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  1. #1
    Senor Membrane
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    Question Greed Based Systems and Alternatives

    For some time now it has been obvious that capitalism is the best financial system, while democracy is the best governing system. They are both based on human greed. Capitalism is about having some and making more of it. Democracy is about protecting your personal interests.

    This works well most of the time but in some cases both of the systems raise ethical questions. Is it right that capitalism is effectively keeping the poor countries poor? Or, in case of democracy, we can't make drastic changes in environmental policies as it would be a political suicide to, for example, try to pass a law that bans fuel powered cars as personal transportation (you know it is ridiculous to have one person sitting inside a two-ton metal case driving to the store in the next block).

    All the other options seem to have failed, though. So, my question is, do these systems work because they are tapped to one of the basic human emotions? They are not intellectual or subtle, they are based on a very basic self-preservation instinct.

  2. #2
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    Related viewing: Zeitgeist: Addendum

  3. #3
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    Capitalism works at this point in history because of competition, both within and without a system (nation). The cool thing about it is that within successful capitalist countries, there is great wealth disparity, but even the unwealthy don't generally have it that bad. Of course, some do....everywhere.

    Quote Originally Posted by disregard View Post
    Related viewing: Zeitgeist: Addendum
    LOL yeah, let's watch Zeitgeist for some qualified objectivity.

  4. #4
    Per Ardua Metamorphosis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    This works well most of the time but in some cases both of the systems raise ethical questions. Is it right that capitalism is effectively keeping the poor countries poor?
    Capitalism doesn't necessarily keep poor countries poor. If it weren't for the capitalist system, first rate countries would have no incentive to outsource, thus providing no jobs, investment, infrastructure, or education to third world nations.

    The Soviet Union wasn't known for being particularly generous to countries it didn't need.
    "You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit."

    Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office
    than to serve and obey them. - David Hume

  5. #5
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    Don't blame the system, blame the operators. You will NEVER understand the root cause of anything unless you look at who's behind the curtain.

  6. #6
    señor member colmena's Avatar
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    Claudius?

    It's not pretty.
    http://badges.mypersonality.info/badge/0/6/68764.png
    Ti Ne Fi Ni

    -How beautiful, this pale Endymion hour.
    -What are you talking about?
    -Endymion, my dear. A beautiful youth possessed by the moon.
    -Well, forget about him and get to bed.
    -Yes, my dear.

  7. #7
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    Is it right that capitalism is effectively keeping the poor countries poor?
    I'd love to hear how this works.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Metamorphosis View Post
    Capitalism doesn't necessarily keep poor countries poor. If it weren't for the capitalist system, first rate countries would have no incentive to outsource, thus providing no jobs, investment, infrastructure, or education to third world nations.
    I hear you. But, average western citizen lives better than any king during the middle ages. I mean, what standard of living is enough?

    Quote Originally Posted by Risen View Post
    Don't blame the system, blame the operators. You will NEVER understand the root cause of anything unless you look at who's behind the curtain.
    They operate for personal gain (or gain of some group) so, it comes down to greed there also. This is what I mean that it is psychology based. The operators are inclined to behave in certain way because of how the system works.

  9. #9
    Senior Member kuranes's Avatar
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    I think wanting to own things is a fairly primal need, and it is somewhat indulged by Capitalism. ( By that I mean some people within the capitalist system enjoy more feeling of "control" than others, and not that Communism would give you more of a feeling of ownership. )

    It is when we get into the implications that people are owned ( in all but name ) or can be owned period that we run into trouble, of course.

    In the "Conservative Feminism" thread it was mentioned by Peguy that the nuclear family as a primal unit ( fulfilling those needs ) has been around in its current form for so long that history has judged it the best way for individuals to proceed, and continue life etc. I don't think anyone questions that this approach also fits a primal demand. When discussing alternatives in that thread, it seemed the idea was that other perspectives were doomed by not being so tried and true, or primally basic.

    In the thread on cheating, people were discussing different concepts of what "betrayal" means in couples, with some people thinking emotions/intentions were more primal than physicality, and others feeling more "( physical ) possession is nine tenths of the law", to paraphrase it. Possible subconscious feelings of "ownership" here too, with respect to people, but in different ways.

    Of course these descriptions of "ownership" can be looked at in more than one way, with couples proud to tell one another "I'm glad you're 'mine' " and "I do take you for granted, but in a good way. I have faith in you and I know you feel the same about me" etc.

    But "ownership" can obviously be taken in a bad way too, and this has been pointed out in the feminist oriented threads as being something women have been forced into putting up with sometimes over centuries, even by "well meaning" guys versus the issue of generic slavery per se..

    So to rule out feminist alternatives to the old ways of the family by saying that they go against the grain of natural urges is not really accurate, because it pits one urge against another, in a way, with both having been around waaay long enough not to constitute a "flash in the pan" or merely trendy approach, as is sometimes implied by various criticisms. Nobody wants to be "owned". ( K leaves himself open here for claver retort . )

    * ducks *
    "The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them that they are being attacked and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
    Reichsfuhrer Herman Goering at the Nuremburg trials.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    I'd love to hear how this works.
    The big companies can easily dominate any poor country's economy. The money goes over to America or Europe. They pay as few dimes as possible for their cheap materials and manufacturers to make their prices lower for you and me.

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