Evil Right Wing Fascism will eventually win

How should society be organised, if at all?

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Gary Childress
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Immanuel Can wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 3:56 am
Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 3:23 am No. IC. Most socialists don't support authoritarianism. Read up on it sometime.
"Most socialists"? You mean like the National Socialists in Germany, or the international Socialists in Russia? Or were you thinking of China, Cuba, North Korea, Vietnam, Venezuela, Angola, Zimbabwe...? Those socialists are the ones who don't support authoritarianism, you say? Or do those not count as "socialists"?

You mean American socialists? And you think they're special and different, so they won't go that route? Well, right now they declare that they want to take private property, they want a massive expansion of government, they want to suppress free speech, they want to socialize medicine and education totally, they want to control the economy, they want veto power over all the media, they want to eliminate national sovereignty...at what point is any of that NOT authoritarian? :shock:

And what would it take for them to ask for before you went, "Hey, that's a bit authoritarian"?

Don't worry...I'm very well read up on it. You actually probably have no idea how well.
Most of the primary theorists of socialism in the West generally speak of "democracy". Most socialist countries in the West are social democracies, not totalitarian. Whether or not socialism is consistent with democracy is perhaps questionable but so is it questionable whether private ownership over the means of mass production is.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:06 am ...socialist countries in the West...
Name one.

The Nordic Countries? Nope https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydor ... db289d74ad. Denmark? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RO7wgS5tdz4 Canada? Nope. It has socialized medicine, some welfare, and some standardization of public schooling...but is actually a free-market capitalist economy, very close to the US model.

So where are these "socialist countries" of the West, to which we should look to see what "good socialism" would look like?
Gary Childress
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Immanuel Can wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:24 am
Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:06 am ...socialist countries in the West...
Name one.

The Nordic Countries? Nope https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydor ... db289d74ad. Denmark? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RO7wgS5tdz4 Canada? Nope. It has socialized medicine, some welfare, and some standardization of public schooling...but is actually a free-market capitalist economy, very close to the US model.

So where are these "socialist countries" of the West, to which we should look to see what "good socialism" would look like?
Here. Some thoughtful analysis may help:

https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/socialism/

Particularly from the article:
In contrast to capitalism, socialism can be defined as a type of society in which, at a minimum, (i) is turned into (i*):

(i*) The bulk of the means of production is under social, democratic control.
An important point about this definition of socialism is that socialism is not equivalent to, and is arguably in conflict with, statism. (i*) involves expansion of social power—power based on the capacity to mobilize voluntary cooperation and collective action—as distinct from state power—power based on the control of rule-making and rule enforcing over a territory—as well of economic power—power based on the control of material resources (Wright 2010). If a state controls the economy but is not in turn democratically controlled by the individuals engaged in economic life, what we have is some form of statism, not socialism (see also Arnold n.d. in Other Internet Resources (OIR); Dardot & Laval 2014).
EDIT: And you should probably stop reading Forbes or listening to "Doctor Joby" if you want to know what socialism is about.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:35 am
So where are these "socialist countries" of the West, to which we should look to see what "good socialism" would look like?
Here. Some thoughtful analysis may help:
The name of a country would "help." You said there were such in the West, did you not?

Let's have just one example of where Socialism has produced anything but exploitation, inequality, poverty, misery, repression and death. Just one. That's not too much to ask before we all sell out to it, is it?
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Immanuel Can wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:41 am
Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:35 am
So where are these "socialist countries" of the West, to which we should look to see what "good socialism" would look like?
Here. Some thoughtful analysis may help:
The name of a country would "help." You said there were such in the West, did you not?

Let's have just one example of where Socialism has produced anything but exploitation, inequality, poverty, misery, repression and death. Just one. That's not too much to ask before we all sell out to it, is it?
I thought at the very least England is? Or are we now calling it a "capitalist" country too. It's difficult to keep up with the changes sometimes.
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Re: Evil Right Wing Fascism will eventually win

Post by Gary Childress »

Or better yet, list some non-western countries that you think are "socialist". List some countries that you think are "capitalist".
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Immanuel Can
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:43 am I thought at the very least England is?
No, it's not. And it's really never been, so nothing much has changed there, Gary.

It's true that it flirted briefly with limited socialism after the war, but that was decisively ended with Thatcher's reforms. Politically, it's a nominal monarchy with an actual parliamentary democratic government, which does not hold control of the economy. The economy itself is preponderantly capitalist.

But were you suggesting that the US would do better by becoming England? Would you really think so?
Gary Childress
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

Post by Gary Childress »

Immanuel Can wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:57 am
Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:43 am I thought at the very least England is?
No, it's not. And it's really never been, so nothing much has changed there, Gary.

It's true that it flirted briefly with limited socialism after the war, but that was decisively ended with Thatcher's reforms. Politically, it's a nominal monarchy with an actual parliamentary democratic government, which does not hold control of the economy. The economy itself is preponderantly capitalist.

But were you suggesting that the US would do better by becoming England? Would you really think so?
I don't know. Is the US a "capitalist" country? I thought we had "big government" over here.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Evil Right Wing Fascism will eventually win

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Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:53 am Or better yet, list some non-western countries that you think are "socialist".
Well, I gave you a bunch. And they never stopped talking about being Socialists either. The National Socialist Party of Germany was obviously Socialist. So was the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. China has just recently relinquished some of its economics from the paralyzing grip of government socialist control, and North Korea's still firmly Socialist. We've got Cuba, Venezuela, Vietnam, various nations in postcolonial Africa...how many cases do you want?

Now, you might say, "Well, my socialism isn't Angolan, or North Korean, or Albanian, or Romanian, or Venezuelan...but if you do, then where has "your kind of socialism" ever been performed? We should see it once, before plunging in, surely...

What you see if you look around is that there is not a single polity anywhere where Socialism has led to anything but disasters in both economics and human rights. So at some point, you've got to ask yourself why. And we'd best know the answer before we plunge into such a mistake again, hadn't we?
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Immanuel Can
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:01 am I don't know. Is the US a "capitalist" country? I thought we had "big government" over here.
Economically? Sure. And yeah, you have more government than you need, and more than it's good for your people to have, for sure. But it's not as big as the Socialists in the US want it to be, not by a long chalk. They want everything significant to be government-regulated.
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Re: Evil Right Wing Fascism will eventually win

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Immanuel Can wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:10 am
Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:53 am Or better yet, list some non-western countries that you think are "socialist".
Well, I gave you a bunch. And they never stopped talking about being Socialists either. The National Socialist Party of Germany was obviously Socialist. So was the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. China has just recently relinquished some of its economics from the paralyzing grip of government socialist control, and North Korea's still firmly Socialist. We've got Cuba, Venezuela, Vietnam, various nations in postcolonial Africa...how many cases do you want?

Now, you might say, "Well, my socialism isn't Angolan, or North Korean, or Albanian, or Romanian, or Venezuelan...but if you do, then where has "your kind of socialism" ever been performed? We should see it once, before plunging in, surely...

What you see if you look around is that there is not a single polity anywhere where Socialism has led to anything but disasters in both economics and human rights. So at some point, you've got to ask yourself why. And we'd best know the answer before we plunge into such a mistake again, hadn't we?
Talk is cheap. Does the Democratic People's Republic of Korea prove that democracy is a failure? Look at the definition of socialism I gave above and then ask yourself which countries fit that definition. Do the workers control the government of China or North Korea?

And if socialism has never really existed, has capitalism ever really existed? When was there ever "capitalism"?
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Immanuel Can wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:13 am
Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:01 am I don't know. Is the US a "capitalist" country? I thought we had "big government" over here.
Economically? Sure. And yeah, you have more government than you need, and more than it's good for your people to have, for sure. But it's not as big as the Socialists in the US want it to be, not by a long chalk. They want everything significant to be government-regulated.
Don't kid yourself IC. Private enterprise is out for profit. That's it. Without regulations we'd have another Love Canal and we wouldn't be typing on computers right now. Who do you think funded all the R&D for computers, lasers, etc. It wasn't private industry. It was the transfer of taxes into military research.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Evil Right Wing Fascism will eventually win

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Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:15 am Do the workers control the government of China or North Korea?
The workers never end up controlling anything anywhere.

They talk about it, but what happens instead is that a strong man takes over by becoming the figurehead, the leader of the revolution. The collectivist rhetoric is used to level the population and to justify cruelty to any who seem "privileged," or may present a rival to the leader, as they are called "enemies of the revolution," their very success being held as evidence of their anti-revolutionary guilt; after all, how could they be doing better than the levelled ones without cheating? (so goes the reasoning) Special success becomes the mark of treachery, and equal-failure the mark of revolutionary conformity.

Socialism instantly produces authoritarian leaders who exploit the people. It's happened in every case. Consider Tito or Ceaucescu, or the Kim Jongs, Mao or Stalin, Hitler or Castro, Maduro or Mugabe...it always happens.
And if socialism has never really existed, has capitalism ever really existed? When was there ever "capitalism"?
Well, capitalism is an economic arrangement, not a comprehensive, collectivist political ideology like Socialism is. As such, it does not have or imply a "pure" form, and exists in different but significant degrees in all Western countries, and in a variety of others as well. Even China has a limited experiment going with what's called "Red Capitalism," meaning capitalist business practices overseen by the authoritarian Socialists in Beijing.

But capitalism can potentially become exploitative too. So it has to be watched. And competition can become unfair, so there need to be rules in the game to prevent things like monopoly or price-fixing. However, the good thing is that capitalism doesn't come bundled with a comprehensive political ideology; it's much more pragmatic in practice than Socialism. It requires rules of the game, but does not preset how the game will turn out. That's determined by the free market itself.

And that's one big difference between the American Left and the American centrists. America has traditionally looked to a system of "checks and balances" to limit the authority of government. This is because they have recognized centralized governments for what they are: not a positive good but a necessary evil. We can't get along without government, but we also cannot trust it. So it must be permitted but watched closely and justly limited. In contrast, the American Left holds that government is a positive good -- it is, in fact, salvific and the hope of the nation. The more areas of private life fall under the control of big government, the better we all will be, goes the thinking. So far from government being limited, it must be expanded unreservedly: it must come to own education, health care, welfare...indeed the entire economy, which Socialism imagines it will then manage for the public good.

But it will not. It never has. Not once. What it does instead is use that centralized control to concentrate power and privilege in the few autocrats who run the collective, and most particularly in "the great leader," then distributed downward at his discretion to whatever lower administrators he wishes to use to control the population. In other words, it runs on pure political corruption, and treats the economy as a tool of its own advantage. And then equality comes simply to mean the equal misery of the populace.

So far, it's never gone any other way. But somehow, people keep thinking that if THEY ran a Socialist system, THEY would be wiser than everybody else has ever been, and it would go differently this time. It never does, but they keep thinking it will.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: "what is your view of fascism?"

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Gary Childress wrote: Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:17 am Private enterprise is out for profit.
Of course. So is almost everybody, actually. Few and far between are those who are not. So it's best to realize that most of the people with whom one is bound to deal are going to be focused on self-interest first, and are not going to make particularly noble "friends of the good society." Human nature is often selfish, acquisitive, competitive and ambitious. We can't pretend otherwise, without being naive.

Keeping the market free is an expression of recognizing and dealing with this. Government is permitted to keep the competition fair, by breaking up monopolies and regulating how the game is played; but human self-interest is used as the driver of progress. That's smart, because human self-interest is a constant. One can recognize that and harness it as best we can (Capitalism), or pretend we're all actually not self-interested at all, but rather committed to the benefit of others, and thus let those who are uninhibitedly self-interested dominate us (Socialism).
Who do you think funded all the R&D for computers, lasers, etc. It wasn't private industry. It was the transfer of taxes into military research.
Well, "military research" has produced a few things, like the internet, say, which was originally a scheme for preserving military and medical information. But now, look at what has happened to it? It's hardly a place of careful centralized planning and Socialist control: it's the wild west.

However, most inventions have happened as a result of private enterprise and private individuals. Government has neither the imagination, nor the skills, nor the incentive to do much inventing. It just aims at exploiting what others have invented.
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henry quirk
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fascism won't win: look to history, look to yourself

Post by henry quirk »

*the state socialist: tells you what to do and how to do it; he's utopia gone sour

**the state capitalist: rides you to the bank, sayin' you should thank him in the process; he's self-interest gone sour

***the free enterpriser: merely transacts with you, as supplier and demander; he's just a free man









*the only kind that actually exists

**the kind that inevitably comes to be

***me
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