Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

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FlashDangerpants
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Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by FlashDangerpants » Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:49 pm

I have been called all sorts of names. Round these parts, Mannie thinks I'm a socialist, Henry thinks everyone is a commie, Veggie called me a neoliberal once and then forgot. I was once even accused of Toryism, for which slur I considered issuing a challenge to fisticuffs! I've decided that Veggy made most sense though. But it's a term that gets thrown around with reckless abandon, so here's what they have on the homepage of the neoliberal subreddit, it seems enough to get going with:
r/neoliberal wrote: We do not all subscribe to a single comprehensive philosophy but instead find common ground in shared sentiments and approaches to public policy.
  • Individual choice and markets are of paramount importance both as an expression of individual liberty and driving force of economic prosperity.
  • The state serves an important role in establishing conditions favorable to competition through preventing monopoly, providing a stable monetary framework, and relieving acute misery and distress.
  • Free exchange and movement between countries makes us richer and has led to an unparalleled decline in global poverty.
  • Public policy has global ramifications and should take into account the effect it has on people around the world regardless of nationality.
Neoliberalism stands in opposition to multiple sets of political thought out there today which in our view are propelled by motivated reasoning. These are usually either explicitly or implicitly utopian beliefs - even the horrifying racist ones.

All forms of populism for instance are basically click bait headlines masquerading as policy: "this one simple trick to Make America Great Again", "see how millions of guaranteed jobs cured global warming". None of the noteworthy problems of our society are fixable with one simple trick, and none of the simple tricks proposed can possibly have only the desired outcome. The basic neoliberal position is that it is insane to set public policy without considering the ways in which it changes people's incentives, because that is the factor that most determines whether or not you will get the change you intended.

People who dislike neoliberalism tend to focus on something that it is not. Apparently we we want corporations to dominate government (not true), and we want corporations to profit at the expense of people (meaningless on the whole, untrue for the rest). But some times you guys get round to hating for for true things...

The lefties hate us because...
From the left we are loathed for wanting public services to be provided by private companies (which we do when it makes sense, and we don't when it doesn't). We are pretty strongly wedded to free markets - which for some is sort of spiritually evil even when it clearly works well. We like those markets to be kept in line by strong regulators who can prevent fraud, market manipulation and so on. We don't like those markets to be controlled by state owned corporations, or local ownership rules, or any of the stuff that they do in China or France. We approve of reducing poverty by simple, workable methods such as cash transfers, educational support etc. We don't approve of trying to run people's lives for them by creating special jobs for people, or Procrustean efforts to rearrange the wage structures of private companies. We sort of tend to prefer flexible systems for universal provision of health, education and so on, we don't tend to view these things as a natural state monopoly, but we do view them as an essential service set which must be guaranteed by the state one way or another.

And the right hates us just as much because...
On the right we are weak on immigration (which used to be a left wing complaint but you guys just trade that shit from time to time) and largely we don't care about that because nobody should be strong on immigration. And the right (again, previously the left) now hates us because we think economic nationalism is stupid (which it demonstrably is). They also don't like us because we don't think very highly of the Laffer Curve, or trickle down economics in general, we dispute the whole notion that lower taxes on the rich creates a whole bunch of jobs. We don't dispute the science of global warming etc, and we mostly seem to think that a non-distorting revenue neutral carbon tax is a better way to address it than silly carbon trading schemes. Most neloibs probably do support minimum wages. Almost all neolibs do support universal insurance for health, unemployment and so on, Hardened righties think these are socialist objectives, actually socialists think that too, you are all wrong.

That leaves some other stuff. Neoliberalism is fundamentally Liberal. For our confused American friends, that means we leave you to your own business whenever we can, not that other shit you guys bleat about. Liberalism at heart separates out a sphere of public life where your behaviour must meet society's standards of not killing people and wearing some clothes, and your private sphere where your behaviour is subject entirely to your own conscience and you decide what the hell you want to wear (if anything) in your own damn house. The general idea is that the private sphere should be maximised. So that means there's a whole large slice of life for which there should be no neoliberal position whatsoever beyond not caring.

So there you go. I think neoliberalism is mostly good, and more of you should be neolib shills with me.

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vegetariantaxidermy
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by vegetariantaxidermy » Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:03 pm

You can make anything look 'good' on paper. The reality is far from the case. So called 'neo-liberalism' has destroyed economies all around the world. Their darling Milton Friedman and his laughable 'trickle-down' bullshit never happened, and the only 'trickle down' was keeping wages low for the general population and high for all the bloated administrators and hangers-on who have hijacked the health system and other previously Govt. run organisations.
The only beneficiaries of 'neo-liberal' Govts. are their Big Business buddies. 'Neo-liberal' Govts. are a hornets nest of corruption. They encompass all the worst aspects of 'the left' (in a cynical, self-serving way) without any of its kinder, people-centric policies.
Ironically, it's 'neo-liberal' Govts. that tell us we should 'trust them' because they know what's best i.e. best for their own exploding bank balances (and the record-breaking debts they lumber the rest of us with). Their borrowing is always out of control, with never any indication of exactly what they have spent it on. It's certainly not health care or education, or any of the other things that increase the well-being of the general population.
Why are 'neo-liberal' Govts. soft on immigration? Because it brings in lots of lovely cheap labour--which is great for Big Business (especially off-shore corporations) and keeps wages down, but fucks the local population (which neo-liberal Govts. don't give a flying fuck about), hence their adoption of the worst of the so-called 'left' i.e. PC and its war on free speech.
Last edited by vegetariantaxidermy on Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

FlashDangerpants
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by FlashDangerpants » Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:23 pm

What I wrote...
FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:49 pm
They also don't like us because we don't think very highly of the Laffer Curve, or trickle down economics in general, we dispute the whole notion that lower taxes on the rich creates a whole bunch of jobs.
An invalid complaint against that would be...
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:03 pm
Their darling Milton Friedman and his laughable 'trickle-down' bullshit never happened
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:03 pm
Why are 'neo-liberal' Govts. soft on immigration? Because it brings in lots of lovely cheap labour--which is great for Big Business (especially off-shore corporations) and keeps wages down, but fucks the local population (which neo-liberal Govts. don't give a flying fuck about)
That isn't the effect that immigration has. Protecting wages by keeping closed shops only works for expensive well paid professions (doctors, lawyers etc). For everybody it is a short term solution, taxi drivers for instance whose incomes are not holding well today up in those places where they were artificially inflated with licensing schemes.

Endless studies have have been done to look for any real effect that immigrants have on wages, if there's anything to be seen at all there, it is almost too small to measure. The current consensus seems to be that there is an extremely small downward pressure on the wages of the very least educated locals, but it's a rounding error sort of number, it may not exist at all.

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henry quirk
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Neoliberalism: micro-assessment

Post by henry quirk » Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:26 pm

"Henry thinks everyone is a commie"

Not everyone, no. Hell, most of the folks who live in state communisms aren't (cuz they know from experience what a crapsack state communism is). The 'commies' are those who embrace the ideal, believe it can be practically realized, but who have no experience of it (cuz the ideal is a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow).

r/neoliberal wrote:We do not all subscribe to a single comprehensive philosophy but instead find common ground in shared sentiments and approaches to public policy.

too many cooks spoils the gumbo...one principle to serve them all (life, liberty, property)

#
  • Individual choice and markets are of paramount importance both as an expression of individual liberty and driving force of economic prosperity.
no problem with this...free enterprise, though...avoid that debbil state capitalism

#
  • The state serves an important role in establishing conditions favorable to competition through preventing monopoly, providing a stable monetary framework, and relieving acute misery and distress.
if the state is minimal only natural monopolies can exist, gimme that gold & :gun:, get thee -- hat in hand -- to the charity (you might find me volunteering' there)

#
  • Free exchange and movement between countries makes us richer and has led to an unparalleled decline in global poverty.
as long as those passin' between don't get freebies: sure

#
  • Public policy has global ramifications and should take into account the effect it has on people around the world regardless of nationality.

    don't violate life, liberty, property: anything goes

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Immanuel Can
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by Immanuel Can » Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm

FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:49 pm
I have been called all sorts of names. Round these parts, Mannie thinks I'm a socialist...
Actually, I have no personal opinion on that. I don't know you well enough to know what you are, politically. And I don't ever recall having called you anything in particular.

But to add to your point, I never heard the term "Neo-Liberal" until recently. And so far, you're the only person I've heard want to claim it. When I first heard it, it came out of the mouths of strident ideological Leftists, as a sort of bogeyman for everything they hate. They're great at coining such words -- "patriarchy," "neo-cons," "Nazis," "alt-Right," and so on -- but like those terms, I've found it's generally just a Leftist pejorative for anybody who disagrees with their ideas.

I choose not to play that game. It strikes me as very silly, and not a little malicious. So I'm happy to let you speak for yourself, as to whether or not you want to regard yourself as a "Socialist," a "Neo-Liberal," or anything else.

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vegetariantaxidermy
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by vegetariantaxidermy » Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm

FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:23 pm
What I wrote...
FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:49 pm
They also don't like us because we don't think very highly of the Laffer Curve, or trickle down economics in general, we dispute the whole notion that lower taxes on the rich creates a whole bunch of jobs.
An invalid complaint against that would be...
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:03 pm
Their darling Milton Friedman and his laughable 'trickle-down' bullshit never happened
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:03 pm
Why are 'neo-liberal' Govts. soft on immigration? Because it brings in lots of lovely cheap labour--which is great for Big Business (especially off-shore corporations) and keeps wages down, but fucks the local population (which neo-liberal Govts. don't give a flying fuck about)
That isn't the effect that immigration has. Protecting wages by keeping closed shops only works for expensive well paid professions (doctors, lawyers etc). For everybody it is a short term solution, taxi drivers for instance whose incomes are not holding well today up in those places where they were artificially inflated with licensing schemes.

Endless studies have have been done to look for any real effect that immigrants have on wages, if there's anything to be seen at all there, it is almost too small to measure. The current consensus seems to be that there is an extremely small downward pressure on the wages of the very least educated locals, but it's a rounding error sort of number, it may not exist at all.
'Endless studies'. Like I said, you can say anything you like--the reality speaks for itself. Wages have stagnated in the past couple of decades while rents have sky-rocketed.
I thought you were more intelligent than that. Of course a large company is going to prefer to pay $18 an hour for cheap immigrant labour rather than $40 for local (never mind that the immigrant builders are practically worthless). They are also given Govt. housing while the local homeless population (that used to be nonexistent) is sky high.
It's hardly rocket science. And do you know what they are being told? That locals are 'too lazy to work' which is why imports are needed. Funny how no one is allowed to criticise them, for fear of being charged with 'hate speech', yet they can come here and spew racist bullshit like that?
Actually I'm fucking sick of phoning my bank and every other call centre to get someone who can barely speak English and I can't understand a word they say (and it's not even an overseas based call centre!) How can that be good for business? But of course locals are 'too lazy' to even work in call centres apparently, preferring to live off an unemployment benefit that is below half of the minimum wage. Yeah right.

FlashDangerpants
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by FlashDangerpants » Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:14 pm

vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:23 pm
What I wrote...
FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:49 pm
They also don't like us because we don't think very highly of the Laffer Curve, or trickle down economics in general, we dispute the whole notion that lower taxes on the rich creates a whole bunch of jobs.
An invalid complaint against that would be...
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:03 pm
Their darling Milton Friedman and his laughable 'trickle-down' bullshit never happened
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:03 pm
Why are 'neo-liberal' Govts. soft on immigration? Because it brings in lots of lovely cheap labour--which is great for Big Business (especially off-shore corporations) and keeps wages down, but fucks the local population (which neo-liberal Govts. don't give a flying fuck about)
That isn't the effect that immigration has. Protecting wages by keeping closed shops only works for expensive well paid professions (doctors, lawyers etc). For everybody it is a short term solution, taxi drivers for instance whose incomes are not holding well today up in those places where they were artificially inflated with licensing schemes.

Endless studies have have been done to look for any real effect that immigrants have on wages, if there's anything to be seen at all there, it is almost too small to measure. The current consensus seems to be that there is an extremely small downward pressure on the wages of the very least educated locals, but it's a rounding error sort of number, it may not exist at all.
'Endless studies'. Like I said, you can say anything you like--the reality speaks for itself. Wages have stagnated in the past couple of decades while rents have sky-rocketed.
There are plenty of people out there who would like nothing more than to find an error in the methodology of those studies. You are welcome to try as well if you want.

Rents haven't sky-rocketed everywhere. They have done so in cities with strict zoning regulations. There are remedies for this, banning immigration to fix a housing supply issue is probably not among the better ones.
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
I thought you were more intelligent than that. Of course a large company is going to prefer to pay $18 an hour for cheap immigrant labour rather than $40 for local (never mind that the immigrant builders are practically worthless). They are also given Govt. housing while the local homeless population (that used to be nonexistent) is sky high.
I hope immigrant builders aren't worthless, half of London was built by Irish brickies.

There is no neolibeal basis to any policy of maintaining some set of homeless people. It was specifically stated in the OP that the state should relieve acute misery which includes this. To the extent that we are not providing adequate shelter for some of our populations, we are failing at a neolibeal ideal and more or less all neolibs would actually provide suggestions for how to fix that by providing shelter for them.
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
It's hardly rocket science. And do you know what they are being told? That locals are 'too lazy to work' which is why imports are needed. Funny how no one is allowed to criticise them, for fear of being charged with 'hate speech', yet they can come here and spew racist bullshit like that?
Unless a person is saying something much worse and more threatening than you are letting on, it isn't very liberal to punish hate speech, so it isn't very neoliberal either. The "too lazy to work" thing is more of a conservative trope than a liberal one as well. Neoliberals are into providing education and skills upgrades for those who need them in order to find better jobs and so on. Protectionism doesn't work either way.
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
Actually I'm fucking sick of phoning my bank and every other call centre to get someone who can barely speak English and I can't understand a word they say (and it's not even an overseas based call centre!) How can that be good for business? But of course locals are 'too lazy' to even work in call centres apparently, preferring to live off an unemployment benefit that is below half of the minimum wage. Yeah right.
Last time I spoke to an Indian call centre it was perfectly for us to understand each other.

Either way, you can try to use regulation to pretend the world isn't changing until you run out of money, or you can use the tools you have to find a way to move with the times. Both options are available as choices, but doing one and calling it the other is not workable. Call centres aren't such a great hill to die on, just like they aren't great places to work.

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vegetariantaxidermy
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by vegetariantaxidermy » Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:21 pm

FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:14 pm
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:23 pm
What I wrote...

An invalid complaint against that would be...



That isn't the effect that immigration has. Protecting wages by keeping closed shops only works for expensive well paid professions (doctors, lawyers etc). For everybody it is a short term solution, taxi drivers for instance whose incomes are not holding well today up in those places where they were artificially inflated with licensing schemes.

Endless studies have have been done to look for any real effect that immigrants have on wages, if there's anything to be seen at all there, it is almost too small to measure. The current consensus seems to be that there is an extremely small downward pressure on the wages of the very least educated locals, but it's a rounding error sort of number, it may not exist at all.
'Endless studies'. Like I said, you can say anything you like--the reality speaks for itself. Wages have stagnated in the past couple of decades while rents have sky-rocketed.
There are plenty of people out there who would like nothing more than to find an error in the methodology of those studies. You are welcome to try as well if you want.

Rents haven't sky-rocketed everywhere. They have done so in cities with strict zoning regulations. There are remedies for this, banning immigration to fix a housing supply issue is probably not among the better ones.
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
I thought you were more intelligent than that. Of course a large company is going to prefer to pay $18 an hour for cheap immigrant labour rather than $40 for local (never mind that the immigrant builders are practically worthless). They are also given Govt. housing while the local homeless population (that used to be nonexistent) is sky high.
I hope immigrant builders aren't worthless, half of London was built by Irish brickies.

There is no neolibeal basis to any policy of maintaining some set of homeless people. It was specifically stated in the OP that the state should relieve acute misery which includes this. To the extent that we are not providing adequate shelter for some of our populations, we are failing at a neolibeal ideal and more or less all neolibs would actually provide suggestions for how to fix that by providing shelter for them.
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
It's hardly rocket science. And do you know what they are being told? That locals are 'too lazy to work' which is why imports are needed. Funny how no one is allowed to criticise them, for fear of being charged with 'hate speech', yet they can come here and spew racist bullshit like that?
Unless a person is saying something much worse and more threatening than you are letting on, it isn't very liberal to punish hate speech, so it isn't very neoliberal either. The "too lazy to work" thing is more of a conservative trope than a liberal one as well. Neoliberals are into providing education and skills upgrades for those who need them in order to find better jobs and so on. Protectionism doesn't work either way.
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
Actually I'm fucking sick of phoning my bank and every other call centre to get someone who can barely speak English and I can't understand a word they say (and it's not even an overseas based call centre!) How can that be good for business? But of course locals are 'too lazy' to even work in call centres apparently, preferring to live off an unemployment benefit that is below half of the minimum wage. Yeah right.
Last time I spoke to an Indian call centre it was perfectly for us to understand each other.

Either way, you can try to use regulation to pretend the world isn't changing until you run out of money, or you can use the tools you have to find a way to move with the times. Both options are available as choices, but doing one and calling it the other is not workable. Call centres aren't such a great hill to die on, just like they aren't great places to work.
Why would you assume I was talking about an Indian? The problem with labels is that they become so abused that they end up meaningless. 'So-called 'neo-liberal' Govts. are 'conservative' ones.

FlashDangerpants
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by FlashDangerpants » Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:29 pm

Immanuel Can wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
I never heard the term "Neo-Liberal" until recently. And so far, you're the only person I've heard want to claim it.
It was basically abandoned as a term many decades ago, having never stood for anything exactly concrete. When termed it was a sort of catch all for not this and not that (socialism at one end, laissez faire at the other) and a general obedience to accumulations of fact.
Immanuel Can wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:32 pm
When I first heard it, it came out of the mouths of strident ideological Leftists, as a sort of bogeyman for everything they hate. They're great at coining such words -- "patriarchy," "neo-cons," "Nazis," "alt-Right," and so on -- but like those terms, I've found it's generally just a Leftist pejorative for anybody who disagrees with their ideas.
Frequently so. As you can see the term carries many connotations for Veggie that are not recognizable to an actual neolib. Although I probably stray a little to the leftward side of that thing.

When the right complains about us we are "globalists" as far as I know. And cucks of course, and other words that just reference undifferentiated right wing terms of abuse, of which there are many.

Of those terms you listed, apart from "patriarchy", which are you supposing wasn't originally self chosen?

FlashDangerpants
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by FlashDangerpants » Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:36 pm

vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:21 pm
Why would you assume I was talking about an Indian? The problem with labels is that they become so abused that they end up meaningless. 'So-called 'neo-liberal' Govts. are 'conservative' ones.
I'm standing up for the actual neoliberal thing. I'm not here to defend conservatism, nor conservatives that you inaccurately call neoliberals. There are plenty of conservatives to argue about abortion with if we don't want any variety in our lives.

I don't place a lot of calls to call centres, I am modern, so I almost never speak to people on the phone at all. India was the location of the last foreign call centre I called - I got no idea when or where the previous one might have been, it probably wasn't in this current decade. I've never had any real difficulty with them though.

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henry quirk
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"I am modern, so I almost never speak to people on the phone at all."

Post by henry quirk » Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:07 pm

That there is a peculiar and funny thing to read.

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Sculptor
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by Sculptor » Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:21 pm

Neoliberalism is inequality.

FlashDangerpants
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by FlashDangerpants » Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:38 pm

Sculptor wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:21 pm
Neoliberalism is inequality.
So is everything else.

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vegetariantaxidermy
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by vegetariantaxidermy » Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:44 pm

FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:36 pm
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:21 pm
Why would you assume I was talking about an Indian? The problem with labels is that they become so abused that they end up meaningless. 'So-called 'neo-liberal' Govts. are 'conservative' ones.
I'm standing up for the actual neoliberal thing. I'm not here to defend conservatism, nor conservatives that you inaccurately call neoliberals. There are plenty of conservatives to argue about abortion with if we don't want any variety in our lives.

I don't place a lot of calls to call centres, I am modern, so I almost never speak to people on the phone at all. India was the location of the last foreign call centre I called - I got no idea when or where the previous one might have been, it probably wasn't in this current decade. I've never had any real difficulty with them though.
Nice backpedalling :lol:

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Sculptor
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Re: Neoliberalism is good (or at least ok).

Post by Sculptor » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:14 pm

FlashDangerpants wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:38 pm
Sculptor wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:21 pm
Neoliberalism is inequality.
So is everything else.
Rubbish.
Some economic systems are brave enough to mitigate the effects of inequality.

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