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Thread: Is Hong Kong Really The Libertarian Paradise Libertarians Claim It To Be?

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    Contributor ruby sparks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Derec View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DBT View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Harvestdancer View Post
    Why do people keep repeating the fantasy that Scandinavia is Socialist?
    Most, if not all, western democracies are a blend of capitalism and socialism.
    I would not call it a blend exactly. They are merely capitalist countries with a strong safety net.
    As well as a strong welfare safety net, they have higher levels of public ownership and state employment than in more purely capitalist countries.

    It's a blend.

    That said, I think it's more capitalist than socialist, and has become more so during the last 20 years.

  2. Top | #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Harvestdancer View Post
    If a critic of redistribution uses the word "socialism" in their criticism, people like you jump in to say "oh no, you can't call it socialism, because it isn't collective ownership of the means of production."
    umm... sounds more like you are describing communism I think..

    Seems to me whenever you start criticizing 'socialists' and 'socialism' it tends to be by either ascribing positions/policies/beliefs to liberals that they don't actually hold (such as describing communism or fascism) or by fearmongering bogus claims of what 'socialism' will cause, which never reflect reality. Basically rehashing old anti-communism propaganda of the 40's, 50's, and 60's and applying it to anything you disagree with.


    Based on that, can I assume you define "socialism" not in terms of the policies it promotes, but only if the person using it is doing to in a positive manner? Is "socialism" not a policy but simply a synonym for "I like it and think it is good"?
    No, I define it in terms of policies. If the policy is handled in a competent manner is a different issue.

    However I've seen plenty of republicans use terms like communism and fascism in a manner that is a synonym for "someone I disagree with politically" with no understanding as to what those political systems actually are like.

    .... I'm guessing you are against Medicare for all... are you against Medicare existing as it is? Were you also against the ACA as spreading socialism too? I don't want to falsely attribute positions to you, so just checking.

  3. Top | #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by DBT View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Derec View Post

    I would not call it a blend exactly. They are merely capitalist countries with a strong safety net.
    That safety net entails socialist Ideals of collective welfare. Which does not mean that western democracies are Socialist in true sense of the term, which I did not say or claim, only that there are values in common between them, a blend. It was the state (public money) that bailed out private industry, the banks etc, during the GFC, for example.
    No. Public ownership implies the public controls the means of production. A safety net supported by taxes simply means they have to give up some of what they make, but it doesn't mean giving up control.

    Public control of business has a disastrous track record.

  4. Top | #24
    Contributor ruby sparks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post
    Public control of business has a disastrous track record.
    “In reality, the Nordic economies do not provide any support for the idea that relatively high levels of state ownership are incompatible with stable and successful economies. Sweden has 48 state-owned enterprises, Finland has 67, and Norway has 74.”

    https://www.currentaffairs.org/2018/07/there-is-nothing-inherently-wrong-with-state-ownership

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    Contributor DBT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DBT View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Derec View Post

    I would not call it a blend exactly. They are merely capitalist countries with a strong safety net.
    That safety net entails socialist Ideals of collective welfare. Which does not mean that western democracies are Socialist in true sense of the term, which I did not say or claim, only that there are values in common between them, a blend. It was the state (public money) that bailed out private industry, the banks etc, during the GFC, for example.
    No. Public ownership implies the public controls the means of production. A safety net supported by taxes simply means they have to give up some of what they make, but it doesn't mean giving up control.

    Public control of business has a disastrous track record.
    But public bailouts of failed private corporations in order to prevent a global disaster, aka, the GFC 2007, is ok?

    And as I pointed out earlier, socialism comes in different forms, which means that there are different models. The label "Socialism' is a relatively broad term.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DBT View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Derec View Post

    I would not call it a blend exactly. They are merely capitalist countries with a strong safety net.
    That safety net entails socialist Ideals of collective welfare. Which does not mean that western democracies are Socialist in true sense of the term, which I did not say or claim, only that there are values in common between them, a blend. It was the state (public money) that bailed out private industry, the banks etc, during the GFC, for example.
    No. Public ownership implies the public controls the means of production.
    No, it does not. It means the public owns the business. Just like shareholders may not try to control the operations of a business, the public owners may not try to control the operations of the business.

  7. Top | #27
    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
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    In America, "socialism" has one very specific meaning. In the UK, the word has a different very specific meaning.

    Why the fuck anyone would derail a discussion about government and the economy with a diatribe against one use of the word, and a demand that everyone use the word their way (particularly when it's bloody obvious that they couldn't have meant what the idiot is claiming they have to mean) I don't know.

    Americans don't speak the same language as the British. Get the fuck over it.

    I won't get pissed about it though, as I have to maintain a zero blood alcohol level for my job.

  8. Top | #28
    Contributor DBT's Avatar
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    It seems that the US is still living with the residue of the 'Reds under the bed' era.

  9. Top | #29
    Contributor ruby sparks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DBT View Post
    It seems that the US is still living with the residue of the 'Reds under the bed' era.
    Indeed. I don't even think it's a residue, I think there's plenty of it left in the dish, and it's being topped up as we go along. Imo, there seem to be Orwellian aspects to it. Subtle mass control, even if not by the same means or to that '1984' extent. And why would the wealthy and powerful elites (oligarchs might not be too strong a word) not want to brainwash the people in that way, since the former have much to lose otherwise, and many, quite possibly most, of the latter have something to gain?
    Last edited by ruby sparks; 12-10-2019 at 09:42 AM.

  10. Top | #30
    Contributor ruby sparks's Avatar
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    None of the above suggests a full-blown or formal conspiracy. That level of co-ordination would not be necessary, and in many ways those responsible are in direct competition with each other, not colluding. Though I would not rule out some informal co-ordination to further shared vested interests, where they exist and arise, in political or politico-economic allegiances for example. Politics, economics (especially wealth) and materialism (via consumerism) can't easily be disentangled. And for those who might shy away from the word 'brainwash'....hm. Would ‘manipulate’ and/or 'propagandize' be more appropriate? I myself am prepared to stick with brainwashing, at a pinch, and on a huge scale. And the good news (irony alert) is that it's getting easier and easier to do it, in increasingly more complex and subtle and sometimes devious ways, in the digital age. Which may be more the topic of another thread that is currently active here.
    Last edited by ruby sparks; 12-10-2019 at 12:20 PM.

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