. I was even a bleeding heart liberal for some time, a passionate advocate for the cradle to grave welfare state. Last year I worked in a marketing position on the TIcket to Work self sufficiency program that helped enable people collecting disability to find employment. The program was outsourced to a private company because it was running a 10 year loss under government administration.. and they actually thought if it was marketed better that people would want to get off the dole and find a job <----- none of this has SHIT to do with the topic at hand, but now I'm interested... what is your experience with social programs?
    Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun - Watts

  6. #216
    The Eighth Colour Octarine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elfboy View Post
    I believe anyone is capable of becoming wealthy and successful. nothing is predetermined.
    So someone who has a disability that prevents them from having the physical functioning to hold down employment can become wealthy and successful?

  7. #217
    Senior Member Santosha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architectonic View Post
    So someone who has a disability that prevents them from having the physical functioning to hold down employment can become wealthy and successful?
    Stephen Hawking
    Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun - Watts

  8. #218
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huxley3112 View Post
    Meh.. I'm going to go have some fun right now.. so I will touch back on these questions later (later 2nite maybe).. BUt for that last question.. ya.. I bounced between a sociology major, psychology major, and social work for most of my twenties. I was even a bleeding heart liberal for some time, a passionate advocate for the cradle to grave welfare state. Last year I worked in a marketing position on the TIcket to Work self sufficiency program that helped enable people collecting disability to find employment. The program was outsourced to a private company because it was running a 10 year loss under government administration.. and they actually thought if it was marketed better that people would want to get off the dole and find a job <----- none of this has SHIT to do with the topic at hand, but now I'm interested... what is your experience with social programs?
    So, as a one time sociology major, how did you manage to unlearn so much of what it must have taught you?

    I came from a very poor family that had received welfare payments for some time. I have not worked in the business of social programs, however.
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  9. #219
    Sniffles
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    References to feudalism don't really add anything to this discussion.

  10. #220
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huxley3112 View Post
    Stephen Hawking
    An exception doesn't prove the rule. Everyone else with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis as not been so lucky. Then again, you probably know nothing about that disease.

    Hawking is at least lucky enough to have full functioning of his brain. Some have symptoms such as fatigue or headaches that are so severe, that they have no chance as an academic. Not to mention autism and the like. Oh and as a whole, these diseases add up to well over 1% of the population.

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