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How do you perceive capitalism?

How do you perceive capitalism?


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gavinfielder

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This is the disgusting part of "free enterprise" of "unfettered capitalism."

Profit for capital becomes the over-riding concern. The other factors of production are given short shrift...and the unfettered capitalists call it...the way things should be.

I'm a capitalist...and all for free enterprise. But if this is the way it is going to be...screw it. I'll support socialism before this.

I often think that the only reason people call themselves capitalist is that they conflate capitalism with free enterprise.

I see them as separate matters. Free enterprise (that is, to choose one's own productive role in society) is very nearly a natural right, but capitalism is not its determinant. I label myself anti-capitalist because I disagree with paying people 50 cents for a dollars worth of economic output. That is, of course, largely based on my perception of capitalism (D & C), just as its proponents undoubtedly support it based on theirs.
 

cpwill

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I often think that the only reason people call themselves capitalist is that they conflate capitalism with free enterprise.

I see them as separate matters. Free enterprise (that is, to choose one's own productive role in society) is very nearly a natural right, but capitalism is not its determinant. I label myself anti-capitalist because I disagree with paying people 50 cents for a dollars worth of economic output. That is, of course, largely based on my perception of capitalism (D & C), just as its proponents undoubtedly support it based on theirs.

Capitalism is the Freedom to Choose, to make contracts with others free of compulsion. It allows individuals to seek solutions and alternatives for themselves, rather than having them dictated. If I refuse to sell my labor for less than $30 an hour, I cannot compel anyone in capitalism to pay that price, I have to find someone willing to do so. Similarly, if someone wishes to sell me a car, they can't force me to buy at any price - they have to lower the price until I am willing to pay it in exchange for the car. In order to get that cash, however, I have to first offer a good or service to others - only by taking care of anothers' needs or wants am I likely to be able to take care of my own.

This is why Capitalism is the most moral of the economic systems for this reason - it bends our natural, self serving interests towards the service of others. No other economic system achieves this without coercion, and in those systems of coercion, inevitably the interests that get served end up not being each others, but rather the interests of those doing the coercing.
 

gavinfielder

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Capitalism is the Freedom to Choose, to make contracts with others free of compulsion. It allows individuals to seek solutions and alternatives for themselves, rather than having them dictated. If I refuse to sell my labor for less than $30 an hour, I cannot compel anyone in capitalism to pay that price, I have to find someone willing to do so. Similarly, if someone wishes to sell me a car, they can't force me to buy at any price - they have to lower the price until I am willing to pay it in exchange for the car. In order to get that cash, however, I have to first offer a good or service to others - only by taking care of anothers' needs or wants am I likely to be able to take care of my own.

This is why Capitalism is the most moral of the economic systems for this reason - it bends our natural, self serving interests towards the service of others. No other economic system achieves this without coercion, and in those systems of coercion, inevitably the interests that get served end up not being each others, but rather the interests of those doing the coercing.
I do see the risk of not being able to feed, clothe, and house one's self to be fairly coercive in and of itself and therefore undermines free enterprise when there simply aren't enough jobs (or market demand, more generally) to be able to make reasonable choices and be happy with them.

But I asked about your perception. That is a cogent response.
 

Dittohead not!

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I do see the risk of not being able to feed, clothe, and house one's self to be fairly coercive in and of itself and therefore undermines free enterprise when there simply aren't enough jobs (or market demand, more generally) to be able to make reasonable choices and be happy with them.

But I asked about your perception. That is a cogent response.

We who live in the free capitalistic societies of the world have a much better shot at being able to feed, clothe, and house ourselves than do people who live in the few socialist "worker's paradises" left on Earth. The difference is freedom to make one's own decisions and to live with the results of those decisions.
 

Glen Contrarian

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I often think that the only reason people call themselves capitalist is that they conflate capitalism with free enterprise.

I see them as separate matters. Free enterprise (that is, to choose one's own productive role in society) is very nearly a natural right, but capitalism is not its determinant. I label myself anti-capitalist because I disagree with paying people 50 cents for a dollars worth of economic output. That is, of course, largely based on my perception of capitalism (D & C), just as its proponents undoubtedly support it based on theirs.

Actually, I think it's B, C, and D. I know, B and C seem to be mutually exclusive...but they aren't. B concerns the "belief" that good social outcomes will occur...and all too often it is this belief that enables the corporatists to do that which is obviously detrimental to communities and to society - it's the "Greed is good" mentality in that one will tell himself, "Yes, this community's going to self-destruct when I move my factory away from here, but in the Really Big Picture things will be better for everyone when I take the jobs overseas...because when I make more money, everyone around me makes more money."
 

JohnfrmClevelan

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Capitalism is the Freedom to Choose, to make contracts with others free of compulsion.

You can have the freedom to choose and make contracts outside of captialism, though.

"Capitalism is an economic system based on private ownership of the means of production and their operation for profit." (wiki) That says nothing about freedom to choose and make contracts. Too many people conflate the two, often while trying to imply that other systems (like socialism) are not as "moral" as capitalism.
 

gavinfielder

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Actually, I think it's B, C, and D. I know, B and C seem to be mutually exclusive...but they aren't. B concerns the "belief" that good social outcomes will occur...and all too often it is this belief that enables the corporatists to do that which is obviously detrimental to communities and to society - it's the "Greed is good" mentality in that one will tell himself, "Yes, this community's going to self-destruct when I move my factory away from here, but in the Really Big Picture things will be better for everyone when I take the jobs overseas...because when I make more money, everyone around me makes more money."
I can see the problem in the poll choices, yeah. B & C & D works, with that explanation.
 

cpwill

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You can have the freedom to choose and make contracts outside of captialism, though.

"Capitalism is an economic system based on private ownership of the means of production and their operation for profit." (wiki) That says nothing about freedom to choose and make contracts. Too many people conflate the two, often while trying to imply that other systems (like socialism) are not as "moral" as capitalism.

Because they are not. :shrug: Coercion-based systems are less inherently moral than non coercion-based systems.
 

JohnfrmClevelan

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Because they are not. :shrug: Coercion-based systems are less inherently moral than non coercion-based systems.

Ans what is coercive about, for instance, socialism?
 

cpwill

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Ans what is coercive about, for instance, socialism?

:lol: The socialism part of it. Want to sell a good or service? Too bad. Want to buy a good or service? Too bad.
 

What if...?

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Capitalism is the Freedom to Choose, to make contracts with others free of compulsion. It allows individuals to seek solutions and alternatives for themselves, rather than having them dictated. If I refuse to sell my labor for less than $30 an hour, I cannot compel anyone in capitalism to pay that price, I have to find someone willing to do so. Similarly, if someone wishes to sell me a car, they can't force me to buy at any price - they have to lower the price until I am willing to pay it in exchange for the car. In order to get that cash, however, I have to first offer a good or service to others - only by taking care of anothers' needs or wants am I likely to be able to take care of my own.

This is why Capitalism is the most moral of the economic systems for this reason - it bends our natural, self serving interests towards the service of others. No other economic system achieves this without coercion, and in those systems of coercion, inevitably the interests that get served end up not being each others, but rather the interests of those doing the coercing.

Housing kinda blows your premise.

The state coerces me to participate so I get gouged.

One thing rarely talked about is when capitalism was born nobody knew how big the world was. So they never contemplated a world where every square inch is claimed or owned.

Nor apparently that capital could pool to the point capitalists could simply manipulate supply and demand curves.
 

JohnfrmClevelan

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:lol: The socialism part of it. Want to sell a good or service? Too bad. Want to buy a good or service? Too bad.

That's ridiculous! Socialism doesn't preclude that stuff. You are talking about a command economy.

The big difference between socialism and capitalism is that more people have a stake in the means of production under socialism.
 

Abbazorkzog

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No option for 'all of the above'? It's essentially National Socialism with a pretty face and more Mega-Corporatism thrown in for extra "**** yous"......
 

cpwill

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That's ridiculous! Socialism doesn't preclude that stuff. You are talking about a command economy.

:shrug: that's what socialism is.

I'm aware that there are particular (entertaining) souls who claim that "real" socialism (in the No True Scottsman tradition) isn't coercive because you don't need a state, everyone will just... exchange... via a magic medium.... of something.....

They are wrong. And the proof for that is that, when socialism is tried, it either depends on coercion, or it fails.

The big difference between socialism and capitalism is that more people have a stake in the means of production under socialism.

This is incorrect. In socialism, those who control the means of production are not The People, but rather The Organizers, which is a small clique. In capitalism, everyone controls their own means of production, starting with themselves.
 

JohnfrmClevelan

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:shrug: that's what socialism is.

No, it isn't. Again, see Wiki...

Socialism is a range of economic and social systems characterised by social ownership and democratic control of the means of production;[7] as well as the political ideologies, theories, and movements that aim at their establishment.[8] Social ownership may refer to forms of public, cooperative, or collective ownership; to citizen ownership of equity; or to any combination of these.[9] Although there are many varieties of socialism and there is no single definition encapsulating all of them,[10] social ownership is the common element shared by its various forms.

I'm aware that there are particular (entertaining) souls who claim that "real" socialism (in the No True Scottsman tradition) isn't coercive because you don't need a state, everyone will just... exchange... via a magic medium.... of something.....

They are wrong. And the proof for that is that, when socialism is tried, it either depends on coercion, or it fails.

Like in Western Europe?

I don't know where you come up with your definitions (they don't need a state?????), but they are bordering on wacky.

This is incorrect. In socialism, those who control the means of production are not The People, but rather The Organizers, which is a small clique. In capitalism, everyone controls their own means of production, starting with themselves.

In capitalism, it's the capitalists that control everything, because they own everything. And as we can all painfully see, the result is a concentration of capital, wealth, and income in very few hands.

Your view of socialism, or probably anything that isn't capitalist, is starting to smell very ideologically tainted.
 

cpwill

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No, it isn't. Again, see Wiki...

Ah. Wiki :)

Socialism is a range of economic and social systems characterised by social ownership and democratic control of the means of production

:shrug: this is, of course, false. Capitalism entails democratic ownership of the means of production - each player able to "vote" in the marketplace on each issue that they see fit to vote on, to the degree of the saliency that they choose. Socialism, of course, is at best representative control of the means of production. The People don't take a vote to decide how many pairs of children's shoes to produce next year - the planners do. At best, the planners are elected, and generally, under socialism, they aren't.

Like in Western Europe?

Yes, where states are often highly coercive in a much broader range of activities (though we are not so far behind as all that).

I don't know where you come up with your definitions (they don't need a state?????), but they are bordering on wacky

They are indeed whacky. But if you've really never read about Bakunin and his heirs, I would recommend it to you. You can spend a whole afternoon laughing.

In capitalism, it's the capitalists that control everything, because they own everything.

That's odd. I could have sworn I own my own vehicles, my own land, my own tools, etc.

Ah. You mean that, in capitalism, all of us are capitalists, because all of us own our stuff. Got it.

And as we can all painfully see, the result is a concentration of capital, wealth, and income in very few hands.

:lamo

Whereas, of course, in Socialism, this never happens, and the elite decision makers generally starve to death along with the victims of whatever Great Leap Somewhere we are making this decade. :)

In any economic system, those at the top will have styles and levels of living that are wildly disproportionate to those on bottom. The difference is how you got there - did you get there (as in capitalism) by providing a highly valued good or service to many of your fellow citizens? Or did you get there (as in socialism) by being able to take advantage of your position in government power to coercively steer resources away from others and towards yourself?

Your view of socialism, or probably anything that isn't capitalist, is starting to smell very ideologically tainted.

It's historically tainted. I have an unfortunate ability and interest in reading, which has sadly inoculated me to systems built on broad trust in human leaders and immanentization of the eschaton. :)
 

JohnfrmClevelan

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Yeah, I use sources. I don't just make stuff up and call it an argument.

:shrug: this is, of course, false. Capitalism entails democratic ownership of the means of production - each player able to "vote" in the marketplace on each issue that they see fit to vote on, to the degree of the saliency that they choose. Socialism, of course, is at best representative control of the means of production. The People don't take a vote to decide how many pairs of children's shoes to produce next year - the planners do. At best, the planners are elected, and generally, under socialism, they aren't.

Again, you are talking about a command economy, not socialism.

If you have to change the definitions to win the argument, you lose the argument.
 

Absentglare

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Ah. Wiki :)



:shrug: this is, of course, false. Capitalism entails democratic ownership of the means of production - each player able to "vote" in the marketplace on each issue that they see fit to vote on, to the degree of the saliency that they choose. Socialism, of course, is at best representative control of the means of production. The People don't take a vote to decide how many pairs of children's shoes to produce next year - the planners do. At best, the planners are elected, and generally, under socialism, they aren't.

No, actually, democratic ownership of the means of production would unquestionably be socialism. Perhaps you should study wikipedia instead of sneering at it.
 

cpwill

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Yeah, I use sources. I don't just make stuff up and call it an argument.

:shrug: I haven't made anything up, and cited the source when it would be apt.

Again, you are talking about a command economy, not socialism.

With the exception of the forms of socialist thought already mentioned and dismissed as not plausible you cannot separate the former from the latter.
 

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I often think that the only reason people call themselves capitalist is that they conflate capitalism with free enterprise.

I see them as separate matters. Free enterprise (that is, to choose one's own productive role in society) is very nearly a natural right, but capitalism is not its determinant. I label myself anti-capitalist because I disagree with paying people 50 cents for a dollars worth of economic output. That is, of course, largely based on my perception of capitalism (D & C), just as its proponents undoubtedly support it based on theirs.

I answered D & C. I believe it is imperfect. I believe that those that find capitalism to be "natural" and therefore "perfect" are ignoring a few things:

Time - Capitalism in a vacuum MIGHT be perfect if it wasn't for the component of time. While it might be true that people would choose one company over the other, thus putting the "worse" company out of business. However, how long do we need to wait for this? Why can we not create baseline rules to stop people from wasting their money or being hurt in the meantime.

Human Nature - unlike nearly every other natural system, humans can choose to take more than their own needs. Once they do this they compound the problem by using those gains to increase the disparity even further. Don't get me wrong as I see the irony here - the promise of being on the good side of the disparity is one of the things that makes it work, but that doesn't make it all good. Some disparity is a reward worth striving for. The question is at what level of disparity is the most efficient.

Circular reasoning - pro-capitalists like to point out "what is earned is theirs". The problem is that the earnings allow for increasing the rate of earnings. Sure, when there's ingenuity in there, maybe it is "earned". But for how long? Are patent laws capitalism? Doubtful. But without them, any ingenuity would be instantly copied. So who determines how long ingenuity should pay in a capitalist system?

Human Knowledge - there's no "natural" system to guard a person against fraud. A snake oil salesmen might go out of business after people realize he's selling something useful, but at what point? What if the snake oil salesmen already earned enough savings to start his next fraud without even trying? What if his ability to market his way out of the truth is faster or more sophisticated that the people he's duping?

I could probably keep going. The short of it is that capitalism is good at taking something and turning a profit with it. Very little else can be said with certainty.
 

What if...?

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The state forces you to purchase a house?

Requires that somebody pay to legally sleep, yes.

Its pretty much illegal to NOT participate in our current iteration of capitalism.

Our "birthright" as a human born of earth is negated by private property.

There's lots of good things about capitalism. But it is not without coercion.

Nature coerces me to not die. So those who own all the resources have a built in advantage. It is what it is.
 

cpwill

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Requires that somebody pay to legally sleep, yes.

:) OK, I'll buy. What department is in charge of collecting the Sleep Tax?

Its pretty much illegal to NOT participate in our current iteration of capitalism.

Not really. Feel free to organize a co-op, and live there, in beautiful, beautiful, Socialism.

Our "birthright" as a human born of earth is negated by private property.

On the contrary, your birthright is taken from you by those who strip from you your rights, starting with your property rights.

There's lots of good things about capitalism. But it is not without coercion.

Hm. Well, the government ideally users coercion to protect your rights.

Nature coerces me to not die.

Not all that effectively. You can effectively kill yourself (or ineffectively kill yourself).

So those who own all the resources have a built in advantage. It is what it is.

The one who owns [by which I mean, controls for their benefit] "all the resources" in capitalism is the populace. In alternative forms of organization, it is politicians. Between myself and D.C., I know who I trust more with my life and my labor.
 

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I often think that the only reason people call themselves capitalist is that they conflate capitalism with free enterprise.

I see them as separate matters. Free enterprise (that is, to choose one's own productive role in society) is very nearly a natural right, but capitalism is not its determinant. I label myself anti-capitalist because I disagree with paying people 50 cents for a dollars worth of economic output. That is, of course, largely based on my perception of capitalism (D & C), just as its proponents undoubtedly support it based on theirs.

well, you can say the two are separate matters, but no other economic system allows for free enterprise... so , i dunno...it might not be smart to attempt to separate the two.

that's a odd reason to call yourself an anti-capitalist....I mean, labor compensation is a big part of things, but it's not the ONLY consideration a reasonable person would or should take into account.
 
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