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View Full Version : Wee Wee, I Challenge You To A Debate



NJCardFan
10-16-2010, 07:47 PM
Wee Wee, let's stop with the bullshit and let's debate the issues. I hereby challenge you to a debate on the issues of economics and anything else and I invite all here to ask the questions you want answered and I request that one of the mods moderate this debate. So, Wee Wee, feel like putting your money where your mouth is? The questions won't be a gang up on either one of us but questions like ones asked in a regular debate. The questions will be put to either one of us and after one answers, the other can rebut.

Wei Wu Wei
10-17-2010, 12:10 PM
Don't you declare every week that you have me on ignore?

Alright buddy sure thing fire away.

Wei Wu Wei
10-17-2010, 12:29 PM
Whatever you want to talk about buddy.

marv
10-17-2010, 05:26 PM
...I invite all here to ask the questions you want answered...
Okay,

Two questions for wee wee...
1. What is the source of wealth?

2. How is wealth best distributed?

hampshirebrit
10-17-2010, 05:33 PM
Moved to GD from TD, simply because this thread has been self identified as "debate", and the TD is not for debate.

How many times do I have to say it. :rolleyes: The TD is for CUers to beat the living crap out of each other, not for debate.

If you boys want this to be a one-one-one, it is up to you to police it.

You will have to use your razor-sharp wits to do so. If it gets too out of hand, we might or might not step in.

Keep it as genteel as you so far are doing, and we'll not need to trouble ourselves, either way.

Thanks

Hamps.

NJCardFan
10-17-2010, 05:56 PM
Moved to GD from TD, simply because this thread has been self identified as "debate", and the TD is not for debate.

How many times do I have to say it. :rolleyes: The TD is for CUers to beat the living crap out of each other, not for debate.

If you boys want this to be a one-one-one, it is up to you to police it.

You will have to use your razor-sharp wits to do so. If it gets too out of hand, we might or might not step in.

Keep it as genteel as you so far are doing, and we'll not need to trouble ourselves, either way.

Thanks

Hamps.
Nah, this will be lighthearted. At least I will attempt do so.

hampshirebrit
10-17-2010, 06:04 PM
OK, have at it. It could actually be a good thread.

There is possibly a case to be made for having a place for one-on-one debate of a non- TD kind.

I'll moderate it under relaxed TD rules.

I believe that the first question goes to New Jersey.

NJCardFan
10-17-2010, 06:20 PM
Okay,

Two questions for wee wee...
1. What is the source of wealth?

2. How is wealth best distributed?

I'll field this one.


1) This question is someone ambiguous so I'll try my best because it depends on one's definition of wealth. I'm going to limit this to greenbacks. All wealth accumulated by someone started as nothing. In this country, you can become wealthy in many different ways. You can come up with a product or service everyone wants or needs(Bill Gates). You can be born into it(the Kennedy's and Rockefeller) or you can win it like in a lottery or gambling. You can also steal it(insert mafia family here). A vast majority of the wealthiest among us fall into the first category. They have some kind of skill or product they created or service they can offer that is in demand. Be it Gates or Jobs who revolutionized the computer industry, or a musician, actor, or athlete. Or even low profile people like doctors, lawyers, or businesspeople. All of these mentioned take a lot of work and sacrifice to achieve. They wouldn't be making what they made if what they did wasn't considered valuable to the populace.

2) Wealth is earned and not distributed. You should only make what you are worth or what you put into it. If your desire is to sit on your fanny and do nothing, then you should be paid accordingly. If you are working and feel your efforts are under appreciated, then seek employment elsewhere. Especially if everything is laid out before you take the job. If you don't like the conditions, then don't work there. There is an old saying that goes, "If you've always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you always got." Truer words have never been spoken.

hampshirebrit
10-17-2010, 06:37 PM
Ball is in your court, Mr WeiWuWei. You did say whatever he wanted to talk about.

So talk. This is your moment of glory. Make it worth our while.

AmPat
10-17-2010, 09:35 PM
Good luck! Getting a valid, reasoned response from a libertard is nearly impossible. Whatever this becomes, can we please keep the rebuttals down to a couple of paragraphs? I can only stand so much double-speak.

Wei Wu Wei
10-18-2010, 02:48 PM
alright well these questions are very vague but ill keep it short.

1. simple answer wealth is produced. wealth can be many things but in short money is the abstraction of labor. all items or goods or services are produced, performed, or obtained via labor. the value is something is a combination of it's use-value determined by demand and also the cost of labor. labor used to produce a good is what imparts it's additional value, it's the basic commodity traded and that which is necessary for all others to be produced, and keeping a portion of that labor cost for yourself is profit. a system of power like our own over time will acculumate abstracted labor force in the form of monitary wealth. this is why technological innovations , measured in how many man-hours they could output, were the basis of the explosion of wealth in the last century and a half, allowing for more man-hours (or labor) to be abstracted from individual workers (who shifted the their labor onto manning machines, for longer periods of time and for even less pay).

2. your income should be earned. ideally, how much money you make is determined by how much work you do, plus additional value for societal needs which require special training like doctors or scientists. in reality, there's no such thing as the invisible hand, we should adjust our system so that working class and middle class americans have a larger share of the pie (because they already earn it, but others take it) and the recipients of wall street bailouts who give themselves billion dollar bonuses would get less. this wouldn't involve simply taking money away andd giving it to others, but creating a macroeconomic environment that benefits the bottom 80% more than currently and the top 5% less than currently. There is no such thing as a neutral economy, some mythical hands-off policy where the economy runs itself. No such thing. right now the policies actively benefit the super-wealthy, so instead of doing nothing and letting the current gravity keep sucking wealth upwards, we can change a few things to benefit working class people and give more of a competative edge to small businesses.

NJCardFan
10-18-2010, 05:53 PM
alright well these questions are very vague but ill keep it short.

1. simple answer wealth is produced. wealth can be many things but in short money is the abstraction of labor. all items or goods or services are produced, performed, or obtained via labor. the value is something is a combination of it's use-value determined by demand and also the cost of labor. labor used to produce a good is what imparts it's additional value, it's the basic commodity traded and that which is necessary for all others to be produced, and keeping a portion of that labor cost for yourself is profit. a system of power like our own over time will acculumate abstracted labor force in the form of monitary wealth. this is why technological innovations , measured in how many man-hours they could output, were the basis of the explosion of wealth in the last century and a half, allowing for more man-hours (or labor) to be abstracted from individual workers (who shifted the their labor onto manning machines, for longer periods of time and for even less pay).

2. your income should be earned. ideally, how much money you make is determined by how much work you do, plus additional value for societal needs which require special training like doctors or scientists. in reality, there's no such thing as the invisible hand, we should adjust our system so that working class and middle class americans have a larger share of the pie (because they already earn it, but others take it) and the recipients of wall street bailouts who give themselves billion dollar bonuses would get less. this wouldn't involve simply taking money away andd giving it to others, but creating a macroeconomic environment that benefits the bottom 80% more than currently and the top 5% less than currently. There is no such thing as a neutral economy, some mythical hands-off policy where the economy runs itself. No such thing. right now the policies actively benefit the super-wealthy, so instead of doing nothing and letting the current gravity keep sucking wealth upwards, we can change a few things to benefit working class people and give more of a competative edge to small businesses.

Wow. A concise answer. Wrong, but concise. While you have the basic grasp of the concept of #1, where you err is when you say this:

this is why technological innovations , measured in how many man-hours they could output, were the basis of the explosion of wealth in the last century and a half, allowing for more man-hours (or labor) to be abstracted from individual workers (who shifted the their labor onto manning machines, for longer periods of time and for even less pay).
Your error is believing that those who are manufacturing this product should be compensated the same as those who own the plant. Wrongo. The workers you describe are paid the wage that the owner feels is fair. If they don't like it, they are free to seek employment elsewhere. I don't care what any of you socialist types believe, you do not have the right to a job. Nor do you have the right to a "living wage". Minimum wage jobs are set in that manner for a reason. They are not designed to get rich from. Most of these jobs are low skilled jobs designed to introduce young people to the work force. If you are in your 20's and still flipping burgers at McDonalds, then you are a pathetic loser. Everyone, and I do mean everyone, has the OPPORTUNITY to be successful and even wealthy. The means of how you do it is all up to you. I do not begrudge anyone the living they make. I am not jealous nor envious. I say good for them.

As for the "wealth getting sucked upwards", I go back to the saying I posted. "If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you always got". If you want to be up there with the Jones', come up with a product or service someone might be willing to pay for. If you want to continue to be a slug, you should expect the government to take, at the barrel of a gun, from someone who earned it and give it to you. You make your own breaks, plain and simple.

I've often said that if every dime was pooled and doled out evenly across the board, within a matter of 5 years, those who were considered wealthy before would be wealthy again and those who were dirt poor will be dirt poor again. With scant few exceptions. If you don't think most poor people are poor because of poor decisions, take a look at a few lottery winners.

Wei Wu Wei
10-18-2010, 08:21 PM
Wow. A concise answer. Wrong, but concise. While you have the basic grasp of the concept of #1, where you err is when you say this:

Your error is believing that those who are manufacturing this product should be compensated the same as those who own the plant. Wrongo. The workers you describe are paid the wage that the owner feels is fair. If they don't like it, they are free to seek employment elsewhere.

This assumes better options are available elsewhere. The system itself gravitates away from this ideal environment. This is because very wealthy owners are in a different class than regular wage workers (I should note that obviously there isn't a simple 2-class divide, but a rather more complex system of classes based on numerous factors, not simply income, but the point remains that the very wealthy elite ruling class is distinctly different from the majority of working classes). They compete against each other for highest profit, while workers compete against each other highest wage. The thing is that highest profit motive naturally means keeping costs low, including labor costs, which is actually extracting the most unpaid labor out of as many workers as possible. The owner must do this to stay competitive against other owners, it's not as if he is some ghoul, but when the government is extraordinarily overrepresentative of the most wealthy owners, the resulting macroeconomic policies are those which benefit these elites at the expense of most Americans.

This means that businesses are doing their best to keep labor costs lower and lower, there is a myth of being to use your relatively little labor as a significant bargaining tool, but this isn't true today. It's not really a negotiation when one party already holds all the chips.



I don't care what any of you socialist types believe, you do not have the right to a job. Nor do you have the right to a "living wage".

Do you believe that the government is by and for the people? If so, why cannot the people decide, through democratic representative legislation, to pool together resources for the benefit of everyone?

You don't have to call it a right, it can just be a smart decision made by the population.



Minimum wage jobs are set in that manner for a reason. They are not designed to get rich from. Most of these jobs are low skilled jobs designed to introduce young people to the work force. If you are in your 20's and still flipping burgers at McDonalds, then you are a pathetic loser.

No they are set that way because it's the lowest these companies can get away with paying their employees. It has nothing to do with some life lesson there isn't some paternal figure designing the economy it's just about profits, that is the legal obligation of a corporation.

Also, the point of a job isn't to get rich. Maybe this is your plan but I don't believe most Americans have getting rich as a realistic desire or goal. Most Americans, I believe (and no I can't cite any source on this one) want to be able to make enough money from a full time job to support themselves, their families, and a little extra to pursue their passions. This is not a human right or any sort of thing like that, this is simply the American Dream.


Everyone, and I do mean everyone, has the OPPORTUNITY to be successful and even wealthy. The means of how you do it is all up to you. I do not begrudge anyone the living they make. I am not jealous nor envious. I say good for them.

Not everyone has an equal opportunity though. It's not even realistic to expect full equality of opportunity, people will always have connections. The problem is that large segments of the population are statistically dramatically less likely to to become wealthy or even stably successful.

We produce the wealth of the wealthiest nation in the world, I believe the workers have a claim to a larger percentage of that wealth, through a restructuring of macroeconomic policy to achieve greater access to opportunity, not from simple robin-hood style redistribution.


As for the "wealth getting sucked upwards", I go back to the saying I posted. "If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you always got". If you want to be up there with the Jones', come up with a product or service someone might be willing to pay for. If you want to continue to be a slug, you should expect the government to take, at the barrel of a gun, from someone who earned it and give it to you. You make your own breaks, plain and simple.

Horatio Alger called, he wants his self-indulging pipe dream back.

The fact of the matter is that this success story applies to a tiny percentage of the population. These people are constantly held up as reminders that "even a regular guy can make it", but the very excess of attention given to them also highlights the fact that these people are a tiny fraction of the population, the vast majority of people simply work their entire lives and try to save for retirement if they can. They are like celebrities and American Idol stars to us, they justify our system because we can point to them as shining examples of how someone can make it here but if it were truly that common we wouldn't need all of this excess because it would be the norm.

People also love these stories because when you buy into them you also purchase the self-congratulating notion that "even if only a tiny percentage of the population ever achieves this, I can do it, because I am special". Deep down everyone wants to believe this, and this mythology, while justifying the power structure, gives people the chance to believe that.




I've often said that if every dime was pooled and doled out evenly across the board, within a matter of 5 years, those who were considered wealthy before would be wealthy again and those who were dirt poor will be dirt poor again. With scant few exceptions. If you don't think most poor people are poor because of poor decisions, take a look at a few lottery winners.

One primary function of ideology is to convince the population that the status quo is a result of nature.

NJCardFan
10-18-2010, 10:40 PM
Oy. My head is spinning....


This assumes better options are available elsewhere. The system itself gravitates away from this ideal environment. This is because very wealthy owners are in a different class than regular wage workers (I should note that obviously there isn't a simple 2-class divide, but a rather more complex system of classes based on numerous factors, not simply income, but the point remains that the very wealthy elite ruling class is distinctly different from the majority of working classes). They compete against each other for highest profit, while workers compete against each other highest wage. The thing is that highest profit motive naturally means keeping costs low, including labor costs, which is actually extracting the most unpaid labor out of as many workers as possible. The owner must do this to stay competitive against other owners, it's not as if he is some ghoul, but when the government is extraordinarily overrepresentative of the most wealthy owners, the resulting macroeconomic policies are those which benefit these elites at the expense of most Americans.
Wow, I used to think you didn't know shit. Now I'm completely convinced of it. Have you ever run a business? You do know that a business that doesn't make a profit will not be a business for too long, right? If it weren't profits, you wouldn't have that computer you babble on. And as I said, if a particular worker doesn't like the wage, go work somewhere else. There is no gun to anyone's head to work anywhere. And if you don't think you're being paid what your worth, negotiate a higher salary.

This means that businesses are doing their best to keep labor costs lower and lower, there is a myth of being to use your relatively little labor as a significant bargaining tool, but this isn't true today. It's not really a negotiation when one party already holds all the chips.
Wow. Clueless. I worked in the bread business for 12 years. I made damned good money. So did the guys who baked the bread. According to you, the sweatshops are still in business. Nope. Nobody is starving.

Do you believe that the government is by and for the people? If so, why cannot the people decide, through democratic representative legislation, to pool together resources for the benefit of everyone?
Supposedly. 2nd question, no. Theft by any other name is still theft. And this democratic legislation you speak of is called communism. It's the old joke. Democracy is 2 wolves and 1 sheep deciding what's for dinner. Let me twist this around, you have 10 people and 1 doesn't want to play. Do you think it's right to force that 1 person to play? Freedom. Learn it.

You don't have to call it a right, it can just be a smart decision made by the population.
So you're advocating taking things by force. Nice. Someone's "smart decision" is another man's rights infringement. Like I said, theft by any other name is still theft.

No they are set that way because it's the lowest these companies can get away with paying their employees. It has nothing to do with some life lesson there isn't some paternal figure designing the economy it's just about profits, that is the legal obligation of a corporation.
Once again...WRONG! The only thing the minimum wage does is kill jobs. Minimum wage gets you minimum effort. You know what I find irritating? Going to McDonalds. Ordering a fucking value meal, and having the order get screwed up. I mean, value meals are set in stone. Sandwich, fries, drink. How do you fuck that up? But it happens, a lot. And again, the minimum wage was never meant to be a "living" wage. But here's the thing. You get hired. Get this minimum wage, then guess what? Do a good enough job, and you get a raise. Wow. What a concept.

Also, the point of a job isn't to get rich. Maybe this is your plan but I don't believe most Americans have getting rich as a realistic desire or goal. Most Americans, I believe (and no I can't cite any source on this one) want to be able to make enough money from a full time job to support themselves, their families, and a little extra to pursue their passions. This is not a human right or any sort of thing like that, this is simply the American Dream. ]
Again, get a marketable skill and you'll do fine. I made a good living delivering bread. And I make a good living now(even though I hate the job). I'd give everything to go back to the bread business, or any delivery business...and who knows, maybe I will. But you know what? There's money to be made everywhere. The medical field is a gold mine. My wife wants to get into that. And there's also a side project I'm looking at that is a major money maker.

Not everyone has an equal opportunity though. It's not even realistic to expect full equality of opportunity, people will always have connections.
Bullshit. Everyone has an opportunity. EVERYONE. Even your sorry ass. It's what you do with that opportunity. I know of many people who started with shit and are doing well. Like I said, if you want to spend your time getting high and spouting shit on the internet, then you're not making the most of your opportunity.

The problem is that large segments of the population are statistically dramatically less likely to to become wealthy or even stably successful.
Prove it. Give me a study not from DailyKos or something like that.

We produce the wealth of the wealthiest nation in the world, I believe the workers have a claim to a larger percentage of that wealth]
Bullshit. The workers put up not one dime of capital to start the business so they are only entitled to what the employer is willing to pay. Remember, the employer is doing the employee a favor of giving them a job, not the other way around. If that employee doesn't like it, there are 10 people who would love to have their job. Wow, you are so incredibly stupid.

Next question.

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 03:03 PM
This is a bit of a thread bump but this is also an excellent thread. Real questions, real discussion, at least for a little while.

I was probably banned before I could reply to the last post, which I would like to do, however there's two things I'd like to adress before I do:

1. Notice in this thread who resorts to chilidish insults and name-calling. If a person knows what they are talking about, they don't need to obsessively call other people stupid, they can simply demonstrate in a respectful way that they don't know what they are talking about.

2. I'm a bit wary of posting any good, well-thought out responses on this forum because it seems pretty clear that I'll get banned for making too much sense. I know that nobody likes anyone else spanking their children, so I think I'm justified in my caution here.

Rockntractor
05-09-2011, 03:32 PM
This is a bit of a thread bump but this is also an excellent thread. Real questions, real discussion, at least for a little while.

I was probably banned before I could reply to the last post, which I would like to do, however there's two things I'd like to adress before I do:

1. Notice in this thread who resorts to chilidish insults and name-calling. If a person knows what they are talking about, they don't need to obsessively call other people stupid, they can simply demonstrate in a respectful way that they don't know what they are talking about.

2. I'm a bit wary of posting any good, well-thought out responses on this forum because it seems pretty clear that I'll get banned for making too much sense. I know that nobody likes anyone else spanking their children, so I think I'm justified in my caution here.

If you have a problem here and feel as though your mistreated go somewhere where you are treated better.

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 03:43 PM
If you have a problem here and feel as though your mistreated go somewhere where you are treated better.

i like it here, clarification on the rules is just useful before i post.

i've been trying to stay within the boundaries here, but even then the banhammer drops down whenever someone gets upset, which happens pretty easily. I don't mind adjusting to the rules but it's just a little difficult to do when I have no clue where 'the line' is. I'm not trying to be difficult here , i hope you know. I won't talk about this more in this thread, but I would appreciate some clarification if that's possible. :)

Rockntractor
05-09-2011, 03:48 PM
i like it here, clarification on the rules is just useful before i post.

i've been trying to stay within the boundaries here, but even then the banhammer drops down whenever someone gets upset, which happens pretty easily. I don't mind adjusting to the rules but it's just a little difficult to do when I have no clue where 'the line' is. I'm not trying to be difficult here , i hope you know. I won't talk about this more in this thread, but I would appreciate some clarification if that's possible. :)

Just don't worry about it and make your posts Wei, if you get a week off now and then there are better things to do than post on message boards.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
05-09-2011, 04:30 PM
Wei, what is best in life?

fettpett
05-09-2011, 04:34 PM
Wei, what is best in life?

huh?:confused::confused:

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 04:40 PM
Wei, what is best in life?

this varies from person to person, so I can only talk about myself here. When I was younger, I would have said being happy or having fun, but not anymore.

For me, there's the big things like family, friends, that sort of love. I believe what's best in life is giving it up for something greater. This means not living for yourself, but living for other people, living for good causes, and living for God. I think the best thing a person can do is give themselves up to God and become a vessel for His divine will, which benefits the people and world around you. I want to leave the world a better place than when I entered it, or If that's not possible, to at least change it for the better, and I know that I cannot do that myself. I think the only way people can really love others, love the world, or the love God is to engage in continuous struggle with oneself.

As you can probably see, this reflects my spiritual beliefs so of course I cannot expect everyone else to agree with me.


I don't always live up to this ideal, in fact I very rarely do. Most times I can be selfish or stupid or ego-centric or do things that are inconsiderate or hurt other people, and I feel guilty for it. Like everyone else I'm filled with sin and faults, but this is what I consider the ideal what I hope to live up to. This is one of my values that I fall short on, but try to aim for.

I hope this answers your question

NJCardFan
05-09-2011, 05:07 PM
For starters, for the record, I defended you in a thread on you getting banned while Hazldick gets to stay around(that has since been rectified). #2, you simply cannot go by what you just said and advocate for taking from one person by force and giving it to another. That is what we call a moral oxymoron. And it isn't like you're talking about clothing the lepers, as it were. You try to justify state sponsored robbery in order to support people who chose a lot in life and masking it behind the concept of "the greater good". In Jesus's time, the poor were really poor. I mean really poor. No pot to piss in poor. And there wasn't a whole lot of opportunities for people then. You were either a fisherman, farmer, or carpenter, as was Jesus and his family or some other menial vocation. And usually the really poor had some kind of affliction. The poor then didn't have color TV's or cell phones like the 'poor' today. Hell, people in this country who consider themselves poor don't know what poor is. So by the government taking from me so these people can keep up this facade goes against my moral fiber.

Arroyo_Doble
05-09-2011, 05:23 PM
huh?:confused::confused:

It is a Conan the Barbarian reference. The answer is, "To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women."

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 05:59 PM
For starters, for the record, I defended you in a thread on you getting banned while Hazldick gets to stay around(that has since been rectified).

i appreciate that.



#2, you simply cannot go by what you just said and advocate for taking from one person by force and giving it to another. That is what we call a moral oxymoron. And it isn't like you're talking about clothing the lepers, as it were. You try to justify state sponsored robbery in order to support people who chose a lot in life and masking it behind the concept of "the greater good". In Jesus's time, the poor were really poor. I mean really poor. No pot to piss in poor. And there wasn't a whole lot of opportunities for people then. You were either a fisherman, farmer, or carpenter, as was Jesus and his family or some other menial vocation. And usually the really poor had some kind of affliction. The poor then didn't have color TV's or cell phones like the 'poor' today. Hell, people in this country who consider themselves poor don't know what poor is. So by the government taking from me so these people can keep up this facade goes against my moral fiber.

I see small color tv's that are in working condition sitting next to dumpsters and cell phones are literally given away for free. Technological advancements have made many things possible today that were not possible then, but they also make possible even greater forms of exploitation.

If you live in America, most of the land is owned, most of the resources are claimed, you can't just go out and live off of the land like people could then, the economic structure exists so that the only way to survive is to get money, and the means of getting money are often limited.

Your argument supposes that the status quo is the natural God-given state of affairs, as if man enters the Capitalist System that God Created. that's just not true.

Our society, our institutions, our laws, and our economy are all man-made. They are not perfect and they generate incredible amounts of suffering. You totally ignore this, accept it all as a given that cannot be questioned, and say that any activity that tries to lessen the negative effects are to be judged morally. Taxation is wrong but the economic system that makes taxation possible (or necessary) is not to be questioned?


Why do you think Capitalism cannot be questioned or critiqued? Do you agree that it is man made, that it is flawed, and that perhaps it could be improved upon?

Some people believe that our system is, or was, or theoretically 'should be' perfect, so that any problems that arise must come from some external factor. This type of logic culminated in Nazi Germany, Stalinist Russia, and other terrible regimes where instead of accepting the internal contradictions within their own systems, they obsessively tried to eradicate the system of the "x-factor".

I strongly believe there is a moral argument to be made in regards to our economic system, but even this is not necessary to critique it.

Even from a purely analytical standpoint, analyzing the system's functioning rather than it's morality, the problems are also very apparent. These problems inevitably result in morally abhorrent consequences, but these two perspectives can be looked at separately.

If you look in the first several chapters of Marx's Capital, there is nothing in there about it being good or bad, right or wrong, or any sort of morally loaded language. It's a scientific analysis of how commodities are exchanged, how value is formed, how money comes to represent it, how money is converted to capital, and how these processes flow together.

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 06:05 PM
I think as a society we need to get over this crazy idea that we are the hottest shit in history, everything we do is right, and nothing can be criticized.

Our prison system is atrocious, our economic system is insane and perpetually on the brink of collapse, our foreign policy is imperialistic and devoid of moral consistency, the enforcement of our laws are classist, sexist, and racist. There are many flaws that if people dare to talk about, they are acussed of being America Hating TRAITORS.

This sort of rhetoric is only used to shut down debate, the only point of this "if you criticize anything about America, GET THE FUCK OUT" mentality is prevent any good change from ever happening.

I think that people who cannot accept honest legitimate criticisms about their country are projecting their own inadequacies, and probably cannot accept honest criticism about themselves either. It's an infantile fantasy that babies have, "I must be absolutely perfect, the thing my mother wants!" that they have an incredibly hard time getting over. The idea of not being seen as perfect is too much, but it's a sign of immaturity.

If we cannot accept the flaws in our system, and insist they aren't there, and keep projecting the source of problems to outside factors, our society will not survive.

NJCardFan
05-09-2011, 07:01 PM
I never said that capitalism cannot be critiqued nor have I said that it's perfect. No one says that. However, comparing the system you embrace to the one I embrace and there's 2 fundamental differences:

Communism or Socialism is designed to bring people down.

Capitalism embraces achievement. And through capitalism, not only are you rewarded through hard work and determination, it's a system where you get out of it what you put in. Communism and socialism, everybody gets the same, no matter how much you put into it. You can be the hardest working person in the entire shop and you won't make a dime more than the laziest person in the shop. Is this what you consider fair? However, in a free market, if you work hard and put forth a major effort, you get noticed and you move up. In a free market, if you are unsatisfied with the amount of money you are making, you would be free to negotiate a higher rate of pay. If not, your employer's competitor would be happy to have you. In your economic mindframe, no matter what, everybody gets the same. This is such a childish concept that it's sad. There are winners and losers in life and no matter how you sugar coat it, there are the strong and not so strong. Changing the rules in order to make the strong weaker is idiocy and all it does is hold back progress. I'd rather take capitalism with all it's flaws than communism and socialism any day of the week and 10 times on Sunday.

Madisonian
05-09-2011, 07:12 PM
It is a Conan the Barbarian reference. The answer is, "To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women."

Now that was fucking funny!:D
Bravo, Sir!

BadCat
05-09-2011, 07:13 PM
I think as a society we need to get over this crazy idea that we are the hottest shit in history, everything we do is right, and nothing can be criticized.

Our prison system is atrocious, our economic system is insane and perpetually on the brink of collapse, our foreign policy is imperialistic and devoid of moral consistency, the enforcement of our laws are classist, sexist, and racist. There are many flaws that if people dare to talk about, they are acussed of being America Hating TRAITORS.

This sort of rhetoric is only used to shut down debate, the only point of this "if you criticize anything about America, GET THE FUCK OUT" mentality is prevent any good change from ever happening.

I think that people who cannot accept honest legitimate criticisms about their country are projecting their own inadequacies, and probably cannot accept honest criticism about themselves either. It's an infantile fantasy that babies have, "I must be absolutely perfect, the thing my mother wants!" that they have an incredibly hard time getting over. The idea of not being seen as perfect is too much, but it's a sign of immaturity.

If we cannot accept the flaws in our system, and insist they aren't there, and keep projecting the source of problems to outside factors, our society will not survive.


If you want to spew your America hating drivel, use the bandwidth of another discussion board.
YOU are one of the biggest "flaws in our system".

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 07:37 PM
I think it's tricky to compare our current existing economic system to various ideas of what 'communism' or 'socialism' is.

If you ask different people what those mean, you will get different answers. Many people simply equate them to Stalinist USSR, many people assume they mean "everyone is equal", some poeple think it means The Government Rules Everything and some people think it means there is No State.

The semantic argument here isn't really important. I'm not trying to argue that we should flip a switch from our current economic system into a system where everyone is forced to be totally equal. I am not arguing that.

Even amongst groups of marxists, leftists, communists, there is a great amount of debate as to what should be done, so not everyone on the Left agrees with that.

You can use Marxian analysis to understand and criqitue today's capitalism, without having a "perfect utopia" in mind. When we are examing a situation, often times it is not enough to simply "find the right answer", because often times everyone is asking the wrong questions. Marxist critique is more about asking the right questions. For most Marxists, critiquing capitalism is not about re-creating the USSR or even finding a blueprint for utopia, it's about thinking outside of the normal liberal-conservative framework in order to ask different questions.

Just because someone recognizes capitalism as a flawed system, and seeks to overcome that flawed system, doesn't mean they "have the answer". Just because humans may never live in a "Perfect Society" doesn't mean we shouldn't continuously work to improve our society.


Capitalism embraces achievement. And through capitalism, not only are you rewarded through hard work and determination, it's a system where you get out of it what you put in.

This is idealistic. There are people who do hard dedicated work for their entire lives and struggle to pay the bills. Some people will say "well it's their fault for not getting a better job", but why should the system punish people for taking low-skilled jobs? These jobs are absolutely necessary for the function of society. On the other hand, there are people with connections who have cushy jobs where they don't do a fraction of actual WORK that working-class people do, and they are reawarded with millions of dollars and endless benefits.

This is just a tiny example, and I could elaborate endlessly, but American Capitalism is not a Meritocracy.

There is some degree of reward for merit, yes. I know this because I was born and raised in a poor family. I lived in the projects as a child and was the first in my family to go to college. I am relatively successful by those standards, so I recognize that there is potential, but I also know that the bootstraps mythology that preaches "Equal Opportunuty" is just that - a myth.

Here's another obvious example, in fact someone I know is in this situation (he is the landlord).

Suppose you inherent your parents' house, but do not live in it. Without working for it, you become a property owner. You then send some papers to a realty company and before you know it, someone is renting your home. You set up an account for repairs and you pay your taxes on it, but every single month you get a large check in the mail. The check pays for the cost of property taxes, it pays for the cost of repairs and other expenses. Then there is more, this is essentially free money. You continue to "make" this money simply because your name is on the deed, and the check keeps coming in, but it's not like it comes from no where.

The tenants are hard-working people with blue-collar jobs. They work hard, they sweat, they come home, and the vast majority of their paycheck goes to rent. They don't make enough money to save, and the little they can save is put into a college fund for the kids.

If you are the landlord, you quite literally don't have to work. As long as you are comfortable living a modest lifestyle, you can live off of the rent alone. For the tenants, this isn't a possibility. They have to work very hard for every dime, and most of it goes to the landlord.

Does this reflect your idea of a merit-based system?


Communism and socialism, everybody gets the same, no matter how much you put into it. You can be the hardest working person in the entire shop and you won't make a dime more than the laziest person in the shop. Is this what you consider fair? However, in a free market, if you work hard and put forth a major effort, you get noticed and you move up. In a free market, if you are unsatisfied with the amount of money you are making, you would be free to negotiate a higher rate of pay. If not, your employer's competitor would be happy to have you. In your economic mindframe, no matter what, everybody gets the same. This is such a childish concept that it's sad.

I'm not arguing for an "everyone is the same no matter what" system. I know this is what comes to mind when someone hears "Marx" or "anti-capitalism", but that sort of world is so far removed from now that it isn't even worth talking about.

The problem of lazy workers is a problem that comes from being aliented from the products of your labor. This is true in capitalism and it was also true in the Soviet Union. If workers own the factory they work in, and they own the products they create, and they share in the profits that they generate, then why would they want to be lazy? In the system we have now, workers can entirely run and operate a business, but the products of their labor are not their own, and neither are the profits.

Think about it, if you owned a HUGE share of stock in a company, you would be personally more motivated to work hard, because you are working for yourself. When workers own the products of their labor, it becomes a fulfilling, self-directed activity.

Of course there is still a need for managers or team leaders to keep organizations functioning, but having an owner who takes all of the products for himself totally changes the nature of the game.

There are example of business cooperatives where the workers are the owners, and they run the company in a democratic fashion and share in the profits. These businesses run very well.Their products might be more expensive, but if everyone had a job where they owned their own labor, they could afford it.



There are winners and losers in life and no matter how you sugar coat it, there are the strong and not so strong. Changing the rules in order to make the strong weaker is idiocy and all it does is hold back progress. I'd rather take capitalism with all it's flaws than communism and socialism any day of the week and 10 times on Sunday.

Again, the only way you can make capitalism seem better is by comparing it to a caricature of communism.

Instead of comparing it to a caricature of communism, can't we just examine it, critique it, and see how we could make it better? It doesn't have to be one or the other, heads or tails, American Capitalism or Stalinist Communism. It doesn't even have to be "somewhere in the middle". If we try to honestly think, we can find new directions, but you can't just shut downthe debate by saying "it's either capitalism or SLAVERY".

Madisonian
05-09-2011, 07:38 PM
I think as a society we need to get over this crazy idea that we are the hottest shit in history, everything we do is right, and nothing can be criticized.

Our prison system is atrocious, our economic system is insane and perpetually on the brink of collapse, our foreign policy is imperialistic and devoid of moral consistency, the enforcement of our laws are classist, sexist, and racist. There are many flaws that if people dare to talk about, they are acussed of being America Hating TRAITORS.

This sort of rhetoric is only used to shut down debate, the only point of this "if you criticize anything about America, GET THE FUCK OUT" mentality is prevent any good change from ever happening.

I think that people who cannot accept honest legitimate criticisms about their country are projecting their own inadequacies, and probably cannot accept honest criticism about themselves either. It's an infantile fantasy that babies have, "I must be absolutely perfect, the thing my mother wants!" that they have an incredibly hard time getting over. The idea of not being seen as perfect is too much, but it's a sign of immaturity.

If we cannot accept the flaws in our system, and insist they aren't there, and keep projecting the source of problems to outside factors, our society will not survive.

The problem is that you keep recommending some non-existent political socio-economic system that bears the same name.
The concerns are valid and not many will deny some or all what you claim.
But tell me, what nation of over 300,000,000 or even 200,000,000 do you claim as better?
You say we should abandon what we have, flawed as it may be in theory or in practice, to accept what?
Russia? China? India, Indonesia?

Look up the top 10 and tell me where you would rather be right now?

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 07:40 PM
If you want to spew your America hating drivel, use the bandwidth of another discussion board.
YOU are one of the biggest "flaws in our system".

this is what I mean

I'm probably going to get banned.

There are some posters here who I enjoy talking with, enjoy debating, many who I disagree with but who provide me intellectual stimulation. I'll probably be gone any minute now

If any posters here want to talk or debate or discuss, please pm me your email address and we can continue via email once I'm forced out of here.

This place prides itself on 'not being DU' but honest dissenting opinions are apparently not allowed.

BadCat
05-09-2011, 07:40 PM
Nice essay libtard. Sounds like sour grapes to me.

BadCat
05-09-2011, 07:44 PM
this is what I mean

I'm probably going to get banned.

There are some posters here who I enjoy talking with, enjoy debating, many who I disagree with but who provide me intellectual stimulation. I'll probably be gone any minute now

If any posters here want to talk or debate or discuss, please pm me your email address and we can continue via email once I'm forced out of here.

This place prides itself on 'not being DU' but honest dissenting opinions are apparently not allowed.

If we were DU, your worthless non-tax paying ass would have been banned PERMANENTLY, as soon as we learned of your political leanings.

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 07:47 PM
The problem is that you keep recommending some non-existent political socio-economic system that bears the same name.

You might notice that I avoid using the term 'Communism' to describe the better system.

Part of it is because of the failures of the regimes who have used this title before.

There is a difference between a diagnosis and a prescription. What I hope to offer is conceptual tools that can be used to better diagnose the problem. However, a diagnosis isn't the same as a prescription and often times people will reach the same diagnosis but have different prescriptions to cure it.

One of the tools for diagnosis is Marxism. Marxism is very useful for analyzing the problems we have, and hints at something better, but Marxism is not a prescription.

Soviet Communism was a prescription, and it failed, but just because a treatment fails doesn't meant that the diagnosis was incorrect.

Right now, I'm focused purely on the first part, the diagnosis. I think we are a very long way from solving our problems, but first we need to examine the problems and we need every tool available to do it. Marxism is a diagnostic tool, nothing more.




The concerns are valid and not many will deny some or all what you claim.

ACtually many people do totally deny what I claim.



But tell me, what nation of over 300,000,000 or even 200,000,000 do you claim as better?
You say we should abandon what we have, flawed as it may be in theory or in practice, to accept what?
Russia? China? India, Indonesia?

Look up the top 10 and tell me where you would rather be right now?

I'm not claiming that any of them have the answer. Some of these countries are better in some areas, but worse in other areas. It's dangerous to just compare them in a blanket way like that.

America is great in some areas, but it is not so great in other areas. That's not America-hating, that's just honest.

It's not as simple as picking one other system, at some point, we have to invent new ones.

This is like movies nowadays that are all terrible remakes of older movies. At some point, we need new creative ideas, but we cannot have new creative ideas if we lack the ability to see the problems.

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 07:51 PM
If we were DU, your worthless non-tax paying ass would have been banned PERMANENTLY, as soon as we learned of your political leanings.

I know, I see how they permaban people for disagreeing with the Democratic Party. They are totally close-minded and are so insecure in their pansy liberal beliefs that anyone who challenges them must be banned. I've always found CU more open in that respect, which is why I return, but come on badcat sometimes you get a little ridiculous with the bans. ease up please we're only talking. I'm not even being inflammatory or disrespectful.

Rockntractor
05-09-2011, 07:52 PM
http://i686.photobucket.com/albums/vv230/upyourstruly/bangkitty.jpg

Rockntractor
05-09-2011, 08:06 PM
You have survived Wei, go and sin no more.:)

Madisonian
05-09-2011, 08:28 PM
Many of us are more aware of the problem(s) then you give credit for.
But lets get real here. A Marxist analysis is a conclusion looking for proof to support it and is no more likely to point to capitalism as an equal or superior system than a Christian Scientist would recommend the local hospital to treat pneumonia.

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 08:49 PM
Many of us are more aware of the problem(s) then you give credit for.
But lets get real here. A Marxist analysis is a conclusion looking for proof to support it and is no more likely to point to capitalism as an equal or superior system than a Christian Scientist would recommend the local hospital to treat pneumonia.

Not exactly. Marx's analysis of capitalism is extremely logical and starts with what we see all around us. A Christian Scientist already has an answer in mind.

Granted, in this day and age, well over a hundred years after Marx's work, people can sort of assume that the answer is going to be anti-capitalist, but that's not where Marx starts.

Yes there are some people who just want to rage against the machine and use Marx as justification, but that's not what Marx does. Marx's analysis doesn't start with "Capitalism is bad" or "Capitalism is the problem", although it is fair to argue that his analysis ends there.

The real question is why. For a Christian Scientist, the answer is pure faith, that framework is supposed to be based on faith, but that's not how Marxist critique of capitalism goes. It starts with commodities, and slowly builds up to demonstrate how the capitalist mode of production has internal contradictions at the very core (in the workplace) which then extend outward throughout the rest of society.

You may run into stupid shaggy haired teenagers who claim to know Marx (because they read a few excerpts in high school) who really don't know what they are talking about, who only want to blame the system, but you shouldn't take that as representative of Marxism itself.

Capitalism has done great things, but it is also the source of many problems.

Really, this isn't a question of whether or not we should replace capitalism with something else, the real problem is that capitalism as a system is unsustainable. Capitalism digs it's own grave (as all systems prior also have), but it has the unique ability to continuously revolutionize itself without changing the original parameters. This means that over time, capitalism just becomes leaner and meaner, but the root antagonisms still persist.

Most pro-capitalists today will admit that today's version of American Capitalism (aptly called Corporatism) is not "true capitalism". The problem though isn't that some external force came in and corrupted capitalism, but that the internal contradictions within it forced it to change over time. There is no going back to a time when capitalism was "correct", because all of the social conditions that produced capitalism originally have changed.

Most pro-capitalists today are against so-called "Crony Capitalism", but again, you can't simply remove the excesses and hope to be in a so called state of "Correct Capitalism". It cannot happen.

Most Pro-Capitalists today agree with most anti-capitalists that American Capitalism is changing into something very different, but pro-capitalists blame this change on some "x-factor" corrupting the system (be it anti-capitalist policies, immigrants, corruption, the marriage between state and wall street, ect.), while Marxists see it as inevitable because of the system itself.

The question today, I think, is not whether Capitalism "should" be replaced, because it already has been, it is now Corporatism - under the guise of "American Capitalism". The next question also isn't whether or not American Capitalism "should" be changed, because that's going to happen whether we like it or not, the question is what is it changing into.

My very real fear is that we are going to find ourselves in a period of State Capitalism, something similar to what is happening in Singapore or Hong Kong, where the markets are liberalized but the government becomes less democratic. In singapore they understand that the so-called "free market" functions best with a non-democratic political system, because they can make quick financial decisions to stabalize the economy without getting bogged down in political fights. Also, because the state represents the corporations, they can effectively pass laws that are "good for business", even if they hurt the working people.

Capitalism will evolve to try to make up for it's own problems, but if the people do not recognize the source of the problems, they will sit back while their freedoms are stripped for the sake of the economy. It has already begun. The bank bailouts are a perfect example.

NJCardFan
05-09-2011, 08:54 PM
I'm still trying to find the merits of taking from one who earned it and given to one who didn't. And if you didn't give up your wealth, you will be killed and it will be taken anyway or worse yet, when you die, it's taken from you. In wee wee's puny mind this is justice.

Rockntractor
05-09-2011, 08:55 PM
Not exactly. Marx's analysis of capitalism is extremely logical and starts with what we see all around us. A Christian Scientist already has an answer in mind.

Granted, in this day and age, well over a hundred years after Marx's work, people can sort of assume that the answer is going to be anti-capitalist, but that's not where Marx starts.

Yes there are some people who just want to rage against the machine and use Marx as justification, but that's not what Marx does. Marx's analysis doesn't start with "Capitalism is bad" or "Capitalism is the problem", although it is fair to argue that his analysis ends there.

The real question is why. For a Christian Scientist, the answer is pure faith, that framework is supposed to be based on faith, but that's not how Marxist critique of capitalism goes. It starts with commodities, and slowly builds up to demonstrate how the capitalist mode of production has internal contradictions at the very core (in the workplace) which then extend outward throughout the rest of society.

You may run into stupid shaggy haired teenagers who claim to know Marx (because they read a few excerpts in high school) who really don't know what they are talking about, who only want to blame the system, but you shouldn't take that as representative of Marxism itself.

Capitalism has done great things, but it is also the source of many problems.

Really, this isn't a question of whether or not we should replace capitalism with something else, the real problem is that capitalism as a system is unsustainable. Capitalism digs it's own grave (as all systems prior also have), but it has the unique ability to continuously revolutionize itself without changing the original parameters. This means that over time, capitalism just becomes leaner and meaner, but the root antagonisms still persist.

Most pro-capitalists today will admit that today's version of American Capitalism (aptly called Corporatism) is not "true capitalism". The problem though isn't that some external force came in and corrupted capitalism, but that the internal contradictions within it forced it to change over time. There is no going back to a time when capitalism was "correct", because all of the social conditions that produced capitalism originally have changed.

Most pro-capitalists today are against so-called "Crony Capitalism", but again, you can't simply remove the excesses and hope to be in a so called state of "Correct Capitalism". It cannot happen.

Most Pro-Capitalists today agree with most anti-capitalists that American Capitalism is changing into something very different, but pro-capitalists blame this change on some "x-factor" corrupting the system (be it anti-capitalist policies, immigrants, corruption, the marriage between state and wall street, ect.), while Marxists see it as inevitable because of the system itself.

The question today, I think, is not whether Capitalism "should" be replaced, because it already has been, it is not Corporatism - under the guise of "American Capitalism". The next question also isn't whether or not American Capitalism "should" be changed, because that's going to happen whether we like it or not, the question is what is it changing into.

My very real fear is that we are going to find ourselves in a period of State Capitalism, something similar to what is happening in Singapore or Hong Kong, where the markets are liberalized but the government becomes less democratic. In singapore they understand that the so-called "free market" functions best with a non-democratic political system, because they can make quick financial decisions to stabalize the economy without getting bogged down in political fights. Also, because the state represents the corporations, they can effectively pass laws that are "good for business", even if they hurt the working people.

Capitalism will evolve to try to make up for it's own problems, but if the people do not recognize the source of the problems, they will sit back while their freedoms are stripped for the sake of the economy. It has already begun. The bank bailouts are a perfect example.

You should get together with tetrispro and come up with a Jehovah's witness commie combo! They rewrote the bible and could probably work their magic on the constitution too!

Wei Wu Wei
05-09-2011, 09:00 PM
You should get together with tetrispro and come up with a Jehovah's witness commie combo! They rewrote the bible and could probably work their magic on the constitution too!

That's not a bad idea. Going door to door and spreading awareness might be what this country needs.

Like most people I've always been annoyed by Jehovahs witness or mormons who come to my door, but at the same time I've always admired their dedication to what they believe in. Twice I've let these people into my home and they were extremely kind, polite, and respectful and we had long friendly conversations. :)

Rockntractor
05-09-2011, 09:08 PM
That's not a bad idea. Going door to door and spreading awareness might be what this country needs.

Like most people I've always been annoyed by Jehovahs witness or mormons who come to my door, but at the same time I've always admired their dedication to what they believe in. Twice I've let these people into my home and they were extremely kind, polite, and respectful and we had long friendly conversations. :)

I used to invite them in, but after a few sessions with lexicons and actual Greek texts they quit coming in, but they still come by occasional to say hi and are always welcome.

NJCardFan
05-09-2011, 10:31 PM
That's not a bad idea. Going door to door and spreading awareness might be what this country needs.

Like most people I've always been annoyed by Jehovahs witness or mormons who come to my door, but at the same time I've always admired their dedication to what they believe in. Twice I've let these people into my home and they were extremely kind, polite, and respectful and we had long friendly conversations. :)

Yeah. Go to people's houses and say this: "Hi, we're spreading awareness that we believe that you should work as hard as you can but that the government should come in and take 75% of you earned and spread that around to people who did squat to earn it. Isn't that great?"

You do that and let me know what happens. Never mind. One of 2 things will happen. They will either laugh their asses off or physically throw you off of their property.

KhrushchevsShoe
05-10-2011, 12:17 AM
The problem is that you keep recommending some non-existent political socio-economic system that bears the same name.
The concerns are valid and not many will deny some or all what you claim.
But tell me, what nation of over 300,000,000 or even 200,000,000 do you claim as better?
You say we should abandon what we have, flawed as it may be in theory or in practice, to accept what?
Russia? China? India, Indonesia?

Look up the top 10 and tell me where you would rather be right now?

Greater Germany, though that obviously isn't one state.